Month: October 2021

Not A Cheerful Holiday? Be Part of The Muscat Holidays

Muscat is located in Oman, a predominant Muslim country. There are many different Muscat Holidays. In January they celebrate with the Muscat holidays Festival. This festival is a celebration of Heritage and one of the biggest festivals of the year. This festival consists of Handicrafts, Folklore, theatrical performances, educational seminars, poetry readings, literature readings, and Muscat History.

It is both educational and cultural. In the month of March, Omanis celebrate Eid al Adha, also called the Festival of Sacrifice. During this festival any Muslim capable of making the pilgrimage to Mecca does so. The sacrifice of sheep, camels and cows also commence. The meat from these animal’s sacrifice is given to those that are less fortunate. The Islamic New Year, or Muharram, is in April. Any live entertainment and alcohol is banned during this time of year. June is very special, particularly mid-June, being Mohammad’s birthday or Mawlid Al Nabi. Salalah Khareef Festival runs the 6 weeks from mid-July to August. This festival is to celebrate the Monsoon season and cultural Heritage of Oman.

Oman hotels are highly popular during this time. September holds the Shopping Festival, where special deals and the Autumn Trade Fair can be found at the Oman International Exhibition Centre. This Exhibition Centre also plays host to The Motor Show. Motor shows consist of the newest models of vehicles and is open to the residents and public for viewing. Mid-November, approximately the 18th, is National Day. Camel Racing, Dancing, and fireworks can be seen on this day. Eid al Fitr, also in November, is a 3 day festival to celebrate the end of Ramadan. This is a time to enjoy being around family and eating wonderful traditional dishes. There is not any empty Muscat Hotels when these holiday times come each year.

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India – Jewellery Destination and Jewellery Shops in India

India and Jewellery, Jewellery and Indian women are interlinked with each other from decades. In almost every occasion starting from marriage to any event the fashion of a woman is incomplete without teaming up with proper jewellery. Some traditional and some modern styles of jewellery caters to the need of jewellery selection. Not only the affluent class can afford jewellery but there are also low cost jewellery items that cater the wide demand of jewellery in India. While picking up or choosing jewellery in India has lot to do with fashion trends heritage and culture. Different regions and culture follow their unique designs that go at par with their tradition. Kundan jewellery is a renowned art that we can see in Indian jewellery which usually comes from the state of Rajasthan. Almost every small and renowned jewellery shops in India showcases unique styles of Kundan art. Apart from Kundan jewellery Meenakari, the art of coloring the surface of metal to give a gorgeous look to the jewellery is quiet famous in India. Traditional temple style of Jewellery depicting the style of south India is quiet famous.

A married woman in India has to flaunt variety of Jewellery pieces as a part of culture that actually gives the lady a gorgeous look. A pair of toe rings is a symbol of a married lady these toe rings can be of silver or any other material. Apart from toe rings nose ring is also a part in Indian marriages. These nose rings are generally called nath that depicts prosperity of husband. Necklaces are an undetouchable part of traditional bridal attire. Necklace can be of different designs. It can be of traditional temple design or it can be of curved design. This piece of jewellery actually is an essential part of bridal or non bridal attire. In any occasion women can flaunt a necklace simple or heavy as per their occasions. Bangles usually worn in the hands to decorate the hands of a woman are also a part of bridal attire.

In India there are a variety of jewellery shops catering to the wide demand of jewelleries. These shops provides almost every type and form of jewellery. Some of the important and renowned jewellery shops in India are P.C Chandra Jewellers, Malabar Gold & Diamond Jewellers, Kalyan Jewellers, etc. Apart from visiting a jewellery showroom nowadays online shopping from portals like Caratlane has become quiet famous among women who hardly gets time after their office hours. To brief out India and its craze for jewellery is inseparable.

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Gardening Tips and Tricks For Late Autumn

Preparing for the Winter Months: Gardening in October

When you feel that first solid bite in the breeze and you see the songbirds winging their way south, and the trees are bursting with fire-laden hues, you know you can’t be spending the weekend curled up by the fireplace with a good book. Not for long.

While the weather is still gardener-friendly, you must shorten your “to-do” lists for the coming of late fall and early winter. Now is the time to attack your lawn and garden by planting your spring bulbs, buying and maintaining your trees and shrubs, doing your late autumn lawn care, using common-sense watering strategies, building a compost bin and making your own compost, controlling the many common garden pests, and winning at the weed-whacking war before the sudden onset of the fickle, cold and all-enveloping winter season.

Planting Your Perennials

Plant the spring-flowering bulbs until the ground becomes frozen, and prepare your tender but tenacious perennials for the coming seasonal changes. Remember that in the milder climates, bulbs can still be divided and transplanted. Plant hardy bulbs anytime before the soil freezes, but it’s best to plant them early enough so the root systems can grow before winter arrives. In some climates, you can plant until Thanksgiving or even Christmas. Late-planted bulbs develop roots in the spring, and may bloom late. But they’ll arrive on time by next year.

Be sure to position the bulbs at their proper depth. They must be planted so their bottoms rest at a depth two-and-a-half times each bulb’s diameter. In well-drained or sandy soil, plant an inch or two deeper to increase life and discourage rodents.

Choosing Your Trees and Shrubs

October is a wonderful time to shop for trees and shrubs at the nursery. They’re now showing their best and brightest colors there. You can plant them now and over the next few months, so that strong, healthy roots will grow over the winter.

You must carefully plan out your landscape to choose which trees you wish to plant for providing proper lawn coverage and the most beautiful scenery. When an appropriate tree is purchased, selected and planted in the right place, it frames your home and beautifies your land, making both more enjoyable. Trees can greatly increase the resale value of property, and even save you on energy costs.

Visualize your new trees at maturity while realizing that some trees develop as much width as height if given enough space to develop. Picture each tree’s size and shape in relation to the overall landscape and the size and style of your home. Trees peaking at forty feet do best near or behind a one-story home. Taller trees blend with two-story houses and large lots. Trees under thirty feet tall suit street side locations, small lots and enclosed areas such as decks and patios.

There are two basic types of trees you will be considering for purchase. Deciduous trees include large shade trees which frame areas with a cool summer canopy and a colorful autumn rack of superior colors. In winter, their silhouettes provide passage for sunlight. These trees can shade a southern exposure from summertime heat, and allow winter sunlight to warm the house. Evergreen trees have dense green foliage that suits them for planting as privacy screens, windbreaks or backdrops for flowering trees and shrubs. But they are handsome enough to stand alone. They do not lose their leaves, called needles, and provide year-round shelter and color. You should be sure to include a wide variety of both kinds of trees in your landscape to avoid losing them to diseases or pests. Buy disease- and pest-resistant trees.

When buying a tree, look for healthy green leaves if it has any, and also well-developed top growth. Branches should be unbroken and balanced around the trunk, and on dormant or bare-root stock they should be pliable. Examine the roots, which should form a balanced, fully-formed mass. Reject trees with broken or dried-out roots. Avoid trees showing signs of disease, pests or stress such as wilting, discoloration, misshapen leaves, scarred bark and nonvigorous growth. Consider the size of the tree. Young trees have a better rate of success when planted, and most flowering trees grow quickly, so start with less expensive, smaller specimens. And be sure and buy all your plants from a good quality nursery with a decent reputation.

Don’t prune a newly planted tree unless its form needs improving. Prune flowering trees in spring, after blooming, to correct unsightly problems. Crab apple trees are an exception and should be pruned in late winter. But you can remove diseased or dead branches anytime of the year, and much of this is done during the winter. Apply fertilizer when needed in the second and subsequent growing seasons. Mulch to conserve moisture, reduce weeds and eliminate mowing near the tree. Spread wood chips or bark four inches deep and as wide as the tree’s canopy around the base. But don’t mulch poorly drained over saturated soil. Wrap tree trunks after planting to prevent winter damage from weather and pests. And stake young trees, especially bare-root trees and evergreens, to fortify them against strong winds. Stake loosely and allow the tree to bend slightly, and remove stakes after one year.

Shrubs are often planted and used merely as foundation plants or privacy screens. But shrubbery foliage is vastly more versatile, and can go a long way toward livening up your landscaping. Countless varieties of gorgeously hued and beautifully leafed shrubs are available through nurseries and garden catalogs.

You must start by learning what varieties thrive in your area. Try visiting your local arboretum, where you may view different kinds of shrubs and decide whether they fit your gardening plans. Decide what overall look you want at different times of the year, and then find out which shrubs will be flowering, producing berries or sporting colorful foliage at those times. Compare what you find to the inventory at your local nursery, and ask the professionals who work there lots of questions.

Understand the characteristics of each shrub before you plant it. Flowering and fruit-bearing shrubs enhance a new home, but improper pruning and care will ruin the beauty of all your hard work. Some shrubs bloom on second- or third-year wood. If you’re maintaining a shrub because you’re hoping it’s going to blossom, but you’re cutting off first-year wood every year, it’s never going to bloom.

Some varieties are a foot tall at maturity, while others reach over fifteen feet. A large shrub will usually require more pruning. Also determine the plant’s ability to tolerate various soil conditions, wind, sun and shade. You don’t put a plant that’s sensitive to the elements in an open area. Use hardier plants to shelter it.

Not all shrubs work in every climate. Witch hazel, for example, blooms in fall or winter and is hardiest where minimum temperatures range from thirty degrees below zero to twenty degrees above. It would not be a good choice for very dry, hot climates. But some shrubs such as buddleia, hydrangea and spirea perform well across a wide range of growing zones.

Late Autumn Lawn Care

Aerate lawns in mid- to late-October, while the grass can recover easily. If you core aerate, make your cores three inches deep, spaced about every six inches. Break up the cores and spread them around. If your lawn needs it, thatch and follow with a fall or winter fertilizer. Even if thatching isn’t needed, your lawn will be happy for a dusting of fertilizer to help roots gain strength before the spring growing season. Overseed bald patches or whole lawns as needed. Rake and compost leaves as they fall, as well as grass clippings from mowing. If left on the ground now, they’ll make a wet, slippery mess that’s inviting to pests.

Good gardeners use heavy-duty molded plastic for shaping neat edges of beds. You can buy these from garden centers, nurseries and mail order suppliers in rolls of flat, four- to six-inch-tall plastic, and the edging installs easily. You’ll save yourself countless hours of removing grass and weeds that otherwise creep into your beds.

Watering Your Lawn and Garden

You can’t forget about watering in the middle of fall. The summer’s long over, but proper moisture now is key to your plants’ survival over the cold winter months. You’re likely to hear two pieces of advice on watering. One is that you should give established plants an inch of water per week, whether from rain or irrigation. The other is that personal observation of your own garden is the only way to judge how much water it needs. One fact about which there is more agreement: the ideal is to maintain constant moisture, not a cycle of wet soil followed by dry soil.

Although overwatering can be as big a problem as underwatering, most gardeners err on the side of too little. Your needs will vary through the year depending on the rate of evapotranspiration in your garden. Evapotranspiration refers to the two ways that plants lose water. There’s evaporation, the loss of water to the air from soil, water and other surfaces. Then the other way is called transpiration, or water lost primarily from the leaves and stems of the plants. You can often obtain evapotranspiration rates for local areas from water departments and other agencies. You will see a graphic description of how a plant’s natural need for water changes during the growing season.

In the meantime, keep these pointers in mind:

1) Water when it’s needed, not according to the calendar. Check the top six inches of the soil. If it’s dry and falls apart easily, water. Your plants will also show signs that they need water. Wilting, curling or brown leaves mean that your plants may lack adequate water. Meanwhile, bear in mind that excess water creates a lack of oxygen in plants, making them show similar symptoms to underwatering.

2) Water slowly, not more than one-half inch of water per hour. Too much water can be lost to runoff. This is why handheld watering cans or handheld hoses generally work only for watering small areas.

3) Water deeply. With established vegetables and flowers, six inches is a minimum. With trees and shrubs, water one to two feet or more. Shallow watering does more harm than good; it discourages plants from developing the deep roots they need to find their own water. Except when you are watering seedlings, soil should never be wet only in the top layer.

The increased use of piped municipal water and the invention of sprinklers have made mechanical irrigation the most commonly used watering method, particularly for lawns and large areas. Sprinkler irrigation works best with well-draining soils and shallow-rooted plants, or where a cooling effect is desired. But sprinklers have several disadvantages. They waste water, since much of it is sprayed on areas other than the root zone around the plant. Because much of the water is thrown high in the air, loss due to evaporation can be significant. Sprinklers can also foster fungal diseases and other problems with some plants such as roses that don’t like having wet foliage. Sprinklers require good water pressure and are best used on plants which are not in bloom. Several types of sprinklers are available.

Building a Bin and Making Your Own Compost

A bin will contain your compost pile and make it more attractive as well as keep it from spilling or blowing over into your yard. A circular or square structure can be made from fencing wire. The idea is to push the compost material together to make it heat up and rot properly. The bin should be at least three feet wide and three feet deep to provide enough space for the spreading material. Use untreated wood or metal fence posts for the corners and wrap sturdy wire fencing around them. The fence mesh should be small enough that rotting materials won’t fall out. When the compost is ready, unwind the wire and scoop from the bottom of the pile. Then re-pile the undecomposed material and wrap the wire back around the heap.

Many hard-core gardeners feel that three compost bins are the best for serious composting. By building a trio of bins you can compost in stages: one bin will be ready, one will be brewing and one will always be starting. Installing a cover, such as a plastic tarp or a piece of wood, helps to cut odor, control moisture and keep out wild pests. You will also want to use the right ingredients for a proper, lovely smelling rotting compost heap.

It’s easy to cook up your own pile. At first, layer grass clippings with a dash of leaves and twigs to create a concoction that turns into humus, the best plant food. Added ingredients for the compost comes from everyday waste in the kitchen and yard. But avoid any items that ruin your compost. Use green materials such as fruit and vegetable scraps, eggshells, coffee grounds, and grass and plant clippings; and brown materials, such as leaves, wood and bark chips, shredded newspaper, straw and sawdust from untreated wood. Avoid using any meat, oil, fat, grease, diseased plants, sawdust or chips from pressure-treated wood, dog or cat feces, weeds that go to seed or dairy products. These can befoul, spoil and make smelly and rancid a perfectly good productive compost heap.

There are two types of composting: cold and hot. Cold composting is as simple as piling up your yard waste or taking out the organic materials in your trash such as fruit and vegetable peels, coffee grounds or egg shells and then piling them in your yard. Over the course of a year or so, the material will decompose. Hot composting is for the more serious gardener; you’ll get compost in one to three months during warm weather. Four ingredients are required for fast-cooking hot compost: nitrogen, carbon, air and water. These items feed microorganisms, which speed up the process of decay.

Concentrated Pest Control

Slugs and other pests don’t disappear as the weather gets cooler. You’ll find them at all life stages in October, from eggs to youngsters and adults. For slugs, use whatever measures you prefer, salt, slug bait or saucers of beer to eliminate them. It’s best to catch them at the early stages to stop the reproduction cycle. And keep the ground well-raked and tidied to reduce their natural habitat.

Here’s a list of common garden pests and how to control them:

Thrips: Adult thrips are about one-sixteenth-inch long and have dark bodies with four fringed wings. Their size makes them difficult to detect in the garden. They attack young leaves, flower stalks and buds. Spray young foliage, developing buds and the soil around the bush with an insecticide containing acephate.

Cane borer: This insect is the maggot of the eggs laid by sawflies or carpenter bees in the freshly-cut cane of the rose after pruning. One telltale sign is a neatly-punctured hole visible on the top of the cane. To remove the pest, cut several inches down the cane until there are no more signs of the maggot or pith-eaten core. Seal all pruning cuts with pruning sealer.

Japanese beetle, Fuller rose beetle: These will eat parts of the foliage and sometimes the flowers. Pick beetles off the bush by hand. Or spray foliage and flowers with an insecticide containing acepate or malathion.

Leaf miner: This insect can be spotted on foliage by the appearance of irregular white chain-like blisters containing its grub. Remove foliage and discard it to prevent further infestation.

Spittle bug: This small, greenish-yellow insect hides inside a circular mass of white foam on the surface of new stems, usually during the development of the first bloom cycle in early spring. Spray a jet of water to remove the foam and the insect.

Roseslug: When you see new foliage with a skeletonized pattern, indicating that it has been eaten, chances are it’s the roseslug. Remove the infected foliage and spray with insecticidal soap or an insecticide that contains acephate.

Leaf cutter bee: As its name implies, this very small yellowish-green insect jumps on the undersides of foliage to feast, often leaving its white skin behind. The damage caused by this insect often results in defoliation. Use an insecticide containing acephate or malathion to prevent it from establishing a strong colony.

Rose scale: This insect hides under gray scales, normally on old canes or stems. It feeds by sucking the sap, weakening the plant. If the infestation is localized, try removing it with a fingernail. Or spray with an insecticide containing acephate.

Weed Whacking Made Easy

Actually, this is a slight exaggeration. There’s no rest for the wicked. Keep staying ahead of your nasty weeds all this and next month. They serve as Home Sweet Home for all manner of pests and bugs, and destroying them before they flower and seed will save you much work in the future.

Preparation is the key. All gardeners know what it’s like to have their yards invaded by unwelcome plants. Although there’s no really easy way to banish weeds, there are a few solid techniques you can use to reclaim your turf. At the very least, you can limit this utmost in hostile takeovers.

Here is a simple outline of effective battle strategies you can use in the fall:

1) Be a mulching maniac. Mulch acts as a suffocating blanket by preventing light from reaching weed seeds. At the same time, it holds moisture for your plants and provides nutrients for your soil as it decomposes. Apply coarse mulch, such as bark or wood chips, directly onto soil. Leaves, grass clippings, or straw work better as a weed deterrent with a separating layer of newspaper, cardboard or fabric between them and the soil.

2) Water those weeds. Pulling weeds is easier and more efficient when the soil is moist. You are more likely to get the whole root system, and your yanking won’t disturb surrounding plants as much either. No rain? Turn on the sprinkler or even water individual weeds, leave for a few hours and then get your hands dirty. Just ignore the strange looks from your neighbors as you lovingly water your weeds.

3) Cut weeds down in their prime. Weeds love open soil. But if you till or cultivate and then wait to plant, you can outmaneuver the weeds. Till the ground at least twice before you plant. Your first digging will bring dormant weed seeds to the surface where they can germinate. Watch and wait for a few weeks until they begin to grow. Then slice up the weeds again with a tiller or a hoe, only don’t dig as deep. Now it should be safe to put precious plants into the soil.

4) Pass the salt. Try sweeping rock salt into crevices between paths. Although more harsh, borax also works well. Be sure to wear rubber gloves with the latter material. You might need to apply a few doses, but be aware of any surrounding plants because both products kill the good plants along with the bad.

Food for Thought

In addition to performing these autumnal lawn and garden duties, you may want to harvest your fall vegetables such as the perennial squashes. Do a taste test and harvest them when flavor is at its peak. If you’d like to extend the harvest of carrots, turnips and other root vegetables, leave some in the ground to mulch as the weather gets colder. Early next month, before temperatures drop too much, seed cover crops such as clover, peas or vetch to enrich the soil. It will serve as a natural fertilizer, stifle weed growth and help loosen up the soil for next year’s crops.

As for your houseplants that you’ve put outside for the summer, if September was mild enough that your geraniums and other such plants are still outdoors, be sure to make them cozy inside before the first frost takes a bite out of them. Take geranium cuttings of two to four inches to root indoors. If you treat houseplants chemically, be sure to keep them warm and away from direct sunlight. Fertilize houseplants now and they won’t need it again until March. And remember to get your poinsettias and your Thanksgiving and Christmas cacti ready for well-timed holiday color. Give them a daily dose of ten hours of bright daylight or four hours of direct sun and fourteen hours of night darkness. Cacti need a cool environment of fifty to sixty degrees, while poinsettias prefer a warmer sixty-five to seventy degrees. Be sure and let your cacti dry out between waterings.

For a true gardenaholic, winter is often considered to be the enemy. But with a few steps toward preparation in the early- to mid-fall, you can take care of your lawn, garden and houseplants in a way that will keep them thriving and surviving until the dawning of yet another most welcome and bountiful springtime.

The information in this article was gleaned from the MSN House and Home website and the Better Homes and Gardens website.

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Airport Taxi Services – Reach Your Destination Comfortably After a Long Tiring Flight

It is important to hire taxi services while returning home from a long international journey by air. Firstly, you will be coping up with the jet lag and exhaustion of the journey, but at the same time, you would also want to make sure that your luggage is safe. Not to forget, you will have to go through the chaotic city traffic, before reaching your homes or hotel rooms.

Thus, you need a good taxi service, which can take you to your desired destination without any hassles. Once you hire their services, you will not have to worry about your luggage or the traffic, just get into the taxi, and enjoy your drive.

A few tips to choose the best taxi service at the airport are discussed below.

How to choose a good taxi service?

· The driver provided by the company must be experienced and should know the area and routes

· They should charge fairly

· Your life and luggage should be secured by them

· The journey should be comfortable

You need to check all these basic things before hiring a taxi at the airport.

How to plan for hiring cars?

Like any other program, you also need to plan well before hiring a cab at the airport. You will need to know about the various services they offer, and their charges. Also, find out if there are any changes in their rates, during peak or off seasons.

Car rental services charge a little more than usual during festive seasons like Christmas or the New Year. As there is high demand for such services during the holiday season, you need to plan your trip accordingly.

You can also get a very good idea about the car rental companies by going through their online customer reviews on various reputed review sites and blogs. You can shortlist the companies that have the maximum number of positive reviews on various online forums. You could also take assistance from your travel agency to help you choose a good car rental company.

The comfort point of view

You also need to know about the extent of comfort and security that your taxi services provide. Whenever you are travelling in a rented car alone or with a group, comfort and safety should be assured by the service provider.

There should be enough seats and space within the vehicle to comfortably accommodate everyone in your group. The cab interiors must not be too warm or cold. The seats should be flexible and adjustable.

If you are on a holiday tour, the chauffeur can also guide you to various places of interest in the city. Thereby, allowing you to enjoy a comfortable journey.

How to book?

You can easily book an airport taxi online by visiting agency websites. All you need to do is enter the details of the number of passengers, destination address, date and time of arrival, etc. on their website. Companies offer their services at economical rates, and you can hire them to visit almost any place you want, and at any hour of the day.

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Bohemian Holiday Caftans and Housedresses

Bohemian holiday style, with its ethical, handmade kaftans, nature loving fabrics, free flowing embellished caftans, free-spirited colorful loungers, is just so relaxing and calming. Embracing natural cottons and breathable fabrics, the embellished indie bohemian kaftans in earthy colors, floral and leafy designs or tribal ethnic prints adds a bit of wanderlust, the gorgeous boho housedresses are perfect for thanksgiving dinners and family events.

Bohemian maxi dresses can vary from laid-back, printed soft viscose crepe caftans to embellished designer style housedresses with kimono sleeves. Adjustable drawstring waist and lightweight fabrics, these are great as patio dresses or coverups.With boho weddings on the rise in natural open spaces, it’s all about the handmade artisan-inspired detail. Delicate crewel embroidered caftans, recycled sari caftans in unique prints, viscose maxi dresses, the choices have a global traveller vibe. Combine these details with a relaxed silhouette, malabeads and big hoop earrings and you have nailed the boho hostess look.

Whether Thanksgiving or Christmas dinners are set to be a dressed-up affair, or relaxed and casual, you’re going to want to be dressy yet understated, edgy but not overdressed. Earth conscious, thankful to the universe, the boho fashionista wears hand embroidered boho maxi dresses, flowy cotton caftans and georgette resort dresses which are beautiful dress alternatives for hostesses who want to feel at ease with their guests and family.

Pashmina caftans in soft pinks and mauves, or brilliant blues with woven paisley designs handmade in warm wool blends worn over turtle necks and leggings are stylish and comfortable. The soft flowy fabrics and warm subtle colors are just perfect for outdoor farmhouse dinners. Lace edging adds a touch of class and the designs are reminiscent of the jamavar traditions of the old world. Lush hand embroidered cotton caftans add a touch of bohemian, for the beautiful earth loving hostess. The earthy colors and free flowing shapes add simple elegance and make you feel like a bohemian goddess. Ankle length caftans or just mid calf dresses the styles are flattering for morning breakfasts watching sunrises in the hills or casual dinner with friends.

Go for a boho colorful sheer georgette caftan worn over leggings and a body suit for an unexpected, indie look. Boho chic and on-trend with a hint of 70s vintage the dressy caftan is an ideal option for hostesses who want to be comfortable as they entertain. It also makes a profound statement, supporting ethical fashion. A relaxed maxi dress with artisan crafted floral embroidery strikes the perfect balance between laid-back luxury and staying grounded to Mother Earth.

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Freeport Bahamas – The One Stop Holidaying Destination

Given the fact that the holiday season is here, many of us would love to pamper our self and our loved ones with a nice refreshing holiday. There are many destinations that are very famous for its various reasons. These places have something in them that makes people go repeatedly to these places and the best part is that people enjoy going to these places repeatedly. One such amazing place that is one of the most appropriate destinations for a holiday with friends and family is the Freeport Bahamas. As we all know, the Bahamas is a conglomeration of seven hundred small islands. Is this not an amazing thing in itself? This means that any person, who goes to the Bahamas, can actually visit these various small islands and have a time of their own. This is one place that has a lot to offer to each tourist who goes there to unwind himself or herself and to have a time of their life.

Working hard day and night has definitely made each one of us tired and at some point or the other, we all feel like taking a break and unwinding our soul, our bodies and definitely our minds. Trying to cope up with this highly competitive situation, we all get exhausted at some point or the other and that is when we feel like going to a place where we can find our peace of mind. Life has become more of a rat race. However, the good part is that we still have not lost our mind completely and therefore, we still feel like loving our self and our loved ones. Going to Freeport Bahamas for a warm and refreshing vacation is one of the most appropriate decisions that one can take and this vacation definitely helps one to get back to life and love life once again.

The Freeport Bahamas is a city and a free-trade zone of the beautiful and exotic islands of the grand Bahamas. Being one of the most beautiful cities in the Bahamas Island, this place definitely attracts a lot of tourist and once thee tourists come to this exotic place, they are bound to come back to this place repeatedly. This place has a lot to offer to all its tourists. Apart from giving them access to scenic beauty and a chance to feel close to nature, Freeport Bahamas give them a chance to rejuvenate their mind, body and soul. This place also gives them a chance to rebound with their loved ones and to again enjoy themselves with their family members and their loved ones.

Even if we participate in this rat race, even if we work hard day and night, one thing we cannot forget is that it is our loved ones for whom we come home at night. Therefore, it is necessary that we try to give quality time to our loved ones and make them realize that they mean a lot to us. Going to the Freeport Bahamas for a vacation with our loved ones is definitely a chance to make them realize that they mean a lot to us.

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Tips For Experiencing Your First Safari

Great Safari Preparations Equals Great Safari Experiences!

Preparations on Clothing

One area that is the main source of devastating safari experiences, is clothing. When you are preparing for a Kenyan safari, it is fundamental that you take careful consideration about the type and style of clothing you carry along.

  • Some of the factors that you should take into account includes the weather patterns of the various safari locations you will visit in Kenya. This is because, different regions across Kenya experience different types of climatic conditions.
  • For instance, down at the Coast, it is extremely hot and humid for the better part of the year. On the other hand, in most parts of Rift Valley and Western provinces the climate is relatively cool with substantial amount of rainfall throughout the year with occasional spells of cold.

Therefore, it is advisable to carry clothes that are suitable for the different safari locations. Some of the clothing that have come in handy for me includes trench coats, shorts, scarfs, t-shirts, denim jeans and one or two pieces of formal wear in case I get invited for official functions during my safari escapades. In addition, being a relatively conservative nation, it is a good idea to tone down on the type of clothes you wear. This is more applicable for female safari enthusiasts

Shoes Preparations

Shoes are particularly important when you are planning to engage in safari walks, game hunting, and mountain climbing and caving adventures. You do not want to go game hunting with your million dollar Gucci shoes or explore caves with your stilettos. They will not only be damaged but also, they can cause you serious leg and bone injuries.

  • Invest in good safari shoes. I have found running shoes to do the trick. This is because they are built for these types of activities. There are assortments of brand of shoes that have stood the test of time such as the Nike Safari running shoes. An avid user of running shoes, they are ideal for walks and jogs and they can effectively withstand the strain of safari adventures.
  • Remember, suitable clothes and good shoes during a safari equals comfort, flexibility and agility in engaging in various safari adventures including game hunting thus, enriching your safari experiences

Preparations for Your Safari Pictures

Since taking an African safari and for this matter a Kenyan safari is a life -long dream, you will need to carry the memories of the safari with you by taking as many pictures as you can. Although there are variety of relatively affordable cameras sold around major towns and cities in Kenya, having your own camera from home is more convenient. This ensures that you not only have the right type of cameras and devices to capture all the exciting safari experiences but also, ensure you have quality photos and videos to store and share with friends.

There is a wide variety of camera brands that you can use during and after your safari.

Preparations For Your Luggage

Loss of luggage is a common occurrence among safari enthusiasts. Most of the time, loss of luggage is caused by poor preparedness.

  • Instead of bringing everything you own on a safari, simply restrict yourself to one or two bags that contains the most essential things. This means investing in quality bags that will ensure your things are safe and in good condition.
  • There are numerous brands of bags that you can invest in depending on your budget, needs and style.

Preparations on Additional Items

When you are on a safari, there are items that you can carry along that enrich your safari experiences. This includes

  • Binocular; to gaze beyond the horizon
  • Compass; to find your way in the Kenyan jungle
  • Flash disk; for additional storage of your photos etc.,
  • Watch; to help you meet your safari itinerary
  • Map; to find your way when in new places

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The Bahamas – Your Dream Vacation Destination

The Bahamas is an archipelago consisting of over 700 islands and cays in a crescent as long as Florida. Contrary to popular belief, the Bahamas is not in the Caribbean, but is in the Atlantic Ocean, just 50 miles off the coast of Florida. The Grand Bahamas Yacht Club is just a short half-day cruise from any South Florida port. The Bahamas is an independent country and a member of the British Commonwealth of Nations. The Bahamas economy is driven by tourism and financial services. The Bahamas is served by all air major carriers and is easily accessible from anywhere in North America.

For many people, the Bahamas is a dream vacation destination inviting travelers from all over with its white sandy beaches and crystal blue waters. The Bahamas is a year-round destination and is a really fun place to go anytime, but because it’s in the Atlantic and not the Caribbean, it can be a little cooler than many people expect in the winter.

The Bahamas is one of the great sport fishing destinations of the world. Deep sea fishing in the Bahamas is the perfect mix of relaxation and exhilaration. And if fishing is not your thing, the nightlife scene in the Bahamas is interesting, exciting and active.

Nassau is the capital of the Bahamas. Nassau is located on New Providence Island. Nassau offers a variety of experiences from non-stop excitement to peaceful relaxation. The city of Nassau is the largest in the Bahamas and is the Bahamas most popular vacation destination. Nassau is the undisputed resort Mecca of the Bahamas. There’s no need to rent a car in Nassau. You can easily get about Nassau by taxi, or consider exploring Nassau by scooter or by renting a bicycle.

Nassau is the introductory destination that many cruisers experience on their first cruise from Florida. One of the big draws is duty free shopping, as well as the casino. Duty free shopping is available throughout Nassau and Paradise Island, and there is no sales tax in the Bahamas. Nassau makes a great introduction to the Bahamas and has been welcoming visitors at least since the days of the legendary pirate Blackbeard.

Paradise Island is connected by bridge to the north shore of New Providence Island and Nassau. The huge Atlantis Resort is a legendary lavish property on Paradise Island. Luxury hotels are in abundance on Paradise Island. If the Atlantis doesn’t suit what you’re looking for, try the Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort on Paradise Island or the Comfort Suites Paradise Island, which has been rated Three-Diamonds by AAA. Villas in Paradise on Paradise Island offers one, two and three bedroom villas. Club Med on Paradise Island offers the full Club Med tropical experience just a quick flight from Florida. You can see the world’s largest aquarium or the casinos of Cable Beach. You can also try your luck at one of the exciting games in the Atlantis Paradise Island Casino. Paradise Island also has a seaplane base (WZY) if you’d like to experience your airplane landing on the water – on purpose.

Freeport on Grand Bahama Island is a 230-square-mile free trade zone established in 1955 by the Government of The Bahamas. It’s the location of the city of Freeport, which has grown to be the second most populated city in the Bahamas after the capital, Nassau. Imagine if you can a night in your ocean-side villa in the Bahamas, being serenaded by wild birds and the waves on the beaches. To reach your villa, fly into Freeport, which is easily accessible from Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Seagrape Bed and Breakfast on Grand Bahama Island is located in the Lucayan Beach neighborhood of Freeport. Freeport Resort and Club is another great destination located in Freeport. You might also enjoy the Ocean Reef Yacht Club and Resort, which fronts the marina in Freeport, on the south shore of Grand Bahama Island, or try the Port Lucaya Resort and Yacht Club in Freeport, Bahamas.

A trip to the Bahamas is surely a treat for everyone. From the glittery Atlantis Resort to the dreamy views of blue sea and white sand, the Bahamas has something for everyone. The Bahamas is a place where you can go to relax and have fun – a perfect place to get away from it all on the white sandy beaches or to get into the middle of hot nightlife at the casinos. Whether diving in the warm, crystal-clear waters, exploring a lighthouse or beachcombing on a deserted island, the Bahamas is the perfect vacation destination.

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Tips for Choosing the Best Dive Centre for Your Next Scuba Diving Holiday

If you’re planning a dive trip to some exotic location that you’ve never been to, chances are you probably want to do some research before choosing the right diving center.

You want to make sure that your experience will be fun and exciting, but safe and well-thought out as well. As there are a lot of disreputable dive centers as there are respectable ones, it is extremely vital to make the right choice.

Moreover, choosing the right dive shop will make the difference between an awesome scuba diving holiday experience and a botched one.

That said, there are certain things to keep in mind when doing your research, several of which I’ve listed below:

  • Read the online reviews on sites such as or Although these review sites aren’t 100% accurate as there have been efforts by businesses to skew the reviews, most of the time, the reviews will at least give you some sense as to whether a business is doing okay or terribly. Try to ignore the extremely bad or extremely good reviews, and focus on the ones in the middle. Those tend to be the more accurate of the reviews.
  • Call or email the dive shop in advance. And remember to give yourself enough time to contact them. One of the ways you can gauge how good a dive shop is based on how responsive they are. I’ve seen countless people get turned off by a certain dive center simply because they never heard back from the staff. I know, I have. Usually, but not always, a dive shop that doesn’t get back to you in time or simply ignores your email, is probably not going to be too concerned with the overall guest experience.
  • Once you’ve established contact, ask if they have dive packages, and see if they are willing to offer you special scuba diving package deals. This is especially true if you’ll be doing multiple dives over several days.
  • Also, check to make sure the dive center is up-to-date with safety equipment such as oxygen kits, AEDs, emergency kits, as well as safety procedures. Unfortunately, there are a TON of dive centers out there lacking the basic safety equipment and standards, which makes it extremely dangerous if you end up diving with such a dive center. A simple asthma attack can turn deadly if the proper equipment and procedures aren’t set in place.
  • Always trust your gut instinct. From your correspondence with this dive center, do you get an overall good feeling? If something seems off or doesn’t sit well with you, look for another dive center.

Taking these steps is by no means a guarantee for a fool-proof scuba diving holiday trip, however, it will help you eliminate many dive operations that are not up-to-par, and save you the headache from a completely botched dive vacation.

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Why Greece Is an Ideal Tourist Destination

One of the most visited holiday destination, with mild temperate climate, azure water, sandy beaches, cozy island getaways, and with ancient history and a legacy of rich culture, Greece is the favorite tourist destination for travelers of the world. The historical ruins are architectural marvel, showcasing feats of engineering from times when no modern implements were available.

Greece is also a popular destination for honeymooners. There are numerous honeymoon resorts dotting the country, mainly around the islands. The ambiance in these resorts has a romantic touch to it that attracts honeymooners.

Hotels in Greece

Visitors coming to Greece for business and leisure prefer hotels. The impeccable service and warm reception have led hotels to curve a niche for themselves. The hotels are classified either as Luxury, A, B or C or they are rated as five, four, three, three, two or one star hotels. One will also come across classifications as Hotels in Athens, Hotels in Ionian Islands, Hotels in Dodecanese Islands, Hotels in Northern Greece, and Hotels in Central Greece. There are also hotels to found in other regions of Greece, like Northern Aegean Islands, Saronic Gulf Islands, Sporades Islands and Evia, and Cyclades Islands.

Greece island packages available for tourists take into account all types of preferences that cater to different wishes and needs of clients. These packages come with different types and class of accommodation and also with or without car rental for different Greek islands. Visitors can select their choice of package that is both affordable and flexible and can enjoy the beauties that Greece has to offer to the world.

The Greece island packages provide tailor-made holidays, and include flexibility on flight and boat tickets, selection of accommodation and transfers, in addition to tailor-made arrangements and encompass travel, transfers and accommodation to give you the peace of mind.

Greek Beeches

The beaches of Greece are among the most popular tourist attractions for visitors, with over thousands travelers visiting every year. These beaches are well-known for their scenic beauty and cool atmosphere. The coastal regions have around 404 beaches that are under the supervision of the government. The blue water of the beaches is home to all kinds of water sports. The best time to come at these beaches is from October to November. The sand in this period remains relatively cooler while the water remains transparent. Some of the noted beaches found in Greece include the Beaches in Santorini Island, Crete Beaches, Cyclades Beaches, Dodecanese Beaches, Ionian Beaches, Saronic Beaches, and Sporades Beaches.

Greek Entertainment

There are lots of amusement and entertainment to be found in Greece. The entertainment industry here is an exciting mix of tradition and modernity. The theaters, cinemas and concerts showcase the rich civilization of Greece. The amphitheatres stages play in an open boundary and are watched by audience seated at a higher level.

Athens, the capital city has some of the best clubs in Greece. There are numerous bars, cafes and clubs to be found across the country, and is a major industry. Many of these bars are located in idyllic surrounding that tourist find ideal to unwind after sightseeing. For musical lovers, there are different musical clubs, scattered across the capital city.

Food lovers would find the restaurants and taverns a gourmet’s delight. The cuisines at these eateries give a rich and authentic Greek cuisine flavor and taste. These taverns also serve cuisines of India, mid-eastern and China.

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Barbeque Secret…Don’t Use Gas To Start The Fire!

I’ve rarely been accused of over thinking a situation. My “code of the west” mentality has been good to me through the years, rescuing me many times from the temptation of unnecessary thinking! Unnecessary thinking can ruin a perfectly good plan, but no thinking at all can be hazardous to your health! A good case in point is a situation I witnessed last year.

One brilliantly blue afternoon in late spring my neighbor Joe was preparing for one of his famous cookouts. He was about to put his brand new brick and mortar barbeque grill through its paces for the first time. A beautiful charcoal grill, he had personally, to the chagrin of the brick masons, supervised every detail of the project. It was a gorgeous fireplace style grill with the chimney almost head high built of the same brick that adorned his house.

The barbeque pit featured a curved flat black steel hood for enclosed cooking; with a warming tray built into the side of the pit to keep foods from getting cold while others cooked longer. There was even a compartment built on the opposite side to house charcoal and lighter. He was understandably proud of the best barbeque grill in the neighborhood!

Festivities began early with the neighbors arriving around 2:00 pm. By late afternoon many in the crowd were already feeling the effects of the adult beverages supplied by the host, who was especially enjoying himself. Everyone by now had grown tired of listening to an endless monolog by the host about the virtues of his new grill.

The time had come to fire up the grill! There was only one small problem. With all the preparations he had made for the cookout, Joe had forgotten charcoal lighter! Not to be detoured by such a small detail, he went into the tool shed at the back of his yard and brought back a large can of gasoline. After dumping a huge amount of charcoal into the bottom of the grill, he arranged it into a perfect pyramid. The fire was supposed to burn more consistently this way Joe informed the crowd.

By now the neighbors had begun realized what Joe was about to do and started yelling at him not to use the gasoline to start the fire. Offers were made to run next door to get charcoal lighter to no avail. Joe was determined to inaugurate his grill the proper way; with a large fire! He also assured everyone that he knew what he was doing!

Joy was enjoying himself, being the star of the show as it were. He upended the can of fuel over the charcoal and kept pouring even after the briquettes had been thoroughly soaked. Now came the moment of truth! He lit a match and with a dramatic flare, tossed it onto the charcoal! Whoooomp!

Mortar is very porous and does not always adhere perfectly to a surface without leaving a small crack in the mortar joint between bricks. When a liquid such as water, or in this case gasoline fills that crack, it will flow into the base of the structure, such as a barbeque grill. The vapors from the gasoline that had flowed into the grill did what gasoline vapors do when they come in contact with a flame. The grill exploded!

Bricks and mortar blown into pieces, rained from the sky onto all of us who had witnessed the explosion! No one was hurt because most of the crowd and moved safely away from Joe when they saw what he was about to do. Joe was slightly injured by a fragment of the grill grazing his forehead. Nothing serious!

His grill was a mess! A few seconds before, it was a beautiful example of workmanship; something to be proud of and enjoy for years to come. Now it was just a mile of rocks! Joe had apparently never heard that in some cases, alcohol and gasoline don’t mix! Warning! Drinking and starting fires with gasoline can kill you! Whether you’re drinking adult beverages or not, do not use gasoline for a charcoal starter!

My neighbor Joe has recovered from the disaster of last year. He is now making plans to build and even bigger charcoal cooker than the last one. From the size of the storage area in the barbeque pit, I doubt that he will ever run out of charcoal lighter again!

Remember, friends don’t let friends’ barbeque drunk!

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Destination Weddings – The New Concept Of Celebration

Are you planning to tie the knot with your partner soon? Do you wish to make your big day bigger and happier? If you are one among many who wish to have a destination wedding with peace and serenity then choose the perfect place to exchange your sacred vows. Planning your wedding with destination wedding planners you would make your post marriage trip also an easy task as you can plan your honeymoon too in the same place.

If you are a resident of the place it would be quite easier for you to make arrangements for your big day on your own. However, if you are a nonresident or living in a place near, it might be quite difficult for you to manage the wedding tasks. Keeping in view the long checklist of the most precious day of your life here we are enlisting the various destination wedding forms that are being offered by hotels and resorts across different places. Though these plans come up with basic features, they can customize the plan as per your interest and budget. Let’s have a look at some unique and enticing wedding plans,

Chapel Wedding – Wedding in a chapel is a very exotic way of exchanging your wedding vows. You can get in touch with the resorts which are offering chapel weddings and can customize the decoration arrangements. This kind of wedding plan comes up with all sorts of arrangements such as guests seating arrangements, stage decoration, guest accommodation, wedding cuisine and much more. They would present a basic plan; subject to modifications as per your specifications.

Resort wedding – In this kind of plan you tie the knot under broad day light or serene moon light. There is no roof decoration under this sort of plan unless you specify it. The decorations are generally generic and again those are subjected to modifications. The strength of the accommodation depends on the place you choose, generally, it ranges from 200- 1000. They can even arrange for a chapel if you wish to have a chapel wedding in a resort.

Beach wedding – Beach weddings are the most sought after by these generation people. Tying the knot in the presence of waters along with guests is an exciting way of celebrating your wedding. As this is the most sought after wedding plan, this kind of wedding would pinch your pocket slightly. Yet it can guarantee a pleasant wedding experience. Most of the resorts locate on the sea shores; wedding in a beach resort would be very romantic and pleasant.

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The First Christmas Stamp – A History of Holiday Postage

Today Christmas stamps are sold by many countries during the holiday season and are used to add a little color and cheer to Christmas cards and letters. But how did this tradition start?

In December 1898, Canada issued a 2-cent stamp celebrating the introduction of imperial penny postage and inscribed with the words “XMAS 1898.” This stamp is usually regarded as the world’s first Christmas stamp, but it wasn’t actually released to celebrate the holidays. Instead, as legend goes, Postmaster William Mulock suggested to Queen Victoria that the stamp should be released in November “to honor the Prince” (meaning the Prince of Wales). But when the queen showed obvious displeasure with the idea and asked which prince he was referring to, Mulock quickly answered, “Why, the Prince of Peace, ma’am”. So when the stamp was issued in December, it bore not only the image of a world map, but also the words “XMAS 1898” at the bottom of the stamp.

It wasn’t until nearly 40 years later that another country issued a Christmas stamp. This time the country was Austria. In 1937, it issued two stamps billed as “Christmas Greeting Stamps,” but neither had a Christmas theme. One showed a zodiac sign and the other one depicted a rose. Brazil was next in line, issuing four semi-postal stamps in 1939, and Hungary followed suit with a semi-postal stamp in 1941. Semi-postal stamps are ones that are sold above the stamp’s value to raise money for a specific cause.

So it wasn’t until 1943 that Hungary issued the first Christmas-themed stamp that was sold specifically as a holiday stamp. Now many nations of the world issue postage stamps with a Christmas theme that are intended for use on seasonal mail.

The first Christmas stamp issued by the United States came was a 4-cent stamp issued in 1962. The green and red stamp featured a wreath, two candles, and the words “Christmas 1962”. The postal service anticipated a huge demand for the new stamp and ordered 350 million printed, the largest number ever produced up until that time for a special stamp. But it wasn’t enough. When the initial supply quickly ran out the Bureau of Engraving and Printing began working around the clock to print more. By the end of the season, one billion of the first Christmas stamps were printed and distributed.

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Grand Bahamas Island – Perfect Holiday Destination

If you are exhausted with the grueling work schedule at the office, then this could be your perfect time to think for a blissful break from work. Plan a healthy vacation with your forsaken family and have an utmost pleasure of visiting the best exotic locations of the world. And, while deciding on the destination places, the first name that comes to your mind is the rejuvenating location of grand Bahamas Island. The fascinating sight of several white, crystal clear beaches, beautiful gardens, clean golf courses and amazing shopping opportunities have compelled the visitors to terms this place as traveler’s paradise. Moreover, as this Island holds something in the bag for every age group, your entire family and friends are assured of having an unforgettable experience.

Grand Bahamas Island presents a perfect example of natural beauty served with luxuries of contemporary facilities. Every earthy grace is intelligently preserved with style and comfort for the pleasure of the visitors. Water lovers will simply adore grand Bahamas Islands as it banks more than 200 beaches with countless sports activities available for the travelers. You can easily pick up your favorite water sports such as scuba diving, swimming, under water diving fishing and many more. However, those who are not much fond of water activities can also have the luxury of developing your skills on the golf courses. Bahamas is blessed with countless nine holes and eight holes golf courses that are widely available at all hotels and motels. It may be possible that tourists have to pay an extra amount of charge for using this facility but obviously the most intriguing pleasure of playing golf on one of the best courses in the world is indispensable.

Therefore, if by now you have selected grand Bahamas Island to be your next vacation spot then do not take long to book your cheap holiday package. Many vacation planners and travel agencies are actively providing suitable packages that allow the visitors to explore this amazing site in limited amount of cash. Moreover, as this place is specifically designed for the tourists, one can stay assured with the fact that a specified budget will be able to bear all the expenses. Various hotels and other accommodations are present in this region to suit different budgets of the travelers. As far as the conveyance is concerned, special bus service and facilities are available for the tourists. However, it is still recommended to carry maps and guide books with your belongings.

Most people believe that grand Bahamas Island is a place that invites tourist over and over again with its undying charm and magnificent hospitality. In addition to this, shopping experience at Bahamas is commendable. You may not find the regular metropolitan malls here, but the collection at bazaars and market will not let you complain either. Do not forget to buy junk jewelry, stone stuff and other hand made items for your friends and relatives. In fact the grand Bahamas islands is one place one beautiful location in the world that will make you forget all your problems allow you to live life king size.

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10 Decorating Tricks For Your Fireplace Candelabra

Enjoying the fresh spring air and the lovely aromas of new green grass and budding blossoms, your fireplace is probably the last thing on your mind. You’ve finished spring cleaning your fireplace and are ready to put aside all your unused firewood for the year. But remember that your fireplace doesn’t have to be forgotten during this warm time of the year. It can still be the focal point of your home and home decor.

How can you use your fireplace without the heat of a fire? A fireplace candelabrum is a quick and easy way to bring some warmth and style to your fireplace without that heat. You could simply purchase one and place it in your fireplace as is. But did you know that there are ways to make fireplace candelabra even more unique and styled specifically for your home? Here are ten great tricks for decorating your fireplace candelabra.

1. Use Fabric to Decorate Your Fireplace Candelabra – Having fireplace candelabra lit in your fireplace can create a warm glow and an inviting flicker, but you will not always have your candles lit. So during the times when you do not, you can add a little color using fabric. Find a color and design that matches the rest of your home decor, and purchase a small amount; about a yard should be plenty. Simply wrap the fabric around and in and out of the spindles of the candelabrum. Let some of the fabric bunch and billow out at random intervals. Tuck in the ends and edges and you quickly have a beautiful centerpiece. Replace the candles, but remember to remove the fabric before lighting them.

2. Use Different Candle Colors for Different Occasions – Decorating for a specific occasion or holiday? Don’t forget to change the color of your candles in your fireplace candelabra! This is such an easy trick, but it is very effective. Think about the colors normally associated for the season, such as light greens and pinks for the spring, or red, white and blue for the Fourth of July.

3. Use Different Sizes of Candles for a Designer Look – You can give your fireplace candelabra a professional designer look by simply changing the size and shape of your candles. Think about using several sizes of column candles at the same time. Or you can use a few globe candles in the front and some column candles in the back. Tea light candles work well with fireplace candelabra that do not have center pins. Experiment with them and see what looks good to you.

4. Take Your Fireplace Candelabra Outside – Candelabra made for your fireplace are usually pretty sturdy. They are generally made out of wrought-iron or some other very durable material. This makes them ideal for use outside. Try using your fireplace candelabra as a centerpiece on your patio table. If you have a long picnic table, you can use a candelabrum that is designed for a smaller fireplace. How about using a couple candelabra to decorate either side of your front door, or back door? If you are worried about your candles blowing out from gusts of wind, you can use votive candles surrounded by glass, but your candelabra cannot have center pins for this to work.

5. Put Your Fireplace Candelabra on Your Mantel – For those of us who have gas or electric fireplaces, and do not wish to remove the fake logs during the warm season, consider placing a candelabrum or two on your mantel. This is actually a very classic way of decorating your fireplace. Use fireplace candelabra that are made for smaller fireplaces or zero clearance fireplaces.

6. Put Your Fireplace Candelabra on Your Hearth – If you do not have a mantel, you can place your fireplace candelabra on your hearth just as easily. Be sure to add a little greenery in the spring, maybe a sting of fall leaves in the autumn and some pine needles and cones in the winter for an added special touch.

7. Use Your Fireplace Candelabra as a Dining Room Table Centerpiece – What if you do not own a fireplace? You can still find great uses for these versatile home décor items. They work great as a centerpiece on your dining room table. Just place some elegant tapered candles on them and add a few sprigs of greenery and you have a beautiful centerpiece in minutes that looks like it took hours to create. This is also a great way to use your fireplace candelabra during the winter months when you are actually using your fireplace for a warm fire.

8. Create Ambiance With Scented Candles – To create a calm and relaxing atmosphere in your home, you can add lavender or vanilla scented candles to your fireplace candelabra. If you want a romantic mood, try a little sandalwood or jasmine scent. For a warm, homey feel, you could use apple and cinnamon. Virtually any mood can be enhanced by a little aromatherapy. Be creative and have fun.

9. Place a Mirror in Your Firebox to Reflect Light – This trick is one of my favorites and it is super easy. Find a mirror about the same size as the back of your firebox. This can be framed or unframed, your choice. Simply lean the mirror up against the back of your firebox and light your fireplace candelabra candles. The mirror will reflect the light from the candles and give the illusion of twice as many candles. It is a really beautiful effect.

10. Place Glass Beads Under Your Fireplace Candelabra – This trick is also simple, but has a dramatic effect. Find some glass beads at your local craft store that are the same color as your home decor. You can also use clear glass beads for a versatile option. Fill a tray with the beads and place under your fireplace candelabra. Scatter a few beads around the tray to hide the edges of the tray. The beads will reflect the light from your candles into millions of flickering points of interest. Be creative with this. Use colored beads for a special holiday, or use red beads for a romantic evening. The possibilities are limitless.

These ideas are meant to give you a taste of the creativeness you can use to decorate your fireplace. Have some fun brain-storming and thinking up new ways to use your fireplace candelabra. Remember to be safe and remove your flammable decorations before lighting your candles.

Go for it today! Let your creative juices flow. Find your favorite fireplace candelabra and a few decorative additions and you are ready to make your fireplace uniquely yours!

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Freeport Bahamas – My Eagerly Anticipated Holiday Destination

For the last eight months I have been slogging at work continuously without taking a break. I have been going to work, working late hours and most importantly I have not been spending quality time with my spouse and children. Now I have decided that it is high time for me to take a break and go for a long vacation with my family. I think this is long over due. Now I have been getting suggestions from all those avid travelers both at home and also from members of my extended family who are traveling buffs. So I have many choices but am unable to choose the perfect destination. Freeport Bahamas is the one destination that I would like to explore as I have hard many wonderful things about this place. I have been told that this place offers something or the other to everybody whether it is children, elderly people or couples. There is something for everyone and all one needs to do is reach the place and enjoy all this.

Freeport, the capital city of the Bahamas Island is a wonderful tourist destination and anyone who comes to this island is bound to go back to the place again. Now I love fishing and all my fiends have assured me that this is the perfect place for fishing. My fishing equipment is the first thing that I am going to pack; least I forget this in the excitement. My friends have told that the white beaches which is completely litter and stone free is a treat and one can sit there for hours and hours, just soaking in the sun and enjoying time with nature. Many other water activities like swimming, diving, snorkeling and scuba diving just lull all your senses and help you enjoy being with nature.

Now choosing a travel agent for the vacation seems to be a tough task. I have scouted the web and have come across some tour operators and they are offering very good rates for the tour. In fact some of the operators are also offering discount Bahamas vacation package. This is just perfect for someone like me who is a little bit short ion the financial aspect. In fact you can also opt for holiday loans if you wish for your dream vacation. After all it is not everyday that one gets the opportunity to go for a dream vacation with the entire family. I made arrangements for all hotel bookings well in advance; I do not want any last moment hassles and delays when I reach there with my family.

The natural beauty of this island is just amazing and if you are planning to go there with your spouse for honeymoon, then this is just the perfect destination. The market at Freeport is another attraction and I have been told that one can buy beautiful mementos to carry back home for friends. Now I have made all the arrangements for this vacation to Freeport Bahamas, I just can’t wait to go there and relax with my family. I am eagerly looking forward to this.

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Disney Savings Guide – Find the Best One For Your Disney World Vacation

It seems like only yesterday that we let our then 7 year old daughter know that we were finally “going to Disney World”. The memory of her squeals and excitement are with me to this day. We had saved for a long time in order to be able to take this trip, and had a wonderful time when we went. I learned a great deal about the best way to plan a Disney vacation, and quickly realized that in order to have an affordable Disney family vacation, there was a lot of research involved. And I also learned that a Disney savings guide was essential if I wanted to save any kind of money on this trip at all.

It can be challenging to choose the best Disney travel guide though, because there are so many! They all look promising, with colorful pictures of happy families having the time of their lives. But which ones will actually help you save money on your Disney vacation? This article will review some of the most popular, and provide my opinions on what each has to offer.

To begin, there is Birnbaum’s Walt Disney World, the Disney-approved, classic travel guide. This was the first guide that I bought for our initial trip, and it was a helpful beginning to my planning. With great pictures, some nice maps that help the Disney novice to become familiar with the layout of the parks, and reviews of the major rides and attractions, it is a great start to learning all about Disney World. However, it does not provide much information about how to save money: since it is the “official” Disney vacation guide, there is not much discussion about non-Disney options for food or lodging. So, while this is a great guide to start with, particularly for your first visit, it would not be my first choice for a good Disney savings guide.

Probably the most well-known of the many Disney World vacation guides is the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. It is also arguably the most comprehensive guide as well, at well over 800 pages. There is a lot of information in this travel guide, as the author thoroughly covers nearly every potential aspect to a trip to the Orlando area in extensive detail. And it is unbiased as well, which is appreciated by many who want to know more than the Disney perspective. The author does an admirable job of providing lots of options for saving money, and it can be a very helpful option for a Disney savings guide. With all the detail in this book however keep in mind that it will not be a little guide that you will want to take to the parks with you.

The travel guide that I have found to be the most useful in terms of saving money on a Disney vacation is the Ultimate Disney World Savings Guide. This is actually an e-book that was written by a former Disney castmember, and I have appreciated the “insider” information that has been very helpful in planning an affordable Disney vacation. The author shares a great deal of cost-savings tips and ideas that can potentially save the Disney vacationer hundreds of dollars. This book provides the money-saving strategies that make it an excellent choice for a Disney savings guide. Now if an e-book is a new concept for you, let me just say that I love the flexibility that an e-book offers: being able to download it immediately, reading through, and then printing out only what I need/want to take to the parks with me for reference.

While there are probably hundreds of Walt Disney World travel guides, if having an affordable Disney vacation is important to you, then the Ultimate Disney World Savings Guide is my recommendation for a truly excellent Disney savings guide. Well organized, easy to use, with lifetime access to the author’s website for the most current Disney updates, and literally hundreds of money-saving tips and strategies make this guide, in my opinion, a must-have for saving money on your Disney vacation.

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Next Holiday Destination – Mauritius

David Murray, travel writer made an interesting reference to Mauritius with a quote by Mark Twain in his article. “You gather the idea that Mauritius was created first, and then heaven; and that heaven was copied after Mauritius.” This is undoubtedly true when I spell the name of this land as More-Riches – more nature, more riches.

I don’t need to write in shells how beautiful Mauritius is, nor do I need to tell you it is difficult to differentiate the blue of sky and the blue of the water. One land, lot of sand, some beach you got to reach, so next holiday, Mauritius on plan.

Holidays in Mauritius is a well rounded package of fun and excitement. If you are a sea lover then Mauritius is a place to be. Water sports, beaches, sunsets or high cliffs. How would you like to arrange these activities on a memorable Mauritius Holiday trip?

Water sport – Scuba diving, wind surfing, water skiing and sailing; trendy bars, cool shack, all that you want and all of that in a luxury Mauritius holiday. How about deep sea fishing? Exciting! Blue or black marlin, sharks, yellow tuna, the Bonitos, the bécune or the barracuda, you fish all these on your holidays to Mauritius.

Beaches – Mont Choisy beach, the long stretch of white sand, casuina trees and turquoise color water. Belle Mare beach, calm waters, deep lagoon, and the dodo birds with proper mortgage offer can get you port a boat. Beaches like Trou-aux-Biches Grand Baie and Pereybere beach are some beaches you could go to with your family on a luxury holidays to Mauritius.

Sunsets – a picturesque sunset at Tamarin village is an ideal detoxifier. Surfing and catching up with dolphins is popular here. A luxury Mauritius holidays with simple ideas of luxury makes the trip memorable.

High Cliffs – the Valriche Nature Reserve, a rugged beauty with attractions such as jeep safaris, nature treks and quad biking rounds up a complete package of holidays in Mauritius.

High cliffs, deep sea, wide beaches and the beautiful sunset also share the landscape with beautiful parks and aquariums. Some places of interest like the Jardin Botanique de Pamplemousses, The Bird Garden of Casela, Le Val Nature Park and many more are places to watch out for when you go for holidays to Mauritius.

That’s not all; Mauritius is really about More-Riches. Apart from shopping in Curepipe tourists visit the Trou aux Cerfs crater, this crate floor is heavenly loaded wood and has a tarred road around the rim.

Mauritius Holidays have more thrills to offer how about Karting at the Kart Loisir, situated at La Jouliette, Petite Rivere. Enjoy Italian and Mauritius cuisines at the open restaurants and the scenic view of Port Louis. Another dose of thrill is the Vanilla Crocodile and Tortoise Park located in the south in a village called Riveières des Anguilles. It has giant bamboos, banana and palm trees grow. More than a thousand Nile crocodiles wait to say hello to the tourists.

Another scoop of fun in your bowl: the water park attraction. The excitement does seem to stop. For Luxury holidays in Mauritius look out for the prices and buckle up for maximum excitement.

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Halloween Candy Review: What to Eat When You Just Can’t Say No

‘Tis the season of candy, goodies and big family meals. What starts the cascade of holiday festivities, but our childhood favorite…Halloween! Halloween is one of those holidays that regardless of age I have to admit I look forward to. Really, what is cooler than free candy?

So, let’s be honest here. I have often seen the healthiest of healthy people grab a mini snickers from the office Halloween candy bowl. We’ve all most likely done it. I’ll admit it, I am a wellness professional and I eat candy. However, my definition of candy might differ a bit from the norm. When I eat a sweet I try hard to eat ones that in some shape or form have some positive health benefits. However, the office candy bowl may not offer 70% dark chocolate squares. So, if you know you will be tempted, what are the “best” options to choose from? Here are a few of my go to tips as I wade through the candy bowl:

  • Size does not always mean fewer calories. Take a Butterfinger for example. A “fun size” Butterfinger has 100 calories! Compare that to a “fun size” 3 Musketeers that only packs 63 calories.
  • Fruity candy can be deceiving. While it may be “fat free”, it is often filled with a lot of artificial colors and flavors. For the most part there isn’t a way around this unless you can get your hand on some of the more natural or organic candy brands like YummyEarth. In fact, you would be better off with one “fun size” candy bar vs. 5 handfulls of sugary candy. Consider this: Starburst has 204 calories and 4 grams of fat for 10 pieces! AND Starbursts are one of the only fruit candies that actually contain fat!
  • Simple is often a good sign. Take a York Peppermint Pattie for example. One FULL, BIG Pattie is only 140 calories and 2 grams of fat. Compare that to any FULL size candy bar and you usually have the Pattie as your winner! When you look at the ingredients in a York the list is short. Just like we have heard with any food, the less ingredients you see (and hopefully words you understand) often times the better!
  • Specialty versions are often bigger, heftier versions of the original. Take the Reese’s pumpkin vs. the regular Reese’s peanut butter cup. The peanut butter pumpkin is a whopping 170 calories compared to the normal 105 calories of your standard cup. Does it really need to look like a pumpkin to taste good?
  • Try candies that last. A lollipop is always a good choice. Normally lower in calories, you can keep the flavor and enjoyment lasting minutes!

I know how fun Halloween can be for young and old alike, this year try to have your fun and eat your “good” candy too!

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Amsterdam City Vacation Packages – Make it Your Next Destination

Amsterdam is known as a haven for hippies. It has since moved to become a larger economy and successful cosmopolitan business centre. The hippie era was the 60s and 70s when Amsterdam took its name from hippie haven of free culture for all. Most people visualize this expired idea even today. The new economy has brought prosperity evident throughout the growth of business areas and the general transformation of the landscape that surrounds the old town houses and canals.

With over one million population, the transformation of Amsterdam of a hippie haven to a buzzing business city is not yet complete. The culture of freedom of thought and collective life has not disappeared. Only free culture is not a branch of legal semi toxic plants and exotic, but a by-product of successful economic growth today.

Today in Amsterdam does not welcome the young hippies who think getting high on hash is a part of culture of Amsterdam but does prefer the young people with spending power. Not that you cannot smoke hash in Amsterdam, but gradually has become a city where smoking hashish and enjoy the city without great damage to the pocket.

Amsterdam historically has been a major trading post during the colonial times, the reason why you will find scattered town houses around the otherwise neatly aligned canals. The then wealthy tradesmen made these. Today these houses mostly house smoke shops, exotic nightlife and a string of brothels. This historical irony has been taken in stride by the local populace and by a collective decision licensed the brothels and the sale of hash in licensed coffee shops. These are a major tourist attraction today. It would be wrong to think that the locals are addicted or are always high on marijuana. They are busy planning and remodeling a few town houses into various centres of innovative business, they are busy biking around or tasting ethnic food or just relaxing and watching life from the sidelines while reading newspapers on a sidewalk cafe.

Amsterdam has its own charm that casts a spell when you the see close to 1200 bridges light up over 150 channels. The glory of Amsterdam charms is that even when it emerges from the mist in the morning. The day could not be more perfect for when visiting the floating flower market, Rembrandt Museum, the Jewish Historical Museum and the obvious social and joints such as discotheques, brown cafes, etc. English is the most common language used in Amsterdam, a significant portion of the population speaks it fluently. The basic attitude of the people here are very friendly and cheerful as one can chat with locals in a place in the course of a beer.

Each province of Netherlands has its own tourist organization strewn around with multilingual attendants. These Associations for Foreign Travel, as they are called or in short VVV (fay-fay-fay), book accommodations, help making travel arrangements and keeps the visitor abreast with latest programmes. They also publish Amsterdam Day by Day, a monthly magazine stating programmes for the month for a mere $2.50.

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Is the Water Safe to Drink in Pattaya?

When we book our holiday one of the first questions we ask ourselves is “Is the water safe to drink”? There is no simple answer. Do you mean will it kill you or just give you an upset stomach or diarrhoea? Most of the time a simple upset stomach is all people will experience and can quickly be dealt with by a visit to the local pharmacy. If your symptoms last more than a day or two then a visit to Pattaya Memorial Hospital is advised and proper medical attention sort.

I doubt very much that drinking a glass of water from the tap in your hotel room will do much harm however nearly all the hotels in Pattaya supply two bottles of complementary drinking water. If you drink lots of water like I do, to stave of dehydration or to prevent the inevitable hangover. You can purchase bottled water from 500ml up to 5 litres) from any 7Eleven or Family Mart, mini market. There are also drinking water vending machines on many street corners.

Can I brush my teeth with water from the tap? Yes. It is perfectly safe for brushing your teeth and for bathing in. For the majority of people that have drank the tap water it is only the different mineral content that gave them a upset stomach. One glass is hardly likely to kill you however, if you are at all concerned about the quality of the water in Pattaya or indeed Thailand and the associated risks please talk to your doctor before you travel.

Can you drink the tap water in Pattaya? The simplest answer would be no! Have a safe, and healthy holiday in Pattaya.

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Grand Bahamas Island – A Perfect Spring Time Destination!

Grand Bahamas Island is a perfect getaway destination. This beautiful island is located near the Atlantic Ocean. There are more then seven hundred islands, which make your vacations quite thrilling. The meticulous beaches and adventure sports satiates the senses of both adventurous and romantic people. Few of the must visit islands are; Abaco, Long Island, Grand Bahamas Island and Cat Island. Nassau, the capital is awe-inspiring, its natural beauty compel you to visit this place time and again. The best time to visit this island is spring time. The weather is pleasant, making it comfortable for the stay and other adventurous sports. So, in next spring vacations don’t spend too much time deciding the destination.

Here, you will find two kinds of beaches, activity beaches and secluded beaches. On activity beaches, as the name suggests offer you many fun filled activities like snorkeling, parasailing and windsurfing. Some of the popular activity beaches are Taino Beach, Lucaya Beach and Xanadu Beach. The spectacular white beaches and the deep sea fishing are the major attractions of this island. Fishing lovers would never like to miss this destination.

As for the secluded beaches, you will enjoy being their, but you will enjoy more in exploring the treasures hidden in the sands of those beaches. If you really want to enjoy on a secluded island, go towards southeast or southwest of the island. Gold Rock Beach a part of Lucayan National Park is one of the popular secluded.The nightlife offered by Grand Bahamas Island is awesome. There are variety of night clubs and pubs, where life seems to be turned into an ultimate euphoria. You can even enjoy a romantic moon dance on the beaches of these beautiful and meticulous beaches.

You can even enjoy shopping on the beaches and in the exclusive markets where you can shop exquisite gift items. Port Lucaya Market place and International Bazaar are the two important shopping areas. You can enjoy the taste of local handicrafts and even find the licensed hair braiders.

Honeymooners find the romance in the cool sea breeze that gushes past them when on a walk. You will always find honeymooners on this exquisite island, enjoying the bliss of each others company. These days many couples even plan their wedding on the exclusive secluded beaches of Grand Bahamas Island. A wedding experience on a beach is unique and quite fun filled.

Most people dream of going to Bahamas for a vacation, because of the serenity and the closeness to nature. A vacation to Bahamas is surely not very expensive, as there are many discount Bahamas vacation packages available. If not this, you can even go in for loan for a vacation. When you plan your vacation to Grand Bahamas Island, be very careful about the tour operator. Make all the due arrangements well in time, so as to avoid any inconvenience. Specially, if you plan your vacation during spring time, be extra cautious. As during this season, the chance is quite high that you will find no hotel or resort for a comfortable stay. So make all the arrangements beforehand, to enjoy the vacation to its full.

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Christmas Carol Coaching – Help to Get Ahead at Holiday Time!

I’ve always been fascinated by situations where art imitates real life and right here is a perfect example, which links Christmas and business & personal development.

If you want to read about a serious piece of dodgy people management (bordering on potential litigation); a man all adrift with the world and himself; shown how to do it by three visionary experiences (and with a brilliant example of supportive team-building thrown in); and then the ultimate Christmas ‘shift’? These are all brilliantly described for your pleasure in a seasonal read of ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens.

Here, Dickens brings out all of these wonderful examples and takes us through the life of Scrooge, ending in an exemplary and joyful outcome for a guy whose life is changed for the better, forever (despite years and years of baggage).

From an opening of how not to treat your ‘team’ (‘You’ll be wanting a whole (Christmas) day (off) tomorrow, I suppose?’ – and I particularly like the image of the poor clerk keeping warm with a candle!); through the solitary Christmas Eve meal; surviving the initial appearance of Jacob Marley as his front door knocker (what is the light given out by a ‘bad lobster in a dark cellar’?), the reader then experiences Scrooge taken through great examples of coaching by visits from the three ‘ghosts’ – exploring, in turn, his lost childhood, an example of how to really motivate and celebrate with your team of employees (the wonderful ‘boss’ Fezziwig) – and an understanding of what you may miss in your life if you don’t act now. Spot the analogies for yourself in a read that will take you a mere afternoon by a cosy fire – maybe with some mulled wine thrown in!

And once you’ve considered this Dickens novel, how many other works of fiction could be considered part of the Coaches’ world?

I’ve found over the years, through my love of reading, that there are many people skills issues highlighted or to be construed from the world of fiction (not forgetting film – what brilliant management skills metaphors in ‘A Bugs Life’ or how to motivate an unruly bunch as Mel Gibson did in ‘Braveheart’, to name but a couple). In almost every book you read, or film you watch, if you look out for the broader context, there are riches to behold. Many of these are worth enjoying and where appropriate, sharing with colleagues and friends, just to put another angle on a situation.

Do have a break and enjoy ‘A Christmas Carol’ at this seasonal time of year – oh yes, and have a great holiday too!

Enjoy the book and feel free to let me know of any other examples you might care to share that I’d want to read myself!

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The Ssesse Islands – Uganda’s Prime Destination

The Ssese Islands are about 12000 years old and according to the Buganda culture, they are referred to as the Islands of the Gods. Traditionally, all Buganda Kings were supposed to visit Islands and pay Homage to the Gods “Baluubale”, whose shrines are situated and built on the islands like Bukasa Island is home to Musisi; spirit of Earthquakes and Wanema; spirit of physical handicaps. While Bubembe Island is home to Mukasa; spirit of Lake Victoria also traditionally referred to as “Nalubaale”.

The 84 prime islands located northwest of Lake Victoria differ in size and activities with some being small and deserted, while others are large and densely inhabited. These are hilly with dense forests, retaining a secluded and serene atmosphere creating the perfect destination for relaxation, sport fishing and a birders haven.

The separate Islands, which can be reached either via Nakiwogo in Entebbe, Masaka to the Bukakata ferry OR By Charter flight to Bukasa Island with an Airstrip, are experiencing a renaissance in tourism activity; increasingly becoming a popular tourist Destination in Uganda.

The ferry leaves Bukakata at 0800, 1100 and 1700 and leaves the Bugala landing site at 1000, 1430 and 1800 from Monday to Saturday, and the journey takes 45 minutes. Transport from Kampala to masaka is by private car Hire, taxi or by Bus and you can hire a speed boat from Entebbe to the Islands.

Bugala Island being the largest extending over 200km and measuring 43km from East to West and a home to the kalangala district Headquarters, and Bukasa Island the second largest island have several activities including forest walks with Primate Viewings of different monkey species like the Vervet monkey, the Bush-Buck and the black and white colobus monkey, sport fishing in particular for the Nile Perch, the endemic creek cat and butterfly species, beautiful walks around the Islands on the white sand beaches and rainforests, Boat rides to other Islands, prolific Birdlife including water and forest Birds including robin-chats, weavers, Turacos, brown throated wattle eye, hornbills, Barbets etc, Beach activities like cycling, swimming, canoeing, volleyball etc, visits to the Speke’s Fort built in 1962, fishing villages, Bat cave with thousands of Bats and visits to palm tree and pineapple farms.

The Bugala Island, Bufumira and Bukasa Islands the in habited Islands, have many established accommodation facilities including Luxury lodges as well as camping grounds to suit most tastes and Budgets. Mirembe resort has a wide number of rooms as well as camping space. Pearl gardens beach has the Hornbill campsite, Ssese Beach hotel has 18 cottages and a separate house with 2 family cottages and 3 triple rooms. Islands club has luxury wooden chalets in a cool atmosphere, Panorama budget lodge with a beautiful garden; the Palm Beach Hotel has cottages and a dormitory tent. In Bukasa Island, the Agnes Guesthouse offers accommodation with friendly views. The facilities have open restaurants for food and Drinks.

The Ssese Islands are peaceful, with more than ethnic tribes and languages. They offer crystal clear lakes, beautiful rainforests, beautiful beaches and here you can discover the wild romantic Africa of your dreams with warm and hospitable people, in a land waiting to be discovered…You couldn’t ask for more in an exotic holiday destination!

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Staycation Guide: 5 Places In The UK That Will Make You Feel You Are Abroad

Staycations are again on the rise more, and more Brits are deciding to stay home for their holidays. But where in the UK should you go if you have never had a staycation before or fancy trying something new? Here is my staycation guide is here to help.

The UK is a dynamic place full of history, natural beauty, dramatic coastlines and historical cities. Every corner has such an individual identity that no two places are alike. Some UK destinations might even give you a little taste of Europe! Here is how:

Love The Algarve? Try Devon

Branded “the English Riviera”, Devon is fantastic for families and beach holidays. It is also home to five areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, UNESCO Sites and Natural Parks.

For a cultural city break, try Plymouth or Exeter, both rich in Roman history. It it’s the relaxed coastal life you want, try South Devon. For surfing, go for North Devon and Exmoor. And for the true Riviera experience, try Torquay, Paignton, and Brixham. There are also many smaller towns and villages worth exploring if you fancy going for a drive.

Love Tuscany? Try Lancashire, Yorkshire And Cumbria

North West England and the region of Tuscany in Italy share two things in common: beautiful green panoramic views and maxing food.

Famous for its artisan food, locally sourced produce and niche eateries, the counties of Lancashire, Yorkshire and Cumbria, will entice any foodie traveler with their food festivals and farm shops galore. To work up an appetite, you can visit the castles, museums, theatres or seafront towns or you can go hiking and take in scenery so beautiful that Queen Elizabeth is reported to have said she would like to retire here.

For more active travelers, highlights are the Yorkshire Dales, the Pennines and the Lake District, where you can try all sorts of sports from golfing to sailing and paragliding. For those wanting a peaceful hideaway, try smaller market towns such as Kirby Lansdale, Hebden Bridge or Clitheroe. And if it’s a sea you seek, try Whitby, Scarborough or Lytham St Annes.

Love Switzerland? Try Scotland

If you a partial to mountain ranges, lakes and a pair of skis, then Scotland is the perfect staycation for you. With beautiful scenery, imposing castles and interesting cities thrown in for good measure, both Switzerland and Scotland will give you jaw-dropping views. Switzerland has some of the most famous ski resorts in the world, Scotland has the best ski resorts in the UK. The Swiss have the alphorn and Schnapps; the Scots have the bagpipe and their world-famous Scotch whisky. Hell, the Scottish accent might even make you feel you’re abroad!

Jokes aside, Scotland is indeed a beautiful country, with intriguing and grand history, beautiful landscape and stunning natural reserves. Even Her Majesty has a residence here, Balmoral Castle. For a city break, both Glasgow and Edinburgh are famous for their nightlife and culture. And if you like to drive, we would highly recommend the drive from Glasgow to Dundee. The views are to die for.

Love Rome? Try York

The Italian city of Rome is one of the most famous destinations in Europe, known worldwide for its rich history and vibrant culture. In the UK we have our little version thanks to the Romans themselves.

Although York existed as a settlement before the Roman invasion, it was during that period that it was declared a city of importance. Constantine the Great was proclaimed a Roman Emperor here. Even going out for a pint will yield a history lesson in pubs that used to be churches or monasteries. In recent years, York has become famous for its retail and nightlife as well as its history, and although it’s much smaller than Rome, you will have plenty to do and see.

Love Berlin? Try Liverpool

Berlin and Liverpool share many commonalities. Both have witnessed their fair share of political and social change, but are today UNESCO Heritage Sites and European Capitals of Culture.

In the UK, Liverpool is the city with the most galleries and national museums outside of London. The birthplace of the Beatles, it also boasts a very strong art scene. On a more outrageous note, it has been said that the Liverpudlian velvet tracksuit is as infamous as the German beach thong! Liverpool is a vibrant and dynamic city, ideal for any art, fashion or music lover.

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Every Traveler’s Dream Destination: India

India is alluring its visitors since time immemorial. It bestows a jovial experience which is unforgettable to its visitors. The country is dotted with fascinating culture and traditions through varied religions and communities. India is representing a fusion of varied aspects and reflecting an example of unity in diversity to the whole wide world. Nowhere else in the world can one find such representation of humanity with varied customs, regions, castes, races and languages.

India’s beauty is enormous. It cannot be described in words. Therefore, one should experience the exclusive grandeur of this incredible province in person. It is advisable so that you can cherish it forever. This exotic nation comprises astounding changes in geographical regions. The changes in languages, cuisines, religions, attires, ethnicity and traditional way of living, while traveling will give an intriguing twist to the journey.

The culture, reflecting through every nook and corner, represents the true essence of India. It hosts an entrancing blend of the contemporary as well as the ancient. The most remarkable destinations represent the modern developments and an era old rich cultural heritage. Besides that, there are some fascinating historic sites that make it an absolute holiday destination.

Taj Mahal proves to be the most dominant attraction of this diverse country. Taj Mahal is standing as the most desirable wonder of the world. Every tourist should embrace the glory of Taj Mahal. Taj Mahal is the only monument which changes its glory in every hour of the day. Every shift of the hour makes it all the more alluring. Taj Mahal has different reflections under the sun. The splendor of this edifice doubles up at night under the moon.

Goa is a minute state in terms of geography. It is immense if it is observed in terms of tourist attractions. Goa serves as an ultimate tourist destination with all prominent facets. This tropical paradise is popular for its surreal beaches. The state beholds alluring surroundings. The beaches with glorious splendor affirm to be the pride of Goa’s tourism. The beaches are fringed by sheer natural splendor. It bestows magnetizing landscape of azure sky and emerald palm grooves. The place embodies a fusion of two different aspects of life – modern and traditional. It offers a unique lifestyle totally dissimilar from other parts of India. The lifestyle represents the influence from the east as well as the west. The infrastructure also depicts the same.

Kerala backwaters are the network of interconnected canals, rivers, lakes and inlets which serve as a predominant attraction. The backwaters of Kerala beholds spectacular natural splendor. The scintillating backwaters are always fringed with palm groves and thick foliage. This endows a serene ambience which provides immense pleasure. The place rejuvenates one’s soul. The scenic landscape with the emerald paddy fields and countryside, at the backdrop, is just awe inspiring.

Varanasi affirms to be the soul of Uttar Pradesh. Varanasi is an epitome of the religious perspective of India. Varanasi is a unique place which offers salvation. It is a place where the physical self meets its spiritual self. The place showcases a merge of the body and soul. It is believed that people who die and cremated here get blessed with salvation. They are liberated from the cycle of birth and re birth. The place holds utmost significance. Every Hindu wants to visit this place for once in their lifetime. It affirms to be a destination which represents life and death together. Varanasi is considered to be the land of lord Shiva from about 5000 year back. Since time immemorial, Varanasi is famous for housing the magnificent Ghats at the bank of river Ganga. Kashi Vishwanath Mandir is the most famous and most ancient shrine of the place. The temple is devoted to Lord Shiva who is the presiding deity of the city.

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Tips For a Perfect Villa Holiday

Renting a holiday Villa is a great way of getting all the things that make a great holiday in one place, for your family. Renting a holiday villa means that no compromises on quality or facilities need to be made, making a prefect solution for family holidays.

Here are 5 our our best tips to finding that perfect villa rental for you and your family

  • Take some time to do some research about the area you want to stay in. Have a look at Trip Advisor and talk to people who have been on holiday to that area before.
  • Whilst some people think that the free ads is a good place to start looking, do so with caution – what protection can you / do you have if you book via one of these?
  • Ask to talk to previous renters of your holiday villa, a good landlord has nothing to worry about and will happily ask people to get in touch and validate their claims about the property.
  • Ask questions about the property, when advertsing some landlords find they do not have enough space to describe their villa. Ask about the property, get them talking and telling you about the villa, you will get a better idea of the property and its suitability for you and your family.
  • Google the villas name and location, see what comes up. You may find out things that can alter your decision to go to a certain destination. Then again you could confirm that it it’s the perfect place for your holiday.

However you decide to choose your holiday villa rental, make sure when you find your perfect villa you book it straight away. Often people leave their booking to the last minute and lose out on their perfect holiday. 

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Myanmar – An Exotic Destination


Myanmar which is also known as Burma is one of the world’s most diversified and culturally enriched countries. Rudyard Kipling quoted that, “Myanmar is unlike any other country on heart of the earth”. Once you visit it you will know it yourself!

This country is well known for its aesthetic belief, spiritual profusion and religious sanctity. The places of attraction and various destinations are all marked with their individual uniqueness and they are bound to keep you entertained throughout your trip. To visit Myanmar, you can either go for the packaged tours that are available or simply plan your own tour for a rather more personal trip. But if you don’t want to miss a single place of attraction in this country, then packaged tours are your best options.

Entire Myanmar has a noticeable influence of religiousness. Buddhism is followed by most individuals or sects. This religion has a conspicuous presence in people’s daily lifestyle and customs. Their various traditional attires, utensils, decorative items and other unique things would interest you a lot. If you are a shopaholic, you can also satisfy your shopping senses by having a look at those.


1. Yangon:

This is where your flight will land when you board for the plane to Myanmar. This is the capital of Myanmar and the home for international investments. It is the most famous place of attraction for the tourists. With the progressing days and the rising tourist demands, it has the best tourist accommodations and restaurants. The hotels are quite luxurious and affordable. The restaurants here provide the best dining facilities in entire Myanmar. The popular places to visit here are Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon Village and Bogyoke Market.

2. Mandalay:

This is also known as the city of gems and is largely frequented by tourists and travelers throughout the year. This is the place where you can experience the rich art and culture of Myanmar. Puppet culture – Myanmar’s traditional performing art, has reincarnated in this place. Mandalay demonstrates the noble culture and heritage of Buddhism. The entire experience at this place will keep you overwhelmed and awed for the rest of your trip!

3. Inle Lake:

This place is famous for its unparalleled beauty and is absolutely a must visit for the all the tourists journeying to Myanmar. The Inle Lake redefines beauty. It is a pure exhibition of the exquisite splendor of nature. The lake is adorned by mountains and the blue sky. The Phaungdawoo Pagoda is a famous tourist spot for the five sacred Buddha shrines. Other place to visit here are Sagar Village and Pindaya.

4. Bagan:

This is an ancient city of the Mandalay region of Myanmar. It was the capital of Pagan Kingdom – the kingdom which unified the regions that comprise modern Myanmar. This place is famous for its lacquer ware which has great artistic value. Their lacquer ware is very light and water tight. This place was also home for many ancient royal inhabitants who used to hide their ornaments and jewels here.

Other Places:

Myanmar has many more places of tourist attraction like Namataung (Mount Victoria), Kyaikhtiyo, Mergui Archipelago, Mrauk and Ayeyarwaddy.


Myanmar is a unique place to explore and a very pleasing place to spend a vacation with your family and friends. If you look forward for an enjoyable family time or a place to relax and refresh your mind with your friends, then this is possibly one of the best vacation destinations indeed!

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How To Handle Thanksgiving Day Dinner Invitations

There was a time not long ago when the Thanksgiving Day meal was all about Family. Members of an immediate family would gather together, watch the parade on TV, eat the big meal and have sandwiches from the leftovers later that night. A few close relatives might show up early to help or just before mealtime and leave shortly afterward which was fine and expected, but no invitations were needed or necessary. Fast forward to today when the Thanksgiving Day meal is considered a big event by many people and a whole new complicated ball game. Who you invite to your holiday meal or the Thanksgiving Day feast you decide to attend can have immediate and even lasting social consequences.

Some say it started with extended families where the usual clear line of who was expected or invited to come to family Thanksgiving celebrations was blurred. Others claim that celebrities did the dirty deed by turning their holiday meals into pseudo-charity events which their closest friends and relatives were expected to attend with no exceptions. Either way, offering or accepting invitations to a Thanksgiving Day celebration has become a complicated process which requires a lot of forethought.

Let’s begin with offering invitations. If you are the host of a Thanksgiving meal, the last thing you want is a bunch of drama or hassles on the holiday. Begin your planning in late October with a long list of family members that you believe should or would want to be at your event. Make sure you take into consideration all the family dynamics, feuds and any past problems or uncomfortable situations created by mixing the wrong relatives together. Get feedback on your choices from influential family members that you trust. They may have the latest inside scoop on who is getting along and who is not that can help you make any final decision on which family members to invite and which ones you should exclude.

Once you have a good idea about who you plan to invite to your holiday meal, shorten that list by calling around to find out if your relatives already have their own plans or are willing to seriously commit to attending your holiday celebration. Once you have a short list of people who you’re sure will come, put it in writing by sending them an RSVP email, text or snail mail letter. I cannot tell you how many times I have had people tell me about situations where no-show family members told them later that they forgot they had that conversation just so they could accept an invitation from a romantic interest or a more influential relative.

Because there are so many single people out there today that have no relationships or strained ones with their closest relatives, a lot of Thanksgiving holiday meal hosts find themselves with a need to invite friends or even close coworkers to what would normally be just a family event. No one wants to be the holiday host that allows a friend or close coworker to eat a frozen turkey dinner or restaurant meal by themselves when they can invite those people to join their feast (and score a few personal points with them in the deal). However, those kinds of invitations require a lot of thought and a creative invitation process.

Most people do not want to admit that they will be alone or feel isolated on Thanksgiving for one reason or another, but at the same time they are probably hoping a friend or close coworker will find out about their situation and invite them over for the holiday meal and some much needed social interaction. That includes couples. Just because someone is single that does not mean they do not have a significant Other in their life. In some cases that Other might be as isolated from their family as their partner. Couples need love too on the holidays and might appreciate an invitation to a friendly holiday feast. When you invite singles, ask if they have someone special in their life that they may want to bring along.

Never make anyone you plan to invite feel like you are doing them a favor or just extending them an invitation to your holiday event because you feel sorry for them. Make the friends or close coworkers you plan to invite feel like their presence would be an asset and much appreciated by you and your family. If they accept your invitation it will be because you made them feel that they would be welcomed and not just invited. If they decline it will be because they have other plans and are not just embarrassed that you felt like you had to invite them because they might otherwise be alone on the holiday.

The biggest problem for the host who must make decisions about which non-family members to invite is to decide who will fit in and who will not. People that are able to mix well with others they have just met should be high anyone’s invitation list. Party Poopers who are likely to wander aimlessly around your house looking like they have just minutes to live and lack any social skills are non-starters, even if they happen to be good friends or close coworkers. You’ll never make people like that happy whether you invite them over for the holiday or not, so don’t even try. If you do, you will probably make your other guests miserable.

Another major problem that Holiday Hosts face is deciding the ratio of family members to invite, verses outsiders who will be attending their Thanksgiving Feast. At no time should you overwhelm immediate family members and close relatives with strangers. That will create a no-win situation for everyone including you. Personally, I would not want to spend the rest of my life having family members remind me of the Thanksgiving Day meal I ruined for them by having too many strangers in attendance. A wise host keeps the ratio at eighty per cent immediate family members and close relatives; twenty per cent everyone else.

The thing to remember about Thanksgiving Day meal invitations is that although your event is built around an iconic holiday, you are basically just inviting people to a dinner party that will tend to last a lot longer than most. Like all social occasions, the people you invite will make or break your event. It’s important to have the right mix of social movers and shakers, wall flowers, clowns and diplomats. Events take on a life of their own if they are not well planned and people tend to remember the best and worst of those they attend for years to come. If you take all these things into consideration, your Thanksgiving holiday celebration will really end up being something to celebrate.

If you find yourself in the not so unusual situation of being invited to attend more than one Thanksgiving Day feast, you have a big decision to make. No matter what your current job situation, friendship or romantic involvement may be, immediate family members and very close relatives should always get first dibs on your attendance. Employers, close coworkers, significant Others and friends come and go, but family members tend to be there for the long haul. It is unwise for anyone that is in good standing with their family to turn down an invitation to any holiday or special event to be with non-family members.

Sometimes declining a holiday meal invitation is harder than it should be. Most people who invite you over for their Thanksgiving Day feast will understand if you decline their invitation because you plan to have your own feast or have decided to attend one held by someone very close to you. However, that will not always be the case. Whether they are relatives, friends or close coworkers, some people who host holiday celebrations take them very seriously and declining an invitation from people like that can be very problematic.

There will always be people in your life that simply cannot take NO for an answer. When you find yourself invited to a holiday meal by someone like that, it’s time for some tough love. You just need to tell them you cannot attend and leave it at that. If you offer explanations or excuses, you are inviting them to try and talk you out of whatever reason you gave for not attending their event. I have been in situations like that and I can tell you that they will be relentless in trying to get you to change your mind. It’s like talking to a salesperson over the phone who has a thick looseleaf book of resolutions to any arguments or exceptions you offer against buying their product or service.

Once you make a decision about whether you will or will not accept a holiday meal invitation, stick to it! Never accept an invitation, then bow out because someone else who invited you later put undue pressure on you. Smart hosts begin inviting people to their Thanksgiving Day event by the end of October at the latest. People who call, text or email you a week before Thanksgiving expecting you to drop all your plans and attend their event are very poor planners. They have no one to blame but themselves when their invitations are summarily declined by you and others. So be smart, plan well, make the right holiday decisions and have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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Koh Phangan Thailand – Destination Tip

Koh Phangan is located in the Samui Archipelago – a group of about 40+ islands, in the Gulf of Thailand. The islands are part of the province Surat thani with the province capital of the same name. The only transit way to and from the island is momentary by boat or ferry, where you can choose between several providers and locations on the island. The neighboring island of Koh Samui, about 20 km. from Phangan and about 40 km from the mainland, is host to a domestic airport. Flights to and from Bangkok, Phuket, Malaysia etc. depart on hourly basis. The next airport is to be found on the mainland in Surat thani province.

Development on the island itself is progressing slow, fortunately for the locals and tourists, as this leaves most of the islands nature intact. Main population centers are found along the west and south coast. The infrastructure is in good shape, and you can rent cars or motorbikes nearly everywhere on the island. Don’t forget to drive on the left.

Money matters are not a problem anymore as every town or village provides at least one ATM. Expect prices for everyday articles to be slightly higher than on the mainland, most of the articles are shipped in. Accommodation can be found in every price range, though high end resorts are rare.

Main attractions for the majority of visitors are the local Yoga Schools with teachers from all over the world and the infamous Full Moon Party.

At least yoga schools are scattered around the island and welcome you to all sorts of meditations or fasting to get your inner self in balance again. Koh Phangans lush jungles and deserted coasts certainly support the idea behind it and so it is no wonder that year for year yogis keep coming back to this gem of nature.

The Full Moon Party, is happening on the sunrise beach in Haad Rin the easternmost settlement and most dense populated area on the island. Five to fifteen thousand ravers who dance themselves to tranquility every month and also provide a major share of the islands income.  Future will tell how the Thais will deal with this knives edge.

In the past it was a very spiritual approach to the island. Four hundred years ago a group of Buddhist monks were the first officially recognized settlers on Koh Phangan. They are said to have sensed the islands unique energies and founded a monastery, right outside what is today Thong Sala, the islands main port. In the aftermath of the spiritual frenzy even Thailand’s Kings were drawn to Koh Phangan. And the first to visit, fourteen times in total, was King Rama V. . His Royal insignia can still be found, carved in a rock, near Than Sadet waterfall. And even HM the King Phumiphon Adunyadet came to visit this tranquil island several times.

More than thirty beaches and plenty of activities make Koh Phangan an interesting choice. Surfing, Wakeboarding, Diving, Elephant trekking, Paint Ball, Fishing Trips, Yoga Classes, Kung Fu Classes, Archery and much more are available to make your holiday a fulfilled one.

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12 Awesome Benefits of a Skiing Holiday

The decision we make to embark on a skiing holiday is not one to be taken lightly, but it doesn’t have to costs a ton of money, and you don’t have to drag the family halfway across the world to visit some of the most breathtaking scenery on the planet.

The perception of half freezing to death and having to lug a mountain of equipment is shattered by the reality of lots of sunshine, wearing the right clothes and being able to rent top-class boots and skis at the resorts is you want to travel light. The sense of satisfaction and achievement that you get from a skiing holiday is second to none and provides a positive outlook on life.

For skiing enthusiasts, there’s nothing more exhilarating than a change of scenery, time away from work and the feeling of freedom from the drudgery of work-life that skiing with nature gives us. Skiing comes with so many health benefits it ticks the ‘great for you’ box in so many ways. One of the things I love about ski holidays is that it is something the whole family can do together, or I can do by myself. And for me, nothing beats a winter ski holiday as an escape away from the drab, wet, windy, dark days and nights in the UK. Summer skiing holidays are just as fun and can physically and mentally prepare me for the winter months ahead.

As someone who likes to try to keep fit, I love the hours and days spent twisting and turning down the sunny, snowy slopes. I know this works most of the major muscle groups to provide an all-over workout, helping me to build strength and stamina. It can take me all week in the gym to achieve the same work out as a day on the slopes provides me with. Not only that but as someone who hates Cardio work in the gym, skiing gets my heart working faster and provides a fun cardio session that I just wouldn’t achieve in the gym. Especially if I combine it with some cross-country skiing and get a bit of walking in.

Skiing improves fitness and stamina. Imagine a month on the slopes: boy, I’d have had muscles like Arnie! Sadly my ski holidays don’t last more than a week. But in that one week, I can become noticeably fitter, healthier and happier, skiing really does tick all of the health boxes. When it comes to working hard and having fun, skiing is one of the best sports you can do.

I have listed some of the health benefits of skiing below to help you decide whether a skiing holiday is for you:

* Boosts mood – boosts overall happiness and well-being includes physical and mental health.

* Encourages social interaction – people naturally socialize as part of the ski experience.

* Promotes deep sleep – engages your entire body leading to a good night’s sleep.

* Promotes healthy eating habits – naturally be more conscious of eating the right fuel, more protein, healthy fats, less sugar, more fruits, and vegetables.

* Skiing improves proprioception – the ability to feel the position of different body parts and their movements.

* Improves Balance and coordination – need to be conscious of slight movements and positions of your body.

* Strengthens bones and joints – strengthens knees and bones become stronger through the weight-bearing impact on the legs.

* Strengthens lower body muscles – works your inner and outer thighs, hamstrings, quads, and glutes.

* Improves flexibility – building flexibility helps to avoid muscle strains and sprains.

* Increases cardiovascular endurance – works the heart and lungs and burns calories aiding weight loss.

* Improves balance and core strength – challenges your balance and agility and helps to build that six-pack.

For me, skiing is one of those activities that anyone of any ability can do and enjoy. Whether you are looking for a new hobby to keep you fit and healthy or are considering taking up a new sport to keep you out of mischief, skiing could be for you.

Whatever your activity or experience level skiing holidays can provide entertainment and fun for everyone.

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Southend-On-Sea Is A Must Visit Destination

You have had a busy schedule and finally decide to take a vacation. If you are lost for choice then consider Southend-On-Sea. This is the largest town in Essex and one of the most popular destination sites in the area due to its proximity to London. The location of this tourist destination is in the rather driest region of Britain.

When on vacation, the major aim revolves around maximum relaxation and fun. There are several tourist attractions that will keep you amused. They are fun and exciting for the whole family revolving around their heritage and culture. Some of the attraction sites within this city include The Southend Pier and cliffs, prittlewell priory, central museum, jubilee beach as well as the planetarium.

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to visit sites that one may not have had a chance of visiting prior to your vacation. A good example is the planetarium which is an attraction not commonly found. Just like with all other destination sites, Southend-On-Sea is packed full of life and activity. There are various shopping stores and restaurants where tourists can indulge in the indigenous foods of the area. The shopping malls available in the area include the royal shopping centre with a varied range of unique shops like the Ottakars.

If you are travelling with family and more so children, you need not worry about keeping them entertained. The adventure island is a must visit attraction site. This is a theme park with several rides and exciting attractions that will amuse the young ones. The older generation will also have an opportunity to bring to life their youthful side. they are quite affordable, therefore parents and guardians alike need not worry about spending more than they initially intended.

Activities available in Southend-On-Sea city are immense. One good example is the Carnival. This tends to occur in august and includes processions, fairs, fireworks, dress competitions that are quite fancy, arts festivals among others. You will definitely find something to excite you and amuse you during this period. If your initial idea behind the vacation was to relax and have fun, then you will be much more rejuvenated and full of life

If this is not the type of fun that you like, there is still so much more you can enjoy. The city is filled with nightclubs and pubs that operate round the clock. There is also a cinema that is quite massive and features Hollywood movies. In addition, theatre lovers are not left out. The palace theatre hosts professional entertainment and shows. Those with a liking for large spectacles can enjoy the events and shows at the Cliffs Pavilion. These will include concerts, musicals performing artists, ballets among others.

There is so much to see and enjoy within Southend-On-Sea. With the numerous number of tourists flocking this city all year round, is an assurance that your vacation there will be worth every cent and time. Irrespective of age, preference, taste or liking there is definitely something for everyone at this tourist destination site.

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Why Turkey Is Your Best Option for an Awe-Inspiring Holiday

Geographically, aesthetically, culturally and historically the beautiful country of Turkey lies between Islamic Asia and Christian Europe. The country’s rich history has left it with an impressive array of monuments, cathedrals and palaces that are a history buffs paradise. Other than that, Turkey shares its coasts with two of the most beautiful seas on Earth- Mediterranean and Black Sea. These two have provided Turkey with a coastline that has few competitors in beauty and adventure. Regions like the Turquoise coasts off the Mediterranean, Istanbul and Cappadocia, etc. are hugely popular travel spots that regularly feature on must visit places across the planet.

With its distinctive European modernity and Middle Eastern culture, Istanbul is truly one of the ‘World cities’ that defies segregation on cultural grounds. This is because the culture of Istanbul has been influenced by both Europeans and Islamic regions of Asia. The city was formerly called Constantinople (324 AD) and was the capital of the Byzantine Empire or New Roman Empire. During this time, the city was a great centre for Christianity under the Emperor Constantine the Great. The Emperor and his successors left the world with several monuments like the Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome and Old Walls of Istanbul, etc.

These historical monuments are must visits during the Istanbul city breaks or tours of the city. The city also served as a seat of the Ottoman Empire and they left the world with impressive buildings like Sultanahmet Mosque and Topkapi Palace. Even with all its majestic beauty, the true taste and smells of Istanbul can be found in its narrow alleys. If you are adventurous enough, then take a tour of the city by foot, try out its cuisines and shop for trinkets at the Grand Bazaar. When shopping in the Grand Bazaar make sure you bargain and bargain well!

Cappadocia is a beautiful and enchanting travel destination in Central Anatolia region of Turkey. The area is quite arid and dry but its popularity lies in its awe-inspiring natural beauty. The stark landscape of the region only highlights the wonders of the region. One of the oldest inhabitable locations of the world, Cappadocia has been recognised as a historical heritage. The natural wonders consist of legendary fairy chimneys, the rocks of Goreme and Urgup, etc. that leave tourists dumbstruck. There are also several rock cut cathedrals and underground settlements that only add to the appeal of the region.

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Top Five Bachelor Party Destinations

The bachelor party is a common rite of passage for most soon to be married man. Over the years the bachelor party has gone from a night out with the guys to a full blown event. The bachelor party getaway vacation is becoming increasing popular. So much so that many travel destinations and resorts have gone out of their way to attract young man looking for a wild time. With that in mind let’s count down the top five bachelor party destinations.

5. Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

Looking for something more exciting then visiting the strippers and sitting around like a wallflower while you pound a couple back. Why not hit the slopes? Whistler Mountain has some of the best skiing in the world. It also have plenty of gorgeous Canadian ski bunnies. After the lifts close you can take in a game at Buffalo Bill’s. Be sure to visit Tommy Africa’s Bar, voted the top dance club by the locals. Finally, head to the only strip joint in town, The Boot Pub. The legal drinking age is 18 in Canada.

4. New Orleans, Louisiana

Where can you get away with asking a woman to show you the goods and not get slapped for it? Two words. Mardi Gras. Where better to spend a bachelor party than at the ultimate party. No man can truly enjoy Mardi Gras without participating in some beads swapping. This is not going to happen with the missus around so do your buddy a favor and head to the Big Easy with the guys. There are actually bachelor party organizers who host balcony parties for the event.

New Orleans is more than just Mardi Gras. Hang out on Bourbon Street and enjoy a “Hurricane” at the Pat O’Briens bar. And with a name like Temptations Club, it may be hard for any man to stay out trouble at this strip club.

3. South Beach, Florida

Sun, sand, and tons of beautiful babes. South Beach is home to the trendiest nightclubs in America. Stay at the Clevlander hotel, a favorite spot for bachelor parties. It is located close to many of the hottest clubs in town. The Fifth, Priv, and Nikki Beach Club are just a few on the stops on your club-hopping tour. Say goodbye to sleep because you will not be getting much here. After spending the day by the pool, or at the beach be sure to head over to the Madonna Night Club for some stripping South Beach style.

2. Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Montreal has some of the best strip clubs on the continent. Furthermore, Montreal is one of the few places where a full-contact strip is legal. What that means is for $10cdn-a-song you are allowed and even encouraged to touch your lap dancer. Pray you get “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” from Iron Butterfly. There are over forty strip clubs in the heart of Montreal and most are full-contact. Americans get the benefit of the exchange rate plus admission, dances, and drinks are cheaper than you might find in Vegas. In addition to the strip clubs, Montreal has a happening nightlife scene with plenty of popular nightclubs and pubs.

1. Las Vegas Nevada

Vegas, baby, Vegas! Could it possibly be anyplace else? This Disneyland of Debauchery is the number one bachelor party destination. What’s not love about this city that never sleeps. First class strip joints, hot nightclubs, cheap booze, and enough neon to burn a hole in your retinas. If you have the cash there is practically nothing you can’t do in Vegas.

It would be impossible to list all the fun things for you and your crew to do here. Why not start the day of right with a game of golf. Spend your afternoon by the pool admiring the “scenery”. Indulge your inner child and hit all the attractions. Test your luck at the Blackjack tables. All this can be done with a beer in one hand. This must be what heaven is like.

A little tip. A bit of planning could go a long way here. Have some idea of what you want to do because there is no way you can do it all in one visit. Check out a website like for information on all the options available for your bachelor party.

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Silly String – Tips and Tricks For Using This Party Favorite

Since its inception in 1970, silly string has become synonymous with birthday parties, festivals, and other celebratory events. Available at most party supply stores,the can of fun comes in a variety of different colors and is shot through an aerosol can. Whether you are using it for a surprise birthday party or letting the kids run amuck with it, here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind when using this party favorite.

  • When first sprayed, silly string is flexible and can stick to virtually any surface. After spraying it, the bright colored mess can be easily removed by simply wiping it. Once dried, it may become more difficult to remove.
  • If using outdoors, avoid spraying at, near, or around cars. The dye in the string could potentially stain or damage the paint on cars.
  • To remove dried strings off a car, use WD40 or a similar solvent, which can dissolve and remove the the neon remnants without inflicting damage to the car.
  • If by accident some is sprayed onto a fabric (such as clothing or upholstery) from a distance of two feet or less, it can stain so avoid spraying it point blank.
  • Use vinegar or a commercial stain remover to remove a stain on clothing or upholstery.
  • For Halloween or other events held at night or in dark venues, glow in the dark silly string makes an ideal party favor. Glow in the dark cans work best under black lights.
  • Make up new games using silly string or play classic favorites such as tag marking your victim with the brightly colored spray, or capture the flag using the string.
  • Silly string is the perfect way to entertain and celebrate on certain holidays. For example, instead of throwing confetti, spray it during a New Year’s Eve countdown or have an outdoor war with it at your annual Fourth of July barbecue.

Silly string is a great way to be festive, but there are also a lot of other great products that can turn an ordinary party into a completely hoppin’ party!

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Growing Tourist Destination – Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls, nestled between Zimbabwe and Zambia, is one of the most spectacular tourist destinations in the world. The Falls has been named one of the Seven Wonders of the World, and one can definitely see why. Known locally as Mosi-oa-Tunya (the Smoke that Thunders), it is one of the most beautiful sights in the world.

Over the years the Vic Falls has been gaining popularity, making it one of the most popular tourist destinations in Africa. Any well-travelled tourist or travel agent will be able to tell you that a trip to the Victoria Falls is a not-to-be-missed experience.

The Victoria Falls is one of the greatest waterfalls in the world, and is twice as tall as the Niagara Falls in Canada. The Vic Falls, as it is commonly known, is 1 708 meters wide, making it the largest curtain of water in the world. With breathtaking drops of between 90 107 metres, into the roaring waters of the Zambezi Gorge, the Vic Falls is as powerful as it is beautiful.

The area has been remarkably preserved in its natural state, inspiring visitors from far and wide. Essentially, people make the trip for the beauty and majesty of the Falls, however while it is best known for this beauty and majesty, there are numerous other activities in Victoria Falls for those interested in visiting this world renowned destination.

Vic Falls is spectacular throughout the year – the best time to visit will be from February to May. This is when you can witness the greatest flow of water. Be careful though – the heavy flow of water means things can get a little wet. Activities are varied in and around the Vic Falls. Activities range from romantic sunset cruises and elephant rides, to more specialised fly fishing excursions, and not to mention adrenaline-fuelled fun.

For the wild at heart, a 111 meter bungee jump offers a much needed adrenaline rush. White water rafting is said by many as being a not-to-be-missed opportunity, with the Victoria Falls rated as one of the best white water rafting locations in the world. Body boarding on the tempestuous Zambezi River is also an exhilarating experience.

Another worthwhile place of interest is the Victoria Falls National Park, situated in north-western Zimbabwe. This park is notable in that it boasts a rainforest which grows in the spray of the Falls. This rainforest is home to a variety of plant life, including ferns, palms, liana veins, and a number of others not seen anywhere else in the region.

The surrounding towns of Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe side) and Livingstone (Zambia side) offers much of what you can expect from an internationally recognised destination – hotels, guest houses, supermarkets, tourism centre and airports, making the area itself well equipped to handle the throngs of visitors it receives each year.

The Victoria Falls, whether for its mesmerising beauty, exciting activities, cultural experience or simply to bask in the sheer tranquillity of the area, is and will always be one of the most loved and cherished natural attractions that Southern Africa has to offer.

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Essential Tips for Family Holidays

Family holidays can be the most magical times of our childhoods, and they can be pretty magical for parents too – when they go right. A family holiday gone wrong can be a nightmare of frazzled adults and fractious kids. Here’s how to make sure you make magical memories instead of ones that you may rather forget:

Involve the kids at the planning stage

If they are old enough to talk then they are old enough to talk to about your holiday plans. Children should be asked about what their expectations are for a holiday and what they would like to be able to do. They should know where they are going – try to enthuse them about the location. You should have already given some thought as to why it will be perfect for the whole family, so tell them. Communicating expectations up front can avoid unpleasant attitudes and disappointment later – it can also help build the excitement for your very special adventure.

But don’t let kids make all the decisions

Of course, children (even bolshie teens) should not be allowed to rail-road you into doing something you don’t want to do. A common mistake people make is give into pressure from the kids and end up on a holiday (say to a theme park) that they never wanted to be on. Of course there will be some compromise to be made on all sides, but the best family holidays are the ones that everyone, adults and children can enjoy. And kids don’t always know what is best, of course. They may moan about an active holiday, hiking or biking, but when they get out there they may well have the time of their lives. That is why parents sometimes have to just lay down the law.

Be prepared

Make sure you’ve done your basic research. Make sure all documentation is in order. Always have water, wet wipes and snacks on hand. Make sure you have a first aid kit for any little emergencies. Use basic common sense and pack accordingly. Let children pack their own bags, to involve them and give them a sense of active participation throughout, but be sure to check young children’s bags to ensure they haven’t just packed toys and have got the basics too.

Keep the kids busy

Don’t give them space to brood or get bored. Kids that are entertained on holiday with active pursuits and activities will be far less likely to get grumpy or be naughty. Remember to involve them so they don’t just feel like they are being dragged from one place to another. They will simply be too tired out from all the fun they’ve been having. Keep things moving and everyone is far more likely to have a good time. A busy mind and body makes for a happy kid and happy parents.

But factor in rest time

Make sure, however, that there is enough time for the kids to rest and relax – no one would enjoy a relentless pace. This is their holiday too so make sure that between fun activities and excursions there is plenty of time for them to get some rest and relaxation. Even if they don’t know they are overtired – you undoubtedly will!

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Charting a Pathway to Success in Life: Setting a Course for Your Destination

Are you thinking about the future and feeling hopeful? How has the pandemic changed your view of life, and your dreams of the future life you hoped to achieve? Do you view the year 2020 as having caused a temporary setback, or resulting in something that will cause you to reset your entire life’s plan, because of the uncertainty which remains?

There is no question many people found themselves having to rethink how they planned their lives, and the idea of being successful during an international health crisis became more of a matter of survival. What was this year like for you? Could you still think of being successful in some manner? Did you have goals you sought to accomplish?

The topic of success is discussed quite frequently within the self-help industry and I do not want to claim to have any special secrets. However, what I want to share is a product of my work as an educator, and how I have helped students learn methods for becoming successful as they attempt to set and complete their goals. In essence, they are charting a pathway to success for some aspect of their life, and they are setting a course for a particular destination. It’s a matter of gaining self-awareness and self-confidence in yourself by establishing the right mindset, one which sets you up for success so that you are able to reach the destination you desire, whether it is completing a goal or a series of goals. No matter how simple or complex the goal, dream, or destination you have in mind for your life, you can achieve it, if you are mentally prepared for it.

What Does It Mean to Be Successful?

Whenever I discuss the subject of success with students, they often see it as a matter of being clearly defined: I have succeeded or I have failed. There is no in-between for most students, until we begin to analyze the concept of success. What I’ve found, through my own experience, is that success can be experienced in degrees, rather than absolutes. For example, I set a goal to finish a particular task by a certain date. When the date arrived, I only completed 90% of the task. I could state I failed; however, I could also state I was 90% successful.

It is all a matter of perspective and how we frame the words we use. If we use positive and re-affirming language, we become much more self-supportive, which sets us up for even greater success the next time we make an attempt at a task, project, or goal. This also helps to avoid the use of negative self-talk, should a goal or task not be fully met. Even if an attempt was made, and nothing more, that should still count as a success.

Do You Have a Sense of Self?

If you are going to chart a path for your life, or at least mentally prepare for one now, it may be helpful to first consider if you have developed a sense of self. What does this concept mean? It means you are self-aware of your strengths, along with the areas in which you need further development. What are your characteristics, those that cause you to shine, and those that can help you create the future you have in mind? Is there any aspect of yourself, whether it be your personality, traits, or characteristics, which can hold you back in some manner? If you are not used to thinking in this manner, it may be helpful to start a journal and record your thoughts about this subject for a week or two, and allow you to get to know yourself better.

You cannot develop an effective plan for your life if you really do not understand yourself and how to leverage your strengths. For example, when the pandemic occurred, I knew immediately I could navigate through this time period as I am compassionate and have an ability to demonstrate empathy towards others. My pathway to success involved being a student-centered educator, and rising to the challenge of helping learners as they navigated their way through a very challenging time. The area of development I had to manage was my own well-being. I had to make certain I maintained my well-being, to continue to offer my assistance and care to students. This is the purpose of you developing a sense of self, whether you write in a journal or take time to mentally reflect upon your strengths and developmental areas.

Charting a Pathway to Success in Life

You can find success in your life regardless of circumstances around you. The following strategies will help you chart your own pathway to success. These do not need to be implemented in any order, only considered and utilized as you read them. I use these strategies to check-in with myself on occasion, to help determine my ongoing progress.

Strategy: Taking Stock of Your Life

I’ve asked you to develop a sense of self and now, I’m asking you to dig a little deeper and take stock of your life. The purpose isn’t to take a trip down memory lane, rather it is meant to assess what successes you are most proud of, up to this point in your life. What have you accomplished that should be recognized and remembered? The reason I include this strategy is simple: We often remember the negative events and forget the positive ones. I’m certain as you begin to think about important goals you’ve met, including milestones and other achievements, you will have quite a list. This is important as it helps establish a positive frame of reference, and it reminds you that you are capable of finding success already in your life. Create a list and develop it in some form you can easily access.

Strategy: Determine a Direction for Your Life

If you are charting a pathway for your life, why not think about the direction of your life? What is it you have in mind for the future? You do not have to look that far into the future, but perhaps just consider two or three years ahead of you. What might that future look like for you? If you can give yourself some type of direction, then you can establish parameters for success, such as the establishment of checkpoints and goals. Remember, there is no right or wrong because you are the one in control of your life, and you get to decide what it is you want for your life. If you decide right now you want your life to remain the same, then that is acceptable as well. Whatever the decision is, establish direction.

Strategy: Develop a Supportive Belief System

What is a belief? A belief is a thought you tell yourself through repetition. If you are used to putting yourself down, and repeatedly use derogatory language about yourself, you are affirming a negative belief about yourself. In contrast, if you use supportive and caring words to describe yourself, whenever you think about your life and what you have accomplished, you are developing and nurturing a supportive belief system. The difference is quite important as it will determine how successful you are when you make an attempt to complete your tasks, goals, or projects. Beliefs will have a direct influence on almost every aspect of your life. That’s why I want for you to become consciously aware of them now, and to consider what you are thinking about yourself.

Strategy: Become Flexible, Confident, and Fearless

When you set a pathway for your life, you are now thinking about the future and what you hope it will become. Perhaps this involves you alone, or it may take into consideration your family as well. Whatever the case may be, thinking about the future now may cause a sense of uncomfortableness given the uncertainty of the pandemic. Yet your future has to do not with world events, but with your ability to set and achieve specific goals.

While there may be some aspects of your life that are tied to external elements, such as the economy or job market, for the most part your life is something you control. If you have determined there is a particular pathway you want to follow, and conditions will not allow you to complete everything you’ve planned, this is going to require you to be flexible and adapt your plans, rather than view it as a failure. Right now, you cannot predict what future conditions will be; however, you can create your plans.

In addition, when you have established a pathway for your life, which means you have looked ahead and thought about what you want for your life and set checkpoints or goals, you should now feel confident in taking this step. You have taken control of your life, rather than waiting several years and wishing you had done something earlier in life. No matter what plans you have made, at least you have thought about doing something, and now this sense of confidence will help you move forward and work towards reaching the goals established. If you can remain fearless, or refusing to give into self-doubts, worries, and natural fears along the way, you are very likely to find the success you seek.

Charting a Course for Your Destination

Your destination is the future you seek, whether it is a few months ahead that you have thought about, or a few years. Whatever the case may be, you always have control of your life, from a mindset perspective. You have an ability to plan the details of your life by establishing dreams, goals, checkpoints, and anything else that helps create a future pathway. Moving forward is a matter of being mentally prepared and remaining agile, ready to adapt when needed. You can and will be successful, as long as you never give into fears or doubts, and always acknowledge steps made towards your future along the way. Success is a fluid process and should never be measured in absolute terms. If you can remember that you will never give into feelings of failure again, and instead, you will take each progress point as a learning lesson. We are in the worst of times now, and yet, you can plan for the best of your life, simply through the power of your thoughts. There is power in hope, strength in words, courage in beliefs, and resilience to be found when you’ve established a positive and proactive mindset

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Halloween Safety for Dogs

Halloween is not only a fun holiday for children, but dogs and their owners as well! Dressing up, trick or treating and eating tasty treats can be the best perks of Halloween for humans and dogs alike. There are also many potential hazards and sources of stress for your dog during this holiday that can be easily avoided by following these few simple tips.

Dressing your dog up is one of the best parts of Halloween. From pirates to pigs, fairies to elephants, something about a dog dressed up in a costume is just too cute not to do. However, making sure your dog is comfortable and calm in clothing is key before deciding on a costume. Start by taking a simple article of clothing such as a pumpkin bandanna, or a light weight t-shirt like our Ghost Dog Tee. If your dog seems to like dressing up and is not bothered by the clothing, then a costume could be the next step! Make sure to choose an outfit that fits your dog properly. If it’s too tight, it can cause discomfort and cut off circulation. If it’s too loose it can get stuck on objects or cause your dog walking issues from tripping over the excess fabric. The best way to ensure a proper fit is to take your dog’s measurements then compare with a size chart. After you have accurate measurements, you can pick out one of our adorable costumes to dress your fur baby in!

Another safety hazard for dogs is all the candy laying around. Many people leave candy out in a bowl for trick or treaters, and a lot gets dropped from children running house to house. Make sure to keep extra close attention to what your dog is eating and keep them away from all candy and wrappers that could cause harm. In order to prevent your dog from going after any food in sight, stock up on dog friendly treats like our Trick or Treat Rawhides. These natural dog chews are safe and tasty for your dog to chomp, while providing an extra special Halloween treat! One major point of stress on Halloween for your dog is the constant ringing of the doorbell. Most dogs tend to get overexcited when the doorbell rings, so imagining it ringing all day! If your dog tends to get worked up over the doorbell it may be best to keep them at a distance by using a dog or baby gate to confine them to an area in the house they feel comfortable in away from the door.

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Kenya Safaris – Is Kenya (Still) a Safari-Worth Destination?

Kenya is a land of enormous variety and stunning beauty, from the teeming savannah plains of the Masai Mara to the Great Rift Valley, from snow-capped peaks of Mount Kenya to the warm azure beaches along its coast. Not to forget fresh water and salt lakes, extinct volcanoes and coral reefs. It is not east to imagine how beautiful Kenya is until you have experienced it.

As a vacation destination, Kenya has a rich diversity of natural wonders, wildlife, climate and habitats of its people with their rich culture. It is not possible to see and appreciate Kenya in a hurry, and the visitor may need to decide on a few specific areas of attraction at a time.

For the sake of comparison with other Safari Destinations, I have 5 points I think give Kenya some advantages. You might consider these points when trying to make a choice.

Cheaper International Flights

Kenya has been a regional commercial hub and safari destination for a much longer time compared to its neighbours. This meant, and still means that major airlines established routes from many parts of the world to Kenya. Major airlines like KLM, BA, Air France, Emirates Airlines, Qatar Airways operate regular flights into Kenya. Other regional Airlines like South African Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Egypt Air and Kenya Airways also offer flights into and out of Kenya.

This situation has in turn resulted in competition and efficiency for the various airlines. To the travelers this means affordable pricing for flight tickets. Thus, traveling to Kenya from North America, Europe, Asia, Americas and even Australia is still relatively cheaper when you compare with the other countries in East and Central Africa.

Great Wildlife Parks, Reserves and Sanctuaries

Even though there a genuine concern about the value of wildlife viewing in Kenya due to over-crowding and degradation of some of the major parks and reserves, Kenya still has a lot to offer. In fact, the concern about over-crowding is mostly related to the Maasai Mara Game Reserve. This marvelous reserve actually suffers from its own fame and popularity and also from the lack of control and regulation from the authorities in charge.

That aside, Kenya still has other parks and reserves that will offer fulfilling game-viewing experience. Parks like the Meru National and Tsavo have lower visitors and boost unique attractions both in terms of natural landscapes and wild animals.

Better still, there are many private wildlife sanctuaries and ranches that are smaller and managed better, usually with the co-operation of the local communities living around. Such places, like the Laikipia Plateau (Kuki Gallmann of the “I dreamed of Africa” fame lives there), Taita Hills Saltlick Game Sanctuary and Olonana Sanctuary, are extremely scenic and with considerable animal population.

Authentic African Traditional Cultural Experience

Kenya enjoys diversity in terms of people and culture. This diversity is so visible in the different ways of life, the different ways the traditional houses are constructed, the manner of dress, the rich and elaborate cultural ceremonies, dances, cuisine etc.

Of the 42 different tribes, there are those that have stood out when it comes to retaining their traditional identity and life style. In this regard, the Maasai and Samburu would be the best known. But there are still more, even though less prominent tribes like the Njemps and El Molo that cherish the lifestyle as it was centuries ago. A visit to Kenya, will offer you the chance, if you wish to visit and interact with such people as they go about their daily chores.

High Quality Hospitality Service and Medical Facilities

Kenya enjoys superior hospitality and safari guiding services in comparison with its regional neighbours. Having had a head start in the development of tourism infrastructure, the destination has developed a relatively reliable workforce with skills to handle the demands of tourists from all over the world. World-famous hotel chains like Fairmont Hotel operate hotels in Kenya.

There are training institutions (Utalii College) and trade and industry institutions that regulate practice and service delivery too. Medical facilities in Kenya would not rival those in the first-world, but are the best when comparing with others in the sub-region – East and Central Africa.

Great Opportunity for Beach and Safari Experience

The combination of 25 National parks, 29 Game Reserves, the Private Sanctuaries and Ranches with the over 480 kilometers stretch of white sandy beaches of the Indian Ocean, Kenya is one of the few African vacation destinations where one can easily combine both a wildlife safari and an beach vacation. The distances between the various destinations are manageable and bearable both on travel by road or by way of internal flights. A vacation blending all the cultural, wildlife and beach is therefore easy to arrange.

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Top Tips for Getting Away From It All, Without Actually Getting Away

I have just booked a holiday, the kind of holiday I have never booked before… an all inclusive week long spa break. I have almost always gone away in search of something; adventure, creativity, exploration (of self and the world), romance, culture, learning… but now I know all this is available on my own doorstep I feel less of a need for a holiday and strangely, I feel like I need to need this kind of holiday!

This got me thinking and in a recent survey I did in my own head, it seems that many people reach a certain point, let’s call it a breaking point, and decide they need a holiday. The ten main reasons for going on holiday, according to the aforementioned survey, were as follows;

1) Need to get away from work/life stress

2) To relax

3) To get quality time with loved ones

4) Habit – “we always get away at this time of year.”

5) A break from the norm

6) A new experience/different culture

7) To have some fun – nightlife, a sporting event, or just an adventure.

8) To get some sun/a tan (so that you can feel happy/look healthy)

9) It’s on my bucket list – “I’ve always wanted to go there.”

10) Facebook is showing that everyone else is doing it and I need some new pics to get everyone jealous.

The funny thing about holidays is that sometimes booking them seems to add stress. For example, people often book their two week break, and then spend months telling others (before and after) that they can’t afford anything else because they have just paid for/been on their holidays (which of course must include a whole new wardrobe and toiletry stock up). There are also those that worry about their work, either before they go, desperately trying to tie up ALL lose ends (they can’t possibly delegate), or whilst away, or when they come back to hundreds of emails. This kind of thinking is what makes some believe they can’t take a break at all.

So how can you get the same results that a holiday gives you, without actually going on holiday?

Here are my top tips for getting away from it all, without actually getting away:

1) Make the most of your free time – don’t just come home on a Friday night and eat dinner in front of the TV. Plan a date night; a quick drink after work or a dinner date does not cut into your chill out time, it’s part of it!

2) Schedule in a couple of hours at the weekend or an evening in the week to do something for you. Get creative, read a book quietly in a cafe, or simply sit in a warm bath. Make sure other people are aware this is happening and it’s for you… not to get away from them, but to reconnect with yourself. Equally, schedule in quality time with loved ones – a lift to football practice or food shopping with your partner does not count!

3) Think good thoughts and you really don’t notice the rain… and share that with others, smile at strangers.

4) Have a themed night in. Mexico, Italy, France, Asia..get everyone to bring a dish using unusual fruit and veg, get dressed up, find some tunes, decorate the dining room, rent a relevant movie… bring the culture to you.

5) Once a month turn a weekend into an adventure – jump on a random bus, stick your finger on a map, make a list of places you want to go and can get to, put the ideas in a hat and pick one, or simply take a walk and get off the beaten track. The key here is to be excited about what you might discover.

6) Have a night out with the girls – slap on some fake tan and bust out the summer time tunes as you get glammed up.

7) Focus on what you have got – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, grateful people are so much happier than those always chasing something else. Write a gratitude dairy every couple of days and reflect when needed.

8) Relax – meditate, swim, do a yoga/mindfulness class, have a lay in… whatever works for you, do it… and do it often.

9) Really look at things around you in wonder – see things differently and you will find many wonders already in your world.

10) Be silly – letting your hair down isn’t just for children or when alcohol is involved. Go dance in the kitchen and sing in the street!

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Spring Break Destinations Ideas – Sunny Beaches, Big Cities, and Ski Trips

It’s finally spring time again. When it comes to spring break destinations, Americans have always loved fun, sunny beach vacations. While beaches will always be popular, there are still a few other types of vacations that are appealing to spring break goers these days. Where are you planning to go? Are you trying to narrow down your list?

Here are a few ideas:

• Cancun – This really isn’t a surprise. Cancun is usually #1 on most lists. With its turquoise waters and pristine beaches, it’s no wonder why so many people flock to this Mexican destination every year. Airfare is usually cheap and there is no shortage of resorts offering discount rates. Hotels, restaurants, and bars really cater to spring breakers and party-goers.

• Miami – Those without passports can still enjoy similar weather in South Beach. You can relax under the sun during the day and party at night when the skyline neon-lights come on. The city has always been known for its reputation as a “nightlife haven”. Not only are there tons of resorts and hotels along South Beach, there are also many apartment and condo rental options.

• Jamaica – You get a few popular spring break destinations in this Caribbean island: Montego Bay, Negril, Kingston, and Ocho Rios. Jamaica isn’t all sand and water, either – there are rainforests and mountains. Head to Negril if you want to do some diving or snorkeling. In Montego Bay, there are many infamous all-inclusive resorts and British-colonial architecture. Kingston, the capital city, is notorious for reggae and the Bob Marley Museum.

• Las Vegas – If you’re not looking for a beach vacation this year, then head to Vegas. Just go on a road trip to Sin City or take advantage of discount airfare. There are plenty of things to do on a budget. Vegas is much more than just a city filled with casinos. The live entertainment is second to none.

• New Orleans – Interested in spring break destinations that offer a cultural experience? Just go down South to NOLA. It’s not just popular during Mardi gras season, it’s popular for spring break as well. This is a city that prides itself on culture and tradition, and you can experience everything it has to offer, from Creole food to ghost tours.

• Park City – Not everyone associated “spring break” with “ski resorts”, but if there is one destination that offers spring break goers a good time, it’s Park City, Utah. It’s especially appealing to families who want to spend spring break together. It’s not all about skiing either; there are plenty of other fun activities as well.

Final Remarks

Go to any of these spring break destinations and you’re sure to have a good time!

Expedia discount codes don’t last forever, so grab one now while they’re still available this spring! You can often get good deals if you book early. Shop around and compare vacation packages at popular spring break destinations and apply the coupon when booking the trip!

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North Cyprus Holiday Tips

A holiday to North Cyprus can be rewarding in may ways, for excellent weather and abundant sunshine, good hotels, plenty of places to see, castles, pretty harbours, ancient towns but also for the good food.

North Cyprus has a cuisine very similar to the Turkish cuisine but with some additional vegetables or dishes which have arrived with the traders over the centuries, like kolokas and molohiya and have become traditional. The use of herbs and spices is slightly different too. Otherwise they are very close.

Restaurants from other cultures are steadily appearing, Chinese, Indian and Thai restaurants. But, while these are all very appealing, if you like that kind of food, they provide the opportunity for the locals to sample these different cuisines. When you arrive as a visitor it is a rare opportunity to explore the traditional North Cyprus restaurants and their own cuisine. All these other cuisines you will find at home anyway.

Traditionally there are lots of starters or mezes involved. These can be almost anything but there are some standards that always appear, beetroot, white cheeses, mixed salad, Russian salad, humus, yoghurt and cagic, a yoghurt, cucumber and garlic mix.

For the main course in the meat section, lamb klefitico is a great favourite. The lamb is wrapped and cooked in the oven very slowly often with potatoes. It is very similar to the Greek Cypriot dish of the same name. Mousaka, on the other hand, can be and often is very different from the Greek version. The traditional Greek dish has a base of minced lamb or beef with aubergine, topped with potatoes and bechamel sauce. Here, mousaka may or may not have potatoes and does not always have the béchamel sauce. Sometimes it can be largely potatoes. No two restaurants seem to serve the same recipe. There are some very traditional dishes to select from including kolokas and chicken and molohiya and chicken as well as Imam beyilde, an aubergine shoe filled with tomatoes, onions and sometimes minced lamb.

Most menus also list a number of fish dishes so there is always a good a good choice for all tastes.

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Cyprus: An Attractive Intellectual Property Destination With Considerable Tax Incentives

Intellectual property is the field area of law that approaches the protection of the rights of the creators of original works. It includes everything, i.e. literature, music, inventions and trademarks. Generally speaking, the main purpose of intellectual property jurisdiction are to endorse the development of new technologies, inventions, arts and promote economic growth and innovation. That is to say, individual creators and inventors tend to have stronger incentives to elaborate their creative projects once they are aware that their work will be protected and they may have some financial benefits from it.

Cyprus established an innovative system that deals with the protection of IP rights in details. Precisely, it was set up an advanced system that guarantees that the outcomes of innovation and creativity are protected at a national, European and International levels. In addition to this, Cyprus is a signatory to international IP treaties and protocols such as WIPO, European Community Trademarks, The Patent Cooperation Treaty, Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial, Trademark Law Treaty a.o.

In Cyprus, the main mechanisms for intellectual rights protection are patents, trademarks and copyrights.

Patents protect a work from being created, traded or used by others for a particular period. In Cyprus, a national patent certificate is issued by the Department of Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver. On the other hand, a European Patent certificate is granted by the European Patent Office. International Patent certificates following the provisions of the Patent Cooperation Treaty are managed by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Trademarks protect the names and enable the identification of brands, products and companies. The logic of trademarks is to assist the consumers to distinguish the different competitors. Trademarks are established when a business begins using a unique mark to identify its company.

Trademarks protection is arranged in the following ways:

1. The provisions of Cap. 268 of the Cyprus Law offers protection at a national level.

2. The EU Regulation 207/2009 and the EU Regulation 6/2002 offer through Cyprus, uniform protection in the whole territory of the European Union.

3. Given that Cyprus is a signatory to the Paris Treaty on the Protection of Industrial Property, as managed by WIPO and a party to the Madrid Protocol, a global protection of trademarks is guaranteed.

Copyrights consider the protection of artistic works. Creators have exclusive rights to reproduce and exhibit their work in public as they wish. Nonetheless, it should be clarified that copyrights do not consider the protection of ideas but the way they are expressed. Copyrights enable creators to have financial benefits from their work. Furthermore, copyrights impede others from benefiting from creators’ work without their permission.

The Law N.59/79 on the Protection of Intellectual Property offers copyrights protection at a national level. In addition, Cyprus is a signatory to the Bern Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works that comprises an extensive range of rights, including software copyrights. The latter provides protection to all the Convention member states with no further action being required.

Cyprus “IP Box”:

In Cyprus, the “IP Box” scheme was introduced on the 1st of January 2012. Specifically, it is a package of incentives and tax exemptions concerning revenue derived from IP rights. Among the principle objectives are to endorse investments in research and development and innovative inventions that will be beneficial to the general public. The concept of “IP box” refers to reduced taxation on income or profits coming from license, disposal, or transfer of a patent.

The EU countries that apply similar IP taxations schemes are France, Belgium, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Spain and the UK. “IP box” schemes could be divided into two categories. The first category, adopted by France, the Netherlands and the UK, refers to tax reductions on qualifying income. The second category, adopted by Belgium, Hungary, Luxembourg, Spain and Cyprus, considers an exemption of a particular percentage of revenue.

Cyprus offers considerable tax incentives such as:

  1. Effective tax rate of 2.5% per year, which is the lowest percentages within the EU. Cyprus is more competitive than other countries. Precisely, in Luxembourg the effective tax rate is 5.7% and in the Netherlands 5%. As a result, businesses investing in IP assets in Cyprus can take an advantage of an effective tax rate of 2.5% from the exploitation of IP. At the same time, they benefit from EU and international IP treaties and protocols.
  2. Competitive amortization provisions for five years. This provision refers to IP rights obtained or developed after the 1st of January 2012.
  3. Cyprus has a wide network of double tax treaties.
  4. 80% of global royalty net income generated from IP owned by companies based in Cyprus is exempt from income tax.
  5. 80% of the net profit generated from the disposal of IP owned by companies based in Cyprus is exempt from income tax.

A Cyprus International Trust obtaining dividends from a Cyprus IP owner will not be subjected to any kind of taxation in Cyprus. Moreover, the trust may accrue income that can be converted into capital at the end of the year without any tax consequences for the trust or its beneficiaries, given that none of the beneficiaries is a Cyprus tax resident.

An IP obtains the benefits mentioned above only if the taxpayer is the owner of the IP, officially register in Cyprus or abroad. Moreover, the IP should be applied in the generation of income.

The efficient IP tax regime and the corporate jurisdiction of Cyprus are two important factors that constitute Cyprus a highly attractive destination for the acquisition or development IP assets. As it was elaborated above, Cyprus IP box offers attractive incentives for establishing a business in IP in Cyprus.

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Wipe Out the Holiday Debt Stress With a Bankruptcy Filing

Christmas is a very stressful time of the year but more than that is New Year’s. While people tried to fake their way through the holidays buying gifts they can’t afford for people they only see once a year. Once the new year rolls around, also come the holiday bills with it. When you thought you couldn’t be any more broke in December, you realize that you can when you get a pile of bills you can’t afford to pay. This is a cycle that happens to the majority of middle-class America every year. When we should be enjoying the true meaning of Christmas, we are more worried about going to parties and spending money we don’t have going further in debt. This is when people should really take a hard look at their lives and make the major changes necessary to get out of debt and become debt free. This seems like it might be impossible for most people but sometimes filing bankruptcy might just be what the doctor ordered.

The Christmas season is a tumultuous time and it’s really no surprise that filing for bankruptcy will be a very stressful time. The thing most people don’t consider is the stress they’re already under prior to the bankruptcy filing is probably way worse than the entire legal procedure. It’s like having a surgery, they worry coming up to it, many times, this is way worse for them than the procedure and recovery. People need to consider that these tough times will not last forever and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Especially if all the debt is going to be wiped out in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge. Sure credit might be a little bit tight initially following the bankruptcy discharge, but even that will return to those who stayed diligent getting their finances back on track. Getting all stressed out about the unknown is foolish because we don’t know what the next day will bring. Live one day at a time and when it gets really bad one hour at a time. My mom used to always tell me 90% of everything you worry about never comes to pass, so why worry.

There are some ways to eliminate stress while you are in the process of a bankruptcy filing. One way is to call your bankruptcy attorney and ask the questions that are bothering you. Many times getting those bankruptcy questions answered will calm your fears and help you sleep better. Another thing is not to dwell on the problems. Sometimes calling a close friend and venting about all your worries will do the trick. If necessary, try taking a walk and clear your head. If you don’t mind exercising, go to the gym for a few hours and exercise. It’s a well-known fact that exercising helps with depression as it sends endorphins to your brain. During this tough time, learn to enjoy music and the outdoors. Sometimes it’s nice to just pick up a book and go sit under a tree and enjoy the beauty of the environment. My dad always used to say when you’re upset go do a chore like washing your car and you will have the feeling of accomplishment in your life.

The bottom line is, worrying only leads to more stress and if you need to file bankruptcy, you can’t get around that, so you’ll need to make the best of it. Sit back and look to the future for the positives of filing bankruptcy like getting a jump start to become debt-free once again. Being debt free has become a lifestyle that people think is old-school. The truth is, it is much better than being buried in debt.

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Cancun – A Dream Destination

Cancun is the ideal vacation destination for all ages. If your think a good time is laying in the warm sun, going to the spas, shopping for souvenirs, going to an ecological park or just chilling out, Cancun is the one for you. For the nightlife crowd, Cancun is known as having the hottest nightlife anywhere. Cancun restaurants serve Mexican and international cuisine and can satisfy the most discerning taste. The amazing white sand beaches, the easy shopping, and the water activities and of course, the warm Mexican and Yucatan culture, contribute to make it an ideal getaway. There is only one Cancun and there is no other place like it! Cancun is located slightly West of Cuba in the Yucatan peninsula with the Caribbean Sea and it is also less than 2 hours drive away from the ancient Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, a must see destination.

Water Sports

Cancun is located next to the 2nd largest coral reef in the world, providing the adventuresome traveler with the most incredible snorkeling and scuba diving experience anywhere. You can even swim with the dolphins (but a bit pricey)! Cancun is one of the best places in Mexico to go scuba diving. Aside from the excellent diving services, the reefs off the coast of Cancun and the relatively calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico turns Cancun into an excellent choice for a scuba diving or snorkeling vacation.

A Tourist Paradise

Cancun is without a doubt the most popular of all the Riviera Maya tourist destinations. Every year, 3 million tourists visit Cancun. Cancun is a beautiful coastal city, full of luxurious hotels, beautiful beaches, and incredible nightlife. Cancun is a place that mixes the feel of an unspoiled paradise with the comforts of modern living. It is truly a place to experience. Cancun has perfect, gorgeous, powdery white sand beaches, and crystal, clear, turquoise, warm water!

The City

The City of Cancun itself (which is not the hotel zone) is 30 years old, and resides outside the hotel zone. But you can take a quick bus to the city and back from your hotel at very little cost. Avoid some of the seedy parts of Cancun where there are gangs; if you stick to the ‘tourist’ places in the City of Cancun, you should be fine.

The Hotel Zone

Cancun Hotel Zone is located in a tiny sliver of land shaped like a boomerang divided in two parts with each part connected to the mainland via a small bridge. The narrow fourteen-mile island section (Cancun Island) is populated with modern beach front hotels facing Bahia de Mujeres (Bay of Women), the Caribbean to the front and the green Nichupte and Bojorquez lagoons to the back.

Spring Break

Cancun is also a vacation destination for the college Spring Break crowd, and has a huge Spring Festival. The festival is really fun – as good as New Orleans festival. Cancun is the largest international spring break destination and attracts more than 300,000 college students every year. Also, Spring Break has plenty of fun for all different kinds of people. While there are a great number of places to stay in Cancun, not all hotels cater to the rowdy spring break crowd. But then Spring break in Cancun is a perfect way to relax after a semester of hard studying and just the thing one needs before settling down for another semester of studying.

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Top 12 Travel Safety Tips That Will Prepare You For a Safe & Successful Trip

No matter where your travel takes you, it is important to be vigilant with regard to your personal safety. It could be visiting friends out of town, driving to the beach, or flying to a foreign country.

One of the most popular times to travel is around the holidays when many people travel to visit family and friends. Roads are packed with cars, and airports are packed with passengers. Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination and try to be patient with other drivers and the airline. Everyone wants to have a safe day, but the holidays can be a stressful time for many people. Be aware of this fact and don’t be the catalyst that makes someone snap or lash out.

The following are 12 Travel Safety Tips that will help keep you safe!

  1. Research and read up on any type of travel restrictions that may exist where you are planning on going. Be aware of any travel alerts or travel warnings related to the region or country you intend to visit. Check with the US State Department to see if there is anything that you should be aware of. You should also look up and get the contact information about the US Embassy or US Consulate in the country or region that you are visiting. In addition, it is a good idea to consult with your local emergency management agency and the American Red Cross about the likelihood of different emergencies that could occur in your local area or the areas you travel to frequently.
  2. When traveling to other countries, keep in mind that some may have differently defined comfortable personal space distances than your home country. Research this before traveling so that you don’t make a simple gesture or make physical contact that has a vastly different meaning to the people of the country you are going to.
  3. Depending upon where you are going and the time of year is another thing to consider. Weather can cause a variety of safety concerns when you are hiking, swimming or biking in the summer to simply walking around when conditions become slick and slippery from rain, snow or ice. Allocate additional time to get to your destination.
  4. Take your time and learn the area so that you can feel comfortable with where you are traveling to as well as the surrounding area. Look it up on maps (Google Earth or Google Maps is great for this!) and see what is around you. Check out naturally occurring land formations like rivers, forests and mountains. Also note where man-made structures such as major highways, shopping malls and apartment complexes are located. It is important to familiarize yourself with the area in which you are traveling. This way you know where both man-made as well as natural barriers exist that could be significant in case a natural disaster or act of terrorism occurs nearby.
  5. You won’t be just walking around. Chances are you will also use some other forms of transportation such as cars, trains and boats. Each one presents a unique set of safety challenges. Keep your eyes in front of you and watch out for other traffic – on the road or on the water. There are many distracted drivers out there – don’t assume that they see you. Be alert so that you don’t get hurt. Watch out for hazards no matter where you are.
  6. You need to be aware of any specific health challenges that could exist in the country you are visiting. Some may require that you receive special immunizations before you are allowed into the country. This means that you may be exposed to threats to your health that do not exist in your home country. If you take any medications and will be traveling with them, get a note from your doctor that says what the medicine is, the dosage, prescription duration, and what it is for. Keep this with you and with the medication at all times. Some medications may not be legal in the country you are visiting, so do the smart thing and plan ahead.
  7. Another area you want to look into is health insurance coverage. Many domestic insurance plans cannot be used overseas, requiring you to purchase travel health insurance. Having it can be a literal life-saver in the event that you have to get medical treatment overseas. It can also help if you need to be medically evacuated back to the United States. The price for this coverage is modest, but could end up being essential if you need it. Plan ahead so that if you need coverage, get it! It is better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.
  8. Do not assume that buildings in other countries have fire alarms, fire escapes or fire departments that are as capable as those you are used to. Some may be better, but some may be worse or non-existent. Become familiar with this aspect when traveling abroad and know your exits and evacuation routes.
  9. Remember that you are more vulnerable when traveling outside your own home territory – wherever that may be. Once you leave your comfort zone and have to deal with new cultures and ways of doing things, you are at a distinct disadvantage to those who live and work in the area. Take time to learn local customs so you do not find yourself in an awkward or dangerous situation that may have been prevented if you understood what was going on more clearly.
  10. Be more aware at night and stick to well-lit, populated areas when traveling. Avoid alleys, dark streets, areas with poor visibility and places where someone could hide.
  11. Make sure that you have a valid passport and that you get any visas that you may need when traveling. Make copies of all travel documents including your passport and visas and keep them in a safe place apart from the original documents.
  12. Know the equivalent of 911 in any country you visit, and learn how to say “help me” in the country’s language you are traveling to.

These safety tips for travelers are a good way to kick off your trip. Remain vigilant and more aware than ever when you are in unfamiliar surroundings and especially when leaving your home country. Research things ahead of time and make prudent safety preparations before you even pack!

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Johannesburg As a World-Class Tourist Destination

Johannesburg is often ignored as a tourist destination in South Africa, with Cape Town and the Kruger National Park traditionally being the destinations of choice for visitors to the country. Part of the reason for this seems to be the fact that Johannesburg has not marketed itself as a tourist destination strongly enough, despite having a number of worthwhile and historically significant places of interest.

Johannesburg has the largest population of any city in Africa, and has a colourful past as well as an exciting present.

Johannesburg was the location of the Old Fort Prison which housed many political prisoners during the apartheid era including Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, Albert Luthuli and Robert Sobukwe. Today, visitors can go on tours of the Old Fort Prison, which has been preserved as a tourist attraction. The area where it is located is called Constitution Hill, and was named after the Constitutional Court which shares the property with the Old Fort Prison.

The Johannesburg Zoo is another worthwhile attraction for visitors. It is home to more than 2050 animals, and one of its unique offerings is its night safaris, which allow visitors to explore the zoo by moonlight and view the zoo’s numerous nocturnal animals.

Johannesburg also has a vibrant nightlife and a large amount of cultural and musical entertainment. The city plays host to a popular annual jazz festival, Jazz on the Lake, which takes place in early September and which features a number of well-known local and international jazz artists.

Another worthwhile activity for tourists is to visit Soweto, a vibrant metropolitan township on the outskirts of Johannesburg. Soweto played a significant part in South Africa’s history and has a number of historically significant sites.

On June 16, 1976, violent riots took place in Soweto when African school children took the struggle against apartheid into their own hands and protested against the government requiring them to learn in Afrikaans instead of in their home languages. Many children died during these riots, the most famous being 12-year-old Hector Peterson who was gunned down by the apartheid police. Today, the Hector Peterson Museum in Soweto is dedicated to the memory of Hector Peterson and the other children who died in the Soweto riots.

In addition to the Hector Peterson Museum, Soweto offers visitors the chance to visit Nelson Mandela’s old house and to eat traditional food and drink traditional beer at a number of restaurants run by locals. For the young and the young at heart, Soweto offers bungee jumping at the world’s only bungee jump between two cooling towers. Abseiling and rap-jumping are also on offer at the Soweto Towers.

Johannesburg has much to offer as a tourist destination, and should certainly be on the itinerary of any visitor to South Africa because of the varied, exciting and interesting attractions on offer.

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How to Cope With Relapses in Anorexia Recovery

As anyone who has suffered from an eating disorder will know only too well, recovery is not a straight line and there will likely be times of relapse. However, it is important to understand that just because a person relapses, it does not necessarily mean they will start back at square one.

Coping with Relapses in Anorexia Recovery

The most important aspect of coping with relapses is to have at least one person with whom you can remain completely honest. This is because anorexia thrives on dishonesty and you can very quickly end up convincing yourself that you are fine, despite this most definitely not being the case. We all need someone to challenge us, whether we have been in recovery for weeks, months or years.

Identifying Relapse Triggers

In order to get better from a relapse, you do not need to know what triggered the relapse, you only need to recommit to returning to your meal plan and accept any treatment you can find. However, it can be very useful to know why a relapse occurred, as this will help when it comes to relapse prevention planning in the future. For example, if you know going on holiday or being away from home for other reasons plays havoc with your meal plan, you can address this issue prior to your next trip with your therapist or eating disorder specialist.

Tips to Overcome Anorexia Relapses

If you are in relapse at the moment, now is the time to start challenging what you want out of your life. The truth is that you have two choices, either carry on down this path of destruction and end up back in hospital (or worse), or make a decision that today you will do everything you can to turn things around. Writing out small goals about changing eating habits and exercise levels can make a big difference. It is absolutely vital that you let at least one member of your treatment team know what is happening. If you can’t face talking, write a letter or send an email. Remember, anorexia is not going to change anything in your life for the better. It is a parasite which will gradually suck the life out of you, leaving nothing left but an empty shell. You are worth so much more than living with a life threatening disease. Embracing recovery again requires taking steps in the right direction on a daily basis. You are not alone and owe it to yourself to try again.

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Characteristics That Make a Place a Perfect Honeymoon Destination!

You might put all of your savings into buying a new flat or a new vehicle that might not even be a life time asset, though a long term one. If the house or vehicle does not give you the expected returns or satisfaction, then you will be seen cribbing over it in the future. However, investing in a relationship that would stay forever, if you maintain it well with the correct amount of love and care, can always be a better deal. The materialistic aspects of our life should be given less importance in comparison to the priceless bonds we share with people. A grand wedding followed by a romantically planned honeymoon will be always remembered and cherished. Nevertheless, you have to keep certain things in mind that help you choose a perfect honeymoon destination.

There are many things that make a place a tourist spot that is worth paying a visit and exploring. Similarly, several characteristics make a place a perfect honeymoon destination that is serene as well as vibrant at the same time. Tranquil surroundings, where a couple can find solitude at, is the very first point that should be taken into consideration, while choosing a holiday spot to spend some quality time with your partner. Nothing can be more appropriate than the most needed privacy during your honeymoon. Getting a little specific, who would not like to holiday by the beach or stay at a waterfall facing villa on a hill station during their post wedding tour? This means that the destination can be a beach resort or a hill station with a chilly weather. If you two are one of that adrenaline seeking couples, then heading to a tourist spot, which offers you an opportunity to encounter the thrills can be the ultimate place for you.

What can be more amazing than spending your entire life with someone, who possesses similar likes and dislikes as you? In such a situation, make sure that the honeymoon destination has been selected with mutual consent. This is the most important factor that will make the place your ultimate love nest. The weather of the place also plays a significant role in adding to the romanticism. Many would prefer going for a honeymoon at a spot, where the gently falling soft snow greets them as soon as they reach the place. Some newlyweds might also like to holiday amidst the rain, which makes the destination more cozy and beautiful. Thus, the weather perspective might also matter the most in making the place selected for your honeymoon, special for you two.

One more important aspect that we have to consider while deciding over a honeymoon holiday destination is the options for accommodation. If the place has enough number of well maintained hotels as well as holiday resorts, then it is surely the perfect one. After all, all you need for your intimate honeymoon is a luxurious as well as comfortable place to stay, when you are trying to discover everything about your better half!

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Tips for Personal Health and Hygiene

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The information presented in this guide may be suitable to supplement your doctor-prescribed daily routines. Please consult your doctor/physician first to get their advice if this guide is suitable for you to follow.



The helpful tips in this guide could serve you well if you are able to practice it on a regular basis.So take some time to understand each of them first to determine if they are suitable for you. When it comes to health, we should all take it seriously. And being healthy is and always has been about a lifestyle change. Like everything else, Health is something that we all have to strive and work for it. “There is no free lunch” comes to mind and is even more so when it comes to achieving our health golds. And trust me… there are also no short-cuts. So stay positive, and remember that your health and happiness will bring joy to people who are around you and who care for your well-being.

Thank you for your time in reading through this PREFACE.

Have a great day ahead!





We should not drink more than 3-4 units of alcohol per day for men. For women, this should be no more than 2-3 units. One alcohol unit roughly means 10ml of pure alcohol in an alcohol beverage. As a general guideline, for Ciders and Beer, no more than 2-3units. For Wine, no more than 2 units. For Spirits, no more than 1 unit, and for wine coolers, no more than 1.5 units. (Note that these are general guidelines)


How to wash hand with liquid soap properly.

Abstracted from Victoria state government Australia.

A lot of diseases are spread from contaminated hands. Clean hand save lives.


Pick up the courage to take the first step. Quit smoking today!

Wish to quit smoking but having difficulty doing so? Here are some tips for you to consider trying;

1) Identify and avoid situation which will trigger you to smoke. Have a plan to avoid or get through without smoking. E.g., avoid using the stairways if you always smoke there.

2) Delay your craving for tobacco by telling yourself to wait further few minutes first, do something to distract yourself for that period of time.

3) Chew something to fight craving like chewing gum, lozenges, nuts, raw vegetables.

4) Do more physical activities to distract yourself; exercise, do chores, sports games.

5) Practice relaxation techniques instead of smoking when stress.

6) Get support from family, friends, support groups, reminding you the benefits of smoking cessation.


An average adult need around 7-9 hours of sleep. Sleep increases your ability to focus and remember new information, improves your mood & lower your stress. It helps to maintain healthy weight and improves your performance & coordination. Establish a consistent sleep & wake schedule today!


Have you done your annual medical check up yet? Early detection can save your live.


Exercise helps to boost your immune system, control your weight. It improves your mood, increase your energy. It reduces stress, makes you feel more confident and positive. It sharpens your mind, enables you to sleep better. If you prefer exercising at the gym, make sure you clock in some time doing aerobic exercises for at least 20-30 minutes a day (minimum 3 times a week is recommended).


When the Holiday season arrives, and so does flu. Here is some tips to prevent flu beside drinking lots of fluid everyday You can also take food like mushroom, sweet potatoes, garlic, wild salmon, dark chocolate, almond, strawberries to boost your immune system against flu viruses.


Good sleep quality ensures better health, mood and performance. Here are some ways to help falling asleep easier;

Exercise during the day. Avoid caffeine and alcohol at night.

Have a light dinner 2-4 hours before bed. Switch off TV and computer in your bedroom. Keep your room temperature cool (around 21 degree Celsius), have a warm bath prior as well. Using lavender essence in bath oils and soaps can be helpful towards getting a good nights rest. After the bath, try to dim your bedroom lights (or turn off all your lights if you prefer) before you go to bed. For certain people, playing some soft soothing music may help while other folks will prefer a quiet sleeping.environment.

Drinking a good quality(authentic) chamomile tea can also help you sleep better. Avoid sugary and caffeinated drinks before bedtime – example coffee and certain types of caffeinated tea.


There will tend to be feasts after feasts. Here are some tips how to enjoy your feast gathering without overeating:

Do not skip meals/fast before the feast. Take only healthy snacks like raw vegetables, nuts, and fruits if you are a little hungry.

Eat food less in salt, oil, refined sugar, processed.

Start your meal by taking food low in calories then to higher later. e.g; start with soup, salad, lean protein, you will be quite full by dessert when you can feel satisfied just with a few bites (3).

Take one serving only, decline second helpings politely but firmly.

Avoid alcohol, try sparkling water instead. Cut down on smoking

Remember to continue your exercise regime during this festive season as well.

Lastly, try to enjoy the social gathering and not focus on the food instead. This season is about getting together, sharing joy and happiness after all.


Feeling groggy in the morning?

Here’s a few suggestions how to feel fresh in the morning;

Drink a glass or two of water when you wake up.

Do some stretching or cardio exercises.

Try Meditation or deep breathing exercise.

Cook breakfast not heavily loaded with carbohydrates (try fruits especially citrus, simple proteins like eggs, cheese, yogurt)

Listen to your favorite music or soothing sounds

Take a warm shower, but wash your face with cool water instead.

Think of something to make you feel excited about.

Feel grateful for another new day


A good proper breakfast (whole grain, lean protein, vegetables, fruits, dairy) is very important for your health.

A good breakfast helps to kickstart your day, increasing your metabolism.

It makes to feel for fresh and less grouchy, elevating your mood.

A healthy breakfast helps you to focus and concentrate better, enabling you to think and solve problems easier.

A healthy breakfast also helps in reducing cravings and making unhealthy food choices. It helps in controlling your weight.


Keep your body clean at all times is a basic social etiquette that everyone should follow – if you have been outdoors and have perspired, do dry yourself and if possible, take a shower. Sweat contains body salts and oils and this can cause body odors to develop. Bacteria on the skin surface can also cause body odors to occur. Armpits and other areas of the body are perfect places where bacteria love to multiply and moisture helps them do so. So try to keep your those areas dry and this will reduce your chanced of developing bad body odors.


  • Keep squeaky clean

  • Use anti-bacterial soap when taking a bath

  • Towel dry yourself thoroughly

  • Apply good deodorants and antiperspirants

  • Keep your wardrobe clean

  • Avoid strong smelling foods and drinks


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Japan Travel Destination – Yokohama

Yokohama, a city that sits in Tokyo Bay, is often overlooked when traveling in Japan. I admit, it is not that exciting and culturally rich as other travel destinations, but it still has unique attractions to offer. If you are in the Tokyo area looking for a day-trip and are sick of shrines and temples, Yokohama is for you.

Yokohama is the capital city of Kanagawa prefecture. It is slightly to the south of Tokyo and on the mainland of Honshu Island. It is a major commercial hub of the Greater Tokyo area. Initially starting out as a fishing village that opened Japan’s doors to foreign trade through its port, it developed into a prominent port city very rapidly, and also holds a large population of foreign nationals. Yokohoma’s climate is a humid subtropical climate with hot and humid summers and not too cold winters.

There are many places of interest in Yokohama that fascinates travelers. At 106 meters, Yokohama Marine Tower, is the tallest inland light house in the whole world. It is located in the Yamashita Park next to the water front in the celebrated port area of Kannai. Japan’s largest Chinatown is situated in this city as well, and is worth a visit. You will find the food tasting very different from the Chinatown in New York or any other place. If you liked the ramen noodles there, be sure to stop by the Shin Yokohama Ramen Museum to learn how this mouth-watering dish spread from Yokohama to the rest of Japan. Very near to Chinatown is the famous Yokohama Doll Museum and the Silk Center. The Kanagawa Museum of Modern Literature with its lovely rose garden is also within reach.

Yokohama’s harbor area houses the Cosmo Clock 21, which is not only a giant ferry wheel but the worlds biggest clock too. It also provides amazing photographs at night. If you’re awed by vast arenas or stadiums, the Yokohama Arena built for 17,000 people is in the vicinity, next to the Shikansen station. The International Stadium Yokohama and Nissan Stadium are some more. Finally, in the Naka Ward, there is a famous Japanese garden called “Sankeien” that was designed by a silk trader, Tomitaro Hara.

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Online Writing Contest – Competition Tips – How to Win Every Contest You Enter

So you’ve stumbled across an online writing competition / contest, or perhaps your favourite brand of cereal is offering you a chance to win a holiday around the world. All you have to do is tell them in 25 words or less why you want it. And you want to win, right?

Well believe it or not there are a small number of easy steps you can take to dramatically increase the odds in your favor. And here they are, free of charge just because I’m such a nice guy…

No Sob Stories!

This tip goes first on the list, because it is the most important. For some reason the first thing that seems to come to people’s minds with these contests and competitions is “how can I get them to pity me?” It sounds like a great plan as an entrant, but speaking from personal experience as a judge in these contests, I can tell you that it’s a complete turnoff.

Nonetheless people will try ever trick in the book…

We can’t pay the rent… our house burnt down… everybody in my family has cancer… I need 16 operations so that my dog stops being depressed and I can have my leg re-attached then pay the rent and burn the house down… well you get the point.

Let me make it very clear – this tactic does not work, even if you are telling the truth, because:

1. Judges can’t verify your claims, so anyone can make up any story they like.

2. After a while these entries become so numerous and laborious that they don’t stand out.

All that you will do is send the judge into a depression spiral. More to the point, you will end up highlighting your competitors’ entries because theirs are more enjoyable to read.

Be Creative and Make it Fun to Read

Depending on the number of entrants, judges can often have a lot of text to read. As their head slumps closer and closer to the desk and the coffee starts to wear off, your entry is going to need to have something special about it to get noticed. The best thing you can do is get creative. And I mean really thinking outside of the box (if you are thinking poetry right now, you are not thinking hard enough).

My advice to you here is simple. If you come up with something different and make it really stand out, and MAKE IT FUNNY, you will win. When I hear a fellow judge burst out into laughter at his or her desk, 9 times out of 10 he or she is reading the winner. I can usually even tell which entry they are reading because I had the same reaction when I first read it.

If you can manufacture a reaction like this, chances are you are on a winner. I suggest using your friends and family as test dummies here. If they end up in a ball rolling around the floor you’ve done your job. If the best you get is “not bad”, “(chuckle) very good” or even “looks good to me”, then you need to go back to the drawing board.

Now that’s not to say every winner will be comical or humorous, but your entry needs to stand out as somehow being impressive or interesting.

Stick to the Rules and Stay on Topic

If I had a penny for every time a “words or less” entry broke the rules, I would currently be Bahamas and you would be on your own with this one. Take the time to read the rules, terms and conditions before entering. And if you are provided with a quick-start guide to entering a competition, read it over at least 3 times and make sure you take the advice onboard.

In general, you should always:

· Stay within the word limit

· Write in direct response to the competition’s question or topic (really important!)

· Avoid coarse language

· Submit your entry in the language requested

Short, Sharp, Shiny

Just because you are allowed to use 25 words doesn’t mean you should. If your entry says what you want it to say, don’t fill up the rest of your word limit by repeating yourself or adding useless details. All you end up doing is diluting your message.

Polish It!

So it took you 5 minutes (or maybe 2 days) to create your entry. Would another 5 minutes of proofreading kill you? No, of course not, but it will definitely help you win. Check your grammar, check your punctuation, check your capitalization and check your spelling. Presentation makes your entry easier to read, and will greatly improve your chances.

Submit It

It sounds obvious, doesn’t it? But how many times have you seen a competition you would like to enter, only to let the due date slip by? As the saying goes, you’ve got to be in it to win it. And if you use the advice I’ve just given you, your chances of coming out on top will greatly improve.

So what are you waiting for?

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Asia’s Top 10 Destination Spas

Destinations spas are those hotels and resorts which promote the sole purpose of helping people to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle. They promote

  • a healthy, nutritious diet
  • simultaneous fitness classes and programs for stress reduction
  • massages and other therapeutic spa treatments
  • sessions to ensure healthy lifestyles

Destinations spas are usually situated in rather remote areas and serve very few guests at a time. This helps maintain a calm, tranquil atmosphere that encourages relaxation and stress relief. They usually offer meals, activities, spa treatments and classes, as part of their overall package. Unlike resorts, all activities and meals at destination spas are complementary to the overall health and relaxation purpose of the spa. These spas stipulate a minimum duration of stay to ensure the customer properly benefits from their stay.

Depending on their focuses, spas can be of different prices and destinations. The Asian Subcontinent houses one of the most exotic collections of destination spas.

In no particular order, the ten of Asia’s top destinations spas are;


Location: Hua Hin, Thailand

One of the first spas of its kind in Asia, Chiva-Som merges western and eastern influences to create an opulent spa with superb hospitality, service and treatments.

Banyan Tree Bintan

Location: Thailand

Originally starting their ventures in Thailand, this resort group has branched out to form one of the largest chains of resorts and destination spas in the Asian continent.

Ananda in the Himalayas

Location: India

Situated at the foothills of the Himalayas, this spa features many well-known Indian health regimes such as Ayurveda, Vedanta and Yoga.

COMO Shambhala Estate

Location: Bali, Indonesia

This spa offers everything from lifestyle training to luxurious spa treatments, creating an opulent atmosphere for its guests.

Mandarin Oriental Dhara Dhevi

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Inspired by the aesthetic and historical traditions of Chiang Mai, this spa has accommodations facilities and restaurants housed in buildings reminiscent of the colonial mansions and the wooden rice barns of times past.

Grand Hyatt

Location: Hong Kong, China

Placed amongst the finest luxury hotels in the world and with a magnificent view of Hong Kong’s famous Victoria Harbour and the Wanchai district, Grand Hyatt hosts the excellent residential spa, Plateau Spa.

W Seoul – Walkerhill

Location: Seoul, Korea

Aside from its superb view of the river and mountain range, this spa offers many spa treatments as well as other down to earth entertainments.

Six Senses Destination Spa Phuket

Location: Phuket, Thailand

This all-inclusive spa, located on its own private island Naka Yai, offers visitors splendid views and beach luxuries alongside lavish spa treatments.

Pudong Shangri-La

Location: Shanghai, China

This award-winning spa offers excellent dining as well as excellent service and a great range of amenities that will ensure guests a wonderful visit.

Mandarin Oriental

This award-winning luxury hotel group is famous for its excellent service and hospitality. Located in prime destinations in over 25 countries, the group is dedicated to ensuring the best for their visitors.

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Why Africa Is Not All Safaris – Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro

When the majority of people think of taking their next holiday vacation to the continent of Africa they generally have one thing in mind… An African safari.

Now we are going to explore why Africa is not all safari tours. Sure a safari tour in Africa is a very adventurous holiday and something that is definitely worth exploring but I dare you to look even deeper to find a unique and exciting adventure for you.

What most people don’t realise is that there are so many different adventures to be had on the continent of Africa some of which you have most likely heard of and others that only serious adventurers are aware of.

In this article to prove why Africa is not all safaris we are taking a look at taking a look at one of the biggest adventures in all of Africa – Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro.

Considered as one of the 7 Natural Wonders of Africa we find Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania which stands at a staggering height of 5,895 metres (19,340 ft) making this the largest free standing mountain in the world.

On top of the mountain are 7 different peaks, the largest being named Uhuru. These are covered with snow year round which makes the mountain a beautiful place to visit and to take some stunning photographs.

For the adventurous type climbing the mountain is a must however only 40% of the mountains trekkers will successfully reach the summit on their trip. It’s not much a of climb, more of a trek that is until the last part of mountain which makes the peak unattainable for more than half of its visitors.

There are 6 main tracks for climbing Mt Kilimanjaro which are named Machame, Marangu, Lemosho, Rongai, Shira and Umbwe.

The Machame trek is said to be the most challenging of these although the views of the landscape below are also said to be the best viewing.

One of the best reasons to head to Africa and climb the mighty Mt Kilimanjaro is the fact that you can combine the climb with an African Safari if you wish.

Training, prep and acclimatisation is highly recommended when climbing the high altitude peak so many tour operators will already include a safari tour while the trekkers adjust to the atmosphere.

With Mt Kilimanjaro being located in Tanzania there are a number of additional options for visitors to do to combine a safari or other African tour to add to the climb.

The Ngorongoro Crater is one safari that is located fairly close by and is generally the safari option that most of the tour operators use to combine with Mt Kilimanjaro. In this crater you will see an abundance of wildlife.

Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro is one reason why Africa is not all safaris.

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Is Vehicle More Important Than Destination?

Over the years people who engage themselves in home based business have looked for a formula or easy answer to what it takes to achieve success in home based business. As any good home based business leader, advisor will tell you, there is no easy way to attain success; however that doesn’t mean you should forget about the success and quit building home based business. Like most of life’s challenges, achieving success in home based business takes hard work and time but is definitely attainable.

Let me start by defining success as it means many different things to different people.

To start, success is not a magic or a lucky draw that allows you to be successful. It’s a planned event that is attained when all of your ducks are lined up, so to speak. Of course there is a work involve to it but it’s not just a lucky draw game.

Outlined below are steps to attain business success. This is by no means a complete list but shall enable you to embark on your journey to fulfill your dreams.

A Plan– As stated success is a planned event, you need to prepare your comprehensive business plan. This plan must incorporate all aspects of your life, your dreams and your vision for the future. It will start with your current position and create a road map of how to reach your destination in the most efficient way possible.

A Coach– Your plan has a far greater chance of succeeding if you have a trusted and qualified mentor or coach that will guide you along your path to home based business success. They will ensure you stick to the plan as you work towards your goals. A coach will also make adjustments to the plan over time as circumstances in your life. The coach’s ultimate mandate is to ensure your dreams are realized.

Support System– One of the most critical aspects is realized in home based business is your support system. Support system is the vehicle that will take you to your destination. More than your business model, it is the system with which you are attached. What I mean is that it’s more important that you choose the right type of vehicle for your trip and not so much the brand name of the vehicle. Part of the plan shall outline the use of system for you to reach specific goals.

Work – This key is the most important key, it is also the hardest. Building home based business requires hard work and discipline; it involves trusting your plan at all times (even when you are not growing). It is very easy to pull out of the home based business when your business is not growing or it is like a yoyo which is creating a doubt in your mind that you will not be successful. You have to stay focus, continue your work and follow your plan through thick and thin. The psychological side of building home based business is difficult to deal with for the best of us and this is another area that a great coach will prove priceless.

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. So even if you trip, stumble or have to take a break, its ok, just make sure you get up and… Keep on Stepping!”

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Five Great Coffee Houses and Cafes in Amsterdam – Part 2

Amsterdam is a fantastic, vibrant city and is also the capital of the Netherlands. While it has gained notoriety for its marijuana cafes and lax stance on prostitution, it is also one of the oldest cities in Europe and boasts a huge amount of culture. One of the best things you can do while there is head on down to one or two of the famous coffee houses for a hit of culture, great food and drink and people watching. Read on from Part One in this guide to the greatest cafes in the city…

Stone’s Corner

Choose from two locations in the Red Light District: the first is large and barlike, whereas the second is smaller and more stylish, rather like a lounge. This is another great spot for people watching, since it has huge glass windows facing out into a busy pedestrian street.

Homegrown Fantasy

With a bit of a modern art museum vibe, this is an unusual but charming place. While easy to miss if you don’t know where it is, inside it is roomy and comfortable. This is a fairly well-kept secret, located in a not particularly touristy street that is however easily accessible from either Centraal Station or Dam Square. One of a kind and well worth the visit!


A great little shop with lovely views out across the Warmeostraat in the Red Light District. They open at appoximately 8am and close at 1am each night. If you’re not a huge fan of trance or house music, maybe this won’t be your cup of tea, but for those who love it, it’s paradise.

Hill Street Blues

If Baba happens to be packed, no problem, because this place is only about 30 seconds down the road. It’s a great place to sit and relax, particularly as the back room has such lovely views over the Centraal Station harbour. If you feel like a game of pool, head down to the games room downstairs.

Tops Coffeeshop

A bit out of the way, but well worth it! The staff are usually very friendly and helpful, the sound system is good, food and drink are great and best of all, you have a fanstic view over the Prinsengracht. During summer the front doors open up and the outdoor seating imparts a glorious summery atmosphere.

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What Makes Arizona The Ideal Destination For Canadians?

If you’ve already heard about the hordes of Canadians traveling to Arizona, there is a good reason for this. While the weather in Canada is typically laden with snow and at subzero temperatures, in Arizona it’s normally full of sunshine. But could it be just the weather? There are plenty of other reasons. Arizona has become a buyer’s market not just to Canadians but even to buyers across the U.S. There are numerous buying opportunities with a wide range of options, including single family homes, town homes, and resort/golf course properties.

The Weak U.S. Dollar

The weak U.S. dollar has simply made it easier for Canadians to strike gold in Arizona real estate. For instance, there’s a lot of taxes on gas and liquor in Canada, thus, it’s always been more affordable in the U.S. And now with the strong Canadian dollar, the prospect is even greater in the real estate field. Either Canadians are flocking in during the winter, or decide to permanently live in Arizona. In fact, it appears that every third person in the Phoenix area is a Canadian.

At the height of things there has been a 17.5 percent increase in the Canadian currency against the U.S. dollar. It’s become a notable year for Canadians, however, if you haven’t booked or reserved yet, it would be worth doing so now. Some sites are even turning away tourists because they are full.

More Developments

The trade links between Canada and Arizona was initially typified by vegetable crops to the north, and timber to the south. However, the interlinking has turned out a lot deeper in the previous 2 decades. Arizona is gradually turning into a top state for optical and photonic research, aerospace, life sciences and development. Consequentially, this has produced many more businesses and academic travel between Arizona and eastern Canada. Today, there’s a huge link between Montreal, Toronto, and Ottawa with Arizona that was never really there several years back.

Countless Options

Foreclosures and new developments have such appealing costs at the moment, it wouldn’t make sense to turn them down. Typically, a lot of resale properties are priced beyond market value. Arizona offers properties for various Canadian lifestyles, including town homes and condos for those escaping the winter, low-cost homes below $150,000 for families on a budget, gated communities, resort homes with golf courses just “in the backyard,” and even multimillion dollar palaces constructed on the mountainside, surrounded by natural desert landscape.

Canadians getting into Arizona Real Estate are not only benefiting from the wide range of attractive homes, but they are particularly impressed with the value they get. In fact properties that are priced at $250,000 in Arizona would currently be around $750,000 in Canada. That is a huge deal considering the kind of properties you get. For instance, Canadians in the area can enjoy playing golf in any of Phoenix’s hundreds of golf courses.

Travel Convenience

There are now a number of special programs for Canadian snowbirds searching for homes in areas of Arizona that are considered to be the best destinations for golfing and other leisure activities. The goal of such programs is to make the transition to U.S. home ownership a simpler and quicker one for interested Canadian buyers. Another reason why such programs now exist is to further secure economic ties between Arizona and Canada. There’s been remarkable support for successful amenity services that focus on vacation travelers. You can see their endeavors with the non-stop flights from Montreal to Phoenix very recently, and developments are continuing for the following years.

Such convenience in travel will be welcomed by those wanting to escape the chilly winters. This makes locations in Arizona such as Phoenix more appealing for those who plan to stay half of the year in Canada and the other half in the warmer parts of the U.S. Not only has that, one can enjoy the speed with which they receive from their home to their second home.

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Enjoying The Opulence of Five Star Hotels in Lonavala

The hill station of Lonavala has established itself as one of the prime tourist destinations in the city. Receiving widespread publicity with the popular TV show ‘Bigg Boss’ where inmates are kept in a home in Lonavala. The place is now a retreat for all those who wish for tranquility away from the commotion of metropolitan cities. The five star hotels of Lonavala are known for serving luxury in the lap of nature. These stunning holiday resorts near Pune have a wide range of services and opulence worthy of indulgence.

The five star hotels in Lonavala have myriad facilities to provide leisure to travelers. These holiday resorts near Pune offer an opportunity for rejuvenation and recreation through spa services and treatments that allow travelers to invigorate them. One can forget all stresses of life with Kerala Ayurveda Massage centers that some of these holiday resorts near Pune have to offer. The ancient Indian medical science used behind these therapies is what gives solace to mind, body and soul. Along with the spa services, some of the best five star hotels in Lonavala provide a spew of facilities such as gymnasium, which have full-fledged facilities and high end machines for helping travelers stay fit and healthy even while they are vacationing. Most of the holiday resorts near Pune have proximity to different cities of Maharashtra. Therefore, travelers can visit Pune or Mumbai and then be back to their retreat for dinner and a good night’s sleep.

Opulence of these hotels can be enjoyed through a range of 5 star services that they offer for recreation. This includes video game rooms for the young at heart, beautiful landscaped gardens that provide panoramic view of the hill station, pool tables, badminton areas, carrom room and play areas for kids. The opulence here can be best enjoyed by honeymooners and couples who are looking for some romantic time together, secluded from the rest of the world. Perhaps that is why the best hotels in this hill station are known for organizing themed destination weddings and excursions for couples and vacationers.

The best of these hotels also have other range of services, including spacious rooms and cottages. Therefore, one can choose a room or cottage based on their budget and requirements. To ensure that one indulges the best in luxury and nature, they should opt for hotels that have beautiful views of evergreen Western Ghats and have aesthetically appealing decor.

Truly, Lonavala is the hill station that gives travelers an opportunity to explore and invigorate themselves. And to ensure that they get the unforgettable experience, travelers must opt for five star hotels with services that can leave indelible imprint on their hearts and minds.

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Why India Is Considered the Most Favorite Destination for Medical Tourism

India is one of the fastest growing medical tourism destinations in the world. The high-skilled specialists in the country, combined with the lowest medical costs and world-class healthcare services are what make India a sought-after destination for healthcare serviceability

Patients who travel abroad for medical treatment do so for a variety of reasons. Patients from developing countries look for treatment in India not available in their own countries. Thus the medical tourism in India is seeing the arrival of patients from our neighbouring countries. Also, those who come from the western side of the world look for treatments that cost five to 10 times in their own country and rush to India to avoid the huge waiting period for many routine procedures.

The cost differential is huge: Open-heart surgery costs up to approx $70,000 in Britain and $150,000 in the US; in India’s best hospitals it could cost between $3,000 and $10,000. Knee surgery costs Rs. 3.5 lakh ($7,700) in India; in Britain it costs $16,950. Most of the hospitals and healthcare firms who promote medical tourism in India, provides a package deal or assistance that includes flights, hotels, treatment and, often, a post-operative vacation.

Patients planning to travel to India for medical treatment would also be interested about the quality of service and treatment the hospitals provide. JCI (Joint Commission International) and NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers) are two globally recognised healthcare quality standards and India has more than 30 JCI accredited hospitals and around 425 NABH accredited hospitals.

The government of India is also making many policies to promote Medical tourism. It has already relaxed some visa norms on India tourist visa that require a two-month gap between repeated visits for the citizens of Gulf countries which is a huge step to improve medical tourism in India. A visa-on-arrival proposal or E-visa for tourists from chosen nations which permits foreign nationals to visit India for 30 days medical reasons has also spiked up the market of medical tourism in India. Hospitals and healthcare firms also arrange Interpreters or translators for patients from abroad to make them feel comfortable & easy while communicating.

The most sought medical treatments in India by foreign patients are bone-marrow transplant, alternative medicine, knee transplant, cosmetic surgery, eye surgery, hip transplant, cardiac bypass, dental care, and. India is famous for heart surgery, hip resurfacing and other areas of advanced medicine.

In addition to modern medical treatments, India is also recognized globally for its alternative medical treatments like Ayurveda and Yoga and almost all Ayurveda hospitals in India are accredited to NABH.

So, in short, medical tourism in India is on its peak due to its compact medical treatment costs, the accessibility of most up-to-date medical technology and world-class excellence standards. Indian government is also contributing to the medical tourism by dealing with infrastructure problems that obstruct the country’s enlargement in the field of medical treatment India.

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Five Easy Tips for Beating Festive Season Fat Traps – Without Starving Yourself

Remember that feeling of delicious excitement that we used to feel as kids at the approach of the end of year holidays? Sadly, for many of us it’s been replaced with a sense of dread… and not just at the prospect of opening our credit card bill in January!

For some an even bigger fear awaits – the prospect of facing the bathroom scale after weeks of festive food and drink.

It wasn’t for nothing that they once called holidays like Christmas “feast days”. Back in medieval times these feasts were rare islands of indulgence in oceans of famine lasting for months.

In the developed world these days, the closest we get to famine is when we work through lunch. It can be a battle to keep our weight under control in the face of everyday food temptations. End of year feasts can tip us right over the edge.

But it need not be like that. Here are five simple tips to beat the festive season fat traps… and the inevitable guilt that follows. You’ll be relieved to hear that none of them involves starving yourself. In fact, the first tip actually advises the exact opposite…

1) Eat a good breakfast

This may seem counter-productive, but this advice applies to everyday life, so why change it over the holidays? Many people sleep in and skip breakfast during the holidays. By the time lunch or dinner comes along they’re ravenous and cram far more into their mouths than they would normally.

I’m assuming, of course that your usual breakfast is a sensible, healthy one. Starting off the day with a stack of pancakes, grits, bacon and six eggs is NOT a good way to start the day, holiday or no holiday!

2) Drink at least eight glasses of water a day

You should be drinking plenty of water each day anyway. Over the holidays this is even more important.

We all tend to drink more alcohol or sugary sodas over holiday periods. I’m not going to be a killjoy and suggest you deny yourself these indulgences, but try to alternate each “bad” drink with a glass of water. If it’s a glass of sparkling mineral water, with a slice of lime in it, you won’t look or feel out of place. Your head and stomach will thank you the next morning.

3) Fill up on fiber

Drink one of you eight or more glasses of water half an hour to forty minutes before the main meal, along with a fiber supplement. There’s no need to buy an expensive, over-hyped diet aids like ZetaCap or FiberThin, either. A product like Metamucil is far cheaper and just as effective.

You’ll feel fuller by the time the food arrives, so you’ll eat less. And thanks to the additional fiber in your diet, the food won’t hang around in your digestive system for as long, which means less of it will be absorbed to eventually find its way onto your waist or thighs.

4) Pace yourself

This applies to the festive season as a whole and to each of the big meals you encounter over this period. By all means enjoy these feasts, but resist the temptation to turn every day between Thanksgiving and New Year into a feast day.

When presented with a table groaning with all manner of delectable treats, the natural response is to heap your plate high with as much of everything you can fit on it. Go instead for more, but smaller helpings. Have a slice of turkey with some greens. Then go back for a slice of gammon and potatoes. Hmm, that sauerkraut looks good…

Chew slowly and talk to your friends and family. Feasts are by their nature leisurely affairs. Use this to your advantage and take your time. This way your stomach will have plenty of time to register that it’s full, which is not the case when you scoff down a huge plate of food.

The bonus is that you actually get to enjoy dessert, rather than forcing it down out of sense of obligation.

5) Take a hike

Yes, the holidays do offer more culinary temptations. But they also offer more opportunities for fun, fat burning activities.

Go for a leisurely swim or walk on the beach if you live in a warm climate. If not, take a relaxing hike in the woods with your kids. Or cuddle up to your significant other in front of a blazing fire… which is sure to lead to one of the most effective and enjoyable forms of exercise!

Happy holidays!

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Chauffer Car Service – The Comfortable Way to Reach Your Destination

In the cities, we tend to travel half the route on our cars, and then take a bus, or board a train to cover the remaining distance. The problem here is getting a proper parking space for your vehicle, and also having to pay high parking fees in the city. Hence, it turns out to be expensive for you, because you pay for the fuel as well as the parking fee.

With that being the case, you could opt for a chauffeur driven car services to cover the 1st half of your route. These services are similar to the taxis, with the only difference being, you can arrange for yourself to be picked up, right from your home or wherever you are.

Benefits of choosing a chauffeur car service

Chauffeur car services have been getting popular these days. They offer quality services to keep their customers satisfied, and make them stay loyal for years to come. If you are new to a city or town, opting for chauffeur car services is the best choice.

Following are some of the benefits of using chauffeur car services.

  • Options to choose: Service providers give you multiple options to choose the vehicle you want to travel in. You can choose as per your comfort and budget.
  • Reduces stress: It makes your travel time stress-free using their luxurious and comfortable facilities.
  • Reduces tensions: It reduces your worries of parking, traffic, being on time, etc.
  • Cheaper price: You can hire an affordable rental company by doing proper research. It is a reliable way to reach your destination.
  • Fast service: You can reach your destination facing huge traffic on the way, as drivers know all the shortcuts and routes that can be taken to avoid peak hours rush.
  • Anywhere anytime: They provide you facilities 24 x 7 anywhere in the city. All you need to do is to make a call to book your cab.
  • Multi-tasking: You can choose to opt for this service for a wedding or any other social or business event.

Tips for choosing a chauffeur car service

There are various bogus car service providers that can cheat you in many ways. That is why you should know how to choose a reliable service provider.

  • Go online: You can get various chauffer car services online. Instead of running around here and there, you could refer to online directories to look for a reliable care rental services.
  • Different rates: Before booking a car you need to find out about their charges and its details. There are different rates offered by various companies depending upon the value added services provided by them.
  • Ask for Relevant papers/documents: You need to check the original car and driving documents before hiring a car.
  • Choose what you want: You should choose your ride as per your requirement, it can be based on

  1. Travelling distance
  2. Time for which you are hiring
  3. Day chosen
  4. Luxury features that you want
  5. Type of vehicle (sedan, SUV etc.)

So, why drive around on the busy roads and stress yourself mentally and physically. Hire a cab with chauffer and travel peacefully anywhere you want.

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Halloween and World Religions

Halloween has changed dramatically over the years. Originally a Celtic celebration of the New Year, it has transformed into a holiday with evil connotations. Many equate the once benevolent celebration of community into a celebration of evil or “devil-worship.”

It is for this reason that many religious people question whether they should celebrate the holiday. While it is not wise to generalize and assume one’s opinion by that expressed by the whole as a group, let us take a look at each religion’s viewpoint on Halloween.

(Not all followers of each faith prescribe to the opinions listed, but these are general findings of the opinion of each religion. Also, this is a limited selection of the vast amounts of religions found throughout the world. Many religions have little to no connection with the holiday at all.)


The devout followers of Islam do not celebrate Halloween for it is forbidden in the Qu’ran to celebrate non-Muslim holidays. A quote from further elaborates, ” . . . Moreover, it symbolizes the beginning of the ancient Druid new year, who hold that the dead revisit their homes at that time, thus in essence, Halloween represents the devil worshipper’s New Year’s celebration.”

From an Islamic standpoint, Halloween is one of the worst celebrations, due to its origins in Paganism. It is clearly forbidden for a Muslim to participate in a Halloween celebration.


Those of the Jewish faith do not celebrate Halloween for the same reason Muslims do not – it is forbidden in their faith to celebrate a non-Jewish holiday. Halloween’s Celtic roots and Christian connection (All Saint’s Day), Jews do not consider it to be a non-sectarian holiday.

However, Jews do celebrate a holiday that is similar in festivities. The holiday is Purim, and it commemorates a time when Jewish people living in Persia were saved from extermination. The celebration of this holiday involves costumes and candy.


Christians range in opinion on this topic, from evangelists who condemn anything to do with the religion, to those who welcome it as a chance to spread messages of faith to trick or treaters, and also to those who infer the holiday was started by Christians.

Most devout Christians forbid celebration of Halloween, due to the belief that its origin comes from Paganism and devil-worship.

Some Christians believe the holiday as Christian roots, in reference to All Hallow’s Eve or “Feast of All Saints” which occurs on November 1st and celebrates the dead in heaven and purgatory. It became customary on All Hallows Eve to bang pots and pans together to let the dead know the damned know they were not forgotten.


Religious Satanists do not assign any significance to Halloween. The holiday is NOT Satanic in origin, and Satanists certainly do not practice any sort of sacrifice on Halloween (nor is animal sacrifice an accepted practice of any organized Satanic group).


For Wiccans, Halloween represents the New Year, a time of reflection and celebration. New life is welcomed while the dead are remembered. It is believed that the veil between the spiritual and material worlds is the thinnest at this time of year.

Halloween is one of the eight Sabbats (or seasonal holidays) celebrated by Wiccans. Samhain, as Wiccans refer to it, symbolizes the transition or death of the elderly Great Horn God (not to be confused with the Christian idea of Satan), the male energy of the Divine. It also celebrates the aging Goddess, the female energy of the Divine.


The Celtic priests, or Druids, who originally celebrated the holiday shared the Buddhists’ belief in rebirth, and in the indestructibility of the mind. There are correspondences between the traditional Celtic celebration of Halloween and the Buddhist concept of “Bardo.”

Halloween symbolizes the entry of the separated spirit from the spiritual world into the material world. Bardo is the concept of the consciousness experiencing apparitions (ghosts, demons, etc.). If the mind recognizes these apparitions as false hallucinations, liberation is possible.

Religious stances range from support and celebration to ignorance and condemnation and anywhere in between when it comes to Halloween. In the end, it is up to the individual and their personal beliefs and feelings.

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Destination Caribbean: Cayman Islands

Just the mention of the Cayman Islands conjures up their importance as a banking center and all the negative connotations that go along with it. But the Cayman Islands is actually a spectacular place to visit. It’s especially great for those who love diving. Even if it’s just lounging on the beaches, it’s possible to make some lasting memories. Read on to find out if the Cayman Islands is a match for your next get away from reality!

If you are coming to dive, you can choose from the 240 dive sites that are available around Grand Cayman. I would recommend diving and seeing Stingray City. This means basically being surrounded by the large amounts of stingrays that flock to the area around this 12 foot dive. Always do your research and go with a reputable diving tour operator. This is something that a travel agent can help with, especially since many may already know some right off the bat. There may be some requirements that you may need to take care of before your arrival. Check this out to make sure there aren’t any surprises and you can still enjoy your diving excursions.

If you’d rather stay on the beach sunning yourself, there’s no better place than the Seven Mile Beach. This area can also be found on the Grand Cayman. Here, wade and swim in the clear water before choosing which bar or restaurant to rest at.

Cayman Brac is one of the three islands that make up this destination. Catch the views from the bluff or brac and take gorgeous pictures to share back home! Hike through the many trails found on this island and try to get a glimpse of the Brac Parrot, which is an endangered species.

If you’re looking for seclusion and total relaxation, Little Cayman is the island for you! The beaches here are certainly more private than the Seven Mile Beach. There’s even a much smaller deserted island named Owen Island. You have to row out to Owen Island but the time together would be worth it. Just note that this island is more for those couples looking for some romance and privacy than can be found on Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac.

Seclusion, the beauty of tropical islands, romance, and beaches. These are the words that you’ll associate the Cayman Islands with once you’ve visited. Whatever you come to find, you’ll find it and more!

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Halloween Decorating Safety Tips

We feel like little kids when we decorate the front yard for Halloween. But there are real dangers lurking around all those cobwebs and flying bats. It’s important to be aware of Halloween decorating safety tips that can help you reduce those dangers.

If you plan on having trick-or-treaters come through your yard to the front door you need to look at everything from a small child’s point of few. When they run up to the door on Halloween night will they see the electrical cord from the talking skeleton lying by the sidewalk? Will they notice the real candle burning in the pumpkin that is sitting right next to the door? Will they make sure their vampire cape or princess robe doesn’t come close to it or will they only think about getting the candy into their bag?

If you have electrical decorations make sure the cords are secure and not where anyone can trip over them. Children don’t always use the sidewalks so don’t leave those cords lying anywhere in the path of those little feet.

Use the battery operated candles in any pumpkins or other decorations that are on the pathway to your door or on the porch near the door. Real candles should only be used where children won’t be coming near them and you can keep an eye on the decoration/pumpkin with the candle. It’s up to you to think about the dangers before you light those candles.

If you use colored lights in your front yard you need to make sure they are bright enough for good visibility on the path to your door. Be sure all your decorations are set away from the main walking path. You don’t want any child to be tripping over them.

Those cobwebs and bats flying out of nowhere as the children come up to your porch may seem like fun to you but they can be very frightening to some children. They may run away screaming. That’s where you need to make sure there are not obstacles in their path. It’s best to keep most if not all your decorations in areas of the yard that children would not cut through.

If you are having a party inside your home Halloween decorating needs to follow similar tips. Fire is the number one safety issue with home decorations. Candles are used a lot and without proper precautions fires can occur.

Many decorations are made of dried flowers, cornstalks, crepe paper, and flammable fabrics. These kinds of materials need to be kept away from any candles or other open flames such as fireplaces. They also need to be kept away from other heat sources such as electric light bulbs, heaters, tops of TV’s, computers, or other electronic equipment that becomes hot to the touch. This also includes outdoor lights.

When setting up your Halloween decorations inside ask yourself these questions.

1. Will these candles, when lit, be in a place where someone might bump into them?

2. Are the wires for the talking skeleton safely taped down or behind furniture?

3. Can that cobweb draping the steps cause someone to trip and fall?

4. Are all exits (doors and/or windows) clear of decorations so they can be used in case of fire?

Use these simple Halloween decorating safety tips to help make the difference between a happy Halloween and a disastrous one.

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What Makes Mallorca A Great Late-Winter Travel Destination?

Mallorca (also known as Majorca) is an island located on the coasts of Mediterranean sea. This is the largest island in the Balearic Islands, and is a part of Spain. Most of the tourists travel to Mallorca to enjoy the sunshine and beaches during the summer months. However, very few know that there are plenty of other ways to enjoy this heaven on earth during the spring, autumn and winter months. This place is less crowded during these seasons and the entire family can enjoy many outdoor activities during the off-season.

Let’s look at some of the activities which you can do during the winter months in Mallorca-

1) Serra de Tramuntana- This is a world heritage site declared by UNESCO in 2011. Hence if you are a nature lover, spend a few days exploring this mountain range on foot or by bike. There are extraordinary techniques used to develop agriculture in this area on its steep slopes and the uniqueness of these techniques which are developed over the centuries has earned this prestigious position for this site.

You may also choose to enjoy the snow falls during the winters on this mountain range.

2) Sóller by vintage train- Another interesting thing which can be done during the winters in Mallorca is taking a wooden train ride from Palma to the beautiful town of Sóller. This train ride through the Tramuntana Mountains is so picturesque, that you will not feel like going back to your city. The path is surrounded with orange orchards and lemon plantations. There are pine forests and olive groves too spread all across this line. After reaching Sóller, take a stroll in the local market and pick up some fresh fruits and vegetables. Enjoy the local cuisines and spend a lazy afternoon enjoying the Art Nouveau houses spread across the land.

3) Binissalem- If you are a wine connoisseur, then you should not miss the trip to this small village. Manto Negro and Callet varieties of grapes are used for fermenting the red wines and Moll for the white wines. There are quite a few famous wineries like Vins Nadal, Macià Batle, and Son Prim which you can visit in your leisure time. The largest among them is José L. Ferrer. Please call the facility before making a trip so that they can make arrangements for your group.

4) S’Albufera nature reserve- These wetlands are located near Port d’Alcúdia on the northeast coast. There are more than 200 bird species which can be witnessed in these 4,200 acres of land. This place is wonderful for birdwatching, cycling and walking. To safeguard the sanctity of the place, driving is prohibited in this area. So take your cycles, cameras, water bottles and food packets and go on an expedition to watch kestrels, purple herons and Eleonora’s falcons which are visible in different times of the year.

5) Lluc Sanctuary- Amidst the lush green mountains of Serra de Tramuntana, Lluc Sanctuary hosts the figure of the Madonna, La Moreneta. This place is considered to be the spiritual center of Mallorca. This figure was found there in the 13 century and now this figure is adorned with a jeweled crown. The natives respect this place as a pilgrimage and the foundation of a monastery was laid to give respect to the goddess. The choirboys sing every morning and evening to show respect to the goddess which is on display in the 17-century Basilica. Taking a walk in the botanical gardens too will be very refreshing and will fill your day with peace and serenity.

There are many other places of interest like Alfàbia Gardens or the national park in Cebrera. Many tourists feel that the end of November and the beginning of December is the perfect time to travel to Mallorca. You will not need to worry about tourist crowds, travel costs for hotels and airline tickets etc. Even when the temperature drops, it doesn’t get very chilly in these areas due to the sea coast. Nature in Mallorca is outstanding and the best part of your trip to Mallorca, be it in winter or summer is to rent a car and explore the stunning landscapes of the Balearics. Happy Holidays!

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Tips for Holiday Travel With Your Pet

Most people travel for their holiday celebrations and they usually take their family with them. There are some that just can’t live without their pets as well. If you intend to travel with your pet you have to plan ahead to make the journey pleasant and comfortable for both you and the animal.

· Traveling by Car

If you are going for a road trip for the holidays, make sure that you do not let the pet loose inside your vehicle. You can get your pet a safety harness that can be attached to your car’s seat belt system. Or you can just put your pet in a cage. A pet carrier is also a good idea, but could be more expensive too. Always put your pet in the back seat.

· Traveling by Air

If you are flying to your destination, a pet carrier is a must to comply with airline regulations. Check with the airlines regarding the pet carrier dimensions to ensure that you will be buying the right-sized one. A pet can travel by air in the cabin if it doesn’t exceed 22 pounds in weight, 18 inches in length and 11 inches tall.

For international traveling, you will need certain documents for your pet before you can take it with you. It would best if you can give at least 6 weeks allowance to start taking care of the papers.

Do not travel with your pet unless you have it checked and vaccinated by the veterinarian. Always carry your pet’s current health certificate along with the record of vaccinations.

· Pet Foods

Take plenty of pet foods; you can never be sure if your pets’ favorite brand of pet foods will be available at your destination, so it is better to be sure.

· Feeding Instructions

If you are flying, feed your pet with a light snack 5 to 6 hours before departure. Do not give your pet any liquid 2 hours before departure. If you are going by the car, try not to feed your pet while you are moving.

· Put ID Tags

Whether you are taking your pet for domestic or international traveling, it is best if you can attach an ID tag to your pet. The ID tag must contain your home address and telephone number as well as your destination’s address and telephone number.

Before you take off it is also important to check if your pet is going to be welcome at your destination. If you are visiting relatives, you need to let them know that you will be bringing your pet. If you are staying at a hotel, check about the accommodation’s rules and regulations regarding pets.

Also make sure that your pet is travel-ready. Animals can be more fidgety than kids during long journeys. If your pet has never been anywhere else but home, you can start making him travel-ready by taking him to the supermarket, the park or at the mall.

Finally, try to be as patient as possible. You need to understand that you are not going to deal with your pet alone; you are also going to have to deal with other people’s reaction to your pet.

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Fiji – World Famous Honeymoon Destination

Fiji is one of the most notable honeymoon destinations in the recent years. It is not just one island, but a group of more than 300 islands, and one of the primary industries that supports the economy of Fiji is tourism. In addition to being a splendid destination for adventure sports such as scuba diving, snorkelling, fishing, mountain biking and boating, Fiji is also renowned as a place for romantic vacation.

Many of the resorts offer all-inclusive packages, from affordable to private and luxury. Those resorts normally provide the service to hold the spectacular wedding ceremonies and most of them have facilities to accommodate honeymooners. Yasawa Island Resort & Spa, Namale Resort and Spa, Turtle Island, Likuliku Lagoon Resort are some of the famous resorts just to name a few.

Lovers of nature can enjoy bird watching in Fiji’s several national parks and wildlife preserves. Many colorful species of parrots can be observed, as well as varieties of hawk, falcon, a rare dove, and the flying fox fruit bat.

When the sunset, Fiji turn alive with the pulsating nightclubs, bars and pubs stretch from Civic Auditorium to Albert Park and Victoria parade.Lovers may also choose to have a quiet and romantic candlestick dinner at their own resorts. Whatever your choice is, all visitors should not miss the cultural dance and performance by the native called Fiji Night that organized by most of the resorts.

Although there is some political instability in Fiji, it doesn’t retain visitors to flock over to this beautiful island. As the main source of income of Fiji is tourism, the local people and government are trying their best to ensure tourists’ safety by avoiding violence act.

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Lose a Significant Amount of Weight Between Thanksgiving and Christmas

If you’re anxious about Thanksgiving and Christmas time eating, there’s a diet that could be the solution to your problems. Eating at Thanksgiving and at Christmas can be a dieter’s nightmare. Constant temptation and tradition and emotion all wrapped up with a pretty bow on it, huh?

What can you do?

Should you ruin your holidays by fending off temptation? Or, should you roll with it and make up for the bad behaviour at the New Year when just about everyone and their brother is resolving to lose that spare tire?

The Holiday Diet

Consider doing the Calorie Shifting Diet between Thanksgiving and Christmas. There’s a window of a few weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas that are a great time to sacrifice and diet. This way, you can enjoy both holidays and still do a bit of damage control in the middle. Then January 1, go back on your diet wagon… if even necessary!

During those few weeks in the middle of the two fattening holidays, you might consider doing the calorie shifting diet because this is a diet that has many rave reviews of 7-10 pounds lost in 11 days through caloric cycling or zig zag dieting.

May will also do a cabbage soup / sacred heart detox diet.

What does this diet do?

The diet tricks your metabolism by having you zig zag and vary your caloric intake greatly and by giving you a specific diet menu to follow that releases fat burning hormones. Also, you’re eating 4 meals a day on this diet instead of 3 so your metabolism works much harder and helps you avoid the weight loss plateau. This diet can be done at any time of the year but doing it in early December can be helpful because:

1) You’ve gotten Thanksgiving out of the way

2) You’re going to be busy for a few weeks shopping and living before the real festivities hit.

3) This diet works in 11 day rotations with 3 day cheat days in between so this can even time well with some holiday parties.

Getting Started

Starting the diet around December 1 could result in up to 10 pounds lost by December 11.

Starting around December 5 could result in up to 10 pounds lost by December 16.

After the holidays are over, you’ll probably lose more than the typical 5 pounds that you gained over the holidays because most people lose 7-10 pounds.

This diet is available online with two components.

1) A Diet Guide

2) An online menu planner

The menu planner enables you to simply print off your menu and head to the grocery store for everything you need. Then, you simply eat what you’re told for each specific day. You’ll have 4 meals and you can eat them in any combination. There are no measurements or calorie counting and you simply eat until just before you’re full. There are other guidelines included such as plenty of water, going easy on the condiments and there are even tips for handling yourself at parties or restaurants which is a big dilemma for many dieters during the festive season.

The best thing about this type of plan is that you can do it whenever you need to. If you get to your goal weight in January and then fall of the wagon a little on a holiday or from some winter comfort eating, you can shed weight quickly by simply running the menu generator again and doing another 11 day stint.

If you’re reading this article too close to Christmas to get started on this diet, consider using if for your New Year’s Resolution diet.

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The Best European Destinations in Winter

Winter wears many disguises in Europe. As the north shivers under snowy blanket, the Mediterranean enjoys warm sunbeams. While Europe is breathtaking throughout the year, the Christmas spirit spread throughout the destination makes it a fantastical place to visit.

Rovaniemi, Finland

The official residence of Santa Claus is a must-see destination during the Christmas month. The saint in the red suit lives in a grotto which is free to visit. You can even visit the Arktikum museum to take a look at the history of this place. Make sure you bundle up because the temperatures here are simply astonishing making it one of the best European destinations in winter.

The Christmas Markets Austria & Germany

No matter what part of the world you’re in, you would have heard of the Christmas markets. These popular and romantic markets, that make Germany one of the best European destinations in winter seem to pop out of the ground all over Germany and serve delicacies such as mulled wine, handmade crafts and other holiday treats. If you want to make the most of the holiday season and take part in historic festivities, the Christmas markets are the perfect places to visit.

Copenhagen, Denmark

For a true fairy tale vacation, where else would you go to if not to the home of Hans Christen Andersen. Also home to the immensely popular Little Mermaid, the city’s true beauty lies within the cozy little cafes and bars. Warm the insides of your heart with a warm mug of glogg as you visit the beautiful illuminated 19th Century Tivoli Amusement Park.

Abisko, Sweden

For those who love hard core winters, Sweden is the place to be. Being one of the best European destinations in winter, it is the northernmost area that can be reached by train. The stunning aurora borealis paints the canvas of the sky between the months of December and January as the sun doesn’t rise for several weeks. Husky mushing and cross country skiing are just some of the exciting winter activities that you can take part in at the destination.

Athens, Greece

No matter what time of year it is, a visit to Europe would be incomplete if you missed out on Greece. The historical destination is beautiful during the summer but the winter makes it a little more special as the crowds disappear and you can explore on your own. Not only do you get a unique experience, you also save money on tourist pricing, don have to bear the intense heat or deal with air pollution. Make sure you don’t let this secret out or winters will soon be the same as summer.

Venice, Italy

Carnevale is an experience of a lifetime and should not be missed on any account. This February event held in one of the best European destinations in winter is surreal, majestic and hauntingly beautiful. Costumed dances and elaborate masks give a glimpse into the colorful history of the place.

Berlin, Germany

As the Postdamer Platz is converted into a winter wonderland during the winter, the city hums with excitement. Also housing some of the Christmas markets that are characteristic of Europe, what really is great about visiting Berlin are the winter activities that you can be a part of. Visit the ice rink, ski down some of the biggest slopes or slide down them on rubber tires.

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4 Thanksgiving Sex Tips for a Happy Penis

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and many couples like to take advantage of the season to engage in some extra sexual engagement. If a guy has been practicing good penis health, there’s no reason he can’t count on having an actively happy penis during the holiday. But the following sex tips can help ease the way for that special sex on Turkey Day.

Sex tips to consider

– Don’t get too stuffed. Sure, thanksgiving is about giving thanks and seeing family, but it’s all built around a massive dinner. If a guy and his partner want to do some special sexual stuffing on their own, they need to make sure they don’t overdose on all the food that’s weighing down the table. Eating too much can make sex more difficult – and can even dampen one’s sex drive. With that in mind, the couple he intends to enjoy special sex after dinner will need to force themselves to exercise a little discipline. Smaller portions may be required, or taking just a tiny bite of those items that really fill a guy up.

Or maybe make sex the appetizer. Of course, some people just can’t call up enough willpower to resist seconds (or thirds) of turkey and dressing and all those other goodies on the table. Couples who know this about themselves may want to plan on having sex before dinner. This can take some planning, of course, especially if one or both of you is involved in cooking and/or is hosting the dinner. For such people, scheduling some sex as soon as they arise from sleep may be the best bet.

– Consider different positions. Okay, so let’s say a couple thought they could hold off on overeating but found they were wrong. Missionary position may not be their best option with full tummies. Exploring alternate positions may be just the ticket. For the very stuffed, simply lying side by side and masturbating each other may be the best option. Or oral sex might be good, if both can stand putting one more thing in their mouths. For those interested in actual penetrative intercourse, a good bet is for the woman to lie face up on the edge of the bed, with her legs hanging down and touching the floor. The man can kneel (on top of pillows if height is needed) so that his soon-to-be happy penis is level with the vagina and his back straight up. In this position, neither distended stomach is coming in touch with the other.

– Get thematic. Make sex holiday-specific. Break the wishbone and the winner gets to choose what kind of sexual activity the pair will engage in. Bring leftovers to bed and enjoy licking cranberry sauce or gravy off of a partner’s privates. After properly sterilizing it, explore possible other uses for a turkey baster. Dress up as participants from the first Thanksgiving and see what fun can be had with feathers from a Native American headdress or a Pilgrim’s leather belt. Or each partner can simply take advantage of the holiday to communicate why they are thankful to be together with their partner and how much each means to the other.

These sex tips can help make for a happy penis on Thanksgiving. It will be even happier if a guys is a regular user of a first class penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin). The best crème is going to include vitamin A among its ingredients, and that will make both the guy and his partner happy. Why? Because vitamin A’s antibacterial properties help to eliminate persistent penis odor. A man should also be thankful for a crème that includes vitamin D3, the so-called “miracle vitamin.” In addition to fighting disease, this vitamin also supports healthy penile cellular function.

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Indonesia Java International Destination Resource

Getting confused in defining the destination for your long holiday? And do you want to make a very impressive holiday so that it will not be forgettable experiences you have along your live? The first thing, just think about the preparation for it! Prepare all the things which will be needed in supporting your holidays.

If you want to go to the mountain, beach, or lake, you should prepare all the equipments related to it. But if you want to get light holiday like visiting some cultural tourism, not many things you need. And if you have decided where you should go, decide which city or country you should visit.

I warrant you not to hurry first, save your money by deciding your holiday in the Indonesia Java International.

If you want to enjoy all the tourism objects in Java Islands, I may give you a little suggestion. If you want to start from the east side, you may land your plane in the Surabaya. You may pass trough the amazing Suramadu Bridge intentionally, and then get back. There are many charming tourism in East Java. You may go to the traditional markets and buy some souvenirs and special traditional foods in the East Java.

If you want to feel the beauty of the natural tourism, you may go to the Mount Bromo, and many other like beach, and the others challenging mountain to see. You may also go to the Safari Park to see the wealth of the fauna and flora in Indonesia.

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The Top Honeymoon Destinations In The World

One of the most expected moments after the wedding is definitely the honeymoon. Many couples consult a lot of travel agencies, choose the destination for their honeymoon and make reservations in advance in order to obtain the perfect honeymoon. If you are one of them, and if you try to find the perfect destination for celebrating this wonderful period of your marriage, here are some marvellous ideas.

Europe, a destination breathing romance

The old continent has always been a great holiday destination. Millions of people choose to spend their vacations in Europe, but it is especially the perfect place to spend a honeymoon. The capitals of some countries in Europe are among the most popular honeymoon destinations worldwide. Who among us has not dreamt of a visit in the City Of Lovers with the beloved person? Paris, the capital of France is famous for being the city of all lovers, the place where love can be seen everywhere: on the streets, in the chic cafes, in the historical monuments, everywhere. Whether you choose boating on the Seine or you prefer to enjoy yourself with the magnificent panorama that can be seen from the Eiffel Tower, Paris will always surprise you in a good manner.

Rome is another city recommended for the married couples to spend a nice honeymoon. Inhabited by Latin people, who are known as kind and loving, the capital of Italy expects lovers in any season of the year. The historical monuments in Rome, the amazing power of Italians to smile and love, the cozy music and the good food will transform Rome in an amazing honeymoon destination. Once you are in Italy, you cannot leave without visiting Venice, another city of love, or Verona, the city where a great love story developed: that of Romeo and Juliette. Vienna, Budapest, London, Moscow are also adequate destination for all tastes. All have different features, characteristics and places that deserve being seen. If you cannot decide yourself to pick one, then you are kindly advised to do an itinerary and make a short visit in all of them.

Choosing the seaside, your honeymoon will be wonderful

The seaside has always been considered to be a great holiday destination for the lovers all over the world. Taking a sunbath, swimming in the sea, dancing till the morning comes on the beach are only some of the favourite activities of the lovers. The islands in Greece, for example, have romantic places to visit and there are also some special itineraries and programs made especially for lovers. In Spain there are also some seaside resorts that expect you to spend a lovely holiday with your partner. In France, don’t forget to add the Cote D’Azur on your list. One of the most known seaside resorts in the entire world, this part of France is a very exotic place, just perfect for your honeymoon. There are also the islands in the Pacific Ocean, like Hawaii, Bora-Bora or Bahamas, where the sun shines all day long, and where the lovers can enjoy themselves in a lot of privacy. The sun setting in the evening would provide a wonderful opportunity to honeymoon couple to enjoy each other company in the nature.

Any decision you will make, the most important thing is to fully enjoy your time spent with the person you love, so make sure that those will be your best memories.

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Who Gets To Choose The Honeymoon Destination (Bride Or Groom)?

Like everything else about your wedding, honeymoon destinations and length of time you spend will largely be determined by budget. You may have set the budget for the honeymoon at the same time as the wedding, or you may be budgeting it separately. Either way, there should be a budget and ultimately your decisions will be determined by it.

That said, who does get to choose the destination for the honeymoon?

In my opinion, this is a joint decision. It’s a special time for both of you; time to relax after the frenzy of the wedding, time to spend some time alone and do some couples bonding. The choice for where to go for a honeymoon and what to do while you’re there is one that should provide the maximum amount of relaxation and pleasure for both of you.

One of you may have less interest in the details than the other. If you’re okay with doing most or all of the honeymoon planning yourself, make sure your partner really means it when he or she says, “I don’t care, you decide” – then take their word on it and make the choice yourself. There’s no time like the present to start learning to accept that you each have your own interests.

And if you’re reading this and thinking you’re the one who would say, “I don’t care, you decide,” my advice is to try and take SOME interest in the process. The two of you will be making a lot of decisions together over the years, and most of them will be much more important than where to go and what to do on your honeymoon. Crawl before you walk; in other words, start working together on the little things. Trust me, it will make it much easier for you to work together when the really tough decisions have to be made.

Even if one of you has less interest in where you go and what you do, try to be mindful of the things you’ve found in common during your courtship and use that knowledge when it comes to your honeymoon. Will both of you be happy lounging about on white sand while watching a tropical sunset? Or is one of you likely to suffer second-degree burns the first day, then spend the rest of the trip bathing in aloe vera?

Do you even have to have a honeymoon?

No, not really. American customs have changed significantly over the last 20 years. The honeymoon was traditionally not just a continuation of the celebration of their marriage, but the last time they could predictably be alone together before starting a family. People are marrying later in life, starting their families later in the marriage, and most couples go into a marriage with two incomes. Like everything else involved in a wedding, it’s just a tradition, not a rule.

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11 Ways To Organise Your Travel

Travelling is one of my passions.

I love meeting new people, seeing how they live and just talking to people from all over the world.

It can quickly become overwhelming co-ordinating all the details and organising all your clothes so this is how I organise my travel:

1. Start making lists well ahead of time. These can include lists of things to pack, things to do, things to see, meals to try, etc.

2. Always take extra plastic bags for dirty laundry, shoes, etc.

3. You don’t have to plan activities for each and every day but at least if you have a rainy day, you can look on your list and choose an indoor activity.

4. Count on buying things while you’re on holiday so plan for this and take less with you. Plan to take 10kg less than your baggage allowance so that you have plenty of space for all your shopping.

5. Decide on a colour palette and stick to it. I usually pack autumn colours like brown, yellow, orange and green. Each pair of pants will match with each of the tops.

6. Count the number of days you’ll be away and plan just enough sets of clothes, remembering that you always need more tops than bottoms. Even so, you won’t use all your clothes. Make a note of all the clothes you didn’t use so that you don’t overpack next time.

7. Pack travel-size toiletries or if you have some old hotel toiletries, use those. I keep my toiletry bag permanently packed and restock immediately when I return from a trip. This saves such a lot of time because all I ever have to do is pack clothes.

8. Always take a backpack. There is a reason why these are so popular with tourists – your hands are free to eat, browse, carry your water, etc.

9. If you read the Bible, next time you go away, don’t take the whole Bible. Simply go to an online site and print out a chapter for each day you’ll be away. You can try a different version of the Bible you usually use for added variety. The added convenience is that you don’t have to bring these pages back with you.

10. Whether you’re flying or driving, take any magazines or ebooks that have piled up around your house. You can catch up on your reading and again, leave the magazine or ebook in the airport lounge. I love doing this and it is the best way I catch up on magazine reading.

11. Take a notebook with you to journal or make some notes about the places you visit. It will help you remember your holiday with greater clarity especially once you’re back home.

And now that you’re organized, have a wonderful time and enjoy your holiday.

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Why Will Riga Be the Best Travel Destination in Europe?

You may earn and save a lot of bucks but will you get the satisfaction you get while exploring the bountiful parts of the God’s creation by just sitting and earning? No! There exists tranquillity in traveling and reading all the chapters written by God. Traveling to Europe makes you aware of the history and culture of a fairytale castle.

Riga, the largest capital of Latvia, is perfect cobblestones and culture. What makes Riga the best travel destination in Europe? Riga Latvia sightseeing would be a perfectly justified answer to this question. There are plenty of things you can do in Riga while exploring the enticing history and culture hidden in the stones of the city.

Riga has many churches but the wonderful view of the old town from the top of the St. Peter’s Church must not be missed. Admiring the cobblestones of the city from the top and then visiting the holy church is serene.

Planning to go on a picnic with your family? Prepare for the picnic buy from the huge space of Riga central market where hundreds of traders trade day and night in fruits and fresh organic foods. Talking about the foods and drinks of Riga, the traditional drink of Riga i.e. the Black Balsam should not be missed. It is recommended to have a sip of this drink before you leave the city.

What about going on a free walking tour around the city? Such tours are organized at around 11 a.m. in the city and you get to know more about the history of the city with the help of guidebooks.

Visit the oldest museum in Riga, the Sun Museum which depicts how different countries see the sun. You can have some amazing astronomical learning from this museum.

If not visited the historical places of the city, you have missed the major travel experiences in Riga. Blackheads House is one of those places have a great historical significance of the city.

Freedom Monument is one of the most astonishing monuments in Riga. Having a copper lady statue on the top of the building makes it even lovelier.

Well, after exploring the art and history, one must miss the nightlife of Riga. Don’t miss the fun of loud partying at night with the friendly locals, bars, and hubs for parties. Riga is now becoming one of the trending spots for night parties and fun.

Well, now there is no doubt left why Riga is the best travel destinations in Europe. Take the benefit of service of Riga Latvia sightseeing tour and make the most of your travel. Travel to the most wonderful destinations in Riga and explore each bit of the exotic city. Take a much-needed break from work and set yourself free traveling the best destinations of Riga.

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11 Amazing Travel Tips to Enjoy Holidays

To spend holidays with loved ones is always a fun activity. However, you will find many people, who claim that they did not enjoy their holiday trip despite getting best travel deals. Here you need to understand that to spend an enjoyable holiday is not just about getting right travel deals but it is also about appropriate planning, budgeting, and then packing. If you are also planning to go for vacations then apart from getting best travel deals to make your trip economical yet splendid, there are various tips, which you should keep in your mind. These tips are as follows:

1. If you are planning a vacation alone, then select the holiday destination of your choice but if you are planning it with your friends or family members then take their consent too.

2. Budget your holidays and for this, make sure that you know the estimated cost of everything before your budgeting phase. Keep in mind that once you will know that how much best accommodation deals will cost you only then you will be able to buy them for your convenient stay at your dream place.

3. Try to plan your budget in an appropriate manner to enjoy a holiday. However, it depends on your approach. For example, if you want to spend your holidays in a luxury hotel in London then you can save money to make this dream come true. This will be your hard work to make your dream come true. In the case of smart work, you can search for best luxury hotel deals in London to save some pennies.

4. To get luxury hotel deals anywhere, you want is not a problem, these days. However, if you have a strict budget, then always either prefer budget hotels or get discount hotel rooms in luxury hotels to stay within your budget.

5. Always reserve your flight tickets and discount hotel rooms in advance to avoid any hassle later on.

6. Pack your luggage few days before your departure to your dream world. Do not forget to keep the clothes after laundry. Moreover, try to avoid taking clothes, which need ironing.

7. Pack your belongings according to the weather conditions of your holiday destination. Do not forget to keep a hat with you, as it will keep you safe in every kind of weather condition. However, the type of hat to be carried along may vary. For example, if you are about to visit any place in winter then a woollen knitted hat will be proved handy, as it will keep your warm.

8. Avoid taking new shoes. Just think what you will do if you will find your new shoes uncomfortable. However, in case, you are packing new clothes of yours for holidays then always give them a trial first before packing them.

9. To pack all your belongings in a travel bag with wheels will prove handy, as it will be easy for you to drag it anywhere you want without applying much force.

10. Do not forget to keep all your documents. It is highly recommended to also keep one set of the photocopy with you especially while travelling to another country or continent. Moreover, email their scanned copy to your email address as well.

11. Always keep a first aid travel kit with you to deal with emergencies during your trip.

Hence, keep all these above-mentioned handy tips in mind to enjoy your holiday travel at best.

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Best Holiday Destination in South Africa – KwaZulu-Natal

When I think of the key reasons people travel to South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal offers them all – so I thought it would be interesting to run through those reasons and show you how KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) has the answer.

Scenery. South Africa’s stunning landscapes and gorgeous coastline is a major draw card, and it’s safe to say that KZN has some of the best scenery in the country. Top of the list would be the Drakensberg Mountains, towering and impenetrable (their Zulu name translates as “Barrier of Spears”). They are a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and offer a variety of experiences to the visitor, from short hikes to overnight trails, and from wildlife to millennia-old San rock-art. From mountains that touch the sky, we move through to golden beaches that meet the ocean. Along the Elephant Coast are mile upon mile of deserted beach, fringed with luscious coastal forest and pitted with the nests of endangered turtles: an inspiring landscape if ever there was one.

Culture. With its eleven official languages and many, many different tribes and ethnic groups, South Africa loves to showcase its culture. In KZN, as the name suggests, this means the Zulu culture. A proud tribe, built on the military might that gave the British a bloody nose at Isandlwana (more of which later), the Zulus are making great efforts to preserve their traditional customs and practices, and a visit to a traditional homestead is one way to see this in action; it’s also very likely that at some point during your time in the province you’ll be treated to a display of the energetic, athletic and entrancing Zulu dancing.

History. The history of South Africa, from the advent of European settlers right through to the end of apartheid is tumultuous and holds a special fascination. KZN’s major slice of that history is the Anglo-Zulu and Anglo-Boer wars. Names like Isandlwana, Rorke’s Drift and Spionkop resonate through the intervening century, and are dramatically bought to life by absolutely superb battlefield guides. Immediacy is the key to these battlefield tours: you’re standing on the exact spot where this soldier and that Zulu warrior clashed: in many cases we know their names and their backgrounds, we know how they fought and how they died. It’s incredibly moving.

Cosmopolitan City Life. Cities like Cape Town are a huge draw for visitors to South Africa, and Durban is right in the front rank of South African cities. Recent redevelopment, thanks in part to the FIFA World Cup, has seen Durban transformed. Next to the harbour is the impressive uShaka Marine Park, start of a boulevard of several miles linking the fantastic beaches of the city (Durban’s Golden Mile) with the impressive Moses Mabhida Stadium. Visitors can fly into the gleaming new international airport and stay in a growing array of smart, boutique hotels, and eat in stylish restaurants. As a place to bookend your travels around the province, Durban is hard to beat.

Relaxation. South Africa is all about relaxing, chilling out and enjoying great weather, wonderful food and gorgeous local wines; fortunately KZN is well able to deliver on this front as well. Just outside Durban you’ll find the Midlands, a beautiful area of gently rolling countryside, dotted with perfect little country getaways. These hotels have made a real name for themselves offering beautiful accommodation and the most amazing food – wholesome, decedent meals paired with selections from extensive and impressive wine cellars. It’s an amazing way to unwind for a couple of days (though not too much longer if you’re keeping an eye on your waistline!).

Wildlife. I’ve left wildlife till last because for so many people it’s a major highlight of their trips to South Africa: saving the best for last! I’ve already mentioned the wildlife of the Drakensberg Mountains – you’ll find herds of enormous, mystical eland here as well as the Lammergeier (or Bearded) Vulture. But it’s big game safari that most people want to see, and KZN really delivers. It’s a province right at the forefront of eco-tourism and conservation. The vast Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Reserve in the heart of KZN can claim to be the place the rhino was saved from extinction, as all the initial rebreeding work for the white rhino took place here in the 50’s and 60’s. Nearby Phinda Private Game Reserve was one of the first game reserves to take farmland and return it to its indigenous condition, letting the natural vegetation grow back and reintroducing the wildlife that had been absent for decades; the result is a wonderful reserve with excellent opportunities for viewing big game.

So when you add it all together, you can see that KwaZulu-Natal really does have it all. A two week trip round the province will allow you to experience the very best it has to offer and is a microcosm of everything that’s best about South Africa.

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How to Keep Your Dog From Misbehaving During the Holiday Season

Is the stress of the holiday season causing your dog to misbehave? There are many reasons that can cause your dog to misbehave during this stressful time of the year. Let’s take a look at some of the causes.

Any change in your dog’s daily routine can cause your dog anxiety particularly during this holiday season. Try to limit the amount of change at this time as this can greatly reduce your dog’s anxiety and may help prevent any accidents, confusion or depression from happening to your dog.

Preparing your dogs daily meals at the same time will go a long way in preventing your dog from sampling any of the special dishes you may have on the table or counter. If your dog is sensitive to table food avoid leaving these special dishes out as this could lead to diarrhea, vomiting or other health issues.

Keep up your schedule of exercising your dog as this will also ward off any stress your dog may feel. It will also keep him happy and well rested later on in the day when activities in the household get even busier. Sticking to his daily walking routine will also benefit you as well by keeping your stress levels down too.

Prepare for your guests to arrive by providing your dog with an extra activity by making him feel safe and secure in a familiar spot with a well deserved treat. This will eliminate your dog from greeting your guests aggressively or running out the door when they arrive.

Finally, try to avoid extra smells or different types of new sounds that your dog is not familiar with. Such as ringing bells, loud music, flashing Christmas tree lights, flowers, scented candles and spices. Introducing all these things at one time will not be a good experience for your dog at all.

So, taking a few minutes and with a little extra preparation around the home you can ensure your dog a safe and happy holiday season as well as for you and your invited guests.

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Top 6 Kayaking Destinations In The World

As a kayaker, whether it’s a slow-paced adventure you want or slicing and curving your way through a white curtain of water, there are destinations to fulfill any kayaker’s wish list. When considering the top kayaking destinations, there are several factors that have to be looked at. These factors include closeness to nature, varied and abundant wildlife and adventure. Opportunities for all skills level play a role in considering the best destination. The above factors are not the only factors. We have just named a few.

Kayaking is an exciting sport and recreation activity for all ages. It provides great full-body work out. Moreover, every kayaker gets to enjoy the surrounding natural environment as close as possible. As much there are great and exciting places for kayaking in the world, there are destinations that every kayaker should never miss. Some of the top kayaking destinations are:

1. Glacier bay, Alaska:

Since John Muir visited Glacier Bay in 1879, the area has opened up countless fjords and bays for the sea kayaking and it has offered 16 tide water Glacier to explore. The area offers another bonus, that is, one has the best chances to witness the stages of plant succession left by retreating glaciers. The ‘bush’ in Alaska, as it is known locally, composes of tundra, marshlands and scores of active volcanoes along with the Aleutian islands, a 300-strong archipelago strung out like Christmas lights between America and Asia.

Alaska is a home to a mesmerizing diversity of wildlife. Terrestrial fauna include wolves, beavers and moose while the peninsula waters abound with sea lions, whales and sea colonies. Alaska is a massive place with an abundance of options for adventure lovers and the question is how to fit it all in so as to get the best out of all the options available in Alaska.

2. Kayaking in Baja, Mexico.

With about 2000 miles of wild, rugged coastline and only a short drive from the U.S, makes the Gulf of California a top kayaking destination in the world. It steers through coves, around boulders, into caves, to empty beaches or watch whales on the many kayaking routes offered here. There are about 100 islands in the California Gulf with about half of them protected as ultra bio diverse reserve sites and all of them surrounded by crystal blue seas. The weather in this area is temperate all year around and enjoys calmer seas thanks to the shielding by the peninsula itself.

As you tour Baja, you are sure to see marine animals that visit this secluded paradise while kayaking through easy going and clear waters and marveling at the enchanting backdrops of the islands. Aside from kayaking, the region is now seeing a return to its unique biodiversity which was once threatened due to overfishing. In Baja Mexico, there are large colonies of endemic to the region as well as staggering number of rare plant species that are about 3500 species in total, many of them found nowhere else on earth.

3. Kayaking in New Zealand.

New Zealand literally has everything to offer. Along with the giant national park, it has excellent spots for kayaking. The bay has remote coves, beaches, caves, and year around tropical weather so you can visit whenever you have time. New Zealand provides a wide variety of wildlife. Milford sound is the biggest attraction in New Zealand and it was formed over millions of years of glacial activities.

Milford sound offers unequally beauty the scale and majesty of which sets it aside from anywhere else on the planet. The mountains in this area are huge and lush with vegetation, waterfalls cascade hundreds of meters down vertical cliff faces and the seas coursing through the valleys which are very clear. When ascending up through lush beech rainforest and into alpine environment at the top, you are rewarded with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, alpine lakes and deep bush clad valleys.

4. Dalmatian coast in Croatia

The Croatian coastline is filled with pine forest and limestone cliffs. It’s not necessarily the tropical paradise you find in the south pacific, but it’s a unique and appealing trip that you surely won’t forget. The large amount of islands off the Croatian coasts will give you plenty of choices for where to go.

5. Greek Islands.

For those of us who prefer real Kayaking, Greek islands provide thousands of excellent sea kayaking waters. In these islands where sea kayaking is civilized, it is possible to paddle from one island to another. There are loads of remote coves and site that you can kayak to.

One of the islands in the Cyclades in Greece is Milos. It has a mamma Mia-like setting of turquoise blue seas, matching the skies and pale golden sands. Milos’ main claim to fame is that it’s the place where the Venus de Milo statue was found in 1820, but man-made artifacts pale in comparison when you set eyes on the Milos’ natural beauty. Milos’ moon-like landscape, where rocky crops of burnt reds, earthy browns and stark whites get together, is a big scene-stealer in any ancient artifact. Since you will be sea kayaking Milos’ coastline, you will be able to go where most other boats can’t.

6. The West Coast of Scotland.

The west coast of Scotland is home to myriads of sea lochs, inlets and island dotted amongst an achingly beautiful highlands panorama and it is hard to think of a better way of exploring the area than in a sea kayak.

Scotland is blessed with all types of fantastic water to go kayaking on, but its coastline and the sea kayaking that it offers that is truly a jewel in its watery crown. Walking along the Scottish coastlines, you get to see thousands of miles of inlets, sea caves, coves and island to explore and the sea kayak is the perfect craft for the job.

Everywhere you go, you will encounter a plethora of wildlife, ancient culture and the Scottish people are famous for their hospitality. The west coast offers some fantastic sandy beaches, rugged reefs and wildlife in abundance. You get to enjoy the beauty of the area as seals swim curiously under your boat. It is simply a magical sea kayaking area.

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Stay Sober: 5 Tips for the Holiday Season in Recovery

Here are 5 tips to help you maintain your sobriety as the holidays approach. If you are an alcoholic, getting sober is one of the hardest things you may ever do, staying sober will be the hardest, and you need all the help you can get. Read these tips, one of them may just save your life.

1. Stay out of slippery places. Only attend a function with alcohol being served if you have a legitimate reason to be there.

2. Don’t depend on someone else to get you home from the occasion. Drive your own car, and make sure you park in a way that you won`t be blocked in. If you don’t have a car, make sure you have cab fare and a cell phone. You should also have your sponsor’s phone number.

3. Know what you are going to drink before you get there, and order something that comes in a can or bottle that you can open yourself. Stay away from ‘mocktails’ or ‘near beer’!

4. If you have to set your drink down to use the washroom, or other reason, get a new one. Don’t pick up your old drink, it may have been tampered with, and you also run the risk of picking up the wrong drink.

5. Be very aware of everything going in your mouth. Many holiday treats are laced with alcohol. Liquor filled chocolates, rum balls, tiramisu are relapses waiting to happen. Remember you have an allergy to alcohol, and even a tiny bit can set off your physical craving. You may not even know why, if you were careless about what you ate.

Be good to yourself. You deserve to be happy, joyous and free, and live to see another season, and the best gift you can give your loved ones is a healthy you.

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Benefits Of Using A Destination Management Company And Event Management Companies

Mutual trust is crucial for relationships to be successful. Be assured that you are in good hands when working with an a Destination Management Company (DMC) because these companies use only the highest quality practices as their standard and they demonstrate the ultimate level of commitment and knowledge to the destination management industry.

The DMC will conduct an initial needs evaluation in order to prepare a custom proposal to best match the client’s program budget and needs. This ensures that no time or money is wasted with irrelevant proposals. DMCs also work with Event Managers to ensure that any meeting, incentive, conference or event being planned is within the client’s budget. Because these they have years of experience in the travel industry, they have the ability to negotiate rates and terms where possible to maximise the client’s budget and experience.

From start to finish, the entire process of business/group travel is simplified when working with a Destination Manager. A full proposal that includes costs for consideration will be ready within forty-eight hours of contacting a DMC with an enquiry to their destination.

Using a such a company is more beneficial than going direct because of the strong buying power DMCs have gained through years, sometimes decades of experience. Also, because these companies are located locally, they have an abundant knowledge of their destination and can use this experience to help their clients.

The use of a quality Event Management Companies brings many benefits to clients, as well. Event Management know everything there is to know about hotels, convention centres, entertainment, and all the details in-between because they spend weeks studying these options before they present them to any client. The target audience, planning, and coordinating the logistics and any other technical aspects are identified long before the arrival date of the event because the Event Management Companies spend time examining the intricacies of the brand.

All this has become increasingly necessary because of the ever growing size of events in the business world today. It is not uncommon for Event Management Companies to put together events for groups consisting of a couple thousand people. As imagined, working out the details of flights, ground transportation, and hotel rooms becomes a nightmare when dealing with groups this large.

To add to the complications of group travel, dynamic pricing for hotels has been a business travel trend that has become increasingly recognizable by experts in the field. This is a similar pricing scheme to that of airlines where the cost fluctuates depending on the season and how busy they are. Groups will have to spend more time researching their destination and hotels in order to get a good price on rooms; hence another reason why using a Destination Management Company is beneficial. The employment of a Destination Management Company and Event Management Companies ensures that travellers will be advised of good dates and receive the best discounts on rooms.

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The Perfect Christmas Holiday – 10 Reasons to Choose Schwangau – The Neuschwanstein Castle

If you are looking for a romantic and luxurious Christmas holiday, I will share a well-kept secret with you: Go to Schwangau and see the Neuschwanstein Castle village at the border of Germany and Austria.

Having lived in Dubai during the boom years, and seeing new buildings emerge like mushrooms, I cannot believe how unspoiled the Neuschwanstein Castle area is. Despite more than 1 million tourists visiting Neuschwanstein every year (and 3 more castles in a 3 mile radius), there are no high-risers, no ugly modern buildings (a tribute to a great local government who puts tradition over financial gains). Instead you will feel as if time has stood still: old farms and mountain chalet style houses abound and you still see farmers on their bicycles leading their small herds along the road to the pasture – a marvelous heart-warming sight in a first world country. So here are my top 10 reasons for spending your winter and Christmas Holiday in Schwangau and the Neuschwanstein Castle area.

1. Magic Neuschwanstein Castle & The King Ludwig Story

Neuschwanstein Castle is one of the most famous and arguably the most beautiful castle in the world. It attracts more than 1 million visitors per year from all over the world and even inspired Walt Disney to come up with the Magic Kingdom/ Cinderella castle. Through Hollywood The Magic Kingdom and Cinderella Castle, however, might be even better known than the stunning original in the Alpine mountains of Bavaria. Neuschwanstein Castle was built by King Ludwig II in Bavaria. His mysterious death in a nearby lake remains the substance for rumours to this day.

2. Great Skiing and Winter Sport Opportunities (downhill, nordic, ice skating)

Within a 5-30 minutes drive you will have no less than 5 ski resorts and 140km of slopes for downhill skiing / snowboarding / ski touring at your disposal. There are slopes for all abilities and ski schools as well as ski/snowboard rental opportunities in almost every resort. Almost all resorts provide a snow-garantuee providing additional powder snow should the weather not comply. With mountain huts scattered all over the Alpine mountains, you will find plenty of reasons to stop for sunbathing on the terraces sipping a hot drink or enjoying a plate of rustic mountain hut food, like “Kässpatzen” (small local noodles tossed in mountain cheese) or “Kaiserschmarrn” (torn pancake with raisins and almonds topped with apple or cherry sauce). You can even go night-skiing right under Neuschwanstein castle. Schwangau also provides 30 km of nordic skiing tracks, 2km of which are also flood-lit at night. Finally, there are tobogganing slopes from many mountain huts and in most ski resorts and ice skating opportunities on one of the 6 lakes in the immediate neigbhourbood.

3. Romantic German Christmas Markets

German Christmas Markets (“Weihnachstmarkt”) are famous for their cosy and romantic Christmas atmosphere. You wouldn’t want to miss them. Schwangau runs a culinary Christmas Market in November and Füssen, the medieval cobble-stoned town 3 miles away runs a magic Christmas Market most of December. Imagine strolling through a maze of stalls displaying treasures from wood-carved figures, “nutcrackers”, little pottery items to all kinds of Christmas decorations while the air is filled with the sweet smell of mulled wine and freshly baked waffles.

4. Wellness Opportunities to Relax & Treat Yourself

There are plenty of wellness offers in the area such as massages, sauna, light therapy etc. Of special interest are the hot pools at the royal spa thermal bath (“Königliche Kristalltherme”). Connected indoor and outdoor pools allow you to enjoy the warm steaming water while raising your head in the ice-cold air – just imagine the feeling of snow flakes falling all around you melting instantly as they hit the warm water. Across the fields you see the nordic skiers sliding by and against the mountain behind them emerges Neuschwanstein Castle. An experience not to be missed !

5. Breath-taking Horse-sledge Rides through the Winter Wonderland to See Wild Deer Being Fed

You can rent your own horse-drawn sledge or join one of the regularly scheduled excursions to the castles, the mountain huts or the deer feeding area in the woods. Wrapped up in warm blankets you’ll enjoy the clean fresh air and the breath-taking panoramic views of snow covered mountains and white valleys. One of my personal favourites is seeing the wild deer being fed so close to you that you can nearly touch them. To avoid them rushing away, you’ll hardly dare to breathe trying to stay silent as you see the majestic male deer slowly approaching the rest of the herd: a magic encounter with the wild !

6. Dramatic New Year’s Eve Fireworks Wherever You Look

In Germany New Year’s Eve is always celebrated with fireworks wherever you look. Everyone in this country can buy and launch their own and most families do. Why not try it yourself while you are here? Imagine watching the fireworks over one of the castles holding your loved one(s) and making a wish for the new year ahead. It makes for an unforgettable moment. After midnight many families engage in a tradition called “Bleigießen” (lead pouring) to predict everyone’s good fortune for the new year. Little pieces of lead are melted in little pans over the flame of a candle. Once the lead is liquid you pour it into a bowl of cold water where it instantly forms a shape. Everyone then has fun interpreting the meaning of this shape to predict the pourer’s fortune for the coming year. You can buy the full “lead pouring” kit at supermarkets in Germany. Good luck J !

7. Delicious Local Food Specialities

The local food is delicious and you will find plenty of restaurants to choose from. Pork dishes like “Schweinshaxe” (pork knuckle) are frequent but game and fish are also local specialities as is the famous “Apfelstrudel” with vanilla sauce or ice cream. A local speciality is the “Brotzeit” which are big platters with cold cut meat and cheese served with fresh German bread, freshly baked “Brezen” (big soft pretzels) and bread rolls. Finally, there is variety of local beers to try and why not visit the local brewery or the cheesemaker for a guided tour on how those delicacies are created?

8. Luxury & Rustic Hotels and Holiday Accommodation

There are lots of cosy holiday apartments and luxurious hotel rooms to choose from. Lately more and more luxury holiday apartments cater to the growing demand for a truly relaxing and luxurious holiday. Most architecture is kept in the typical “Allgaeu” style, a variation of the mountain chalet using lots of wood on the facade and featuring wooden balconies on several sides of the house. There are also many working farms which offer accommodation combined with an experience of true farm life. For a first world country and the village of the King’s Castles Schwangau has an astonishing amount of dairy farms. So get ready to hear the gentle ring of the cow bells wherever you stay 🙂

9.Welcoming and Friendly People Who Celebrate Their Traditions

From the moment we arrived in this region, people have been extraordinarily friendly and forthcoming. They are helpful, authentic and genuine. Everyone takes great pride in their traditions and heritage and all through the year there are festivals displaying local dance, music, clothing (“Lederhosen” and “Dirndl”) and of course beer. Most people in Schwangau speak enough English to hold a conversation and many do so readily with astonishing fluency. There is also a growing international community in the region and of course tourists from all over the world. This makes Schwangau a true “international village”. When you come drop me an email and I will help you with insider knowledge about this dream location.

10.Great History

With so much natural beauty, high Alpine mountains and crystal clear mountain lakes all in the same small region, it is hardly surprising that the bishops and German Kings built their castles here. Even the Romans and Celts had decided to settle here. In fact, the Via Claudia Augusta, one of the big Roman trading roads leads right through Schwangau joining the province of Germania through Austria to Rome. You can find Roman pillars and visit a whole Roman villa on your magic trip to this exceptional place.

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4 Characteristics Of Taiwan As A Tourist Destination

Taiwan is an island nation that has made its mark in the technology industry and is one the main tourist destinations in Asia. Taiwan is one location that boasts of scenic mountains and lush green fields. Millions of tourists flock to Taiwan to enjoy cheap hospitality, idyllic locations and get a glimpse of their culture and history. So, what is it about Taiwan that draws big crowds who want to visit again and again?

Four characteristics of Taiwan

1. History

Taiwan boasts of a history spanning thousands of years. Related to mainland China, they share common ancestry with the Chinese. Colonial powers like the Dutch and the Portuguese controlled them for hundreds of years. This ensures a culmination of western and eastern cultures into one place. Their history is littered with innovation and exotic societal aspects. They have many well stocked national museums that have preserved artifacts dating back to centuries. Tourists get acquainted with the rich culture of Taiwan during visits to the museum.

2. People

For any tourist destination to hold its charm, the people should be friendly and courteous. Taiwanese people are naturally friendly and welcome tourists as one of their own. The major population of Taiwan is a mixture of Japanese people in the minority and the Chinese people in the majority. Apart from that, many immigrants from Indonesia, Philippines live harmoniously side by side with the Taiwanese people. Tourist feel one at home once they land in Taiwan.

3. Festivals

Taiwan is one of the places in the worlds that can boast about hundreds of festivals. Tourists throng Taiwan to get a chance to take part in celebrations. Prominent amongst them include Chinese New Year, Ching Ming Festival, the Dragon Boat festival, Mid-Autumn festival, etc. These festival help promote the spirit of cooperation and national unity in Taiwan. Many Taiwan travel tour packages give you an opportunity to enjoy the splendor of Taiwanese festivals.

4. Climate

Taiwan boasts of a temperate climate. It is neither too warm nor too cold in Taiwan. The tall mountains of Taiwan ensure a cool environment at the top. It is definitely an experience to visit Taiwan and enjoy its heavenly climate. You should head towards the Taiwanese beaches to take full advantage of beautiful seaside shores and clear skies. Taiwan holiday packages enable you to visit Taiwan and absorb the beautiful climate to the full extent.

The above four characteristics help Taiwan portray itself as a tourist Mecca aided by tour and travel packages to Taiwan.

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How the Devil Did Satan Take Over Halloween?

Most of the young trick-or-treaters, prowling the dusky gloom on Halloween, don’t really care much about the background of the holiday/holy day they are celebrating. Dressed in various costumes as goblins and ghosts, heroes or old-time villains, these children unwittingly act out ancient traditions that began with a Celtic pagan festival some 20 centuries ago in Europe, and gradually evolved into the Catholic celebration on the eve of the feast of All Saints. Much of the tradition, however, is obscured by the relentless passage of time and fading memories.

One thing is certain about the celebration: the devil had no part in it. He was later added to the celebration gradually after St. Patrick brought Christianity to Ireland in 432 A.D. Up to that time, the Irish and other Celtic peoples such as the Scots, Welsh, Cornish, Bretons and others had no notion of a devil in their worship.

But they did have a strong sense of an afterlife which as called simply “otherworld.” The Irish Celts called it “Tir na Nog” (land of eternal youth). It was a joyous place. It was more a land of enchantment and a paradise in the Western Sea.

Reigning over this otherworld was Samhain (pronounced “sow-en) who was known as the “Lord of the Dead.” But he had no relationship whatever to the devil.

Even today in Ireland, one of the Celtic countries where the ancient customs still survive, All Hallows Eve (Halloween) before All Saints’ Day is known as Samhain Eve. The following day marks the beginning of the Celtic New Year, Nov. 1, and also marks the end of the grazing season and the gathering of all crops for the winter.

According to ancient Celtic custom, all fires had to be extinguished and new ones lighted to set off a new year of abundance and light, and another victory for the sun over darkness.

For the ancient Celts, Halloween could also be a night of danger and dread as a time when otherworld spirits roamed freely. The Celts left “treats” on their doorsteps for the spirits of their ancestors, and carved out oversized rutabagas or turnips and placed a candle inside these “spirit lights” to guide their ancestors home. It could be a night of either happiness or discomfort depending on the relationship between families and their ancestors.

The spirits of the otherworld could also return to even an old score to demand justice for a previous injustice done to them. Hence the Celts began to wear costumes and masks as a way to hide from vengeful ancestors. It was also a time when the future could be understood by following certain practices such as bobbing for apples. When one was caught, the apple was peeled and the skins thrown over one’s shoulder. The peels were then supposed to indicate the name of a future spouse or other important information.

The Celts also believed that black cats crossing a person’s path would bring bad luck. The Celts believed the black cats were former beings who were changed into animals as a form of punishment for having done evil. The Celts also believed that spirits lived in the trees, and would, therefore “knock on wood” to assure that their good luck would continue. This may well be part of the understanding of the use of the term “the luck of the Irish.” But it was also used to explain away their great success as immigrants, especially in the United States.

Before coming to America as a holiday, Halloween had other religious origins. There is still much debate as to how the feast of All Saints came to replace the old Celtic festival. About 610 A.D. the Roman Emperor Phocas presented Pope Boniface IV with the Roman Pantheon-the temple where pagan Roman gods and goddesses were worshipped. The Pantheon was then rededicated under the title “Santa Maria ad Martyres” (St. Mary of the Martyrs.) The dedication ceremony was held May 13, and its anniversary was observed each year with great ceremony. Some historians consider this to be the origin of the feast of All Saints.

Other scholars insist that pope Gregory III originated the feast when he dedicated an oratory to all saints in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. It seems that from this time on, at least in England, the feast was celebrated on Nov. 1.

However, noted scholar J. Hennig rejects both of these explanations and places the origin of the Nov. 1 date in Ireland. According to this theory, the feast passed from Ireland to Northnumberland in England, and then to the continent of Europe where other Celtic peoples would also align it with their New Year’s celebration. It should also be noted that at this period Irish missionaries had already begun their travels to England and the continent, and had great influence in church matters in that area.

Whatever the exact pagan Celtic or Christian origin of Halloween, we can thank their modern counterparts, the Irish and Scots-Irish for preserving such a joyful children’s feast.

The Irish were largely responsible or bringing their customs and celebrations to America in the mid-19th century when thousands of them crowded the shores of the United States following the Great Famine of 1847-50 in Ireland. They had spread their empire and customs from the islands of the Atlantic Ocean to the Black Sea, and from the Mediterranean to the North Sea.

These energetic and inventive people have given the world a zest for living, an incredible supply of sages and legends and a great modern literature from writers such as Shaw, Yeats, O’Casey, Beckett, Joyce and others.

And also with all that, they gave a Catholic/Christian meaning to an ancient holiday and brought Halloween to America for the enjoyment of trick-or-treaters all over the land.

But they didn’t bring Satan or devil-worship to a joyous celebration of the Celtic New Year, Nov. 1.

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Maximizing Your Caribbean Vacation – Destination Jamaica

Jamaica! The island of sun, fun and care-free living is only a hop, skip and a jump away from the American coastline, only about 90 miles south of Cuba. But once you’re there you are in a whole other world. Jamaica is a little over 4,200 square miles in size so there is a lot of activity that will make your vacation there worth the short trip. It was not easy to leave Jamaica in the early days not only because transportation was slow but because the law required that no one could leave the island without first publicly advertising his intentions three weeks in advance. This was mainly to protect creditors from people, including captains of ships, who refused to pay and then skipped the country, but that is all history now!

The Island of Jamaica is filled with a rich history of Spanish and British rule before it gained its own independence in 1962, making the island country extremely diverse in culture and customs. Jamaica is divided into 14 parishes, which are grouped into three historic counties; Cornwall, Middlesex and Surrey. “Out of Many, One People” is the Jamaican Motto that speaks for itself.

The outdoor life in Jamaica varies from ocean viewed towns to the Blue Mountains, which dominate the inland area. Tourist attractions include Dunn’s River Falls in St. Ann, YS Falls in St. Elizabeth, and the Blue Lagoon in Portland. Jamaica’s climate is tropical, and it supports a diverse ecosystem with an abundance of plants and animals, though the islands plant life has changed considerably over the centuries, due to the European settlers who originally cut down the great timber trees for building and ships’ supplies, and then cleared the plains, savannas, and mountain slopes for intense agricultural cultivation. But a large bit of the tropical forest still exists and can be accessed.

Vacations are meant to be fun and care-free, but planning your vacation ahead of time will help road block many problems that you may not normally have considered. While you are planning your next getaway vacation to Jamaica you need to consider the many things that you will need while you are there. Most people will remember their toothbrushes and socks but the things that you forget to plan for will certainly become the most important ones when you find yourself there without them. Whether you are planning a Caribbean cruise, a Jamaican vacation to Montego Bay, or just a weekend away; you should consider the expense of a few extras that can come in handy. Tours, restaurants, airport shuttle services, taxi fares, car rental, are the normal things that vacationers consider while planning their spending budget. International cellphone rentals that will help you stay connected while out of your own phones service area.

You would normally already have gathered information on such things as the places in Jamaica, Montego Bay weather, Jamaican facts, Jamaican airports, Tourism in Jamaica, Hotels and other accommodations on the Islands you will have most of your basics covered.

Most Americans eat, sleep, and live by their cell phones it would be very impractical for us to go through a vacation without having the connection that we have all grown to rely upon. But what happens when you arrive there and your home cell phone service forgot to pack its bag? Don’t be left feeling disconnected from the world outside of your vacation, and make sure that you plan well with an international cell phone rental.

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Top Tips for Travelling With Pets

For those with pets, going away on holiday means that you’ll have to decide on the best way to care for your pets while you are gone. Most pet lovers can’t bear to leave behind much a valued family member. To ease your mind, we have compiled a list of great tips to help you travel with your pets.

By Plane

If you’re flying, check the requirements and conditions for pets outlined by the specific airline you are travelling with. I would recommend calling or emailing them if you need any clarification on their conditions.

By Land: Map out bathroom breaks

If you’re driving to your destination, it’s important to map out and schedule stops for bathroom breaks. To avoid your pet from getting restless, use the bathroom breaks to let them run around.

By Land: Test proof the experience

Before you commit to a long voyage with your beloved pet you should get a good understanding of what you’re in for. Take them for a 2-hour drive to see if they develop motion sickness or severe anxiety. This will help you take precautions, if needed. It will also familiarize them to the conditions and allow them to get comfortable with it. You can take this a bit further by rewarding them each time they get in the car to create a positive association with it.

By Land: Crate for safety

Even though the idea of locking up your pet sounds terrible, when you’re traveling it’s a matter of safety. Pets freely roaming around a vehicle while you are driving can be distracting and extremely dangerous. Studies have shown that crating pets can also reduce their anxiety during long distance journeys.

Puppy Pads, puppy pads and more puppy pads!

Even if you have an adult, house-trained pet, travelling can often make them disorientated, which can result in little accidents. So make sure you have some puppy pads handy wherever you are.

Tag them!

Handling pets in unfamiliar surroundings can be very scary for you and your pet. In case of an emergency it’s very important to have a sturdy collar & tag with your contact details. If you are travelling your usual contact details may not apply, so remember to update the tags accordingly.

Stock up on necessities.

When you’re on vacation the last thing you need to worry about is refilling your pet’s medication prescription, finding their preferred food – or worse, introducing new food that they negatively react to. To avoid this, pack enough food for your entire stay and then some. Don’t rely on purchasing food at your destination. Pack some toys and blankets from home to sooth them during your journey.

Get a vet check-up

Visit the veterinarian for a full check up prior to your vacation. If your pet is prone to motion sickness our anxiety, your vet will be able to prescribe something appropriate. Take advantage of your visit and ask any questions that come to mind.

Find pet friendly accommodation

There is often a misconception that hotels and motels will accommodate your pets, however this is not always the case. It’s important to double check with them prior to making any payments. Be clear on the size and requirements of your pet to ensure a positive experience for your beloved pet as well as yourself. If you have larger pets you may want to opt for a holiday home.

Through careful planning, preparation and these handy tips, you can have an amazing travel experience with your pets, regardless of your destination.

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The Galapagos Islands: A Honeymoon Destination

The Galapagos Islands draw thousands of visitors every year, including scientists, students, naturalists, photographers and more. The Galapagos Islands’ status as a must-see, “bucket list” sort of destination also draws in retirees and off-the beaten path travelers. While the Islands are often overlooked by the “in-between” crowd of people in their 20’s and 30’s, the Galapagos Islands actually make for an outstanding honeymoon destination. Why pick Galapagos for your honeymoon? Here are five reasons:

The Galapagos Islands are Romantic

That’s the number one qualification after all, isn’t it? A honeymoon is a romantic vacation, and the Galapagos Islands fit the bill. Moonlit cruises? Check. Exotic location? Check. Excellent facilities and service? Check and check. The dramatic sunsets, fearless wildlife and memorable landscapes combine with first-rate services to create the perfect atmosphere for romance.

The Archipelago has something for everyone.

He wants hiking, she wants a beach. He wants water sports, she wants shopping. Galapagos is about not having to sacrifice or compromise. There are great beaches and hikes on the islands, as well as snorkeling and other water sports. The towns on the islands have a surprising amount of quality souvenirs from all over Ecuador and South America. You can even decide between land-based and cruise ship tours. Why fight over a destination when Galapagos has it all?

The “Enchanted Islands” are a destination for the young and vibrant.

The Islands are on many people’s “bucketlist” of places to visit. Many retirees go because they finally have the time and money to do so. Unfortunately, by the time they get there, many seniors find that some of the hikes and islands are too challenging for them and they miss out. The Galapagos Islands are best enjoyed by those who are old enough to appreciate them and still young enough to hop from one lava rock to the next, perfect for young newlyweds!

The Islands are more affordable than you think.

Many young couples are not yet established and may avoid seemingly pricey destinations like the Galapagos Islands. Although the costs are undeniable – airfare to and from Ecuador and then to the islands, plus park fees and the cost of cruises or lodging – they are relatively low right now. The worldwide economic downturn has had one positive effect: fewer people are visiting Galapagos and the tour companies and hotels are willing to make deals they would not have considered before.

Ecuador has much more to offer than just the Islands.

A honeymoon to the Galapagos Islands carries the side benefit of a trip to Ecuador. Why not spend a few days relaxing in the natural spas of Papallacta surrounded by the Andes, or taking a romantic carriage ride in Quito’s charming colonial center? For such a small nation, Ecuador is home to a wonderfully diverse ecosystem with everything from snow-capped volcanoes to sandy beaches.

Trips to these and other Ecuador destinations are very easy to combine with a trip to Galapagos. So start using our free trip planning serviceand book your honeymoon today!

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5 Strategies To Deal With Holiday Stress

It’s starting already… there are Holiday decorations at the local stores!!! Fall is here and the change of seasons marks the beginning of a four month stretch of holidays and stress. Here are five solid tips on reducing your stress between Halloween and New Year’s.

1- Get Solid Sleep in Terms of Quantity & Quality

Your body needs proper sleep so that it can rejuvenate itself every night. Since a normal sleep cycle lasts about 90 minutes, keep your sleep in 90 minute intervals (6, 7.5 or 9 hours) so you can wake more refreshed every day.

Almost as important, give yourself a consistent bedtime. Your body has a natural rhythm. The more consistent you are at going to bed, the more rested you will be.

If falling asleep is an issue for you, there are other steps you can take to help. Beyond the obvious advice to avoid caffeine 4 to 6 hrs before bedtime, create a sleep routine for yourself, give yourself some quiet time 20-30 minutes before bed. What you focus on during that time is what you will unconsciously think of all night. Similarly, don’t eat a large, heavy meal before bed and keep your bedroom relatively cool and well ventilated. On the nutrition side, you might want to try to have a light snack with protein (a glass of milk, sliced turkey on a rice cake) or a cup of chamomile tea to induce sleep.

2- Always take the healthiest eating choice

Stay away from telling yourself, “I can’t have that sweet,” it creates scarcity. An easier way to handle all of the treats, desserts, and drinks is to always take the healthiest choice. Instead of the double layer chocolate cake, take the chocolate chip cookie. Watch out for too much caffeine and sugars.

Keep your sanity and don’t diet during the holidays. Make it your goal to stay the same weight! There are so many treats, desserts, parties, and temptations. Eat and drink in moderation. Incidentally, there is a connection between overeating and being tired, so make sure you do get enough sleep, it’ll help you be in the frame of mind to make better choices.

3- Find a way to exercise, no excuses

Not only will it help you burn those extra calories you are bound to take in, but the body is made to move so we can feel better. Look for a way to physically move every day. You can find a 4-minute workout on YouTube at It will boost your metabolism and help you feel better. Remember, where there is a will, there is a way. If you don’t make time for your body, your body will make you make time for it, in the way of colds, flu, and no energy.

4- Give yourself a Time-Out

Take a yoga class, learn to meditate, or put on that relaxing music for 5 minutes. When things get too crazy give yourself a time-out. There are many ways to do it. For some, taking a breather could mean taking a 15 minute walk around the block, giving yourself permission to sit and watch a specific TV show, or sneaking in 5-minutes of quiet time in your car in the parking lot. For others, it could mean making the commitment to “unplug” from all electronics for a night each week.

5- Plan ahead but stay flexible

Schedule your sleep, exercise, and time-outs for the next four months in your calendar right now, and make the commitment to stick to them. But, when things start to go crazy-busy, stay flexible in prioritizing the day. Don’t just let the scheduled de-stress time disappear. Immediately reschedule it. Stay proactive and flexible.

If you start feeling overwhelmed, “brain dump” everything that you need to do on a piece of paper and put a “label” on each line item. Decide if it’s “important and urgent”, “important but not urgent”, “urgent but not important” or “not urgent and not important”.

Classifying your to-dos, will help you decide what needs to be tackled or left on the schedule, and what can be pushed back or eliminated.

The whole period around the holidays can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be something you dread. Stress is best managed by being proactive. It’s often a response to overwhelm and a general sense of lack of control –too many things coming at you and too little time to complete them.

So choose to take back that control and manage the holiday stress by being proactive in your planning and setting yourself up with the coping skills you need to enjoy the holiday season.

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Top 5 Sailing Destinations in Europe

One of a fascinating destination for sailing holidays worldwide is Europe that offers a lifetime experience to you. Filled with numerous captivating countries sporting sandy beaches, secluded coves, ancient ruins, historical towns, luxurious resorts and deep blue waters, You can find thousands of inexpensive sailing destinations here to spend your summer vacations at peace.

Although Europe incorporates numerous countries at your service with numerous islands spreading across different seas, the sailing experience of each sea is different from the other. To enjoy a thorough sailing experience of the country, you will surely require planning many trips to this country as one trip cannot cover every noteworthy destination. Here are the top five most popular destinations that you must not miss during your sailing holidays in Europe –

The Ionian Islands in Greece

The most favored island hopping destination in Europe is the Greek islands. They always hold the top most position in the bucket list of almost every traveler. If you are heading on sailing holidays in Greece, you must not miss out to visit the striking Ionian Islands. Starting from the picturesque scenario of Corfu to captivating Lefkada, you will surely get to explore the unmatched scenario of traditional tavernas, rugged mountains, beautiful beaches and vibrant fishing boats.

The Azores in Portugal

Incorporating a cluster of numerous tiny islands in the Atlantic Ocean, the Azores is a volcanic island that highlights its dramatic landscapes and lush green vegetation. Horta is a perfect point to begin your travel with a boat. Situated in remote locations, these islands are completely unspoiled.

The Dalmatian Coast in Croatia

Croatia is yet another appealing travel destination for sailing in Europe that can capture great moments for you. Compared to the new Riviera or new Greece, this amazing European country offers a traditional approach to life with stunningly beautiful beaches. With more than 1185 islands along the crystalline coast of Adriatic, Croatia is the best to explore with the help of a boat. Start your tour from the renowned historic sites and end up at remote islands.

The Baltic islands of Germany

Bound by Europe mainland, Scandinavian Peninsula and Danish islands, the inland brackish sea of Germany offers some incredibly unique locations for you to explore. Starting from the Stralsund to sweeping wild landscapes of Hiddensee Island, you can also include the deserted beaches of a white sand present on Rugen Island. Moreover, if your budget allows you to extend your trip, you can also include the beautiful Danish islands and Stockholm archipelago for the fun-filled experience.

The Sporades in Greece

Another captivating Greek island, the Sporades comprises eleven beautiful islands ranging from Volos to Skiathos. It creates good chances for you to explore unspoiled blue-green waters, rich vegetation and a traditional approach towards life.

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How Support Groups Can Help You With Depression This Holiday Season

As the holidays approach, you may be feeling a wide array of emotions. The holidays are often marketed as a “happy,” “fun,” time. Of course, they can be, but there is also an increased risk of depression around the holidays.

Is depression an issue that you are dealing with this holiday season? Whether your depression comes from financial difficulties, too many tasks to be completed in too little time, or family complications, you do not have to suffer in silence any longer. It is important to know that there is help out there, even in the middle of the holiday season.

One of the best ways to seek assistance for depression during the holidays is through a support group. As more individuals come to terms with their problems, including depression, support groups continue to increase in popularity. What does this mean for you? What it means is that you should be able to find a local support group that operates in or around your immediate area. This is important for many looking to seek help, as it makes attending local meetings easy and convenient. In fact, did you know that there are also depression support groups that are web based as well?

As important as it is to know that you can seek help for depression during the holidays from a support group, you may be curious as to why you should do so. For starters, it is important to examine the closeness of most support groups. They are designed in a way so that members and instructors give uplifting support to each other. This support also often extends beyond scheduled meetings. This uplifting support and compassion is particularly important during the holidays, as the holidays are when you should feel loved and supported the most. If you do not have any close friends or family members who you can turn to, a support group is a nice, healthy alternative.

As previously stated, the holidays are often marketed as a happy time. That is why it is advised that you seek help for depression through the holidays. Through numerous techniques, you may find your depression significantly reduced or completely eliminated with the assistance of a support group.

Speaking of techniques, the techniques used will vary depending on the support group in question, but most are encouraged to talk about and discuss their issues with depression, such as causes or specific trigger factors. In addition to listening, other support group members should offer you encouragement, as well as tips on how to survive the holiday season.

The first step in dealing with your depression this holiday season is reaching out for help and support. Since support groups do vary, although they all have common goals, you may want to see what you have available. It is relatively easy to research and examine support groups online. There is a good chance that you will find a loving, kind, and compassionate group of individuals who have the same wants and needs as you; to have a happy and healthy holiday season.

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What Makes Hopkins Village Belize A Unique Vacation Destination?

There’s a lot that makes Hopkins Village special. Located on the beautiful Belizean coast, this charming fishing village is home to fascinating Garifuna culture, with stunning natural beauty, and adventures all around.

Although you’ll find every home comfort you need in Hopkins, this is a village that’s yet to be discovered by mass tourism. So make sure you visit soon to appreciate its uniquely authentic vibe.

Hopkins was recently named the friendliest village in Belize too, so you’ll be guaranteed a warm welcome!

Garifuna People In Hopkins Village

One of the standout aspects of Hopkins is its population, which is largely made up of Garifunas. These are descendants of Caribbean and West African people who were, depending on which source you believe, either shipwrecked or escaped from slavery.

Now mainly found in coastal Central American locations, as well as in the USA and Canada, it’s estimated there are around 500,000 Garifunas worldwide.

Unique Garifuna Culture

Hopkins Village is Belize’s number one cultural destination and it’s one of the best places to discover the Garifuna way of life.

Drumming is an extremely important part of Garifuna culture, helping to maintain links with the population’s African heritage. You will hear drumming everywhere you go in Hopkins, and it really is the heartbeat of the village.

Music, song, and dance are also prevalent in Garifuna culture, telling stories of the population’s heritage that visitors can understand without speaking the language.

You’ll find plenty of opportunities in Hopkins to enjoy and learn about culture, as well as discovering Garifuna food, which incorporates African influences into traditional Belizean dishes.

Hopkins Belize’s Caribbean Beaches

There are miles of beautiful Caribbean beaches in the Hopkins area, and they are considered among the best in Belize. It’s not called ‘the coast with the most’ for nothing!

The good news is that Belize’s beaches are all public, meaning you can find your perfect spot of fine, golden sand – perhaps under the shade of a palm – and enjoy a beach day for free. And, unlike busier Dangriga to the north and Placencia to the south, you may only have to share Hopkins beach with the local fishermen bringing in their day’s catch.

Marine and Jungle Adventures Near Hopkins

Close to Hopkins Village, you can discover a whole host of adventures that will impress wildlife lovers, adrenaline junkies, and dive fans alike.

A half-hour boat trip from Hopkins will take you out to the Mesoamerican barrier reef, which is the second-largest in the world and makes for an unforgettable diving or snorkeling trip.

You can also take a boat cruise on the nearby Monkey River, where you’ll likely spot howler monkeys, toucans, manatees, and maybe even crocodiles.

For adventure-seekers, there’s a wide range of options here. Ziplining is a popular activity, or you could try waterfall rappelling. To channel your inner explorer, there are ATV tours available that explore the region’s jungles.

All of this can be enjoyed in and around Hopkins Belize. So the question is, why wouldn’t you want to visit?

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How to Make Your Long Holiday More Fun With Great Wall Hikes

The Wall is much more than just an engineering triumph. It is, in fact, one of the direct links with China’s legendary emperors that lived in the past. For seeing the Wall, that is made of wood, tamped earth, stone, and brick; snaking over parched sides of the mountains, in north-eastern China, you can make the most of your holidays. If you are associated with specialists then these trek companies shall have your itinerary polished. This is because the tours have been researched carefully and well examined before the hiking guide teams launched them. Quality of services and cost are always maintained by reputable operators hence make the most of your holidays doing the following.

The fun activities

Many are way more satisfied with just a day trip. However, for those seeking to explore the Great wall hiking, can indulge in a lot of things. For instance, they can spend nights in boutique hotels, near the Wall and even be asleep inside a watchtower. There are toboggan rides and cable cars for children and cycling can also be done along sections. a helicopter ride is also offered to some tourists and if you are looking forward to something as adventurous as this then you can always be a participant. There are many, who make a combination of the hike with visits to the Qing tombs, Ming tombs, the village of the Ming era at Chuandixia and the Summer Palace of Qing at Chengde.

Escaping crowds

If you want to enjoy Great wall hiking all alone in the company of friends and family then there are trek agencies that do not make you hike through the busy sections. Since the Badaling section stays touristy all the year round, they make it certain that you embark upon an original, remote and wild journey. It shall also be safe segment besides being less visited. One gets the opportunity to be walking on the cultural heritage of the World, learn daily lives of locals, enjoy mystical sceneries, communication with farmers and try the local food that shall be homemade. The balance between safety and experience shall be maintained.

Professional teams for hikes

The teams that shall take you to the Wall are well paid, well trained and shall be carefully selected. Thus, you are bound to enjoy a genuine and friendly relationship with the guides. Some of them even supply unlimited water during the entire trek and thus you shall never have to fret over getting re-supplies. One will be able to make the most of the trip by being lost in the magnificence that the Wall has to offer. With the best of guides water, snacks to munch upon and delicious meals, this journey will carve a piece of your heart.

Travel time

To make the most of the hikes it is always advisable that one must make a trip during the spring or autumn time. This is because summers are too hot for trekking and winters, too cold. Temperatures dip to less than zero and the path is snow covered. It can get too challenging. Hence, invest your time and energy to make this hike, a hike of a lifetime.

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The Advantages of Hiring Local Wedding Photographers For Destination Wedding

You have planned your dream wedding at an exotic wedding destination and are really excited about it. But you are stuck at one major decision regarding what to do about the photographer – do you fly a destination wedding photographer to your wedding destination or do you hire a local wedding photographer there. There are pros and cons associated with both. Let us take a look at them in detail.

Which is advantageous – hiring local photographers or taking you personal photographer?

If you are planning a wedding at a faraway exotic destination, in most cases you will be depending on your wedding planner present there or the resort management where you will be having your wedding for these things. It might not be possible for you to visit the place in advance or to visit it more than once to check out how things are working out there.

Your local wedding/event planner might recommend local wedding photographers for your wedding but they might not be the best. In most cases these recommendations are more based on personal relations than on the output of the work. Though it might prove a friendly decision for your pocket but it might not definitely be the best. Wedding photographs will remain with you forever, so my personal opinion is to try for the best.

Flying in a destination wedding photographer with you seems to me the best option. You can meet the person in advance personally and decide whether you like his style or not. A chance which you will never get when you hire local photographers based on your event planner’s recommendations. Fly in your wedding photographer at least one day ahead of your wedding and let him stay at least two days after the event, so he gets ample time to shoot pre and post wedding snaps.

Flying in a wedding photographer definitely involves a lot of extra costs. Along with the photographer’s fees you will have to pay them to and fro air fare, hotel accommodation etc. Many people in order to reduce these costs arrange a cheaper accommodation for the photographer at the wedding destination. I personally do not think that is a very good idea. If you are taking the photographer with you, make sure he enjoys his stay; his content will show through his pictures.

How to find local destination wedding photographers?

But if you are going to hire local wedding photographers at the destination, make sure to interview at least three local photographers. Talk with them on phone; ask about their style, their tastes, their choices, plans about your wedding. Ask them to send you their portfolio online and also ask for referrals. If you event planner is recommending someone check up with your hotel what they think about the photographer. Does some homework before you decide whom to hire. After all you will be reliving your wedding through these photographs all your life so you definitely need to be sure about your decision.

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Halloween Traditions: Then and Now

Halloween (short for “All Hallows Eve”) isn’t a holiday that is celebrated in all cultures. It is celebrated mostly in western cultures such as Ireland, the US, Canada, Puerto Rico, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand.

Halloween is celebrated on the night of October 31st. People who rejoice in this holiday often do so with traditions like trick-or-treating, costume parties, bonfires, attending “haunted houses”, consuming candy, and carving jack-o-lanterns. These traditions were carried over from mostly Irish and Scottish immigrants.

One Halloween tradition that spans most urban legends, countries, and historical facts are the act of dressing-up in costume and masks. In the past, it was said that these masks were supposed to scare off evil spirits. However, modern day costumes vary from “scary” creatures to heroic figures depending on the person’s preference.

Children who dress in costume will often go “trick-or-treating” (an activity that dates back to 1911). Kids will go from door to door and beg for treats, reciting the phrase “trick or treat!” The homeowner will drop a Halloween treat (usually candy) in the children’s bag, and the children will move on to the next house.

Another Halloween tradition is to have a festival involving a bonfire. This tradition is from the Celtic culture which believed that the fire would attract insects, which would attract bats to the area. This was essential to their beliefs that the boundaries between the living and dead overlapped on the night of October 31st.

A more modern Halloween tradition is to celebrate the night at a costume party. Attendees would dress in various costumes and visit friends. These parties would consist of activities like costume contest, bobbing for apples (where people dip their head in a barrel filled with water and try to grasp a bobbing apple with only their teeth), watching scary movies, and reciting scary stories.

Carving jack-o-lanterns is another Halloween tradition. It consists of gutting a pumpkin and carving a ghoulish face on the front. Afterwards, it is illuminated with a candle (which is placed on the inside of the pumpkin) and set outside to entertain people who pass by.

Although this holiday is celebrated with happiness and glee, some cultures are offended by the demonic and scary creatures that are portrayed in Halloween festivities. The background of this holiday is shrouded in mystery and folklore, but in the end the final decision rests with you. Whether or not you choose to celebrate this holiday by celebrating those who have passed on, worshiping the harvest season (like in the Gaelic culture), or using it as an excuse to have a costume party with your friends depends solely your beliefs.

If you do choose to celebrate this festive holiday this year, try some of these traditions with your family and friends. You can pick out a fancy Halloween masquerade mask and ball gown or dress up like your favorite superhero. Remember, the main idea of modern day Halloween celebrations is to have fun with your loved ones and enjoy some tasty treats.

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Travel the World’s Best Destinations

The top places for travel around the world used to be fairly standard. In fact, most people couldn’t afford to travel much, if at all. If traveling was possible, it was usually done in a car or by train or bus. Now that air travel is so much less expensive, several destinations that one may not even think of are becoming more and more popular for travelers and vacationers all over the world. The following countries are some of the top places for travel in the past year, and some might surprise you!

South Africa

The beauty of South Africa is it’s authenticity. Not only do you have several modern cities to tour and fine cuisine to taste, but you also have the beauty of the natural wildlife, including animals you won’t see any other place in the world. There is a tremendous warmth from the local people and the culture is fascinating.


Travelers love Argentina for all sorts of reasons. The sub-tropical climate makes it a wonderful, beautiful place to get away, and the waterfalls are copious and breath taking. On the other hand, Argentina has beautiful snow packed mountains if you like to ski. Buenos Aires is one of the most beautiful cities in the world with amazing night life and a strong beating heart.


Visiting the Philippines is a favorite experience by many due to the friendliness of the local people and the beauty of the ocean. The local people are known to invite tourists into their homes and voluntarily give information about the culture. The beach is a very popular destination for surfers and those who love water sports.

Czech Republic

Known for it’s stunning architecture and delicious foods, the Czech Republic is located in the heart of Europe. Several people visit the country by itself, but it’s a favorite for those who want to visit several other European destinations. The country has over 2000 Chateaus, more than any other country in the world per square kilometre!


This may sound like a more common favorite destination, but many say that Tahiti is the most beautiful country in the world. The colors, the beaches, the serenity give it top rating and it’s one of the top ‘wished for’ places to visit in a lifetime.


If you’re visiting South Africa, you should definitely take the time to visit Zambia, a beautiful neighbor which is home to one of the seven wonders of the world, Victoria Falls. Filled with peaceful, friendly people, Zambia is a cultural experience many enjoy.


Vibrant and culturally overwhelming, India is one of the best places to go to experience fine culture, wonderful cuisine, and absolute beauty. The people of India are extremely friendly and inviting, and their architecture is amazing. Of course, one of the most amazing things to see is a beautiful live tiger in the wild. A proud, vivacious country, India is a traveler’s gem.


Indonesia is a popular place for tourist who visit New Zealand and Australia. It’s comprised of over 60,000 beautiful islands to surf, swim and relax.


Not many places are more beautiful than a country in the middle of the Mediterranean. With architecture older than the Egyptian pyramids, Malta is a beautiful destination which traveler’s never forget.


People don’t think of Croatia as a tourist destination but it’s becoming more and more popular. A small country with huge diversity, Croatia is like Europe and the Mediterranean combined. Great food, great wine, great people- it’s truly a beautiful place to visit.

Although some of the travel destinations above might not seem like typical places to visit for a vacation, each of them are precious places that travelers from all over the world cherish and love. Each should be enjoyed and experienced by anyone who wants to see the world.

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9 E-Commerce Tips for the Holiday Shopping Season

It hardly seems possible that we’re entering yet another holiday shopping season. Year after year, advertisers start campaigning to win over early-bird shoppers earlier and earlier. Christmas decorations emerge in retail stores before some families are even planning for Halloween. So in light of preparing well in advance, here are some tips to prepare your e-commerce site for the 2013 holiday shopping season.

Use Holiday Terms in Your Campaigns

You can capitalize on early-bird shoppers by using those keywords in some of your campaigns. Do your due diligence first to analyze the potential in your particular niche, but incorporating key phrases related to the holiday shopping season could tap into the early-shopper market. Terms such as “early holiday discounts,” “pre-holiday sale,” “Christmas shopping,” and similar terms combined with your niche keywords can be effective in the pre-season with early shoppers.

Promote Pre-Season Prices on Hot-Ticket Items

Some shoppers specifically seek out early deals on hot items. The Skylanders video game is popular among children and teens right now, for example, and parents may be looking to buy game systems and characters before the prices start creeping up in time for the busy shopping season. If you’re offering a hot seller at discounted prices, let shoppers know.

Analyze Last Year’s Performance

Now’s the time when you should be carefully analyzing last year’s performance. What marketing tactics did you use, and how well did they perform? Should you allocate more of your budget to PPC or organic SEO this year? If you’re using content marketing, start planning your efforts and getting the ball rolling.

Get your plans in place now. If you need to hire a copywriter to spice up your product descriptions or run a branding campaign, you have the time to do so. But if you wait until holiday shopping season is in full swing, you’ll be chasing your tail.

Ramp Up Your Product Descriptions

Your product descriptions are what will sell your inventory at the end of the day. You can get visitors to your site by optimizing and using PPC – but your product descriptions are what will drive conversions. Take a close look at your product copy and revitalize it. Run some A/B tests to drill down to the most effective headlines and descriptions. You can also start planning how you’ll incorporate holiday-relevant copy in your descriptions, such as “must-have 2013 Christmas item for teens,” or “on the 2013 holiday hot list.”

Take Advantage of Google+

Google is really pushing Google+, so you should be using it to your advantage. Make sure your physical location information is up to date, and make sure you’re sharing your compelling content there. There’s a definite SEO benefit to Google+, not to mention you can drive additional traffic through your connections.

Fine-Tune Your Local Business Presence

If you also have a brick-and-mortar location, make sure your local business presence is solid. Local customers will find you online this holiday season. Update your hours, contact information, physical address, and description. Make sure your description is relevant and keyword-rich, including the main products you sell. Give directions if your location is tough to find.

Use Retargeting

Now is the perfect time to start using retargeting. Because shoppers are browsing the web for ideas, they may spend some time on your site and then leave without making a purchase. After all, they have plenty of time to place orders before the holidays.

But you can make sure you stay top-of-mind in consumers’ minds – and give them an incentive to buy – by using retargeting. Hit up visitors with special offers and deep discounts on items that are sure to be best-sellers, and offer some motivation by letting them know the items they looked at are in low supply at the current prices.

Be a Resource

Everyone has at least one difficult-to-buy-for person on their holiday gift-giving list, and shoppers are always looking for great gift ideas. Be a resource to your visitors by offering tips on finding the best deals, what’s hot on this year’s wish lists for different recipients, ages, and so on, and other fun and informative information. The more valuable content you provide, the better your organic rankings and the more likely visitors are to share your content.

Pay Attention to Mobile

More people are shopping via mobile devices than ever, so it’s critically important to ensure your site is mobile-optimized. This is particularly difficult with e-commerce, as the many product listings and the check-out process are often difficult to make mobile-friendly. But if you neglect the mobile audience, you’re going to lose valuable conversions. Your PPC ads are going to show up for mobile users, too, but they’ll bounce quickly when they realize how difficult it’s going to be to complete the checkout process from a smartphone.

It’s not too early to start thinking about the holiday shopping season. Retail stores already have holiday inventory on the shelves, and shoppers are going to be scouring the web for ideas and deals soon. Tap into the opportunity by heading into this year’s holiday season armed with your best marketing efforts.

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Top 3 Stag Weekend Destination in 2013

Come weekend time, and people start thinking of going to unknown destinations to renew themselves. They look for stag weekend unexplored places, where they can not only get some fun, but also learn something new. People take the advantage of corporate boat hire, as well as an activity trip at stag do Portsmouth.

When people plan for a stag weekend getaways, they have to think of many considerations like accommodation, language, health and transport. There are many good weekend destinations in U.K where people can get to explore themselves. They can plan on their own beforehand, or rest their worries on a travel service firm. It is very important to plan weekend destination in advance, so that children and life partner can also take a break from the routine and enjoy as well.

People choose from among the top weekend destinations, they have shortlisted. Here are some of top weekend destinations of 2013.

1. Bristol

Bristol is a stag weekend destination for those who like to have their short holiday completed in a fun and adventurous way. Bristol is famous for its nightlife and motor friendly roads. It is accessible by major transport networks, which makes it promising. Bristol activities can also include quad biking, the famous West Country games and its clubs. People can also take the advantage of playing in casinos while dining at the restaurants. Bristol though not that much popular for casinos as those in Texas, offers a good deal on casinos in terms of cost efficient and entertaining casino deals.

2. North Wales.

North Wales is a stag destination to be chosen by people who are interested in clubbing. There are lots of clubs with various amenities and entertainment at night time. North Wales is also famous for adventure sports activities like White water rafting, clay pigeon shooting, canoeing and surfing. Accommodation is also available easily without any issues. Wales has good number of beaches to sit with family and enjoy. Corporate boat hire can also considered by people who like to sail and see the sea wild life. Accommodation in North Wales, if booked in advance does not cost much compared to last minute booking and travel plans.

3. Newcastle.

Newcastle is famous for the famous MTV Show and is known as the Party capital. People who love night life during weekends and wish to spend their time losing themselves up should visit Newcastle for sure. This place is home to many bars and clubs along with activity sports like quad biking, swimming, football, hiking and more. The bars and clubs in Newcastle are known for many night life activities for party lovers, who like to hang on till early morning sunrays.

Portsmouth can also be considered by people, who want to explore some new activity and take advantage of stag do Portsmouth benefits. People experienced in sailing in yacht charters can also suggest corporate boat hire benefits to their friends for the weekend trips.

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Advice in Cleaning Up Eggnog Stains on the Carpet

During the holidays, eating and drinking holiday foods is surely something that everybody enjoys. It is always fun to eat and drink the foods which are only made during the holidays and eggnog is certainly a very good example. Eggnog is always a favorite among holiday parties at home or at work. It is really tasty but it can be pretty messy too if you accidentally spill some of it on your carpet.

Eggnog spills can be very troublesome as it can cause an ugly spot that will ruin the way that your carpet looks. If you want to restore the beauty of your carpet, knowing the correct steps is very important. If you want to find out how you can get rid of the eggnog stains on your carpet at home, be sure to read the helpful post below.

• Extracting the spilled eggnog is step number one in this guide. You need to act fast and quickly remove the spill so that it will not spread to a wider area on your carpeting. You can use a clean sponge or a white cloth for this purpose.

• The next step is diluting the eggnog stain that is left behind on your carpet. If you add a few drops of water on the stained portion of the carpet, you can make things a lot easier for yourself. Do this and then blot the area a couple of times to have an easier time in removing the stain later on.

• After doing the previous step, the next thing that you should do is to create a cleaning agent for the eggnog stain on your carpet. A mixture of one part white vinegar and four parts warm water is a cheap and very simple cleaning solution that is effective in removing eggnog stains. Place the mixture in an empty bottle and then proceed to the next step.

• Pour a small amount of the vinegar-based cleaning solution onto the affected area of the carpet. Use a clean white cloth to blot the eggnog stain repeatedly until all of it is gone. You could run into stains which are very stubborn so staying patient is always key. Soon enough all of the stain will be gone and your carpet will be just like new.

Cleaning up eggnog stains on the carpet is not that hard as long as you know how to go about it the right way. Follow the advice above and you’ll surely have your carpet looking clean and spotless in no time.

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Women Travel Solo: How to Find Your Next Destination

A lot of women travel solo or alone nowadays. One of the dilemmas that they may face is looking for the next destination to travel to. For those who love to travel, the process of looking for the next travel stop could be the one that takes the most time. It may take some time when deciding where to go to next, especially when it seems like the people have been to almost everywhere. There are actually a lot of destinations to go to, both local spots and international ones.

There are a few things to consider when looking for a place to go to when traveling. When women travel solo, you might find it important to look for a place that is women-friendly. You don’t need to, cause I know a lot of women that go anywhere, but they are the more experienced ones. You better not start there. There are places that may not be so open to women traveling by themselves so it would be best to do some background research at first. It pays to have detailed information about the different places that a women may want to go to so that the choices will be narrowed down. It may help to have a list of destinations that would the traveler would like to go to.

Other things that women travel solo should consider would be the budget. There are people who may only have a limited budget, so international destinations could be out of the question already. This would confine the traveler to local destinations (or nearer international places). There is no need to worry as there are bound to be great destinations in every country. Another thing to consider is the length of the stay. There are destinations that may be more conducive only for a couple of days while there are also destinations that require a traveler to stay for a longer period. Women travel solo should do their research work beforehand.

There are those who may want to browse through travel magazines or websites to check what places would strike their fancy. They usually have great suggestions for next destinations and they could even give the travelers an idea as to how much would the whole trip cost. This could then help the travelers to check their funds. They will be able to prepare for the trip when they know more or less how much will they be spending for the entire trip. It is better to be prepared and have a basis as to how much will be spent rather than go to a place and have no money at all.

There’s also the question what culture you would like to see? Read about it and see if it really interests you.

To summarize everything, when women travel alone, here are the things to consider: the budget, the destination, culture and the time. There are destinations that would be great to go to on certain times of the year, especially in time for festivals. It helps to do some research first because it would help a traveler to prepare and to check if the trip would be worth it. Choosing the next destination requires preparation so that everything will be smooth sailing. Itineraries could also be prepared so that everything is set and nothing is missed out.

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Schlemmertopf Clay Pot Recipes – Fun Cooking for a Healthy Holiday Diet

We all desire to eat healthy so we try to get a good diet every day. But it’s hard to do that on the Christmas season where food is abundant. One of the modern ways to maintain a good eating lifestyle even on the holidays is preparing food in clay pots – and Schlemmertop can be your partner.

The original glazed Schlemmertop is a type of clay cookware with a lightly-glazed bottom to offer more advantages to cooking in clay. If washing cookware is a daunting process for you, you will find glazed clay pot easier to clean as food particles, flavors, spices, and odors are not absorbed into the pot. While this clay is glazed, it offers the same healthy meals, without added fats and oils, that unglazed clay cookware can give. With it, your food is also cooked in their natural juices, with all liquids, flavor, taste, nutrients and vitamins retained.

Try this savory Schlemmertopf clay recipe with the essence of fresh herbs.

Stuffed Flank Steak


  • 1 flank steak
  • Some flour
  • 4 cups bread cubes
  • 3/4 cup of fresh celery, chopped
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sage
  • Salt and pepper


Always begin with the basic requirement when using clay pots. Soak lid of Glazed Schlemmertopf clay pot. Position flank steak crosswise then dust with salt and pepper; dredge with the flour and pound well with a potato masher. In a small bowl, bring together bread cubes, onions, celery and sage. Dampen with a little amount of water then season with salt and pepper. Spread stuffing over the flank steak. When done, roll the meat and tie or fasten the edge with toothpicks. Put in your Schlemmertopf clay pot and cover. Place into the cold oven and turn temperature to 425 degrees F. Bake for 115-120 minutes. By then, you’ll get a lovely crust and juicy steak.

Cooking Schlemmertopf clay recipes is a fun way to savor your favorite foods even on the long holidays. For an added advantage, the glazed pot is easy to clean without bacteria build up; no worry about mold and no staining or problems with food sticking. You may even serve your dish directly from the pot to your holiday dinner table. Note that if it stays covered, your food will remain hot for a long time. This makes cooking in clay not just an ideal way to cook low-fat diets but a traditional trick to enjoy warm food from the beginning to the end of your meals.

So this Christmas, enjoy Schlemmertop clay pot recipes for a healthy holiday diet!

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Why Jamaica is a Top Tourist Destination

Jamaica has always been a very popular destination for romantic travel including honeymoons and getaways for couples of all ages looking for a place to sight see and relax. In recent years, Jamaica has been growing in popularity with families and young people looking for a vacation spot that offers a little bit of everything for all to enjoy.

Few people planning their vacation realize Jamaica is one of the largest islands in the Caribbean. It stretches 145 miles from east to west with a range of mountains running almost entirely the length of the island and rising to over 7,400 ft. in the east, at their highest point.

But why has Jamaica remained such a popular destination and why does it continue to attract tourists in increasing numbers? Jamaica has morphed into a tourist-motivated destination, offering many excellent hotels, inns and guests houses. There are several airports, highways and ports from which travelers can gain full access to all of Jamaica’s points of interest. Jamaica offers several all-inclusive resorts, such as Sandals and Couples chains. The most popular destinations in Jamaica, where Sandals and Couples have resorts, are Port Antonio and Ocio Rios in the east and Montego Bay and Negril in the west. These resorts manage to capture the natural beauty and wonder of the island while at the same time being some of the most luxurious accommodations on the island.

The independent hotels are equally spectacular, from old colonial classics, modern hideaways and grand villas. The local residents with their vibrant culture add even more flavor to the already rich experience that is Jamaica. The more the vacationing sector develops, the more Jamaica is becoming an economy built on tourism. And that means that the Jamaican people want tourists to come and enjoy themselves. Jamaica is also the largest English-speaking country in the Caribbean.

American Express Travel [] says the island’s laid-back pace of life adds to the feeling of relaxation, which is key for most vacationers. Jamaica is also designated as the most beautiful island in the Caribbean, offering eye candy for all those who visit. The island’s beaches full of secluded coves that many vacationers find very interesting to explore.

The vegetation is a mixture of luxuriant tropical forest and lush coffee plantations, offering visitors a chance to see the production of one of the most universally consumed beverages in the world. Jamaica is lush with every aspect of a tropical paradise, including the weather. Jamaica has over 300 days of sunshine throughout the year, even during the wet seasons. Daytime temperatures are fairly constant year-round and lower in mountain areas. Heat and humidity can be felt during all times of the year and the warmest months are from July to October, especially on the coast. The region is prone to hurricanes from July to October. Although a direct hit on Jamaica is rare, if you are unfortunate enough to be there when a hurricane passes within a few hundred miles, there can be a lot of rain.

Jamaica vacations are moderately priced. You can find price extremes in both directions when it comes to travel and accommodations, although most airfare will run pretty high. Prices are usually higher in tourist areas like Negril and Ocho Rios. Shops in “tourist traps” usually have higher prices than native shops and you’ll usually see the same items at both locations. There are accommodations and restaurants that are cheap, but you’ll get what you pay for. The luxury resorts are a very good value because the rates are reasonable for the high-end accommodations you receive.

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Toetripping or Tiptoeing Through the Toe of Indiana

My friend moved from Terre Haute to New Harmony. “Good move,” I thought partly because I have always loved New Harmony, the site of an early experiment in communal living in the United States and partly because she found a good deal on an old drive-in restaurant which she converted into an art studio and living space. I decided to spend a couple of days visiting her and other friends in the toe of the state. It was only a four-hour drive from Indianapolis but seemed like a trip back through several decades of time.

We had dinner at the New Harmony Inn, beer from a local brewery, cheeseburgers and fries and checked out the Hoosier Salon artists in a main-street gallery. If the inn and its menu seemed time capsuled, we stepped back a few more years when we headed for the big event in town that night, a Hank Williams concert. In reality, it was a concert by the group HankeringforHank, a Hank impersonator who asked if anyone had heard Tony Bennett sing, “Your Cheating Heart” on the radio lately. A couple of jokes about the red G-string on the bass and going to the topless church down the street, seemed right on key, and everyone joined in for some heartfelt gospel singing at the end. We left longing for the “good ole days” before television and rap… but the Rappites might have disagreed. Like, “we dig socialism, but don’t you know man, we can’t agree on nothin’ so let’s just jam.”

New Harmony was founded in 1814 by the German religious group known as the Harmonists or the Rappites. When the Harmonists decided to move back to Pennsylvania, it was sold to Robert Owen, the Welsh utopian thinker and social reformer and William McClure. Owen recruited members to the community, but a number of factors led to an early breakup of the commutarian experience. It is easy to understand both his idealistic approach and the reason for its demise. As he himself admitted, “… It appeared that it was nature’s own inherent law of diversity that had conquered us… our ‘united interests’ were directly at war with the individualities of persons and circumstances and the instinct of self-preservation… and it was evident that just in proportion to the contact of persons or interests, so are concessions and compromises indispensable.” (Periodical Letter II 1856)

The community then became a scientific (entomology and geology) and religious center which it has remained to this day. It has a little over nine hundred residents and many of the old Harmonist buildings still stand and have been restored. Paul Tillich, the renowned theologian and religious theorist, is buried across from the roofless church, open to God and the universe. His words, “Man and nature belong together in their created glory – in their tragedy and in their salvation” still ring true today. The maze remains to encourage contemplation, and gardens, and art galleries enhance the town’s beauty. The search for knowledge is well served by The Working Men’s Institute, established in 1838, by William Maclure. It is the oldest continuously operating library in the state of Indiana and also houses a small museum.

I wanted to experience time travel on this trip and also try to “Keep on the Sunny Side”. Hank may have enjoyed this song sung by his contemporary musicians, the Carter Family. I must admit that even this experience had a downside as my friend had a raging tooth ache, and it was about 98 degrees on the “sunny side” of the street. We enjoyed our visit anyway, and after admiring all of her beautiful paintings, I set out enthusiastically the next morning to see the rest of the toe.

As I headed out of town I was soon humming Joni Mitchell’s Chelsea Morning as the sun was coming down like butterscotch in southern Indiana in summer, and the humidity added to the sticky metaphor. As I sped through the green countryside, a beautiful yellow swallowtail butterfly flew in front of my car. Unfortunately it hit my windshield and lay flapping in the road behind me. Everything else seemed cheery. My friend seemed centered and settled in her new studio, and I was headed toward Santa Claus, Indiana to celebrate Christmas in July. I planned to visit my daughter’s mother-in-law. This lady had been a successful business woman who decided to buy several acres of wooded land outside Santa Claus and live there with her three sons and their families.

She was no doubt familiar with New Harmony, but maybe not its demise. The sons did not agree with their mother or the wives with their husbands and moved away. After all, if the Rappites and the Owens couldn’t do it, how could they. I headed down highway 165 not knowing for sure where her farm was located and reluctant to ask my daughter who preferred separation of her relatives and wisely so. Blue cornflowers, purple cow weed, and white Queen Ann’s lace adorned the sides of the highways. Violet thistle and yellow goldenrod fringed the edges of the green quilted fields. I was mesmerized by the passing landscape and unable to slow my momentum through the honeyed morning even to stop for blackberries, corn, squash and melons advertised on a handmade sign.

My mood was broken by a more ominous sign that read, “Prepare to Stop.” A few miles down the road I saw the reason for the sign, a monstrous structure towering above the park, it’s top lost in the stratosphere. I was approaching Holiday World, and this was the world’s longest water coaster. I knew because my seven-year-old grandson had recently informed me with the greatest authority that he had been on it. I was horrified and asked how this could have occurred. Apparently, the last time he had been to the doctor to be measured he was forty-eight inches tall. Upon hearing this much-anticipated fact, he whipped out an advertising brochure and informed the doctor that he was now tall enough to ride the water slide at Holiday World.

I stopped at a filling station for a soft drink or a pop as they are called here. It is not my drink of choice, but somehow looked irresistible when imbibed by a jolly rosy-cheeked Santa Claus. I tried to figure out how to get to my daughter’s mother-in-law’s farm using the map. I didn’t really believe that I could find it, and eventually had to give up and call my daughter. After several tries on my cell phone which was rapidly losing power, I heard her voice demanding, “Do you have an emergency or something?” Well it seemed so to me as I was starving, my phone was dying and I was driving around in 98 degree heat in another era, so I screamed, “Yes!”. She told me she couldn’t remember how to get to the property, but she did remember a county road and some Wapati elk and buffalo across the street. This seemed like valuable information to me in my pathetic state and recalling another 60’s classic by Janis Joplin, I decided to “try just a little bit harder.”

Her directions proved helpful, and I was soon seated in an air-conditioned house with a glass of lemonade, hearing a tearful Donna describe how her beloved dog had died of the heat on the way to the vet the day before. I was deciding if the lemonade and air-conditioning balanced out this new tragedy when I was hit with another one. My grandson had fallen in the pond while fishing from the dock during his last visit and had been covered with pond slime. The next topic of conversation was about the coyotes on her property who frequently send the female coyote out to attract the cute little male house dogs, and then the male coyotes pounce on the dogs. Wiley Coyote is alive and well in Santa Clause land. As I headed out of town a giant Santa Claus beamed at me from one side of the highway while a small madonna smiled benevolently from the other.

My next stop was Adyeville, once a thriving town which used its nearby creek to ship cattle out of the countryside and down to the Ohio River. It now consists of two houses and an old store which another friend of mine calls home. He was retired from teaching sociology, and we enjoy discussing politics and philosophy. He wasn’t home so I discussed politics and water quality in the area with his donkey, Third and patted his dog, Second. Third was concerned about the state of the environment but Second was only concerned about enjoying long walks in the countryside. I think my friend was First but I am not sure as Second or Third might have been first. Third often came into the store/house uninvited. Abbot and Costello of “who’s on first fame” were also contemporaries of Hank.

Then I travelled up the highway to French Lick, Indiana’s Historic Playground. On the way I say a sign that said, “Eat here! Get gas and worms too. Beer(deer) hunters welcome.” Wow, what a place! I was becoming elated again until I saw a dead deer on the roadside which brought me back to roadkill reality. A sign for tomatoes and one for web design juxtaposed the old German agri-culture and the modern American cyber-culture on the side of the country road. But entrepreneurship was alive and well! And corn was everywhere, in small gardens, in yards, in giant fields by the roadside and next to the roofless church in New Harmony where it was framed by the stone church windows like a goddess in a shrine. Iowa may produce the most corn in the country but Indiana has Orville Reddenbacher of popcorn fame and the motto, “There’s more than corn in Indiana.”

Patoka Lake, in the state park of the same name, where I had spent many happy hours camping with my family, came into view. I’m sure the original native American inhabitants of the land enjoyed this area as well. Its Indian name means “log on bottom.” Its surface area is 8,000 acres, it has many campgrounds and hosts many sports related activities. It is also home to many varieties of birds, fish, animals, and insects. I had once camped there during a year of the cicadas or seven-year locusts. The roar from the woods sounded like a massive factory working the night shift, but was just a huge choir of cicadas that had been waiting for seven years to sing

When I arrived in French Lick, the first thing I saw was the French Lick Hotel and new casino surrounded by a moat of water. This is the only way it could have existed in this mostly landlocked state, with only a small shoreline at the point of Lake Michigan at the north and the Ohio River at the south. The state has a split personality when it comes to casinos which, by law, must be on a river or lake if they really have to be here at all. They are the work of the devil, but so is Pluto water which has been in French Lick from the beginning. So here it was with its moat, surrounded by little white frame churches with disapproving faces. They would rather have used the water for holier purposes.

The Pluto Water factory sold the mineral water in bottles with a picture of the devil on it that supposedly cured all ills, except maybe gambling. Al Capone traveled here by train from Chicago in the 30’s and wealthy families came from Europe to take the water. The West Baden hotel right next door had the largest free spanning dome in the world for many years and was billed as the Carlsbad of America. Visitors from around the world still come to French Lick now that the West Baden Hotel has been restored and is part of the French Lick Resort Casino Complex, a giant undertaking, but worth it to keep this unusual town on the map. The gilded hotel roof gleamed in the afternoon sun like a veritable Pleasure Dome whose outside is the opposite of topless, but inside, who knows?

I took one last picture of a huge red sun sinking behind a corn field, and an old barn with a “Chew Mail Pouch Tobacco” sign. Then I headed north, still on the sunny side, having come to the end of my day of time traveling and toetripping but not nearly exhausting the interesting places and people to visit in the toe of Indiana.

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Are You A Nature-Lover Looking To Visit A Dream Destination?

With more than half of the area covered by jungles, Peru is the best place to visit for nature lovers. The Peruvian Amazon acts as the important attraction for tourists to select this place for their vacation. To visit the Peruvian Amazon, there are two main entries one in the Northern side called as Iquitos, while the other is located in the Southern side called as Puerto Maldonado. Nature lovers can get a soul-touching experience in this part of the world since it is blessed with lush forests, bright flowers and matured trees.

Once people reach Iquitos, they can get to the deep forests of the Amazon by traveling on cruise ships along the tributaries of the Amazon River. When bigger luxurious cruises are selected, people can explore the beauty of the rainforest, while enjoying the other facilities offered by companies organizing Peru Amazon Trips. There are also cruise ships meant for budget tourists. The route taken by different tour organizers differ; however, all of them include navigation through large lakes along the Amazon. If you are intending to enjoy the flora and fauna of the rainforests, day-trips along with an experienced guide would be ideal.

If you do not wish to stay in cruise ships just because cold weather will not be suitable for your health, you can select to stay in lodges located in Iquitos and Puerto Maldonado. However, luxury cruises will be offering you with all sorts of facilities to protect yourself from extreme cold. When enjoying their Peru Amazon Trips, tourists are generally advised not to miss the opportunity coming in their way to visit the two most extraordinary national parks located near Puerto Maldonado. The parks are named as Tambopata National Reserve and Manu National Park and they are blessed with wildlife wonders. This region also enjoys the credit of having the largest number of species in the world.

When you land at Puerto Maldonado, you can take a boat ride for enjoying the beauty of the jungle. If you are interested in exploring deep forests, there are forests with different levels of depth that are located just at a distance of about two to five hours travel from Puerto Maldonado. Nature lovers say that many parts of the forests in Amazon are still unexplored and it is also believed that some unidentified species are also living in these forests. To make your trip more enjoyable and memorable, all you have to do is to find the best tour organizer.

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Find The Best Hotel Deals For Your Next Vacation

The cost of your accommodation is often your single biggest expense when you want to take a vacation or a business trip. A great way to cut your costs is to find a deal on your hotel. Here are some tips to help you reduce your costs when you are planning your next vacation.

Travel During Off Season

When you are deciding your travel dates try not to go for the high season. There are many travellers who have the limitations of travelling during school vacations or holidays but if you can be a little flexible about your dates you can safe a lot of money. Sometimes a small change of dates from a weekend to during the week can make a substantial difference in the costs.

Use Membership Advantage

Many big chains of hotels offer free membership programs just like airlines offer frequent flyer programs which allow you to earn points which can be exchanged for free nights. Hotels also sometime give lower rates to the seniors, military people, students or members of programs like Triple A. So make sure you mention all your affiliations while booking to get the lowest rates possible.

Internet Specials

There are hotels which have special promotions only for online bookings. So search on the internet for deals that are saving you money. If you also want to make flight reservation sometimes a complete package cost less then individual booking.

Hidden Fees

When you are comparing your hotel cost be positive that the prices you are getting include everything. Some hotels charge small things separately make sure whatever you need is included in your price.

More Ways To Save

When travelling with family first confirm if the children are free to stay or eat. If you are travelling with a bunch of people ask for a group discount. If you are coming from the airport inquire if the hotel has a free shuttle service. Ask if there is a free breakfast that the hotel offers. Booking a room with a small kitchen can also help you save money as you don’t have to eat out every time.

Be Flexible

Last but not the least is being flexible. You should not only be flexible with the dates but also with your requirements. Things that you can do without should not be on your list like the facilities hotels have to offer if you can stay without don’t go for them. Booking a small room instead of a suite. Choosing a hotel in a less expensive area are all ways to cut down your costs.

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Reasons Why Maldives Is A Premium Honeymoon Destination

Maldives is one of the most beautiful places in the world. It’s a small tropical country composed of hundreds of heart captivating islands which is 250 miles away from the Southwest India. It brags about the famous heart-shaped island providing luxury, romance and relaxation for couple guests.

June is the most popular month for wedding ceremonies, followed by August, September and October. If you are one of the June brides and grooms who are still unsure if Maldives is the right place for your honeymoon, here are more good reasons why it is a perfect premium honeymoon destination for couples who want to experience the magic of a secluded tropical island.

Best Resorts With Numerous Options

Maldives offers numerous hotel options for guests. Honeymooners are guaranteed to have a luxurious stay featuring all-water accommodation, plenty of rooms designed for couples and adults, best spa with medical assistance, access to lagoons, deluxe swimming pool choices, beautiful corals, villas, conserved marine life, underwater restaurants and many more.

Plenty Of Activities To Do

Your stay in this premium honeymoon destination will become more enjoyable as there are plenty of things to do. Honeymooners can explore and try various activities such as taking photos of stunning sceneries, scuba diving, surfing, snorkeling, swimming at the turquoise lagoon and pools, get a relaxing massage at the spa, go fishing day or night, join water sports and get a closer encounter with whales. There can be no better idea than visiting the place to explore its hidden beauty.

Island Hopping

Island hopping is the best way to discover the highlights of Maldives’s islands. Honeymooners can choose to travel from one island to the other to check out lavish resorts, beautiful beaches and many other features that the island has to offer. Couples can also try exploring the forests, get involved with various water-based activities or simply walk and enjoy the fine white sands.

Good Customer Service

Maldives does not only offer wonderful scenery and experience. Further, this premium honeymoon destination has friendly and service oriented staff ready to assist the guests with their needs.

Delicious Foods

In addition to the country’s best resorts, beaches and interesting activities, Maldives atolls also take pride its Maldivian cuisine featuring the Sri Lanka, Indian, Oriental and Arabic tastes mixed together to come up with a unique and delicious cuisine.

Crystal Clear Water

The country is a paradise of crystal clear water rich with amazing sea creatures and reefs. The water is perfect for snorkeling and diving from its 2 to 12 feet water depth. There are over 1,000 coral islands and 2000 species of fish waiting to be discovered.

For couples who want to relax and enjoy each other after the hectic wedding, Maldives is the perfect choice. With its first-class hotels, excellent service, delicious cuisines and crystal clear water, you definitely can’t go wrong here.

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Useful Tips On Spending Cheap Summer Holidays

The holidays bring a lot of excitement because that’s the time when we all take some time off from the usual jobs and travel to other parts of the world in order spend a quality time with our family or friends. But underneath the excitement of spending the holidays lies the fear of expenses. Going on holidays is not cheap these days and if you want to go on the holidays, then you need to allocate a good budget into it. Today in this article, I am going to discuss 9 tips to find cheap summer holidays. I hope that you find these tips helpful. Here they are;

Roam Around In Order To Get The Best Deals: You have to visit the high street and online travel agents in order to get as many quotes as possible. This will give you an option to choose the best package for the holidays. It is important to thoroughly check all the quotes before deciding anything.

Take Part Is Auctions, Deals Or Clubs: There are some companies that run travel auctions as well. They run it through eBay or directly on their own websites. Moreover, they have many tricks in their bags to lure the customers, like ‘Buy one, get one free’ and many more. So, you can make use of these great offers in order to lower the price.

Plan Your Holiday In Advance: This is an important point, therefore you should plan your holidays weeks before in order to avoid any hassles. Advance planning will also help you get great deals and offers on the holiday package. Try to stay flexible while selecting the holiday destination.

Pros And Cons Of Early Booking: There are some benefits of early booking, like you can get the best hotel rooms at affordable rates, but sometimes, the early booking will result in missing out on your preferred date or destination. So, If you plan on booking all the things early, then take the help of a professional and experienced travel agency.

Be Aware Of Booking Seasons: It is important for you to know that the booking seasons are different from the holiday seasons, so if you want to go on the holidays in May or June, then you have to book for the villas or hotel rooms in December or January. The hotels and villas make a lot of sales in these two months because people start booking the rooms. If you haven’t booked the hotel rooms and other important things in advance, then you should book it now or else, you will have to pay a lot of money at the start of the holiday season.

Register For Newsletters: if you want to gain information about the cheap holidays, then you must register for the relevant newsletters. It is very important to register with those companies, which you find trustworthy. You don’t want to see clusters of mails in your inbox. The top companies will send you all the necessary information about the exciting and affordable holiday packages.

You Will Only Get Discounts If You Ask The Agent: There are some things that the seller won’t give until you ask and discounts are one of those things. There is no specific price on the holiday packages, so you have to ask the agent to reduce as much as he/she can to make it affordable for you. The seller always tells the price, keeping his/her profit margin. So, it is up to you that, how you will make him/her convince to go down on to your price.

Always Prefer Restaurants In Which The Localities Go: If you have succeeded in saving some money on the hotel rooms, then the next thing for you is to save money on food. Don’t check on the internet regarding the restaurants because it will display the expensive restaurants most of the times. Perhaps, go where all the localities go, as that would lead you to a restaurant that has good food at an affordable price.

Wait Till The Last Moment: If you have missed on the early bookings, then the best thing for you to do is wait. You have to wait till the last moment until you hear any cancellation news from another customer. This will give you an express entry to the cheap holiday package.

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Altura on Portugal’s Algarve Destination Guide

Altura is a purpose-built beach resort on the east coast of Portugal’s Algarve near to the Roman town of Tavira and the busy resort of Monte Gordo. The eastern side of the Algarve is less developed and unspoilt than the other parts, making it an ideal destination for families looking for a relaxing holiday in Portugal. The coastline of Altura falls within the 37 mile coastline of the Parque natural da Ria Formosa which is protected from over-development. This lagoon area is a haven for numerous species of birds that make it home, a place to shelter in the winter or as a migration stopover. Most of the accommodation in Altura, including hotels, villas, apartments and seafront properties, is within walking distance of the beautiful sandy beach.

The eastern coastline of the Algarve has some beautiful sandy beaches lapped by clear warm waters, with no less than five Blue Flag beaches between Tavira and Monte Gordo. Altura has a long, wide beach with clean sands, a beach bar and restaurant, various water sports on offer and ample parking facilities. The nearby Praia Verde and Manta Rota beaches stretch out for miles and are very popular for their beautiful clean sands and tranquillity.

Altura has some beautiful inland countryside which is great for the family to explore by foot, bicycle or car on their holiday packages to the resort. Make a trip to the countryside a day excursion and visit the traditional market town of Tavira with its Roman bridge, city walls, fine churches, elegant townhouses and mansions, excellent fish restaurants, fishing harbour and interesting indoor market. Tavira on either side of the River Gilao and is linked by two bridges. Take a trip to Faro with its cobbled streets and squares in the Old Town which are lined with restaurants and cafes and the 13th century Se Cathedral which offers great views over the town. Altura is ideally placed for the family to enjoy a daytrip to Seville as it is just an hour and a half drive from the Spanish border.

The resort is popular with golfing enthusiasts as it has some excellent golf courses all within a 15 minute drive. There are top quality courses, with pro shops, hire facilities and restaurants, designed by Sevy Ballesteros, Sir Henry Cotton, Jack Nicklaus and Rocky Roquemore all offer a variety of challenges. The courses offer some amazing views, with Castro Marim overlooking the River Guadiana and views across to Spain and Quinta da Ria set in a beautiful nature reserve.

The relaxed atmosphere in Altura means that evenings are spent enjoying a quiet meal at one of the resorts top quality restaurants or at the bars which provide some entertainment. However if you are looking for more lively evening entertainment on your late deals to Portugal you will need to take the 10 minute trip to Monte Gordo on the eastern coast of the Algarve. Monte Gordo offers more lively entertainment than Altura including a casino if you want to gamble the night away.

Altura enjoys a Mediterranean climate with gentle sea breezes that makes the temperature feel cooler than it is and helps to moderate the humidity. Temperatures average around 28C in the summer with 12 hours of sunshine a day. The sea here is the warmest in the Algarve reaching around 24C during the summer season.

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Weight Loss Diet Plan For the Holidays

Several individuals are interested in obtaining a weight loss diet plan for the holidays. Each year, people who are trying to lose weight or even maintain their current weight find themselves stumbling in their endeavors around the holidays. When the holidays do arrive, there are many different types of tempting foods that are appealing to both the eyes and taste buds offered.

While you may have a high level of dedication to your health, it is quite possible to give in to the season sensations when it comes to foods like casseroles, desserts, and more. Here, you will be introduced to a simple weight loss diet plan for the holidays.

If you have been invited to a holiday dinner, it is quite likely that you will run into an assortment of foods that are unhealthy, yet very attractive. You should learn to distinguish between the items that are appropriate, and those that are not appropriate. Now, if a turkey is available, you will be pleased to know that you can indulge a little in this food.

This is considered to be a lean meat on the most part. In addition to the turkey, if you see that a ham is available for consumption, it is safe to say that this is on the lean side and may suit the needs that you have as far as your diet is concerned.

The next thing that you should know when it comes to holiday gatherings is that there are two types of foods that are likely to be present that can stack on the pounds. These foods include the various side dishes that are offered, as well as those attractive, sweet-smelling desserts! Vegetables are likely to be appropriate just so long as they are boiled and contain little additional ingredients. Desserts that are considered to be “fat free” and “sugar free” are likely to be beneficial when it comes to your weight loss diet plan for the holidays.

The next thing that you must be considerate of when it comes to holiday foods is the proportions that you elect to consume. It is often tempting to get more than you can handle when it comes to dinners that are laid out in a buffet style. Remember, the old water trick when it comes to eating – slowly sip a glass of water while eating to reduce the amount that you eat overall. If you follow the tips listed here, you will find that your weight loss diet plan for the holidays is successful!

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The World Most Popular Wedding Destinations

Are you planning a destination wedding? Do you want to celebrate your big day with natural beauties? If yes, you are in the right place. In this article, we will cover some incredible locations. You can consider them to host your wedding day. You might need more precautions and better planning when the whole world is going through a pandemic. You can consider international travel insurance to get the best travel coverage for your big day. You can think of wedding travel insurance with covid cover to deal with an emergency. You would certainly like to feel safe while enjoying your big day with your close family members. Let’s cover the most popular wedding destinations. In the end, we will also discuss how to make your wedding safe during this ongoing pandemic.

Best Wedding Destinations


You might have observed that celebrities are moving to the Maldives to spend their vacations and stay safe during the pandemic. The Maldives is worth considering when it comes to a destination wedding. You will appreciate Maldives beautiful natural setting. You can consider the Kagi Maldives Spa Island for your wedding. It has everything to create some lifetime memories.

Pre-wedding pampering, spa, and excellent accommodation make it a preferred choice for many. The Maldives is the right wedding destination for culture-vultures, adrenalin-junkies, and beach lovers. You can explore the ancient city and enjoy your biking. There is something for all types of travelers. Also, the climate is good year-round.


Another popular wedding destination is Cyprus. You will love the culture, city, and food. It can be great if you want to invite guests of all age groups. Everyone will have something to explore. If you are looking for the best wedding venue, you can think of Anassa. The five-star retreat can entertain all your guests. The accommodation is well appreciating and second to none. As it is made from natural materials, you will have a serene feeling. You will find many wedding venues in Cyprus. You can consider Anassa, Amara, or Four Seasons. You can choose the one that fits your budget.


If you want to celebrate your wedding on sensational beaches, you can think of Thailand. It has everything to make your wedding memorable for all your guests. The foods are great and can satisfy all types of travelers. When it comes to wedding venues, you can consider Phuket. It has many luxurious and romantic hotels. With a flexible budget, you can choose Sri Panwa. It is appreciated for its wrap-around sea views, private pools, and stunning villas. You can also consider Trisara, Paresa, Amanpuri, and Keemala Hotel.


Many prefer Italy wedding. They love the spectacular wine and food. If food and wine are your priority, you can choose this destination for your wedding. In addition to the food and wine, you can explore spectacular scenery. For the venue, you can consider Villa Cimbrone, Villa Eva, and Hotel Palazzo Murat.


Greece is known for its marvelous sea views and unparalleled beauty. You will love the black-sanded beaches and white-washed houses. You can book Grace Hotel Santorini and EI Viento Windmill Villa. Le Ciel is worth considering as well.

How to Ensure the Peace of Mind

We plan a lot for our big day. We choose the best wedding destination and focus on food, entertainment, and many other things to create some sweet memories. Have you ever thought of international travel insurance? If not yet, you will have to plan now. You cannot ignore it when the world is going through a health crisis. Choose wedding travel insurance that covers covid. It is a must to feel safe and deal with an unpredictable situation. Here are two insurance plans for your help.

Wedding Travel Insurance

The insurance will cover your wedding attire, wedding photography, wedding band, and wedding gifts. On top of that, it will cover any accidental loss. Whenever you want, you can cancel the event.

These days many couples purchase international travel insurance that allows moving their plans in the pandemic world and can help them with more coverage benefits. It will cover medical conditions as well. It will also help to customize your travel insurance depending on your travel needs. There are different types of insurance policies to create a solution for different types of travelers. You can choose any of these insurance policies to cover your traveling and enjoy your big day without any worries.

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How to Save Money on Holiday

Going on holiday can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. There are plenty of ways for people to book and plan their holidays cheaply, but what about when you’re actually at your destination?

Things can easily get very expensive very fast, what with travel, activities, eating in restaurants and staying in hotels. But it doesn’t have to be so bad – there are many ways to reduce the impact on your wallet. Here are some various ideas, suitable for all kinds of holidaymakers.


Youth Hostels: Despite the name, many youth hostels have family rooms! If you imagine grotty, cramped and noisy accommodation, get those ideas out of your head. Youth hostels are definitely no-frills, but if you do your research ahead of time, you will find many clean, well-located and at very least with good sound proofing!

House-swapping: This system have been around for a while now and there are many sites set up to cater for those who would rather switch houses with other travellers than fork out for a hotel room. Make sure you choose who will swap with you based on good reviewers and trust your gut feeling.

Couchsurfing: Fantastic for the single traveller, not so much for families. Couchsurfing is a relatively new phenomenon. The idea is you get to know people through the website and they will offer you accommodation in their home. Usually it is free, although sometimes people exchange services or gifts in exchange for sleeping arrangements! It is also possible for couples to find accommodation, although it is more tricky.

Budget hotels: They are certainly not a romantic or special option, but if you plan to use your hotel room only for sleeping, then why pay extra? Big hotel chains often have locations in many countries across the world and offer very cheap rooms.

Haggle for hotel rooms: Try calling a hotel to ask about room availability. Then leave it a few weeks and call them again – if the room is still available, there is a strong possibility they will be willing to haggle. You can also do this by email if you hate talking on the phone.


Picnic: This is the easiest, but probably the most work. Just head into any cheap local shop and buy food you can prepare easily. It will definitely not be a gourmet meal, but it’s cheap and easy and you can eat outside enjoying some people watching. If you find little local delis, you can also make it a bit special. Imagine a brie and baguette picnic with a bottle of vin rouge in Paris, for example. Yum!

Research: If you do your research ahead of time, you can find out which restaurants and bars locals prefer and hopefully which have the lowest prices. Local knowledge is really important if you want to save money, because otherwise you are unlikely to find places unless you stumble right across them. In addition, I’ve always found that the best places are usually tucked away and you’d need someone to tell you they are there!

Go veggie: Vegetarian options may sound like a drag for some, but you have loads of choice these days. In addition, they are always cheaper than meat menus and sometimes even come in much more generous portions!

Shop at sundown: It depends on where you are, but many shops will sell food cheaper at the end of the day, particularly if it is on or past its sell-by date. Baked good also generally come down in price. Have a look and see.


Coupons: Have a look online before you go and see if there are coupons available to sights or attractions you want to visit. If so, make sure you use them! Also check out prices to see if there are age-related discounts or loyalty schemes.

Go free: In many cities, you will find free attractions everywhere. For instance, in London, most of the museums don’t charge. Particularly in Summer though, it’s easy to have an entire vacation without having to go the paying attractions.

Check your timing: particularly for events such as plays, show and concerts, timing is an issue. Ticket costs vary wildly. Matinees are usually a good bet and cost a fraction of the evening price. Otherwise, find out if standing or cheap tickets are sold on the night. This is the case with many theatres and opera houses, although if you get standing tickets be prepared for it to be hard on the knees! You can also try hanging around the location just before the show begins – you will often find people trying to offload their tickets due to an emergency or change of plan.

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Can You Reach the Destination If You Miss the Journey?

The Orphan Mater’s Son by Adam Johnson takes an amazing look at North Korea, its people and its leaders. While in the opening Johnson states that all people and situations are fictional he also says that the story is based on many interviews and extensive research. So while I am in a bit of quandary about the true intent and meaning of this book, I can tell you that it is interesting, provocative, and well worth the time required to read it. It is long with much detail, there are many names to keep track of, but above all the book comes from many perspectives including that of the narrator who also takes on a variety of personas. The three of these combine to force the reader to read, ponder, step away, and then return with a fresh outlook and open mind.

Johnson masterfully weaves his tale so that even when I felt lost, I also felt “found” as I wound through the intricacies of the story. If even a few facts about life in North Korea are true, it must be extremely difficult (worded very gently) to live under such oppression. The characters are believable and even the tough ones draw out some traces of sympathy. Their understanding of the outside world clarifies, at least in part, why and how they exist within the confines of their country. We take so much for granted in our nation that it is hard to imagine the struggles others face.

There are many tremendous statements in the book but one that really hit my mind is, “Is a destination worth reaching if you can’t recall the journey?” These words match the life of almost every character in the book as each seeks survival and a sense of safety for him/herself and for his/her children. In a regime where existing is a treacherous trial, I wonder if there is even time or energy to consider the journey when the destination is cloudy, murky, and confusing and requires every ounce of strength and focus to keep it clear and seemingly within reach. And it is most likely not within the each of the vast majority of people.

I believe that many people live within this “just get to the end” mindset, ignoring the intriguing and exciting events of the day while they long for the weekend or for vacation or for a new job or for retirement. They are so intently engaged in the possibilities of the future and the dreams and hopes it might possess that they forget to enjoy the moment. In the case of the characters in the book, I think that the mirage-like destination is what provides drive and determination. Glancing side to side might draw up too many horrors and dangers so eyes faced forward might be the best plan of action. But in the world in which most of us live, the side trips and side glances are often the most glorious. The characters and events along the path to our destination offer us the thrills and chills of adventure. This juxtaposition of life surroundings and experiences between the book’s characters and the reader is just one more mind-probing idea the author generates.

The Orphan Master’s Son is an excellent read. I have learned much and my brain has tingled and I have excitedly research to know and understand more. I recommend it to readers who are curious and ready to delve into mysterious waters. It is not for just anyone, though. It is painful in many places and a start-to-finish reading would be excruciating. Stepping away from time to time to regroup allows the reader to plunge on.

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The Smart Way to Go Winter RV Camping!

There’s more ways to enjoy the family RV than simply taking it on the road during the warmth of Summer Sun and Winter RV Camping holidays are a great option for those that like to explore cooler family time possibilities while on the go! The chief reason for the rise in popularity of winter RV camping is that the huge crowds that summer camping sites have on them, which can be hassle-some experience for many families that feel overwhelmed by large teeming numbers at a holiday spot to really enjoy the space a camping experience should ideally afford. For such families, the idea of a planning out a winter RV camping trip is the best way to go and the right camping gear fits in just fine with the rest of the plan.

The most fun-filled and winning winter RV camping gets a boost from choosing the right RV for the season as a smaller vehicle has the advantage of keeping the heat in and passengers warm as opposed to the gigantic 45′ counterparts. Once you have worked out the logistics of making your winter holiday a safe and successful one, its not too difficult to consider how hard it may be to maneuver on slippery cold roads when guiding a truck and trailer or the camper shell as opposed to driving along a big, lumbering motor-home! So, practicality, above all other features, is most essential in making your winter RV camping trip a smashing success, don’t forget!

Do find out about the specialized RVs that are more suited for braving colder climes as they have high-grade insulation to provide extra protection when traveling through extreme weather conditions that consist of chilling winds and toe-numbing night-travel. Packing weather-appropriate camping equipment will ensure your winter RV camping experience is a well-thought out and carefully planned one, giving you great holiday memories.

You may want to consider looking up camping grounds that afford you electrical hook-ups in the winter as not all campsites offer this facility off-season so for those with RVs that are need extra heating capacity to keep passengers safe and warm, you may want to buy a generator to juice-up the temp! A bit of market research is called for here, so you determine by cross-comparison of various models which is the most efficient and functions best in specific temperatures so you get the right one to meet your winter travel needs.

Besides the above, do pay close attention to the kind of winter RV clothing you take along: boots, clothing, sports gear and add-ons for snow-bound areas besides extra pairs of trekking shoes (if you’re planning on the hiking) are ideal extra gear you can take with you so you’re not short on stuff should some get wet!

Food is the last, but most important item on your winter RV camping trip checklist and do remember to store adequate supplies of long-lasting food products, just in case you are stranded in unexpected weather or travel conditions as it pays to be safe!

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Tourism in Greece – An Ideal Destination for Activity-Filled Holidays

The tourism industry of Greece has become one of the key elements of economic activity within the country. As a leading tourist destination of Europe, Greece attracts millions of visitors from all over the world every year. Its rich history and ancient culture becomes the major captivating feature for the tourists. Additionally, the beautiful islands, mind-blowing historical sites, lengthy coastline and sparkling beaches are also a backbone to the growth of tourism in Greece.

Greece tourism – a historical overview

Tracing its roots late in ancient times, tourism in Greece has undergone tremendous changes over the years. Prior to the rise of Roman dominance over Western Mediterranean, the Greeks of Magna Graeca exchanged their culture with the Roman Republic. However, with the annexation of Greece by Roman emperors, this cultural exchange gained momentum. The modern-day Greece tourism began to flourish between 1960 and 1970 when various construction projects on a large-scale were taking place.

What to do in Greece?

Apart from numerous historical sites, Greece also offers a vast array of activities to make your holidays full of adventures. Here are some of the most famous activities that you should not miss while holidaying in Greece –

  • Bird watching in the wetlands: Macedonia, a wetland in Northern Greece is a prime territory for bird-watching. You can discover over 300 migratory and resident species of birds at the Lake Kerkini, situated on the river of Strymonas. The best time to observe species like spoonbills, pelicans, ducks, herons, storks, bitterns, grebes and eagles at Kerkini is between April and July.
  • Sea Kayaking at Ithaca and Kefalonia: Having a coastline spread across 15,000 km, Greece houses a variety of water sports to make your holidays enjoyable. Sea Kayaking is one of them. While you are on a hoping tour at Ithaca and Kefalonia, you should not miss out to do sea kayaking in the cool ocean. While kayaking, you will witness breath-taking sceneries and impressive cliffs of limestone.
  • Sailing at Aegina: Sailing in the deep waters of Greece is yet another thrilling experience for you. It brings you directly in contact with the sun, wind and sea. Although it is a challenging sport, you can expect good rewards when you learn how to sail. The Aegina Island offers ideal location to learn sailing. Moreover, you can also enjoy adventurous sports like snorkelling and swimming.
  • Mountain adventures in Thessaly: Located below the rugged Mount Olympus, Thessaly region specialises in providing a fun-filled experience of adventure sports and outdoor activities to you. You can try out variety of sports such as mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing, sea kayaking and canoeing in this region.
  • Wind surfing at Paros: Paros is house to the New Golden beach that hosts the professional World Cup of Windsurfing Association. The exposition of stable meltemi winds all through the summers makes it an ideal place for surfing. However, if you are a learner, you can prefer a time when the wind is comparatively less strong.

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Top Tips for Selling a Home during Holidays

-Consider potential buyers spiritual backgrounds in your market before decorating for a holiday.

-Minimize holiday decorations to keep focus on your home and it’s features and benefits.

-Less is more when decorating a home for the holidays while you are trying to sell. Streamline the amount of holiday specific decorations you display.

-Christmas trees and other large holiday decorations consume space that might make rooms appear smaller.

-Install and remove exterior holiday decorations 2 weeks before and after holiday.

-Turn off lighted holiday decorations before showings, buyers should focus on your home and not your decorations.

-If you are having out-of-town house guests, ask your agent to postpone showings until after your guests depart.

-Leave out a plate of home-made holiday treats for potential buyers.

-Display summer photos of home and gardens to inform buyers of the features of the home in other seasons.

-Before showings remove snow, ice and leaves from walkways and driveways. Don’t overlook outside entrances to basements, garages, and porches.

-If you plan to close the purchase or sale of a home near a holiday, check with your agent, tilte company and lender to verify two business days before closing that they have all the required documents and funds have been wired to complete the transaction.

-If you are closing on your new home, select a mid-week day, early in the day, to schedule your closing time, to accommodate last minute delays by a mortgage loan processor, insurance or title company.

-If you plan to move during the holidays, keep in mind that moving companies will require more notice and could charge additional fees for packing, moving and delivering household goods on week-ends and holidays.

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Heaven or Hades? Visit a Great Greek Destination

Legend has it that the entrance to the Underworld lies in a remote corner of Greece. Well, I’ve been there and I can say it ain’t so.

Allegedly, Orpheus and Hercules entered a cave on the Peloponnese peninsula and descended into Hades.

However, my search brought me closer to a piece of Heaven rather than the gates of Hell. For an hour or so I trekked over a hillside of wild flowers and buzzing insects. All I discovered was a cove lapped by azure water and the mosaics of a Roman settlement.

I decided to leave Hell for another day. It was good enough just to be in the Mani, where ancient myth, wild feuds and daydreaming escapism all come together.

The Mani? Check the map of Greece. On the southern coast of the Peloponnese peninsula you will see three fingers of land jutting into the Mediterranean. The middle finger is this wild, rocky region of fortress houses, phantom villages and secluded inlets.

When you’ve done the most famous historic sites of the Peloponnese – Epidaurus, Mycenae, and the rest – it’s worth journeying south to experience another world sufficiently off the track to avoid succumbing to mass tourism.

One, delightful, way to reach the area is via Yithio, once the port for the Sparta city-state. Paris of Troy after abducting Helen allegedly spent his first night with her on an island in the bay.

Driving west, you find the lofty, fortified houses of Areopolis, one of the region’s bigger settlements. These tall stone towers, often with only slits for windows, are reminders that until a hundred or so years ago blood feuds were commonplace here.

Fierce confrontations between rival clans led to the construction of hundreds of these amazing structures, fitted with special platforms for hurling down boiling oil or water.

Only aristocrats were allowed to build towers. Whenever there was a serious conflict, they retreated inside. The women were allowed out to work the fields. At times an amnesty might be declared, so the women could bring in the harvest.

An army of 400 regular soldiers was needed to suppress the last big vendetta. The good news is that today boiling oil is out. And the towers are being converted into tourist accommodation.

Entrenched amid gorges and olive groves, the poverty-stricken Maniots long had a reputation for rebelliousness and piracy. Have no fear, however, for these days the locals are renowned for their hospitality.

Many visitors get no further than the spectacular Pyrghos Dhirou caves, located by the sea. Flat-bottomed boats take you over a subterranean lake past bizarre rock formations.

Only ghosts seems to inhabit many villages but Yerolimenas, bounded by a high cliff, has a harbour, a post office and accommodation. Sip an ouzo at one of the waterside cafes and think about lunch.

Dramatic mountain and seascapes open up as you head further south. Running along a ridge is one of the most spectacular of the fortress settlements, Vathia’s skyline of towers resemble a mini-Manhattan.

But tread the labyrinthine alleyways and all you will find is one café, and maybe a stray cat.

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Holiday Temptations? Get a Jump on January!

Most of us want to feel safe, maybe even more so at holiday time. If you have food addictions, though, it can be difficult to feel safe during the holiday season.

Everyone knows the holidays bring food temptations. It’s simply accepted that we’ll eat those foods, gain weight, and set the same weight-loss resolution we set last year and the year before.

Making this worse is how constant the temptations are – every day, all day, even more than usual. Seasonal stresses don’t help, either: long lines, crowds everywhere, parties, the financial pressure of holiday gifts, lots more.

These stresses can – and do – lead to emotional eating. And if we feel we’re about give in to emotional cues, the tempting foods are right there.

The Worst Holiday Stress?

Family pressures may be the worst. Who’s the “food pusher” in your family?

A client of mine had food battles with her mother all season long. Mom would make the holiday treats she knew her daughter loved. My client told her mother she didn’t want the treats because she was trying to lose weight. She told mom not to have them, either, because they were unhealthy.

Well, mom never changed her behavior and kept pushing the homemade treats. My client never developed better arguments. It took me a while to realize my client wanted to lose the battle. It was her “victim” excuse to eat the holiday foods.

What Can You Do Instead?

Let’s assume you want to win this holiday season. Here are suggestions to help you feel safer.

• Set your health goals right now – weight loss, health, better moods, more energy. Make December your Health Month.

• Refuse to eat junk that will sabotage those goals.

• Exercise every day. I use effective 10- to 12-minute high-intensity interval (HIIT) workouts that anyone can fit into a busy day.

• Don’t take food home from holiday parties, even if it’s offered repeatedly.

• If you can’t refuse the food, stop at the nearest trash can on the way home and toss it. DON’T take it home and pretend you won’t eat it.

• If you go to a potluck, bring a healthful dish – salad, roasted veggies, fresh fruit and nuts for dessert.

• Focus on family and friends. Make others feel safe for the holidays. Send prayers of healing and love to all you meet.

Yes, this will take discipline. BUT!

Temptations will tempt you less because you set solid goals. December will feel safe. And you’ll feel safe.

“Every day you push a little harder, eat a little better, maybe go to bed a little earlier.” – Jonathan Horton, gymnast

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Japan Travel Destination – Kamakura

Located to the southeast of Tokyo, Kamakura is on the itinerary of almost all tourists. Once upon a time it was the political capital of the country. Later its glory as a capital was lost to another city, but it remains a favorite tourist destination.

Kamakura has numerous attractions which bring tourists to this small city in great numbers, usually as a day-trip from Tokyo. Located in an open, picturesque location, is the second tallest bronze Buddha statue in Japan. It is 13.35 meters high and is second to the one in Nara’s Todaiji temple. The temple for the goddess of mercy, Kannon, sits in Hasendera. The 9.18 meters tall goddess has eleven heads representing its various characteristics. Adjacent to the temple is the Amida-do Hall, which houses a three-meter tall golden Buddha. From there you can visit the observation deck that offers a splendid view of the city, and back at the base of the slope lies a lovely garden with a temple – Benten-do – dedicated to the goddess of feminine beauty and wealth.

Kamkura’s most prized shrine is the Tsurugaoka. It is dedicated to Hachiman, the Samurai god. The main hall has a museum which displays swords, masks and documents – true treasures of the shrine. Out of the five Zen temples of Kamakura, Engakuji temple is most famous. The temple grounds include Shariden, a well designed hall where rests a tooth of Buddha. Engakunji lights up colorfully during autumn.

The beaches of Kamakura come alive with people in the summer months, while millions of people gather in the historic city to witness the New Year celebrations. In the spring, it is a custom for the Japanese to visit the Zeniarai Benten shrine to wash money. It is believed that by doing so the money doubles – worth a shot.

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Weight Loss and a Healthy Diet – Easy Tips For Keeping Off the Holiday Weight

Here are some easy to follow tips to help you enjoy your food and still keep off the weight:

o Set Goals

Set goals on how much weight you want to lose. Once you decide on how much weight you want to lose and still be healthy – (For instance you can decide to lose a to2 pounds every month) – follow some safe weight loss plans. Some important strategies for a safe and healthy weight loss are listed below

o Watch what you eat

As the saying goes ‘you are what you eat’. Eat whatever you enjoy but in moderation. Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables provide many essential vitamins and minerals that our body need. Higher intakes of fruits and vegetables are associated with healthier lives including lower risks of cancer and coronary heart disease. Follow the “5 a Day for Better Health”. A word of caution – some fruits contain a lot of sugars and may not be good for some people. Contact your dietician for the types that are suitable for safe weight loss.

o Eat slowly

Eating slowly helps you to enjoy, taste and smell your food. It improves your digestion as it gives your stomach more time to start working on the food. Helps you lose weight because it takes your stomach about 20 minutes to produce the hormones that tell your brain that you are full. If you slow down, you give yourself more time to feel full and this gives you a better chance of stopping before you ‘overeat’. I have started eating slowly and have found out that I eat less than I would normally do – so slow down, take smaller bites and enjoy your food.

o Drink a lot of filtered water

The usefulness of water to our health cannot be underestimated. It is one of the most essential elements to good health. Add some lemon and fresh peppermint to your drinking water as this makes you feel full – you are likely to eat just the right quantity of food when you feel full. If you exercise, then you need to drink a lot of water than you would usually do because a lot of water is lost during performance and this needs to be replaced.

o Dance to your favourite music

Dancing is a wonderful exercise, which not only releases and frees our bones, muscles and joints, but also raises spirits. High-energy dancing also gives your body a great workout. But do not overdo it – just going out dancing can cause physical injuries, particularly in the ankles, knees and hip joints, when pounding the floor repeatedly. You can choose from so many dance forms. Some examples are jazz, modern jive, tap and ballet, or how about belly or shamanic dancing or temple dancing? Choose the one that moves and satisfies you, and to which you feel instinctively drawn. When deciding which dance form is right for you, be realistic about your state of fitness, your age and your ability. Start at the beginning, learning steps and form gradually, as you build up stamina and confidence.

o Exercise

Research shows that regular exercise, combined with healthy eating is the most efficient and healthful way to control your weight. Regular physical activity can also reduce your risk for several diseases and conditions and improves your overall quality of life. In order for exercise to be helpful in weight loss, you should strive for a minimum of five 30 minute sessions per week. Recent research has shown that three 10 minute sessions in a day are as good as one 30 minute session. You need to find something you enjoy and you are more likely to stick to it.

o Mindset on being healthy

Above all have a mindset of being healthy and not to becoming thinner. Choose food types that will help your health and this will eventually help control your weight.

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Travel Destination Tips

Destination tips serve as a guide for a luxury vacation. Always remember the reason as to why you want to travel. Remember that travelling is always a good idea. It helps you see the world in a new and different perspective. You get a glimpse of their must try and to die for cuisines and the different tourist destinations.

Remember these travel destination tips when planning a trip.

Be open-minded. Try to learn about the place that you want to go to. With Internet access, it is very possible to get a grasp of what to expect from that place.

Be creative and consider underdogs: Try to pick locations that aren’t very familiar with tourists and be a little creative when visiting their tourist spots.

Be decisive: Don’t let peer pressure get to you. If your friends tell you that they’re going to visit the Eiffel tower and you’ve plan to visit the Maldives go for your first choice. Never regret so you don’t miss out on what you could experience in a certain place.

Ask yourself why: Remember to ask yourself the reason why you want to go there. Is it because you want to do some soul searching? Are you trying to reconnect with an old flame? Whatever maybe your purpose you always have to be definite because this will help you choose the perfect places to travel to.

Remember to remember: When travelling to a different place don’t forget to research about their culture and traditions. Furthermore, keep your valuables handy. Don’t let them out of your sight when travelling so better make sure that all of your must haves are in your travel pack.

Safe choices aren’t bad choices: If you want to travel but are having second thoughts about your safety and the location of your chosen place. Don’t worry and stop bugging yourself. If you feel like going to a different location is a perfect fit for you then try to choose the location where your heart is set in.

Go solo: You may wish to travel in groups but sometimes you must not be afraid to go alone. Going alone doesn’t mean you’re desperate or lonely. It will help you discover your abilities to be independent. You get to explore more places on your own without the hassle of worrying about your companions.

Don’t miss out on the backyard: Different places have different must try locations. They might offer pretty souvenirs or trinkets, their delicacies, and everything else in between. These little backyards will help you learn more about the place you are in.

Budget options: It doesn’t necessarily mean that when budget is tight you would not be able to enjoy different places and attractions. Try to choose the places where you spend less but enjoy a lot more. There are a lot of destinations right now that are not too expensive but have a wide array of travel and tour packages.

These travel destination tips are only guidelines for you to follow to have a stress free travel.

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Holidays in Australia – The Natural Marvel

A beautiful island continent, Australia is a breathtaking land of natural marvels, damp woodlands, rich grasslands, deserts and mountains, deep blue beaches and oceans. Australia is a country with a continental mainland in the southern hemisphere of Indian and Pacific Oceans, with a number of islands and Tasmania as its major island and a number of other islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans in the southern hemisphere.

Mentioned below are some of its main attractions which no visitor can afford to miss when on a vacation to Australia.


Sydney is a harbor city situated in the south-east shore of Australia and is one of the major tourist destinations in Australia. Tourist and visitors from across the world, on a holiday in Australia, make sure they visit this beautiful city. This city is the ideal way to enjoy your trip to Australia and has lot to offer, like world famous opera house, the harbor bridge, the Rocks, amazing buildings, fashion, art and rich cuisine. Since the city is situated on the right of the Pacific Ocean, it also has fun filled sunny beaches to offer for a great family vacation or relaxation time. The city is known to have tourists flowing in from different parts of the world for a memorable vacation.

Sydney Opera House

Designed by a Danish architecture, Jorn Utzon, this tourist attraction is amongst one of the wonders of the world and is home to art, dance, music and the theatre world. The place is a cultural and art paradise of Australia and is one of the world heritage sites. You must not miss this tourist attraction, for it has a magnificent structure worth capturing. The opera house has more than 1000 rooms to boast.

Great Barrier Reef

This is another major tourist attraction of Australia and must be visited when on a trip to Australia. If you wish to add a touch of adventure to your Australian holiday, the Reef offers you helicopter ride, snorkel, scuba dive, surfing and fishing in deep sea. Tourist and visitors can always take a helicopter ride to enjoy the immensity of the Great Barrier Reef.


Renowned for its architecture from Victorian time, Melbourne is a cultural city known for its beauty, galleries, gardens and museums. One of the major tourist destinations in Australia, Melbourne has everything for making your holiday a perfect one. From sports to delicacy of rich cuisine, this city has it all. One such amazing tourist attraction to be found in Melbourne is the Royal Botanic Gardens. Situated on the southern bank of river Yarra, in the heart of Melbourne, the Royal garden is spread in an area of 354,000sqm. You must not miss the breathtaking landscapes, refreshing flora and pictorial beauty of the city in this tourist attraction.

Colonial museum, Sydney

The Colonial museum is situated on the college street of Sydney and is a great way to enjoy your holiday in Australia with family. On a trip to Australia, you can always take your kids to this house of anthropology and natural history. The museum holds exciting exhibitions as well as has a collection of invertebrate and vertebrate zoology, Palaentology, anthropology and mineralogy.

Best time to visit Australia

The ideal time to visit Australia is in the months of September and October, which are neither too cold nor too hot.

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Honeymoon Vacations: Tips for Deciding on the Perfect Romantic Destination

One of the biggest decisions newlyweds have to make is where to go on their honeymoon, and how much money to spend on it. You should be able to enjoy your search. Don’t let it stress you out. Sure, there are many destinations and tons of hotels and resorts to choose from, you can easily narrow down your search. Here are some guidelines for choosing honeymoon vacations.

• As with any vacation, you should always begin with the budget. Have an idea of how much money you can afford to spend on your trip. For how many days will the trip be? Set a total budget as well as a daily budget. In addition to suite accommodation and airfare, consider the price for food, drinks, and entertainment as well.

• Consider your destination. Exotic beach vacations are very popular these days, in places like the Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexico, Maldives, Fiji, etc. However, there are still plenty of romantic cities in Europe to consider. You don’t even have to leave the US. Maybe you can do the Vegas thing or head to Hawaii. What about a bungalow rental in Key West? Or an exciting week in NYC? Make a list of the places you and your fiancé want to go and compare prices.

• If you have trouble settling on a specific destination, at least come up with a theme. Is the exotic beach thing for you? Or an exciting city getaway? What about adventure? Romantic mountain honeymoons are always a good idea.

• Honeymoon vacations don’t always have to be in one spot. You could always go on a cruise. Azamara Club, Princess, Norwegian, and Celebrity cruises all offer great honeymoon packages. Today’s cruise ships have spas, butlers, luxury suites, and more. You can opt to stay on the ocean for most of the time or choose an itinerary with exciting port cities.

• The season and weather might be something to think about. You don’t want to end up feeling uncomfortable in a hot, humid environment, OR an icy cold environment. Even if you do plan on spending most of your time indoors, extreme weather could cause disruptions in your travel plans. It might not be the best idea to go on a Caribbean cruise during hurricane season, for instance.

• Finally, make a list of all of the amenities the two of you want. What can you do without? What do you absolutely must have? When comparing honeymoon vacations, look for ones that offer all of the amenities you need.

Final Words

Online websites are the go-to resource for honeymooners everywhere. It’s the leading travel site in the world, and it’s where you will undoubtedly find the best deals on honeymoon vacations. You can research all of the destinations you’re interested in and compare rates and amenities.

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Halloween Safety Tips For Children’s Costumes

When we think of Halloween we mainly think of our children dressing up in their cute costumes and heading out the door to go trick-or-treating. We don’t always think about the dangers those costumes may have for our children. When purchasing or making costumes keep the following Halloween safety tips in mind. Accidents do happen but if certain precautions are taken we can reduce the chances of anything happening to our little ones.

Here is a list of some things to look out for.

1. If they are wearing masks, hats, or scarves make sure their vision isn’t obstructed in any way. Use bobby pins to keep hats and scarves from slipping down over their eyes. Make sure eye holes in masks are big enough so they see clearly in all directions: sides, front, at their feet (so they don’t trip over anything), and above their head (so they don’t walk into a low hanging branch).

2. Halloween make-up is a good alternative to a poor fitting mask. However, some people are allergic to the make-ups. Test in a small spot a week before using it. Make sure the make-up you buy is labeled non-toxic.

3. The costume needs to fit well. Make sure it’s not too long that they risk tripping on it. A too tight or too loose costume can affect their mobility. Try it on at least a few days ahead and preferably even earlier so you have time to adjust it. If you don’t sew you can use safety pins to shorten it or take it in. Even duct tape can be used to temporally shorten a costume. If the costume is just too small consider buying or making a larger one.

4. Make sure the child is visible in the dark. Reflective tape can be put on the back shoulders, waist, and even the back of their shoes. For the front of the costume you can put reflective stickers or flashing Halloween pins. Reflective tape can also be put on their trick-or-treat bags. Flashlights should always be used by older children going out by themselves.

5. Shoes should be worn for safety, not fashion on young children. Sturdy athletic shoes will help reduce falls as the children run up to the houses to ring the doorbell.

6. Accessories need to be age and size appropriate. If they are too large for the child it may cause him to trip or accidentally trip someone else. Make sure any swords, broom sticks, shields, guns, wands, or axes are made of soft rubber or flexible plastic materials.

7. If you are taking out young children don’t let their trick-or-treat bags get too heavy. It could cause them to trip. Carry extra bags to dump the candy out of their bags.

Pedestrian accidents go up on Halloween. These few Halloween safety tips could make the difference between happy trick-or-treaters or injured ones.

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Rome – Different Interests, One Destination!

Worried about having to leave teenagers at the family hotel in Rome while you enjoy the rest of the sights? You don’t have to! The Italian capital has something for everyone- from the oldest member of the clan right down to the youngest.

While it may sometimes seem like a very “grown-up” destination, with the ancient buildings, even older artefacts, sombre museums and creaky cathedrals, Rome has plenty to surprise. There’s so much to enjoy, from the minute you step out the door of your family hotel in Rome. Here are a few of the things each member of the family can look forward to on a Roman holiday.

For the History Buff

History is the one thing you can be quite sure of getting from the moment you arrive in the Italian capital – practically every square foot is dripping with history. Of course, no history buff worth his or her title will want to miss seeing the Coliseum, the Roman Forum and the Palatine. They are all close to each other and can give at least half a day’s immersion into the ancient past.

The Art Maven

Your history buff child won’t be the only one having fun, because the history goes hand in hand with art at many places – including St. Peter’s Basilica where the two collide. The Vatican museums nearby will also provide hours and hours of entertainment – although you’ll want to make arrangements in advance if you don’t want to spend hours waiting in line.

The streets themselves are also filled with art and history, particularly in the historical centres such as Piazza Navona. It is home to yet more superb Bernini sculptures, which sit on an ancient racetrack, as well as Campo de’ Fiori and Piazza di Spagna with the awesome Spanish Steps.

The Shopaholic

Those who find Bulgari more awe-inspiring than Bernini don’t need to fear boredom- it is the capital of Italy, after all! For the fashionista of the family, there’s no need to stay behind at the family hotel in Rome flipping through the fashion channels while the geeks ooh and ahh over ancient history. There’s plenty to gape at (and spend on) for the fashion forward very near the Spanish Steps, and the biggest names in Italian fashion, including Fendi, Valentino, Bulgari, Prada, Armani, Versace, Ferragamo, Cavalli, Gucci, and many others are just a stone’s throw away from the historic squares. Mark the Via Condotti, Via Borgognona, Via Frattina, Via Sistina, and Via Bocca de Leone on those map apps and get out and shop ’til you drop.

Food Glorious Food

Even if your family has the most diverse tastes in food, everyone is catered for in the Italian capital! Dine in any of the wonderful restaurants that serve home-style meals around your family hotel in Rome, or treat the entire family to a fine dining experience in one of the many upmarket establishments.

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6 Travel Tips Everyone Should Know

Several countries, thousands of flights and endless road trips. That’s the life of a travel writer, and it teaches you a lot of fair things. I would like to share some of my travel tips with you as I found them very helpful on every trip I went on.

Be Annoying

It’s time to talk to different people. The waiter, the concierge, the bar staff or that customer sitting at the next table who looks good. Ask them questions about what to see, and you will find that people will love to share their tips and knowledge with you. Trust me many people get nervous, but starting a conversation randomly and you are just a step near to the next hidden gem.

Get Out Of The Bed

This is the most difficult thing to deal with, especially for those who love to stay in bed a little longer than usual. It’s best you get up early because there is a lot that happens before the brunch time. So get out and head out to a diner for breakfast in Washington or hit the best beach in Italy before hordes of tourists reach there. Trust me you won’t regret this one; you can sleep as much as you want once you reach home.

Keep Your Phone Charged

There is nothing worse than being out of technology due to a dead battery. Keep a power bank with you so that you are never out of battery.

Join The Cloud

That iPhone is not worth any value, and that is for one main reason: pictures. Memories are the best thing you make on trips, and without them, the charm of going on a journey will be lost. Gone are the days when you use to keep the manual backup. Apple now keeps you covered with iCloud, set your cloud up and get access to every photo and video from anywhere.

Remember Your Favourites

Remember that fantastic restaurant you went to the last time you visited New York four years ago? No? That’s bad! Next time just ask your phone to remember it, in Google Maps only write the name of the place and then hit “save”. This method will help mark it with a star so you can always go back and check it out.

Carry Cash

From Amsterdam to Cambodia, being short for money is not a great deal. You won’t find an ATM everywhere, and you can’t always use your debit/credit cards to pay for hotels, bars and restaurants. Carry an emergency cash with you around $150 in USD or the local currency of the destination you are visiting.

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4 Reasons Why Palm Springs Is the Ideal Spa Break Destination

There are many gorgeous spots across the world that make for wonderful spa breaks, yet Palm Springs in California remains one of the most popular ones, especially for those living in the United States. Here are four great reasons why this hot spot might make for the perfect relaxing getaway for you too.

Firstly, one of the main reasons why this particular part of the country is popular with those looking to unwind on a spa break is that Palm Springs really does offer some of the best scenery and weather in the State of California. Its desert location features scorching temperatures, perfect for those who are looking to enjoy a little bit of sunshine on their break.

The area also offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life; as a popular resort town, much here is geared to those on spa vacations, making it a truly relaxed and relaxing place to be. Furthermore, with majestic mountains, glimmering pools, lofty palm trees and expansive green spaces, this particular location is truly like a beautiful desert oasis.

The second reason why you should consider booking spa packages in Palm Springs is that there is plenty of choice here for all budgets. Vacationing in this destination is popular with the rich and famous, but these are certainly not the only people who can afford to travel here.

There are full service resorts, midsize resorts and boutique hotels, not to mention condos and villas for rent for those who want a little more freedom during their break. This means that people can enjoy the spa experience in their hotel, or even hire luxury spa services on location at their vacation rental.

With such variety, it is sure that there is something to fit everyone’s budget. There are also many airlines – both domestic and international – offering inexpensive flights to this area, including from areas such as Seattle, San Francisco and Minneapolis. This helps make this sunny destination both easy to get to and affordable.

The third reason why it is worth booking spa packages in Palm Springs is that it is world-renowned for being an excellent destination for those looking for quality spa treatments. As mentioned above, one of the main attractions of this part of the country is the area’s resort nature, meaning that there is plenty here tailored to visitors.

Due to this, there are many different treatment packages available, ranging from full body massages and hot stone massages to speciality facials and beauty treatments. There are also numerous beauty and hair salons in the city, meaning that this is the perfect place to get a full makeover and reveal a new look.

Fourthly, a fantastic reason to visit this particular California location is that it has plenty to offer apart from its fantastic range of luxurious hotels and spa treatment options. Palm Springs has a fascinating history, and a number of its neighbourhoods have cultural and historical significance.

Although the city has rightfully earned its reputation as a luxury resort town there is plenty more to see and do here if visitors so wish. Some of the fascinating and exciting events that take place here each year include a Festival of Native Film and Culture, the Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival, the Palm Springs International Film Festival and the Palm Springs Festival of Lights Parade.

As you can see, there are many reasons why booking hotels and spa packages in Palm Springs could be a wonderful idea for you. Not only is the climate warm and the scenery stunning, but there is also a huge range of accommodation and luxury spa treatment options. Furthermore, the city itself boasts a range of cultural attractions, ensuring that you will never get bored.

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Bye Bye Holidays and Holiday Eating

Bye Bye Holidays

Hoping everyone had a fun, fantastic, exciting and relaxing mix of Holiday eventfulness or lack thereof. Whatever it was that you did, that it most suited your moods and needs. Since the holidays were shortened into one compact week, Saturday to the next weeks Sunday, there was no time to languish. You had to seize that holiday time with both hands and feet to get the most out of it.

Holidays for me mean visiting family, since they live in another country (Canada) this is only a biannual event and therefore more meaningful. I have to inhale everyone to their essence and then painfully let go. Because it’s a large family it takes concentration and a lot of energy, especially because there are a growing number of children and I certainly don’t want to miss any of the details of their development. I also want them to remember me meaningfully until the next time I see them in six months. Holiday shopping helps.

With family being the central focus of the holidays all the other holiday concerns melt away. Though in the end after we arrived back in New York and I stepped back on my weight scale and I realized something very important. I’m sure you remember my first “diet” experiment which was ‘ Atkins’ and its terrible results. I have since brought the carbs back into my daily regime focusing once again on healthy, whole grains, veggies galore plus lean proteins. Also I am trying to eat more meals with smaller portions for blood sugar regulation, meaning no blood sugar spikes that trigger insulin which triggers cortisol causing fat storage around the abdomen. I can usually make time for four meals a day. So this years results from Holiday foods were astounding because my weight hadn’t changed at all. Whereas last year when I had stopped the Atkins I had gained four pounds over the holidays. Here’s the reason why I had such different results. It wasn’t because this time around I was more disciplined and controlled. It also wasn’t because I avoided food. It was because my body was used to the carbs which are a necessary component of daily nutrients so I didn’t have this overreaction with water retention to the extra carbs.
I have to tell you here that my brothers wife Bonnie is an amazing cook. I strongly advised her to share her gifts and take up her talents professionally. Anything she made I had to try because I knew how fantastic it would be. Though I admit she uses sugar and some kind of white flour and butters I allow anything she makes into my stomach because it is glorious and therefore has to be good for me. I know its not rational but the scale doesn’t lie and I gained not a pound. I also had only a few days of eating these foods but enough to have done damage last year.

Another part of the mysterious weight patterns is that once my body got used to the carbs again with a healthy balanced regime, my metabolism found its homeostasis, a set point where the body wants to stay. Yes it’s a couple pounds over where I was when on Atkins but it is now healthy and balanced and amazingly easy to maintain…as my Holiday experience showed. Workouts? Well okay I squeezed in a couple, I wasn’t sedentary and walked outside with my mother in eight inches of snow and howling winds for an hour one day. Which I couldn’t have done while on Atkins due to lack of energy.

Now I’m not telling you to go out with reckless abandon and eat whatever tastes good. In your day to day routine discipline and control tempered with regular exercise are your mainstays to health, fitness and keeping young. The good thing about eating carbs is that during Holidays you can kick your feet up, enjoy yourself, relax and make the most of what life has to offer.

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Three Top Jamaican Vacation Destination Reviews

Negril Vacation

Negril is one of the most popular destinations in the island of Jamaica. It is a destination filled with amazing romantic resorts, great excitement, fulfilling activities and lovely natural adventures. Visitors will love the different waterfalls, great beaches, wonderful water sports activities and excellent land sports activities as well. Also, the destination offers lovely Jamaican music both live and recorded at many resorts and hotels at the destination. The Jamaican foods on offer are always delightful to visitors. You will love the famous Jamaican jerk chicken or fish and the amazing curry goat soup which are always on offer. The destination offers lots of top resorts and hotels. Visitors looking for a family resort in Negril they can look at Club Hotel Riu Negril, Beaches Sandy Bay and Beaches Negril Resort and Spa. Vacationers looking for an all-inclusive Negril vacation offer they can look at Sandals Negril Beach Resort and Spa, Couple Negril and Couples Swept Away Negril. Two of the top Negril romantic or an adult only vacation resorts are Breezes Grand Resort and Spa and the Hedonism Two Negril.

Runaway Bay Vacation

Runaway Bay is another lovely Jamaican destination. It is a lovely tropical vacation spot. The destination has some of the top golf courses on the island. One of the lovely thing about Runaway Bay is closeness to some of the major attraction in Jamaica. These include the Green Grotto Cave, Dunn’s River Falls, Chukka Adventure Tours and Dolphins Cove. The various activities offered at the attractions are excellent activities for visitors who lovely to enjoy nature. Three of the well-known family resorts in Runaway Bay are Royal Decameron Club Caribbean, Gran Bahia Principe Jamaica and Frankly D. Resort and Spa. A lovely all-inclusive resort at the destination is Breezes Resort, Spa and Golf Club. Club Ambiance, N Resort and Breezes Resort, Spa and Golf Club are excellent adult only or romantic resort to visit in Runaway Bay.

Montego Bay Vacation

The Jamaica destination of Montego Bay is another famous Jamaican vacation destination. Montego is home of some of the top hotels and resorts on the island. It is a place that offers lovely beaches, wonderful water sports attractions, world-class golf courses and beautiful tropical attractions. Two of the top beaches in Montego Bay are Doctor’s Cavern Beach and Cornwall Beach. These beaches are ideal for water sporting activities. There is also the Rose Hall Great House in Montego which has a lot of historical significant to the history of the destination. Other notable attractions are the Rocklands Feeding Station, Rocklands which is home to may rare species of the birds including the Doctor Bird Jamaica national bird, and the Ipswich Caves. Some of the destination top family destinations are Riu Montego Bay, Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, Sunset Beach Resort, Spa and Waterpark, and the Ritz-Carlton Golf and Spa Resort Rose Hall. The Sandals Carlyle Inn, Secrets Wild Orchid and the Coyaba Beach Resort and Club are some of the top all-inclusive resorts in Montego Bay. Other top adult only or romantic resorts are Sandals Montego Bay, Secrets St. James, and Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall.

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Anticipatory Grief and Holidays: 12 Survival Tips

Anticipatory grief – a feeling of loss before a death or dreaded event occurs – is a hard journey. Holidays make it even harder. At a time when you’re supposed to feel happy and joyful, you feel sad and anxious. You’re on pins and needles and wonder what will happen next.

Remember, your grief stems from love, and you may find comfort in that. Holidays don’t erase your reasons for feeling sad and lonely, according to the National Mental Health Association, and “there is room for these feelings to be present.” So accept your feelings and, if you feel like crying, go ahead and do it.

Crying will help you to feel better. Here are some other ways you can help yourself.

BE REALISTIC. You don’t have to create a “perfect” holiday. Do you really need to knit sweaters for everyone? No. Do you really need to serve a six course meal? No. What you need to do is set realistic goals, get organized, and pace yourself. Rather than focusing on one day, the National Mental Health Association recommends focusing on “a season of holiday sentiment.”

ASK FOR HELP. You don’t need to do everything yourself. Family members and friends will be glad to help with planning, decorating, and cooking. One family member could bring a traditional dish, such as pumpkin pie. Another family member could provide linens and launder them afterwards. Your request for help makes others feel needed.

BUDGET. Finances can cause stress at any time, but they cause lots of stress during the holidays. Set a budget for gifts, decorations, and entertaining. Staying within your budget will make you feel better about the holidays and yourself. Your gifts don’t have to be new. Holiays are a perfect time to pass along family possessions – a flower vase, historic photo, or beloved book. Stick a short note about the item in with your gift.

EAT RIGHT. Because nutrition affects brain chemistry, you need to eat balanced meals during the holidays. Yummy as they look, pass up the candy and cookies that come your way. Choose lots of fruits and veggies from the buffet table and one dessert. Keeping a supply of healthy snacks on hand will also help you to eat right.

DRINK MODERATELY. Alcohol makes the holiday blues worse, according to the National Mental Health Association. Too much alcohol can cause you to say things you’ll regret later. If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation or skip it all together. Drink sparkling cider, non-alcoholic punch, or flavored water instead of alcohol.

GET ENOUGH SLEEP. You’ve probably thinking, “Yeah, right.” But you need sleep to survive the holidays. Getting enough sleep is hard to do with so many holiday events going on. However, you may be selective about what you attend, leave early, and get a good night’s sleep. Balance a late night with a short nap the next day.

LIGHT YOUR WAY. Vanerbilt University wellness experts say more people get depressed during the holidays than at any other time. Some of these people have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). If you live in a cold climate and the days are short you may wish to be evaluated for SAD. Phototherapy (intense lighting) is usually recommended for those with SAD. Even if you don’ have SAD well lit rooms will lift your spirits.

EXERCISE. Daily physical activity is a proven way to cope with stress. Walk around town or the local mall and look at holiday decorations. Play catch with your kids or grandkids. Bundle up and go cross country skiing. A half hour of physical activity per day helps to chase the blues away.

BE CONCILATORY. According to family tensions may flare during the holidays if members are “thrust together for several days.” Holidays aren’t the time to settle family disputes, they’re a time for concilatory and kind behavior. Discuss family grievances at a later date.

HELP OTHERS. Holidays are associated with families and togetherness according to Jill RachBeisel, MD, Director of Community Psychiatry at the University of Maryland. But, due to the divorce rate and fragmented families, many don’t have this kind of holiay experience. Still, you may connect with a substitute family by volunteering a a senior center, reading to shut-ins, or tutoring children.

MAKE NEW MEMORIES. The memories you make during this holiday season may comfort you in the future. Take digital photos of holiday events and put them on a CD. Send copies of the CD to all family members. Every family has stories to tell and you may create new memories by tape recording some of these stories. You may also videotape holiday events.

SAVOR THE MOMENT. Though you are sorrowful, you’re alive, able to be with those you love and care about. Surround yourself with life: family members, dear friends, colorful flowers, a tail-wagging dog, and hobbies that make you happy. For every moment of life – even the sorrowful ones – is a miracle.

Copyright 2005 by Harriet Hodgson. To learn more about her work go to

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The Maldives – A Destination Everyone Should Visit

Following the horrendous events on Boxing Day 2005 The Maldives has refused to let the vast power of the Tsunami beat it and has returned to its former glory. Despite 99% of the Maldives being covered by water and the islands themselves a mere 6 feet above sea level the Maldives remains a stunning destination that everyone should visit at least once in there lives.

The Maldives has been one of the most popular holiday destinations in the Indian Ocean for many years and understandably so. The introduction of cheap flights from a variety of UK airports and the abundance of good quality and affordable accommodation has opened up this collection of some 1000 coral island to those of us that want to see the world. Many of these island are accessible from Male by speed boat, as familiar in the Maldives as cars are in the western world. Journeys can vary from 20 minutes to 2 hours although for the longer durations and those of us who don’t possess sea legs its just as easy to take a sea plane to our chosen island. The draw of relaxing on beautiful safe beaches under year round warm sunshine and wading out in crystal clear blue sea to view shells of tropical fish has proved to much for many of us to resist.

Around 100 of these coral islands are for visitors with usually just one hotel on each island. Some have become quite sophisticated with mod cons such as air conditioning, swimming pools and luxury spa’s, a choice of restaurants and entertainment where as others have retained the typical “no news no shoes” flavour of the Maldives with thatched roofs, open air bathrooms, unheated water and few facilities. The ingenious introduction of building small bungalows on stilts out in the sea an yet attached by decking to the mainland has proved to be a winner and a far cry from my suburban home, stepping on to the sundeck of our private bungalow down 5 or 6 wooden steps into waist high warm water was something to behold.

Surrounded by crystal clear water it’s not surprising that these idyllic coral islands rank amongst the best diving destinations in the world. This is a destination to enjoy the breathtaking scenery and partake in some of the numerous activities at your leisure.

The rare beauty of the magnificent underwater world has made these islands one of the most enchanting diving destinations in the world. There are many dive sites catering for all levels of diver providing the opportunity to explore nature beneath the sea and if diving’s not for you there is some superb reef’s idea for snorkelling where visibility sometimes exceeds 50 meters. Swimming and snorkelling are at their best when the water is at it’s calmest usually in December through to April when the rainfall is at it lowest. The rainfall is at its highest during the south-west monsoon, normally May through to November. The temperature though remains around 30 degrees centigrade all year round.

Having just returned from a relaxing week lying in the sun and mixing with my fellow holiday maker I was staggered to realise just how many people thought they’d just go for a walk around the local town or would eat in a variety of local restaurants. This just isn’t that type of place, to enjoy this unspoilt natural environment as it is means there is no nipping off to the local off licence for a bottle of rum or saving your pennies and going to a local café for lunch. Due to necessity almost everything has to be imported to these tiny islands and many extras can be expensive but its possible to pre pay for most things in the UK and I assure you, a small price to pay to swim in the warm blue waters amongst tropical fish and to experience the unspoilt beauty that makes the Maldives a destination that everyone should visit.

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Take Your Holiday To Florida And Enjoy The Unusual Side

If you are into paranormal happenings, you will want to plan your holiday to Florida to start at Tallahassee. The Sunland Hospital is a point of interest for seekers of the unknown. It is said that the patients of the hospital were mistreated and is now haunted by a few. The hospital has been closed for over twenty years. You cannot enter the building, but it is something to see. Another fascinating place is the Old City Cemetery in Tallahassee. A supposes white witch is buried in the cemetery and her gave is the most visited gave there. Her gave faces west instead of east like most.

The two other places you might find interesting when you are planning your holiday to Florida are Florida State University and the University Cawthon Hall Dormitory. Some say that former cadets that were housed there many years ago haunt the University. A woman can be seen walking outside the campus grounds right around midnight. The dormitory seems to house a poltergeist. This place is something to see and hear the unusual stories. Two other places to explore are the Oak Lawn Cemetery and the Lively Building for some adventure.

Paranormal happening are part of Florida and other areas of the world. It does seem that Tallahassee has more than there share of ghosts and haunting. Your holiday to Florida will be exciting to say the least when you plan a vacation seeking haunting places around Florida. After Tallahassee, you can travel to Fort Lauderdale where you can visit the Butterfly World. It is an amazing collection of beautiful and colorful butterflies. Since you are not far from Miami, you can visit the Monkey Jungle Farm. The monkeys run wild and you are the one in a cage so to speak. It is fun to sit and watch for hours.

Holidays to Florida do not have to be about Disney World or Sea World. It can be about adventure and seeing things that are off the beaten track. The one place to spend the entire day is at the Miami Zoo. The animals and exhibits are amazing to watch. Some of the antics of the habitants of the zoo will delight any age. You can enjoy a nice sunny day without worrying about lunch or dinner. The zoo grounds have some very nice eateries where you can have a quick lunch or a sit down lunch.

When you are planning your holiday to Florida, you want to plan a few other places to see or maybe you will want to spend a few days in the sun. The beaches are enjoyable as well as the nightlife. You can visit some excellent nightclubs in Miami, Fort Lauderdale or Tallahassee. The areas are interesting and have live entertainment and some fine restaurants for dining. You are going to enjoy your time in Florida no matter how you plan your trip. You should try to see some of the unusual things Florida has to offer.

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Five Secrets To Help You Find The Best Tattoo And Piercing Destination

When you are the kind of person that is in deep into the tattoo and piercing world, you don’t sweat being able to find a parlor that gets you some really satisfying body art. It’s kind of nice to have that kind of “in” when inspiration hits. For others, though, especially if it is their first foray into body art, knowing where to get a great tattoo or expert piercing can be incredibly difficult.

Now, there are probably some of you out there who might find the notion of having a hard time getting a tattoo or a piercing kind of silly. After all, there once was a time when you could get a pretty snazzy bit of ink at a carnival all while your kids ate cotton candy & played games. Times have changed, and with these changes comes new standards in health & safety.

There is also a much greater fascination and acceptance of body art than there used to be. Now, it’s not uncommon to see soccer moms sporting a little bit of ink or a cute little nose ring. You might even spot a little bit of ink just poking out of the rolled-up sleeve of your geography teacher. There was a time when body art was for the outliers of society, but that just isn’t the case. This, of course, creates a golden opportunity for artists looking to make some serious financial gains by providing a welcome service.

We go back, again, to the possible first-timer looking to get a tattoo or a piercing. If he or she is to find a reputable parlor or artist, where should they start?

Here are a few secrets to finding the best tattoo and piercing destination:

Check Online – As is the case for anything you are curious about these days, the first place you want to check for reputable parlors is online. Check parlor websites, online business reviews, and even check public health records to see how a place stacks up.

Ask People About Their Body Art – If you rock a “tat” or a piercing, nothing is cooler than when someone asks you where you got your sick ink from. Ask friends, family, and co-workers where they’d recommend you go.

Have A Design or Piercing In Mind – By knowing what you want ahead of time, you can determine whether a parlor/artist can deliver what you want. If you’re not happy with the process by which they go by, then they may not be the place to go.

Visit Parlors/Shops and Check Them Out – Just because you go in doesn’t mean you have to “buy” something. Check out the shop, look at any photos they have of past clients, ask questions, and get a feel for the place.

“Interview” Artists – If you have the chance, talk to some artists & see if you click with them. Find out about their background, the process of their work, and even the supplies they use. If an artist isn’t willing to “talk shop” with you, go someplace else.

Finding the best tattoo and piercing destination for your first, or hundredth, bit of body art shouldn’t be a stressful time. You should relish in the idea that you’re doing something that’s got a little edge, a lot of coolness, and definitely makes you unique.

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Top Ten Tips for Winning a Lowest Unique Bid Auction

1. Bid early

The earlier you bid, the more of an idea you will have of what is happening with the auction. Just a few strategically placed bids will let you see from your bidding table roughly where the lowest unique bid is at any time.

2. Keep checking

Just because you are currently winning an auction, don’t rest on your laurels! You could be outbid at any time so it’s down to you to keep checking back.

3. Don’t give up

Just because you don’t have the lowest unique bid, that doesn’t mean that you won’t find it! Bid strategically and you’ll soon work out where it is!

4. Don’t spend more than you can afford

It’s important to bid responsibly and set out with a figure in mind that you are willing to go up to in order to win the prize you are bidding on.

5. Make sure you get value for money

If you intend to bid numerous times in a particular auction, make sure you look for any special offers and free bids. In all such auctions, you will have to pay to bid because this is how the companies make their money.

6. Rope in your friends

If you are aiming to win a big prize such as a holiday that you will be sharing with others, don’t be afraid to ask them to chip in towards winning it, that way you won’t be taking such a big risk yourself.

7. Check other auctions

If the site you look at doesn’t have the prizes you want, then have a look around at some other websites. Don’t bid for something just to have a go at the game, wait until you find something that you would really like to win.

8. Don’t use your bids all at once

On most websites, your bids won’t expire, so don’t be afraid to leave a few in your account to use later on.

9. Do your research

Before you start to bid on anything or pay any money, make sure that you understand how it works. We see too many people bidding large amounts of money that will never win because they don’t understand the concept.

10. Don’t forget the last minute rush!

As with all auctions, if you have the lowest unique bid right at the end, everyone will be trying to outbid you! So make sure you are on the site, watching and waiting and ready to jump in to get the lowest unique bid back at the last minute!

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Condos In Destin Beat All Destination

Why is Destin a preferred vacation getaway?

Destin, a city named after Captain Leonard Destin who was a settler in the Northwest Florida and was a pioneer in the fishing industry, is today regarded as the luckiest fishing village of the world. Destin is a relaxation getaway located along the region most commonly referred to as the Emerald Coast. Known for its brimming sunshine, the white sands, plenty of stunning waters and the splendor of its sugar-white sandy and long beaches, Destin is the exciting vacation and excursion destination which is surely miles beyond the ordinary.

One of the perfect ways to capture Destin’s essence is by taking an excursion on a deep sea fishing expedition or charter boat tours where you would see fishing resorts that are world class. Destin is a city with premier vacation status, fantastic shopping, good and world class restaurants in abundance, and various other interesting attractions. Some of the great attracting sites in Destin include the Big Kahuna, Dolphin Cruises, Adventure Park, Water Park, art galleries, and the museums. The attracting events or festivals include Destin Fishing Rodeo and Destin Seafood Festival.

Why are condos in Destin better alternatives to hotel rooms?

Condos in Destin are as exceptional as the city itself with all the amenities, comforts and luxuries of home away from home, private pool, spacious rooms, full kitchen, several television sets and DVD players and many more. These Destin Condos vacation rentals provide you with vacation fun adventure in continuation of all the fabulous attractions the city of Destin provides. Here are some cogent reasons why condo rentals in Destin are better alternatives to hotel rooms.

Condos provide you excellent choices and save you money:

Condominiums in Destin offer you the benefits of choices that are excellent. Besides, you have the opportunity of saving money and yet enjoy an incredible vacation. A condo is cheaper than a hotel room of comparable features and sizes which is why it is a wise and frugal step for you if you are planning your vacation on a budget. You can accommodate more people and increase your savings, cook your own meals especially in the evenings, and spend the savings made from renting vacation condos in Destin elsewhere.

If you make off-peak seasons your target and book your condo rentals way in advance, you will enjoy more flexible prices than a hotel room and you may even be able to find condo owners and get more discounts through better negotiation. Condos offer you the real living space: If you are looking for ways to spruce up your vacation or your family getaway, this is possibly the right time to look away from the traditional hotel rooms and settle for one of the best and spacious vacation accommodation that rental condos in Destin offers. Condominiums have the advantage of offering you the real living space which you will find to be more than just a place to take your deserved rest at night but rather, condos in Destin provides you a place to enjoy your vacation as well as your time with your family.

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Post Divorce Holiday Parenting Tips

The holiday season is officially upon us, and while this can be an exciting and magical time of year, it can also be a stressful time, especially for parents who have recently gone through a divorce.

Most parents struggle the first few holiday seasons after a divorce or separation occurs as they get used to new schedules and holiday traditions. It can also be very difficult to spend the holidays away from your children. This is especially true around Christmas time.

However, it is important to remember who the holidays are really about: your kids. An article from the Huffington Post recently provided some good tips on how to put the children first and manage parenting time during the holidays and holiday season. A link to this article is posted at the end of this article for you to read.

First, the article said to make sure that the children remain the No. 1 priority. It can be easy to get caught up in your own emotions, wants and needs, but putting the children first means allowing them to spend time with family on both sides of the family and keeping them out of any parenting disputes.

Second, if there is any confusion over who should have the children when, consult your divorce decree. Chances are that the decree provides specific instructions as to what was determined to be in the children’s best interests for dividing holiday time. If you forsee or experience problems it would be wise to talk to your Orlando family or Orlando divorce attorney about your concerns.

Next, it’s smart to start planning out a holiday parenting schedule ahead of time. in advance. With Christmas just a few weeks away, now is the time to establish a holiday parents schedule if you haven’t already done so. Then make sure to let your children and family know what the holiday plans are so that they can feel prepared.

Finally, don’t make the holidays about competing with your ex husband or ex wife. Divorced parents have a tendency to want to “out do” the other parent during the holidays by buying more presents or celebrating more extravagantly, but it’s never a good idea to try to buy your children’s love in any situation including upcoming holidays.

These are great tips for divorced parents to keep in mind over the holiday season. Even though this can be a tough transition in the beginning, rest assured that it will get easier over time after you have created new traditions and memories.

Article link –

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Chengdu Tourism – A Famous Destination of the Tourism Industry

Chengdu is a beautiful city in the country of China. It is the capital of Sichuan, a famous province in China. Chengdu is one of the most popular tourist attractions in China because of the city’s weather, lifestyle, and the environment. The city is considered to have a rich culture, and history is worth knowing. There are a large number of places to visit in the city of Chengdu. Tourists from all over the world visit these places everywhere to explore the beauty of the place and spend time with their family and friends.

Best time for Chengdu Travel:

Chengdu has pleasant weather, and any time in the entire year is ideal for a visit. The winters in this place are extremely cold and wet. The climate in summers also is extremely hot. Although this place can be visited anytime, Spring and Falk are the best seasons. Therefore, the months from March to June and September to November are perfect for visiting because of the pleasant seasons.

What is Loved by Chengdu Tourists?

As mentioned, Chengdu has various tourist attractions all across the city. Given below are the top 5 major tourist attractions of Chengdu, which should not be missed.

  • Chengdu Panda Base:

As the name suggests, Chengdu Panda Base is the home of one of the rarest yet adorable species – The Pandas. Initially, this place had only six wild pandas who were brought in from the jungle. Today, there are more than 150 pandas who come under different endangered giant panda species. Today, Chengdu Panda Base is the largest Panda reserve in the world.

  • Wuhou Temple:

Wuhou Temple, also known as Wuhou Shrine, is a beautiful pilgrimage center in the city. The temple was built in ancient times and had ancient Chinese architecture, which is intricate and beautiful to look at. This temple was built in memory of the Three Kingdoms. This temple also consists of a Tranquil Garden, which is full of greenery and sweet-smelling flowers.

  • Xiling Snow Mountain:

This place is one of the most visited sites by tourists for fun, adventure, and thrill. Xiling Snow Mountain is a beautiful location with beautiful white snow and pleasant weather. This place is famous for skiing sports and is also known as the Ski Wonderland.

  • Jinli Ancient Street

This place is an all in one entertainment pack and is the best place for food lovers. There are a variety of restaurants in this street loaded with the best snack items. The look and feel of this place are ancient with a modern touch. A variety of street performances are also hosted, which are enjoyed by visitors.

  • Du Fu Thatched Cottage

This place is the best place to visit for poetry lovers. This was built in memory of Du Fu, a famous Chinese poet. All his writings and poems can be found in this place. This location also has a museum with ancient scriptures and a temple for pilgrimage.

Chengdu city has many other tourist attractions in addition to the places mentioned above. But, those places are a must-visit in Chengdu for making the best memories.

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Tips And Strategies To Help You Lose Weight After The Holidays

Tips and strategies for losing weight after holidays. The first step you need to take when trying to lose weight after the holidays is to weigh yourself. This is a simple and easy step that most people forget to take. Why is it important? If you weigh yourself, you will find out how much weight you need to lose. You will also have to find out how much weight you gained over the holiday period.

The second step will be do a 72-hour food audit so that you can identify the type of food, you typically eat This help you identify the food you need cut down on. it could be high density energy food types like pizza or it could be fast food. It could also be that the frequency and quantity of food that you eat has increased. If you notice that you have been eating more food over the holidays, then one of the strategies you can use to lose weight after the holidays is cut down on the quantity of food you eat after the holidays. Start today!

Drink at least a glass of water per meal. Why? Research has shown that drinking water before a meal will help to expand your stomach. This approach will make you feel completely full when you are only 80% full. This is important because eating only up to 80 % full was one of the common practices of people of Okinawa in Japan, who have the highest number of centenarians in the world (Boyle & Long, 2010). If you want to lose weight relentlessly without making it seem like a tedious task then drink at least two glasses of water per meal and eat more fruits and vegetables. This will help you reduce your total calorie intake per meal and slowly lose weight without counting calories.

Apart from starting every meal with a glass of water, make sure you also add vegetables, like cabbage, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, spinach and bananas to your meals. Eating a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables per meal with reduced portions of your regular or usual meal will significantly help you to lose significant pounds and keep them off. Remember calories in calories out.

Do you know the factors that make you want to eat more food? One factor is stress. If you truly want to lose height, you need to make sure that you do not get too stressed out about your post holiday bills or relationship issues. Wren you regularly write down what stresses you out, and what you eat after you are stressed out, you will be in better control to lose weight and keep it off. This is part of the process of relentless self-mastery.

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5 Tips for Combining Business and Leisure Travel, Destination Mideast

As summer approaches, I always ask myself how can I run two businesses and still get away. Travel research shows that we Americans are most likely to forfeit vacation days. The best solution I see is combining business with pleasure on every trip abroad.

Having signed up for a conference in Dubai, I was intrigued by the modern-day Mideast while wanting to know more about its ancient cultures. After some investigation, I found a flight to Dubai via Jordan with a few days stopover.

Leaving nothing to chance, I arranged an airport pick-up and booked a 5 star hotel well located in a chic part of Amman with multiple restaurant options nearby and within the hotel. Having studied Arabic, I was pleased to get to practice it even though the Egyptian courses I studied differed substantially from the Jordanian dialect.

As a crossroads, Jordan has a remarkable history from the ancient Nabataeans to Alexander the Great, the Romans, Byzantine and Arab cultures. Beyond its historical monuments, Jordan has a very vibrant present day culture. Shortly after my arrival, I saw this first hand as a local wedding party made its way through the hotel lobby to celebrate with dancing and music.

The following day I headed out on a day tour of the capital exploring Amman’s Roman ruins. I stood transfixed high over the city listening to the muezzin’s call to prayer. With only a brief stay, I made the most of the time taking a driver as local guide for about 12 hours each day. Fortunately, distances were fairly close with the next day’s exploration focused on the Roman ruins in Jerash. Its popular history starts at the time of Alexander the Great but fell to the Romans under Pompey in the first century AD. With the mild October climate, my guide and I then ate al fresco surrounded by vineyards. There was not a tour bus in sight!

The next day’s journey down to Byzantine Madaba ended at the renown Dead Sea. Famous for its spa treatments, I just had time to gaze at the sea before retracing my steps to Amman.

Saving the best to last meant a full day in the rose city of Petra built by the Nabataeans. Featured in Indiana Jones’s and other films and in a mystery novel by best-selling British writer Agatha Christie, it is a World Heritage Site that rivals the Pyramids. Beyond the large Treasury, there are a series of small buildings and conveniently located outdoor cafes and handicrafts for sale. Of course, the tourist route back to the entrance had to be on camel back providing great photo opps.

After an enchanting week, it was time to make my way to Dubai for a conference and brief sightseeing afterwards. Dubai is famous for the unexpected, like air conditioned bus stops, the Palm development and ultra-luxurious hotels. For me, as an “Intermittent Intermediate Skier”, I was fascinated by the indoor ski resort located in a local shopping mall. With limited expectations of a real workout, I knew this would make a great story and the perfect venue for a holiday card photo. After a feast of Southern Fried Chicken in the Mall of the Emirates Food Court, I covered my summer clothes with a colorful ski outfit and was up the escalator ski and poles in hand. After a few runs, it was off for hot chocolate at the adjacent St. Moritz Café and the perfect end to my Mideast odyssey.

As a woman traveling solo in the Mideast, I followed two practices I find work for me globally:

1. I arrange for an airport pick-up before leaving home. In certain countries, taxis may not be safe whether for men or women. Having navigated a low-grade civil war in sub-Sahara Africa, I learned to ask my hotel what they recommended, especially when traveling alone. In major capitals when arriving in day time, I often opt for public transportation, especially trains/subways or catching a cab.

2. I choose a 5 star hotel that has multiple restaurants options ideally both inside the hotel and nearby. Alternatively, when it was affordable as I found in Cairo, I took a driver who waited for me or in Lisbon caught a taxi round trip to try out top restaurants. In any new location, I always ask a lot of questions, especially to get local women’s opinions, before strolling alone after dark.

While in the Mideast, I did also have 2 additional rules of thumb:

1. Although I would be both sightseeing and attending a business conference in very hot desert weather, I wore long-sleeved shirts with slacks.

2. When I was the only woman alone in local restaurants, I always chose a seat/table right next to other pairs, groups of women, couples or families.

5 tips I have learned trying to combine business with pleasure:

1. To save on airfare, be sure to check out connecting flights allowing for extended layovers.

2. Where possible, take care of business first, especially if complex flights can cause lengthy delays.

3. Arrive over the weekend and make a trial run to locate your meetings’ fastest routes. Even with a GPS, it is easy to run into problems. In one city abroad, I found massive construction in the area surrounding my first meeting. Even walking, it was almost impossible to get through, and street addresses were obscured by the construction scaffolding. In another foreign city, I discovered when I arrived at an appointment that the outside door was locked, and I had trouble reaching anyone inside via my mobile phone.

4. Fly in or carry on a suit or an appropriate business look in case your luggage does not arrive on time.

5. Set multiple alarms on a travel clock, on your mobile phone and with the hotel operator. Even in top hotels, I have had a missed wake-up call or room service error before a flight for a quick day trip. (If you cannot function without coffee or breakfast, have a backup plan, as needed, if room service fails to appear.)

The key is to plan ahead where possible and have some time to survey your destination. Otherwise, a video conference in lieu of a face-to-face meeting may be a better value.

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Can Your Holiday Baking Be Healthier?

The joy of baking seems to be on the rise during the holidays. Whether it is for a cookie exchange or a holiday gathering, baked goods are plentiful. There are so many sweet temptations that it is often hard to resist a handful of yummy baked goods that pop up during this time of year. I am not a huge baker, but when I do bake, I often find myself looking at the ingredients and wondering how I can make it healthier.

While changing the ingredients in a recipe to healthier alternatives doesn’t work out 100% of the time, it works out quite a bit and it is worth trying.

Here are a few tips on how to change a few ingredients to healthier alternatives when baking this holiday season.

1. Instead of using white sugar in your baking, why not try a natural sweetener as an alternative. Here are a few options with the conversion amounts.

Brown Rice Syrup: Consists of brown rice ground and cooked. It is moderately sweet. In recipes you will want to use a little more than sugar and reduce the amount of other liquid. ( 1 cup of sugar = 1 1/3 cup of brown rice syrup).

Honey: One of the oldest sweeteners, honey is sweeter than sugar so you will want to reduce the amount of honey compared to sugar (1 cup of sugar = 1/2 -1/3 cup of honey).

Maple Syrup: Contains many minerals and is great for baking. Be sure to buy 100% pure maple syrup and not maple-flavored corn syrup. (1 cup of sugar = 1/2 – 3/4 cup of maple syrup).

2. When a recipe calls for oil, an easy substitute that works really well is applesauce. I use this one almost every time oil is called for in a recipe. (1 cup of oil = 1 cup applesauce)

3. Sometimes people want or need to avoid dairy, but a favorite recipe calls for milk. When that happens you can use the same amount the recipe calls for but substitute it with one of the following:

Almond milk
Rice milk
Hemp milk
Soy milk

4. If a recipe calls for all purpose flour you can try one of the following listed below at a 1:1 ratio. However, this could cause a change in overall texture so switching this can sometimes be trial and error. I have personally tried all three options below and most of the time it has worked out pretty well.

Whole wheat pastry flour
Almond flour
Oat flour

Enjoy the festivities of baking this holiday season and try some healthy substitutes in your recipes. Pick one thing to change up if you don’t feel comfortable changing several things in your recipe, but give it a try because you just might like it better.

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How Social Media in Destination Marketing Works

Does your CVB or tourism bureau use social media in its destination marketing plan? If not, what are you waiting for?

According to a recent study, 81 percent of all marketers surveyed said their social media efforts have generated exposure to their business, and 61 percent of marketers saw an increase in Web traffic. If your destination isn’t keeping up with trends in social media, your CVB or tourism bureau is losing money. Here are a few ways to market your travel agency using social media.

1. Search for groups and individuals’ interests on social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace to find out what people are saying about your destination.

2. Publish your blog articles on Digg, Delicious, Reddit and other social bookmarking sites to generate a wider viewing audience.

3. Constantly update your travel blog with new information, paying attention to Google Keywords to improve your search engine results rankings.

4. Extend friendships to tourists (former and future) to maintain relationships and keep them coming back.

5. Use photo sharing sites to link pictures taken by tourists to create a community among people who are interested in your destination.

6. Twitter travel deals and packages, as well as updates on area construction, new businesses, events and festivals.

7. Offer contests and promotions through social media outlets to help increase your followers.

8. Create customized URLs to Facebook and Twitter to provide another contact option for tourists. (e.g.

9. Create a network or online community among all businesses in your area to provide more information to your future tourists, as well as generate more traffic back to your profiles

10. Post videos on a YouTube account of different activities to participate in at your destination.

Having an active presence in many social media platforms will not only generate more exposure to your CVB or tourism bureau, but it will also redirect people back to your Web site.

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Caribbean Holidays – For Oceanic Splash And Enticing Nightlife

Do we need relaxation? Yes! Scientists have proved it that all work and no play really make jack a dull boy. Without relaxation you can develop boredom which is really lethal. If you have time and zeal to explore the world then Caribbean holiday is the right option for you. You can choose among more than 30 beautiful destinations to give your eyes a beautiful experience.

The explorers choose Caribbean holidays for natural beauty and quiet atmosphere, beautiful beaches, art galleries, and other historical and cultural offerings. For seaside experiences, the beach options are seemingly endless that beckon with long curved strands of sand and deep blue oceanic water. And the weather adds spice to the whole beach experience.

If you are opting for Caribbean holidays then plethora of land activities are waiting for you. You can enjoy horseback riding, bird watching, biking and sight seeing. Art aficionados may enjoy touring various art galleries, which feature a mix of local and Caribbean crafts, woodcarving, hand-blown glass and fine art. In fact every month of a year has something to offer for the travelers of the Caribbean.

You can enjoy music festival on some Caribbean island in the month of March, in May you can experience the joy of yacht races. Also, august carnival is world famous among travelers which is beloved for parades, calypso and wooden boat racing. On some Caribbean island you can enjoy Tranquility Jazz Festival in November which brings performances by regional and international musicians.

What more a traveler can expect from a holiday. Caribbean holidays are also ideal for dining, nightlife and sightseeing. The Caribbean islands are well connected with the rest of the world and you can reach their easily by flight from anywhere of the world. Enjoy the holiday with your family or friends and get ready to experience a whole new world which is full of fun, excitement, relaxation and of course the peace of mind.

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World Destination Travel Tips – All About Touring Morocco

It is always a good thing to travel to new places. If you have time, money and passion for travel and fun, you could go away every year to some of the world’s best tourist destinations. A great place you could explore any time soon is Morocco. Generally a Muslim nation, Morocco is extremely diverse in terms of landscape. Besides its coastlines, the country has dry, barren deserts, mountains and forested regions.

In addition, it has a very rich cultural heritage with European and Arabic influences. Morocco is occupied mainly Berbers and Arabs. The former are believed to be the descendants of Portuguese and Spaniards who escaped from the Reconquista of the Iberian Peninsula in 1400s. Being home to one of the most reputable and desirable long sandy beaches along the Atlantic coast, (Casablanca) Morocco is a great place to go with your family.

As you can already speculate, water sports and wind sports are common things to do for tourists. The most renowned of all sports is surfing. In case you will come to surf, just go straight to coastal towns with surfing spots. So you want to go to the Mediterranean shores, North Atlantic Coast or South Atlantic Coast. To see the famous Casablanca beach you will have to go to Rabat, the country’s capital, in the North Atlantic Coast. There is a lot of things to see and do here, particularly for couples who want to have the most memorable honeymoons.

In addition to this, ensure that you visit the Atlantic Coast of Tangier that offers the cleanest and coldest waters. It is best visited in the hot months of July and August. If you cannot travel in summer, your alternative destination is the Mediterranean shores of Tangier. If you love a coastal area that is bordered by mountains, then ensure that you tour Plage Quemada, Al Hoceima. It is in the middle of the Rif Mountains that are found along the north Mediterranean seashore.

Though always crowded and busy, Plage Quemada beach is totally clean, beautiful and scenic. There is also another beach called Asfiha, which is not recommended for swimmers or those who like beach walks because of its shallow water levels and sticky, dirty sand. So this place is probably ideal for sight-seeing, particularly visiting the Spanish Island.

Agadir beaches are on the Atlantic coast in southwest region of the country. It is ideal for lovers of water sports who can either go to private beach areas or long sandy ones meant for public. Tangier beach is obviously perfect for surfing and other water activities and you can receive some basic training if you are new to this. Surrounded by huge mountains, Tangier, is one the most attractive beaches along the Atlantic Ocean.

It is loved by tourists and local people alike, and its white-washed homes are special landmarks as well. As you wide up your trip in Morocco, remember to buy some souvenirs to take home to your friends and family. Good examples include tagines, handmade Berber carpets, Birad, Argan oil, spices and leather accessories among other things.

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Neat & Simple Checklist to Simplify and Organize Sending Holiday Cards!

Here’s a step-by-step checklist to simplify and make it easier to send those holiday cards on time.


The most important reason for sending a card is how it will make people feel. With that in mind, go ahead and make some cuts. For example, keep only the following people on your card list:

  1. Family members and friends who send you cards and would feel hurt if you didn’t send a card.
  2. People who exchange updates with you every year.
  3. Older people you know don’t get a lot of cards, don’t have computers, and for whom receiving a card means a lot to them. As you get older, you start to lose friends and family. Receiving cards during the holidays can be a wonderful comfort.


Start a couple weeks before Thanksgiving if you can. Chunk out your tasks into manageable bites as shown below. During the weeks before Thanksgiving, strive to get 2 – 4 of these tasks done.

  1. Update your address book and mailing label lists & print out the labels (I recommend using a Word Template for address labels from Avery)
  2. Print out or gather your Return Address Labels.
  3. Buy Holiday Stamps from the post office online. They are usually available by Thanksgiving. If you order early you never have to worry about your local office running out.
  4. Make sure you have the right number of cards. Buy cards right after the holidays when they are on sale.
  5. If you send out photo cards, choose your photo & get them ordered.
  6. If you send a holiday newsletter, start outlining the things you want to include.
  7. If you send pictures inside a cards, choose one and get it duplicated.
  8. Write your Newsletter first draft.

3. PUT YOUR INGREDIENTS TOGETHER & MAIL. Week 1 after Thanksgiving do the next steps. You can do most of these while watching your favorite TV programs.

  1. Put Return Address Labels on all your envelopes. Try doing 20-50 cards at a time.
  2. Put Stamps on all your envelopes.

Week 2 after Thanksgiving do the next steps.

  1. Put Recipient Address Labels on the cards
  2. Do your final edit, then print and fold your holiday Newsletters (if you have one) and put them inside the cards.
  3. Put each card with it’s stamped and addressed envelope.
  4. Divide your stamped, addressed cards into sets of 5 – 10 cards each.
  5. Write personal notes and sign your cards. Each day work on a set of cards. Get a plastic bag to carry cards with you. Anytime you have to wait somewhere, like at a doctor’s office. If you really don’t want to spend time on personal notes, you can order pre-printed cards. If you do that, you can just skip this step.
  6. Mail the set of cards.

Do a set each day or two and even if you have 100 cards, you’ll have them all personalized and sent in 7 -10 days. If you have more cards than 100, go back to Step One and Simplify. Or start a week or 2 earlier. Wishing you Happy & Healthy Holidays!

© 2006 Ariane Benefit, M.S.Ed

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Fly to Your Next Travel Destination With Cheap Endeavor Air Flights

Be it a business or a leisure trip; one can fly in Endeavor Air to around 130 destinations across the world in a well-organized fashion leading to the ultimate travel satisfaction.


One of the most significant American Regional airlines, Endeavor is the world’s largest operator of Bombardier CRJ-900 aircraft. Being a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines, Endeavor Air operates as a Delta connection to over 154 regional jets on nearly 800 daily flights to more than 130 destinations in the United States, the Caribbean, and Canada. The air carrier boasts of the world’s largest fleet of 76-seat Bombardier CRJ-900 aircraft, besides the remarkable count of 69-seat CRJ-700 and 50-seat CRJ-200 regional jets. It covers all the time zones in North America, including destinations in Canada and the Bahamas along with its Codesharing partnership with, Olympic Air, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia International, and WestJet.


One of the prominent regional airlines in the US, Endeavor Air, is headquartered in Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport, which serves as the corporate base for the airlines along with its other major hubs at New York’s LaGuardia Airport John F. Kennedy International Airport and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport.

In-flight Amenities

Endeavor flights provide world-class In-Flight Entertainment Systems which include dedicated Delta Air Lines featuring Audio-video on demand (AVOD) with a wide collection of movies to choose from, interesting games to engage and entertain travelers of all age groups, dedicated televisions loaded with Satellite live TV functionality in selected flights, in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity for those who wish to remain connected for the business or personal reasons. Passengers have the onboard purchase facility for the Non-Alcoholic Beverages and Snacks, and first class passengers can enjoy the complimentary Non-Alcoholic Beverages and Snacks. One more remarkable feature for Endeavor airlines is its approach towards supporting passengers with welcome service and emotional support animals on the domestic system and many international destinations without any cost in the cabin. Emotional support animals may accompany a passenger with a disability on a flight with prior permission and required official formality.

Web Check-in

Passengers have the facility to check-in directly to Endeavor Air flight from anywhere at their own convenience. Check-in process becomes faster and much smoother via web check-in, enabling the passenger to check in & print the boarding pass directly from their systems without waiting in the long queues in the airport. It also allows the passengers to check in their luggage in advance, selection of the desired seat, the selection of meal options and many more, before the actual departure of the flight.

With such a customer-centric approach, ensuring to offer the best possible service to its passengers, Endeavor airlines is surely one of the finest American flight service provider.

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Tips on Packing a Suitcase – The Stack Method

Packing a suitcase properly has thwarted many a traveler! But it’s not too tricky if you know the tips. The goal, as always, is to maximize space while avoiding a case full of wrinkled and unwearable clothing. Luckily there are several ways to achieve this. This article looks at the Stack Method.

1) Figure out ahead of time how much and what kind of clothing you’ll need for your trip. Clearly a week-long city break requires more than a weekend to the country. Ask yourself: What does the weather report say? Will you have laundry facilities where you’re going? It goes without saying that you won’t need hiking boots for a beach holiday or a suit at a camp site!

2) Pack only small toiletries if possible. Make sure to seal them in plastic bags to protect against spillage. If you really need bigger bottles or packages, at least make sure they are a practical shape – flat instead of round or uneven. Choose bottles with screw-on or secure caps that won’t suddenly burst open.

3) Before you begin packing, make a list. Then cut down this list by about 10% or so. It helps if you figure out your outfits beforehand, so you know if all the items are really necessary. Once you’re made sure you’re not taking too much unnecessary stuff, you’re ready to pack.

The Stack Method

1. Start with shirts, t shirt and tops. Stack them all on top of each other without folding them. Make sure the more easily wrinkled ones are at the bottom.
2. Now fold the sleeves all in together.
3. Fold the shirts in half. You should end up with a roughly rectangular shape. Because they are in a big bundle, your tops are more wrinkle-resistant and the shape means they will fit nicely into your suitcase.
4. Fold trousers and jeans individually in half and stack them again in order of wrinkliness!
5. Hold this pile in half like you did with the shirts and place your trousers rectangle into the suitcase alongside the shirts pile
6. If you have skirts and dresses, lie them down in the suitcase over the your two rectangles. Tuck the ends around the piles to save space.
7. Stuff your shoes with underwear and socks and fit them into the gaps in your suitcase.
8. Do the same with toiletries and any other possessions – but if possible, keep them towards the center to prevent excessive bumping and possible spillage.

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Discover the Best Mexico Travel Destination For You With This Game

I must say first that any Mexico spots or travel destination you choose you won’t be disappointed; this is a game/test that will help you understand where to book your next Mexico travel, based on your favourite activities, the things you like to do on vacations and the way you are.

Are you keen of legends and mysteries, archaeological sites or adventurous seeker? Are you looking for secluded spots or quiet Mexico beaches where you can play with your kids? Are you a man looking for business travel or a luxury lover? … And about lovers… Seeking the most romantic spots in Mexico for your Honeymoon vacation?

For each question, select the option that best describes your personality and discover which part of Mexico reflect yourself…

To know what Mexico travel destination is suitable for you, considerate the number of the answer corresponding to your choice, write on a paper and read the related profile below.

(Example – if you choose more answers corresponding to the number “one”, you may read the profile number “one”)

Good Luck…

Who would you like to bring with you to a Mexico Vacation?

  1. Friends
  2. My partner
  3. My Family
  4. Colleagues, Business partner
  5. Whoever wants to come
  6. Alone

Which one among these activities you prefer?

  1. Water sports
  2. Horseback Riding on the Beach
  3. Visit Theme Parks
  4. Golf
  5. Archaeological tours
  6. Bird watching, Jungle exploration

Choose among these mental image, which one you prefer?

  1. Practice Surfing, Parasailing, Kayaking, Water skiing, Diving, Snorkelling, or Fishing and get ready for the exciting Nightlife
  2. Assist to romantic sunsets, dining on the beach with fresh lobster, great hotel suites with all the amenities…
  3. Play with the kids on a quiet beach and bring them in a theme park
  4. Lay down and relax all day on a deck chair by the pool or the Sea, sipping a colourful cocktail, and receive a wonderful massage on the beach
  5. Refresh under a waterfall, after a long walk in the forest, admiring the nature
  6. Move the branch of a tree and have ancient ruins in front of you, or visit museums, colonial cities and discover the history of Mexico

Which one, among the Spanish words below, does inspire you the most?

  1. Fiestas
  2. Me Amor
  3. Olè
  4. Gracias
  5. Maravilloso
  6. Chido

Choose among this characters

  1. Pancho Villa
  2. Zorro
  3. Speedy Gonzalez
  4. Zapata
  5. Pakal
  6. Stephens or Caterwood

Which among the following contrasts of colours you prefer?

  1. Turquoise Blue – Yellow
  2. Orange – Red
  3. All colours
  4. Black – White
  5. Red – Green
  6. Green – Blue china

Choose the transportation you like the most

  1. Motorbike
  2. Car
  3. Bicycle
  4. Airplane
  5. Train
  6. By walk

Profiles and Mexico Travel Destinations….

  1. Energy Vacations – You are young (not necessarily of age), dynamic and athletics, with an unbelievable desire to enjoy minute after minute your Mexico Vacations! The Sea and the nightlife should be an important element for your holidays.
    The best Mexico spots for your vacation are:

    Cancun, Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen, Acapulco, Los Cabos, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta

  2. Romantic Spots – “An eternal dreamer, a lover of love..” If what you are looking for is a place where create unforgettable memories with your beloved, sipping tasteful cocktails while snuggling him/her, watching a wonderful sunset, or walking hand in hand on calm and pristine beaches … the most Romantic Mexico destinations any time of the year are:
    Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo, Huatulco, Puerto Escondido, Riviera Maya, Tulum, Costa Alegre, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos , Isla Mujeres, Hol Box (secluded)
  3. Mexico Family Vacations – It is not always easy to choose the destination for your family travel. You may consider the needs of your children and pick a place which allows fun together in a safe and refreshing environment. … but don’t forget that this are also yours vacations! Much thought and preparation has gone into developing the Mexico attractions that will be of interest to family members of all ages , because is important to understand that amusing moments during your Mexico Family Vacation give the energy to continue to love and to conquer day after day the trust of your kids. We suggest to consider the following Mexico travel destination for you and your family:

    Riviera Maya, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Acapulco, Huatulco, Mexico City, Manzanillo, Puerto Vallarta, Cozumel

  4. Relaxing, Business and Luxury Travel – We live in a jet-fueled world where relaxation is a luxury! Life isn’t just about stress and job, sometimes must be enjoyed! Do you have an important conference and you are looking for the best environment and luxury hotels?! Does it tickle you the idea of some body treatments in a Spa on the beach?

    These are the best destinations that can offer you all of this:

    Playa del Carmen, Mexico City, Riviera Maya, Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, Monterrey, Costa Alegre, Los Cabos

  5. Eco Adventures and Natural Vacations – In Mexico you can feel the love for nature and wildlife with its spectacular landscapes, fascinating mix of high mountains, unlimited beaches, vast rainforests, incredible variety of amazing animals of all kind of colours and shapes, volcanoes, cenotes, waterfalls, unique and rare species of plants, but mostly amazing tours for discover all of this… So, if you like the Mother Nature there is no better place! The ideal Mexico Spots for you are:

    Chiapas, Aguascalientes, Morelia Michoacan, Villahermosa, Oaxaca, Puerto Escondido, Copper Canyon, Riviera Maya, Los Cabos, Cozumel, HolBox, Chihuahua

  6. Historical Mexico Travel – Keen of culture, history and curious for other people way of life, and an artist inside… Staying with you it’s always a pleasure and that’s why we recommend you some historical Mexico spots. The history of Mexico speaks of a country full of civilizations and changes. The emotion given by marvelous archaeological sites ( indelible memory of pre-Columbian civilizations, wounded in the jungle), colonial cities, museums full of every kind of memories of past epochs, it’s something you can’t miss! I believe that everywhere you go in Mexico has interesting things to see.. Here, you will never feel alone …

    Book your Mexico vacation in : Merida Yucatan, Mexico City, Chiapas, Palenque, Riviera Maya, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, La Paz, Queretaro, Villahermosa, Taxco

Mexico is a country with a variety of landscapes, changing from snow-capped volcanoes and lush jungles to ancient Mayan ruins and golden beaches. Tourists can enjoy everything from swimming with dolphins to cultural events. With jungles in the south, deserts in the north, stretches of beach along the Pacific and Caribbean shorelines and magnificent mountainous regions in Central Mexico, history and traditions at every corner, it’s obvious why Mexico is one of the most versatile vacation destinations of the entire World!

Enjoy as much as you can during your Mexico Vacation.

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5 Holiday Weight Loss Tips & Their Reality Checks

Do you find it almost impossible to stay conscious and contentious about weight and nutrition during the holidays? Of course you do. More than half of all Americans are overweight: You’re not alone.

A new government study might give you a ray of hope though: The study shows that Americans gain only about one pound over the holidays. The study found that people participating were influenced by two main factors over the holidays: The level of their hunger, and the level of their activity. In other words: Those who reported being less active or more hungry during the holidays had the greatest weight gain.

So common sense says: If you can stay focused on dealing with just those two things, you’ll probably win your personal holiday weight loss battle. At the very least, you’ll win by not adding more weight to what’s already waiting to be shed.

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of weight gain,” says Dr. Samuel Klein, the Director of the Center for Human Nutrition at Washington University in St. Louis, MO. “Preventing the increase in weight is a lot easier and better than actually gaining weight and then trying to get it off again.”

So the answer seems simple: Eat less and exercise more. The reality of implementation of course, is far more difficult.

The good news is that most of the people overestimate how much weight they’d gained over the holidays. Fewer than 10% gain 5 pounds or more.

The bad news is: The small amount of weight gained is never lost. One pound of weight gain is quite a small amount, but since it’s not usually lost again: The weight adds up over time – to obesity.

Now we all know there are tons of tips out and about this time of year, designed to help us keep from putting on that extra pound or two during the holidays. Unfortunately what’s usually not talked about is: The reality of day-to-day holiday stress and situations. Let’s explore the tips… along with their reality checks… in depth:

Weight Loss Tip 1: Stay active. The best thing you can do is try to stick to your normal schedule and routine.

Holiday Reality Check: It’s pretty hard to have any kind of decent routine in the busy months of November and December. Busy people tend to sacrifice yoga classes, long walks, and visits to the gym because they need time for extra things like decorating the house, cooking, cleaning up before the visitors get there, and of course: Shopping.

The Good News: Walking around the shopping mall and stores is great exercise, and so is cleaning the house. In addition to those activities, decorating can be quite intensive too: You’re climbing up and down to hang things; lifting, lugging, and dragging boxes out of storage; bending, twisting and turning to get it all looking just right. So don’t beat yourself up about not making it to the gym… you’re getting plenty of activity and every little bit helps!

Weight Loss Tip 2: Don’t let yourself get too hungry. If you go to a party and you’re starving, everything will look even more scrumptious than normal. And of course, you’ll eat much more because of it. Try starting each day with a good, solid breakfast – particularly something with protein. And when you’re at the party, try munching on the veggies to help keep you feeling full. These two things will help your hunger stay under control, and will in turn help you refrain from “gorging” on anything you see just because you’re famished.

Holiday Reality Check: We’re all very busy during the holidays, and it’s not always possible to remember to eat – let alone eat well – particularly in the morning when we may have already overslept and are now running late for everything. And eating healthy at a party isn’t always possible either: Not everyone in this country serves vegetable plates, salads, or fruit bowls. Sometimes the only things in site are junk: Chips, candy, and cookies.

Here’s a suggestion: Try taking your own veggie plate to a party where you know there won’t be one available. A quick and easy way to do this is simply buy a bag or two of pre-cut veggies and some ranch salad dressing. Alternatively, eat a decent meal before you go to the party. Don’t overdo things, but don’t make it a light snack either. Eating first will help you to just “nibble” a bit on the worst of the holiday treats offered.

Weight Loss Tip 3: Stay away from the food. Literally. Just don’t go anywhere near the buffet table, appetizers, or treats… and you’ll be fine.

Holiday Reality Check: In most cases, the food is everywhere. And even if it’s not right in front of your face, you sure can smell it! Trying to just “stay away from it” is pretty unrealistic – and it can feel like torture for some of us. And for most people: When you can’t have something, you want it even more. So trying to stay away from the food will most likely just make you overindulge worse than you would have otherwise.

Try this instead: Allow yourself whatever you’d like. But with a catch. First: Take only half the amount you normally would. And take just one food item. Eat that and enjoy it without guilt. Then, wait a full 20-30 minutes before you get something else. Then repeat the process: One item, half the portion size as you normally would, enjoy it without guilt, then wait before getting something else.

Allowing yourself to eat gets rid of the mentality of “I can’t have it (and thus I’m more determined to have it)” It lets you enjoy the good food and the holidays, without beating yourself up. This is healthy and can help tremendously with the way you view food and eating in general. Only taking half of it though, will help you not take in as much calories, fat, sugar or other bad stuff you usually avoid. And then waiting 20-30 minutes before you get something else will help your body realize when it’s had enough… or too much. So you’re much less likely to overdo things, and feel horrible physically later.

Weight Loss Tip 4: Wear cloths that are slightly tight on you. This should help you feel full faster, and keep you from eating too much food.

Holiday Reality Check: We want to wear looser cloths because we’re looking forward to eating all that great food! Yes, wearing something tight might help us not go back for a second helping of potatoes… or it might ruin a favorite outfit.

In the end, how you approach this tip is up to you, and you alone. Make your decision and be happy with it.

Weight Loss Tip 5: Keep your portions small. Try to load up on salad and vegetables, and take just tiny amounts of anything else.

Holiday Reality Check: Taking just a “bite sized” amount of anything is going to put you into the have-not mental state mentioned earlier. You’ll feel as if you can’t have something, and you’ll want it all the more.

Try the tip noted above instead: Take half the size you normally would. Trying to have just a little bite of pie will whet your appetite for more, but having a whole piece is going a bit overboard – particularly if there’s 5 different pies for you to sample. So try actual sampling instead: Cut a piece half the normal size. This allows you to have a “whole slice”, and more than several little bites. Then wait about 20 minutes before you go and try the next pie. Even if you end up eating a bit of all 5 pies, by having a half-sized slice of each, you’ve drastically cut the amount of calories, carbs and sugars compared to what you would have had with whole slices. And you’ll still feel stuffed and satiated, instead of deprived and resentful.

So there you have it: 5 different, common holiday weight loss and eating tips, followed by the reality check of each, and a suggested compromise that should help you enjoy the holidays to their fullest, without depriving yourself of the great food we all look forward to.

Whatever you decide to do, remember to actually have Happy Holidays!

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Destination Wedding Dos and Don’ts

Destination weddings are so much fun, and they are more popular than ever. There are some things about planning a wedding in an exotic land that might be different than planning a wedding near your home. To get the most out of your destination wedding, try these simple tips:

  • Book a site that also will make a dream honeymoon spot for you and your spouse. Having your wedding and honeymoon all in one place is called a “weddingmoon”, and many resorts will offer special packages if you choose to do this.
  • Arrive at your destination a few days before the ceremony. This will give you time to check up on the details of your wedding, as well as allowing time for any travel delays or late luggage. Having a few extra days will help keep the stress to a minimum, so that you are relaxed and ready for your big day.
  • Send out save the date cards well in advance of a destination wedding (6 months or more). Since everyone will be traveling, it will allow them plenty of time to schedule the days off from work, book the flights, and make hotel arrangements. If you have relatives or friends who you would like to invite, but that you believe will not be able to make the trip, go ahead and invite them anyway. It is always nice to be asked, and who knows, they might surprise you by coming.
  • Dress appropriately for your wedding destination. If your wedding will be held on the beach at sunset, this could mean a romantic and flowing gown with handcrafted bridal jewelry. A simple dress always looks better on the beach than a big formal one, and the handcrafted bridal jewelry will give your ensemble a beautiful, yet relaxed flavor.
  • Let go of elements that are not suitable for the site that you have chosen. This might mean having a cake with fondant frosting, even though you had your heart set on buttercream (which is notorious for melting in hot weather). It could mean that you take the planner’s advice and schedule your ceremony for the late afternoon instead of sunset because the area gets too buggy at dusk. Whatever it may be, accept that some of your pre-conceived ideas may not be feasible. That is okay, though, because a special destination will have many other wonderful things about it.
  • Buy travel and event insurance if you are planning a tropical wedding during hurricane season.
  • Don’t let the ladies in the straw market convince you (or worse, your groom!) to braid your hair the day before your wedding. Remember that you have to live with those pictures forever. If you feel like getting swept away in the island spirit, get a few braids the day after the wedding. (And grooms, just say no on any day, please!)
  • Serve seasonal and local food, as recommended by your venue’s wedding coordinator. Part of the fun of going on a trip is exploring their culture. Don’t get hung up on what you think every reception must have, whether it is steak or pigs-in-a-blanket. Be open to trying the local delicacies.
  • Be prepared to let go of some of the control of the wedding planning. Any time that you are planning a wedding by long distance, it is necessary to trust someone at your site to handle many of the details for you. If you surrender to the process, you may actually find preparing for your wedding to be fairly relaxing. The good news is that most resorts will have on-site coordinators, so you will know that you are in good hands.

There is a great spirit of celebration present at most destination weddings. Not only is it a joyous occasion, but everyone is also on vacation. The most important thing to remember is to relax and have fun on your special day.

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Health Hints for Hectic Holidays

The holidays sure to have a way of getting us off track, don’t they? Maintaining a routine through the holiday season is difficult for even a “professional planner” and for those with diet “resolve of steel” – so don’t get down on your self for a momentary indiscretion or two. It’s important that we “Modern Moms” resign ourselves to doing what we can, when we can in the context of our overriding priorities – and make it OK emotionally. Meaning, give yourself “permission” rather than guilt for doing what you know is right, such as spending your very limited, but quality time with your child(ren) after a long work day.

It’s important to figure out what CAN be done to stay on track during decidedly hectic times like this, and make the most of these opportunities since they are overcompensating for a lack of effort elsewhere (due to minimal time and energy).

Here are a few of the things that even the busiest Modern Mom “should” be able to do during the hectic holidays, even with a busy work, travel, family and all things holiday schedule, some courtesy of eDiets’ nutrition experts:


o Eat “clean”. Yes, I KNOW those dog-gone holiday baskets are everywhere (especially in the workplace), but with a lessened fitness regime your health-seeking/weight-loss efforts will depend on your ability to keep your calorie intake to reasonable levels. Chewing a mint flavored gum (which will make chocolate and other things not taste as good) or sucking on hard sugar free candy can help you resist those temptations. Or, enjoy a mug of sugar/fat free hot chocolate or a low-fat oatmeal and fruit cereal bar at your desk, instead! Don’t just deprive yourself – make some kind of reasonable trade!! Again, you just need to plan ahead and have your emergency foods readily available. If you make only one list per week, make it a healthy grocery list and stick to it!

o Eat small, healthy meals every 2.5-3 hours or so rather than just a few large meals. Doing so will keep you sated throughout the day so that you’re not ravenous at mealtime, which may cause you to overeat or eat calorie-laden foods, and will keep your metabolism humming. And, be sure NOT to skip meals because you’re so busy. While you think you’re saving on the calories and don’t mind, you’re actually slowing down your metabolism, which has to “stretch” the energy derived from your last meal over a longer period of time. If your body comes to “expect” new fuel sources more often, it’ll burn off what it gets quicker.

o Drink your water – and lots of it!! (no matter how many trips to the ladies room it will require) Your body is made up primarily of water and while water does not have calories to provide energy, it contributes to weight loss and assisting your digestive system. Ample water will keep the toxins flowing right out of your body.

o Enjoy heart healthy “winter” foods: Soups are great… convenient, healthy and delicious. Make a fresh vegetable soup with all your favorite root vegetables…sauté in a nonstick pot onions and garlic, then add water or low sodium canned vegetable broth, chunked potato, celery root and carrots. Season with dried herbs and pepper, and enjoy as a meal with some whole grain bread, or as a snack. Stews can be made with healthy root vegetables and lean meat. The secret to a healthy stew is not adding fat to the food! Braise the meat without added fat in a nonstick skillet, drain off the fat, and slow cook with carrots, onions and garlic. And, citrus fruits are at their peak in the winter! Florida oranges and grapefruit are best enjoyed peeled…the fiber in the whole fruit is the most beneficial. Remember, it takes at least 5 oranges to make an 8 ounce glass of orange juice…and you wouldn’t peel and eat 5 oranges in one sitting…you’d be full after one or two! So, enjoy your citrus fruit…whole.

o Just before going to any holiday party, eat an apple with a full glass of water so that the fiber will keep your appetite at bay. Go ahead and “sample” the party fare if you can’t seem to resist – it’s OK to allow yourself a “reasonably” sized treat once in a while, particularly in a celebratory fashion. As long as you can enjoy the modest-sized treat while maintaining complete control, you can immediately get your mindset back into “diet mode”, enjoy the event, and not feel completely deprived. Otherwise, keep a glass in your hand. If you’re holding a glass, it’s more difficult to hold a plate and eat! Take a plate of food to begin with, enjoy it, and then keep a glass in your hand for the rest of the event. And finally, don’t stand around the food table–take the foods you want and leave the area immediately!


o With your harried schedule, do what you can with the advice below during Monday-Friday, and resolve to working out for at least one hour on both Saturday and Sunday. No excuses here…if you’re skipping your workouts during the week, you need to get them in on the weekend. Optimally, you would also find a happy medium during the week, such as getting up early on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s also for a morning walk (at least).

o Try isometric exercises. These are great if you’re pressed for time or stuck in line at the supermarket. Just by flexing a few times each day, you can maintain a significant amount of muscle tightness. Simply flex those muscles whenever you are sitting in your car, standing at the bus stop or walking to the boss’s office. For example, while stuck in traffic, tighten your abdominals and hold for 60 seconds, but remember to keep breathing through your nostrils. Maybe you’re waiting in line to checking out at a store.

o Take advantage of any opportunity to exercise and engage in healthy behaviors during your workday. Here are some ideas:

o Stretch! Every hour do some arm-chair exercise. While sitting, bend over in your chair and let your arms hang down…then sit up and take five deep and slow breaths…in through your nose, and out through your mouth.

o Crunch! Every hour, do 12 “rear-end crunches”…while sitting, tighten your buttocks muscles and hold for 10 seconds. Start with 3 repetitions, and work up to 5 or more.

o Focus on your posture – While seated at your desk, consciously focus on sitting tall with your neck relaxed, shoulders back, lengthened spine, feet on the floor and abdominals tight. Maintaining good posture involves most of the muscles in your body and keeping your body in good alignment will help to retrain your muscle groups all day long. Besides practicing good posture can make you look 10 pounds lighter.

o Take 10 minute breaks every hour – Studies have shown that employees are much more satisfied and productive if they take 10 minute breaks every hour. Use that time to get up, stretch, go for a brisk walk, or do some deep breathing. Oxygenating your muscles and getting the blood pumping will keep you more alert, manage stress and help to give your metabolism a boost. Three ten minute sessions are as good as one thirty minute continuous one.

The bottom line is that there will be obstacles to achieving and maintaining your desired body weight – You may encounter a plateau or unexpected life event that may thow you off track. Remember that this is all part of the process, and while you may wander temporarily you CAN get back on track the very next day!

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Happiness Is The Destination, Sadness Is A Vain And Futile Pursuit

When I say that “We all love to win, but who loves to train?”, what do I mean? I mean happiness and enjoyment throughout the whole process is the destination, and sadness in any of it is never desired. Happiness does not mean total play or total work, it means enjoying the process as well as the result, that is it.

Being a staunch and strict objectivist philosopher with a psychological emphasis on full epistemological understanding of what life is, I can say and mean this: It is as simple as what I said above, but if you want to read more into it, here goes.

Reality is a rational step by step process, not something you cheat and take short cuts at which means that you enjoy the process as well as the result in every way that counts, and discard the unnecessary. Logically, I could end here, but I will explain myself more: The necessary is what gets results, the unnecessary is that which does not get good results. That simple, that succinct. Realistically, there should be gray areas in my thinking about this point, but there are not. This is where I get rid of all mysticism, I do what works and get rid of what does not systematically and efficiently when needed. For, like I said in the title, actively pursuing sadness until “rock bottom” or worse is always a vain pursuit.

Happiness is a result, and happiness during a process genuinely gets results. Have you ever heard of anyone being happy with inefficiency and not getting things done in their favor? Only in the extreme bureaucratic mentality have you heard of that “phenomena” or reality. Everyone, and everything naturally moves toward completion and betterment. To short hand the term, everybody loves a winner, nobody loves a loser. That is just realistic human nature. The only person who does not really want to succeed is one who is doing something genuinely wrong, and destructive. Indeed, destruction does not lead to happiness, especially initiated criminal destruction without any reason or reality to it except for the sake of destruction without reason or regard for reality. So, I will put it in a reality that cannot be argued really. Everyone wants a happy process as well as a great result, everything else can be discarded as unwanted. This is where happiness is the genuine and real destination and sadness is the vain pursuit. What is, is, sure. But what is good, must be achieved then preserved as a process and result.

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Orlando Christmas Vacation 2014: Need to Know Tips

Holiday traditions and Merry festivities transform Orlando into the perfect winter vacation destination. Whether you’re planning to celebrate at the theme parks or prefer a more low-key holiday event, Orlando is sure to entertain the whole family.

Read on to discover valuable “Need to Know” tips to guarantee a great Orlando Holiday Vacation without any unexpected surprises.

Orlando Events

The Holidays bring the biggest cheer to Orlando, check out all of the exciting events happening this Christmas. Plan ahead by learning more about each event:

Macy’s Holiday Parade at Universal Studios: Colorful balloons and floats from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade® in New York City flood the streets along with marching bands and Santa Claus.

SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration: Waves of holiday spirit fill the park with holiday celebrations alongside Shamu.

Holidays around the World at Disney’s Epcot: Sing along to the candlelight processional with a presentation of the traditional Christmas story told by celebrity narrators.

Grinchmas™ at Universal’s Islands of Adventure: Suess landing is transformed into a whimsical world of Grinchmas™, featuring a live show starring The Grinch™.

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party: Play in snow flurries while you watch the spectacular fireworks and a jolly holiday parade.

Chistmas Bricktacular at LEGOLAND: Kids will enjoy a 270,000 brick Christmas tree and festive decorations, as well as daily appearances by Santa Claus.

Orlando Theme park Crowds

As far as crowd levels go, December is divided. The first half of the month sees low to neutral crowd levels, and the second half of the month sees the highest crowds of the entire year!

Orlando Holiday Weather

Orlando Winter Weather Forecast: This winter expect temperatures to be between the 60’s and 70’s. Our usual coldest month of the year is January, but with average lows only reaching 50 degrees – we certainly can’t call ourselves a snow skiing destination. While you can most likely leave the heavy winter jackets at home, it does get cool enough for people to pull on the light and medium jackets. If you are trying to pack light, bring clothes that can be easily layered.

Orlando Travel Tips

Although we can’t help you out with a plane ticket- we do have a few tips to keep in mind: book early, be flexible with your dates, and be persistent. Travelers have 24hours to release their seat, which means that flight you thought was sold out, could possibly have an open seat tomorrow. Lastly, reports show that flying on the actual holiday tends to be the cheapest way to go.

Orlando Hotel Tips

Look for hotels with a variety of Christmas activities when traveling with your children. This will give you a chance to create unique memories during your vacation. Check out our exclusive Holiday Shopping Spree package only at Floridays Resort! This family-friendly condo-style resort offers activities and events daily. Visit our website at

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How To Pick A Vacation Destination For Your Blended Family

Choosing vacation destinations, in general, can be quite the hassle. When you have to factor in specific vacation days, flight & hotel information, not to mention reservations of any kind at the vacation site, there is a reason why you hear the adage, “I need a vacation from my vacation.” Nowadays, there is one more particular element to factor in that perhaps is the most sensitive of topics — the blended family.

It can be traumatic enough for a family to deal with the dissolution of a marriage & an end to the family you’ve come to know, but it can be even tougher to become part of someone else’s family all because your parent met another parent who has kids of their own. Though the idea of the blended family is sitcom gold because of the general mismatches & hijinks, the notion of just becoming someone’s new nuclear family member is not a simple matter.

How, then, do you pick a place for everyone to go on vacation? There are a lot feelings to take into consideration. ‘Mom and Dad’ might want to do something fun, exciting, and even a little romantic, but that may not be great for the kids. What about vacation traditions from the previous family unit? Those may be some of the things kids will attach themselves to for a sense of normalcy. The new siblings may also find it hard to spend time with each other & may even have resentment toward one another.

It is for these reasons, and many others, that family counselors agree it is important for any vacation planning to readily involve the kids. See what each one wants out of the vacation. Any activities that seem cool? Is there a type of food they’d like to try? Give the kids some ownership of the trip, and let them know they matter. At the same time, though, it’s important to maintain a sense of accountability with this ownership. You want the kids to feel at ease with all of this change, but you don’t want them to run the show.

One final key item that is an absolute must is the need to establish new traditions. Everyone in your new blended family still remembers life as it was before. While it is still important to maintain a sense of stability through those old ways, it is important to make new memories & traditions with the new family. Once again, have the kids chime in a little about what they think would be a neat idea. Maybe something like “Silly Selfie Sunday Seafood” would be a great way to break the ice & realize that what’s new isn’t such a bad thing.

For the blended family, vacation destinations hold a sense of the unknown & perhaps the unwanted. With the right approach, though, your new family may find just the right way to open their hearts to new possibilities.

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3 Tips to Finding a Beautiful Vacation Home in Your Budget

Spending time in a comfortable holiday home can be extremely relaxing and refreshing. Moreover, if you can stay at a beautiful vacation home without overstretching your budget, there is nothing like it. This article explains how you can achieve a harmonious balance between the two. Follow these three simple tips to get your dream holiday home within your budget.

Do your research

Research is very important if you want to get a beautiful vacation house within budget. Since actually going out into the field and doing a survey from the ground up would take a lot of time, the Internet is a good place to start. You will find several tourist sites, social media pages and discussion blogs where tourists review and rate various aspects of their holiday homes. This will give you a fair idea of which features of a vacation home appeal the most to visitors. In this way, you will know which aspects of the house should be high on your priority list. You will also get to know the areas and neighborhoods where the most beautiful homes are available.

The research will also show various agents and property knowledgeable dealers with insight into the market and know whom you can approach with your query.

Trial the vacation house first

At first glance, every house will look like the perfect investment. However, do not get fooled. Photographers and editors work meticulously by choosing camera angles, lighting and even photo editing tools when publishing photographs of holiday homes in travel magazines and brochures. Take the sensible route and visit the house several times before settling on it. The house should be comfortable and exciting enough to make you want to visit the place regularly and to commit to it long-term. Remember that once you have made the investment, it will be difficult to offload the property, and you may not have the time to do that. Make sure that you are comfortable with the location, amenities, neighborhood, scenery, and structure of the house before making the purchase.

New houses last longer

The design of vacation houses is to be beautiful and aesthetic. However, not all of this beauty comes without effort. A lot of effort goes into the upkeep and maintenance of the house. If you want to avoid this hassle, in the end, opt for a newer property since an older house will pose more frequent maintenance issues.

Moreover, if you plan to rent out your property, you will need to make frequent repairs and upgrades to keep your property hot on the property market. This involves making plumbing and electrical repairs, upgrading the fittings, landscaping the lawns, and regular maintenance. Be prepared to invest the time and money into this effort to continue to enjoy the benefits of your holiday home.

A beautiful vacation home comes with its own set of expenses but does not necessarily have to cost an arm and a leg. Being ready with the correct information and realistic expectations, you can certainly find the holiday home for the price you are willing to pay.

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What Is a Great Destination for Intermediate Skiing? A Perfect "10": On-Piste, Off the Beaten Path

Living too far south for much snow and working too many hours to get away often, I am an “Intermittent Intermediate” with no hope of improving. The greatest challenge is finding a destination that is hard enough to be interesting but still easy enough to ski down when I am traveling solo. Since classifying a run’s level of difficulty varies from mountain to mountain, too often I find it doesn’t work for me. Especially surprising was the difference between skiing Lake Tahoe’s Heavenly Valley and Sun Valley or Big Sky. In the US Northwest where Intermediate slopes looked like the Matterhorn, I had to go to Plan B: counting bison at Yellowstone. After such near misses, I developed a personal checklist for finding the best destinations for Intermediate skiing:

  1. Number and type of slopes designated as Intermediate
  2. Snow quality and typical conditions
  3. Apres-ski activity/restaurants and nearby lodging
  4. Affordability/Attractive pricing
  5. Convenient access to airports
  6. Friendly environment
  7. Interesting location/different but workable
  8. Ski instruction availability/timing
  9. Weather/temperature on the mountain
  10. Proximity to a Plan B/alternative sightseeing

Preferring the road less traveled by, I sampled an active volcano, New Zealand’s Ruapehu/Whakapapa. Living North of the Equator, I was especially excited about skiing in our summer. In addition, with the North Island’s mild climate, I was able to go white water rafting one day and skiing this active volcano the next day. On later trips to other slopes, sporting a sweater with a Kiwi on skis was a great icebreaker.

On to Hafjel, Norway which had all the right advantages even traveling alone. The snow was fantastic although it was 50 degrees Fahrenheit at the base. Ski instruction was great and classes friendly. The price was right and a local bus ferried skiers throughout the day from Lillehammer. Better yet, sending postcards back home from that Olympic venue gave my skiing ability an undeserved boost I could dine out on for the rest of the year. If only my luggage had arrived when I did, it would have been perfect.

Still struggling at times to keep up with better skiers, I finally hit pay dirt. I found the perfect “10” skiing in Andorra. I was immediately excited about seeing a new country, albeit a rather small one, based in the Pyrenees. The mix of four languages, Spanish, Catalan, French and English, made it feel exotic but still easy to get by. Ski lessons were very helpful with a small group of well-matched Intermediates. It was a really friendly atmosphere with part of the class practising English and the others Spanish. After lunch, a Dutch classmate and I took the afternoon working to perfect our parallel turns.

Every day the sunshine was brilliant. Even at lower elevations, there was no ice. The local villages provided multiple après-ski and dinner options at a good price. Lastly, the access was easy flying in to Barcelona. The February weather in Northeast Spain was temperate not unlike California. That made it an ideal way to combine an active, outdoor trip with a cultural one viewing Gaudi’s stunning architecture.

If I can’t get a perfect “10”, I opt for finding a destination off the beaten track. Whatever the ski conditions, I can always relish the adventure and have the pictures to prove it.

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