Oct 21, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Algarve, Portugal

The Algarve is the southernmost region of Portugal, on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. The Algarve is Portugal’s most popular holiday destination due to the clean beaches (approximately 200 km of them), the cool, unpolluted water, and the facts that it is relatively cheap, very safe and overall welcoming. English is spoken at most resorts. The Algarve is rich in culture and diversity. If you are looking for fast paced resorts or a calm tranquil setting either is attainable. The entire region is graced with over 100 different beaches. If you are into nature the choices are many from the Ria Formosa to Monchique mountain, from Caldeirão mountains to Sagres cape, in fact there are over 30 hiking trails.

We recommend you visit places like:
Lagos - The old inner city inside the remnants of a protective wall. You’ll find winding streets barely wide enough for small cars, quaint shops and wonderful restaurants.
Silves - The red stone castle. The road there is narrow and winds through some rural areas, but it is definitely worth a half day trip if you like castles.

We also suggest you try out the Medronho, a traditional fruit brandy, traditionally produced and drunk in The Algarve. Medronho can be fiercely potent and is available in variations ranging from unlabelled local homebrew bottles, moonshine style, to connoisseur tipples at more of a premium price range.

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Oct 20, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Cala Dogana, Levanzo

Levanzo is the smallest of the three main Aegadian Islands in the Mediterranean Sea west of Sicily, Italy. It forms a part of the municipality of Favignana in the Province of Trapani. The only town on Levanzo is Cala Dogana which is mainly centered around a tiny port, that gives little shelter from storms. While in Levanzo, you will surely see Cave paintings at Grotta del Genovese which are about 10,000 years old. It is also a heaven for nature-lovers and those who enjoy peace and serenity. There is only one road which bisects the island from north to south. A lot of people also take a chance for hiking along south western coast.

The northern part of the island consists of a succession of sheer drops, rocky outcrops and secluded little creeks, while in the south is the tiny hamlet of Cala Dogana which overlooks a bay of the clearest water on the south side of the island. From here, a path winds its way to the bays and tiny pebbled beaches that open out along the south western coast. This unique residential area of the Levanzo island is made up of white cubic houses set out in tiered rows in the indent of an inlet bathed in crystalline water. A path departing from the village takes you to the inlets of the Southwest coast up as far as a rock called the Faraglione. This is one of the most romantic places you will see.

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Oct 19, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Zermatt, Switzerland

Zermatt is a car-free village in the upper Valais, one of the alpine cantons of Switzerland. It’s probably best known as a platform for skiing and mountaineering, especially on the mountain which towers above the village, the Matterhorn.

You can have plenty adventures here. The “Breithorn” (4150 m) is the easiest 4000er of the Alps. Using the lifts “Furri” (1700 m), “Trockener Steg”(2800 m), “kleines Matterhorn” (3883 m) you reach the top of the little Matterhorn. Go down to the “Theodul-Gletscher” and follow the trail to left on the Breithorn. The top of the Breithorn can be reached after 2 h walking (no climbing!). A rope is necessary and a mountain guide is recommended. You should not start the tour from the little Matterhorn after 10:00 in the morning, because the snow gets too weak and you will not reach the last lift down to Zermatt in time.
The “Matterhorn” (4478 m) can be climbed by experienced mountaineers. The usual pattern of ascent is to take the Schwarzsee cable car up from Zermatt, hike up to the Hörnli Hut elev. 3,260 m (10,700 ft), a large stone building at the base of the main ridge, and spend the night. The next day, climbers rise at 3:30 am so as to reach the summit and descend before the regular afternoon clouds and storms come in.

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Oct 18, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Waimea Canyon, Kauai

This canyon is also known as Grand Canyon of the Pacific and it is located on the western side of Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands of the United States. This is a truly beautiful destination not only for looking, but for thinking. The canyon was formed by a deep incision of the Waimea River arising from the extreme rainfall on the island’s central peak, Mount Wai’ale’ale, among the wettest places on earth. The lavas of the canyon provide evidence for massive faulting and collapse in the early history of the island.

Waimea Canyon is enormous and full of excitement, get lost in the verdancy. The main road, Waimea Canyon Drive, leads you to a lower lookout point and the main Waimea Canyon Overlook, offering views of Kauai’s dramatic interior. The road continues into the mountains and ends at Kokee State Park. There are numerous trails to traverse for beginners and seasoned hikers. Adventurous people will be most amazed by this place, while other people will also feel a connection with this place. As we all have our stories, nature has its own also, so come and feel it with all your senses.

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Oct 17, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Brussels, Belgium

Brussels is the capital city of Belgium and of Brussels Capital Region. Plenty of things you can see here like:
Grand Place, surrounded by the city tower and a range of beautiful 300 year old buildings. In the evening, surrounded by bright lumination, it is simply ravishing. Some evenings a music and light show is provided with the buildings serving as a canvas. Just a short walk from the Grand Place-Grote Markt is the Manneken Pis, a small bronze statue thought to represent the “irreverent spirit” of Brussels. This statue of a child performing one of Nature’s most basic functions. Belgians have created hundreds of outfits for this statue.

Definitely check out the Arc de Triomphe-Triomfboog on the east side of town. It’s in the Parc du Cinquantenaire-Jubelpark. It is possible to go up to the terrasse above the arch, from where you’ll have a good view of the city. Entry is through the Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and of Military History and is free.

Don’t forget the Atomium, an unavoidable icon of Brussels and Belgium, important place for international tourism, unique creation in the history of architecture.

Definitely a lovely city, and you won’t regret visiting it.

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Oct 16, 2012 - Experiences    Comments Off

Hang of Toronto’s CN Tower (Edgewalk)

At 1,814 feet tall, Toronto’s CN Tower held the record of tallest building in the world for more than three decades, until it was surpassed by the Burj Khalifa a few years ago. It attracts more than 2 million visitors every year, many of whom climb to the observation deck and risk severe vertigo by peering down through a glass floor to the ground. But if you think that takes guts, you’re not ready for the CN Tower’s new challenge: walking on a ledge 1,168 feet above the ground and hanging out into empty space.

This will scare the hell out of you, but it is worth it. EdgeWalk is CN Tower’s most thrilling attraction in its 35 year history, and the first of its kind in North America. It is the world’s highest full circle hands-free walk on a 5 ft (1.5 m) wide ledge encircling the top of the Tower’s main pod, 356m/1168ft (116 storeys) above the ground. Visitors walk in groups of six, while attached to an overhead safety rail via a trolley and harness system. Trained EdgeWalk guides will encourage participants to push their personal limits, allowing them to lean back over Toronto with nothing but air and breathtaking views of Lake Ontario beneath them.
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Oct 15, 2012 - Hotels    Comments Off

Hotel La Montaña Mágica in Hulio, Chile

As you can see, this is nothing less than a hotel that is build like a volcano-waterfall starting from the top and representing life. It is really creatively designed and breathtaking when you are standing in front of it. It is a lodge built with quality material by craftsmen of surrounding communities and Puerto Fuy Neltume, small wood-based mountain villages. La Montana Magica is located in the middle of a 120,000 hectares native forest (a UNESCO biosphere reserve). The water in these places has great purity, and from the idea, of showing the energy and life of this element, was born the project of a mountain, from which comes the life and contains the magic of the forest, finding in each of its details, the beings and elements that are unique and irreplaceable, what came to life the native forests.

The greatest luxuries, however, come from the remote natural reserve surrounding the lodge, where you can find virgin beaches, explore rivers and lagoons and discover all types of birds and fauna. As for activities, the reserve offers skiing and snowboarding in the winter, there’s a Hot Spring Lake in the middle of Lake Pirehueico which is linked by bridges and filled with thermal water, a trip to the Huilo Huilo waterfalls, and hike along the Deer Trail where you’ll find a deer farm and a boar farm. Additional activities include horseback riding, canopy tours (including the longest zip line in South America), sailing and kayaking, fly fishing, mountain biking and more.

Lodge service provides you with: - Playrooms for children - Mini golf - Reading room - Restaurant - Bar - Laundry - Sauna - Tubs in ancient trunks with naturally heated water.
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Oct 13, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Castle Hill, Budapest

Castle Hill in Buda, is on the western side of the Danube River in Budapest, Hungary. Castle Hill, known as Várhegy in Hungarian, was first settled in the thirteenth century, after a Mongol attack led Buda’s citizens to seek a more easily defended neighborhood.

There are a lot of things you should see, like:
Royal Palace is probably the most popular attraction on Castle Hill. It is unusual in that it has never actually been occupied by the Hungarian Royal family, and is more of a pseudo-historical mishmash, like the Mátyás-templom.

Mary Magdalene Tower, on the corner of Országház utca and Kapisztrán tér is the part of a 13th-century Franciscan church used by Hungarian speakers. Under Turkish rule, this was the only church allowed to remain Christian: all others were converted into mosques. The chancel was destroyed in World War II and has not been rebuilt except for one stone window, as a memento.

Vienna Gate at the northern  end of Castle Hill. This was the market for non-Jewish merchants in the Middle Ages, and is where all four streets that run the length of the hill converge.

Fisherman’s Bastion is a large white tower and lookout terrace complex you see hanging over the side of Castle Hill beneath the Mátyás Church.
The National Gallery that houses an astounding collection of paintings. For those interested in Hungarian artists, this is the museum to visit. The exhibition of nineteenth-century Hungarian paintings is most notable.

This is a perfect place to visit in this part of the year, so go pack your bags and visit Castle Hill!

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Oct 12, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza was a large pre-Columbian city built by the Maya civilization. The archaeological site is located in the municipality of Tinum, in the Mexican state of Yucatán. Chichen Itza was one of the largest Maya cities and it was likely to have been one of the mythical great cities, or Tollans, referred to in later Mesoamerican literature. The city may have had the most diverse population in the Maya world, a factor that could have contributed to the variety of architectural styles at the site. Many tourists visit Chichen Itza as a day trip, especially from Cancun, more than 100 miles away. This archaeological site is also an hour and a half away from Merida, the capital of Yucatan. The Maya communities near Chichen Itza have developed many wonderful sites for travelers to rejoice in the Maya Cultural heritage. It is recommended you avoid a day-trip visit to Chichen Itza and schedule a night or two to enjoy all the activities nearby.

The ruins are divided into two groups. One group belongs to the classic Maya Period and was built between the 7th and 10th centuries A.D., at which time the city became a prominent ceremonial center. The other group corresponds to the Maya-Toltec Period, from the later part of the 10th century to the beginning of the 13th century A.D. This area includes the Sacred Well and most of the outstanding ruins. The Maya name: “Chichen Itza” means ” at the edge of the Itza’s well.” This derives from chi’, meaning “mouth” or “edge”, and ch’e’en, meaning “well.” Itzá is the name of an ethnic-lineage group that dominated the northern peninsula of Yucatan, Mexico prior to the Spanish Conquest. It is believed that “Itza” derives from the Maya itz, meaning “magic,” and (h)á, meaning “water;” Itzá means: “Water Magicians.” So experience the magnificent energy of Mayan civilization and visit Chichen Itza.
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Oct 9, 2012 - Destinations    Comments Off

Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg is the capital of the Alsace region of France and is most widely known for hosting a number of important European institutions. It is also famous for its beautiful historical center - the Grande Île - which was the first city center to be classified entirely as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Strasbourg is a popular tourist destination primarily thanks to the beautifully preserved and pedestrian friendly city center, which can be explored on foot or bicycle in a few days. Don’t forget that Strasbourg’s appeal now brings tourists to the city throughout the year, with large tour groups especially frequent during the summer months and during the annual winter market. Staying for a few days will allow you to see the city when it’s calmest, first thing in the morning and during the evening. You will surely enjoy it here if you choose to visit.

You must see Cathédrale Notre Dame - built between 1176 and 1439 and with a 142 meter tower (the highest cathedral tower in France), the cathedral is undoubtedly Strasbourg’s finest architectural highlight. Just nearby on place du Château is the Musée de l’Oeuvre Notre Dame - a splendid museum of medieval religious art related to the cathedral. Places you should also consider visiting are:

Palais des Rohan, a French style palace, built after the acquisition of the town by the French (1681). Home to the Museum of Fine Arts, the Archaeological Museum and the Museum of Applied Arts.

Musée Alsacien, the museum that features articles from the daily lives of Alsatian peoples from the 13th to 19th centuries: clothing, furniture, toys, tools of artisans and farmers, and religious objects used in Christian, Jewish, and even pagan rites. The exhibits are in rooms connected by wooden staircases and balconies in adjacent multistory Renaissance-era houses around a central courtyard.

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