Archive for March, 2010
The Bay of Islands, on New Zealand’s North Island, is an area of unspoilt coastal beauty with a sub-tropical climate. The Bay of Islands is a favorite holiday destination for tourists. It covers an area on the east coast of Northland province, the warm north of New Zealand. The main place to stay is Paihia, a small, peaceful town with a golden sandy beach that is perfect for all types of water activities.
On the nearby Waitangi National Reserve, visit the house where the historic Treaty of Waitangi was signed by the Maoris and the British in 1840. This reserve is special to all New Zealanders. Learn about the Maori culture in a traditional Maori Meeting House and admire the 35-metre long Maori war canoe which is launched into the water once a year on 6 February, the Waitangi Day national holiday. There are number of guided tours that will give you a unique insight into this special and spiritual place.
From Paihia, take a short boat trip over to Russell, a former whaling and trading port once dubbed ‘the hellhole of the Pacific’ because of its reputation for attracting drunken sailors and other undesirable characters. It is now a sleepy village with few signs of its more colorful past. It is home to Christ Church, the oldest surviving church in New Zealand. The bullet holes in its wooden walls are a lasting reminder of the Maori uprising and siege of 1845.
The Russell Museum gives a fascinating insight into the history of the town and includes a scale model of Captain Cook’s ship, Endeavour, which was the first European ship to sail into the area in 1769.
Planning cheap holidays in Czech Republic is something most people never think about when deciding where to go. You do not know what you are missing out on if you have never visited the country. It is nothing like you might think it is full of history and adventure. There are great restaurants, hotels and things to do and see. The weather is nice and the people are very hospitable. You can access the attractions with ease and enjoy some of the nightlife after a day of exploring. You will find that Czech Republic is a great place to vacation.
The place to visit is Prague for some exciting attractions. Here you will find historical buildings, parks, museums, a brewery and some great neighborhoods. The Charles Bridge is where you will find the Lessor Town connected to the Old Town. On the bridge, you will find tourists, vendors and some painters. It is an extraordinary place to visit. When you are in Old Town, you visit the Old Town Square where you will see cafes, entertainers and some amazing buildings. You will want to visit the Old Town Hall and Astronomical Clock. This clock was originally built back in 1354.
Your cheap holidays in Czech Republic does not stop with the Old Town area, you can view the entire area from the Petrin Tower in Prague. This is a tower and observation area. The Strahov Monastic Brewery offers a tour that will show you how they make their fine brews found in the nightclubs and bars. The Kampa Park has a playground for the kids and a nice scenic view. The thing that you will enjoy very much is the museums. They have many museums that show the colorful history with exhibits and literature. A religious site that draws tourists to is the Church of the Virgin Mary before Tyn. It is something everyone should see.
Cheap holidays to Czech Republic are more common than one would think. The nightlife is incredible and friendly. The Pinocchio is a gay bar, but the Agharta is a jazz bar with plenty of excitement. If you are looking for some dancing, the Klub Karlovy Lazne is a popular bar and dance club. You cannot imagine the fun you will have on this trip, you just have to experience everything in the area to appreciate your vacation. There is so much to do and it will keep you busy for as long as you stay and enjoy the area. It will be a vacation holiday to remember.
Egypt has long been an African vacation spot, ever since Thomas Cook escorted his first Egypt tour in 1969 thereby inventing long – haul Egypt vacation package tourism. No other country is more stuffed with monuments and antiquities, all the more astonishing when you realize that 96 percent of Egypt is desert, relieved only by the Nile valley and its delta.
Egypt as one of the world’s oldest continuous civilizations, is rich in history and presents an astonishing sweep through five millennia: Three thousand years of pharaoh rule prepared by Assyrian, Persia and Greek invasions, and followed by Roman, Byzantine and Arab conquests, and colonization by Turkey, France and Britain. The most famous pharaonic sights are the pyramids of Giza, the sphinx which are considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, valley of the kings and Kamak. But these are just a tiny fraction of what can be seen. Among the country’s later wonders are some of the world’s oldest churches, with the World’s ‘oldest university’ unearthed in Egypt CAIRO.
Egypt has a lot to offer and our list of attractions below only scratches the surface.
Antiquities aside, there are other treasures to lure travelers, too – luxurious Nile cruises, camelback desert adventures, oasis, Red Sea beaches and coral reefs, isolated monasteries. Egypt truly offers an unforgettable holiday experience.
Egypt’s Attractions And Places To Visit
The pyramids of Giza and Sphinx are just outside downtown Cairo. The Great Pyramid of khufu, the only survivor of the seven wonders of the world, flanked by two other pyramids and the sphinx. The sheer size and geometric precision of the monuments including their astronomical alignment, have long led to theories about their hidden meaning, powers and their architects with some even claiming that they must have been built by beings from outer space.
Cairo is Africa’s biggest metropolis and even the pyramids and sphinx aside, Cairo is a place still worth spending time in. In spite of a population of over 14 million, the visitor to Cairo will find it surprisingly gentle. It can however look about chaotic at times for a foreigner but it has a great feel. Apart from Giza, the indisputable highlight is the Egyptian Antiquities Museum. Even if you’re not a fun of museum’s don’t miss this one – It has some of mankind’s most beautiful creations among its 130,000 exhibits. Most famous among these is the golden funerary mask of pharaoh Tutankhamen. Travelers are often surprised to find that the heart of the city itself is also a museum, especially of Islamic times- there are architectural masterpieces at every turn, including visitable mosques. Close at hand, too, are the ever – entertaining souks of khan el-khalili.
Dakhla oasis A custer of oasis, gardens and lakes, Dakhla is life for fourteen settlements. The oldest and most memorable, with well-preserved traditional architecture, is the village of Al-Qasr, deliciously positioned amid pink dune-draped mountains. Despite having been largely abandoned. Al-Qasr’s old town – dominate by a cylindrical twelfth – century minaret – remains intact, and conceals many a photogenic nook and cranny. Dakhla’s other attractions include romantic Qalamoun village and its improbable desert lakes, the Muzawaka Tombs dug out of a table-top mountain, and the diminutive Egyptian Roman temple or Deir el-hagar, which became a Coptic monastery.
Egypt’s Valley of the Kings Halfway down the Egyptian Nile, Luxor (meaning “the palaces:”) was ancient Thebes, capital of Egypt’s New Kingdom in the second millennium BC. An obscene profusion of pharaonic temples and tombs are found within a few kilometers of town, mostly famously at Kamak and in the valley of the kings. The latter was where generations of pharaohs excavated their tombs; the most famous is that of Tutankhamen, which was opened in 1922 after 3274 years in darkness. Most of its treasures are housed in Cairo’s national museum, though the pharaoh’s mummy and innermost gold coffin are still in situ. Dozens of other tombs can also be visited, many lavishly decorated with hieroglyphs and cosmological scenes.
Karmak While the valley of the kings is all about decoration, in kamak it was size that mattered-its temples, arranged into three precincts, were built to gargantuan scales to house the gods. The most impressive is the colossal temple of Amun, with its bulging columns and even more portly statues, but there are plenty more temples besides, less visited but no less imposing, including those of Khonsu and Ramses III, an impressive avenue or ram-headed sphinxes.
Gilf Kebir For dedicated desert rats, a day to an oasis may not be enough. For those interested, desert excursions and expeditions are possible, both in the Sinal and west of the Nile. Kebir plateau in the Uwaynat Desert, with its evocation World War II wrecks and prehistoric rock art.
Bangladesh, named after Bangla (Bengali), the language of most of its inhabitants other than a few small ethnic or tribal people, a small in area but large in population South-Asian country. The history of Bangladesh is the eternal history of collision between oppressors and oppressed. European traders had arrived in the late 15th century and eventually the British East India Company controlled the region by the late 18th century, from which the British extended their rule over all of India. When Indian independence was achieved in 1947, it was divided in a predominantly Muslim Pakistan and a predominantly Hindu India.
Bengal was thus divided into an eastern part called East Pakistan and a western part, the Indian state of West Bengal. East Pakistan was dominated and frequently neglected by West Pakistan and tensions turned into a struggle for independence in 1971. In March, the attempted repression of this movement resulted in the deaths of millions of Bengalis and a refugee problem that led to Indian intervention in December and, subsequently, independence from Pakistan on 16th December has brought today’s Bangladesh.
Bangladesh consists mostly of a low-lying river delta located on the Indian subcontinent with a largely marshy jungle coastline on the Bay of Bengal known as the Sundarbans, home to the Royal Bengal Tiger. The densely populated delta is formed by the confluence of the Ganges (local name Padma), Brahmaputra (Jamuna), and Meghna rivers and their tributaries as they flow down from the Himalayas. Bangladesh’s alluvial soil is highly fertile but vulnerable to both flood and drought. In Bangladesh hills rise above the plain only in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (highest point: the Keokradong at 1,230 m) in the far southeast and the Sylhet division in the northeast.
Straddling the Tropic of Cancer, climate of Bangladesh is tropical with a mild winter from October to March, a hot, humid summer from March to June, and a humid, warm rainy monsoon from June to October. Natural calamities, such as floods, tropical cyclones, tornadoes, and tidal bores affect Bangladesh very often. Dhaka is the country’s capital and largest city, other major cities include Chittagong, Rajshahi, Khulna and Sylhet. Apart from very small countries such as Singapore and Bahrain, Bangladesh is the most densely populated country in the world.
The Bangladeshi population is relatively homogenous and consists of about 98% ethnic Bengali, who speak Bengali or Bangla. Urdu-speaking, non-Bengali Muslims from other regions of India such as Bihar, as well as various tribal groups who live mostly in the Chittagong Hill Tracts in the southeast, comprise the remainder. Most Bangladeshis (about 83%) are Muslims, but Hindus constitute a sizable (16%) minority. There are also small number of Buddhists, Christians, and animists. Bengali, a member of the Indo-Aryan languages and written in a script similar to Devanagari, is the official national language although English is largely used in official and business purposes.
In Bangladesh, the president is the head of state and holds a largely ceremonial post, with real power held by the prime minister, who is head of government. The prime minister is appointed by the president and must be a member of parliament (MP) whom the president feels commands the confidence of the majority of other MPs. The cabinet is composed of ministers selected by the prime minister and appointed by the president. The Bangladeshi parliament is the House of the Nation or Jatiya Sangsad, whose 300 members are elected by popular vote for five-year terms of office. The highest judiciary body in Bangladesh is the Supreme Court.
Tele-density in Bangladesh is not that high and now mostly covered by several cell-phone companies. While calling Bangladesh, you need to put + 88 as country code. Calling Bangladesh from abroad is quiet cheap using VOIP because several phone cards are available on World Wide Web. Bangladesh calling rates starts from 8 cents in most pc to phone services on net. Several prepaid calling card and phone card companies are available to call both to and from Bangladesh.
One of the ever-popular Balearic Islands, Mallorca is the perfect location for a quiet romantic holiday or full-on family fun.
Mallorca is the middle, and largest, of a set of islands set in the Mediterranean off the east cost of Spain. It has a varied terrain, which means that although the majority of visitors come for the coast and beaches, there is a growing interest in the island’s fertile plains and mountainous regions.
If you want to avoid the over-developed resorts that dominate parts of Mallorca, then choose a boutique hotel. Less stuffy and more intimate than regular hotels, yet with discreet staff and service when you want it, a boutique Mallorcan hotel is the ideal way to truly experience the island. The Palacio Ca Sa Galesa, for example, is set right in the heart of Palma, and boasts the only swimming pool in the Gothic district. No detail has been overlooked, so you immediately feel comfortable in any of its 12 rooms. Alternatively, visit Palma on a day trip from Scott’s Hotel, which is a charming boutique hotel set in a medieval wine-producing village off the main tourist route. Comfort is a key theme here, with goosedown pillows and breakfast until noon.
Visit Palma for a really cosmopolitan view of Mallorca. Half of the island’s population live here so it comes as no surprise that sophisticated bars and classy shops sit easily alongside ancient streets and the astounding Gothic Cathedral. It pays to spend some time exploring the city – whether it’s taking in the amazing view from the waterfront, wandering in and out of the tiny shops in the old Arab Quarter, or taking in the sights from a traditional pony and trap. Further afield, Mallorca boasts a range of interesting towns, secluded bays, and mountain walks that reward with perfect views.
There are many low cost flights from Europe to Mallorca’s main city, Palma de Mallorca. From there, you are spoiled for choice when it comes to travelling around the island. There is a comprehensive bus network that takes you from town to town, or you can hire a car so that you can be in complete control of your itinerary. Alternatively, you can rent a moped, or work off your meals by cycling. It’s never too far from one town to another, so there’s plenty of time for sight seeing however you choose to travel. Use the local ferry services to visit the other Balearic Islands and make the most of your holiday time.
Our winter getaway over the last two days was supposed to include a couple of different activities: snow-tubing and outdoor skating. Well, our outdoor skating fell through, due to the extraordinarily warm conditions, however, we had a beautiful day yesterday on Kempenfelt Bay in Barrie, where we enjoyed some great outdoor time on frozen Lake Simcoe.
Today, after our delicious filling breakfast at Nicholyn Farms Bed and Breakfast, we headed off for another adventure: snowtubing at Horseshoe Valley. Unfortunately the weather today was even less cooperative: as the day progressed it went from freezing rain to rain to a veritable downpour as we drove back to Toronto.
Nevertheless the morning was cold enough for our snowtubing adventure. My 8-year old nephew had never been snowtubing before, and knowing his penchant for high-speed adrenaline-filled activities, we knew that he would fall in love with this sport.
Horseshoe Valley is one of several Ontario winter resorts and in addition to downhill skiing, cross-country skiing and skating, it also features a snow-tubing hill. It’s a thrill to get pulled up on the hill, sitting on a refunctioned inner tube, and then getting linked up in a group of 2, 3 or 4 snow-tubers, who hold on to their neighbouring tuber’s handle and then get pushed down the hill by one of the staff members – with a spin and a momentum that feels almost like a roller coaster!
Snowtubing is just one of the many fun winter activities that Ontario has to offer.
Snow Valley Resort just on the other side of Highway 400 also offers snowtubing.
Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood is another place for Ontario snowtubing enthusiasts.
Obviously hockey is Canada’s national sport and skating runs in the veins of many residents of this northern country. Virtually all Ontario cities, towns and villages have outdoor skating rinks and indoor arenas. Outdoor skating is free in many cases, and indoor pleasure skating is generally a very inexpensive sport.
One of the best known skating Ontario opportunities exists in Ottawa, on the 7.8 km long Rideau Canal, the world’s longest skating rink according to the Guiness Book of Records. The City of Ottawa lists its public skating information on the Internet.
Toronto’s well-known outdoor skating venues include City Hall, Harbourfront and Grenadier Pond in HIgh Park and the City of Toronto provides a list of leisure skating opportunities in Toronto.
Skiing & snowboarding:
Although Ontario certainly doesn’t have the greatest vertical drop compared to international ski resorts, but it does offer 41 resorts for downhill skiers and snowboarders at the Ski Ontario website.
Cross-country skiing & snowshoeing:
Ontario’s more than 120 cross-country ski areas are rivalled only by Quebec for sheer number and variety. Ski areas are operated by various organizations ranging from parks to clubs and resorts. The Ski Ontario website provides an extensive listing of cross-country opportunities across Ontario.
Special offers for snowshoeing and cross-country getaways are featured on the Ontario Outdoor website.
Ontario offers more than 43,000 km (26,000 mi.) of maintained, interconnected, uncongested trails. It is the longest network of recreational trails in the world. The 248 member clubs of the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs build and maintain this extensive trail network. Find more information about snowmobiling in Ontario in the Ontario Snowmobiler Magazine.
The north of Ontario is the heart of Ontario’s iceclimbing country and features ice-clad routes with heights of more than 90 m. Special ice-climbing getaways are featured on the Ontario Outdoor Website.
Dog sledding has evolved from a utilitarian form of transport in northern countries to a unique travel experience. Some dogsledding operators have a guide drive the team, where at other places you may drive the sled yourself. The Ontario Outdoor Website features a variety of dog sledding adventures and getaways.
Urban Winter Getaways:
For those who want to enjoy the best that Ontario’s cities have to offer over the winter time, there are a variety of special events going on. Many cities and towns throughout Ontario feature special winter festivals, starting with many festivals of light, tree lighting ceremonies and New Year’s celebrations in November and December, and continuing with a variety of special events, trade fairs and restaurant promotions throughout January and February. The Success with Ontario website features a listing of Ontario’s Festivals and events.
Major festivals include:
Toronto’s WinterCity Festival and Winterlicious
Ottawa’s Winterlude Winter Festival
Niagara’s Icewine Festival
Ontario Accommodation Choices:
Ontario offers a wide variety of choices for getaways. From all-inclusive feature-packed resorts, to down-to-earth farm vacations, to cozy bed and breafasts, secluded cottages and chalets and inviting country inns, Ontario has a wide selection of accommodation providers. Unique boutique hotels, and centrally located urban hotels round out the accommodation offers. Ontario Travel’s website offers a great overview of the accommodation choices available in Ontario.
There is plenty to do in the winter in Ontario, indoors and out. Nature lovers, urban explorers, adrenaline junkies, and romantic lovebirds will all find something to choose from to brighten up those cold winter days.
The beachfront apartments at Tel Aviv are among the best vacation rentals in Israel. The apartments are situated about 50m from the promenade. Fully furnished apartments will surely provide you with an excellent vacation experience since they come with wireless internet, satellite TV, and other amenities. The apartments are best suited for families, singles, and even business professionals. You can also pick the apartments with balcony so that you can view the ocean. If you don’t like the crowd, you should go there during the months of November, December, January, and February. If you go there from May to August, expect lots of crowds because it is peak season.
The seashore suites at Tel Aviv are privately owned. This is best for an intimate and quiet stay. You can pick the suites with balcony so that you can get an excellent view of the sea. The suites also come with kitchenette, air conditioned, bathroom, seating corner, wireless internet, and other amenities. While you’re there, you can enjoy activities like clothes shopping, grocery shopping, and watching movies at the movie theater. You can also go walking, ocean sports, eat at restaurants, go to music bars, quiet pubs and bars, clubs and discotheques.
Check out Tel Aviv Seashore Suites. The neighborhood is really vibrant and elegant. The living room is spacious and fully furnished. It also comes with a kitchenette, internet access, cable TV, towels, linens, and other amenities. It is only about 1km away from the center of Tel Aviv. You can enjoy many activities like shopping, watching movies, go bowling, walking, water skiing, surfing, sailing, or go to clubs, restaurants, bars, discotheques, cabernet shows, nude bars, topless bars, and pubs.
There are still apartments within the city where you can enjoy a sea view from the balcony. Like Seashore Suites, the apartments provide bedrooms and the building has facilities like outpool, Jacuzzi, health club, indoor parking, and tennis court. This is located about 6 miles from the city. However, the activities are limited. While you’re there, you can only enjoy visiting pubs and quiet bars. This is best suited for people who want to have a quiet and peaceful vacation.
You have many choices when it comes to vacation rentals in Israel, particularly in the Tel Aviv area. You can still find other vacation rentals there and it’s up to you to pick the best one that can meet your needs and requirements. Compare the various apartments, hotels, and suites so that you can look into their amenities, offered activities, and prices. The prices and fees charged by these vacation rentals vary and so you should pick the one that you can afford.
Going on a vacation requires careful planning. You will need to determine the peak and low season so that you can pick the perfect dates for your vacation. You can go to Tel Aviv alone or you can also bring your family. Businesspersons also visit Tel Aviv because of its amazing location and sights. Pick a vacation rental and start enjoying the rest of the city
The Greek isle of Milos, a volcanic island in the Aegean Sea, is a beautiful and little-known vacation spot in one of the most gorgeous locations in the world. Known as “the island of colors,” Milos has a long history that is evident in the surrounding countryside and architecture. Near the ancient town of Milos stands a theatre dating back from the days of the Golden Age of Rome, and there are still remains of buildings and town walls. Milos is possibly best known as the site where the Venus de Milo was discovered, which now stands in the Louvre today.
Milos truly is a profusion of colors. Arbutus, orange, olive, and cypress trees decorate the island between fields of cotton and barely. Vines grow throughout the island, creating an enchanting and beautiful landscape. The island is truly “in bloom” in the months of April and May, a time that also offers beautiful weather for tourists. Every July Milos hosts a huge festival of cultural events and music, and this month is seeing more and more vacationers.
Traveling to and from Milos is easy, with daily flights to Athens and daily ferries to other shores. The island offers everything to attract tourists to vacation in Milos: pastry shops, discos, cafes, supermarkets, and jewelry stores are scattered throughout the island in convenient locations.
If you vacation in Milos, you will have more than seventy different beaches to choose from. Surrounded by water and sands of all colors, it is on the coast that you will understand why Milos is known as the island of colors. The sands range from white to black, and the waters range in various shades of deep blues and greens. The beaches are quiet and restful, with no restaurants, bars, or stereos (except during the season, in July and August).
The cuisine makes any vacation in Milos a true experience, and the variety of restaurants will tempt any tourist palate. Local delicacies include dishes made from cabbage, garlic sauce, eggplant, zucchini, potatoes, and pork. Cheese made from goat milk is a mainstay of the island, and the locally-made thyme honey is sold in shops throughout the island. If you vacation in Milos, you will be able to taste locally-made wine, as well as wine imported from the island of Crete.
Any vacation in Milos will thrill and delight the senses. Milos is an island filled with colors, cuisine, music, and ancient mystery. The culture and sights of Milos, not to mention the glorious beaches, make a vacation in Milos perfect for anyone wanting to experience beauty and culture in an exotic and serene location. But be warned! One vacation in Milos often leads to another…and another…and another.