Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Simple Travel Tips for Families

Travelling with the family can be very exciting, if not a little stressful. When you’re all travelling together, tensions can run a little high. You can get stressed and worry about the littlest thing. Worry no more! This guide will give you some simple tips to have an amazing time and stop worrying on your trip!

MAKE A LIST BEFORE PACKING

Before you start packing for your trip, make a list. Make a list for each family member, and list items in categories so you know you have everything you could possibly need. Making a list in advance will make it less likely that you’ll forget something. You also have something to check off against as you’re packing to leave. The feeling of forgetting something is the worst, but with a list you don’t need to worry.

TAKE EMERGENCY NUMBERS AND KITS

Make sure you take any emergency numbers you might need. Write these down in a notebook, or somewhere you will always be able to access them. Write down any family numbers you might need, and even emergency numbers for the place you’re visiting. It’s also wise to pack a small emergency kit for each family member. This kit could contain a drink/snack, toothbrush, and anything else they might need at a moment’s notice. It’s probably a good idea to take a first aid kit with you too.

STAY IN THE COUNTRY


There’s no need to travel out of the country each time you go away. Families can find so many things to do back home. You could visit Blackpool with its theme parks and other attractions. You could even go somewhere like Bath, full of pretty sights to see. Explore your own country and you might be surprised at the fun you can have!


DO SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE

Make sure you do something for everybody on your trip. Ask if there’s anything they’d like to do and try to include it. Making sure you do something everybody enjoys will make it a memorable trip for all.

GET YOUR KIDS TO KEEP A TRAVEL DIARY

Why not get the kids to keep a travel diary? This will give them something to do when they might not have anything to keep them entertained. It’ll also be great to look at it and see it from their point of view! They can look back at this for years to come and remember all of the great things you did as a family.



Wednesday, December 9, 2015

8 Reasons You Should Pay India a Visit

If you’re an avid visitor of new places, then you want to make sure you add India to your list. India is a wonderful place, full of things to do and see. It’s probably much more modernized than you’d imagine too, making it the perfect place for a diverse visit. If you need some solid reasons to visit India, here’s 8 of them:


The Parties are Something Else

If you like a good party, India knows how to throw one. Whether you’re heading out to a club or on the beach, you won’t believe what goes on. They have some of the best nightclubs, beach parties, and even festivals in the world. You can really let your hair down here and have an amazing time. Just make sure you stay safe!

The Beaches are Beautiful With Lots Going on

There are some gorgeous beaches in India, all perfect for different things. As mentioned before, you can go partying on beaches like in Goa, or you can try your hand at watersports. You could even take some time out for yourself just to relax. You have plenty of beaches to choose from, so there’s bound to be one that suits you.

The Shopping is Amazing

Many people come to India for the shopping! Not only do they have designer boutiques, they are also full of flea markets and bargain stores. This means you can go home with so many unique and amazing souvenirs. Many of which you’d pay top dollar for back home! Shopping in India is an absolute must. You’ll come home with so many different things.

Experience Indian Culture

Although you can party and shop in India, you can also experience the wonderful Indian culture. Many traditions are still followed to this day, and you’ll be amazed. Travelling somewhere new is all about experiencing the culture, so make sure you do!

Enjoy The Delicious Food

Indian food is famous all over the world. It’s the favorite of many people, especially those who love a takeaway on a Friday night. However, you just can’t beat Indian food cooked in India. You can buy cheap street food that will fill you up, or you can have sit down meals that go on for hours.




Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Tips for Planning a Great Family Road Trip

Planning a road trip for your family is a great way to head out and see new places and experience new things together while making memories that will last a lifetime. But a road trip requires a bit more planning than your standard vacation because you have to factor in your vehicle, drive time, and your route, among other things. Check out the tips below so you can plan a memorable family road trip that will be a lot of fun for everyone.

Consider Upgrading Your Ride to an RV

Instead of cramming everyone into your small four-door sedan, minivan, or SUV, especially if you have a large family, consider renting an RV or a travel trailer. Not only will everyone have a lot more room to relax in, but you'll also have more room for your luggage, you'll have actual beds to sleep in, and you'll even have an area to prepare your food and use an actual bathroom that's private, rather than relying upon public restrooms all along the way.

Plan Your Route in Advance

While it may sound fun to head out on the road with no real route in place, this could result in trouble and cause you to lose precious time. Therefore, take the time to plan your route before you head out on the road. Choose your destination and then figure out what the best route would be, whether you're aiming to take the scenic, natural route, the fastest route, or the one with plenty of fun stops along the way. Having this plan to follow will keep everyone on schedule and hopefully prevent the kids from asking the dreaded question, "Are we there yet?"

Bring Along Plenty of Food

In addition to packing your clothes and other necessary supplies, don't forget to pack enough food, as you never know when you'll be able to find a place to eat while out on long stretches of highway en route to your destination. It can be difficult to find places to eat, especially if your family follows special diets, so packing plenty of food in airtight containers and coolers will ensure you always have snacks ready when the kids get hungry, as well as actual meals to sit down and enjoy together. And, again, if you rent an RV or trailer, you'll even have a small kitchen you can use to prepare small meals along the way.

Involve the Entire Family When Planning Activities

When planning activities for your road trip, definitely make it a point to involve the kids. Ask them what they would like to do, ask their opinions on ideas that you have, and make sure that they feel like a part of the planning process. In this way, you'll plan the ideal road trip for everyone involved, not just the parents.

Prepare Your Vehicle Before You Head Off

Before you head out onto the road, you also want to make sure that your vehicle is in the best condition possible to handle the long ride ahead. Complete all of the usual preventative maintenance that you have scheduled throughout the year, and check that no repairs are needed. For example, you should make sure your vehicle has all of its fluids topped off, that the tires have good tread and plenty of air, that the oil has been changed, and that you have a spare tire and other supplies in the trunk in case you end up needing to make a repair while on the road. When in doubt, have your vehicle checked out by your mechanic.

Plan for Time to Rest Along the Way

In addition to switching drivers, make sure you also plan for plenty of time to rest along the way. Whether you sleep in the car at a safe, secure, designated rest area or you book a hotel room for the night, the last thing that you want to do during a long road trip is push yourself too far. Falling asleep behind the wheel is a real danger during a road trip, and it can result in serious accidents.
By keeping these handy tips in mind, you can plan an unforgettable family road trip to your favorite destination and have a blast seeing the sights along the way. The great thing about a road trip is the fact that you're in control, so you can stop as many times as you like on your way to your vacation destination and you can plan activities that the entire family will love.


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

4 Ways to Find the Perfect Hotel

A successful trip to anywhere in the world is all about the planning. There's something to be said for being spontaneous too. But it helps to have the bare bones of your travels laid out. The main things that people want to sort out are their transport and accommodation. Some people might risk it and only bother with the first one, but not everyone is ready to be that unprepared. There are several options for where to lay your head, from camping to apartment rentals. But many people choose to stay in hotels. Finding the perfect one isn't always easy, though, especially if you're a hotel aficionado.

 

Know What You Need

If you want to find a hotel that's perfect for you, you've got to know what you're looking for. Hotels come in all shapes and sizes, from cheap and simple to lavish and luxury. Some of the things you need to think about include the location and the amenities you need. Some people are happy with a bed and shower, while others need a pool, a restaurant, a gym and a library. If you know what you want before you begin your search, you can narrow down what you're looking for.

 

Take an Interest in Hotels

One of the best ways to find an amazing hotel is by taking a keen interest in them. Most people aren't bothered about hotels. They might know a few big names, but they don't have a clue about all the latest happenings. They don't know designers or owners, or the most recent hotel trends. You can be ahead of the game by learning about everything that's going on in the hotel industry for your favorite cities. You can read about hotel developers, like J Street Hospitality in California. You can learn more about Sajan Hansji, the group's president, to keep up with their latest projects. Not everyone cares about the design of a new hotel. But those that do can stay in trendy new places before anyone else hears about them.

 

Read Reviews

You can't always rely on other people's opinions. But they're often helpful in large numbers. Before you decide to stay at a hotel, remember to look at the reviews online. Some unfortunate people book into accommodation and only think to check reviews once they discover it's not up to standard. They're no use after you've already found out that the hotel doesn't meet your needs. Always check the reviews, even for the most expensive hotels. Paying a lot of money won't guarantee that you get what you're looking for.

 



Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Best Things to Do in Florence, Italy

Florence is one of Italy's most beautiful, and most famous, cities [which is why I’m adding Florence to my wish list]. Known for being the birthplace of the Renaissance, the city is overflowing with arts and culture to explore. And even if paintings and architecture aren't for you, you're sure to enjoy the food and drink on offer. Summer is the best place to visit, when the weather is warm and sunny. But you can go at any time of year and enjoy everything the city has to offer. Do all the tourist activities or mingle with the locals as you explore Florence, from its colorful past to its lively present.

See Some Art

Since it's where the Renaissance began, you can't leave Florence without seeing some art. You'll find some stunning and memorable works in the city's museums and galleries. Head to the Uffizi Gallery for some of the best Renaissance artworks available to see. The collection is enormous, so it would take you a long time to see all of it. Instead, choose the rooms that interest you most. If you want some guidance, you can go on a group tour to learn more about the paintings. Or, if you're more of a solitary person, take an audio tour with a headset instead.

 

Enjoy the Food

Wherever you go in Italy, you have to enjoy the food on offer. When you're in Florence, the one thing you have to try is a Florentine steak. These huge steaks are a challenge, perfect for anyone who wants to show off their ability to polish off a lot of red meat. But don't worry if you're not a meat-eater, because there are always pasta and fish dishes on offer too. Food tours in Florence are an excellent way to explore the cuisine around the city. Sometimes it's a good idea to have a helping hand to show you around.

Enjoy the Drink Too

If food isn't your thing but drinking is, you can explore Florence through alcohol. Firstly, there's the wine, which you can enjoy in bars and restaurants, as well as buying some to take home. You can also experience the Italian tradition of aperitivo. The after-work drink is enjoyed by Italians everywhere. Sit down with a cocktail or perhaps a glass or prosecco and some bar snacks or small plates of food. Aperitivo might just turn into dinner if you hang around long enough.

 



Monday, October 19, 2015

4 Must-See Places in Hawaii

The Hawaiian Islands are full of beauty and incredible places to see, along with loads of things to do. If you're planning a much-needed getaway to any one of these islands, you're sure to find that there are so many opportunities to explore, have fun, and relax. In fact, it may even be difficult for you to narrow down your many options to those that you can accomplish within the timeframe that you'll be there.

Some places throughout Hawaii, though, are considered the must-see spots of these islands, and they're the areas that you definitely don't want to miss. Check out the list below for four of these must-see places so you can plan your trip accordingly.
 

1. Na Pali Coast, Kauai

The Na Pali Coast is one of the most beloved places in all of Kauai, and it's also considered Hawaii's best route for backpackers, as it's 22 miles round-trip and offers unspoiled lands, valleys, cliffs, and, of course, views of the Pacific Ocean.
Photo source: Wikipedia

The trail that runs along the Na Pali Coast was actually constructed in the middle of the 1800s, and it features sheer drop-offs, sharp turns along cliffs, and switchbacks that are narrow, so you need to be strong and balanced, as well as brave. Only hike this area if you have a lot of experience with hiking these types of trails. But if you have the skills, expect to pass through a total of five valleys before the path will end and you reach Kalalau Beach.
 

2. Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Hawaii's Volcanoes National Park is one of the most sought-after places on the island because it is unlike any other place on Earth. There, you'll find amazing black lava, rainforests, and an array of landscapes with a total of seven ecosystems.

Check out Crater Rim Drive, which is 11 miles long and encircles Kilauea's summit caldera. Remember, Kilauea is one of the most active volcanoes on the planet, so it's definitely a sight to behold.

Also be sure to check out Steam Vents, which is where you can actually see steam rise out of the interior of the Earth. And Thurston Lava Tube is a walkable, natural tunnel that's 500 years old and used to house a river of violent molten lava.
 

3. Waimea Canyon, Kauai

If you're in search of picture-perfect, raw, natural beauty, you must see Waimea Canyon, which is found on the west side of Kauai. It's 1.5 miles wide and 13 miles long, as well as an incredible 2,750 feet deep. There, you'll find incredible cliffs that are rugged and colored a variety of hues, including brown, orange, green, and red.

Take the Waimea Canyon Drive, also known as Highway 550, to Puu Hinahina Lookouts and Waimea Canyon if you want to head out on your own. Then you can hike the Kukui Trail, which is a 2.5-mile trail that's quite challenging because it features a steep path that drops a whopping 2,200 feet to the floor of the canyon.
 

4. Road to Hana, Maui

If you want to drive someplace and rest your feet for a while, you can still enjoy some exhilarating beauty if you are on the island of Maui and taking the famous Road to Hana. So go ahead and rent a convertible so you can have the top down and the music turned up.

The Hana Highway, also known as Highway 360 and Highway 36, is truly an adventurous excursion that you will not forget, and you may want to stop along the way and take some photographs of the beautiful scenery, 50 bridges, and the small town of Hana itself, which is located on the eastern shore.
Hana is known for its thriving Hawaiian culture, but before you get there, you can enjoy breakfast in Paia, swim in the amazing waterfall pools that are found in Puaa Kaa State Wayside Park, and visit the Kahanu Garden and Waianapanapa State Park, which is a black sand beach.

When booking your trip to Hawaii, consider what spots you definitely must see, as you may need to book several hotels on different islands and plan for flights between the islands throughout your vacation. You can also search for things like cheap Kauai vacation packages if you are on a budget, or you can book your stay at a resort and review their vacation packages. This could be a great way to plan your trip more easily and affordably. Then it's a matter of heading out and having fun!


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

You Can Plan A Fun And Memorable Skiing Trip With These Tips And Ideas

If, like me, you are someone who loves to explore new places and go on adventures, you might be in the middle of planning a winter trip. When it comes to planning a winter vacay, it can be hard to know the best type of holiday to plan.

One incredibly popular winter vacation is, of course, skiing. If you have always fancied the idea of taking a skiing trip, why not plan a trip for the end of this year? The main issue when it comes to planning a skiing trip is where to go - there are thousands of skiing resorts across the world to choose from.
skiing.jpg Photo source: wikimedia

To help make planning your skiing trip a little easier, here are a few tips and ideas to take note of:

Choose the perfect place

First things first, choose the perfect destination. Where you choose to go skiing will depend on various factors. These include things like your budget, how well you can ski and what type of trip you want to have.

If you are traveling with children, for example, you would want to find a skiing resort that is family-friendly. Perhaps somewhere with a creche, and lots of other children’s activities, as well as skiing.
There are lots of fantastic skiing resorts to choose from, but Meribel in France is one of the most popular. This is because the luxury in Meribel is second to none, which has made it an incredibly popular skiing resort.

 

Pick the perfect group

When it comes to planning a great trip the most important thing you can do is choose a great group of people to travel with. Think carefully about who you want to travel with to ensure that you choose the right people.

It’s a good idea to choose travel buddies who are similar to you in terms of personality. If, for example, you are laid back and happy to go with the flow, make sure to choose similar people to travel with.

 

Look out for deals

If you want to make your trip special, but can’t afford to pay too much for it, keep an eye out for deals. Often, you can find deals online that give you the best accommodation, such as lodges with hot tubs.

So if you want to make your trip a little more luxurious without paying for the luxury price tag, finding a good deal is crucial. Shop around on various travel sites and you should find lots of fantastic deals.

 

Practice beforehand

If you aren’t an experienced skier, it’s a good idea to practice your skiing before your trip. That way you can ensure that by the time you go, you are at least able to stay on your feet.

Head to your local indoor ski slope and practice getting your balance and using your skis. You could even get a few lessons before your trip so that you are more confident when on your skis.

If you want to ensure that your skiing trip is as fun and enjoyable as possible, all you need to do is follow these tips.


Monday, September 28, 2015

5 Reasons Why I Want To Revisit The United Kingdom

I have done some travelling around the world, and the one place I want to revisit is the United Kingdom. The UK has been on my bucket list for a long time until I’ve finally had the chance to spend a week there in August of 2011 [yeah... dreams do come true!]. There is something about the culture that makes me incredibly curious. Although Sweden and the UK are not worlds apart, there’s a huge difference between the two countries.

There looks like a lot more to Britain than a different culture. In fact, below are five reasons why I  consider myself lucky that I am able to experience what the UK has to offer.
 

The Food

The great thing about travelling abroad is getting to experience some of the quirks of the area. From what I can gather at home, the UK is well known for its quality food or lack thereof in some cases. People often give the Brits a hard time about their diet because, quite frankly, it doesn’t look appetizing at all! But, after trying a few dishes, I have to say that the food is delicious. Although, I have stayed away from the black pudding,  I've fallen in love with the famous Yorkshire pudding.



London

Ever since I was a little child, I have always wanted to see London. London is one of those places that you have to tick off the bucket list. There are lots of amazing attractions, and the atmosphere and the nightlife are unbelievable. Plus, it’s been amazing to see the mix of London’s history and tradition with today’s more contemporary way of life.

The Scenery

I know there are hundreds of places that have amazing scenery, but Britain has always stuck in my mind. Places like the Lake District, the Cairngorms, London Eye to the historic Tower of London and Cornwall all look spectacular as they have the most breathtaking views.


The Weather

Does this sound crazy? Everyone always goes on about how bad the British weather is, not least the British! But, can it be that bad? Obviously, you never know until you find out for yourself, which is why I  look forward to sampling the weather again.

The People

Every British person I have come across while I’ve gone travelling has always been such a nice person. They are sweet and charming, but they are also mischievous. Or, as the Brits would say, they are cheeky! I love their sense of humor, too. One thing that I love the most, and I don’t think I am alone here, is the accent. Obviously, the stereotypical British accent is incredibly posh and makes me feel like I am part of Downton Abbey. But, I have come across so many British accents that I love and it’s always cool to hear a few more!


How about you?  Have you been to the UK?  If yes, how’s the experience been?  If not, do you have it in your travel wish list?

Have a fantastic week!



Thursday, September 10, 2015

Why Italy Is A Fantastic Destination Any Time Of The Year

Europe is a fantastic place to travel to. There are so many incredible countries and cities to enjoy. They are all steeped in history, and each enjoy a unique culture of their own. With dozens of languages to master, it’s no wonder travelers to Europe spend so long away.

One of my favorite countries to find out more about is Italy. Italy can be thought of as being the home of the arts and music. There are so many incredible artists and composers throughout history that were born here or worked here. With so many interesting characters, I think it is worth finding out more about the country they call home.

Italy has a thriving wine industry. There are several great vineyard regions in the country. Each of these regions also has unique culinary surprises too! Italian food is just a very broad term for a range of incredible dishes you can find in Italy. Tuscan food is quite different to the dishes you might find in places like Vienna or Rome.

The Mediterranean diet is thought to be one of the most healthy you can choose. And it is certainly one of the most delicious when you are in Italy. Many dishes are rich in Olive oil and homegrown tomatoes. This combination offers up many exciting culinary delights from pizza to Bolognese.


Of course, there is far more to do in Italy than just eat. Milan is home to the world of fashion. If you are in the city, you will be delighted by the fashion boutiques and a huge array of shopping centres available. If you’re after a new outfit or a whole new look, you won’t be disappointed here.

During the winter, the area of Courmayeur is renowned for good skiing. You can find out why it’s so popular at http://momentumski.com/destinations/italy/courmayeur/ or travel there during the ski season for yourself. In the summer, the coastal area of Bibione has one of the most popular beaches. Miles of golden sand and plenty of opportunities for beach volleyball make it quite busy in the holiday season. Sardinia offers some of the best beachfront nightlife.

To explore more of Italy, there are plenty of choices. You can cycle through Tunisia or any of the wine regions. You can sail to Sardinia or any of the ports in a private yacht. Cruise ships often stop in the Mediterranean for those wishing to see more of Italy too. The easiest way to reach the cities is to fly in. The road network isn’t too bad either. You can drive from almost anywhere in Europe, and the currency is the Euro.

Italy is full of beauty. The architecture of the cathedrals and museums will leave you in awe. Inside these incredible buildings are amazing works of art from some of the most incredible artists that ever lived. Today, Italy is vibrant in the cities and relaxed in the countryside. It really is the perfect mix of everything you could possibly want in a vacation destination. Whatever time of year you choose to take your break, Italy can deliver one of the best holidays you could want.


Monday, September 7, 2015

Top European Travel Destinations In 2015!

We all like to travel and go on at least one holiday during the year. If you’re thinking of taking a trip, then have a peek at my list of the best travel destinations in Europe this year!

 

United Kingdom


Starting things off with perhaps the less flashy of the destinations on this list, the UK. Although not gifted with a tropical climate, the UK still has its moments. Some seaside towns play host to lovely little beaches, which are perfect when the sun comes out. But, when you visit Great Britain, you don’t tend to go for the weather. You go for the sightseeing and the landmarks and all the amazing history and British culture. There are iconic buildings like Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament - and who can forget Big Ben! These three landmarks are in London alone; it doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of things to see in the UK. A Great British holiday is certainly a great little idea!

France

The country of France has been a popular holiday destination for years and years. Thanks, in part, to its incredibly versatile climate. You have the snowy French Alps which are great for holidayers in the winter months. Then there’s the Mediterranean south of France that is sunshine and hot weather, perfect for a summer holiday. And then, of course, you have the iconic city of Paris, which is ideal for a getaway at any time of the year. Plus, as seen in an article on the Justrichest website, Paris is home to one of the most expensive hotel suites in the world. So, there are plenty of top class hotels for you to stay in which will make your stay all the more enjoyable.

 

Croatia

Croatia has become a highly sought after holiday destination over the last few years - and with good reason. Everything about the country is visually stunning. It’s renowned for having some of the nicest, cleanest, water in the entire world. The beaches are epic, and the old stoney buildings look so quaint and adorable. It’s also perfectly situated in Europe, with a nice Mediterranean climate. In fact, Croatia is one of the nicest and sunniest places you can visit during the summer. Also, there’s the rich Croatian culture to immerse yourself in and enjoy. This country is definitely near the top of my ‘to visit’ list.

 

Italy

There is so much to love about Italy, from the warm summers to the beautiful old-fashioned architecture. A trip to Italy will certainly not be wasted, you have a choice of so many gorgeous cities to visit. At the top of your list will be Rome, the nation’s capital and home to many iconic sights. The most iconic of all sights is the ancient Rome Colosseum, which is still standing in the middle of the city. Take a tour around it and revel in a piece of history. Then, of course, you have the mother of all reasons to travel to Italy; the food! Italian cuisine is in a league of its own, and you should definitely experience it. There’s no food quite like fresh Italian food in Italy.


Friday, September 4, 2015

Explore Sri Lanka in Luxury with These Tips

In English, Sri Lanka literally translates to ‘beautiful island’ and it’s quite easy to see why. Although it’s not the largest of islands, Sri Lanka is bursting with culture, beautiful golden beaches, stunning green scenery and lots of majestic elephants. There’s so much to experience in Sri Lanka, from exploring the island in a private car, taking curry cookery lessons at authentic homestays, relaxing on the gorgeous palm fringed beaches, taking a train ride through the beautiful countryside, or challenging yourself to a new adventure climbing the famous pilgrimage of Adam’s Peak. Read on to discover our top tips for enjoying a luxury vacation to Sri Lanka in style.

Photo source:ugaescapes.com

When to Visit

Sri Lanka really is a destination that can be visited at any time of the year, although it’s important that you know which parts of the island are best to visit at certain times of the year. Sri Lanka is located near the equator, and enjoys a tropical climate with two monsoons. The southwest monsoon, known as ‘Yala’, blows from the middle of May to late September from the southwest, and the ‘Maha’, the northeast monsoon, blows in the opposite direction between the months of October and November.

During the Yala monsoon, the weather is at its best around the east coast in areas such as Trincomalee. If you are planning on visiting Sri Lanka at a time when the Maha monsoon is blowing, the west coast will be enjoying the best weather.

Visa and Passports

When travelling to Sri Lanka it’s important that you’re clued up on matters regarding visas and passports in order to avoid running into any difficulty when travelling. Before travelling to Sri Lanka, you will need to apply for a visa online beforehand through the Electronic Travel Authorization [ETA].

You can do this up to ninety days before you depart, and individual applications cost around thirty dollars. Visas are valid for up to thirty days, however if you are planning to stay in Sri Lanka for a longer amount of time you will be able to extend your visa at the Department of Immigration in Sri Lanka.

Money Matters

The local currency in Sri Lanka is the Rupee which comes in denominations up to 5000, so when shopping it’s a good idea to carry change for making any smaller purchases. Almost every hotel in Sri Lanka will allow you to exchange money, however for cheaper rates it’s recommended that you exchange money at a reputable bank. You may be able to exchange money before you depart, however once in Sri Lanka you will find a number of reliable banks that will allow you to exchange more money if needed. Large shops, restaurants and hotels in Sri Lanka will also usually allow the option to pay by Visa or MasterCard.

Giving tips is normal practice in Sri Lanka, and tips tend to make up a large part of many employees’ salaries. It is recommended that you use discretion when tipping for services in hotels and restaurants and your drivers or tour guides.

Getting Around

Since public transport is not particularly easy to use in Sri Lanka, the most recommended method of transport in Sri Lanka is to use a private car with a driver. There are a number of car hire companies that will allow you to do so, or you could book a private car as part of your holiday package.

 If you decide to travel to Ella, you’ll be most likely to do so by a train ride through the countryside. This train ride is well known as one of the most beautiful journeys through Sri Lanka, and if you purchase a second class ticket you’ll be able to travel with the local people and learn more about the culture. If you’d also like to visit the Maldives during your trip to Sri Lanka, this can be done by a sea plane trip which takes around one and a half hours.

Things to Do

Sri Lanka is home to a number of beautiful beaches from wide golden coastlines lined with colorful painted fishing boats to tiny, turquoise bays with soft white sands with a backdrop of lush green palm trees. For the more adventurous, Sri Lanka also offers a number of fantastic treks and nature walks where you can see the amazing wildlife on the island from herds of wild elephants, exotic birds, monkeys, and even leopards. 

Have you visited Sri Lanka before? Do you have any top tips for other travelers that you’d like to add? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Get the Best Value Accommodation: What to Do

If you want a holiday that isn’t going to eat away your budget before you’ve even started, you’ll want to make sure you get the best value accommodation. This will be one of your biggest expenses on your trip, but this post can help you to get the best value for money!

 

Compare on Travel Sites

Start off by comparing deals on travel sites. Looking on individual sites can also help, and on the site of the actual accommodation you’re considering. However, travel sites will do most of the hard work for you, so you can see the sort of price you’re looking at.

 

Compare Features

Although price matters, that isn’t all. Compare features and see what you’re getting for your money. For instance, one deal might be cheaper, but it might be self catering. If you can find a deal that costs slightly more with breakfast included, it could be worth it when you think of the money you’ll save on food.

 

Read Reviews

Reviews is the only way you’ll find out if a place is worth staying at. There are lots of impartial sites online where you can read reviews, so make sure you take a look before you part with your cash. Just bear in mind, no place will be 100% positive. They are unable to please everybody, so you’ll want to go for a place that has a majority of good reviews. Make sure you keep an eye out for make or break deals that will affect your stay.

 

Test Customer Service

If you’re thinking of booking somewhere, maybe try testing out the customer service first. You can call them up and ask a question, and see how they respond to you. If they can’t help you enough, you know you’ve found a great place! If they aren’t very helpful and appear uninterested, it may not be a good idea. This isn’t always the case, but it doesn’t hurt to try. If you don’t want any restrictions on your holiday, you may prefer to look at villas and holiday rental accommodation. They won’t always have staff/customer service staff to call, so you’ll have to call the owner of the villa instead if it’s private.  

 

Take Into Account Travel to and From

If you’re going to be travelling to a certain place for the majority of your stay, then take travel into account. Will you get buses, trains, or taxis? The closer the accommodation, the more money you’ll save. You’ll need to weigh up the pros and cons to work out whether it’s best staying somewhere closer or not. Research how you can save money on transport too - you might be able to buy a travelcard or something similar in advance.

If you want the best value accommodation, this is the only way to do it. Follow these steps and you’ll end up with a great place to stay and lots of your budget left over for the rest of your trip. Any tips you’d like to add? Leave a comment below! 


Sunday, June 7, 2015

5 Things You Should Do While in Iceland

A lot of people forget what Iceland has to offer, it’s not the most fashionable destination, but I’d recommend it to anyone. But here are 5 great things that you can do there!

1. Visit the Blue Lagoon

For those of you who like to relax and get pampered when you’re on holiday, Iceland has the perfect solution for you. The Blue Lagoon is the most extraordinary spa retreat on the planet. It’s totally natural and located in a lava field.

There’s a reason why it’s the most visited tourist attraction in all of Iceland. The waters are warm and rich with minerals, and some people believe that the water has healing effects. There is currently scientific research being carried out into how the water improves your skin.

Photo source: wikimedia.org

2. Explore the Galleries and Museums

Iceland’s capital city is Reykjavik, and it’s a city packed full of arts and culture. I’m serious, you could spend a few weeks getting around all the museums and gallery space that’s packed into the city. So, if you love art, you’ve found the perfect place to visit.

No matter what kind of art you love, there’s something for you in Reykjavik. If you’re into classic art, the National Gallery of Iceland should be your first stop. But if you prefer something a little more modern and left-field, try the i8 Gallery or The Living Art Museum.

3. See the Northern Lights

The Northern Lights are unpredictable and elusive, so you can never be sure that you’ll catch a glimpse of them, even if you want to. But when you do eventually see them, you’ll be glad you did. It’s one of the most incredible sights you’ll ever see.

By going to Iceland, you’ll have the best chance of seeing the lights. You can see them in many countries, but Iceland is one of the surest bets you’re likely to find in the northern hemisphere. So, don’t miss out!

4. Watch Wales

There are many places in Europe that offer whale watching experiences, but Iceland is one of the top destinations for it. The country has a history of whale hunting, and it’s now hoped that the country will look to make money from whale watching rather than killing the whales.

Anyone who has been whale watching before will know how magical and impressive it is when you first catch a glimpse of a whale. But some tour companies rarely even see a whale, luckily, the top whale watching companies in Iceland have a 90% success rate.

5. Go to the Gullfoss Waterfall

Gullfoss in Icelandic means Golden Falls, and that should give you a good idea of what to expect when you visit the Gullfoss Waterfall. It’s one of the most visited natural attractions in the country and it’s not hard to see why. You can spend all day gazing at its majesty.

The water falls in two stages, making the effect even more impressive. The first drop is 11 meters in height and the second is 21 meters. And when the sun is shining, you might be lucky enough to see the huge rainbow that appears over it too.

If you’ve never been to Iceland before, maybe these activities will convince you to go!


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Four Things You Have To Do While In Muscat

As you probably already know, I am a keen traveller. I love seeing and experiencing new things and travelling to new and exciting destinations.

One place I have not yet been to, but would love to visit is Muscat in Oman. It might sound like a bit of an odd travel destination, but it is definitely somewhere to put on your travel bucket list.

According to my research, Muscat, the capital of Oman is a little different to your average capital city. Instead of being just one large city, it is made up of many small towns and cities separated by serrated ridges. At the center of Muscat is old Muscat, a beautiful walled city and natural harbour, which is watched over by Jalali and Mirani, the twin fortresses.

For anyone, who like me, desperately wants to take a trip to Muscat. Here are four things you have to do while you are there:


muscat.jpgPhoto credit: wikimedia.org

1. Go to Muttrah Souq

Muttrah Souq is Muscat’s oldest marketplace; this covered shopping market is ideal for picking up authentic souvenirs and gifts. If you love to cook, this is the place where you can get all the best herbs and spices.

Like at any market, to get a good price, bartering is a must. Just make sure not to go too low and offend the shopkeepers.

2. Visit Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque

Set in peaceful gardens, Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is an absolute must-see. While you will probably drive past it on your way from the airport, it is definitely worth a proper visit.

With beautiful architecture and features, not to mention it’s enormous size, Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is truly stunning. One of the most amazing things about the mosque is its inside decoration, including it’s massive chandelier, which I have been told, is big enough to hold six men.

The best thing about the mosque is that it is completely free to visit, and anyone of any nationality or religion is encouraged to look around. There is even complimentary dates, sweetmeats, coffee, and chilled water handed around by the guides.

3. Old Muscat

Home to many majestic buildings and ancient forts, old Muscat is somewhere you just have to visit while in Muscat. Today, old Muscat is used as the administration area of Muscat but is still open to visitors.

During the day there are lots of things to see and do in old Muscat, but at night it is pretty much deserted, so it’s best to visit during the day. Instead of booking a hotel here, choose one of the many luxury hotels in Muscat - there are plenty of areas to choose from.

4. Go dolphin watching

If, like me, you have never seen a dolphin outside of captivity, then going dolphin watching is a must. You can book a dolphin watching boat trip from your hotel once you arrive or beforehand if you would prefer.

Most dolphin watching experiences include the cost of travel to the harbour and will pick you up and drop you off back at your hotel later on. How good is that?

There are many things I want to see and do when I get the chance to visit Muscat, but these are just a few.



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