When we plan for a travel, we normally put into consideration the more mature stuff like soul searching, relaxing and discovering new things as part of our main priorities. We often end up choosing a wildlife park, a remote island or a people-crowded beach and spend money and time on it for the sake of being able to travel.
Yes, we definitely would end up happy when we get to pick the more ‘ideal’ path, but have you asked your inner kid on where he/she wanted to go? Have you ever considered a theme park as your main destination? If not, and you’re planning to, peruse this magical place where you can end up feeling like a 10-year old again after you left its gates. Get your feet moving and your stomach churning with Six Flags San Antonio.
Six Flags San Antonio is a quick 15-minute ride from San Antonio Downtown. It is wedged between Interstate 10 and Loop 1604 by where you need to take Exit 555 La Cantera Parkway. The theme park’s specific address is at 17000 IH-10, San Antonio, Texas 78257.
Six Flags covers an approximate are of 200 acres of fun and excitement and is currently being one of the major entertainment parts of La Cantera, a well-planned development estate in northwest San Antonio.
Being part of San Antonio, Six Flags’ adapted climate takes on two ways — tropical and desert. Typically, when you visit Six Flags in the months of July and August, the sun would be your best friend as it shines at its zenith and let you enjoy the amusement park at best. The location where Six Flags is situated uncommonly experiences snow.
If you don’t have a strong affinity with heat and sunshine, choose the month of January as this is identified as the coldest all year long. Skim the veins of Six Flags at this month and never sweat your way to happiness and excitement, literally.
If you want to know if there is a mode of transportation inside Six Flags itself, then ask your feet to do you a huge favor in not giving up while staying there. Unlike Disneyland franchises, Six Flags don’t have their Disney buses careening inside the complex. The management deemed it inappropriate and would want to instill physical activity to their guests, thus, the absence of in-house transportation.
However, if you’re coming from Downtown San Antonio and other parts of nearby cities, you can board the VIA Metropolitan Transit bus which will drop you off in front of the theme park. Some hotels dotting Six Flags and nearby accommodations offer their own versions of servicing you in and out of the theme park at specific times and days.
What to See
If you’re one of the many theme park visitors who would want to experience the thrill and excitement of riding the highest rollercoaster and death-defying mechanical engineering, then pick the thrill rides bunch to start and cap your Six Flags visit.
Choose from selected and most patronized rides such as Batman: The Ride (world’s first 4D free-fly rollercoaster), Bahama Blaster (world’s steepest waterslide which ends on a Texas-shaped pool), Boomerang (a quirky kind of rollercoaster which will not lurch your forward, but backward), Frisbee (quite self-explanatory, imagine yourself seated on a giant Frisbee and being thrown at fast and gut-wrenching speeds), Goliath (if they can give a backward rollercoaster ride, experience this inverted this time, at 50MPH).
Be in touch with the family through Six Flags’ selected family-oriented rides which includes Gully Washer, Fender Bender, Hill County Racer, White Water Rapids, Mine Shaft, Ghostblaster, Whistle Stop, White Water Canyon, and Wave Runner.
Parents who want the kids to be enjoying while at par with their safety standards, don’t ever fret as Six Flags had a lot of rides made just for your kids.
Let your kid enjoy every inch of space in Six Flags with wholesome rides such as Buckarooz, Daffy’s School Bus Express, Bamboo Chutes, Kiddee Koaster, Kinderstein, Taz’s Tornado, Texas Treehouse, Up Up and Away and Zoomjets.
Dining and Shopping
Due to Six Flags’ humongous space, it will be such a bore if there are no restaurants or even a store present on its premises. When the day had been ultra tiring as you covered almost half of the total rides, be not afraid in regaining your energy through a course of selection for restaurants and eating chains.
There are clusters of All-American fare, vegetarian restaurants, places where you can experience Mexican, Asian and Italian cuisines. And if you want to also squeeze in some shopping on the side, options are available for souvenirs, apparel when you get splashed on their water rides, gifts for loved ones, toys and candies for the kids on your way back home and other shops that are Six Flags approved.
Six Flags Fiesta Texas, San Antonio
Narragansett is a humble city in Rhode Island. The Island is not as popular as other US destinations like New York or Las Vegas, but this spot is known for its beaches and summer recreation.
Narragansett is a settlement in Washington County, Rhode Island, USA. The town is informally branded as Gansett. The urban of Narragansett subjugates a slender strip of territory from the eastern tier of the Pettaquamscutt River to the coast of Narragansett Bay. In 1888, it was disjointed from South Kingstown, and promulgated as a town in 1901.
Narragansett catches 49 inches of rain in a year but typically, there are 207 sunny days per year in this island. Its hottest is around 81 degrees in July, while coldest is in January which measures down to 19 degrees.
Amtrak service is available to get you to Providence, Kingston and Westerly, Rhode Island, from other cities all over the Northeast Corridor. Another means of transportation is a seasonal 30 minute hi-speed ferry which leaves from Point Judith and reaches the town center of Old Harbor, Block Island.
WHAT TO SEE
Point Judith Lighthouse
This lighthouse was constructed in the early 1800s, so you just have an inkling that there’s a lot of history around it. Vacationers love this amazing lighthouse. You can just sit back and relax at an unobtrusive spot while you wonder at the lighthouse and take in the cool breeze and sounds of the ocean.
There’s a motivation why this is very prevalent among citizens. A lot of them will tell you that this is the town’s “selling point” because this is one of the main tourist spots in the city. Yes, you don’t even have to soak in the pristine waters of this beach.
You can just simply marvel at the sand and the other distant views. It really is one of the prime spots to visit in Narragansett. Why not think through taking a surfing lesson when it’s actually one of the first things that travelers do when they visit the beach. Warm Winds is one of the most reliable surf shops in the area and their surfing lessons are always a hit.
Camp at the Fishermen’s Memorial State Park & Campground
If your impression of pleasure is camping, then this abode has you covered. This is specifically right if you’re an aficionado of RV camping. You’ll get the best sights if you’re coming with an RV, including the comfort and convenience of course.
The best time to visit the campsite is during off-seasons if you want some peace and quiet, and the month of October is a good time to visit. Also, make sure not to camp at the first spot that you see. Make sure to travel around for a lot of other ideal sites.
Visit the Fishing Village of Galilee
You will definitely not get bored watching a lot of fishing vessels in this fishing village. If you find fishing pleasurable, this is one of the best things to do in Narragansett RI that you shouldn’t miss out. If you’re fortunate, your stay may even concur with the largest tuna derby in the world.
There are a lot of exciting and reasonably priced activities to do in Narragansett. And these are proof that you don’t have to break a piggy bank just to have a vacation worth remembering.
Narragansett Tourism: Best of Narragansett, RI
Narragansett, RI – Official Website
The Spanish wine region of Priorat is a remote and rocky place which is known as the birthplace of intense, minerally reds that many wine writers and collectors consider to be Spain’s most elite wines.
The distinctive slate-and-quartzite soil (locally called llicorella), an abundance of sunshine and an energetic group of young winemakers have earned the region a reputation as one of Spain’s most innovative, while the area’s pristine natural beauty and long history make it a fascinating place to explore.
Priorat is a small, dynamic wine region in Catalonia, north-eastern Spain.
There are several different micro-climates present. Generally, the climate is more extreme than most continental climate areas, though there is a marked contrast between the valleys and the higher areas.
There are both freezing winds from the north (mitigated somewhat by the Montsant mountain) and also the warm Mistral wind from the east.
Summers are long, hot and dry (max temperature 35°) while winters are cold (min temperature -4°C). There is the occasional risk of frost, hailstones and drought. The average annual temperature is 15°C, and average annual rainfall is 400–600 mm.
• BY AIR – Barcelona International Airport lies to the south of the city near El Prat. Most flights from Barcelona are European based. There is a fast shuttle service (puente aereo/pont aeri) which can take you to your connection in Madrid in half an hour.
• BY ROAD – The main motorway leading southwards out of Barcelona is a continuation of the Diagonal road. This road becomes the AP7 motorway.which turns inland towards Martorell. The motorway has a series of tolls, which makes the one and a half hour journey to the Priorat into a rather expensive one! After the final toll at Tarragona, you take exit 34 and head towards Reus which turns into the N420 and leads you up into the mountains and then down to Falset the capital of the Priorat region.
• BY RAIL – Barcelona International Airport is to be found to the south of the city near El Prat. There are regular trains from the airport to Sants station where you can catch a train (2 hour ride) from there to Marçà-Falset station. The line is the Barcelona-Caspe-Zaragoza line and there are five trains a day. The last train leaves Barcelona at 20.33 hours during the week and 17.33 hours at the weekend.
A visit to the beautiful Priorat wine region of Spain
Spain’s Priorat Wine Region: Small but Mighty | Into Wine
San Diego represents mellow California culture, full with a Boardwalk, surfing communities, and excellent Mexican food. After a long winter, it’s time to scrap off some layers and restock your vitamin D intake.
Gorgeous sunshine, moderately hot winds, and awesome beaches are calling from San Diego, and we’re enticing you to answer the call. Add some spring to your step and laud the season in San Diego!
San Diego is a dominant city in California, on the coast of the Pacific Ocean in Southern California, nearly 120 miles south of Los Angeles and directly bordering to the border with Mexico.
Inhale in the fresh ocean air at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, then gulp down a fresh fish taco at a La Jolla seafood joint. San Diego, the eighth biggest city in the country, is often mentioned to as “America’s Finest City” and for good reason!
Famous for its huge hotels and accommodations, amazing weather, primeval beaches, amiable people and a overabundance of amusement, San Diego is a popular travel destination for visitors around the globe.
San Diego is the birthplace of California and is known for its delicate year-round climate, natural deep-water harbor, thorough beaches, long association with the US Navy, and current development as a healthcare and biotechnology development center.
In 20,000 BC Hunting peoples of northeast Asia follow throngs of Caribou, bison, and mammoth across the current day Bering Strait, which at various points in this period is a grassy plain a thousand miles broad. They then move south along ice-free corridors into the American continents.
In May 1769, Gaspar de Portolà established the Fort Presidio of San Diego on a hill near the San Diego River. And on July 16, 1769, the first California mission, San Diego de Alcalá, was devoted.
Later, Serra went on to settle a string of 21 California missions, with some 5,000 Indian follower within their walls, before his death in 1784.
From the beginning of the 20th century through the 1970s, the American tuna fishing fleet and tuna canning industry were situated in San Diego, “The Tuna capital of the world”.
San Diego’s first tuna cannery was established in 1911, and by the mid-1930s the canneries hired more than 1,000 people.
San Diego is just 20 miles north of Mexico, located in the rolling hills and mesas that increase from the Pacific shore to unite with the Laguna Mountains to the east.
San Diego no longer selects to be characterized merely by 70 miles of beaches, greatest weather, a forward-leaning zoo, or its maritime history.
The city lies on generally 200 deep canyons and hills spliting its mesas, building small pockets of natural open space spread all over the city and offering it a bumpy geography.
The city masks a huge spot of immensely contrasting landscape: miles of ocean and bay shoreline, heavily forested hills, fruitful valleys, and mountains, canyons, and desert.
Downtown’s rebirth has been most breathtaking, arising in the Gaslamp Quarter, followed by a new ballpark in 2004 and block after block of restaurants, hotels, and condos, turning the city into a major convention destination.
In its 2013 ParkScore ranking, The Trust for Public Land reported that San Diego had the 9th-best park system among the 50 most populous US cities.
Some Places to Visit
Sea World San Diego— is an animal theme park, oceanarium, outside aquarium, and marine mammal park, located in San Diego, California, United States.
San Diego Zoo— this zoo in San Diego California houses over 3,700 animals of more than 650 species and subspecies, a perfect place for family and friends!
Balboa Park— is a 1,200-acre urban cultural park in San Diego, California, United States. It contains museums, several theaters, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo.
La Jolla Cove— The Cove is protected as part of a marine reserve; underwater it is very rich in marine life, and is popular with snorkelers and scuba divers.
Windansea Beach— stretch of coastline located in La Jolla, a community of San Diego, California.
Hotel del Coronado— A beachfront luxury hotel in the city of Coronado, San Diego California is just across the San Diego Bay where famous events, parties and conferences are usually held.
Official Travel Resource
City of San Diego Official Website
San Diego County
Pai is a tiny town in northern Thailand’s Mae Hong Son Province, close to Myanmar margin, about 50 miles/80 km north of Chiang Mai on the northern route to Mae Hong Son.
Pai is a chiefly tourism-oriented town, contributing a calmed atmosphere with a broad traveler and hitchhiker scene. Ride your motorbike a few hours into this mountain town for a relaxing weekend of zenning out at Rasta bars, napping in woven wharfs, and — if you can handle to abandon your field hut discovering the waterfalls and hot springs.
Pai pronounced more like the English ‘bye’, not ‘pie’ is just as fanous among Thais as foreigners.
During the spike of the cool season, thousands of Thais from Bangkok crowd into the town, preparing parts of it feel more like the Chatuchak Weekend Market than a far-flung village in Mae Hong Son.
There are piles of silent lodging outside the main drag, a host of ordinary, lethargic activities to keep visitors feasted, a lively art and music scene, and the town’s Shan roots can still be noticed in its temples, peaceful back streets and amusing afternoon market fair.
About 2,000 years ago, the Lua (or Lawa) Tribe was the main cultural group over all of the place of today’s northern Thailand, and a less of their offspring still inhabit in villages only about 20 km away from Pai.
The region now popularly known as Pai has been gradually occupied for more than 5,000 years. The written history of the place begins about 800 years ago with the organization of a conclusion about 3 km north of modern day Pai.
Nearly 800 years ago in 1251 BCE, a decision was made 3km (about 2 miles) north of Pai in an area currently known as Ban Wiang Nuea. In 1943, the Japanese started various projects to build effective military and machinery transfer course between Thailand and Burma in support of their projected attacks on Imphal and Kohima.
In 1967, the Thai government begun cultivating the road leading from Chiang Mai via Pai to Mae Hong Son, famous currently as Route 1095, but didn’t stop paving the route until the early to mid-1990s.
During the latest part of the 19th century, France and England, having already settled conclusions in Vietnam, Cambodia, Burma and Laos, were enhancing interested in the spot that is now Thailand.
How To Get There
There no traffic and you can hear the cars and trucks coming. If you’re a little daring, rent a motorcycle in Chiang Mai and make the ride up to Pai.
From Chiang Mai, ordinary public buses with no a/c take around 4 hours and charge 78 baht, and there is only one bus at 7am daily. The exclusive regulated mini-buses take around 3 hours.
Kan Airlines conducts flights between Chiang Mai and Pai in a twelve seater Cessna Caravan. Flying time is 25 minutes. Passengers can make bookings and buy tickets through the airline website, their call centres, or with a travel agent.
Must See Places
Wat Klang – It is ringed by Mon Chedies, below which Buddha pictures of the seven days a week can be seen in niches. A finial-topped Mandapa was created on the base of the main Chedi.
Wat Phra That Mae Yen – This is the notable sight for passenger on the plane to know that you are going in Pai boundaries.
Pai Canyon – The Valley has a dirt track that is best hiked in the morning or evening due to a lack of shade.
Tha Pai Hot spring – There are hot springs situated in Amphoe Pai area, named Muang Paeng Hot spring in Tambon Muang Paeng, Pong Ron Hot spring in Tambon Mae Hi and Pong Duat Hot spring in Tambon Tung yao.
All About Pai:
Playa Larga at Cuba
The Caribbean is a perfect vacation getaway. There many countries and islands situated at this impeccable place. All of them are equally beautiful and stunning.
Each offers a unique attraction and a different cultural heritage. It is a romantic place to go for a honeymoon or an adventurous place for friends.
Either way you wish to spend time at the Caribbean, it would definitely be worth it. Tourists would surely leave the country smiling filled with fun and wonderful memories of their adventure.
One place in the Caribbean that would certainly take you on an epic adventure is the country of CUBA.
The Republic of Cuba or simply Cuba is an island country situated in the Caribbean. The whole country comprises at least 4000 islands.
The biggest island, Isla de la Juventud is also the largest in the Caribbean area. Aerial view of the country shows that the main island is similar to a crocodile or an alligator; thus, the terms “El Cocodrilo” or “El Caima” are alternative names for the country.
Map of Cuba
The capital and largest city in the country is Havana or “La Habana” in Spanish.
In 2010 the population reached more than 11 million people. It is a multiethnic community composed of Europeans, Africans, and Native Americans.
Spanish is the official language in Cuba with majority of the population speaking the said language. Haitian Creole, Lucumi, Yoruba, Galician, and Corsican are other languages and dialects used in the country.
The predominant religion in the country would be Christianity and Catholicism. Other religious groups include Jews, Muslims, and Baha’i Faith.
Cuba is rich in history and culture. As a matter of fact there are nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country. The nine sites are:
• Alejandro de Humboldt National Park
Alejandro de Humboldt National Park (2)
Alejandro de Humboldt National Park is one of the nine World Heritage Sites in the country. The site was included in the list in 2001 due to “its size, altitude range, complex lithology, landform diversity, and wealth of endemic flora and fauna.”
• Desembarco del Granma National Park
Desembraco del Granma National Park (3)
Another national park included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site is Desembraco del Granma National Park. It was included in the list due to its matine terraces and pristine sea cliffs.
• Vinales Valley
Vinales Valley (4)
Aside from being a World Heritage Site, Vinales Valley is a famous tourist attraction because of the scenic view, caves, cliffs, and agriculture. Tourists love to hike and rock climb at this area.
• Urban Historic Centre of Cienfuegos
Cienfuegos Maurische Villa (5)
In 1819 the city of Cienfuegos was established. The city includes the Cathedral of Cienfuegos, Arch of Triumph, Botanical Garden of Cienfuegos, Reina Cemetery, Fortress of Nuestra Senora de los Angeles de Jagua, Tomas Acea Cemetery, a park dedicated to Jose Marti, Theatre Tomas Terry, and University of Cienfuegos. In 2005 it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Cienfuegos Jose Marti (6)
Cienfuegos Pargue Jose Marti (7)
• Trinidad and the Valley de los Ingenios
Valley de los Ingenios
The next World Heritage Site is a series of three valleys (San Luis, Santa Rosa, and Meyer) spanning 12 kilometers. The name of the site originated from the sugar cane mills in the said valleys.
It was included as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1988. Currently the sugar mills and some nearby infrastructures are left in ruins.
Structures such as the barracones and “Iznaga Tower” are still intact and maintained. The bell tower was built in the Spanish era and used to signify work and prayer time.
• San Pedro de la Roca Castle, Santiago de Cuba
Castillo del Morro (8)
San Pedro de la Roca Castle in Santiago de Cuba is also known as Castillo del Morro or Castillo de San Pedro de la Roca. It was built in 1637 as a fortress and defense.
Throughout years of destructions due to raids, attacks and natural calamities, the fortress was rebuilt and reconstructed. In 1997, the place was included in the list of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites.
• Old Havana and its Fortification System
Havana by night (9)
The Old Havana is located at downtown of the city. It is highly populated and one of the densest city in the country.
The city was established in 1519 by the bay. Because of its strategic location, the city became one of the main stopping point and shipbuilding centers in the area. Architecture of the city was inspired by baroque and neoclassical style.
Some of the places that should be seen include: Malecon, Castillo del Morro, La Cabana, San Salvador de la Punta Fortress, Castillo de la Real Fuerza, Catedral de San Cristobal, National Capitol, Galician Center, Plaza de Armas, Gran Teatro de la Havana, Museum of the Revolution, and San Francisco de la Habana Basilica.
Cathedral of Havana
Castillo de la Real Fuerza
• Historic Centre of Camaguey
The town of Camaguey was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008.They say the city was designed with many winding alleys as a defense against pirate invaders.
Aside from the winding alleys, a notable feature of the town is the clay pots used to collect rain water.
• Archeological Landscape of the First Coffee Plantations in the South-East of Cuba
The coffee plantations in south east of Cuba are one of the nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country. Their architectural, archaeological materials, infrastructure for irrigation, and water management are impressive and world renowned.
1. Hajor. Habana. September 2003. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
2. Zoohouse. Alejandro de Humboldt National Park. N.d. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
3. VIChapayey. Desembraco del Granma National Park. August 2008. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
4. Severin Stalder. Vinales Valley. November 2013. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
5. Polarlys. Cienfuegos Maurische Villa. December 2003. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
6. Polarlys. Cienfuegos Jose Marti. December 2003. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
7. DirkvdM. Cienfuegos Pargue Jose Marti. September 2006. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
8. Glogg, Peter. Castillo del Morro. N.d. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
9. Vitalia. Vieja de Noche. July 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
10. Danleo. Camaguey. January 2006. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 25, 2015.
Do not let the size of Taiwan fool you. It may be a compact country but there are a lot to see and do. Hopefully this short article can give justice on the beauty and simplicity of Taiwan.
Taiwan was formerly known as Formosa and occupied by Taiwanese aborigines. In the succeeding years Dutch, Spaniards, and Chinese started to settle in the islands. Aside from towering skyscrapers and cityscape, Taiwan is famous for the luscious greenery and panoramic views. Taiwan’s culture and entertainment is like no other.
Taiwan is an autonomous state in East Asia but governed by the Republic of China. The main island, which is in the shape of a sweet potato, comprises 99 percent of the state.
The remaining one percent of the nation are isles and islets including Pescadores or Penghu, Quemoy, and Matsu. To the west of Taiwan is China, to the east and northeast is Japan, and to the south is the Philippines.
Taiwan is generally a marine tropical country. From June to September Taiwan experiences a hot and humid summer with temperatures exceeding 30 degrees Celsius. On the other hand winters are cold and temperatures could drop as low as 8 degrees Celsius.
When visiting Taiwan, the best time would be from October to December. But be wary of these months because the country is usually battered by storms.
In 2013 the nation had a total population of approximately 23.4 million people. The large quantity of people living in such a limited space makes it one of the densest places.
Of the millions of people, majority or more than 95 percent of the population are Han Chinese. The official language is Mandarin and widely taught in schools.
Other languages spoken include Taiwanese Hokkien and Formosan language. As for writing, they use Traditional Chinese.
There is no strict religion and people are free to choose their own beliefs. The five largest religions are Buddhism (35.1 percent), Taoism (33 percent), Yiguandao (3.5 percent), Protestantism (2.6 percent), and Roman Catholicism (1.3 percent).
Banun dancer in traditional aboriginal attire
The easiest and most convenient way to get to Taiwan is via plane at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport near 40 kilometers southwest of Taipei.
Other airports include Kaohsiung International Airport – international flights are limited to Asian countries, Taipei Songshan Airport – serves only domestic flights, Taichung Airport, and Hualien Airport.
There are also airports at the islands of Makung, Taitung, and Kinmen. The official airline carrier of the country is EVA Air. Other airlines serving the country are AirAsia, Asiana Airlines, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Jetstar Asia, KLM Asia, Malaysia Airlines, TransAsua Airways and many more.
Since Taiwan is an island country, it is common to get to the country via boat. There are scheduled ferries and cruises to and from Hong Kong, mainland China, and Japan.
Getting around Taiwan is easy; there are various modes of transportation available.
One of which is the plane. There are regular and frequent flights to get in and out of the different Taiwanese Islands. Travelling via air to the islands is practical and the best option.
The second best way to travel around is via train. There are two train systems: Taiwan High Speed Rail and Taiwan Railway Administration. The train is the best option in long distance and intercity travels.
Buses are also available. Among the three modes of transportation this is the most affordable in long distance.
Taxis or yellow cabs are also very common on the streets of Taiwan. It is not difficult to hail a cab; the problem would be conversing with the driver. More often than not, Taiwanese drivers have difficulty in conversing English.
Other modes of transportation in the city include scooters, motorcycles, private cars, and bicycles.
WHAT COULD BE DONE IN TAIWAN
After discussing the basics of Taiwan such as the location, climate, the people and transportation we now proceed to what could be done in the country.
PARTICIPATE AND ENJOY THE FESTIVITIES
Taiwanese celebrated traditional Chinese festivals throughout the year. Listed below are a few of the popular Chinese festivals in Taiwan.
• Chinese New Year
Lion dance costume (3)
The highlight of all festivals is Chinese New Year. Chinese New Year is celebrated for fifteen days but the first three days are the most anticipated. During the three days majority of the shops and restaurants are closed.
• Ching Ming Festival
Ching Ming Festival is celebrated in honor of their deceased ancestors.
• Dragon Boat Festival
The Dragon Boat Festival was made in honor of Qu Yuan – a patriotic official who died by committing suicide at the nearby river when Chu was conquered.
The villagers would throw rice dumplings and beat drums on a dragon boat on the river to frighten fishes and prevent them from eating his body. From then own, the dragon boat racing and eating of rice dumpling had been a tradition.
• Hungry Ghost Festival
The Chinese believed that during this time the gates of hell are open and hungry ghost are free to roam around. To protect themselves, the people of Taiwan would offer them food and burn joss paper. Furthermore, to soothe these ghosts performances like the Chinese opera and Chinese shows were done.
• Mid-Autumn Festival
The tradition began when Chang E swallowed divine pills that prevented her husband from becoming immortal. She feared for her life and decided to escape to the moon. They say that the moon shines brightest during this day. To commemorate this, Taiwanese would hang colorful and beautiful lanterns along the streets, parks and shops. They would also east mooncake.
Moon cakes (4)
TAKE A TOUR AMONG FAMOUS LANDMARKS IN TAIPEI
• Taipei 101
Taipei World Financial Center or now called Taipei 101 is the most notable landmark in Taipei. It is a fusion between technology and Asian tradition. There are postmodern and traditional elements in the building.
As the name implies, there are 101 floors above ground and5 underground floors. In 2004 to 2009 it was the tallest skyscraper in the world. And in 2011 it was awarded with the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification; at the same time it was known as the “largest green building in the world.”
• National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall
National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall
National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall was constructed in honor of Chiang Kai-shek, a former president of the country. It is a national monument and a famous landmark and tourist attraction in Taipei.
• National Palace Museum
National Palace Museum (6)
A visit to the National Palace Museum would get tourists immersed with a unique Taiwanese culture. The museum is one of the national museums located in Taipei which showcases more than 695,000 antique art, sculptures, and artifacts. One can get a glimpse of China dating back to the Neolithic age to the late Qing Dynasty.
• Mengjia Longshan Temple
Mengia Longshan Temple (7)
Another interesting place in Taiwan is Mengjia Longshan Temple in Taipei. It was built by Chinese in 1738 and served as a place of worship.
Unfortunately the temple was destroyed due to earthquakes and fires. But luckily the Taiwanese rebuilt and reconstructed the said temple adding a few Taiwanese elements. Currently it is used as a Buddhist and Taoist temple.
VISIT NEIGHBORING CITIES AS WELL AS THEIR LANDMARKS
• Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village
Totem poles in Formosa Aboriginal Cultural Village (8)
Naruwan Theater (9)
The Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village is an amusement park in Nantou County. It is known for its unique theme – Formosan aboriginal culture. Inside the park tourists could enjoy rides and attractions such as the tallest free-fall ride in the country, the largest European gardens in Taiwan, and the bell tower.
• Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Center
Fo Guang Buddha at the Buddha Memorial Hall (10)
Another attraction in Taiwan is Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Center which is located in Kaohsiung City. It is a Buddhist cultural, religious and educational complex. It is best known for housing of the tooth relics of Gautama Buddha.
• Dragon and Tiger Pagodas
Dragon and Tiger Pagodas (11)
The Dragon and Tiger Pagodas were built in 1976 at Lotus Lake in Kaohsiung City. The two towers are named Tiger Tower and the other Dragon Tower.
Each tower has seven floors, with yellow walls, red pillars, and orange tiles. In front is a bridge connecting the towers to the shore. The inside of the pagodas are paintings showing Ksitigarbha.
ADMIRE THE BEAUTY OF NATURE IN TAIWAN
When it comes to nature, there are a lot of beautiful sights that tourists could visit.
• Qingshui Cliff
Qingshui Cliff (12)
Qingshui Cliff in Hualien County is a must see. It spans a total of 21 kilometers of coastal cliffs with heights averaging 800 meters. The highest summit is 2408 meters at Qingshui Mountain.
• Liyu or Carp Lake
Liyu or Carp Lake (13)
There are many beautiful natural places in Taiwan, one of which is Liyu or Carp lake in Hualien County. It is the largest inland lake in the area with measurements of 1.6 kilometers in length and 930 meters in width.
Tourists could enjoy different recreational activities like sailing, water sports, and biking. Aside from these recreational activities one could enjoy scenic views such as old logging trains, logging displays, and aboriginal culture.
• Shifen Waterfall
Shifen Waterfall (14)
Another scenic attraction is Shifen Waterfall in New Taipei City. The said waterfall has a height of 20 meters and a width of 40 meters. With this width, it is the broadest in Taiwan.
1. Trcheng. Taipei. September 2007. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
2. Undefined. Taiwan. February 2010. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
3. Irrawaddy. Lion dance costume. February 2003. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
4. Magnus Manske. Moon cakes. September 2006. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
5. Alton Thompson. Taipei 101. August 2007. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
6. Peellden. National Palace Museum. December 2007. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
7. Bgag. Longshan Temple. February 2011. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
8. Bgag. Totem poles in Formosa Aboriginal Cultural Village. March 2011. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
9. Bgag. Naruwan Theater. March 2011. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
10. Mk2010. Fo Guang Buddha at the Buddha Memorial Hall. January 2012. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
11. Bernard Gagnon. Dragon and Tiger Pagodas. March 201. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.1
12. Fred Hsu. CingShui Cliffs. November 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
13. Fred Hsu. Liyu or Carp Lake. November 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
14. Weihao. Shifen Waterfall. October 2006. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 18, 2015.
Mass tourism is the term used for a destination which has large amounts of visitors/tourists at one time. There are two categories of traveler in the world – the first one is the independent travel planner who likes to do things alone while the second one is the happy-go-lucky type who prefers that the whole travel arrangement be done for them.
Tactlessly, the second type is the root cause of all kinds of complications. Travel agencies offering wide arrays of tour packages are very rampant these days, and while there is no doubt that a package deal a have strong appeal to the general public, this also leads to mass tourism.
Huge numbers of people plunging on a few specific places on the globe unsurprisingly wear down, if we are not cautious. Mass tourism can be a massive stress on local natural wealth and resources such as landscapes.
The local people in mass tourism destinations are often forlornly ignored and at times sternly negatively impacted by the utter numbers and demands placed on them and the natural resources of their place.
Evidently, there is a massive economic advantage as we all know, tourism is big business. But if you give regard about the dwellers of the place you are visiting, then you should take into consideration an eco-option, wherein one takes into account the welfare of locals and makes unbiased and sustainable business.
In addition to this, why should you put up with multitudes? Why sit on an overcrowded beach like a cookie in a jar or push your way through busy throngs in a hotel or mall?
Are you one of those few who return to the same mass tourism locations for a package holiday year after year because of cheap cost and convenience? It is unhealthy to be wedged in a groove so perhaps it is time to consider doing something a little different, something you haven’t tried or gone to before.
I believe that mass tourism is a sign that many people are stuck in a collective pothole. We need to cultivate the idea of mindful travel and start to envision an enhanced alternative.
It will first and foremost entail hosts to wake up and see their world in a different way – not as a source to be ill-used, but as a revered abode to be protected and renowned for its exceptionality.
It is also imperative they initiate to view their patrons not as sheer components of consumption, but as guests in quest of being transformed and mended.
Our cognizant substitute is about a trifling volume, overcrowding, stress, obliteration and damage, and about stressing more significance, tenacity, worth, harmony and self-actualization. In short, not more but better.
What is Mass Tourism? An Attempt at Defining It
There are limitless options in travelling. One could opt to go to Europe and experience a sophisticated lifestyle or immerse in Mediterranean culture. Or they could visit Asia and take a unique experience in the Himalayas or bask along the shores of Thailand and the Philippines.
The Pacific region is also a perfect place to go for relaxation. And there are so many more places to visit. But for now, we shall travel to the land down under.
In the previous articles we have mentioned about Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth. Now we will visit the capital of Australia: CANBERRA.
Parliament House (1)
Canberra was assigned as the capital of the whole country to address the rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne. Being the capital, it houses important buildings and landmarks such as the Parliament House, High Court, government offices, schools, universities, museums, and library.
The city caters mainly to politicians, government officials, and students. The importance of the city could not be underestimated.
Aside from its political and academic contribution to the country, the city is important to tourist. Annually, there are thousands of locals and foreigners visiting the capital.
There are guided tours in and around government buildings, fall in love with art galleries, get inspired with nature including the man-made lake, and of course no tourists should miss the famous Floriade Festival.
Canberra is the capital of Australia which is located at New South Wales. It is approximately 280 kilometers southwest of Sydney and 660 kilometers northeast of Melbourne. The city occupies a total area of 814.2 square kilometers.
The experiences a dry continental climate which is characterized by warm to hot summers and cool to cold winters.
The hottest months are from December to February with temperatures ranging from 26 to 28 degrees Celsius. The coldest months are from June to August in which temperature drops to 0 degrees Celsius. The outskirts of the central business district experiences snow during winter which quickly dissolves.
Canberra is connected to other cities in New South Wales via plane, buses and trains.
Canberra International Airport serves as the easiest thoroughfare to the city. It serves domestic flights to and from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Gold Coast, and Perth. There is little difference in time travel between air and land transportation. it takes approximately three hours by road from Sydney and seven hours by road from Melbourne.
Once in Canberra, the main means of transportation is via buses, bicycles, and car.
Canberra International Airport (2)
WHAT TO SEE
Unlike other cities in Australia, the city of Canberra was planned: the buildings, monuments, museums, galleries, and even the man-made lake in the center. It was built and design as a fusion of esthetics and functionality.
Aside from the planned community, other amenities that tourists could enjoy are the garden, parks, and nature reserve. The garden city movement influenced the design and layout of the city of Canberra earning the title “bush capital.”
Here are a few of the must-see places in Canberra.
LAKE BURLEY GRIFFIN
Lake Burley Griffin as seen from Black Mountain Tower (3)
Hot air balloon flying over Lake Burley Griffin and National Carillon (4)
As mentioned earlier Canberra is a planned city with an artificial lake at the center known as Lake Burley Griffin. The artificial lake measures 11 kilometers long by 1.2 kilometers wide.
The lake’s depth ranges from 4 to 18 meters. Water flow is regulated by the Scrivener Dam. The lake is popular for activities such as rowing, fishing, and sailing.
AUSTRALIAN WAR MEMORIAL
Australian War Memorial (5)
In honor of their fallen heroes the government built the Australian War Memorial. It showcases gallery exhibits, memorabilia, personal stories, combat displays, research facilities and a sculpture garden. The memorial is divided into three: the Commemorative Area or shrine, Memorial’s galleries or museum, and Research Centre or records.
Parliament House (6)
Perhaps the most prominent facility in Canberra is the Parliament House. The shape of the building was inspired by two boomerangs and an 81 meter flagpole at the center. There are guided tours that allow visitors to enter inside the parliament and see some of the rooms.
NATIONAL GALLERY OF AUSTRALIA
National Gallery of Australia (7)
The National Gallery of Australia, formerly known as Australian National Gallery is the country’s national art museum. It is the home to at least 166,000 artworks making it the largest art museum in Australia. Some of the collection includes Australian art, western art, eastern art, modern art, Pacific art, photography, crafts, and a sculpture garden.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AUSTRALIA
National Museum of Australia (8)
Another museum worth visiting is the National Museum of Australia. As a matter of fact, in 2005 and 2006 the museum was names as Australia’s Major Tourist Attraction by the Australian Tourism Awards.
The museum is all about Australia’s social history including 50,000 years of indigenous heritage, and key events such as Federation and the Sydney 2000 Olympics. Other exhibits in the museum include Aboriginal bark paintings, stone tools, bushrangers, and surf lifesaving.
QUESTACON – THE NATIONAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY CENTER
An attraction fit for children as well as those young at heart is the Questacon – the National Science and Technology Centre. The exhibit here include 200 interactive displays all connected with science and technology.
National Carillon (10)
At the center of the artificial lake, Lake Burley Griffin is an artificial island known as Aspen Island. The most prominent and notable landmark of the island is the National Carillon. The National Carillion has a total of 55 bells each weighing seven kilograms and six tones.
BLACK MOUNTAIN TOWER
Telstra Tower (11)
Telstra Tower or Telecom Tower is now known as Black Mountain Tower. Aside from being a telecommunication tower, it is an observation deck. Situated atop Black Mountain, it offers a panoramic view of the surroundings.
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL BOTANIC GARDENS
Australian National Botanic Gardens (12)
If one wants to experience and see nature including Australian flora, one must visit the Australian National Botanic Gardens. It occupies a total of 90 hectares with over 5,500 species making it the largest collection of Australian vegetation. Aside from showcasing plants, the botanic garden is also used as a research and cultivating facility.
Commonwealth Park (13)
Another famous and loved attraction is Commonwealth Park. It occupies a total area of 34.25 hectares, including ponds, bike trails, sculptures, and more. It is famed for the annual spring Floriade festival.
Floriade Festival in 2001
Floriade in 2013 (14)
Canberra receives thousands of visitors annually especially during mid-September to mid-October which coincides with the Floriade Festival. Floriade Festival is also known as “Australia’s Celebration of Spring.” The first Floriade festival started in 1988, and since then, there had been an annual celebration at Commonwealth Park. The park is filled with flowers, sculptures and artistic features.
1. JJ Harrison. Parliament House Canberra, Australia. July 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
2. Bidgee. New terminal building at Canberra Airport. January 2011. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
3. JJ Harrison. Canberra from Black Mountain Tower. August 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
4. Magnus Manske. Balloon and National Carillon. March 2007. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
5. Magnus Manske. Australian War Memorial. April 2008. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
6. Jjron. Parliament House, Canberra. September 2008. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
7. Nick-D. National Gallery of Australia. October 2012. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
8. Politas. National Museum of Australia. January 2006. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
9. Bidgee. Questacon. January 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
10. Bidgee. National Carillon. January 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
11. Bidgee. Telstra Tower. January 2009. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
12. Fir0002. Rainforest walk national botanical gardens. December 2005. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
13. Magnus Bot. Commonwealth Park. August 2005. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
14. Ashishlohorung. Floriade Canberra 2013. October 2013. Commons.wikimedia.org. Photograph. March 4, 2015.
Europe is swiftly becoming the most popular and most visited tourist destination in the world. In ancient Greek mythology, Europa was a Phoenician princess whom Zeus abducted after assuming the form of a dazzling white bull. So, Europe was a mythological queen of Crete, and not a geographical designation.
This great continent is endowed with its world renowned cities, with hundreds of years of history rubbing shoulders with modernism.
London is the capital and most populated city of England and the United Kingdom. London has so much to offer to tourists that one visit may not be enough to admire its beauty and splendor. The best way to go around this city is using the Tube.
The rapid transit system connects the entire city and you can use it to go from one attraction to the other easily. Here are a few of the popular attractions in London.
The Buckingham Palace (1) is the London residence and primary workplace of the monarchy of the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is frequently at the midpoint of state junctures and royal hospitality.
British Museum (2)
Churchill War Rooms (3)
Tower of London (4)
The London Eye (5)
St. Paul’s Cathedral (6)
Rome, universally known as City of Seven Hills, is the capital of Italy and has a history that dates back to Julius Caesar. This city can indisputably enchant visitors with its enigma and magic. It is both transcendent and modern with museums and churches alongside designer storefronts and lustrous hotels.
The best way to go around this city is by foot as most of the tourist attractions are bunched together in areas that are at liberty of traffic. You can also use the metro or taxi to tour from one place to another. Tourist attractions in this city include the following:
The Colosseum or Coliseum, also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre is the largest amphitheater in the world, and is considered one of the paramount works of structural design and engineering. (7)
Trevi Fountain (8)
St. Peter’s Basilica (9)
Further captivating spots in Rome include the Basilica di San Clemente, Church of San Luigi dei Francesi, Santa Maria della Vittoria, Trastevere, Gianicolo Hill, Appian Way, Piazza Navona, Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, Campo de’ Fiori, , Roman Forum, Spanish Steps, Galleria Borghese, and Porta Portese.
Paris on the other hand is recognized as the City of Lights which entices millions of tourists each year. The city is renowned for fashion, food, world class museums and art collection. The popular attractions include :
The Eiffel Tower
Cathedrale de Notre Dame de Paris (10)
Versailles Palace (11)
Aside from these, we also have Paris Catacombs, Centre Pompidou Musee du Louvre, Le Marais, Sacred Heart Basilica of Montmartre, Musee d’Orsay, Arc de Triomphe, Palais Garnier – Opera National de Paris, Pere-Lachaise Cemetery, Musée Rodin, and Champs-Élysées.
Amsterdam is tagged as the ultimate destination for romantic getaways, and the best way to get around this city is by using bicycles. The city includes the State Museum, Van Gogh Museum, Artis Zoo, The Resistance Museum, Nine Little Streets, Red Light District, Science Center NEMO, Zandvoort, and Museum Het Rembrandthuis. Amsterdam also showcases Vondelpark, the famous Anne Frank House, and the Heineken Experience.
Anne Frank House
Berlin is a city that sprawls in an artistic renaissance. The immense architectural, historical and natural sights make it one of the most fascinating tourist spots in Europe. Attractions in this city include Viktoriapark, Berlin Zoo, Parliament Reichstag Building, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Tiergarten, Brandenburg Gate, Potsdamer Platz, Pergamonmuseum, TV Tower, Checkpoint Charlie Museum, East Side Gallery, and Charlottenburg Palace.
Parliament Reichstag Building
Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
Europe is a continent of dreams, and complete your Euro trip with these spectacular destinations.
Best Places to Visit in Europe:
17 Most Amazing Places To Visit in Europe:
3. Churchill War Rooms http://eugene.kaspersky.com/2013/04/30/the-smell-of-history/
4. Tower of London en.wikipedia.org
5. London Eye sebizacharia.wordpress.com
6. St. Paul’s Cathedral www.boomsbeat.com