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Best Wine Tours In The USA 2020

Are you a wine enthusiast living in the USA? Have you always had the dream of enjoying the best wine in a vineyard or wineries of the US? Wine is one of the most preferred drinks by people around the globe.

While the most exquisite and expensive wines are available easily today, the experience of enjoying authentic and local wine in the vineyard of the USA stands out.

Owing to it, there has been an increase in the number of people going for wine vacations.

If you are planning to explore the best wine tours, head to the USA, where you can find the best wine tours. Read on to find out the best wine tours in the USA.

Best Wine Tours In The USA Antique cellar with aged wine bottles
Antique cellar with aged wine bottles

What are Wine Tours?

Wine tours are becoming famous with the connoisseurs who wish to have a holistic experience. People are willing to travel to famous wineries that are renowned for producing special wines, and enjoy them in the wineries.

The wine tours allow you to sit with professionals and indulge in a wine tasting while enjoying delicious meals.

You can discuss the characteristics of wine with the other enthusiasts and have a rewarding experience. Besides that, you can take a tour through the vineyard and see the grapes, the warehouses that store the barrels of wine, tasting rooms, and also the laboratories.   

Best Wine Tours In The USA

Which are the Best Wine Tours in the USA?

Unlike popular opinion, France is not the only destination for wine lovers. You can find an abundance of exquisite wineries and wine tours in the USA as well. While you are in the states, you must also try the premium Stagg Jr. bourbon (well, yes, that is an alternative). 

Here are some wine tours you can experience:

1. Boston’s North End Little Italy Wine Tasting Walking Tour

The North End in Boston is a historic area dotted with wineries and wine trails. While the locals are familiar with the best places to visit for wine, it can become a cumbersome task for you.

The North End Wine Tour takes you through the historic neighborhood and includes a visit to the premium local restaurant and wineries. You get to experience the exquisite wines of Italy in Little Italy, right here in Boston.

Duration: 2 Hours.

2. DC: Walking Tour With Beer, Cheese, and Wine Tasting

Based on a column from ‘The New York Times,’ the wine tour is the best to get a quick sneak-peak into Washington DC. The tour guide takes you from the Library of Congress, where you can get enlightened about the capital city of the USA.

You will then head to the Eastern Market, which is home to some of the best wine and beer joints. Relish the local cuisine and desserts, while discussing local politics in the most historical area of the USA.    

Duration: 4 Hours

3. Wine Tour From Sedona To the Vineyards of Verde Valley

If you are in northern Arizona, this luxury wine tour is the best thing you can experience. The tour takes you from Sedona to the three of the most glorious wineries in Verde Valley. You get to travel in comfortable and luxurious vehicles and hop from wineries. At each vineyard, you get to spend 1 hour and 20 minutes on average and enjoy the most expensive wines along with snacks.

Duration: 5 Hours.

4. Willamette Valley Wine Tasting From Portland

Willamette Valley lies in the foothills of picturesque hills of Portland and takes you away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is famous as home to distinct and elegant variations of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Gris.

The tour takes you to three of the best wineries of the valley in luxurious vans and allows you to explore the world of wine. You can enjoy wine tasting with mesmerizing views of the valley, along with thorough and informative narration from the guide.

Duration: 6 Hours and 30 Minutes

Best Wine Tours In The USA
Tuscany vineyard

5. The Perfect Blend: Napa And Sonoma County Combo Wine Tour From San Francisco

The Napa Valley and Sonoma Country are two of the renowned regions of the USA that follow age-old traditions of winemaking. This wine tour from San Francisco gives you the perfect opportunity to explore the best of both the regions.

The expert guides you to three boutique wineries, which offer an exquisite selection of both red and white wines.

You get a first-hand experience of the history and viticulture of the best wine region. If you think that’s all, you are mistaken. The tour also includes a drive over the infamous and scenic Golden Gate Bridge.

Duration: 9 Hours.

6. Half-Day Wine Country Experience

If you don’t have an entire day to take a wine tour, you can opt for this affordable half-day trip adventure from San Francisco.

The winery tour transports you into the heart of Sonoma Valley, but not before experiencing the majestic Golden Gate Bridge.

It includes a visit to two famous wineries, where you get to explore the estate while sipping on local wines. Your guide will inform you about the production, aging, and bottling process of your favorite wines.

Duration: 5 Hours.

7. Napa Valley Tasting With Robert Mondavi Winery

The tour is more like a holistic education about the never-ending world of wines. It includes a detailed tour through four wineries in the Napa Valley region.

The tour includes a visit to the world-famous Robert Mondavi Winery, which is among the first wineries that offered a wine tasting in the valley.

You get the chance to taste premium wines at every winery and also explore the boutique shops once you are done. 

Duration: 9 Hours.

Best Wine Tours In The USA Wine pairing with cheese and salami
Wine pairing with cheese and salami

8.   New York City SoHo Wine Tasting Walking Tour

The SoHo district of New York City is brimming with vibrant food and wine joints that make up an excellent walking tour.

You can join a guide, who is an expert at wines, to take you to two different dining locations.

Here, you get to try the best wines from around the globe along with scrumptious food. You can compare the wines, discuss with experts, and have an intimate experience in the heart of New York.    

Duration: 2 Hours.

9. The Private Malibu Wine Tour

The coastal city of Malibu is famous not only for its beaches but also for its exquisite wine grapes. The private tour entails a journey along the coastline with three distinct wine tastings.

You can sample the finest wines and pair them with a selection of cheese, fruits, and bread for a gastronomic adventure.

The magnificent coast of Malibu forms the perfect backdrop for your wine tour, and you can enjoy a hearty picnic while listening to insights about the region.  

Duration: 5 Hours

Best Wine Tours In The USA
Old wine bottles stored in an old cellar

Final Thoughts on Best Wine Tours in the USA

A wine tour can be the most exhilarating experience for a wine lover.

The feeling of sitting amid the endless grapevines, learning about the age-old traditions of winemaking, while sipping on the fresh and local wines, adds up to an adventure of a lifetime.

If you consider yourself an enthusiast, it is time to get an authentic experience through a tour.

You can book any one of the wine tours mentioned above and head to the destinations in the USA to embrace your love for wine.

6 Proven Habits to Sleep Better at Night

Do you struggle when it comes to sleep better at night? Approximately 70 million Americans experience sleep-related problems each year. Finding a solution for the sleep issues you are currently dealing with is crucial.

The longer you allow insomnia, snoring, or other sleep problems to rob you of your rest, the harder it will be to avoid serious health issues.

Luckily, there are a number of ways you can address common sleep problems on your own. Here are some habits you need to adopt if you want to get a better night’s sleep.

Also, read the following for sleep disorders, how to best sleep in a plane, breathing exercises for sleep, and how to use this device for better sleep.

Start Relaxing Before Bedtime Arrives

Proven Habits to Sleep Better at Night
Close all devices, 2-3 hours before going to sleep

One of the main reasons why most people can’t get to sleep at night is due to their mind racing from one subject to the next.

If you are having problems cutting your brain off at night, it is time to develop a wind-down routine.

This routine should consist of things like brushing your teeth, getting into your nightclothes, and laying in bed for a while.

During this wind-down time, avoid looking at your phone or watching television. Avoiding this type of stimulation can help you slow your mind down and get to sleep.

If you start to notice it is hard to relax due to a worn-out mattress, you need to take action.

Finding the best mattress will require some online research. Investing in a new sleep surface can help you sleep better at night.

Have Pre-Determined Sleep and Wake Times

Flying by the seat of your pants when it comes to your sleep schedule is a horrible idea. If your body isn’t on a particular schedule, it will be hard to stay asleep.

This is why establishing both sleep-wake times is so important. If you have a full-time job, your wake time should be the same Monday through Friday.

The trick is choosing a bedtime that allows you to get plenty of rest before you have to get up and head to work.

Finding the right balance in the sleep/wake times universe will take time, but it will be worth it because you will sleep better at night.

Caffeine is Not Your Friend At Bedtime

Millions of Americans drink coffee on a daily basis.

For most people, having a few cups of coffee each day gives them the energy they need to stay productive. While having this delicious drink throughout your workday is acceptable, you need to avoid it at night.

Drinking a cup of coffee can keep you up all night. It is best to from any drinks period an hour or so before bedtime.

Avoiding fluids can help you stay asleep without worrying about frequent trips to the bathroom.

Controlling Your Stress is Imperative

Proven Habits to Sleep Better at Night
Meditate and relax before sleep (or in the morning)

Being an adult living in modern society can be extremely stressful.

Working a job, raising a family, and maintaining a home can take a lot out of a person. If you allow your stress levels to get too high, it could start affecting your sleep schedule. Controlling your stress will require the help of medical professionals.

Taking medication to control anxiety and stress is something millions of people do. With the right medicine in place, calming down and getting rest will be simple.

Just Say No To Daytime Naps

Most people seem to start feeling a bit tired in the afternoon. If you work a physically demanding job, it may be hard to wait until nighttime to sleep.

Constantly napping during the daytime can affect your ability to sleep well at night.

If you are noticing bouts of insomnia after a string of daytime naps, it is time to get a handle on this problem.

Avoiding the naps will make you even more ready for bed at night, which is what you want.

More Physical Activity is a Good Thing

Proven Habits to Sleep Better at Night

An overwhelming number of Americans live very sedentary lives.

If you work in front of a computer all day without any physical activity, it is only a matter of time before health problems start to surface. Rather than waiting until you are in the throes of a full-on medical emergency, you need to start getting active.

Incorporating more exercise into your daily routine is crucial when trying to stay healthy. Not only will routine exercise keep you healthy, it will also help you sleep better a night.

It’s Time to Put Sleep Problems to Bed

As you can see, a number of changes need to be made to address sleep problems.

While these changes will be difficult at first, it will get easier as time goes by.

If you want to sleep better at night, you have to use all of the resources at your disposal to fix your sleep issues.

How to Travel With Kids Best Tips 2020

Families that travel with kids have to shoulder a lot of responsibilities beginning from carrying enough food, medicines, and the best umbrella stroller.

Who doesn’t want to be a part of the family that travels the world? Most families love to travel but often feel uncomfortable traveling with kids.

We can’t deny that it is not easy but with some guidelines in mind, you can have the best time of your life. Kids are a bit of a problem to handle even at home. Think about how careful you have to be on a trip.

Family travel is bliss and does not let anything become an impediment to it. In fact, let your children be a part of it. Travelling enriches the character of the child and infuses in them a sense of adventure. And trust us when we say they will be eternally grateful to you for the gift of travel.

However, make sure you check the following boxes before leaving home:

Medicines 

Medicines are essential for both adults and children but even more so for children. If possible, visit your child specialist a couple of days before you embark on a journey and get him/her checked for any underlying complexity.

Children are often afflicted with diarrhea due to change of place and weather, most of the time it isn’t anything serious but do not forget to carry the medicine prescribed. Also carry medicines for fever, flu, vomiting, etc. 

However, do not make your child pop pills at the slightest discomfort. Gauge the needs of the child before resorting to any kind of medicine.

Family travel with toddlers can be a bit tricky if you are not aware of the pulse and temperament of your child. We suggest you plan a trip when you are almost sure of the needs of your child.

Travel With Kids: Clothes

travel with kids

Whoever tells you to pack light when traveling with a kid, please ignore them? You will find it even more inconvenient to feel lost in the middle of a trip with lesser clothes than carrying more.

Family travel in a car is, therefore, a great option if you are traveling with a child. That saves you the hassle of carrying bags around. Carry enough sets of clothes so that if somehow your child soils a set, you can easily change the clothes without having to worry about washing the clothes right then.

Carry enough diapers and wipes. Even if your child can control his/her bowels it is not always safe to pee anywhere as they may contract infections, especially if yours is a girl child.

And sometimes it is also difficult to find a restroom at the middle of the road. Also if they soil the hotel beds, it would be embarrassing for you and hectic to clean up.

If you plan for hiking with kids, then you will need some extra clothing for that.

Train Your Little Dragon

travel with kids

Family travel is important but safety is foremost. You and your family will likely meet new people in the course of your travel diaries.

People are often fascinated by children and will want to make friends with your little munchkin, which is alright but make sure you taught them well about people.

Family travel adventures can very easily turn unpleasant if enough precautions are not taken.

Train your children not to entertain over-enthusiastic people and not to accept anything from strangers without the supervision of elders. 

Ask them not to believe in anything that a stranger may say if they are alone by chance. You can also allow a password to them and ask not to trust anyone who proves unable to produce it.

Teach them about good touch and bad touch.

Teach Them Basics

travel with kids

Make them memorize your name and phone number. If they are too small or keep forgetting, write in down and attach to their belts or pockets.

This way you make sure that even if they get lost, they would be able to fetch help. However, teach them to fetch help only from informed people if possible. 

However, a family that travels together with a kid, their first priority must be to keep an eye on them and never lose sight even for a minute. 

Things to Carry

travel with kids

Family travel around the world with kids and there are a few basic things that you must purchase before embarking on a journey or carry if you already have them.

First and foremost get the best umbrella stroller for your little one.

How would you like the idea of carrying your kid around all day? Family vacations are for relaxation and going without an umbrella stroller is a very bad idea, trust us! 

Make sure you take at least three feeding bottles, cups, and bowls for your baby. Often things tend to get lost on tours and you do not want to risk using plastic or other material to feed your baby. 

Disinfectants are a must. No matter how clean your hotel may be, you can never be more careful. Sprays are the best and come at a cheap price. Read this post on how to stay healthy when you travel.

Spray on tables, chairs, curtains, bed, and anything that your baby is likely to touch. 

Carry some of your kid’s toys to keep him/her occupied for the times you want to spend time with your partner or other members of the family. 

Things To Avoid When You Travel With Kids

You may be full of family travel ideas but make sure you keep some crucial things in mind.

Choose a spot that does not involve many risks or physical strains like hiking, jungle safari, and scuba diving. Etc. instead choose safer places like beaches, gardens, etc. 

Avoid having too much booze or partying as it would, first, take away quality time you should spend with your child, second, it increases the chance of your child losing its way. 

Pack less of your clothes. Since you have to carry a lot of babe clothes, cut down on your luggage, and pack light.  

Avoid too long trips and try a weekend trip or maximum a week long. Kids tend to get homesick faster than adults. 

Follow The Food Regime

We do understand that traveling is also about exploring food and different cuisine. Hence it could be difficult for you to maintain the food schedule of your child, but do try.

Look for family travel packages that have special food facilities for children.

Some excellent companies out there take care of the baby food regime and provide food likewise. All you need to do is inform them beforehand. 

Travel On Budget

travel with kids

Try to avoid extravagant trips with your kid. Family travel on a budget that isn’t too high is the best way to travel around.

For example, if you make a trip to Paris with your kid and fail to look around the museums and cafes because let’s face it, children are impatient, you would only regret it. So keep it short and simple. 

Make sure you have a family travel health insurance before setting out. It is often ignored and people have reported having landed in great trouble due to their ignorance.

Don’t be those people. You do not want to take risks with your baby. 

Family travel around the world to instill in each other a sense of bonding and it is through these travels that often parents find a friend in their kids and vice versa.

Share with us your experience of traveling with kids in the comment section.

We love to hear from you.  

10 Best Places for Couples to Travel in the US

There is nothing better than planning for a romantic getaway with your beloved partner at the best places for couples to travel in the US.

And it turns all the better when you visit the beautiful and breath-taking locales in the US. You and your better-half can begin a new life, starting with a romantic honeymoon.

And what is a better choice than the US.

According to various reviews, the US ranks the best domestic honeymoon spots.

There are several cost-effective and amazing holidaying spots in the US where the couple can rejoice their romantic rendezvous, without much planning.

Right from the vacation spots with sun-kissed beaches of Hawaii and San Francisco to the coffeeshops of York city, or the adventurous hikes at the rocky terrains of San Diego or North Carolina – you can cherry-pick your most-favored one.

And, of course, Read below the list of ten such places for a dream-like vacation, which the loving couples of the US can enjoy to the fullest.

Asbury Park, New Jersey

Ashbury Park is just perfect for the music-loving and adventure-seeking couples. It is the cultural hub, based on the coastline of New Jersey.

The pair can enjoy a romantic date by booking a table at the Ashbury Hotel. While dining here, they will get a combined feeling of ‘rock-n-roll’ culture with Victorian times.

They can also celebrate their ever-lasting relationship by taking a cozy stroll at Ashbury Park or planning to watch a movie.

Sedona, Arizona

Sedona Hills
Sedona Hills

How about breakfast in the middle of the rocky terrains of Sedona in Arizona, with your soul mate? Or a candle-lit dinner in one of the well-known eateries overlooking the red rocks of Sedona Boynton Canyon?

Among the famous red rocks of Sedona, there are a handful of lavish resorts where you can plan to spend some good time with your loved one.

Sedona is one of the best places for couples to travel in the US.

And, it is one of the dream destinations for most. Plan a couple of weeks ahead of time to avail the best of all in Sedona.

The Black Hills, South Dakota

Black Hills
Black Hills

The couples of the United States can opt for a romantic trip with some adventure in it by planning to visit South Dakota‘s Black Hills.

Pack all your stuff in the car roof racks and head towards the magnificent romantic hide-out of the Black Hills.

Enjoy the picturesque locales and get the view of the majestic sculptures in the mountains while driving.

Plan for camping under the star-lit sky, on the thick greens and pomegranate towers! Make your moments to closeness an unforgettable one. 

Kauai

Kauai
Kauai

How about a small campaign on the island of Kauai?

This beautiful island is no bigger than a coconut palm tree, literally. So, you explore the place on foot with your soulmate. It is one of the oldest amongst the chain of Hawaiian Islands.

Thus, the beautiful beaches, clear blue skies, and pristine sea will never disappoint both of you. A weekend trip is more than sufficient to explore the beauty and celebrate your friendship.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport, Rhode Island, got the position 10 in my list of best vacation spots in the US for couples. 

Plan to spend a weekend, relaxing on the sun-kissed beaches of Newport, Rhode Island. Explore this historic coastal island with your partner, and fall in love once again! Avail the 

With amiable holiday resorts, their lavish dining options, go for quiet walks along the sea-side and witness the picturesque twilights with your partner.

Newport is the right place for those trying to get hold of a perfect romantic location to spend some fruitful time together.

To make your weekend more memorable, opt for a ride in Sloop Eleanor, to get the lifetime experience on a private cruise during the sunset.

Enjoy the moments of togetherness with delicious eats with sparkling red wine served by Sweet Berry Farm. 

Santa Monica, California

Santa Monica
Santa Monica

California‘s Santa Monica generally tops the list of most of the happy couples in the US. It is one of the best places for couples to travel in the USA.

Spend an entire day shopping, at the arcade just a couple of minutes away from the city’s breath-taking Third Street Promenade.

Enjoy a romantic candle-light dinner at one of the beach shacks. Appreciate the evening with the newly-defined tradition by selecting your favorite food from the assortment of teas, caviar, glittering champagne, high-end cocktails, soft muffins, and delicious sea-food.

Later, walk on the beaches, and enjoy the sea waves with the Pacific Ocean as a backdrop.

Napa Valley

Napa Valley
Napa Valley

Now, this place is for wine-loving couples. While heading towards Highway 29, you will come to witness many Californian wineries.

Please take a tour inside one of the wineries and visit their wine-making areas. Taste the goodness of some sparkling red with your beau.

Opt for a guided tour to make the most of your trip to the wineries of Napa Valley.

You can also transform your romantic vacation into a profitable one, by visiting the royal casinos of Las Vegas.

Explore the unexpected with your beau, and make the nights immemorable.

Plan accordingly, and get a life-time experience in the City of Lights’ spectacular dance shows, waterparks, strips points, and of course the ever-engaging casinos.

Once out on the streets of Vegas, you relish the lavishness and extravagance at every corner!

Nashville

Nashville is for those who are looking forward to spending some fun-filled evenings with their girlfriend.

It is one of the happening romantic getaways amongst American couples. The music-loving couples will appreciate the unique attributes of Nashville’s museums with musical and night themes.

The John Cash Museum caters to the extravagance of artistic genius. His artistry gave the world the famous ‘Ring of Fire’ and ‘Walk the Line.’

Be one of the spectators and plan to take a backstage tour. Get the lifetime experience of the age-old radio show of the US with your loving partner.

New Orleans

Best Places for Couples to Travel in the US

New Orleans is well-known for its unique state-of-art architecture. Plan for a walk through the alleys to experience the strong influence of French and Spanish.

For some moments, you might get a feeling of visiting one of the European cities! Apart from the European impact and the cultural attributes of Creole, New Orleans’ cuisine is extraordinary.

The gourmet scene has taken a considerable leap in recent years, turning New Orleans into one of the most sought-after places to visit amongst the American Couples.

The fine arts have recently evolved, making the art-lovers visit the city, at least once with their partners.

Get a glimpse of the budding local artists to sell their creation while traveling to many parts of New Orleans.

And not to forget the memorable walks in the French Quarter. Spent time with your girlfriend eating delicious beignets, jambalaya, crab meat, or shrimp Po’boy.

While at New Orleans, a classic boat-ride is a must. You can admire the city’s beauty, situated at the tip of Mississippi. Click photos to create memories forever.

Savannah

You can plan for a week-long trip to the Savannahs with your partner.

Take a stroll through the Jones Street and attractive and beautiful Forsyth Park with your soulmate. You both will get the know-how of some historic sites once at savannah.

The ancient pre-war architecture, the Spanish moss, and the delicious local cuisine will make you and your love create memories of togetherness.

While at Savannah, you should plan to visit River Street, get into some shopping of curios from the antique stores. Stir the art-loving soul by visiting the Telfair Museum of Art and the SCAD Store.

The art college students will be more than happy to entertain both of you with their beautiful and intricate fine arts. You can also buy some souvenirs as a token of remembrance from here.

Best Places for Couples to Travel in the US

Final Thought on Best Places for Couples to Travel in the US

No one requires any state declared holiday to plan for a vacation with your beloved.

What is most required is a holiday spot, conducive to stay together for some time, spend some quiet and cozy moments, and double-up your romance!

From rural wine places to tropical islands and mountains, the US caters to all the romantic getaways, where you never require a passport.

So, why wait?  Sit and plan out for your next romantic trip to enjoy some time off together.

As mentioned above, ten best vacation spots will surely help create the most of your time of togetherness.

13 Camping Safety Tips To Know

There is a series of important camping safety tips to have in mind and plan your adventure. Although camping seems like a fun outdoor activity, it is a serious thing with many details. But don’t worry, If you comply with our list of camping safety tips you can be safe and healthy outdoors.

Also read our camping for beginners guide.

Stay Hydrated

Water is the most important, vital need.

We should not forget to take enough water with us and drink water regularly.

Instead of drinking water when we are thirsty, it is much more important to drink water regularly.

Do Not Pitch Your Tent Near the Water

While determining the area we will camp, we always try to find the right and most beautiful place. Sometimes this search can cause us to make wrong decisions.

We prefer camping at the water’s edge since it has a beautiful view. However, it should not be done for a safe camp.

Wild animals visit these water sources at night to feed. If you set up your tent near these water sources; you may encounter these creatures.

So set up your camp at a distance of at least 600-700 feet away from the water. And lastly, never pitch a tent on the edge of the running water. As a result of a rainy night, the water can reach your tent within minutes.

Choose Your Camping Partner Properly

Camping Safety Tips

Camps with compatible and problem-free people have always been more enjoyable. As the number of camping partners increases, so does the problem.

So choose your camp buddy well for your outdoor activity.

Your friendship may get worsen as a result of the inability to manage the tensions that may arise as a result of the aggravation of physical conditions.

Even if you have complete confidence and are a master camper, you should definitely go with a buddy.

Because there may be a lot of negative things that can happen to you in nature and you may not be able to fight these negativities on your own. That’s why a reassuring friend is always good.

Watch out for Wild Animals

Do not forget that we’re the guests in the forest or land we will go to. Therefore, act as a guest and respect the natural habitats of living things.

Do not leave food, drinks, and fragrant things in your camping area before sleeping. If there are such things, pack them in an airtight manner and hang them (in a bear canister) on a tree 200-300 meters away.

Look for tracks on the ground, stay away from animals’ crossing points.

If you have a curious guest around you, fire a few hands before you go to sleep with your sound gun (if you have it) so that you can drive them away for a while.

And again, when you wake up, if you do this as soon as you get out of your tent, you will not be faced with living creatures.

Be Prepared for Insects

When it comes to camping, remember that small creatures can cause problems as much as large creatures. The bite of a small tick insect might even result in death. Note the following to avoid this situation.

  • Be sure to wear long sleeves and pants during trekking.
  • While walking, make it a habit to center the paths. Ticks are mostly found in leaf residues close to the ground.
  • It is possible to keep the insects away from your skin by putting your pants in socks during periods of ticks.

Get this cost effective insect repellent.

Inform Your Close Friend and Family About Your Trip

Before going for outdoor activities, print out the map of your destination, and work on it.

Give a copy of these prints to your friends and family.

Depending on your financial situation, satellite phones or GPS devices will also be very useful in both navigation and emergency situations.

Watch out for Lightning

Rain in the camp is quite enjoyable. However, perhaps the biggest threat in the camp is lightning. If you feel that there might be lightning soon, be sure to do the following things:

  • Do not stay in the tent, aluminum materials in the tent can attract lightning
  • If your car is close, wait in your car until the storm is over
  • Stay away from the trees
  • If there is a cave nearby, you can take shelter in the cave, caves are the safest places in these situations

Stay Alert to the Storms

As a result of sudden pressure and temperature changes, you may suddenly encounter stormy weather. In such cases, the weather suddenly changes, and rain begins with the storm. In this case:

  • You should stay away from the rivers and go to a safer place such as a cave or a car
  • You should stay away from old trees, they may crack and fall on the tent
  • If you don’t have cars of caves nearby tighten the ropes of the tent to make it more stable and robust
  • Take your food to an area where they will not be affected by the wind and rain

And if you’re into winter camping, choose a proper cold weather sleeping bag.

Do Not Eat Everything You Found in Nature

The right food choice is very important when camping, but there are even more important things such as the source and storage conditions of these foods. Therefore:

  • Avoid eating grass, fruits, and mushrooms you found in nature.
  • Just because a water source looks clean it doesn’t mean it’s drinkable, I recommend using a small water filter for that.
  • Stay away from perishable meals, prefer canned food.

Do Not Leave Your Campfire Unattended

Camping Safety Tips
Take care of your camping fire

Fire is one of the most common threats in nature. So to do your camp more safely, note the followings:

  • Do not build a campfire next to old and low trees. 
  • Make sure the fire area is surrounded by rocks.
  • Never leave your campfire unattended, especially before you go to sleep make sure the fire is put out.

Always Keep These in Your Backpack

Camping Safety Tips
Prepare your backpack in a clever way

Some things can save lives even if they are small. A few pieces of equipment would protect you from many negative situations in the camp.

  • Have a warning whistle with you. In emergencies, you can send a warning sound to your friend.
  • Take a thermal blanket that will protect you against hypothermia in winter camps. It is very cheap and takes up almost no space.
  • Have a spray against bears, a sound gun or torpedo against wolves. It is not clear when and where you will meet.

Read our post for Ultralight backpacking.

Prepare a Small First Aid Kit

Camping Safety Tips
Pack a kit you can use

At some point, nearly everyone needs a first aid kit.

If you are considering a camping trip, getting a travel-appropriate first aid kit is essential to your health.

The best camping first aid kit should come loaded with products to assist with any possible complications, including medicine and emergency equipment that can save lives.

Choose Your Gear Properly

Camping Safety Tips
Have a good pad and sleeping bag

The sleeping pad is one of the vital gear for camping, especially If you have a bad back, or if you’re a side sleeper.

Sleeping on an uneven surface may cause a sore back and it can make your life miserable for months. Therefore choose a proper sleeping pad for bad backs, preferably more than 3” thick.

Frequently Asked Questions for Camping Safety Tips

What to Do When You Encounter a Bear?

First of all, the classic dead imitation will not generally work. It is often a wrong move to run away from the campsite or its surroundings when you encounter a bear. Instead, you can try to look bigger without turning your back and making eye contact with the bear, or you can also shout loudly to show that you are not an easy bite. Pepper spray is one of the effective weapons. It works if it is used correctly and on time.

What to Do When You See a Snake?

In nature, we often encounter snakes in 2 situations.
When we step on it without realizing it: if this is the case, move away quickly.
When we noticed the snake in advance: If this is the case, firstly stop, don’t move and observe the snake, if it is stuck in the corner, slowly back off. If you move slowly, you will not be perceived as a threat and the snake is less likely to strike.

What to Do When You Encounter a Wild Boar?

The thing is, most wild animals attack when they feel threatened. So if you encounter a wild boar, do not make sudden moves, slowly move away from the animal and give it a clear path for an escape.

How To Best Enjoy Amsterdam Summer 2020

Amsterdam is at its absolute best during the summer months (June, July and August offer the best weather but a month either side is normally good as well).

The streets and parks are bustling and the canals are full of locals and visitors alike – It feels like everyone is enjoying the city’s electric atmosphere in the summer sunshine!

Amsterdam is one of the best places to be in Europe in the summer as the whole city comes to life after the long Dutch winter. Read how to spend 2 days in Amsterdam. or, if you have the time to stay 3 days in Amsterdam with a different itinerary.

There are a huge number of things to do in summer, from festivals and events to must-do activities – here are some of our highlights for the Amsterdam summer.

Amsterdam Boat Rental

Amsterdam Summer

During the warmer months, the city’s beautifully historic waterways are the place to be! Lots of people in Amsterdam own boats and it’s difficult not to be envious as you watch them sailing along from a bridge.

The good news, however, is that you too can enjoy sailing in Amsterdam with Starboard’s Amsterdam Boat Rental.

Get a bunch of friends together and get on board their luxury boat to enjoy sailing through the city’s famous canal belt with plenty of ice-cold beers or delicious wines!

As you sit back, taking in the sights of the city with a cold drink in your hand, you’ll feel at the top of the world!

Explore the Canal Belt

Many of the city’s best-loved sights and attractions are based along these waterways and the Amsterdam canal belt forms the historic center of the city.

Summer in Amsterdam

For centuries, the famous canals have brought merchants ships into the city from all four corners of the earth and the wealth accumulated from this trade is clear to see.

The towering, wonky houses still loom over the canals and this iconic and unique architectural mix has inspired artists for hundreds of years.

Whether you’re exploring by boat, foot or even bike, be sure to look up and take in these magnificent buildings!

Day Trips during Amsterdam Summer

Amsterdam Summer

There is much more to this country than just its capital and, despite the fact that the majority of visitors stay in Amsterdam, during the long days of the summer months it’s definitely worth taking the time to explore.

The Netherlands has beautiful countryside, quaint towns, and villages and an incredible coastline.

If you’d like to explore more of the Dutch countryside, check out the famous Amsterdam windmill tour, which takes you on a grand day out to explore the country’s most famous villages and windmill-dotted countryside.

For day trips from Amsterdam to other cities in the country, consider Delft, Leiden, The Hague, or Haarlem!

Enjoy World-Class Festivals and Unique Events!

The Amsterdam summer is packed with some fantastic festivals and events. Here are a handful of highlights of these action-packed months!

Gay Pride

Amsterdam Gay Pride is one of the biggest and best-known Pride celebrations in the world. Unlike most pride parades, the Amsterdam celebration takes place along the city’s canals by boat!

Millions of people come for this event and the city’s waterways are lined with cheering crowds before the city descends into a night of crazy parties that last till dawn!

Aside from King’s Day, Pride is the biggest annual event in the city and regularly welcomes over half a million visitors.

Tolerance and liberalism have long been an important part of Dutch culture and this event has symbolized this for decades.

Summer in Amsterdam

Music Festivals

The Netherlands is well known for its music festivals.

This small country has produced more top DJs than any other and this culture of dance music extends to its fantastic festivals. Some of the best include Awakenings, Milkshake, Loveland, and Dekmantel.

Techno and House Music have been an important part of the Dutch musical landscape since its conception and this is reflected in the city’s festival scene.

If you’re planning on coming to Amsterdam for a festival, why not book an extra couple of days either side so you get to check out everything that the city has to offer besides the festival ground?

Theatre Festivals

There are a few theatre festivals throughout the summer months (mostly outdoor) so there’s plenty for drama lovers to enjoy.

Some of the best known and highly regarded are De Parade Theatre Festival (taking place annually in Martin Luther King Park) and the various events put on by the Vondelpark Open Air Theatre (a variety of performances in the park throughout the summer months).

Food Festivals

There are some great food festivals each year during the Amsterdam summer. The first of these is Rollende Keukens  (Rolling Kitchens in English).

This festival really marks the start of the summer season and turns Westerpark into one big culinary paradise, as a variety of food trucks set up shop for the weekend.

This festival offers much more than just food, however, and you can kick the Amsterdam summer off in style – the parties last late into the night.

Another great food festival is Taste of Amsterdam – taking place in Amstel Park, this event is where a number of restaurants from around the city exhibit their finest haute cuisine at affordable prices.

It’s less down-and-dirty than Rollende Keukens (don’t expect to be dancing the night away with a canape in hand) but nonetheless a great event for food lovers.

Want to try great, local street food but missing the festival dates? Check out the city’s food markets.

Food Markets

Amsterdam’s markets are well known for their great food.

If you like to try fresh local food, look no further than Albert Cuyp Markt, Dappermarkt or Ten Katemarkt and be sure to indulge in some of the local specialties on offer – kibelling (fried pieces of fresh fish), the famous herring (be sure to hold them by the tail and gobble them mouthful by mouthful like the locals!) or freshly prepared sweet treats like poffertjes (mini Dutch pancakes) or stroopwafels! Yum!

Amsterdam Summer

Get some fresh air and enjoy the sunshine in the city’s most beautiful green spaces and urban beaches!

Amsterdamse Bos

The Amsterdamse Bos (Amsterdam Forest) is the city’s biggest green space and you’ll feel a million miles away from the bustle of the city in this wooded oasis.

Summer in Amsterdam

Explore by bike or take a stroll and a picnic! You can also swim in the Amsterdamse Bos’s lakes – the perfect place for a refreshing dip on a hot day.

Urban Beaches

Amsterdam has quite a few urban beaches, which are often overlooked by visitors as they can be quite well hidden.

Some of the best are the zwemstrand at Sloterplas Lake, manmade beach bars such as Roest and Pllek and, local favourite, Blijburg aan Zee.

If it’s a hot day and you want to chill with sand between your toes, stick your swimming trunks on and head to the beach – they’re all easily reached by public transport despite looking a bit out of the way.

Explore the narrow city streets as the sun goes down…

Red Light District

Amsterdam’s naughtiest and most infamous neighborhood really comes to life during the summer months.

If you want to take a look around before grabbing a beer on one of the sun-drenched terraces that line the canals in the oldest part of the city, you’ll be spoiled for choice!

As the sun goes down, the Red Light District is actually surprisingly beautiful with its leaning houses, quaint bridges, and cobbled streets.

This is the oldest part of the city and, although it is known for its window brothels, coffee shops, and general debauchery, there’s something to see for everyone and the area is well worth checking out.

To get a really great view of the medieval heart of the city, climb up the tower of the Oudekerk (built-in 1213!).

Get a feel for the city’s cultural contributions at the best Amsterdam museums.

Amsterdam is a major cultural capital of Europe and the city is home to more museums per square mile than anywhere else on earth! Check out these cultural gems:

Van Gogh museum

The Van Gogh Museum is home to the masterpieces of the Netherlands’ most famous painter.

Situated in Museumplein, this museum overlooks a big green space where hundreds of local people gather to enjoy a picnic or drink so after you’ve taken in some of the world’s best-loved art, you can lie down on the grass and enjoy a budget-friendly lunch!

Street Art and Outdoor Sculpture

If the weather’s beautiful and you don’t want to be indoors, Amsterdam has plenty of street art to enjoy whilst exploring the city.

Some of the best can be found in Amsterdam Noord- just a short ferry trip across the Ij to NDSM from Amsterdam Centraal.

Alternatively, check out the Rijksmuseum’s gardens or the giant carvings in Vondelpark (both free) to enjoy outdoor sculpture art.

Whatever you decide to enjoy out of the many things to do during the Amsterdam summer, be sure to take the time to sit back with a nice cold beer and soak in the atmosphere as well as the sun! Life is just that bit sweeter when you’re lucky enough to be in Amsterdam in the summer – enjoy every minute of it!

Sleep Disorders: Know the Enemy Faces

Are you suffering from sleep disorders? Know that enemy and its allies and see how to tackle insomnia or sleep deprivation problems.

Sleep is a vital part and parcel of human life. Humans are strongly recommended to sleep for no less than eight hours a day.

Sleeping for a sufficient duration of time is a sure way of mitigating many of the physical, emotional, and psychological problems that arise from time to time.

As with any other physiological process, sleep, too, does experience some disorders and other relevant issues.

A sleep disorder is a condition that comes about as a result of the changes in your sleep patterns. We take a look at this subject matter in these discussions.

Types of Sleep Disorders: Know Thy Enemy

Sleep disorders come in various shades and forms.

These variations are mainly determined by the environment where you sleep, the severity of the root-cause, and any underlying health issues. To stay healthy when you travel, read this.

In the proceeding segments of our discussions, we shall examine the various types and how to treat them:

Insomnia

Insomnia is the inability to fall asleep. In this sense, your eyes simply refuse to close and fall in a deep sleep.

Instead, you spend too much of your time daydreaming and recollecting your daily events. Though not really deadly, this condition may bring along devastating consequences if not mitigated properly and in time.

There are a number of strategies you may use to treat this condition. These include:

  • Making your bedroom cool, comfortable and dark
  • Relaxing appropriately way before getting to bed
  • Eliminating all electronics in the bedroom
  • Staying away from caffeine or hot beverages at night
  • To seek professional medical intervention if the symptoms persist.

Exploding Head Syndrome

This condition is characterized by experiencing a loud sound in the head while asleep.

This loud sound may take the stature of a bomb going off or some cymbals being crashed together.

The experiences are no doubt frightening though they are not as dangerous as they seem from face value.

The interventions below may be used to mitigate the condition:

  • Avoid potential triggers like alcohol and drug
  • Develop a regular sleep-wake cycle
  • Tone down on violent movies and video games
  • Take time to relax before retiring to bed
  • Purchase the relevant over-the-counter medications

Sleep Paralysis

In this sense, your body simply becomes numb when asleep. You simply cannot move, fidget, talk, or alter your sleep position.

Many people experience it while sleeping during the day or when facing up. For a large part, it is a symptom of a worse sleeping disorder like narcolepsy.

Below are some of the ways to treat this sleep disorder:

  • Maintain a regular bedtime
  • Exercise on a regular basis and intensely
  • Avoid sleeping on your back
  • Relieve all the stress in your mind before getting to bed
  • Talk to a counselor over a given issue that may be troubling.

Restless Legs Syndrome

A restless leg syndrome is a situation in which you experience an unpleasant sensation in your legs.

This is often accompanied by an irresistible urge to wake up and move around. In most cases, this condition is never really easy to contend with, as the symptoms may often flare-up.

The steps and procedures below may yield the badly-needed cure for the problem:

  • Reduce your intake of drugs and alcohol
  • Take an evening walk right before you go to bed
  • Massage the feet from time to time to streamline the flow of blood
  • Talk it out to your partner or guardian
  • Take appropriate medications if the conditions worsen.

Sleepwalking

Sleepwalking is a disorder in which the affected individual wakes, gets up, and walks around while still asleep.

It is commonly prevalent in children and is potentially dangerous to contend with. You are advised to do whatever you can to be able to mitigate it hence.

These steps and interventions may certainly be of much help to you:

  • Make the bedroom safer by eliminating all electronics
  • Lock the bedroom before getting to bed
  • Take some evening strolls before retiring to bed
  • Sleep in the company of others
  • Attend medical evaluations and appropriate medications

Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy is a situation in which the individual concerned cannot regulate the sleep-wake cycle normally.

This results in the involuntary periods of sleep all day long that last from a couple of seconds to several minutes.

These intermittent sleep periods are potentially dangerous, depending mainly on when and where exactly you happen to fall asleep.

The measures below have been noted to do a great role in slowing down the impacts of the disorder:

  • Take appropriate medications
  • Make some behavioral changes and adjustments
  • Stay away from activities that are dangerous
  • Develop and adhere strictly to a regular sleep-wake cycle
  • Take plenty of juice and natural fruits.

Sexsomnia

This is a condition in which people engage in activities they would not normally engage in while normal or awake.

A huge chunk of these activities has some sexual orientation or connotation. They include sexual fantasies, hallucinations, foreplay, and masturbation.

It falls under the broad category of the parasomnias.

  • Make the sleep environment safer and conducive for sleeping
  • Treat any pre-existing sleep disorders
  • Eliminate drugs and alcohol from your intakes
  • Take the necessary medications
  • Tone down on watching any X-rated films

Night Terrors

Night terrors may be thought of as extreme forms of sleepwalking.

They are also common and highly prevalent in small children. This condition causes intense fears that make the affected child almost inconsolable.

It comes mainly in the form of a dream but stronger in its impacts.

The interventions and procedures below may certainly be of help to anyone suffering from this condition:

  • Avoid waking your child up
  • Reduce any stressors in the environment of the child
  • Prevent the child from staying awake for too long
  • Put in place a soothing bedtime routine
  • Offer some counseling sessions to the child

REM Behavior Disorder

The term ‘REM’ stands for “rapid eye movements.” It is a behavioral disorder in which the affected persons basically acts out his dreams.

In the course of doing this, they may end up hurting themselves irredeemably or inflicting the same hurt to the sleep partners if the actions are too violent.

These measures have been identified as effective in tackling the menace overall:

  • Take the clonazepam medication
  • Administer Melatonin and certain antidepressants
  • Make the bedroom safer for use
  • Sensitize the partner of your condition
  • Talk it out to a counselor for further help

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that is characterized by interruptions in the breathing patterns while asleep.

In this sense, the affected party pauses the breathing process while sleeping. If the condition persists, it may result in a heart attack or deprive the brain of the needed oxygen.

Practice the following steps to be able to reverse the trend:

  • Make the necessary lifestyle changes like your eating habits
  • Cut down your overall weight and intake of fatty foods
  • Sleep in your sides rather than back and belly
  • Bring in the continuous positive airway pressure machine
  • Stroll around in the neighborhood before falling asleep

Parasomnias

Parasomnias is a class of sleep disorders that results in abnormal movements and behaviors while asleep.

These could include such issues as sleepwalking, sleep talking, groaning, nightmares, bedwetting, teeth grinding, or jaw clenching.

If not tackled in time, these issues may at times get overboard.

A number of interventions may help out. Below are some of them, explained briefly:

  • Remove any triggers from your life or regime
  • Talk to a counselor to be of help to you
  • Avoid taking drugs and substances
  • Make the sleeping area safer for you
  • Notify your partner of your inherent problem beforehand

Sleep-related Breathing Disorders

Sleep-related breathing disorders are usually characterized by abnormalities in the breathing patterns while asleep.

They are grouped into sleep-related hypoxemia disorder, sleep-related hypoventilation, central sleep apnea, and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

Their impacts are often too strenuous and potentially damaging to the body.

The steps below may be used to treat and reverse this condition permanently:

  • Eliminate anything that can obstruct the nose or respiratory faculties
  • Install a fan or air conditioner in the room
  • Take an evening stroll right before sleep
  • Exercise and take a cold bath in the evening
  • Administer some relevant medications

Causes of Sleep Disorders: Unfold to the Root

These disorders are caused by several reasons and factors. In this section, we shall take our time to look into them.

We believe that by understanding the root causes of sleep disorders, you will be able to combat them well.

A firm knowledge of the root cause may also equip you with the skills needed to prevent the same issues from arising altogether.

Physical Disturbances

A host of physical disturbances may cause the emergence of this condition. They include fibromyalgia, headaches, and arthritis.

They tend to alter the manner in which the sleep goes. Also, they may affect the ability of the body to cope with the pains on a normal basis.

Medical Issues

Some underlying medical problems have also been noted to impact the normal sleep patterns of the body considerably.

These are issues that impact the respiratory tract like the lungs and the windpipe.

Asthma ranks tops of these medical conditions. Asthmatic persons usually find it difficult to sleep fine.

Psychiatric Disorders

Other than physical disturbances, there are a number of psychiatric disorders that have a role to play in the interference of sleep patterns.

Anxiety disorders and depression are core examples of these. They tend to stray your mind away while you sleep in such a manner as to prevent you from sleeping uninterruptedly.

Environmental Issues

Where exactly you sleep may also have a bearing on the quality of the sleep you may possibly accrue or enjoy. If you are in an area you have never been to before, for instance, you will often find it hard to fall asleep in the first night. The same applies to areas that are too bright or noisy.

Life Stresses

Some life stresses also impact the quality of the sleep you are bound to enjoy or accrue.

Certain misfortunes like job losses, the death of a loved one, or extremely sad news are examples of these. They tend to disrupt the flow of the sleep and other vital bodily functions.

Discomforts

Some discomforts especially those that occur at night have also been noted to give rise to the menace of sleep disorders.

Examples of these could be chronic stress, depressions, excessively deep pains, and night time disruptions are chief among these. Be sure to avoid them at all costs.

Genetics

Genetics is also thought to play a role in the emergence of this issue. Some people have naturally predisposed to this issue of sleep disorder thanks to the backgrounds and the genetic makeup they exhibit. This issue is not really easy to tackle and solve by virtue of this.

Night Shift Work

Those who work in the night also experience this problem to a greater extent or in a further degree. Working at night is likely to interfere with the sleep-wake patterns.

It also inflicts some debt that may have to be repaid at some point in time as it disrupts the biological clock.

Medications

Certain medications are also able to disrupt the sleeping patterns of the body. Core examples of the over-the-counter cold prescription medicine, blood pressure medication, and antidepressants.

They mainly interfere with the sleep cycles as they inhibit the smooth working of the hormones. Care should be taken to administer them in moderation.

Aging

Aging is an eventuality all of us will have to confront at some point. Many sleep disorders have also been observed to be largely prevalent with age.

Those aged 65 years and above are particularly hardest hit with this menace. The debate is ongoing though why this positive correlation exists.

Foods and Beverages

Some foods and beverages also impact the manner in which we sleep on a day to day basis. Alcohol, cigarettes, and coffee are particularly inimical to sound and consistent sleeping patterns.

They should be avoided totally or taken in moderation. This should especially happen moments before getting to bed.

Heart Failure and Lung Problems

The lungs and the hearts are two organs of the body that play a vital role in determining the sleep quality. It hence goes that any harm that inflicts these two body parts has a bearing on the kind of sleep quality that is attainable.

Lung problems and heart failures are two known impediments of these kinds.

Circadian Rhythm Disorders

Circadian rhythms are those that alternate after a duration or cycle of 24 hours. The sleep-wake cycle is a core example of these circadian rhythms.

It is mainly caused when there is a deliberate step to get to bed and wake at cycles or patterns that are irregular and out of the ordinary.

Sitting in front of screens for hours has its toll too. Especially in night time. Winding down and avoiding laptop and/or smartphone screens quite some time before your sleep time is essential.

Sleep Disorders - Sleep Problems

Pregnancy

Pregnancies also have the ability to alter the sleep-wake cycles. Many women in their first trimesters of pregnancies will usually develop some fatigue that eventually weighs them down.

Some also find it somewhat uncomfortable to sleep owing to the sheer sizes of their abdomens.

It is not uncommon for pregnant women to be anxious and overly excited too! Both of these have the impacts of interrupting their sleep patterns.

Symptoms of Sleep Disorders

Having examined the forms and causes of sleep disorders, we now want to look into the symptoms of this condition.

Simply put: How can you know that you have sleep disorders? Well, a variety of signs and symptoms are to explain this. We list and explain them hereunder:

Daytime Sleepiness

If you find yourself wanting to sleep during the day, that could be a sign that you have a sleep disorder problem. This sleepiness may usually arise at a time when you least want it to. For instance, it could be while you are driving or going about your daily chores or businesses.

Difficulty in Falling Asleep

When you get to the bed and you find it pretty hard to fall asleep, this again is a sign that you have a sleep disorder. Ideally you ought to fall asleep as soon as you hit the bed or after a few minutes thereafter.

The same issue is vouched for by being absent-minded or hallucinating.

Interrupted Sleep Patterns

Do you experience irregular or interrupted sleep patterns? Yet again, it could be that you have some sleep disorders.

In most cases, the irregularity is brought about by the fact that you sleep and wake up at varying times rather than a fixed and predictable duration of time.

Daytime Fatigue

Many people who have this problem also tend to be too tired during the day. This issue in most cases persists even if you happen to get sufficient sleep later on.

It is characterized by unexplained exhaustion and a feeling of grogginess most of the time. Sleeping for an extended duration of time may be used to remedy it.

Easy Irritability or Anxiety

A person who does not sleep for the set amounts of time will often always get easily irritated or too anxious for no cause.

This is due to the imbalance of the hormones that deal with moods that are alterable for a large part by the menace of not getting adequate sleep.

Lack of Focus or Concentration

The inability to focus or concentrate on a task for too long is also another pointer to this issue or menace. Poor sleeping habits interfere with the mental and physiological processes of your body and mental health patterns.

Adequate sleep also boosts the functioning of the brain and the degree of attentiveness thereof.

Disrupted Breathing Patterns

Other symptoms include breathing in an unusual pattern or feeling an uncomfortable urge to move while you are trying to fall asleep.

Snoring too loud or suffering some interruptions while in the course of breathing are some two of the common manifestations of this problem.

Unusual or Bothersome Movements

The menace does give rise to unusual or bothersome movements especially when you lie in the bed to start sleeping.

These could be persistent and regular changing of the sleep locations. Also, there is a risk of fidgeting excessively when on the bed without a proper cause or reason to do so.

Depression

If the problem persists for too long, the end result might be depression. In this sense the mind gets overwhelmed with tons of worries or stray thoughts.

These thoughts are deadly and may also weigh you down considerably if not tackled or reversed before the same get out of hand.

PS: Kindly note that the symptoms above can vary significantly depending mainly on the kind of sleeping disorder we are talking about here.

The underlying health problems also have a role to play insofar as the intensities of these sleep patterns are concerned. Simply put: the symptoms above are likely to vary considerably from person to person or from time to time.

Sleep Disorders in Children

Children are particularly hardest hit with this menace.

This is due to their somewhat unique stature. In light of this, they usually suffer some disorders or consequences that are far detached or completely different from the ones that the adults do.

Sleep Disorders - Sleep Problems

Below are some of the disorders that are unique to children alone:

Arousal Disorders

Arousal disorders are among small children.

It is a mixture of light sleep and partial wakefulness. The disorder tends to confuse the child and the guardian alike.

At such times, the child appears to wake and sleep interchangeably. That notwithstanding, the child recalls almost nothing after waking up.

Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome (UARS)

In this sense, the throat tends to relax and reduce the size of the airway in doing so.

It disrupts sleep patterns and impairs daytime activities as well. This menace also interferes with the overall focus and attention of the affected persons too!

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Though not really limited to the small children, this problem has a disproportional impact on the smaller kids at the expense of the grown-up counterparts.

The soft tissues in the throat relax and bock the upper airways enough to forestall the breathing exercise. That deprives the body of the required levels of oxygen needed to survive.

Central Sleep Apnea (CSA)

This also is a range of sleep-related respiratory conditions.

It is characterized by a complete lack of breathing while asleep. In this sense, the body does not give the necessary cue to breathe in and breathe out as need be. It is thought of as an instability of the breathing control system.

Nighttime Sleep Behaviors

Technically called Parasomnias, this is a disorder that entails the emergence of abnormal behaviors during sleep. These include sleepwalking/talking, sleep terrors, confusional arousals, rapid eye movements, sleep paralysis, nightmares, and so on.

They may interfere with the growth and development of the child concerned. This requires some in-depth and timely intervention to mitigate and reverse.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

We now examine some of the questions that are consistently asked with regard to the subject matter of sleep disorders.

This is to give a more balanced view of the issue and also introduce us to all the sides of the argument. How else can we possibly get to have a balanced view of the problem?

Can sleep disorders be cured?

YES, they can be cured. Two interventions stand out. These include sleep therapy and appropriate medication. It is better to speak to your doctor before enrolling in any scheme as the consequences may often be too adverse to endure and bear.

What disease prevents sleep?

Several diseases have been noted to prevent sleep or at least interfere with the same in some shape or form. Fatal familial insomnia (FFI) stands out. It is a rare genetic degenerative brain disorder. The disease induces an inability to sleep soundly or deeply when you lie in the bed.

How do you test for insomnia?

At present, there is no definitive test for insomnia. Nonetheless, shrewd doctors may make use of a range of tools to diagnose and measure the symptoms that come along. Also, the doctor concerned may ask some relevant questions and have you fill out some questionnaires too!

Can you die from not sleeping?

YES! Prolonged sleep deprivation is actually fatal. It diminishes your overall lifespan not to mention slowing down the proper functioning of the various bodily organs. It is important hence that you sleep enough per day. Also of importance is the fact that you should maintain a regular and consistent sleep regime.

Can a lack of sleep kill brain cells?

NOT really! Nonetheless, the brain cells work well when they are well-rested. It is important hence that you take sufficient sleep per day. Remember also that prolonged lack of adequate sleep may impact the growth of the various bodily organs as stated. You do not want to interfere with the brain cells, do you?

Conclusion on Sleep Disorders

Our long and elaborate look into the subject matter of sleep disorders come to an end there.

It is not our hope that you have what it takes to appreciate this subject matter more. As you may note, this issue manifests in various shades and forms.

Taking your time to learn how each may apply to you is hence a good thing to do, as well as improving your sleeping environment to minimise problems with sleep.

You want to find out the exact disorder that may apply to your situation and how best to deal with the same.

Consider passing it on to another person who might be in need of it. Good luck as you combat your sleep issues.

The forms of sleep disorder are plenty, but when it happens, it shows that we need to pay serious attention to some or plenty aspects of our life. Examining how one spends its day and their habits, along with professional help can point to the right way and get rid or minimize of the problems.

Useful References for Sleep Disorders

Best 5 Festivals in Brazil 2020 You Have to Know

Are you looking to book for the festivals in Brazil? When planning a vacation, it’s best to explore another country during its festivities. While you could explore the landscape or the culture, it’s better to visit during a time of celebration.

Brazil is known for having a very diverse and unique method for celebrating festivals. The lively culture is full of locals and travelers from all over the world.

If you haven’t heard of any significant festivities, we can give you a quick idea of the ones available. The festivals include both celebrations for younger children or adults.

No matter what your age, most of these festivals are suitable for families. If you want to see something unusual, visiting Brazil during the holidays is truly a sight to behold.

Top 5 Festivals in Brazil

There are many activities, such as outdoor markets, festivals, dancers, etc.

In this article, we will be listing the top 5 carnivals in Brazil as well as giving you access to try your luck to play here.

Festa Junina

One countrywide celebration is Festa Junina, which spans over an entire month.

It’s a month-long celebration for Saint John the Baptist, which is known as Festa de Sao Joao. The holiday celebrates rural life within Brazil and includes festive clothes, food, and dances. It starts on June 1st and usually ends on June 30th. 

Festa Junina is an annual event that’s held in major cities located around Brazil.

However, you’ll see locals celebrating it around every single neighborhood.

There are usually held at local venues such as public schools, bars, or event spaces. The primary purpose is to give thanks and celebration to the harvest of crops for that year.

Major designs and colors known to this Festival are bright-checkered shirts, red freckles, and beautiful straw hats.

Festivities include adorned buildings with traditional food such as canuca, cake, and pe-de-moleque.

For adults, beverages include aged wines, mulled cachaca, and traditional juices.

As you can see, the influence on clothing, decorations, and food are all tied back to farm life and what you’d normally see on a farm.

Rio Carnival in Brazil

One of the other big festivals in Brazil is the Brazilian Festival called the carnival. It has become a natural treasure.

The Carnival definition is when locals and guests from other countries travel from all over the world to come to watch or participate in the parade.

Millions of people partake in the events and line the streets while wearing traditional festival clothing.

Street performers, bands, and floats all like the streets and light up the night with LED lighting. It’s one of the biggest celebrations that takes place once a year.

The biggest Festival happens in Rio, but you can find many other cities having their celebration.

So, when is Carnival in Brazil? Carnival takes place over five days, starting with the morning of the first day and ending on the night of the fifth day.

The traditional calendar year states that it begins on Friday, which is the Friday before Ash Wednesday. The celebration then continues and ends five days later.

The biggest event is the parade, which takes place at night.

These parades are filled with street performers decked out in vibrant costumes, floats, and dancers. If you’re looking for a family vacation idea, then we highly recommend the lively event of a carnival. 

The only downside is that travelers around the world come to visit during this time, which means reservations fill up fast.

If you plan to travel to celebrate, you may need to book well in advance, although you may be able to find these celebrations in every country that has a large Brazilian population.

Reveillon de Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro has a massive New Years celebration that hosts more than two million people.

Tourists, guests, and families gather from all over the country to celebrate a new year. The celebration lasts for a day. It takes place from the beginning of the day into the night.

Festivities include cultural dances, traditional style food, and also music from several different bands.

Many performances are performed at local hotspots located around the coastline: samba dancing, bands, and other festivities, including Rio carnival costumes.

The celebration lasts from the beginning of the day until the sun rises for the New Year.

The main attraction of the Festival is the New Year’s fireworks that are colorful and vibrant.

If you’re looking for a family-friendly celebration, this is one of the few you should visit. Although making your reservations early can help avoid any booking issues.

Festival of Parintins

If you’re looking for a more traditional style celebration, then we recommend checking out the Festival of Parintins.

Its other names are the Festival do BoiBumba, Bumba Meu Boi, and Amazonas. The Festival spans over four days and takes place in the last week of June.

Festival of Parintins is one of the biggest celebrations of the year, gathering millions of people to come view, share historical folklore stories, and perform them.

The first day of the Festival is started with lively dances between different groups. It is hosted in a giant stadium with over 40,000 guests at once.

The point of the Festival is to connect with folklore and stories within the Brazilian culture and dress up in Brazilian carnival costumes.

These stories are unique to each area in brazil. The original story is about a local legend of a resurrected ox, but also includes other additional folklore that’s indigenous to the culture.

Tourists are sure to love this Festival because it gives a more in-depth look into the Brazilian culture, and the stories are fun for both adults and young children.

Festival de Cachaca

The last on our list is the festival de cachaca or better known as Festival de pinga. It’s more of an adult festival as it’s celebrating liquor made from brazil.

Brazilian liquors are made from pure sugar cane, which gives them a distinctive flavor. If you’re looking for a fun night out, we’d highly recommend this to our older audience.

The Festival includes specialty liquids, which are available in a wide variety.

From sweet drinks to thick liquids, they’ll have an abundance of different drinks surely to impress you. All the manufacturers and vendors compete and enter their drinks to celebrate and give thanks.

The Festival is excellent for tourists because it gives them a chance to try multiple types of drinks without having to move from bar to bar.

You’ll get the taste of liquor from various regions without the need to travel. In addition, the affordable price and complimentary drinks can save you a lot of money.

Conclusion on Top Festivals in Brazil

Brazil is home to many different cultures, and each providence has Brazil carnivals unique to the region.

If you’re looking to travel to Brazil, we highly recommend visiting during one of the festivals.

You’ll be able to be enriched with the unique culture, and depending on where you’re staying, there will be different events going on.

The vibrant colors, lively atmosphere, and delicious food are only a few of the reasons to visit.

If you’re not into festivals, there are plenty of local events that are just as entertaining.

Find ones that are family-friendly or ones that are only for adults.

Either way, we hope that you’ve found a bit of Brazilian culture you’d like to experience for your next trip. If you are a woman traveling solo, then read this too.

5 Best Tips On How to Ride a Dirt Bike Like a Pro

Let’s admit, we all love to watch professional riders steal the show on our screens with their killer skills and super cool dirt bikes. Do you know how to ride a dirt bike? If not, then read along.

Watching them do all the cool stuff, some of us may also get the urge to get on a dirt bike and have the time of our lives.

But is it that easy?

Well, riding a dirt bike is a lot different from riding a regular bike. Plus, the motocross track; everyone knows, it can be one heck of a ride for anyone who’s new to MX.

Fortunately, the process can be made easier and more fun. And in this post, we are going to do that for you.

Here you will come across five best tips on how to ride a dirt bike, along with answers to four of the most popular questions that people have regarding dirt bike riding.

So, buckle up and let’s get started.

5 Best Tips On How to Ride a Dirt Bike Like a Pro

Get Used To The Clutch

If you have zero experience at changing gears using a clutch, the start can be a little rough.

Even though the process isn’t that complicated, while starting off for the first time, it can be hard to comprehend.

So, how is it done?

Well, you start the bike (ignite the engine), pull the clutch lever, press down or pull up the first gear, and as you accelerate slowly, start releasing the clutch inch-by-inch, or even centimeter-by-centimeter.

This will get your bike moving forward, and once you have acquired balance, you can place your feet up.

Also, as you speed up, you’ll need to shift up the gear while holding the clutch, and again accelerate and release the clutch.

The same holds true for all gear shifts, whether up or down.

Know The Difference Between a Regular Bike and a Dirt Bike

When you wonder how to ride a dirt bike, this points surfaces too. Whether it’s a regular bike or a dirt bike, it has two wheels, one engine, and similar mechanics in most cases. So, what’s the difference?

Well, both the rides are designed differently and so, they should be handled differently.

For example, on a regular bike, you may not have to be too cautious while giving the initial acceleration pumps, however, on a dirt bike, you may pop a wheelie if you accelerate too much.

Also, dirt bikes are lighter in weight. This may make it difficult for you to balance them correctly. At the same time, the lightweight will help you perform stunts more efficiently. So, basically, it’s a lot about personal experience and skill level.

Apart from this, it’s important to note that you should always squeeze the bike with your knees for better control. We’ll talk in more detail about this in a later section.

Wear Riding Gear and Be Safe

Riding a two-wheeler is always a risky affair. And you are planning to ride a dirt bike, which is even more challenging to get the hang of.

To keep yourself from getting hurt, make sure that you always wear the right safety gear while riding your bike. Even if it’s at a low speed or for a short distance.

Even the mildest falls can give you several scratches and severe injuries.

So, keep yourself safe from such problems. Buy a motocross helmet, a motocross riding jacket, gloves, and riding boots as well.

Also, get your gear only from a qualified brand like Alpinestars. Cheaping out on the essentials will always make you regret it.

5 Best Tips On How to Ride a Dirt Bike Like a Pro

Don’t Go Mountain Climbing On Day 1

The moment you get your dirt bike, you may feel like going out for a fun riding day, practicing professional stuff like mountain climbing on your dirt bike.

Honestly, it’s good to have aspirations. However, before you step out for a mountain climbing session, you must have acquired enough experience on a flat dirt road with small to medium-sized obstacles.

The best place to start will be a dirty road, track, or a dirt park near you.

Here, you will be able to practice your control as a beginner, eventually becoming a better rider after every session.

Optimally Adjust Your Weight

Dirt bikes are too light to be taken lightly.

These are powerful machines that need to be handled carefully. So, keep the following tips in mind.

  • Don’t sit at the rear end of the seat. Yes, you may love the cafe racer riding position, but on a dirt bike, it can make you pop unintentional wheelies, which may as well be hard to control.
  • Squeeze and control the bike with your knees. If you try doing that with your arms, at the end of the session, you will be left with a severe arm-ache. (yes, we mentioned this above, keep the point about arm-aches in mind).
  • Don’t put your weight on your back or butt. All your weight should be on the footpegs, so you can be in a slightly standing position with a straight back.It’s crucial to be as aware as a tennis player waiting for the ball. (Also, the ideal posture is pretty much the same).
  • Let your elbows be free and high up in the air, away from your body. This will give you better control to make quick turns and maintain traction.

Well, these were some quick tips for you on how to ride a dirt bike. Moving further, let’s take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions regarding dirt bike riding.

Most Popular FAQs On How to Ride a Dirt Bike

Question 1: How Do You Shift a Dirt Bike?

This is the first most important question that any aspiring rider would have.
As mentioned, riding a dirt bike is way different than driving a car or riding a regular bike. The clutch is more powerful, and can deliver an enormous amount of power.
So, start slow. When the engine is switched on, sit on the bike, hold the clutch, shift up to the first gear and accelerate slowly, eventually releasing the clutch.
This will bring your dirt bike to motion. Now, to change gear while riding, hold the clutch again, shift up the gear to speed up (shift down to slow down), and accelerate gently, while slowly releasing the clutch.
One needs to be very patient while starting to ride a dirt bike. Once you get used to the way this technology works, you’ll be able to do more with confidence.

Question 2: Is a 450 Dirt Bike Too Big for a Beginner?

If you are just starting to ride a dirt bike, getting a 450 CC bike may not be the best idea.
The reason is that these bikes are too powerful to be controlled by an inexperienced rider. Also, not being able to control and ride your first dirt bike can put you low on confidence, which can also make you dislike the concept of dirt bike riding.
So, start on a smaller bike. Many adult professional riders who have been in the sport for years still use a 250 CC bike. Clearly, there’s no reason to specifically start with a 450.

Question 3: Is It Hard To Ride a Dirt Bike?

It’s not precisely hard to ride a dirt bike. However, every beginner must start with baby steps.
Shifting gears on a dirt bike and then releasing the clutch, coordinating with the acceleration system, all of these can be some confusing aspects of dirt bike riding.
So, it’s better to start slow and perfect your control before speeding up or climbing up a mountain.

Question 4: Where Can You Ride Dirt Bikes?

Another popular question that people have is, where to ride their dirt bikes?
Well, if you have a piece of private land, you are in luck. That’s one of the very few places where you wouldn’t have to pay a riding fee.
Apart from that you can ride your dirt bike in forest trails, desert trails, mountain roads, dunes, hare scramble and off-road tracks, and in dusted rural areas as well.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t ride a dirt bike on roads. It’s just not the best place for doing so.

Conclusion On How to Ride a Dirt Bike

You may aspire to be a great dirt bike rider, but that aim can’t be fulfilled without keeping the basics in mind.

In this post, we shared the five best tips that you can use to enhance your dirt bike riding skills.

Hopefully, this was helpful.

Best 9 Solo Female Travel Tips From The Experts

Solo female travel has been prevalent lately as more women have started going around the globe on their own.

Yes, solo traveling, especially as a woman, can feel dangerous and risky. But, when you take the right precautions, it’s a fun and empowering experience.

Mustering up enough confidence to decide to venture out alone for the first time is a big challenge in your path.

Once you’ve overcome that, there’s nothing to be afraid about. With these nine tips from experts, you’re going to be okay, wherever you decide to go.

Also read this post for hidden dangers in travel, and this one for how to stay healthy when you travel.

Take Baby Steps When You Plan Solo Travel

Now that you’ve started thinking about solo traveling, it’s time to put the plan to action. If you’re new to it, you might be worried about what you’re setting yourself up for.

To put yourself at ease, it helps to plan things ahead of time.

Start by thinking of a place to go to. For your first solo female trip, choose an accessible location.

What this means is, instead of going to dangerous destinations like Egypt, Iran, or India, choose somewhere that is safer for you.

Take baby steps. Start by going away for the weekend somewhere close to home. When you’re feeling more confident, you can go abroad and stay for longer.

Countries like Switzerland, Netherlands, and Canada are generally considered to be safe for female travelers.

They also have a lot of tourist infrastructure, which makes things easier when you’re venturing out alone for the first time.

There might be exotic destinations you’ve always wanted to visit, but if possible, put that on hold for now.

Solo Female Travel Tips

Watch Your Drinking

During your travel, you’re always trying to push yourself to do things outside of your comfort zone.

But never do something that’s going to compromise your safety – like drinking too much. You don’t have to avoid drinking altogether.

Having a couple of drinks is a great way to unwind and have fun with new people.

But, too much of it makes you vulnerable as it slows down your reaction time and affects your senses.

In a nightclub or a bar, only accept drinks that come directly from the bartender.

That way, you don’t have to worry about your drink being spiked.

Most importantly, don’t try to keep up with others. Know when to stop. Ordering water and lime is nothing to be ashamed of.

Solo Female Travel Tips

Be Cautious With Your Possessions

When you’re packing for your trip, take what you absolutely need.

If you’re a rider and leaving for a motorcycle trip, you’d only require essential motorcycle gears with you.

That way, you’ll have fewer things to worry about. Not having to carry around a lot of luggage will also make moving around smoother.

When you’re heading out, keep your most valued things in the apartment or hotel safe.

The best way to stay safe is to put your passport, money, phone, etc. in a fanny pack, and not in your backpack.

Also, keep some small bills in your pockets, so you don’t have to open your bag frequently, especially in crowded markets.

Make sure you’re also prepared for the worst. Keep a copy of your important documents, a backup credit card, and some cash hidden in your luggage.

Check-in Regularly

When you’re out alone, you might want to take a break from social media altogether.

True, you get to experience the world better when you’re not behind an iPhone screen. But breaking off the contact completely with your people back home is certainly not recommended.

To give your family and close friends the comfort that you’re safe and happy, check-in with them regularly.

You can do this by scheduling a regular call or chat to tell them what you’re up to. Make sure they know enough to trace you, in case you’re in danger easily.

Choose at least one person you trust and leave your bank account number, travel insurance details, hostel address, and general itinerary with them.

Also, you can update your Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with photos of your travel, but make sure you don’t overshare them online.

Solo Female Travel Tips

Research Extensively

One of the first things you can do to keep yourself safe in your travels is to research extensively about the place you’re headed to.

Not only should you try to get a general idea of the spots you’d like to go to and the activities you’d like to take on, but also the risks associated with each. For instance, how secured is a particular place at night?

Also, research the country’s visa requirements and restrictions, currency exchange rate, and transport system.

Find out about unsafe neighborhoods to avoid and the documents you need to carry.

Additionally, check if there are any preventive vaccinations you need to take to keep yourself safe from common health problems that might plague the area.

Try to Blend In

Before you go to a new place, you should know about local people, their customs, and traditions.

Doing so will make you look less like a tourist-target, thus effectively keeping away unwanted attention.

Try to dress, act, and think like a long-time ex-pat or a local. Move around confidently and mix with people.

If you find anybody staring at you, learn to ignore them. If you’re in a conservative country, dressing as you please can seem offensive.

Instead, go for clothes that cover your shoulders and knees to show that you respect their customs.

Even in beaches of countries like Indonesia or Malaysia, do not wear crop tops or short shorts.

Dressing inappropriately will not just single you out as a tourist, but also attract the wrong kind of attention.

Solo Female Travel Tips

Meet Other Solo Travelers

Traveling alone allows you to meet other like-minded travelers and form long-lasting friendships.

All you need to do is, keep an open mind, and you will find yourself pleasantly surprised by the people you meet.

If the thought of approaching strangers in a bar or café makes you anxious, there are lots of other ways to meet people.

Staying in a hostel, using apps like Bumble or Meetup, going on a group tour or a pub crawl, volunteering, and taking up a language class will all help you meet fellow adventurers under a pretext, so you feel less awkward.

As long as you exercise good judgment, you’ll be fine.

Learn the Local Language

To get the most out of your first solo trip, it’s best if you go to places where English is widely spoken or where you speak the language.

If you insist on traveling to a place where it can be hard to find an English speaker (like Chile, Brazil, Argentina, or China), it can turn out to be a challenge.

So, to help break down the barrier, you must learn as much of their language as you can beforehand.

If you have the time, you can take up language classes before you leave. If not, use apps like Babbel or Duolingo to learn at your own pace.

Knowing a second language will not just put you at an advantage in your travels, but also gives you a feeling of enrichment and accomplishment. Locals will also respect you for trying.

Trust Your Instincts

When you’re traveling solo in unfamiliar territory, your survival instincts are on high alert.

It manifests as the little voice in your head that tells you when something doesn’t feel right.

It’s almost as if you’re psychic, being able to sense the vibe of the people around you.

Your gut instinct is the most powerful tool you have with you on your travels, which is why you should always listen to it.

When someone makes you uneasy, or if something feels off, you should walk away from that situation.

Don’t worry about looking rude or impolite when trusting your gut. Put safety first.

Final Thoughts on Solo Female Travel

Traveling solo, as a woman, is not as stigmatized as it once was.

There are multiple communities of women now who travel solo and encourage others to do so.

So, don’t let the lack of friends stop you from exploring the world.

Keep in mind these nine essential tips to get the most out of your travels and experiences.

Best Places To Kayak In Florida 2020

Are you planning a trip to kayak in Florida and want to know where you’ll find the top kayaking spots?

We’ll tell you all about the must-visit places that offer an excellent paddling experience.

Florida forms the long tongue of land in the south-eastern United States that divides the Atlantic Ocean from the Gulf of Mexico.

Apart from the world-famous Everglades, or the “river of grass”, the state is also home to hundreds more rivers and lakes, their fresh waters stained the color of tea by all the tannins they pick up from the surrounding vegetation.

The whole state is heaven for kayakers, whether you want to take on the tides and the ocean currents or prefer a more peaceful meander along slow-flowing rivers, where even paddling upstream takes little effort.

It’s the quietest and least intrusive way to experience the rich profusion of bird, animal, and aquatic wildlife that the state is famous for; not to mention endless varieties of vegetation, from mangrove swamps to sawgrass.

The rivers and beaches are not only plentiful, but they’re also diverse; when you kayak in Florida, no two trips are the same.

It’s no wonder the state attracts paddlers from around the US and all over the world.

You can take your own kayak if you have one, but they are also available to hire at all the popular locations, or you can sign up for a guided kayaking tour.

Here is a list of the best kayaking destinations in Florida, grouped by region.

Kayak in Florida
Kayaking Florida mangroves at Eveglades

Along The Keys

The Florida Keys, a chain of tiny islands stretching into the Gulf of Mexico from the southern tip of Florida and linked to the mainland by the Overseas Highway, is a renowned watersports playground.

In one section, a historic saddleback bridge takes you to Bahia Honda Key. This is the heart of the Bahia Honda State Park, a little gem that anyone who plans to kayak in Florida should definitely explore.

The crystal-clear water is one of the main attractions of this route, as it allows you to see an abundance of marine life from your kayak.

You can stick to the shallows, or if the weather is clear and the sea calm, take a 30-minute paddle out to tiny Little Bahia Honda.

Explore the fascinating tide pools of this coral islet or use it as a base for a snorkeling adventure.

Indian Key Historic State Park is the best kayaking venue in the Keys for history buffs as it was once the county seat of Miami Dade County.

Indian Key can only be reached by water from Islamorada, so it’s perfect for kayaking, and the mangroves and marine life also make snorkeling a treat.

But the ghost town at the heart of the island, which is the last surviving evidence of European settlers and the conflicts that arose between them and the indigenous Seminole inhabitants, is the main attraction.

The Everglades

You simply cannot kayak in Florida without visiting the Everglades, the magnificent wilderness of rivers, lakes, and swamps that dominate the southern part of the state.

The Turner River kayak trail is rated by many experts as the best in the Everglades, taking you through three distinct biomes: cedar swamps, mangroves, and sawgrass.

The start of the Turner River trip, on the Tamiami Trail, is only eight miles east of Everglades City and 75 miles from Miami, so it’s easy to get to.

In places, the vegetation crowds in so much that paddles are not needed; you can pull yourself through mangrove tunnels instead. You can also vary your trip, as the river current is sluggish, so paddling to a beach for a picnic, then back upstream to where you started, is no hardship.

Or if you prefer, you can book a guided paddle all the way to Everglades City in six hours.

Where the Everglades meet the Gulf of Mexico, you’ll find the Ten Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge; the perfect spot to see dolphins, manatees, and all sorts of fish, as well as a bewildering array of birdlife.

A relatively short kayaking trail to Sandfly Island will allow you to explore the natural beauty, but it is easier if you paddle out to it on a falling tide, and then return as the next high tide rises.

The Gulf Coast Panhandle

The panhandle where Florida meets Georgia and Alabama also offers options to kayak in Florida. Walton County boasts a feature not seen in too many other parts of the world; a line of coastal lakes separated from the ocean by sand dunes.

Lake Powell is the largest of 15 named freshwater bodies in the county and offers gentle paddling through its tannic waters as you take in the rich array of plant and animal life.

Those seeking a more challenging watercourse should try kayaking the Blackwater River.

It offers stunning white-sand beaches and the same tea-brown water, but it is swiftly flowing and has sections of different class rapids, offering more excitement to kayakers and tubers alike.

The 31-mile trail from the Alabama border to the Blackwater River State Forest will expose you to some spectacular scenery.

Northern and Central Florida

The Suwannee River, famous in song as the “Swanee”, also flows into the Gulf of Mexico in northern Florida.

It should be on any respectable list of places to kayak in Florida for its folklore value alone, but the Suwannee River Paddling Trail also offers an attractive long paddle for experienced kayakers.

It starts at White Springs and continues for 171 miles until it reaches the Gulf and despite its length, it is one of the most peaceful kayaking trails available in the region.

The gentle pace of the river combines with the deep quiet of the true wilderness, so it’s easy to forget how close you are to the bustling urban attractions that are the more usual face of Florida tourism.

You can generally expect an abundance of wildlife along the riverbanks.

On the Atlantic seaboard, a little further south in central Florida, you will find the Indian River Lagoon.

This is the one Florida kayaking experience you should try at night when bioluminescent algae illuminate the water in an electric-blue light show.

It’s an unforgettable sight, as are the comb jellies; a type of non-stinging jellyfish that also glow with bioluminescence.

Ready to get in your kayak? Have fun, stay safe, and enjoy what Florida has to offer from a different vantage point.

Can you kayak anywhere in Florida?

Yes, provided there are no signs or laws that prohibit watersports. If the water is privately owned you will need to have permission from the owner.

Is it safe to kayak in Florida?

Generally yes. There are, however, alligators in fresh and brackish water and they have caused damage to kayaks and bitten kayakers in the past. It’s advised that you exercise caution around these animals.

What do you need to kayak in Florida?

A boating licence is not required to kayak in Florida. However, in certain situations, Florida statutes require kayakers, canoeists and paddle boarders to have a U.S. Coast Guard-approved Type I, II or III PFD onboard. Children under 6 years old must wear a PFD, and all PFDs must be in good condition.

Where can I kayak in Central Florida?

Rainbow Springs, Silversprings State Park, Hillsborough River State Park, the Withlacoochee River and the Wekiva River are all great places to kayak in central Florida.

8 Car Camping Essentials For Your Next 2020 Trip

Traveling allows you to live multiple lives in a single one. What comes along with the travel plan is the need for versatile car camping essentials.

One of the best things about traveling is the chance to camp amidst the lush green trees. You can always plan a weekend camping trip to get rid of the stress and anxiety.

Not only does it freshen your mind up, but it also clears up your spirit. That way, you end up being as energized and optimistic as ever. What’s even better is that you don’t need any pre-booking of tickets for this.

Just grab the backpack and begin the ride towards the hills. 

Keep reading to know the list of car camping essentials that will ease-out your experience.

Minimize The Tan With Sun Screens & Caps

Car Camping Essentials

While camping, you might find yourself lost amidst the dense forests and snow-capped mountains.

That’s when the sunscreens and caps come to your rescue. Make sure to carry the potential creams with SPF 50 in your travel backpack.

That way, you can easily minimize skin troubles like tans and rashes on a sunny day. Along with this, you might also want to carry a few hats, caps, and sunglasses for additional advantage before heading outdoors.

It aids in providing the right protection from the sun when the creams fail. 

Keep The Blankets As Car Camping Essentials

Car Camping Essentials

If you’re planning to camp by the river-side or in between the mountains, then you must take care of the weather.

Due to the wind movement, mountains tend to get extremely cold during the nighttime. Always keep extra warm blankets and sheets in the car.

Not only will it enhance the car camping experience, but also keep you warm when the temperature drops. Another crucial camping gear is the pop-up tent. These are quite easy to set-up and remain dry throughout.

The blankets, tents, and pillows allow you to sleep without any hindrance.

Illuminate The Campsite With Fire Starters & Lights

As the night approaches, you need certain light sources to illuminate the campsite. Most of the campsite owners don’t provide lighting.

Hence, it’s always a good idea to keep some lights in the car while traveling. From flashlights to lanterns, absolutely any light source is sufficient to bring the much-needed lively atmosphere.

You can also light up a bonfire by the river-side for both illuminations and warmth. Hiking isn’t complete without good music and a bonfire.

So, make sure to carry the fire starters along with you. All you need to do is pack a matchbox, lighter and lint in a box. Not only will it maintain a high temperature, but it also aids in cooking or warming the eatables up. 

Along with the fire equipment, you must acquire the skill to start a campfire in the earliest way possible.

Revamp your fire lighting skills before heading out to camp. Or, maybe take someone along who’s already a master in it.

Stock Up The Food & Cutlery While Car Camping

Car Camping Essentials

Your camping experience depends greatly on the food that you stock up. Before packing the eatables for your trip, you must know what to pack.

Stocking up the berries and pulpy fruits are not at all recommended for camping. Not only do they rot early, but they are also prone to damage during the ride.

Try to pack food like nuts, bread, celery, pre-cooked pasta, eggs, and fresh vegetables. You don’t need to carry the entire camp kitchen or a camp stove at all.

With the firestarters by your side, you can prepare the meals at the campsite. Along with the eatables, carry another container for the drinks. 

After you’re done stocking up the food, it’s about time that you pack the ingredients. To cook the meals, you require certain spices as well as other stuff.

Pack multiple servings of milk, either almond or plain one. Further, add a few instant coffee powders as well for an amazing sunrise experience.

It’s always a good idea to carry huge gallons of water during the trips. While enjoying the campsite, you are highly likely to experience dehydration.

In the end, all you need is a cooler to keep all the foodstuff fresh and ready. Carry the small-sized cooler which can accommodate the essential drinks and foodstuff prone to damage. 

Better Luggage Transportation With Roof Rack 

Car Camping Essentials

All the camping preparations and requirements are of no use if you aren’t able to handle them well during your trip.

With the jeep jk roof rack by your side, you can carry up to 150 lbs of weight over your car without any effort. What’s even better is that the rack comes with a proper installation guide and manual.

The chances are that your SUV contains an inbuilt track system specially designed for roof racks. Start with fixing the landing pad over the track system.

Proceed further with the installation of the hardware, which provides a backbone for the roof rack. Installation of the roof rack ends with the mounting of accessories available in the kit. 

With the right roof rack, you can enhance your camping experience in no time.

Other roof racks like snowboard racks, kayaks as well as canoe ones work well with the specific items.

In case you plan on doing any of the adventure activities, you can fetch the particular racks for better cargo transport.

After the set-up is complete, don’t forget to perform a check of the same. The last thing you want is for the luggage to drop out of the racks while on the go. 

Medical Support With First Aid & Toiletries

Camping is all about exploring the unexplored and enjoying the tranquility in the lap of nature.

In the middle of the forest, people often experience the best sunset and bright stargazing.

Along with this, certain minor injuries and wounds are inevitable. With the first aid kits, you can easily take care of the wounds and cuts.

Make sure to grab the kit from the pharmacy or create one on your own.

Stuff the box up with antiseptics, cotton, and basic medications like antipyretic, NSAIDs, and antiemetics. You might also place some band-aids, gauze, and disinfectants in the kit. 

Another crucial item that you require to keep yourself clean is the toiletry. Don’t rely upon the campsite toilet accessories as they lack hygiene.

Instead, stock up your toiletries like toilet paper, soap, shampoo, and hand wash.

Always carry the biodegradable stuff so that it can be reused. Don’t forget to pack the toothbrush as well as toothpaste.

Also, stock up the paper soaps to keep yourself as well as your hands clean. Wipes are also quite essential to clean up your face as well as for after-toilet hygiene. 

Sleeping Bags & Rain Coats Camping Gear Rescue

Car Camping Essentials

Tents are the backbone behind an enjoyable camping experience. Along with this, the sleeping bags are quite essential for a good night’s sleep.

After making the most of the bonfire as well as music, you require a sound sleep. Not only does it provide warmth, but also an undisturbed sleep during the nighttime.

Make it a point to pack the best waterproof sleeping bag in your travel backpack.

For a comfortable sleep, you need a bag lined with foam and cushy pads. Don’t forget to carry a pillow as just a sleeping bag won’t provide refreshing sleep. 

Before leaving your house, you must keep the changeable weather in mind. Mountains are well-known for their rainy weather, especially during the nights.

You need to be prepared before heading out of the house. Keep a few rain-coats in the travel backpack to keep yourself from getting wet.

Also, do pack lightweight and waterproof clothes for the camping trip. It helps in providing better air conduction throughout the body.

In case the temperature lowers, you can always layer up and wear a warm jacket above. 

Keep The Survival Kit 

Before you embark upon the car camping journey, you must keep your safety as the top-most priority. Always maintain a survival kit with the necessary items.

You can put the radio, compass, maps, shovel and other tools inside it. Not only do they prepare you for the worst situations, but they also help you in times of hazard.

Also, put the flashlights and knives in the box for handling the situation better. An ideal survival kit also contains duct tapes, pins as well as short blankets.

At the time of an emergency, you can always take out the kit and use the items to get out of the circumstances.

Final Verdict

As soon as you plan a camping session, you must get started with the packing game. However, preparing a travel backpack can be a daunting task for some people.

You need to keep certain basic items to experience an enthralling camping weekend.

From stocking up adequate food to better illumination aids, you require certain specific gear.

Don’t forget to pack things like a tent, raincoat as well as a sleeping bag.

You can also keep a few kits like the first aid kit and the survival kit for better management of adverse conditions. Refer to the car camping essentials mentioned above for creating the ideal camping backpack. 

World Exclusive Resorts You’ll Be Dying to Save Up to Stay In

Traveling takes planning which is often half the fun and exclusive resorts are the luxury way to say thank you to yourself. Choosing a dream destination and saving, sometimes for years, helps build the anticipation.

There are many destinations around the world that are worth the extra savings effort because the place itself is so spectacular that you will leave feeling it was worth every penny.

Exclusive Resorts in Europe

Located about halfway between Limerick and Dublin, the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains are home to Ballyfin, a 20 room Irish country house set on a 600-acre estate bursting with woods and gardens.

Each individually decorated room will make you feel like you are staying at the lavish weekend home of a (very rich) friend in 1815 – but with all the modern amenities.

The highlight of this property, besides the glorious grounds, is the restaurant which relies on its own garden for produce along with local meats, honey, eggs, and bread.

To complement your delicious meal, tour the wine cellar with the sommelier who will help you select the perfect bottle. Along with strolling through the hills and spotting wildlife life-like fox and deer, guests can golf at one of the nearby championship courses.

There is also boating, skeet shooting, whiskey tasting, or participating in a unique Regency costume photo shoot.

Some places are worth getting credit repair so that you can start saving for your dream vacation, and the Mitsis Laguna Resort & Spa in Crete is one of them.

Although the wide variety of gardens and sea rooms are lovely and comfortable, and with the seven restaurants, you’re sure to find something you like, the real star of this resort is its incredible island location. 

This part of the coastline of the Anissaras region is mostly all-inclusive hotels like the Mitsis Laguna, so you can stay put and just relax on the stretch of beach minutes from your bungalow.

The small town of Hersonissos is walking distance away if you crave just a tiny bit more excitement – but once you see the water, you probably won’t.

Although the term “resort” tends to bring up images of white sand beaches, the Hotel Tannenhof is in the Austrian village of St. Anton am Arlberg which is considered the gateway to the Arlberg ski area.

Instead of sand, in the winter you will be surrounded by snow and all the winter activities snow brings right outside the Tannenhof’s door. Individually decorated rooms sport wood paneling and cozy spaces.

The sauna has a window to look out at the winter wonderland while sitting in its heated comfort feeling the soreness in your muscles melt away.

The award-winning restaurant boasts a large wine cellar.

Exclusive Resorts in South America

The views from the windows of the hotel at explora Patagonia in Chile are of the Torres del Paine National Park, in other words, breathtaking.

This small hotel was built by the travel company explora as a base for their South American adventures. If you are less into sitting around and more into quests, then this is a destination to consider. explora offers 40 different curated hikes and horseback rides around the park for all fitness levels.

After your escapades, return to the hotel for a spa treatment and a glass of Chilean wine at the healthy cuisine focused restaurant.

Bird watching, fermenting your own Inca-style beverage and picking organic produce for your meal are all hallmarks of the Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba experience located between Cusco and Machu Picchu in Peru.

After you explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas, enjoy a hot stone massage or complimentary pisco sour cocktail before snuggling up with your alpaca blanket in your richly decorated and extravagantly comfortable casita.

Exclusive Resorts in Asia

There are just enough exquisite antique bridal houses and other room types on the property of Bambu Indah in Bali, Indonesia that you will have a difficult time deciding where you want to stay.

You can choose the cottage on the Ayung River with only three walls, a mosquito net with A/C and a butler. Perhaps you would prefer your own personal treehouse or the cottage with the glass floor so you can watch the fish and shrimp swim under your feet.

You really can’t go wrong with this eco-friendly boutique hotel. There is, of course, a spa and farm-to-table organic restaurant and natural swimming holes.

Locally, you can participate in bamboo factory tours, village hikes, and a Balinese blessing ceremony, although if you’re staying at Bambu Indah, you’re already incredibly blessed.

Located in Jodhpur, the second-largest city in India, the Raas Jodhpur seamlessly blends modern amenities with the original guest house called a Haveli.

Elaborate architectural details from the Rajput era are evident throughout the hotel and in some of the rooms in the older portion of the space.

There are three beautiful restaurants on the property that include open-air dining with a view of the magnificent Mehrangarh Fort which is lit up at night.

Because the Raas Jodhpur is centrally located, there are plenty of things to do including temple tours, camel or horseback riding, and shopping.

Sometimes you just need to get away to your own private island.

Huvafen Fushi in North Malé, Maldives can offer that. Whether you choose an ocean or lagoon view bungalow, you get a private pool also.

This seems somewhat redundant, however, because the white sand beaches and clear water are absolutely gorgeous.

All the activities offered are water-focused – snorkeling, diving, yachting, and learning about the reefs from your very own marine biologist.

The resort itself is just a 30-minute boat road from the airport, but after enjoying a massage in the underwater spa or having breakfast on the water’s edge, you will feel like you are a world away. 

Exclusive Resorts in Australia

Situated amongst the trees of the tropical Daintree Rainforest sits the wondrous Silky Oaks Lodge and Healing Waters Spa.

This luxury boutique hotel in North Queensland provides elegant treehouse accommodations for a limited number of guests who might use this property as a base for exploring the rainforest or the Great Barrier Reef, or they might just choose to spend their days at the spa on the shore of the Mossman River.

Guests can discover the natural wonders on the property or go to the nearby town with a complimentary canoe, mountain bike or just hop on the shuttle service to the beach.

If you prefer to stay closer in, there are yoga classes and self-guided walking tours.

However you spend your time, you can end the day in the canopy at Treehouse Restaurant trying kangaroo meat or a still delicious but more familiar meal.

Deep in the center of the continent, close to the southern border of the Northern Territory is Longitude 131.

If the words “luxury” and “tent” can work together in harmony, they do in this special destination that promises dramatic views of Uluru (formerly Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta (formerly the Olgas). 

Within the property is a curated restaurant and luxury spa that both promise to incorporate traditional bush experiences into their “menus.”

The rooms (tents) will not in any way remind you of camping. You will be able to relax in style after tours of nearby natural landmarks, an indigenous artist colony, or whatever personalized itinerary you can dream up.

Exclusive Resorts in Africa

Views do not get much more spectacular than they do at the Mowani Mountain Camp in Namibia on the Atlantic side of western Africa.

The 15 grass-topped circular cottages nestled into the mountainside offer incredible desert vistas and sightings of the local attraction – elephants.

Short side trips will take you to ancient rock carvings and some unique rock formations on the side of Burnt Mountain.

This resort can be both incredibly peaceful and adventure-filled.

If you’re looking for something a little less rustic, La Residence about an hour away from Cape Town, South Africa may be the resort for you.

This privately-owned hotel features 16 elegantly decorated rooms and suites, many with private balconies, in the Franschhoek Valley.

The property is surrounded by vineyards, orchards, and olive groves. Guests can relax in the spa, do a wine-tasting, or explore the herb garden all without leaving the estate. There are more wineries worth noting just outside the local village.

Exclusive Resorts in Antarctica

If none of the aforementioned resorts have tickled your fancy, then the White Desert might be the place for you. Billed as carbon-neutral and hyper-exclusive, this resort only caters to 12 guests at a time.

Whichaway Base Camp features luxurious doomed sleeping pods, five-star cuisine, a cocktail deck and a library (you know, if climbing through ice tunnels gets boring).

Guests arrive via Gulfstream jet and are treated like royalty. Add-on adventures include a trip to the Amundsen-Scott South Pole station, a mere 7-hour flight away or a visit to an Emperor penguin breeding ground.

Saving your money for a once in a lifetime trip is a worthy goal.

You get the triple benefit of anticipating the trip, living the journey, and remembering the awesome experience for the rest of your life.

It’s true that you “can’t take it with you” so make some memories now with your own excellent adventure.

Keep in mind to stay healthy when you travel. Book your travel insurance, ahead of time.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon 2020

Do you wonder which are the best walking tours in Lisbon, Portugal? There are unquestionably two good ways to explore Lisbon: riding the quaint and iconic Lisbon tram number 28 as it rattles through the main steep and charming cobblestone neighborhoods and wandering on foot.

While the iconic tram is what every Lisbon postcard is made of, a walking tour can show visitors an up-close and personal side of the city without rushing past the sights, being confident that no corner goes unnoticed.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

Tram 28 and Lisbon Experience

If somebody were to design the perfect sightseeing path through Lisbon, it would look very similar to the main route of tram 28.

The route connects Martim Moniz with Campo Ourique, passing through the popular districts of Graça, Portas de Sol (Alfama District), Sé (Lisbon Cathedral/ Santo António Church and Castelo de São Jorge), Chiado, and Estrela.

And best of all, you can tour the city by tram for just €3 (roughly $3.28).

The problem is, every tourist has now caught on and wants to experience Lisbon precisely this way.

So, despite the tram coming on average every 10-15 minutes, during high-season, you can expect to wait anywhere between an hour to two-and-a-half hours. When you finally get on board, you will be lucky if you are not confined and able to sit down on one of the very few seats.

Still, trams remain an essential part of Lisbon and add to the city’s character, running from 7 AM to 8 PM.

For a more accurate timetable, please visit the Carris website at:

But for those who don’t mind exploring on foot, this is the best way to see the city.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

Walking Tours in Lisbon

Lisbon offers many walking tours – from free tours to food tours and wine tours to neighborhood tours to expensive private tours with a local.

With so much history and culture here, it’s no surprise that Lisbon seems to have a walking tour for everyone’s needs.

What is commonly referred to as “free tours” are usually tours that operate on a tips-based or a pay-what-you-wish model.

There is no cost to take these tours, and you are not obligated to pay the tour guide anything, though most people do.

After all, an excellent guide will share dozens of local tips about secret hideouts, not so famous monuments and viewpoints, and the best restaurants to eat some authentic food and listen to Fado.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

For the younger and more adventurous, you will also get great tips about Bairro Alto, Intendente, or Cais do Sodré nightlife. 

Free Tours by Foot offers a useful list narrowing down the top five free walking tours in Lisbon.

Although not free, Food and Wine Tours are an exciting way to discover the local gastronomy, history, architecture, and of course, the wine.

There is a lot to be said about Portuguese wines, but better yet, is to try them paired with local cuisine while you’re visiting the country.

Running tours (yah, that’s a thing too!) in Lisbon shows tourists all sides of the Portuguese capital while getting an excellent workout.

Lisbon has one foot in its colonial past, another in contemporary and modern culture, and takes its gastronomy very seriously.

What could be better than exploring this city on a sight running tour?

Private tours with a local connect travelers with a local tour guide.

When booking your section, these tours can be customizable private tours and even full-day excursions (but expect to pay more for these).

No matter what tour you end up choosing, these tours usually tend to be focused on just one neighborhood: Baixa, Bairro Alto and Chiado, Alfama and Mouraria, and Belem.

Perhaps the best way to choose the tour is knowing which neighborhood you’d like to explore a little bit more.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

Walking at Baixa

Baixa is Lisbon’s most central and liveliest neighborhood, known as the heart of the city.

Built after the 1755 earthquake, bustling pedestrianized cobblestone streets are lined with traditional seafood restaurants, bakeries, and the most historic souvenir shops leading to Praça do Comércio, known in English as the Square of Commerce, representing the wealth of Lisbon.

It was at Praça do Comércio that finances and trade, much of it coming from the sea, thrived.

Baixa also offers several different museums:

  • Lisboa Story Centre (providing an audio and visual history of Lisbon)
  • The Money Museum (housed in a former church)
  • The Design and Fashion Museum (MUDE) including the works of well-known icons such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Charles Eames, and Yves Saint Laurent, and
  • The Elevator of Santa Justa, while not a museum, it is in itself a truly unique tourist attraction.

Historically, the elevator was an invaluable part of Lisbon’s public transport network.

Today, the elevator is primarily a tourist attraction with a viewing platform created at the top of the lift offering the most exceptional views of central Lisbon.

But being a popular attraction, I’d catch the view from a rooftop bar and skip the long queues and the return fare of €5.30.

Most tours in this neighborhood will cover city history and its architecture.

This location is also ideal for food and wine tours, electric bike guided tours and running tours. You can find just about all types of tours here.  

walkng tours in lisbon

Bairro Alto and Chiado Lisbon Walking Tours

These are two closely interrelated districts of Lisbon, one being stylish and classy by day while the other is trendy and funky by night.

Chiado is an upscale and popular shopping destination, also known as the theatre district of Lisbon, boasting with a variety of monuments, unique and trendy cafes and restaurants, and independent shops.

The area is quiet without too much to see during the day, but as the sun sets, the streets come alive with numerous bars, restaurants, and late-night-shops.

Tours in Bairro Alto are ideal for learning fun facts about the Portuguese people, their culture and their history, listen to Fado houses bringing a festive spirit to the streets, and drink the night away.

If you’re into high-end theater and opera, do not miss the Chiado tours.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

Alfama and Mouraria

These are the oldest neighborhoods of the city that survived the earthquake and shared similar traits of Arabic influence on architecture, building facades covered in tiles, clothes hanging out to dry, and old abandoned buildings.

Mouraria is known as the birthplace of Fado.

Easy to get lost in these cobblestones streets with twists and turns, a tour here is perfect to see the largest concentration of landmarks and breathtaking terracotta-rooftops, colorful tiled-buildings and sun-bathed views.

Numerous tours cover Fado music, with free performances and tastings.

Best Walking Tours in Lisbon: Exploring the City

Belém

It is a charming district to the west of Lisbon, known as the setting for many of the city’s most iconic tourist attractions and the infamous “Pastéis de Belém” a Portuguese egg tart pastry.

Tours here will most likely include highlighting the area’s top three sights:

  • The Belem Tower (a symbol of the Age of Discovery)
  • The Jeronimos Monastery (a world heritage monument and Vasco da Gama’s final resting place), and
  • The Discoveries Monument (the world’s explorers in stone).

No matter which neighborhood and tour type that you choose, you can’t go wrong, discovering Lisbon’s local gems and hidden corners on foot. 

Walking tours in Lisbon has become a popular part of today’s tourism industry.

Whether you’re on a budget, on a private tour, or with a specially-designed excursion, no doubt walking in Lisbon with a local guide dives deeper into local stories and the history of an unfamiliar neighborhood, taking detours along the way to highlight local favorites.

Sintra is just 1 hour away from Lisbon and you do want to visit that place.

Also, read about the 9 day trips from Lisbon.

Best Compact Binoculars Tips and Features 2020

When you are traveling, having a pair of the best compact binoculars you can afford, can be a great way to get more out of the experience.

No matter if you are a beginner to hiking or an expert in mountaineering, such a lightweight set can help you admire more things, even save your life.

But, with so many options available, and so many technical terms to understand, it can be hard to find the right one for you.

To make this easier, let’s look at some of the things that you need to understand and how you can make sure that you are choosing the right model for you.

Why Should You Get Compact Binoculars?

There are several reasons why you might want to consider purchasing compact binoculars, especially if you are planning on going on a trip.

It will let you see distant objects clearly. There are multiple ways that you can use this device. For example, you might be admiring the view from a lookout, and want to get a clearer view of certain landscapes.

You can also use these binoculars for bird watching, getting a closer look at the animal by distance with a 10x magnification.

This feature can also come in useful while on a hunting trip or a safari holiday. In some cases, you might want to use the binoculars to get a better view of the night sky.

This can make it easier for you to see the stars and identify constellations.

As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why you might want to consider purchasing binoculars.

They can provide you with a unique perspective on the places that you travel to, making sure that you get the most out of the experience.

But how can you make sure that you are getting high-quality binoculars? Let’s look at some of the most important things that you’ll need to look for.

Best Compact Binoculars

Types Of Compact Binoculars

Let’s start by looking at the two most common types of binoculars on the market and how they work. These differences occur because of their two different methods of reflecting the light to magnify the image.

Porro Prism Binoculars

Let’s start by looking at porro prism binoculars.

These work by creating a Z-shaped light pattern. Because of this, the lenses and the eyepieces won’t be in alignment.

Because of this approach, they are easy to manufacture. This can make them one of the less expensive binocular options. 

Roof Prism Binoculars

In this model, the lenses and the eyepieces are in alignment.

This makes the binoculars easier to hold. However, they tend to be more complex to manufacture, making them a little more expensive.

Which Model Is Best?

There are several differences between the models. For example, roof prisms tend to be more waterproof while porro prisms might be more compact.

In most cases, though, the model that you choose will come down to personal preference.

Getting Clear Images with Objective Lenses

When choosing a pair of binoculars, one of the most important aspects to consider is how clear your image will be, aka the optical quality that comes with quality optics, long eye relief, fog proof options, multi coated lens and more.

There are multiple factors that might be able to influence how things will look.

Coated Lenses

In order to get a clear image, you will need to have a coating on the lens. This ensures that the maximum possible light gets through the lens.

In most cases, this will be one of the most important elements that will determine how clear the image will be. There are several different coating systems that you might come across. This can depend on the type of the compact binocular model that you purchase.

For example, if you choose a porro system, you might be looking for something that has a fully multi coated material, which covers all lens surfaces. For roof prism design systems, you might want to consider getting phase coating.

This works by delaying the light that’s entering the device slightly so that it’s in the right phase when it gets to the eyepiece.

This increases the contrast of the image, so you can see the subject in better focus. 

Objective Lens

You might also want to consider the size of the objective lens. Put simply, this is the size of the front lens of the binoculars, also known as the aperture size.

Generally, the bigger the size of the objective lens, the better the image quality will be. However, it will also mean that the binoculars will be bigger and bulkier.

Magnification

You should also consider the type of magnification that the binoculars can offer. This will determine how closely you will be able to view distant objects.

To better understand how this works, let’s look at an example.

Let’s assume that you are 100 meters away from an object, and are using binoculars that have 10 times magnification. To you, the object will only appear to be 10 meters away.

To find out the type of magnification that you are able to get, you’ll have to look at the numbers after the binocular name.

As an example, let’s say that you’re interested in a model that offers 8×20. The first number, 8, describes the magnification. The second number, 20, is the size of the objective lens.

Fields Of View

You might also want to consider the fields of view. This is the width that you will be able to see through the binoculars. This will be measured in degrees.

The right field of view will often vary, depending on what you want to use the binoculars.

For example, if you are planning to use them to admire the scenery or go hunting, you might want to find ones that offer a wide field of view.

Best Compact Binoculars

Focusing The Best Compact Binoculars

Once you’ve found the right pair of binoculars, you’ll have to make sure that you are focusing it properly. This will make it easier for you to get a clear image.

The type of binoculars that you choose can determine how easy it will be for you to do this.

Center Focus

Most binoculars will have a central focus system. This will allow you to use the focus wheel, in the middle of the binoculars, to determine the amount of magnification that will be used.

Center focus simply means that both lenses will be adjusted at the same time. This will make it easier for you to get a clear image.

Range Finders

In some cases, you might also come across binoculars that come with a range finder option. This will give you an approximation of how far away from the object you are.

This can give you a better understanding of the scale of the object.

Light Conditions

You might also want to think about the type of light conditions that you will be using the binoculars in. For example, there might be some binoculars that have been optimized to work in low-light conditions.

These can be great if you intend to use them at twilight. Others might have been designed to work best at night, providing superb night vision.

Unless you have a specific reason why you need low light binoculars, it’s best to stick with the more common forms of binoculars, as they can be used in all situations. 

If you want to buy a pair of low-light binoculars, make sure to look for the relative brightness of the binoculars. This is the amount of light that will get transmitted through the lenses to the eyepiece. Generally, the higher the relative brightness, the better you’ll be able to see in low-light conditions.

Adjustable Eye-Cups

When looking for an excellent pair of binoculars, you should make sure that you get one that offers adjustable eye-cups.

The eye-cup is the part of the binoculars that you look through. In most cases, it will be fully forward, as this is the most comfortable position for most people. However, you might need to adjust it slightly, to better suit your face.

Adjusting The Eye-Cups For Those Who Wear Glasses

If you wear glasses, you will still be able to use binoculars. You just need to make sure that you chose a model that has adjustable eye-cups. In most cases, you might want to turn the eye-cups as inward as possible.

This will ensure that there is plenty of distance between your eyes and the binoculars so that you don’t get rings on your glasses. You might also find this distance referred to as eye-relief.

In most cases, the eye-relief will be listed in the product specifications. If you need to wear glasses to use the device, it’s generally recommended that you aim for around 17 to 22 millimeters of eye-relief.

Choosing A Durable Model

When you are traveling, you want to make sure that your binoculars are highly durable. On the journey, it’s likely that they will get bumped and knocked around.

If you are taking them hiking or to the beach, there is the chance that they could get sand or dirt in them.

To prevent this, you need to make sure that you choose a model that can cope with this type of approach. In this area, there are some important things to look for.

Lens Covers

First, you should make sure that you get a model that has great lens covers. This will make it easier for you to protect the lens from dirt.

This debris can scratch the lens. When this happens, it can greatly reduce image quality. In some cases, you might be able to have the lenses replaced.

In others, you might need to buy a whole new pair of binoculars.

When choosing a lens cover, you should make sure to get something that fits securely over the lens. This will offer the best protection.

You should also make sure to find a lens cover that is made of strong plastic. In most cases, the lens cover will come with the binoculars. But if it doesn’t, it might be wise to consider purchasing one yourself, especially if you planning on going hiking.

Rubber Coating

You should also make sure that you consider the type of material that the binoculars are made from. Though you’ll be able to find several different models on the model, you should try to find ones that have rubber armor.

When you choose rubber coating, the binoculars will be better able to absorb the shock impacts, like dropping them. This is a great way to extend the lifespan of your binoculars.

Strong Carrying Case

When not in use, you should make sure that your binoculars are stored in a carrying case. This will further protect them from getting knocked around.

Ideally, your case should be made of strong material. You might also want to consider the inside of the case. An excellent case will have some form of padding for the binoculars.

In some instances, you might get a case with the binoculars. In others, you might have to purchase one separately. It’s worth investing in a strong case, as these are a great way of protecting your binoculars.

Finding Best Compact Binoculars Easy to Use

It’s also worth considering how easy the binoculars will be easy for you to use. Let’s look at some of the things you might want to consider in this area.

Compact Design

First, you should make sure that you are choosing a compact design. When you’re traveling, you don’t want to have binoculars that are too big and bulky.

You should find a model that can easily fit in your backpack or can rest around your neck. This will allow you to take the binoculars wherever you go, so you never have to miss a moment on your trip.

Lightweight Binoculars

You should also make sure to consider how heavy the binoculars will be. You don’t want to be carrying around a heavy pair of binoculars as you try to explore a new area.

The product specifications should give you a good idea of how much the binoculars will weigh. You can then determine whether or not they will be too heavy to take traveling with you.

Neck Strap

You should also choose a model that comes with a neck strap. This will make it easier to use, giving you a place to rest your binoculars. It will also prevent them from accidentally slipping from your hands and falling to the floor.

 It’s important that you make sure that the neck strap is comfortable. For example, it should be wide, evenly distributing the weight of the binoculars.

You might also want to find something that has some padding, or is made from a soft material, this will help prevent chaffing.

Caring For Your Binoculars

Once you’ve found the right binoculars, you’ll have to make sure that you take care of them. This will ensure that they continue to provide a clear image. It will also help you extend their lifespan. There are a few simple ways that you can take care of your binoculars.

Keep Them Clean

You should make sure that you keep the lenses clean. Dirt can sometimes build up. By cleaning them regularly, you’ll be able to prevent this. However, you should make sure to be careful about the type of things that you clean the lenses with. Sometimes items like paper towels will be too abrasive.

This can risk damage to the lens. To prevent this, you should make sure that you are only using products that have been designed for use with binoculars. In most cases, you will need to purchase this kit separately.

It’s generally recommended that you clean your binoculars at least once every six months. This will keep them in good working condition.

Keep in mind that chromatic aberration happens with extra low dispersion, so have your compact binocular set clean to get the best possible performance.

Avoid Leaving Them In Direct Sunlight

You should also be considering the way that you store them. One of the most important lessons is making sure that you avoid leaving them in direct sunlight.

If exposed for a long time, it can have an impact on the optics.

This can reduce image quality. In some cases, it can even impact on the tough rubber casing.

Try To Avoid Harsh Conditions on Optics

As we described, you should make sure that you find a durable model. Getting something with a rubber casing will ensure that it will be protected from minor shocks. However, this doesn’t mean that you can be reckless with the device.

For example, you still won’t be able to drop it onto the floor. You should also try to avoid putting it into harsh conditions, like dropping it in water or a muddy puddle.

Eventually, this kind of rough handling will have a big impact on the device and you’ll eventually cause permanent damage.

 Conclusion for Choosing Best Compact Binoculars

When you are traveling, you want to fully explore the new area. When you get a pair of binoculars, you’ll be able to get more detail.

This can be perfect when surveying the view from a lookout or observing the stars from the rooftop.

Hopefully, you now have a better idea about some of the most common binocular terms and know what to look for when choosing the best binoculars.

If you want more information on this topic, and to find some of the most popular options on the market, make sure to check out these exceptional compact binoculars reviews.

So, choose the right pair for your travels and gain a new perspective on the city.

Try to get a lifetime warranty if possible.

Best 11 Mindfulness Activities You Can Do Every Day

While everyone talks about how advanced our society is, we probably don’t have to tell you that it’s also crazy and doesn’t know how to live in the moment any longer.

Do you ever feel like no matter how hard you try you can’t focus and overcome with anxiety or impending thoughts of what could happen in the future?

If any of this sounds familiar, then you’ll definitely want to try out these mindfulness activities and see just how much difference even the simplest things can be.

The benefits of mindfulness penetrate through everything you do in your life.

1. Pay Attention

You’re probably looking at and laughing at the suggestion or thinking that you didn’t need some overpaid expert to tell you that paying attention is good.

11 Mindfulness Activities You Can Do Every Day

If that’s your reaction, then it’s perfectly natural and completely right.

The trouble is that in our society, few people really pay attention to what’s going on around them. It’s awfully difficult to slow down and notice things in an increasingly busy world.

Take some time to experience your environment with everyone single one of your senses. Touch, sound, sight, taste, and smell are all good, but you arguably have more than just that.

First, though, start with something easy, like mindful eating. When you eat a favorite food, don’t scarf it down. Take the opportunity to actually enjoy all of the flavors in the process.

When you discuss with someone, pay attention to what they say without placing your thoughts along with their words. 

Really practice mindful listening and to what they want to say.

2. Notice Your Breathing

Once again, you’ve probably heard people tell you to take some deep breaths on countless occasions that you can’t even remember. Just because this step is often repeated, however, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t work.

When you’re dealing with negative thoughts, take a few moments to sit down and enjoy a deep breath or two.

Close your eyes and completely focus on your breath as it moves in and out of your lungs, but make sure to actually breathe from the diaphragm.

Many people these days take clipped breaths that come more from the top of the lungs, which isn’t at all how nature intended us to breathe.

Sitting and doing these breathing exercises for around a full 60 seconds can go a long way toward improving your outlook.

After a while and with practice you will be able to notice your thoughts and feelings.

3. Be Present in the Moment

You might be thinking to yourself that this isn’t really an activity, but that’s not true at all. In fact, it is a very important mindfulness activity. Do your best to consciously and intentionally bring open attention to what you’re doing so that you can feel joy in simple pleasures.

There’s a reason that martial arts experts for years have stressed meditation. It’s not because of any of the things you might think, however.

It’s because a proper, healthy and balanced state of mind is vital to being able to deal with any unforeseen circumstances that might come your way.

If you’ve ever been told that any of these techniques don’t work or are a sign of weakness, then just keep in mind that they’ve been used by champion kick-boxers for centuries.

4. Seated Meditation

Sit comfortably and stretch out with your back nice and straight, even for a ten minutes exercise. Make sure that your feet are flat and your hands are in your lap.

11 Mindfulness Activities You Can Do Every Day

Once you do, you’ll want to practice that same sort of mindful breathing like you were doing before.

Whenever you start to get distracted, return your focus to your breathing again. According to a 2011 review of a number of empirical studies in the field, a majority of researchers actually feel that even something this simple can cultivate a more adaptive mindset that can make you more flexible when dealing with serious issues.

5. Walking Meditation

Find a quiet place that gives you around 20 or 30 feet to walk and then do so, making sure you’re aware of even the most subtle movements of balance. Also, read this post on walking meditation.

As you become more practiced, you’ll be able to pay closer attention to you and the world around you even when you’re in a fairly busy environment.

According to a Harvard University review of the literature published in 2018, the right kind of mindfulness training can actually help to rewire a depressed person’s brain chemistry to better adapt to rapid changes in events.

6. Practice Simple Yoga

An entire industry has sprung up around Yoga, but you don’t need a whole bunch of guidebooks and expensive videos to learn how to do things.

Just practice even the most simple asanas on a daily basis and you’ll start to see results if you pay super close attention to what you’re doing and take time out of your day to do it.

That’s vitally important especially for those who are somewhat unsure whether or not they would otherwise ever find a chance to do something.

Some people are so busy that they can’t even take that much time out.

If that sounds familiar, then you need to make a schedule adjustment. One 2013 review study from a journal of complementary therapies and medicine went so far as to suggest that yoga-based mindfulness practices could have an impact on those dealing with substance abuse problems.

Others tested were attempting to quit smoking, so think of how much of a change it could make in your life.

7. Add Qigong to Your Routine

While Yoga has enjoyed something of a moment, Qigong is still not quite as popular in the common imagination. That being said, it’s a great technique if you can learn how to practice it safely and effectively.

Qigong exercises, which are sometimes spelled Chi Kung, combined mindfulness therapy with physical motion and other paradigms.

This gives you a surprisingly well-rounded routine that can do more than just keep you focused.

As early as 2011, representatives from the American Journal of Health Promotion expressed the opinion that there was a wide variety of health benefits to be gained from this practice and many of them were more major than you’d expect out of mindfulness practice.

Keep in mind that any exercise or sport, when done with your mind on the present moment, is a mindful activity.

8. Focus on a Single Object

If you’re looking for something to do really quickly, then you’ll want to just focus on just one single object for a few moments.

Perhaps it might be better to do so with an individual natural object, but even a good piece of mechanical design can help you stay focused and grounded for quite a bit longer after you’re done with the process.

9. Think About a Band of Light

Another easy one is το just imagine a band or beam of light moving a columnar path through your body and focus on all of the various areas that it would pierce through.

This is something very simple that you could do almost anywhere, so it might be a good option for those who are stuck at a desk all day and wouldn’t be able to do anything else to keep themselves focused.

10. Undivided Attention

While that might work while you’re actually at work, there are other things you can do while you’re at home.

Try doing something simple you’ve never done before at home and then give it your undivided attention for a few moments.

You might be surprised how much you learn about yourself in a short period of time!

11. Use Baoding Balls

Chinese hand exercising balls are relatively inexpensive and readily available, so if you’ve ever wanted to try them this is definitely the time to do so.

They might even help to build up your hand strength.

One study from the Journal of Pain Management in 2016 recommended using a combination approach of multiple types of traditional Chinese exercises and acupuncture, but it’s probably fine to start with just running them through your hands.

FAQs for Mindfulness Activities

Is Mindfulness the Same Thing as Meditation?

Technically they’re not the same thing, but meditation can be an important component of a mindfulness activity. More correctly, mindfulness is the process of purposely bringing attention to experiences occurring right now. Of course, meditation can help you get there.

Is Mindfulness Practice Safe?

When done correctly, there’s absolutely nothing damaging about mindfulness exercises. The problems you might have heard about are caused by people spending hours doing things that they’re not practiced to do.
If you have any sort of underlying condition, then you’re going to want to talk with a doctor or some other sort of licensed therapist. That being said, simple exercises shouldn’t normally cause issues for anyone who is able to do them.

How Do You Prevent Meltdowns During Mindfulness Activities?

You might have heard some people claiming that they had meltdowns during practice, but again these are normally caused by people spending too much time doing a single thing.
If you feel any sort of major discomfort, then you should stop whatever you’re doing immediately and take a moment to relax so you don’t cause any issues.
Remember, the object is to de-stress not make things worse.

Do you practice any other mindfulness activities you want to share with us? Feel free to comment on them.

Scott Fanello writes for Eternaloak to help men and women build the body of their dreams. He lost 25 lbs in 4 months through intermittent fasting. Then he put on 10 pounds of muscle lifting less than 30 minutes a week. 

Best 8 Things To Do In Cork Ireland

Are you planning for things to do in Cork, Ireland? With so much attention focused on the beautiful city of Dublin, some of Ireland’s other urban destinations can sometimes go unnoticed.

At least a few of them are lovely to travel to, though, and Cork certainly belongs on the list.

The most noteworthy city in southern Ireland, it sits on the River Lee, with its harbor that empties into the North Atlantic (or the Celtic Sea). The Cork harbour is considered the second-largest natural port in the world.

While you are there, pay a visit to Spike Island. The island hosts a star-shaped fort. It is a 15 minuted ferry ride to get there. The ferry departs from Kennedy Pier, Cobh.

Things to Do in Cork Ireland

While it isn’t a city packed with tourist attractions, you can see and do all sorts of exciting stuff there.

There are markets and castles and parks and beers. You can visit famous nearby landmarks and locations, as well as the art center hub and art galleries at West Cork Arts Centre.

Don’t skip visiting the Cork City Gaol!

This is a list to start with.

Walk The English Market in Cork Ireland

The 8 Things To Do In Cork, Ireland
The English Market, Cork – Source

This Market in Cork is a famous place and has developed its reputation for over nearly 250 years.

Indeed, having started in 1788, it’s nearly as old as the country of the United States, just as a frame of reference!

It became even more famous a few years ago when Queen Elizabeth II herself stopped by, though it isn’t just a landmark.

It remains an active and charming indoor-outdoor market where you can get local foods, coffee, and more as you stroll about exploring the offerings.

Visit Charles Fort in Cork

The 8 Things To Do In Cork, Ireland
Town of Kinsale in Ireland. Fortress Charles Fort – Source

Kinsale Harbour is perhaps the most famous seaside destination in the Cork area, and it’s here, just outside of town, that you can find the Fort – or what’s left of it.

It’s a reasonably intact ruin and stands at the same site as a previous fort that was used to defend the land during an early-17th century event known as the Siege of Kinsale.

Have A Pint

The 8 Things You Have To Do In Cork, Ireland
Larry Tompkins Sporting Club – Source

Dublin is renowned for its pubs, but Cork certainly isn’t lagging too far behind in this regard.

If you’re interested in grabbing a pint or having a glass of Irish whiskey, there’s a beautiful blend of old, traditional pubs and some more active or versatile drinking holes.

Larry Tompkins Pub, Mutton Lane Inn, and South County Bar and Café are some of the big names.

Enjoy Gougane Barra

The 8 Things To Do In Cork, Ireland
Gougane Barra Lake on a fresh Autumn Morning – Source

Essentially its little area just outside of the city, Gougane Barra, has a reputation as one of the most beautiful places in Ireland.

It’s a sort of valley, almost, consisting of a flat, mirror-like lake, a little peninsula jutting into the center of it (with a tiny chapel on it), and surrounding hills.

You won’t find a more peaceful place to walk around in or around Cork, or perhaps in all of Ireland.

Play Some Cards

The 8 Things You Have To Do In Cork, Ireland

In recent years, Ireland has become something of a leader in online gaming spheres.

Following the 2015 legislation, it is perfectly legal for sites to provide iGaming so long as they have licenses, and many have sprung up. In the cities, however – namely Dublin and Cork – there are also still brick-and-mortar casinos.

Kiss The Blarney Stone

The 8 Things You Have To Do In Cork, Ireland
Blarney Stone, County Cork Ireland – Source

You’ve probably heard of that stone before, either because you know of this attraction or because there are Irish-themed pubs all over the world that use its name.

Regardless, this is a historical landmark-turned-tourist attraction outside of Cork.

The idea is to climb up the narrow but impressive Blarney Castle, dangle (safely) outside an open window, and kiss a large, dark stone.

The point, aside from the fact that it’s a fun, touristy thing to do, is to gain “the luck of the Irish” following your kiss. 

There are guided tours for a Blarney Castle Day Trip from Dublin.

You can also do the Cobh Cork to Blarney Castle Kinsale shore excursion. Get it from here.

Explore Fitzgerald Park

The 8 Things You Have To Do In Cork, Ireland
Mardyke, Cork, Ireland – Source

Fitzgerald Park is the main urban green space in Cork and is, in some respects, a standard city park.

It’s a very pretty one, however, and there’s a certain age that shows through its atmosphere and makes it feel all the more special.

If you have more time, visit Fota Wildlife Park. It is on the island of Fota, close to Carrigtwohill. It is a non-profit charity park and a top in Ireland.

Things To Do In Cork Ireland

While you are in the city, pay a visit to the St Fin Barre 3-spire Gothic-style Cathedral. It is believed that it was built by Saint Baril. The church is dedicated to St Fin Barre (patron of Cork).

Another famous landmark is Shandon Bells & the Tower St Anne’s Church. You can ring the world-famous bells while on the first floor. After that, you can climb to the top (132 steps) and admire the city through a surrounding view.

You can also see how the famous “Four-Faced Liar” clock from inside.

Study The Stars

The 8 Things You Have To Do In Cork, Ireland
Blackrock Castle, a 16th-century castle located around 2km from the heart of Cork Ireland – Source

In a lot of cases, the idea of visiting an observatory while traveling might sound somewhat like doing something you could probably also do at home. However, the Black Rock Castle Observatory in Cork is quite appealing.

The castle was built over 400 years ago on the river called Lee to help guard the area against invaders, and it’s now been converted into an astronomy center and active observatory. It’s a magical place to go and gaze at the night skies.

Check this super post for seven days itinerary in Ireland. There are lots of things to do in Cork Ireland and all over the island of Ireland (it rhymes, doesn’t it?).

Popular Day Trips from Cork, Ireland

Cork is an excellent base for you. Stay in Cork and explore famous nearby landmarks and locations of Ireland. Here is a range of ideas:

Have fun in Cork.

USA ESTA VISA Best Things to Know for Your Application 2020

Just like traveling to any “with visa only” countries, you also need a visa and passport to gain entry into the United States.

However, there’s a more comfortable option for business travelers and tourists who are looking to visit the US for less than 90 days: the USA ESTA visa.

The ESTA, which stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorization, is a permit available to citizens of select countries under the American Visa Waiver Program. This electronic visa reduces the inconvenience of normal visa application processes for people who are looking to travel within a short time. 

The online application process saves travelers frequent visits to embassies, and long waiting periods before visas are processed.

But that’s not all—with third-party online portals, you can get an even more convenient fast-tracked application process.

Just to see the depth and length of the things needed for such a visa, do read the FAQs section of the USA Customs and Border Protection CBP.

Also, make sure to read the USA government page for Waiver Visa and this one on how to enter the US. There is a lot of information to have in mind.

What Are the Options When Applying for an ESTA Approval?

From our experience, you need all the support you can get when applying for a USA ESTA visa. For that reason use the following to apply for ESTA. Why? We are explaining the reasons right in this post.

In our opinion, time is money. Spending way too much time trying to get a visa translates to wasted money, especially when you are a business person.

You see, the application process is easy and direct when done right. ESTA applications typically receive a stamp of approval or rejection within the same day, but they can take up to 72 hours to process.

Applying through the official ESTA website might seem like the cheaper option (you can find that here). However, the chances of making a mistake are high. Missing some important details or misspelling information are some of the significant causes of rejections when applying for the USA ESTA visa.

So, the good thing about going through another -yet also reputable- 3rd party service for your application process is that someone else can complete the application for you and do it right.

USA ESTA VISA Best Things to Know for Your Application

What Are the Benefits of Using 3rd party ESTA service?

By using such a service, you usually have a team that diligently works to eliminate all possible human errors during the application process. They get paid for providing such services and that alone is a strong incentive, right?

You see, even if you are a second-time applicant, rejection is possible if you make errors when submitting your information. So, some of the benefits of applying by using such ESTA services include:

1. Simplified application process

To apply for the ESTA visa, you must fill in an online application form. While some details might be easy to comprehend, some are challenging.

Completing a form that has explanations on each step is far easier than completing one without such. 

If you are traveling with a child, you also need to apply for an ESTA visa USA for them. That also requires all the necessary assistance to ensure you complete this process in the simplest way possible.

2. Multiple payment options

Applicants usually face some inconveniences when trying to make payment through the official ESTA website.

One of the challenges is the limited payment options. The only acceptable methods include Master Card, VISA, American Express, and Discover (JCB, Diners Club).

Using a service that makes payments more convenient by providing additional payment options is best. For example, through such services, you can additionally use PayPal, Debit, Credit card.

3. Urgent applications with no cross-currency charges

When caught up in a situation that requires emergency traveling, you need immediate processing of your travel documents.

This situation is especially common for business people who need to make frequent trips abroad. 

If you need urgent processing of your ESTA, such services can handle your application in the shortest time possible. They usually offer two application options: regular and urgent application.

What is the USA ESTA Visa Regular application status?

Applicants pay an extra fee per person. Such an option is suitable if you are not looking to travel too soon.

However, this does not mean you will have to wait longer for the processing of your ESTA as such services/businesses make sure that you get served within the shortest time possible.

What is the USA ESTA Visa Urgent application status?

Applicants pay an additional fee above the regular fee. This option is preferable for people who are looking to get their ESTA processed within 72 hours.

That is an option usually recommended for travelers who don’t have enough time to wait for their traveling documents to go through processing.

Such applications get under a priority status, which means their application is processed right away. In most cases, you receive results in your email within 70 minutes.

A very important factor is the no additional transaction costs when you submit your payment with your ESTA application.

4. Full refund policy for rejected applications

Keep in mind that even if you follow and do all things right, there’s no 100% guarantee.

With all the help you get you to increase your chances of getting approval, but some circumstances might lead to rejection.

However, in case your application gets denied for any reason, such 3rd party services offer you a full refund.

5. Manual checking by visa specialists

As mentioned earlier, most rejections are due to common errors made when filling the application form.

For instance, you might key in the letter “o” instead of the number “0.” You might also include some typos that can lead to denial of an ESTA. 

To avoid this, you need a team of visa specialists to perform manual checking of the details. These are experts who have done this job for long and can easily detect mistakes in the application form. 

Once you submit your information, such experts should cross-check every detail to ensure there are no mistakes.

6. The importance of 24/7 customer service?

Given the complexities of applying for visas, it’s vital to consult a team of experts whenever you have difficulties.

Considering that most government institutions do not operate during holidays and weekends, you need a service that can help you all year round, preferably to have them available throughout the week, including holidays and weekends.

When you travel for business or even for leisure, that is important, right?

7. Smart application forms

One of the frequent errors during application is putting the wrong details such as passport and ID numbers. Missing one digit can lead to denial of an ESTA. 

What if you could apply through a form that cross-checks the things you type as you type them?

We found out that such USA ESTA visa services have that feature in the application form. In that way, they eliminate most mistakes that are relatively easy to catch.

As said, applying for such a visa is a complex process and you need all the help you can get.

USA ESTA VISA Best Things to Know for Your Application

Conclusion on USA ESTA Visa

Getting your ESTA in good time is a sure way to enhance convenience when traveling to the US. 

Whether you want to transit or visit for business or tourism reasons, make sure you apply for your visa in good time and get all the help you can get.

Always travel in ways that keep you safe. Read the post for the hidden dangers of traveling and this one for how to stay healthy when you travel.

Summer Hiking – 10 Major Tips Comprehensive Guide

Summer is finally here! The summer hiking activity is an entirely different experience.

Summer is lovely but can also come with grave issues when you are active in the great outdoors.

Hot weather hiking in summer is one summer activity you need to get prepared for. For wintertime, read our mountaineering tips for beginners.

Deal with warm weather during your hiking by being adequately prepared.

Your pace and gear will change due to climate conditions.

You need to be 100% prepared.

Summer hiking has some hidden dangers. Knowing how to walk under heat is a skill to be developed to enjoy and not to suffer.

What to Wear When Hiking in Summer?

We will share a range of useful mistakes and tips many do in summer hiking activities, and thus you will be ready to get out there.

Heat is not an obstacle when you are well prepared, and you can enjoy the lovely hiking experience all summer long.

Summer Hiking Clothes

A phrase many times said out loud: It’s hot, lets remove some clothes!

That is a mistake! Many think that to get more refreshing or -at least- not to get hotter, it is better to remove t-shirts and all in reality that is far from the truth.

The more the naked body is under the hot sun, the worst it gets.

That doesn’t mean that we need to wear heavy clothing. A shirt is excellent, or a light-colored t-shirt (light color reflects sunlight) will do the job against sun-rays.

Part of the summer hiking clothes you need to wear are ones with UV protection materials that block UV rays (enough). Usage of sun protection creams/lotions, adds up to that. Choose UPF-rated clothing (ratings include UPF 15, UPF 30, and UPF 50+.)

A more “technical” blouse with long sleeves, helps your body to maintain proper body temperature in a more chill and healthy level.

At the same time, it releases wick moisture (from sweating), while letting your body “breath.”

Ever seen people in countries like Africa wearing long shirts with long sleeves? There is a reason for that.

You can choose to wear short sleeve clothes too, but do apply sun cream on your arms to avoid sunburn.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
With short shirts wear sun cream.

Apply sun cream to all exposed parts of your body. Did you know that many get sunburn on their ears and/or neck as it is one part not covered by hats?

Do apply suncream on your nose too, when you were sunglasses. The reflection from the sun on them, adds up to the power of rays hitting on your nose.

Finally, here is a mantra to repeat: “Wear a hat! Don’t go under the sun without a hat!” (repeat 20 times and wear a hat).

Summer Hiking Pants

The same happens with summer hiking pants. 

Choose summer hiking pants where you can remove part of the legs area with a zipper and turn them into shorts.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Shorts from long pants. Just unzip them.

These come helpful, and you have 2 in 1 when you want to “slip into” something more refreshing.

Such pants are from unique lightweight material that allows your skin to breath.

Summer hiking pants dry fast even after soaking them into water and moisture from sweating “escapes” in the same way.

They are not like regular pants. See the top for men and women.

Get Wet

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Photo from @ingle_jake, Unsplash

That will make you apply sun cream a little bit often, but it is a wonderful way to deal with heat.

Hikers simply dip their hats, scarfs, bandanas, shirts, shorts/pants in water, and just wear them.

On a hot day, these will dry up fast. Keeping your neck fresh is a lifesaver.

Have you ever seen these far-west movies where the cowboy dips their scarf in water and wears it around the neck?

That’s the case. Be that cowboy!

Do the same with pouring water over your head. Just make sure you don’t use icy water on a “heated” head.

The water has an evaporative cooling effect while providing you with the necessary temperature reduction protecting you from heat exhaustion or symptoms of heatstroke.

Not All Routes Are Equal

Many hikers believe that heat is the same on any day in summer hiking.

That is not correct.

Heat, along with humidity levels, change depending on location and existing conditions.

Many routes/paths and trail mixes do not “respond” in the same way during hot days, even months.

Some of these paths are better to hike through during early morning time, while others during the afternoon.

It is best to avoid high temperatures timeframes.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Photo from @austinban, Unsplash

You need to keep a note of the places you want to hike and get information about weather conditions and their difficulty level.

Most national parks have websites with lots of valuable information.

Weather conditions “intelligence” is not limited to your hiking day but for the days before and after that day.

If there was rain, some locations trap humidity, and with a burning sun, they get to the “sauna” level.

The opposite happens with periods where the temperature is lower. Some routes become easier to hike during such.

Body for Summer Hiking: Make, Don’t Break!

You need to adjust your body for heat.

Have you ever noticed that during the first summer days, we feel them far hotter than the next ones?

The same thing happens during the first cold days in winter. Your body needs to adjust.

Your body is not accustomed to the “new” temperature conditions, and you must allow a few hikes to adjust and deal with that change.

A big mistake done by many is believing that their body will react in the first days of summer as if it was in the last days of the previous summer.

Many hikers don’t allow this transition, and they suffer.

Especially weekend hikers tend to rush things up.

How to adjust for summer hiking?

Start with small and easy routes under shade. Another “trick” is to spend 20 to 30 minutes in a sauna.

That will tune up your body for the upcoming summer heat during your hiking.

Take Your Water Seriously

You can’t imagine how many plan poorly their water intake strategy during summer hiking. Many end up without water during the first hour of their hiking time.

Others consume all the water too fast, so to spare the weight of their flask/water bottle.

Most don’t search to see if there is a water supply along their hiking tour, especially when such takes many hours to finish.

The result is inadequate water intake. During summertime, this can lead to fatigue, feeling sick, and are prone to micro-accidents.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Photo from @averieclaire, Unsplash

Many people lose their water by not placing their bottles correctly in their backpack (and thus spill it along the way).

The majority think that they need to stay hydrated correctly only on the hiking day. That is wrong, especially in multi-hour hikes.

Proper hydration started a few days ago, and if you hike for many hours/days under the sun, you need to continue appropriate hydration after completing your hiking trip.

In that way, you can reduce how much water you have to carry (depends on the route and difficulty and weather conditions) as your body is ready to cope with the heat in a better way.

Some energy gels or drinks full of electrolytes (i.e., salt capsules) can be beneficial on a long hike under hot conditions.

Essential tips on Hot Weather Hiking

If you feel your mouth sticky, it means more than you are only thirsty for “some” water…

It is a sign that your body is severely dry, and you need to act urgently.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Learn about water springs prior your summer hiking

Don’t drink large portions of water along your hike (depends on body weight and conditions).

Better to consume some every 15-20 minutes and no more than the amount that leaves your body through sweat.

If you drink lots of water in a fast manner, you may notice that you immediately get sweaty, especially if the water is cool to cold.

That is a defensive mechanism of your body, and you don’t need to do it like that.

A brimmed hat is an excellent solution for hiking with hot weather, as it protects your neck along with your head.

Have a salty snack with you. It may sound weird, but salt can help you if you feel dizzy.

Make sure you have enough water to consume around 1 liter of water every 2 hours.

If possible, do not go alone. It is best to have fun and be safe along with a hiking partner.

Summer Hiking Shoes & Socks

On a hot day, keep your feet dry. You need to wear socks and shoes that permit proper ventilation.

Your socks must not be wet (don’t dip them in water). Wet socks in warm shoes or poor ventilation lead to blisters.

Make sure your socks are made from excellent material (not cotton) and are not too thick.

Make sure your shoes allow air to circulate, and your feet feel comfortable on them, not too tight or loose.

Avoid waterproof boots & shoes during summer hiking.

They block ventilation and keep all the moisture and heat inside the shoe. That will lead to excessive sweat.

Better test your shoes and socks before your hiking during some short hikes or around the house.

Depending on the terrain, a nice pair of trail running shoes can do the job, so you can be comfortable, lightweight, and with a good grip on the ground. Check these shoes.

Choose Time Wisely

In hot and dry conditions with no shade, it is better to hike early in the morning or late afternoon.

Start no later than 11:00 am and plan to get some rest under the shade and -preferably- near water.

As mentioned, proper planning and knowledge of the terrain are crucial for your well being during your summer hiking.

During your break (12-1 pm), eat your main lunch but not a heavy one with lots of fats. That will provide you with the necessary energy to complete your hiking.

Walking under shade (at least for most of the part) is a must for both directions.

Summer Hiking - A Comprehensive Guide
Learn about where it has shade along your route.

Following such simple instructions for your gear and conditions, allows you to enjoy summer hiking with the least possible troubles.

Heat needs not to be an obstacle to stop us from hiking, but just another thing to handle.

Here is a list of new posts for hiking.

Enjoy your summer hiking!

Best Greek Islands for Couples 2020

Are you planning a trip with your significant other, in Greece? Do you want to know which are the best Greek islands for couples? Then, read ahead.

As beautiful as its culturally-rich waters, Greece is also home to the most breathtaking beaches in the world.

If you are the traveling anytime soon, then this is the perfect Greek island guide for you with the most jaw-dropping, breathtaking, heart-skipping beaches, which are famous all over the world for their golden sands (or even red and black sands), gorgeous green landscapes and the crystal clear waters.

Here are 10 of the most beautiful Greek islands that boast of the best beaches, plenty of scenic reasons as to why you should visit them.

From the exquisite Red Beach of Santorini to the untouched Paleokastritsa Beach of Corfu Island – this is one guide worth bookmarking!

To get to the best Greek islands for couples you need to book your ferry tickets way ahead, especially for summer vacations. Use this and this service.

Read on.

10 Best Greek Islands for Couples with Amazing Beaches

Santorini Island: Two of its Most Magnificent Beaches

Apart from its majestic volcanic views, Santorini has some of the most unique and lovely beaches in Greece.

Best Santorini Beaches Increasingly Gaining Popularity - Best Greek Islands for Couples
Red Beach

The Red beach is situated in the Akrotiri area.

Well-known for its unusually colored sandy shores, and the hills behind it, this beach has tall red cliffs that take a direct drop into the clear sea below.

It is a breathtakingly lovely and scenic beach, despite the fact, there is not much greenery around, the red sand and the dark blue sea more than make up for it.

You can reach the red beach by boat, or if you fancy a walk – it’s just a 10-minute walk from Akrotiri.

Do not forget to include this fantastic beach on your itinerary!

The Perissa beach, extending 7 km to the southeast of Santorini, unlike the Red beach, features black sands and beautiful crystalline waters and is situated 15 km of Fira.

You can also go diving, wind-surfing, and jet skiing in its blue-green waters.

The best feature about this beach though, is not the color of the sands, but an enormous rock called the Mesa Vouno, which rises majestically from the bright blue crystalline waters.

This rock has a strange and fascinating specialty – it shines in the dark!

Isn’t that exciting and so worth a visit?!

Mykonos Island: Two Beaches that are Luxurious Sandy Havens

The island of Mykonos has a nickname: “the island of the winds.”

Mykonos Beaches: Ultimate Life Experience - Best Greek Islands for Couples

The primary industry of the island is tourism, and another distinct feature of this island is its bright white buildings.

Apart from its beaches, it is also known for its super happening nightlife and is aptly called the ‘Ibiza of Greece.’

Not known as Paradise beach for nothing, it is stunningly pretty with an extensive sandy beach and with warm and clear waters.

To reach the beach, one can take a boat from Platys Gialos – which is reasonably priced, if the waters are calm, it’s a joy to behold.

The best part is to relax on the beach. You don’t have to spend much moolah.

For a nominal price of 6 Euros each, one can rent chairs and umbrella and work on your tan for a whole day. The waters are pleasantly warm, and the beach is lusciously sunny.

Do not miss this beach at all if you want a real Greek vacation!

The Ornos beach is the most family-friendly beach on the island.

It’s a 10-minute bus ride from the Mykonos town, with calm relaxing waters and fabulous sandy beaches. This beach also has many taverns, cafes, and restaurants where you can eat to your heart’s content, and then soak up some sun on its soothing white beaches.

Crete Island: Twice the Elegance with Two Gorgeous Beaches

This large and alluring island is bursting with fantastic beaches, be it small or large, and one can easily spend a whole day under the sun and unwind and relax here.

Balos beach on the northwestern side of Crete, in the region of Chania, has an alluring, Caribbean-like feel to it. Exotic waters, white sands, and an exquisite island with a Venetian Castle on top, this beach is the definition of elegance.

Things to do in Crete Greece - Best Greek Islands for Couples

Of all Greek islands, this is a must-see island and beach!

The Elafonisi beach on the south coast of Crete with its pristine turquoise waters and its pure white sandbars remains untouched and retains its purity.

Sometimes the white sands also look pinkish, which is said to be because of the corals. Pretty!

To reach this pinkish beach, you can take a bus and enjoy a breathtaking journey through the Gorge of Topolia.

Zakynthos Island: The Sole definition of Artistry

Navagio or Shipwreck beach turns out to be the most famous beach of Zakynthos island, with its exotic emerald waters which are surrounded the rocky beaches and where people can enjoy scenic excursions on boats.

The Shipwreck - Best Greek Islands for Couples
The Shipwreck

It is also one of the most photographed landscapes of Greece owing to its delightfully picturesque scenery.

The most exciting part of this island is the shipwrecked boat, which was washed ashore in 1893 and was said to have been carrying illegal cigarettes.

With sunken ships, imposing cliffs, and coldest of blue waters, it is one of the most beautiful beaches on the Greek islands.

Skiathos Islands: A Thing of Beauty

The Koukounaries beach is the largest beach on the island of Skiathos. Apart from its pearly white sands, it is surrounded by a fragrant pine tree forest.

Skiathos Greece - Best Greek Islands for Couples
Koukounaries beach

Considered to be the most unspoiled natural beach, it is also a protected environment.

Offering a lot of well-organized beach activities like various adventurous water sports, this beach, with its greenery and clear blue waters, is an exhilarating experience.

Sifnos Island: The Two Enticing Fraternal Twins of Beaches

The best-known beach on this island is the Chrissopigi beach.

Located to the south of Faros, the area is named after the monastery of Chrissopigi, which was built on a rock right on top of the sea.

Right next to the Monastery is this divine beach, which is surrounded by a long tuft of trees, and the beach itself has soft sands and clear blue waters, which are ideal for diving.

Though the best-known beach is Chrissopigi, the most popular is the Platis Gialos beach. Stretching a thousand meters long, this beach is usually covered with numerous sunbeds and umbrellas and even has a bar facility.

Sifnos Greece - Best Greek Islands for Couples
Church of Seven Martyrs

A perfect vacation spot for kids and adults alike, the beach offers various exciting water-sports that you can enjoy and have fun with your friends and family.

Milos Island: The Beach that Radiates Divinity

7 Days Milos Island Greece - It Blows Your Mind
Cave of Papafragas beach Milos

Milos is the 5th biggest Greek island of Cyclades and has the shape of a horseshoe. You may have heard about the Aphrodite of Milos. This is the place.

Its (numerous) beaches and the coastline are rather impressive, and its origin comes from volcanic formations.

Milos
Milos

If you love taking photos, make room on your camera. You will get thousands.

There are beaches with white and gold sand, while others are decorated with white, red, yellow, and even black pebbles.

Milos Tsigrado
Milos Tsigrado

You need to visit these villages: Adamantas, Plaka, Triovassaloi & Plakes, Pollonia, Tripiti, Zefyria.

Do not miss the traditional settlements of Areti, Patrikia, Klima, Firopotamos, Mantrakia, Agios Konstantinos, Empourios, Fourkovouni.

Milos
Milos

If you spend many days on the island visit the beaches of Agia Kyriaki, Alogomantra, Gerania, Kipos, Lagada, Mantrakia, Mitakas, Paliorema, Paliochori, Papafragka, Papikinou, Pachaina, Pollonia, Provata, Sarakiniko, Trachilas, Tsigrado, Firiplaka, Firopotamos, Chivadolimni.

The island has 5 Museums, Catacombs, Castles, Ancient Theater, Sulfur mines.

You will not get bored.

The Sarakiniko Beach on Milos Island is one of its most picturesque beaches.

Located along the coastal road east of the Adamas, it has a particular landscape that is not easy to forget.

It has large horizontal rocks that are looking into the sea, and that has, over time, been eroded by the sea itself to form small and big hollows in the rocks.

Though there is no sign of vegetation on the beach, the volcanic rocks are a bright white and add a certain allure to the whole beach. It is an xquisitely scenic!

Milos should be an exceptional choice for your best Greek islands for couples.

Skopelos Island: The Particularly Perfect Beach

The Panormos beach, which is located 12 km northwest of the Skopelos town, is a white sandy beach enclosed by a stunning bay and two islets.

Skopelos Holidays: Mamma Mia & Chora of Skopelops

The lush green surrounding of the island makes for an ideal vacation spot, and the village of Panormos – which is located close by, consists of many taverns and restaurants where you can satiate your appetite with authentic Greek cuisine of the Greek islands.

Rhodes Island: The Singularly Splendid Beach

Rhodes Beaches: The Best in the Greek Island to Seek

The Kallithea beach of all the beaches in all the myriad Greek islands is only at a distance of 8 km from the main town of Rhodes. It is the only beach that is extremely famous for its medicinal hot springs – initially built by the Italians but no longer functional.

The island is surrounded by lush palm and pine trees and has beautifully renovated buildings which are influenced by the Arabic architecture.

The waters are emerald in color and are useful in increasing the spiritual quotient of the island as a whole.

Corfu Island: The Beach that Instills Marvel

Things To Do in Corfu Holidays Greece - Complete Guide
Islet of Pontikonhsi

The Paleokastritsa beach is situated 25 km northwest of the Corfu town – which is arguably the most picturesque place of the island.

The beach has a nice variety of taverns overlooking the brilliant blue waters, and the stunningly pebbled beach itself is a wonder to behold.

The amazingly pretty beach is surrounded by majestic olive tree forests and is known for its cold waters and a delightful environment.

Considered to be one of the best beaches on the Greek islands, it offers some excellent sea views.

So, if you love the sun, gorgeous sands of different hues and pristine blue waters – this is the must-visit most beautiful beaches, and Greek islands guide for you.

Enjoy these exquisite Greek islands with your friends and family, go scuba-diving and jet skiing in the bluest of Greek waters, and let the beauty and calm of Greece renew and rejuvenate your senses.

Got tired of crowded Greek islands, overcrowded beaches, and noisy destinations?

If the answer is yes, then it is time to get familiar with a handful of alternative Greek islands where your mind and soul will welcome for their peace and tranquility, along with great food and spectacular beaches.

5 Alternative Best Greek Islands for Couples

The island of Gavdos for Couples

The island is very close to Crete and belongs to the Prefecture of Chania. It is a tiny island. Imagine those natural habitats are around 100 while in the summertime with tourists the population goes up to more than 3000.

Most of them are campers!

Island of Gavdos
The Island of Gavdos. Photo by Kostas Limitsios.

Have you ever heard of the legend of Calypso in Odyssey? This is the island where -allegedly- Calypso lived.

Island of Gavdos
The Island of Gavdos. Photo by Weidegruen.

Tourism services on the island are a bit elementary, but you can spend a few days there if you like simple living and then move to Chania, Crete.

Ikaria is for Couples

Ikaria is an island where time moves slowly. You can read a lot about it in our article for Ikaria, right here. The island is very peaceful but with magnificent scenery and a few lovely beaches.

Ikaria
Ikaria-Seychelles beach

This Greek island is worldwide known for the longevity of its residents.

Ikaria
Ikaria-Arethousa village

A significant number of studies have been conducted! Read them here.

Couples Vacations to Skyros, Greece

The island of Skyros belongs to the North Sporades complex and is east of Evoia.

You can spend some days on Evoia (actually an island attached to mainland) and then take a ferry and spend some more days on Skyros.

Skyros
Skyros. Photo by Kostas Limitsios.

Skyros is a combination of a variety of views: secluded beaches, pine hills, rocky mountain plains, little gulfs, sea caves, and much more.

It is widely known for its wood-carved furniture and the famous horses of Skyros. This horse breed is not met anywhere else in the world.

Horses of Skyros
Horses of Skyros. Photo by Archway Andres.

Reach the square of Eternal Poetry and admire an unparalleled view of the Aegean sea.

Visit the beaches of Petritsa, Kalamitsa, Agios Petros, Kira Panagia, Agios Fokas, Aspous, Pefkos, Acherounes, Kareflou, Molos, Magazia, Girismata, Petritsa & Molos.

Skyros
Skyros. Photo by Hiking Association.

If you like windsurfing, go to Kalamitsa. There are a couple of Museums to visit and the Archaeological area of Palamari for the lovers of culture and archaeology.

The island is totally picturesque and very relaxing.

In the summertime, several running races are conducted, which nowadays is a rising phenomenon in many small Greek islands.

The island of Symi

The Greek island of Symi is located at the Northside of Rhodes. The first impression a visitor gets is one of the colors and magnificent architecture. It is enchanting.

On this island, you can even stay at the Monastery of Panormitis (if you book early).

At Yialos, don’t forget to visit: The Cathedral of Timios Prodromos, the Customs Office, the Fish Market, the stone bridge, and the old shipyard at Charani district.

Island of Symi.
The Island of Symi. Photo by Charley1965.

Are you feeling like hiking? Take the 500 steps that lead to Ano Simi. A series of great little coffee shops will wait for you there and sit and admire a magnificent sunset.

At Chorio, you will have the opportunity to visit the Folklore Museum.

Then take the stone-paved road up to the castle to have an even better view of the Aegean. If you like, visit the Nautical museum as well.

Island of Symi.
The Island of Symi. Photo by Charley1965.

Visit the beaches of Symi with a small boat. Go to: Ai Giorgis, Agia Marina, Nanou, Fokospilia.

While you are heading there, turn your head and look at the neoclassical houses of Yialos once more! Aren’t they great?

The island of Pano (upper) Koufonisi

It belongs to the Koufonisia complex along with Kato (lower) Koufonisi and Keros. The island is located at the southeast of Naxos and belongs to what is called as Small Cyclades.

The island occupies no more than 3.5 square kilometers of space.

Now, you go to Koufonisi for the peace and the exotic beaches, and that is all.

Koufonissia
Beach of Pori. Koufonissia. Photo by Yanni Haviaras.

If you spend a few days, then you will visit all the emerald beaches anyway. These are Yialos, Finikas, Fanos, Pool, Platia Punta, and Pori.

Pori is like a paradise on earth. A beach covered with fine golden sand.

While you stay there and make some new friends sure that you will meet them every day as all roads lead to Hora.

Keros is close to Pano Koufonisi, but you cannot stay there as it is characterized as an essential archaeological place. If you’ve ever seen those 2 Cycladic figurines of Arpisti (harp player) and Avliti (flute player), then this is their origin.

Now that you have read for these six gems of Greece make a schedule to visit them all with an island-hopping mentality or come to Greece again and again.

Yet, be warned! The beauty you will find is hypnotic, and the peace you will feel will change you forever!