Monthly Archives for August 2020

The Stunning Places in Cuba That You Should Definitely Visit

Best Destinations, Getting Lost - Amanda - August 24, 2020

places to visit in Cuba

Cuba is a country that is all about magic, magnificence, fun, and unexpected charisma. The largest Caribbean island is dripping with exhilarating glory, fascinating history, captivating mystique, and culture. Be it the vintage cars that you can spot cruising through the city streets or the historically significant beautiful buildings of the past – everything in Cuba will remind you of the colonial days and it will seem the country has come to a standstill. However, the country isn’t all about its glorious past, you will be amazed to find the abundance of soul-soothing natural beauty here. You will be stunned by the breathtaking beaches that line the country. Pay attention to the shimmering coral reefs that lie still in the azure hued waters. From adventure sports to brimming natural allure – this country has it all. Now, is the time to learn all about the places to visit in Cuba. Continue Reading

Continue Reading

5 Great Alternatives to a Cruise Vacation

Travel Tips - Amanda - August 19, 2020

You want a luxury vacation but the last thing you want to do is board a floating petri dish with 3000 strangers. But how else do you attain several delicious dining options within walking distance of your room? What other alternatives make it possible to visit multiple destinations after booking just one trip? Fortunately, depending on what aspects of a cruise you find most appealing, you have several stellar options.

5 Great Alternatives to a Cruise Vacation

Sail a Smaller Boat

Is the ocean calling you? Answer the call on a smaller vessel. Go whale-watching and island hopping on the Adventuress luxury catamaran. You will be much closer to the marine life and never have to wait in line to go ashore for excursions. Charter a multi-day private cruise exclusively for your group of up to six people. The rooms and common spaces are beautifully appointed so you can enjoy the luxury of an extravagant cruise liner but savor a more intimate, personal experience.

Visit an All-inclusive Resort

Perhaps you crave the pampering of a cruise: a salon down the hall, massage therapists at the ready, multiple dining options each day and a selection of pools and hot tubs. Get all that and more at an all-inclusive resort. You can choose a family-oriented facility or one that caters exclusively to adults. You never have to leave the property to have a good time, as most resorts offer a wide variety of activities, eateries and shops. If you do want to explore the surrounding area, expeditions are available.

Ride a Train

Part of what makes a cruise great is that you can visit so many different locations in one trip. You can do that without getting seasick or confining yourself into a windowless interior room. Ride the rails with a pre-packaged tour. If you prefer, design a route to suit your interests and spend as many days as you want at each destination. Book a sleeper car and wake up each morning in an exciting new locale. Or travel during the day, and never miss a moment of the picturesque scenery passing just outside your window.

Explore on a Tour

Part of a cruise’s appeal is that the cruise line takes care of so many things for you; all you have to do is choose which cruise to take and select an excursion or two while in port. Other types of guided tours offer similar convenience, in similarly exciting places. Complete a walking pilgrimage such as the Camino de Santiago, or cycle from one winery to the next in the Napa-Sonoma region of California. Traditional motor coach tours can take you just about anywhere in air conditioned comfort, along with entertaining and educational commentary from local guides.

Sightsee in a Walkable City

Find a luxurious hotel suite in the middle of a fascinating city and use it as your hub for exploring. Find a metropolis like Manhattan or San Francisco, where attractions are within walking distance or reachable by public transit. There are dozens to choose from in the U.S., eliminating the need for a passport or a 12-hour flight. Beach paradise, cultural and historical mecca or foodie utopia — there is a city for every interest, and some that satisfy all three.

Continue Reading

Haida Gwaii: The Ultimate Fishing Destination

Travel Tips - Amanda - August 17, 2020

fishing destination

People who are in search of a fishing destination should visit Haida Gwaii. Fishing is a universal sport in Haida Gwaii. The place, which was formerly known as Queen Charlotte Island, is excellent for fishing all year round. Haida Gwaii is an archipelago located in Northern British Columbia, Canada. The migratory path of fishes such as chum, coho, Pacific salmon crosses this landmass first while traveling from Arctic feeding grounds to Pacific Northwest. Haida Gwaii offers both saltwater and freshwater fishing to their tourist.

The Haida people are one of the oldest traceable people who are living there for around 11000 to 13000 years. Salmon fishing is seasonal, but one can visit the place to catch other fishes all year. Some of the fishes that one can catch are rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, or Dolly Varden inland. One can also go to the ocean to catch halibut, lingcod, and red snapper. Many anglers often fill their small boats with water to catch a halibut. These fishes are enormous, so be very careful while fishing.

Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve

The Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve is a known place among Canadian people. The Haida National government and the Canadian government maintain this park. This is the only place in Canada that is protected from seafloor to mountaintop, holistically. The site has over 20 species of whales and dolphins, 750000 seabirds and various endemic land mammals such as North America’s largest black bear. Haida Gwaii also has a very rich history.

Tourists who want to visit the place should know that it has no roads and trails. The only way to go around the park is by sea, which makes it attract very few travelers. Although there are sailboats available, people who want to experience the wilderness should opt for kayaking and camping.

How to reach Haida Gwaii?

To visit this fishing destination, one has to take a flight from Vancouver’s South Terminal Airport to the Masset’s on Haida Gwaii. Then one has to take a 15-minute helicopter ride to the lodge. This helicopter ride will make you witness a stunning view.

Weather and Rainfall

Compared to other countries, Haida Gwaii has a moderately cold temperate all year with 7-degree Celsius. The place is known to witness a lot of rainfall annually. The rainfall is around 1578mm. Make sure you carry proper clothes and gear to protect yourself from the rain and cold. Canada is known to have powerful winds that can make Haida’s wakes reach a height of 35 meters.

Where to stay and what to do?

There are various hotels, cabins, and lodges available in Haida Gwaii. But people who want to stay in a fishing resort should opt for Queen Charlotte Lodge in the Naden harbor. This place is fantastic to stay with fishing buddies or family. They provide excellent facilities and accommodation to their customers.

Apart from fishing in the Pacific, Haida Gwaii also has other things to offer. There are many hiking trails, kayaking, camping, and many tours are conducted to learn about Haida’s history and culture.

Should I carry my equipment?

Traveling thousands of miles to go fishing can be a tough job if you have to carry your equipment. Queen Charlotte Lodge has a vast fleet of boats available for the tourists to hire. They also provide various fishing reels and rods. There are two types of packages available, guided and self-guided.

Highly trained staff make sure that all the anglers are working correctly for people who choose self-guide. There is a “fishing master” that keeps track of people who go fishing on their own with Zodiac’s help. Although you are supposed to have more adventure when you choose a self-guided tour, they are less likely to catch fishes.

On the other hand, people who opt for guided tours go straight to the Pacific with some of the most experienced salmon fishermen. Every season these fishermen spend about 1000 hours on the water that makes them skillful. You are more likely to catch fishes when you take a guided tour.

Which places should I visit?

Many people are not aware of Cape Freeman. This place is very remote, and hardly people visit the beach. Although fishermen suggest that one should only stay for an hour or else, they could get stuck because of the weather and tide. Just over the horizon lays Japan that seems closer than Canada.

SGang Gwaay is a UNESCO work heritage site that is protected by Haida watchman. If you are lucky, then you can taste the delicious halibut prepared by the locals.

When is the best time to visit?

In May, June, and July, the place has 18 to 20 hours sunlight, and between July and mid-August, the temperature stays between 60 to 70 degrees.

Can I get wildlife spotting?

People can witness as many as 20 species of whale and dolphins in this area. Sea lions and otters are prevalent, and one can observe them playing in the water. The famous Haida’s black bear can also be seen in this place.

Haida Gwaii is a bird watcher’s paradise. There are over 750000 birds here that one can see. But most rare of them all, Haida Gwaii northern goshawk lives here. But according to a survey, only 20 adult birds are alive. Visit this place if you are wildlife enthusiasts and want to take some of the best photographs.

Haida Gwaii only allows 12 people at a time to step onshore. The locals are very protective of their land, and they respect the rich historical background. Tourists who are very much interested in fishing should go there and book a guided tour. This is the best fishing destination for all fishing enthusiasts. Make sure to book and plan your trip six months to a year prior. Also, try to do as much study about the place before visiting. This will help you find the best place to say when to visit and cover other essential factors.

Continue Reading

7 Tourist Attractions In Vancouver

Best Destinations - Amanda - August 10, 2020

Things to Do in Vancouver

Vancouver is one of the busiest cities in west coast seaport in British Columbia, Canada. The place is known as the largest ethnically diverse city in Canada. There are many things to do in Vancouver that is outdoors.  Due to the temperature and rainfall, the city is covered with lush forests, vast valleys, and a gorgeous mountain range. Within 15 minutes drive from downtown, one can visit three world-class mountains. There are plenty of campsites and parks, various hiking trails, countless lakes and rivers, and one of the longest seawalls. Vancouver offers people of every age group to find an activity they would enjoy. Many tourists claim Vancouver as an outdoor enthusiast’s playground.

7 Best Tourist Attractions In Vancouver

There are a more significant number of things to do in Vancouver. The article discussed in detail all the things tourists can do while they are visiting this beautiful city.

1. Stanley Park

Stanley Park attracts a significant number of tourists throughout the year. The park spreads over 1000 acres of land and is one of the top attractions of the city. There is a 20-mile long seawall that covers Vancouver’s waterfront. The park also has a heated outside pool and an outdoor waterpark. You will also find the Vancouver Aquarium inside Stanley Park. All the art and history fanatics can visit Brockton Point that has the First Nation totem pole display. One can also take a walk or rent a bike to cover the park. One can also book a guided tour with information narration.

2. Vancouver Lookout

According to some tourists, the Vancouver Lookout is one of the best tourist attractions in Vancouver one should visit. The place has a panoramic observation deck with a 360-degree view of the city. You can see the North Shore and Olympic Peninsula Mountains as well as the beautiful Stanley Park. The Vancouver Lookout located at the 55th floor of the Harbor Center building in downtown Vancouver. Make sure to visit this place when the weather is clear to get a clear view of the city. The elevation of this site is 550 feet.

3. Museum of Anthropology at UBC

The Museum of Anthropology is situated inside the University of British Columbia. It houses some of the best art and artifacts from the Northwest Coast First Nations. The Museum is open every day from 10 am to 5 pm, and on Thursdays, it stays open till 9 pm. Some part of the museum has a collection of 15th century European pottery, local art, and priceless jewelry. In the Great Hall, there are totem poles, decorated canoes, Native American relics, and ritual masks. The admission fee is CA$18 for adults and CA$10 every Thursday from 5 to 9 pm. Children under the age of 6 get free admission.

4. Capilano Suspension Bridge

The Capilano Suspension Bridge is the oldest tourist attraction of Vancouver, built-in 1889. The bridge is 450 feet long and 230 feet high. One can get a fantastic view of the Capilano River from this bridge. The bridge is open daily, but the visiting hours might vary. Entry fee for adults costs around CA$42.95 whereas for children somewhere between CA$14.95 to CA$26.95. Overcome your vertigo and visit this beautiful suspension bridge to enjoy the breathtaking view. There is a lot of other activities available on the other side of the bridge.

5. VanDusen Botanical Garden

The VanDusen Botanical Garden often termed as a hidden gem by the tourists. It spreads over 55 acres of land at the heart of Vancouver. There are various sections inside the park, such as the hedge maze and stone garden. But the essential part of the park is Laburnum Walk. This is the most photographed placed inside the botanical garden. The peak bloom of Laburnum plants occurs from mid-May. The VanDusen Botanical Garden also offers two eateries onsite for the tourists. Make sure you visit this place during the peak blooming season to get the ultimate view.

6. Kitsilano beach

The Kitsilano Beach often gets compared with LA’s Venice Beach. This place is popular among the young crowd, and many people tend to visit when the weather is nice. The beach has volleyball, tennis courts, in-line skating, and a playground. There is a Maritime Museum nearby that you can check out. The Boathouse restaurant is available for formal dining, and various concessions stand to grab some refreshments. From May to mid-September the heated saltwater Kitsilano Pool is open for visitors to enjoy a swim. Try to avoid visiting the place during the summer months, as the beach gets crowded.

7. Queen Elizabeth Park

This is the second most famous park in Vancouver after Stanley Park and attracts more than Six million visitors every year. The park spreads across 130 acres of land and has an arboretum with nearly 1500 native and exotic trees, a rose garden, and a beautifully manicured quarry garden. The Bloedel Conservatory inside this park has a vast collection of fauna. The conservatory has 500 tropical plants, 120 free-flying exotic birds and three different climate zone. Queen Elizabeth Park has various sculptures and the Dancing water fountain. This park located at the highest point of Vancouver; hence one can also enjoy the spectacular view of the city. The park also does not charge any entry fee, but there is a minimal parking fee for the cars.

People visiting Vancouver should go to all the places mentioned above. Although it is a comparatively new city, it has a lot to offer. As the site is ethnically diverse, the tourists can enjoy meeting people of various nationalities. Also, they are guaranteed to eat at multiple different areas that serve different cuisines from all over the world. Make sure you do your research before visiting this place and know the best time to go. Also, be prepared and plan so you don’t waste any time trying to find where to go and which places to visit first. Make an itinerary and follow it to get the complete experience of the fantastic places. This article will help as a guide to cover the best tourist attractions in Vancouver.

Continue Reading

Guide To Avoid Travel Scams

Travel Tips - Amanda - August 2, 2020

Travel Scams to Avoid

Traveling can be an addiction to many of us. Going to a new destination, meeting new people, learning about their culture and food can be an extraordinary experience. But when we travel abroad or to an unknown destination, there are chances of us getting scammed. This article discusses travel scams to avoid when you’re going somewhere new.

Ten scams to avoid when you are traveling

Here is a guide that talks about travel scams to avoid in 2020.

1. Currency Exchange

Exchanging currency is essential while traveling. Make sure to exchange the money before your trip. Visit only trusted currency exchange counters such as airports, banks, western union, etc. Please do not fall for locals who approach you by saying they have the best exchange rate.

2. ATM Scams

Many people in the ATM would offer help when your cash gets jammed. Make sure not to share your details with them. Only visit ATMS of reputed banks and do some research beforehand.

3. Charity Scam

Most of the tourists, the spot has people scamming you in the name of charity. Many people create a fake name of NGOs and forms to get money from you. Be very cautious before signing any piece of paper. If you want to give money to a noble cause, first do some research.

4. The Shell Game

This is a popular way of scamming people. We often see people doing a card trick. If they get it right, we pay some money. Then the person will say if you guess the trick, you’ll get money. But you will not win, as it is a scam and keep on betting money.

5. Child Beggar Scam

We often see a woman carrying a baby and begging. But this has turned into business nowadays. Ignore them until they leave. Or you can buy them food instead of giving money.

6. Pickpockets

This is a common way one can lose their valuables. Someone will bump into you and then walk away. After a while, you’ll notice your valuables missing. Try avoiding crowded places and keep your valuables in a more secure place apart from your pockets.

7. Taxi Scam

Taxi drivers often take a longer route to reach your destination. Try to avoid paying the extra money by booking a cab from a taxi booking application. You can also look into Google maps to get the shortest route.

8. Overpriced goods

When we go street shopping in tourist places, the vendor charges extra money for the items. Make sure you do some research before visiting and bargain to get a great deal.

9. Free products

Most of the time when someone offers free products, it’s a scam. They charge more money later for it. Try to avoid trying anything for free.

10. Friendly guide

The locals who help you when traveling can lead you to a scam. They often help and offer to take you to their shop and sell items at a higher price.

The above-mentioned points are a few travel scams to avoid when you are traveling to your next destination.

Continue Reading