China Trip Report – What we learned, what we wish we had known, and why we’d go again. Three Cities, Two Weeks, and One Amazing Trip!
After accepting an invitation from friends, my wife and I finally packed our bags this past October and travelled to China. We decided to visit three cities requiring multiple plane rides and a four hour journey by bullet train, that would have us seeing the Cliff-Notes version of China’s east coast. We’d start south in Guangzhou visiting our friends, then fly to Shanghai, and end our journey by taking the train north to Beijing. We saw a little bit of everything, collecting photos and memories all along the way to last a lifetime.
Sometimes you come across an inn that is so delightful, you feel like you’d like to move right in. That’s exactly the experience we had at the 1837 Cobblestone Cottage Bed and Breakfast in up-state New York. Canaddaigua is both a town and a “finger” lake located just south of Rochester NY, about a five 1/2 hour drive from Boston straight out Rt 90 – the Mass Pike.
Lake Erie Wine Country stretches for 50 miles along the southeastern edge of Lake Erie (Erie, PA to Chautauqua County in up-state New York) and wine tasting is just one of the awesome activities that attract in-the-know travelers to this bucolic corner of America.
What’s that you say….you never heard of it? Well, I suspect everyone has been trying to keep it a secret for themselves. Come along as we discover what makes this region a fun and “spirited” getaway destination well worth discovering.
13 Historic Monuments Where Mystery Prevails
The world is a rich and wonderful place that’s full of surprises. Mysteries can be found in the most unexpected corners of the Earth – and many of them are left unsolved despite centuries of speculation.
Here are 13 mysterious historical monuments, from those well-loved in pop culture, to lesser known curiosities from ancient times, all waiting for your exploration:
The Ramblas: the changing face of Barcelona’s most famous street.
I remember the first time I walked down the Ramblas well. It was February 1998 and Barcelona’s most famous street was full of tourists and locals alike. There were silver-painted human statues, stock still until a coin clattered into their collection boxes, buskers of varying degrees of talent, and card tricksters keeping a keen eye out for the first sign of the law. Whether taking a stroll, people watching, or on their way elsewhere, the street was bustling with activity as people went about their business.
The first Sherlock Holmes story (A Study in Scarlet) was published in 1887 and it took London by storm. It combined cold logic, meticulous observation, forensic science and the now-familiar format of the detective story. Did you know that although Holmes uses fingerprint analysis in his first case, Scotland Yard didn’t introduce the technique until 1901?
Join the team from the London Pass on a Sherlock Holmes self guided walking tour across central London.
Limassol is the second largest city on the island of Cyprus. Stretching along the Mediterranean coast in southeastern Europe, it offers a wide range of activities and landmarks to visit. Limassol is a city on a mission. It has been one of the busiest port cities in the Mediterranean for quite a few centuries but it hasn’t always been a top-of-mind- vacation destination. This is rapidly changing of course, thanks to the dedicated effort of local authorities, citizens and the business community. A large-scale urban remodeling programme has endowed the city with a brand new marina and a beautiful beachfront park. These attractions complement the Old Port and the Medieval Castle, forming a metropolitan area worth exploring and photo shooting
During a tech conference, I was able to stay at the Crowne Plaza in Stamford, Connecticut for the weekend. I was expecting a pretty normal conference: most of my time spent at the event, without a lot of chances to get out of the venue and my hotel and enjoy the rest of my time in Stamford. The tourism opportunities, however, surprised me. As it turns out, there are a number of experiences you can only have in Connecticut. Here are our favorites:
5 Top things to do on your Travels to Sevilla, Spain
Seville, or Sevilla as the locals know it, is the fourth largest city in Spain, located in Andalusia, the southernmost tip of Spain. Founded as the Roman city of Hispalis before being renamed to Ishbiliya during the Muslim conquest of the early 700’s, it’s safe to say that Seville is steeped in history. The Old Town is the third largest in Europe, containing no less than three UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and its harbour is the only river port still in existence in Spain. If you’re a lover of history and culture, Seville has an enormous wealth of attractions it can offer you.
I first discovered Cempoala (sometimes spelled Zempoala) in 1971, only 452 years after Cortés dropped in during 1519. Modern day villagers were delighted to see an outsider. I was virtually passed from family to family to share meals of shrimp soup under palm, mango and banana trees. I questioned: was I touring Mexico or being a unique object on display for the locals?
Located off Federal Highway 180, thirty miles north of Veracruz, the peaceful town is where the first Christian cross was raised on the mainland of the New World.
Unlock The Mysteries of the Land of the Inca with Your Family – It’s a Journey You Will Always Remember.
The high plains of Peru and Ecuador are rich both culturally and ecologically, and travelling there with your children is probably easier than you may think. It’s important to make a solid plan for the journey, and arrange activities and transportation ahead of time, but the result will be an unforgettable adventure for your family.
Re-Discover the Forgotten Movie Locations of Venice Beach California
Picture Venice Beach… Are you seeing surfers, hippies, lifeguards and skateboarders? How about Muscle Beach, the basketball courts, tattoo parlors and world-famous Ocean Front Walk?
But what if you could see it as it was in its hay-day in the early 1900’s when dozens of movies and later hundreds of TV shows chose Venice Beach as their ideal location? Don’t worry if you left your time machine at home, because it just so happens that Venice has been one of the world’s most filmed movie locations for over a century and you can tour to discover its most iconic film locations.
Go Beyond The Tourist Sites and Find A Traditional Experience in Turkey
There’s plenty to see and do in Turkey. We all know about the famous Blue Mosque, the gorgeous cascading Pammaluke terraces, and incredible views of Cappadocia. These are on your list, but what about getting to know the traditional things of the country a bit more? Here are a few extra things to add to your travel list so you’re experiencing more than just the mainstream sites of Turkey.
Discovering The Best Kept Secret Activities of Atlanta
If you live in or have ever traveled to Atlanta, you likely know about attractions such as the Atlanta Braves’ Turner Field, the High Museum of Art, the CNN Center, the Atlanta Zoo, and Piedmont Park. You probably don’t know, however, about the vast array of other activities that are home to this charming southern city. Atlanta has a hidden collection of activities for those who are sick of seeing the same tourist traps time and time again.
Although barely 3% of America’s total residents are Jewish, the Jewish community has contributed significantly to the American landscape and way of life since the 17th century. Throughout the country, museums both small and large have been established attesting to the unique role that American Jews have played in influencing both their heritage and life in America for all citizens.
When travelers who prefer a vegetarian lifestyle go on vacation, it’s often challenging to locate nearby restaurants that offer vegetarian, vegan and gluten free menus. With the whole country seemingly focused on obesity and healthy living, the trend toward vegetarian and vegan lifestyles have skyrocketed. Food items that were once relegated to small dark corners of grocery stores, now occupy prominent and expansive displays. New diet programs encourage us to eat raw, eat local, eat green, eat organic, and to embrace plant-based menus.
10 Rainy Day Activities to Enjoy in Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver is a city known for its rain as much as it is for its natural beauty. You may luck out and have beautiful weather, but it’s best to plan ahead for rainy day activities so that you aren’t stuck in your hotel praying for sun. Here are some of the 10 best activities to keep you and your family fascinated and entertained even when the weather lets you down.
If you love Caribbean culture – the music, the festivals, the food and drink – simply head to London. Apart from the sun, nearly every area in London has something Caribbean to help spice the locale up. Whether you’re looking for a plate full of jerk chicken, a glass of rum punch or a summer festival, our guide will help you navigate London and find the coolest Caribbean vibes.
Two of the trendiest places in London right now are Brixton and Harlesden. Unsurprisingly, both areas have an affluent Caribbean community. Brixton early in the morning is a great place to visit cafes; there’s an abundance to choose from. Negril serves Caribbean toast (spiced toast served with cinnamon and vanilla and toasted coconut), traditional cornmeal porridge and smoothies (the Caribbean Queen drink with papaya, pineapple, mango and a splash of dairy milk) will transport you from the busy streets of London to a tranquil beach in Jamaica.
It seems the world has fallen in love with the idea of renting a beautiful villa and bringing the whole family along on vacation. The number of villa rental sites has expanded dramatically in recent years as have popular home rental sites like VRBO. But one big obstacle to a fabulous rental vacation has always been how to tap into local experiences, events and sightseeing options.
Villas of Distinction To The Rescue. Recently Villas of Distinction, a well respected villa rental company with inventory around the world, has solved this age-old problem by partnering with Excursionist.com a provider of experiential travel and sightseeing excursions. Adding tailor-made travel experiences to your villa rental vacation is now a cinch.
What do you envision when you hear ‘bed and breakfast?’ If you’re like most people, you probably think about an historic Victorian or Queen Anne draped in lace and tucked away in a quaint corner of town. While it’s true that many inns were grand, former homes of the town’s well-to-do, some were not even used as homes at all.
From schoolhouses and churches, to working lighthouses and sail boats, some B&Bs lived completely different lives before opening their doors to travelers and serving up delicious breakfasts. So, next time you fall asleep in class, don’t be too hard on yourself. In fact, you may be onto something!