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Visiting breathtaking Goa – the “Rome of the East”

by amit.uniyal 13. January 2015 07:01

The small State of Goa, situated on India’s western coast, is also popularly called the “Rome of the East” as well as the “Pearl of the Orient”. The palm-fringed mesmerizing beaches, rocking nightlife, culinary delights, ornate temples, beautiful churches, elegant old Portuguese mansions and majestic forts – all these and much more has brought fame to this exotic land world over.

This magnificent state is a must visit for every domestic and foreign tourist. This fascinating place is ready to keep the visitors spellbound with its stunning natural beauty, and offer a glimpse into the cultures, traditions and lifestyle of the local people. But before you decide to spend your holidays in this amazing destination, here are some of the basic facts you need to know about Goa.

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Important facts to know about Goa

  • The months of October through March are the best time to visit the state. A salubrious climate will please the visitors during this time.
  • Goa can be easily reached by air from major cities of India and also some foreign countries as well. The main Dabolim Airport, situated 29 km from the capital city of Panjim, handles full service airlines and major low cost carriers.
  • The state offers many tourist attractions. The famous attractions here include Agauda Fort, Colva Beach, Saint Augustine Church, Calangute Beach, Spice Plantation Garden, Dona Paula, Anjuna Beach, Basilica of Bom Jesus, Manguesh Temple, Mayhem Lake, Dona Paula, Chapora Fort and Dudhsagar Fall.
  • The state is also an ideal destination for adventure tourism. Some of the popular water sports and adventure activities here include windsurfing, angling, scuba diving, swimming, parasailing, snorkeling, diving and water-skiing.

With so much to see, do and enjoy here, Goa is absolutely one of the best destinations in India to spend a leisurely and fabulous vacation.

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Things to know about Cancun before visiting resort destination

by amit.uniyal 12. January 2015 05:01

Cancun, a key resort destination in Mexico, is also acknowledged as one of the prominent destinations in the Caribbean with all the modern amenities and infrastructure rivaling popular leisure destinations worldwide. Cancun was essentially built for tourism and the city has ever since been catering to over 3.3 million tourists from different parts of the world every year. With its plentiful natural beauty, cultural treasures and endless activities, the city is one of the most sought after destinations for a relaxed and luxurious vacation.

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Here are some of the important facts about Cancun you need to know about before visiting this beautiful resort destination.

  • Cancun is divided into two parts – Zona Hotelera or Hotel Zone and El Centro or Cancun City Downtown. The Hotel Zone is spread in a 22-km sandy strip with numerous hotels here. El Centro is on the mainland and home to several Mexicans.
  • Cancun was developed in 1967 to boost tourism in Mexico. The city was considered to be an important part of the ancient Mayan civilization and is still acknowledged as a gateway to El Mundo Maya or fabled Mayan World.
  • The city is presently the most visited tourist destination in Mexico. With over 25,000 hotel rooms, the tourists find it convenient to stay in the city and enjoy their vacations.
  • Cancun is known for its remarkable biodiversity. With over 1200 plant species, 100 different kinds of mammals and 475 bird species, the city also offers itself as a popular destination for eco-tourists as well.  
  • The easy accessibility from many North American gateways, natural beauty and pleasant weather has made the city quite popular with tourists from the United States and Canada.

These are some of the basic facts that are pertinent to know before you make plans to spend your vacations in Cancun.

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Egypt – Exploring the oldest tourist destination on Earth

by amit.uniyal 9. January 2015 04:43

Egypt is considered to be the oldest destination on Planet Earth. The very name of this country conjures up images of the Pharaohs, Sphinx, the Great Pyramid and mighty River Nile. A visit to this magnificent country is indeed fascinating. The tourists are offered varied attractions. Let’s take a look at all that you can see and do in this beautiful place.

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Major Highlights in Egypt

  • A tour of Egypt will enthrall the visitors with its many attractions. These include the Valley of the Kings, the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities, Sphinx, the Great Pyramid, the Giza Plateau, Temples along River Nile, and many more.
  • visit to Cairo, the capital city of Egypt, offers great sightseeing opportunities. Some of the important attractions in this seething megalopolis include medieval mosques, old-fashioned bazaars, fortified gates, skyscrapers, villas, museums, the pyramids at Dahshur, and the vast necropolis of Saqqara, among others.
  • Explore the Nile Valley. It’s a major tourist attraction. The Theban Necropolis housing the remains of Tutankhamun and other famous pharaohs in the Valley of the Kings is just great to visit.
  • The magnificent temples of Karnak in the town of Luxor are cynosure of all eyes. The southernmost city of Aswan also provides a lovely setting on the River Nile providing a languorous ambience.  
  • The country also has plenty of natural wonders. The Sinai Peninsula with its amazing coral reefs provides excellent snorkeling and diving options.
  • The resort destinations of the Gulf of Aqaba and Sharm el-Sheikh are simply great to visit. They shouldn’t be missed at all costs.

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Cairo – A trip to Africa’s largest city

by amit.uniyal 8. January 2015 02:47

Cairo, the capital city of Egypt, is presently the largest city in both the Muslim world and African continent. Sometimes, also called Misr el-Qahira, it is renowned world over as the “Gateway to the East”. This historic city has transformed over the centuries and is now an alluring modern city interspersed with populous Arab dwellings and bazaars coexisting harmoniously with European-styled high-rise blocks, squares and streets. The city is home to many popular attractions and visited by millions of tourists from different parts of the world every year.

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Here are some of the top rated attractions in Cairo that a quintessential tourist would always want to visit.

  • Visit the Postal Museum housed at the Head Post Office building near the Opera Square. It is functioning since 1940 and has over 1,200 exhibits, including air mail, stamps, postal equipment and statistics.
  • Explore Old Cairo, the historic part of the city lying within the walls of historic Old Babylon. With its rich history and culture, this area is among the top tourist destinations in the city. The Coptic Museum and Church of St Sergius are among major highlights here.
  • The famous Liberation Monument at the spacious Midan el-Tahris or Liberation Square is a must visit. It is the main hub of this modern city. It is home to the National Assembly, American University and major government buildings.
  • Spend time visiting the Egyptian Museum. It was founded in 1857 and is the best tourist attraction in the city. It is presently home to the world’s largest collection of Greco-Roman and Egyptian artifacts. The major highlights here include jewelries, mummies, Tutankhamun Mask, Tutankhamun Coffin and treasures of Tutankhamun.

Apart from these, there are many other attractions in the city that are just waiting to be explored.

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Reasons to visit Brazil during December-February

by amit.uniyal 7. January 2015 04:29

Brazil with plenty of natural attractions and adventure activities options, and, of course, warm climate, is a perfect holiday destination to visit round the year. Its two major cities – Rio de Janeiro and the Amazon – are simply fabulous destinations to visit. Rio de Janeiro attracts millions of tourists from around the world to its gorgeous beaches and the famous Rio Carnival, while the Amazon is a major attraction for eco-tourists with its biodiversity and abundant natural attractions.

If you are planning a vacation to Brazil, then the summer months of December through February are the best and most popular with the tourists. Here are some of the things that you can look forward to when visiting during these months.

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What to expect in Dec-Feb  

  • Surfing - being the best season of the year. Visit Santa Catarina known for its fabulous beaches. You will love surfing along its coast.
  • Angling and boat excursions  - head to Rio Negro and Rio Solimoes, the tributaries of River Amazon ideal for this adventure sport.
  • Celebrate Christmas – visit the mountains of Campos do Jordão. Many attractions and a series of events await you. The celebrations take place from late December to January 6. Get ready to enjoy amazing fireworks display on New Year’s Eve.
  • Rio Carnival - visit Rio de Janeiro for the world-famous carnival marked by samba dance, music, floats, parades and many other competitions. It will take place from February 13 through February 18, 2015.
  • Summer festival in Blumenau - an important event in Santa Catarina city, a German immigrants-dominated area. The Sommerfest will be marked with weekly celebrations of German dancing, music and food. It will be held throughout February at Parque Vila Germanica.

 

These are undoubtedly the popular events held during the summer season in Brazil and provide enough reasons to visit this beautiful country.

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Eco-tourism and sightseeing opportunities in Dominican Republic

by amit.uniyal 5. January 2015 04:15

Dominican Republic is a land of myriad natural wonders. It’s the most geographically diverse nation presently in the Caribbean region. The country has plethora of natural attractions such as desert expanses, mangrove swamps, alpine ranges and tropical rainforests. With its excellent eco-tourism and adventure travel options, this popular Caribbean destination has become a hotspot for watersport enthusiasts, trekkers, mountain-bikers and others who love outdoor activities. Apart from nature’s wonders, the country also offers myriad sightseeing opportunities for those interested in art, culture and history. Here are some of the best things that a quintessential visitor would like to see and do in this beautiful place.

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What all to do and see in Dominican Republic

  • Visit the Zona Colonial in Santo Domingo. It’s a must for every tourist who wants to know more about the country’s colonial past. It is home to some important historical buildings in the Americas.
  • Make a visit to the Columbus Lighthouse to see the remains of the legendary explorer Christopher Columbus being kept here and fully preserved under a majestic sarcophagus. This huge cross-shaped monument also plays the role of a world museum.
  • Spend time at the vast Casa de Campo resort, where you can pursue various kinds of activities such as playing golf, riverboat fishing, scuba diving, tennis, shooting and horseback riding. The golf course named “Teeth of the Dog” has received acclaim from worldwide.
  • If you are traveling to the Dominican Republic particularly during the month of February, you will be fortunate to take part in the annual carnival in the city of La Vega. This takes place during the last weekend of the month. This most raucous and colorful carnival in the country attracts more than 100,000 carnivalers on to the city’s streets.

These are only some of the important reasons that become prime attractions for the tourists to visit the Dominican Republic. Do remember to visit this beautiful country to explore the unexplored.

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Visiting Buenos Aires – the Paris of South America

by amit.uniyal 2. January 2015 04:01

Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina, has been attracting millions of tourists from world over endlessly with its perfect blend of South American flair and European charm. It is therefore no wonder that this elegant city has itself earned the epithet of the “Paris of South America”. With its passionate football fans and world-class soccer stadium, colorful artistic barrios, many avant-garde museums, neoclassical architecture, wide boulevards, street-side tango sessions, and above all friendly and fashionable natives, the city of Buenos Aires is simply a fascinating destination to enjoy your vacations.

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Top Reasons to visit Buenos Aires

  • Explore Palermo, the sprawling, chic neighborhood in north Buenos Aires. It is divided into three parts – Palermo Viejo, Palermo Chico and Alto Palermo. Major attractions here include urban parks, museums, beautiful mansions, film studios, festive outdoor markets, lively tapas bars, bustling cafés and high-end boutiques.
  •   Visit the Fería De Mataderos or Fair of the Mataderos. This provides you great opportunity to experience and enjoy the local Argentinean culture quite closely. You will be extremely thrilled to see guachos sauntering on majestic horses, vendors selling crafts ware, food stalls offering an array of local delicacies, and ornately dressed tango dancers performing on the streets. There will be so much to see and savor here. The festive fair is held on every Sunday starting from 11 am till 8 pm.
  • Take respite with the Rose Garden Walk. When you visit the Parque Tres de Febrero or Palermo Woods for strolling in the tranquil rose garden, the tranquil atmosphere is sure to keep you spellbound for a long time. This is also a perfect opportunity for you to get thrilled on seeing more than 1,000 species of roses here.  

 

There are many reasons that will keep you attracted throughout your stay in the magnificent city of Buenos Aires.

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Ring in the New Year with some unusual drops around the USA

by amit.uniyal 31. December 2014 01:52

New Year is just round the corner and we all are very happy to ring in the New Year. There are numerous ways to do so, apart from the classic and the ever famous ball drop at the Times Square in New York. Let us get to know more about the other fun ways to welcome 2015 all around the USA.

Renowned as the “Mushroom Capital of the World”, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania hosts an eight foot long stainless steel mushroom drop. Called as Midnight in the Square, the event starts at 9 pm. Lowered from a height of 85 feet; this sparkling lit mushroom weighing 500 pound will touch the grounds exactly at the onset of the New Year.

New Year Celebration

Visit Duval Street, New Orleans to be a part of the famous red shoe drop. Held at the Bourbon St. Pub, a long-a familiar party spot becomes all the more happening on the New Year’s Eve. The world famous drag queen sushi elegantly rides the sparkling red shoe, which is dropped from the top of the New Orleans House as the midnight strikes.

Port Clinton, Ohio celebrates the New Year with not a plane or a bird but a FISH. A huge 20-foot long, 600 pound fish is lowered from the sky. Know as the Walleye Drop, the event is being held from the past 19 years. Apart from the drop, Wylie the Walleye and walleye-themed street vendors are few other highlights of this night.

Enjoy a New Year drop the Mexican way. Las Cruces “The City of the Crosses" in New Mexico celebrates the New Year's Eve by dropping a 15 foot lighted chile. Illuminated using nearly 400 LEDs, this will be its first ever drop.

There is something for wine lovers too. Head to Temecula Civic Center, Temecula, CA at 9 pm to be a part of the Great Temecula Grape Drop. This is a family-friendly event which will include two countdowns – one to coincide with the New York time and other with local time. Huge bunch of grapes, weighing more than 250 pounds and illuminated using nearly 4500 LEDs will descent at the reverse countdown.

Another interesting New Year drop can be witnessed at Riverfront Pavilion on Second & Busseron Streets. This is where the 7th Watermelon Drop will occur. An 18-foot, 500-pound watermelon will be dropped from the sky to mark the year 2015. Fireworks, toys and glow sticks, music and more can be enjoyed beginning 9 pm.

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Visiting Australia to get The Taste of Tasmania

by amit.uniyal 22. December 2014 06:38

A holiday in Australia can be best enjoyed during its summer months from December through February. When you are visiting this seventh continent of the world during these months, get ready to enjoy “The Taste of Tasmania”, one of the most famous food festivals here.

This food festival will be held at Hobart from 28th December 2014 till 3rd January 2015. This is one such occasion when you will savor various kinds of dishes and also enjoy the lively New Year’s Eve party.

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There are several reasons for you to attend this popular food festival. Though Tasmania is a small island, but it has carved a niche for itself on the Australian gastronomy. This fabulous waterfront event attracts 300,000 visitors every year. The year 2014 is going to see even much bigger presence than previous years.

The culinary skills of the chefs from the island state of Tasmania will be on full display. An array of delicious dishes awaits you. During the past events the visitors got opportunity to enjoy different kinds of traditional food such as Tasmanian pepperberries, Bruny Island opossum made with garlic and duck fat and slow-cooked wallaby burritos. This year you can look forward to exotic seafood delicacies such as Thai mussels poached in cider, salmon sausages and ocean trout, or oysters dressed with olive oil, tarragon and Pernod, shallots.

For all those with a sweet tooth, there’s much more in store at this year’s event. You can look forward to relishing cannoli stuffed with hazelnut ricotta, milk chocolate, toasted coconut and cherries. There’s another variety available as well. This includes cannoli filled with basil, pepperberries and balsamic strawberries.

Apart from enjoying the food festival, the spectacular display of fireworks on the city’s waterfront at Hobart on New Year’s Eve is also ready to delight you endlessly. The dazzling fireworks display will start from 9.30 pm until midnight.

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Enjoying vacations in Argentina during winter

by amit.uniyal 19. December 2014 06:28

Argentina is big and beautiful Latin American nation where there are endless opportunities abound to enjoy your vacations during winter. There are at least two places in the country which are simply the best to visit during this season. You should surely consider visiting the beach destination of Mar del Plata as well as Salta.

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Why Mar del Plata

  • It is a beach destination
  • Less frequented during winters makes it the best place for people who love less crowd
  • Cheaper vacation
  • Attractions at low fee and stay at cheaper accommodations

Things to do here:

  • Strolling on the beach here
  • Enjoy hot chocolate and churros - great favorites with the locals and tourists
  • Sing your heart out at one of the Karaoke Clubs
  • Visit Mar del Plata Aquarium and see the famous dolphin show

Why Salta:

  • For Salta Canyons
  • This picturesque city looks best during this time of the year
  • To savor full-bodied red wine and locro, tamale


Things to do:

  • Ride the Gondola to reach San Bernardo Mountain
  • Visit Museo de Arqueologia de Alta Montanaand to learn about mummies
  • Enjoy Peña entertainment and folkloric music, entertaining live shows at Balcarce Street

Still looking for more information about the city, then browse our city guide section and learn more about Argentina and things to do during winters.

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