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Ireland Vacations

Thursday, September 13th, 2007

When in Ireland, you will be sure to find many interesting places to visit including Ballina, Cork, Dingle, Dublin, Galway, Kenmare, Kilkenny, Killarney, Kinsale, Limerick and also Sligo as well as Tralee. Ireland is also a great tourist destination and you might want to start your holiday in Dublin where there is plenty to do and see including Brougham Bridge, Cruise Port, Dillon Garden and also Dublin Grand Canal. In addition, you can visit the Abbey and Peacock Theatre, Belvedere House, Ceol – Irish Traditional Music Centre, Collins Barrack, Dublin Custom House, Dublin Writers Museum and the excellent Four Courts.

There is also the General Post Office that is worth visiting as too the Garden of Remembrance, Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, and National Wax Museum and a number of churches, abbeys and cathedrals including the likes of St. Mary’s Abbey, St. Mary’s Church, St. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral and also St. Michan’s Church. Suffice to say, that when in Dublin there will not be any shortage of interesting sights to see.

Round Tower of Kilmacduagh, Ireland

Another place worth visiting in Ireland is Limerick where there is the English Town in which you can visit City Court House, King John’s Castle and also Sarsfield Bridge, while the St. Mary’s Cathedral is another outstanding place to visit as too is Thomond Bridge.

In the Irish Town there is Granary, Hunt Museum/Custom House, Jim Kemmy Municipal Museum and also St. John’s Cathedral as well as St. John’s Square that you will like to visit. Other places of interest include People’s Park in Newton Perry, O’Malley Sculpture Collection in Plassey as well as many more places such as Carrigogunnell Castle in the surrounding areas.

You might also want to visit Galway where you could see Eyre Square and Browne’s Gateway, Galway Cathedral, Galway Harbor, Lynch’s Castle and the excellent St. Nicholas’s Church and plenty more.

Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

Shimla – The Queen of the Hill Stations

Friday, July 6th, 2007

Shimla is situated in North India and is a very well renowned and sought after hill station both by Indians and foreign tourists. This city owes its name to Goddess Shyamala, which is another form of the powerful Goddess Kali. A temple for this Goddess was consecrated here, in the middle of the Jakhu Hill forest in the 19th century. The city was named Shimla by the English during their occupation of the Indian territory.

Shimla, India

What You Should See In Shimla?

As a great tourist attraction Shimla has a lot to offer in terms f natural beauty and historic monuments. Some of the must-see in Shimla are briefly described below:

1. The Jaku Hill – this is situated just two kilometers outside Shimla. This is the highest peak in Shimla at 8000 feet. On the top you will find a beautiful Hanuman temple which hosts a great number of monkeys who are perpetually waiting to be fed.

2. The Annadale – this is one of the most favorite picnic spots in Shimla. Situated at an enviable height of 6117 feet above sea level, it offers a breathtaking panorama for those who dare to reach at the top.

3. Kufri – Just 16 kilometers from Shimla this is the best spot to learn skiing in winter (January and February). High above the sea leave at 8.600 km height, this place is an ideal picnic spot as well as sports hub.

4. The Mall – this is a must-stop for all those who want to take home some souvenirs for their friends and family at home. You will find here a kaleidoscope of shops, restaurants, bars, clubs, etc. There are two exclusive points for meetings – i.e. where youngsters just hang out – these two places are, The Ridge and The Scandal points.

5. The Christ Church – this is renowned as he second oldest Church in North India. The Church has stood stoically against the ravages of time and nature and still stands in it full majesty promoting the story of Christ and His eternal love through the exquisite glass paintings. This is definitely a must-see when in Shimla.

6. Museums – there is a distinguished museum – the Shimla State Museum – which have managed to show case the best possible face of this wonderful town. You will find a surprising number of miniature Pahari paintings, jewelry, bronze or wood carvings seem to come alive in this museum.

7. The Summer Hill – you will find this Summer Hill at a distance of about 5 km from the Ridge, at a height of 6,500 ft above the sea level, right on the Shimla-Kalka railway line. This is the place where Mahatma Gandhi took rest whenever he was this side. He always advised, ‘eat for yourself, and dress for others’.

Check out with the doctor before you start any type of herbal diet. It usually okay the way it is – and adding few more Rupees would really not mind.

Kuala Lumpur – A Guide to Some of the Must-See Places

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

Kuala Lumpur is a great place to visit anytime of the year. This is a paradise for people who love sight seeing and shopping. You would find a lot of the famous exquisiteness that the Orient is so famous about, as well as great food and even greater diversity of entertainment. Some of the must-see places when you visit Kuala Lumpur are given below:

1. The Mega Mall – this is specially a great stop for those who love shopping. This is a giant shopping mall where you would find anything you can think about in the hundred odd shops aggregated here. You could really shop until you drop here. There are plenty of restaurants that serve excellent meals and fast food for those in-between shopping moments. This is a sure-fire way to have fun and get some excellent stuff for those at home.

2. Revolving restaurant on the top of the Telecommunications Tower – you can have a fascinating view with your meal while also enjoying one of the tallest structures in Kuala Lumpur – the Telecommunications Tower. You may like to take the lift – though some prefer to climb the 2000 odd steps (the Tower is 421 meters tall) – to the top where you would be regaled by the view of the city. For those who want to savor the place for a while, a meal at the revolving restaurant here on the top of the world could be just the right thing.

3. Taman Tasik Perdana (The Lake Gardens) – nature enthusiasts cannot miss this exceptional exhibition of flowers and birds. The Lake Gardens are sprawled over an unending 90 acres of land around a man-made lake. You will find here stunning exhibits of orchids, hibiscus, birds and so many other attractions that would keep you entertained for hours.

Taman Tasik Perdana, Kuala Lumpur

4. The Petronas Twin Towers – this is the tallest of the buildings in Kuala Lumpur standing at an impressive 452 meters height. The beauty of the architecture of this place is unparalleled. Famous as the second tallest building in the world, the Petrona Twin Towers would thrill you with the splendid view of the city. While you are up there do not forget to visit the viewing deck on the sky bridge that joins the twenty-first floors of the Twin Towers. This experience is something you would definitely not forget in a hurry.

5. The Batu Caves – you will find the Batu Caves just outside the city limits towards Kuantan. This place, besides being stunningly beautiful, is a significant and scared place to visit for Hindu people. The caves are about 100 meters high and about 400 meters long. Your visit to the Batu caves would be very entertaining due to the “hospitality” of the monkey which would accompany you during the visit. Keep some nuts handy if you are fond of animals. The monkeys look forward to the tidbits.

Frankfurt – The Unforgettable City

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

As a tourist you would be awed by the beauty of this wonderful city. There are a myriad of things to see and experience in Frankfurt. You will find here entertainment, culture, festivals, beer and many other things that Germany is famous for. One thing that would definitely leave some impact on you is the excellent German jazz that you will find played at almost all the available taverns in the city.

Frankfurt Opera and Eurotower

Some of the must-see and must-experience sights in Frankfurt are briefed below:

1. Local Cuisine – if you are among the people who simply have to know about the local culture and cuisine, the Lorsbacher Tal is a good place to start your quest. This is an exceptional apple wine serving restaurant which offers you solid German ambiance and excellent local cuisine.

2. Jazz in Frankfurt – This is a small but delightful restaurant where along with the excellent meals served you would be regaled with some extraordinary music. This could be anything from a Flamenco dance to Jazz, to Blues, to Swing. The ambiance here is relaxed and food excellent.

3. A Rendezvous with Culture – Frankfurt hosts the house of the famous poet Goethe. The poet lived in this house until 1775. The house is now converted into a museum and National Monument open to visitors.

4. The Senckenberg Museum – you will find in this museum an extraordinary collection of more than 500 thousand exhibits on the development of earth and life on earth over the past million of years. This is simply fascinating to say the least.

5. Nature Lovers Behold – The Palmengarten or the Palm Garden should definitely be on your list of must-sees if you are a nature lover. This is a huge garden and park spread over 20 acres exhibiting some mind-boggling 300 varieties of orchids and over 1600 species of cactus.

6. The Zoo – Since we are speaking of nature lovers, can animal lovers be left far behind? Frankfurt has an excellent zoo which houses some 650 types of animals. There are about 6,000 animals accommodated in this zoo – and the arrangements are delightful. Keep a whole day in hand if you are planning to visit this zoo. There is plenty to see and enjoy here with the animals.

7. Night Sights – What is a visit to Frankfurt if you have not seen the Berger Strasse or the Berger Road. This road is famous for its night life, bars, round the clock cafes and restaurant. There is not one dull moment on this street and people who visit it once would love to return again and again.

The above is not an exclusive list, so feel free to explore the attractions of this wonderful city, called Frankfurt. This is a city that would remain with your forever.

Amsterdam – The City of Tulips and Windmills

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

Netherlands has always been synonymous with tulips and windmills. This is why when you say Amsterdam, the first thing that comes to one’s mind are these very things. However, there is more to the lovely city of Amsterdam than flowers and renewable energy sources. Amsterdam is a delightful place with plenty of impressive things to see:

1. A Glimpse into Amsterdam History – visit the Rijksmuseum is you are fond of culture and history. This museum specializes in exhibiting art from the Golden Age. Art lovers would love to visit the Rembrandt and the Van Gogh museums too, which have some stunning exhibits from these ageless masters. A short visit to Anne Frank’s house – the little girl whose diary describing her ordeal during Nazi occupation has become an international bestseller – would give you a glimpse into the horror of the past when the Jews were fighting for their lives against one of the most cruel and condemnable periods in history.

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

2. Shopping for a Souvenir – for people who love shopping the Albert Cuypmarkt is the ideal place. This is a huge shopping mall which has absolutely everything you would ever want to buy and more. You can spend months window shopping in this mall without getting bored. Enjoy a day long leisure shopping day here and ensure that you get some memorabilia for your friends at home from here.

3. The Nightlife in Amsterdam – there is round the clock entertainment in Amsterdam which means that whether it is night or day you are guaranteed to have fun wherever you are. However, for people who love night life activities, a visit to the Leidseplain would be lovely. You will find here plenty of night clubs, 24 hours restaurants and cafes, as well as cultural entertainment. At Leidseplain, every where you turn would be an opportunity for fun.

4. Its Festival Time! – people who visit Amsterdam during June would have the benefit of experiencing the Holland Festival which is held during the month of June every year over a period of three weeks. And then there is the Queen’s Day where people who believe in same sex love and marriage celebrate on the streets. By the way, the Netherlands was one of the first countries to accept and recognize legally this type of attraction.

Everything in Amsterdam is simply great – the sights, the people who tend to go out of their way to welcome visitors and make them feel comfortable, the nightlife, the flowers, the great culture – everything would make you forget that before you visited this grand city, you were thinking that Amsterdam was only the City of Tulips and Windmills.

Sun and Fun in the Beaches of Grand Cayman

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

The island of Grand Cayman is situated on top of a mountain of corals and is a place well worth visiting especially if you want to experience the thrills of scuba diving. The Caribbean waters are also famous for their corals that descend steeply into the waters and which will provide you with some splendid as well as unique dives down into the waters that are a challenge for every diver. In addition, the Grand Cayman Island also provides many places ideally suited for diving and with unquestionably fantastic underwater delights you will be hard pressed to find a better location for scuba diving adventures.

Grand Cayman Beach

There are plenty of well known dive sites on the Grand Cayman which you will find are situated on the west of the island and this area goes by the name of West Wall and it is very easy to reach here as all that it takes for you is to hop on a boat and soon you will find that you are on the beach that is not far from resorts. Among the famous dive sites you can check out Armchair Reef as well as Aquarium Reef that are certain to offer a wide assortment of underwater species and novice divers as also snorkelers won’t be able to get enough of this experience. Another dive site worth a visit is Wildlife Reef.

To the windward side of the island you can also find amazingly sharp coral walls and it is here that there are some of Island’s better known and reputable dive sites in the world in close proximity to the sandy beaches. Be sure to check out Stingray City that is ideally suited for all manner of divers as well as snorkelers irrespective of their ages and levels of skill. You can easily dive down beneath the surface of the water and swim along with groups of Southern Stingrays that even have wingspans of as much as four feet and the thrill of snapping pictures and giving food to these stingrays in Stingray City is indeed very special.

You may also want to check out the Grand Cayman Islands’ east side where in spite of the relatively scanty number of diving operators in action, you will be hard pressed to locate better as well as untouched coral reefs than these, and with tunnels within easy reach of the reefs along with many caves that lie beneath the water’s surface and also arches you will have a pretty exciting time diving in these parts of the island. You should try out the areas that have special attraction which is best seen in Babylon that has abundant fish, sponges as well as sea turtles.

There is also plenty more in store for you in Grand Cayman and your visit here would be rather incomplete without at least diving down to view the wrecks. You could look for The Balboa that sank in 1932 when a storm was blowing and which is a three hundred seventy five feet cargo ship that is nestling at the bottom at depths of only thirty feet. The place where you will find this wreckage is known as Georgetown Harbor. However, pride of place as far as wreck dives is concerned goes to Oro Verde that is a freighter covered with corals and which is resting at just sixty feet depth just off the beach’s shore.

Take a Vacation to Yucatan, Mexico

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

For those that want to enjoy summertime, there would hardly be a better place to visit than the Yucatan peninsula where you can enjoy a glorious time whenever you visit here during certain summer months. If you come here during the months July and August you will encounter many bustling crowds and during the months between September and June, you will find the place pretty much deserted and very low key.

Be sure to come in July and August and sample the excellent Yucatan cuisine and for more fun and frolic head out over the weekends to Progresso where you can see bands playing music on the beaches and there is also many a crowd there as well. There is also the Hobie Cat regatta that is big draw in the summers and one of the biggest of these regattas is the Cummins Cup that will take place just off from the Marina Silcer in Chicxulub on the weekends. Such events prove that the Yucatan is more than pyramids and also colonial cities and with wonderful beaches there are also these special events as well to make life more enjoyable. So, don’t hesitate and head down to Marina Silcer and hit the beach running where the crowds are huge and the fun is aplenty.

Chichen Itza in Yucatan, Mexico

There is also free Saturday night Fiesta Mexicana and the fun spills over to Sundays as well with the free Merida en Domingo in the streets of Merida. When these events are taking place, the streets are out of bounds for traffic and the many bands, vendor artists as well as cafes will enliven the atmosphere greatly.

Be prepared for the high temperatures that can reach the mid to high nineties and when taking any daytime activities, you must remember to stay well hydrated. It pays to wear cool clothing and a hat and also pace your activities and try and do them in the mornings and then later on in the evenings. There is also plenty of rainy weather to contend with and don’t be surprised that it normally rains between three in the afternoon and five in the evenings. After the showers, you may want to take a stroll, try the free cultural activities and even perhaps check out the sorbets at Helados Colon on the Main Plaza. An evening would be made even more enjoyable by taking a horse and buggy ride that is known as “calesas”.

The state of Yucatan is situated on the Yucatan Peninsula and the Yucatan itself is made up of three states on the peninsula that include Yucatan, Campeche as well as Quintana Roo, all of which are modern states and the state capital of the Yucatan is known as Merida.

The state of Yucatan was once the home of the Mayan civilization till the Spanish arrived and there are still many archaeological remains that bear testimony to the ceremonial architecture that goes back some three thousand years. Even today, the Yucatan is a good example of a very unique culture that is different from the rest of Mexico and even the food is very different from normal Mexican fare.

Cruising the Norwegian Fjords

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

It should not come as a big surprise that the most popular World Heritage site is the Norwegian Fjords. The reason most certainly is because each fjord has its own characteristics as well as attractions and you will find Geirangerfjord to have the tallest and also the most scenic waterfalls in the country. Also, the longest fjord in the world is in Norway and is called Sognefjord, where Naeroyfjord is an arm of this fjord and which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Norwegian Fjords, Norway

If you want to seriously explore the many fjords of Norway, you would do well to make a beginning from the Hanseatic city known as Bergen that also has the honor of being the European City of Culture in 2000 and there is also a lot of other attractions in this city besides the fjords such as the Wharf, the Fish Market and Mount Floien and the city is also the starting point for Norwegian Coastal Express.

This kingdom that lies on the western part of the Scandinavian Peninsula is very long and has the countries of Sweden, Finland as well as Russia on its borders, and obviously is most famous for its fjords. The country also includes the islands of Svalbard and Jan Mayen that are part of its territories, and this country has the distinction of also having been voted the most peace loving country in the world.

A visit to this northern European country holds much promise besides its fjords and it also is known as the Land of the Midnight Sun due to the fact that some parts in the north of the country never see the sun go down at night. There, you may want to visit the town of Tromso because here the sun does not rise in the winter and does not set in midsummer.

The capital of the country is Oslo where you can ski at the famous ski jump in the city and take in some serious theater at the National Theater and the city is also the most populated of all cities and towns in Norway having one tenth of the total population living here. A main attraction is the Munch Museum as too are the National Gallery, Norwegian Museum of Applied Arts, and the Thor Heyerdahl Kon-Tiki Museum as also the Norwegian Folk Museum. And, a central feature of downtown Oslo is the Kongelige Slott or Royal Palace which is the home of the present Queen of Norway.

A trip to Skien may be worth your while especially if literature holds a special place in your heart because the famous playwright called Ibsen was born here. A visit to Stavanger will show you the largest collection of wooden buildings in Europe and the former capital of Norway Trondheim is also a major tourist attraction.

In Tromso you can sample beer at the world’s northernmost brewery, and to the southwest is Fjordland that is the most important tourist area in Norway where cruise ships take you down the coast of Norway starting from Stavanger all the way up to Haugesund. And you can head to the Hardangervidda Mountains for some excellent glacier walks as well.