Posts filed under ‘Uncategorized’

Best Alaska Cruise Ship Tours

Alaska cruise ship tourSure, you’ve traveled across the 48 lower states (maybe), but have you been to Alaska yet? This isn’t your typical drive there and back in a week type of place. Alaska is downright inaccessible, and not only hard to get to, but best seen by unconventional methods. Hiking, small planes, and by boat are some of the best ways to see the natural beauty that Alaska has to offer, and the best way to see it by boat (in luxury) is by cruise ship.

This page outlines the very best Alaska cruise ship tours, broken down by cruise ship line, and includes beautiful photos, videos, and an unbiased guide of what to see in the northernmost state of the USA:

Best Alaska Cruise Ship Tours

January 26, 2012 at 4:21 am Leave a comment

The Best Places to Visit in Southern Florida

florida palm treesWe all hear about Orlando, Daytona Beach, and all of the amusements surrounding the central part of Florida, but what about those other beaches, cities, and destinations in the southern part of the state? It’s warm, it’s almost always sunny, and it’s the perfect place to plan a Florida road trip.

There are three major destinations in Southern Florida to choose from, all of which are easily driven to by car. If you’re flying here, the major airports are in Naples, Miami,  andFort Lauderdale. You can take connecting flights to the Florida Keys, or to other parts of the state to the north.

Miami

This is the best known of all of the southern Florida cities. It has some of the best beaches if you like to sit and just people watch, and is known for its hot night club scene. It has a flavor unlike any other city in the USA.

Naples

This city is on the western side, the Gulf Coast, also known as the Paradise Coast. Naples is adjacent to the Everglades, and has some of the very best beaches in the entire state, if not the entire country. A walk down Naples Pier at sunset is sure to be a lasting memory for anyone.

Key West

This is the final stop on the Overseas Highway that heads through all of the Florida Keys. Key West is home to well known historic bars like Sloppy Joe’s, the beautiful Key West Lighthouse, and the daily sunset celebration at Mallory Square. Its laid back atmosphere and tropical temperatures will instantly relax your body and mind.

In addition to these destinations, there are also plenty of other cities to visit that are tourist and local favorites like Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, and Key Largo. The best part of this part of Florida is that the destinations are all relatively close together, so you can pick up and head to the next spot and be there in about an hour.

Read more about Florida with these destination tips, or read about how you can plan an entire southern road trip route with this extensive guide on I-10.

March 29, 2011 at 1:21 pm Leave a comment

Travel to Slovenia

Slovenia Bled LakeSlovenia is small country in the south of Europe and it is often confused with Slovakia or also some other countries. It has only 2 million people with its own language called Slovenian. Despite that the country is very small, it is very diverse because you can find a lot of different things here. You can visit Julian Alps, find interesting lakes, and view beautiful waterfalls. There are also spas, many caves, karst phenomenons, the Adriatic Sea and much more. Because distances are small you can visit many places just in one day.

Lake Bled is one of the most visited tourist places in Slovenia. There you can see the only real island in Slovenia because on the coast in Slovenia there is no one. Above the lake is a castle, so the entire scenery looks like it’s from fairy tale. Not far away from Bled is the interesting Vintgar Gorge.

Another very interesting lake in Slovenia is Lake Bohinj, which is situated on the border of the Triglav National Park. It is the only national park in Slovenia. It is bigger than Lake Bled and has less tourists, so it is more suitable for nature lovers with a lot of possibilities for hiking and different sports.

The Capital of Slovenia is Ljubljana, which is located almost in the centre of Slovenia. So if you stay there, you will have good starting point for every trip in Slovenia. Ljubljana has wonderful old town centre with a castle above that is worth to see. There are also a lot of museums, parks, shopping centres, etc.

Must see sight is Slovenia is also Postojna Cave or Skocjan Caves. Both caves are wonderful so you will not regret to visit any of them. Postojna Cave is interesting also because of train ride at the start of visit. Not so far from Postojna is Predjama Castle that is located in the wall. It is really very interesting with many floors and also some cave behind the castle. During visit of the castle you will discover different hidden passages, torture caves, etc.

Piran is old Mediterranean town with great squares and many narrow streets. Above the city is church of St. George with excellent view of the town and neighbourhood. You can also climb on town walls, visit some museum or just sit down in one of the many bars or restaurants.

These are just short description of Slovenia. Find many other interesting things beside those in the links above, or visit Kraji’s Lensmaster profile on Squidoo.
Intro photo of Bled Lake by flickr user mirci.

Other Posts From the ExSquidition Travel Journal You Might Enjoy:
* 14 Fall Destinations You’ll Never Forget
* How to Plan a Trip to Cape Cod
* Fun Things to do in Auckland, New Zealand
* Tour the Oldest City in Germany: Trier

September 24, 2010 at 6:57 pm 1 comment

14 Fall Vacation Destinations You’ll Never Forget

Paris, fallAutumn is one of the best times of year to take a vacation. The kids are back in school, the temperatures are very comfortable (and sometimes still very warm), and the tourists are also largely gone from many of the most popular vacation destinations across the globe. If you’re thinking about planning a fall vacation, here are twelve fall vacation destination ideas that you can read more about right on this blog:

The Philippines

Active volcanoes, spectacular marine life, and some of the best tropical views and beaches on the planet make the Philippines a growing vacation destination. Underwater wrecks and diverse sea life, as well as one of the biggest coral reefs on the planet make this South Pacific vacation destination perfect for this fall.

Paris

When the summertime temperatures give a slight reprieve in Paris, it also coincides with grape harvest time in the French countryside. In the city, fall is one of the most active times of year for festivals. The brilliant fall foliage only adds to the beauty of this city.

The Netherlands

For such a small country, The Netherlands has an immense tourism industry. Between Belgium and Germany, The Netherlands experiences some of its most comfortable temperatures in the fall season. Visit some of the popular destinations in the city like the Anne Frank House, Rijksmuseum, or the Floating Flower Garden. A trip to the country also wouldn’t be complete without a trip to historic (and sometimes notorious) Amsterdam.

Zion National Park

A lot of people don’t know this, but the best time of year to see the southwest USA is in the autumn. Like the rest of the country, there is some foliage, along with much cooler, drier temperatures. Days are still warm, but not as hot and unbearable as in the summer months. Nights are cool and comfortable, but sometimes can get into the near freezing range. Zion National Park explodes with color in the autumn, as the birches lining the Virgin River invite you into the difficult water hike, The Narrows. It’s not for the novice hiker, and you’ll need some special equipment, but it’s entirely worth the bother. This is one fall vacation  you’d never forget.

Disney World Fall Vacation

The kids are back in school, so this is the time to really get to the park if you want shorter lines and comfortable temperatures! Sure, they just got back in school, but this time of year is great for a vacation (maybe you want to pull them out for a long weekend?). The only downside is that it’s hurricane season, too, so along with the comfortable weather once in a while comes a tropical storm or hurricane. Luckily, Orlando is far inland, so you won’t have to deal with coastal flooding.

Napa Valley

Napa is best seen in the fall months. The area experiences great fall foliage, as well as the annual wine harvest. Along with the harvest, many wineries have parties to kick off the season. Grape leaves turn to orange-red hues, contrasted by vibrant purples.

Southern California

The Southern California region is known for its year-round warm weather, palm trees, and laid back attitude. So why is autumn the best time of year to visit Southern California? The temperatures see their peak in late summer in California, but the air still stays very warm into October. While the area may not see fall foliage, it also doesn’t see nearly as many tourists. That means less lines, less traffic, and lower prices on hotels. Check out cities like Palm Springs, Irvine, Santa Monica, and San Diego for warm weather and views all to yourself.

Germany

Just as the wine flows in the autumn in Paris and Napa, the beer starts to flow from taps everywhere in the fall during Oktoberfest. This celebration is an age old tradition where you can sample some of the best beer Germany has to offer, as well as the culture of the German people. Head to the city of Trier to see the historic sites, to the capital of Berlin to check out the fall foliage, or base your entire trip along the best festivals.

New Zealand

While the Northern Hemisphere experiences its end phase of warm weather and sun during the fall, the Southern Hemisphere countries like New Zealand and Australia are experiencing rebirth in the form of spring. This is the perfect time of year to see beautiful floral blooms and fresh snowcapped mountains in cities like Auckland, or in the beautiful National Parks of New Zealand.

New England

When you think of fall foliage, one place probably comes to mind for U.S residents: the northeast, specifically New England. If you think it’s all a bunch of hype and the colors aren’t as spectacular as people say, you’re wrong. Vermont, New Hampshire, and also Western Massachustts, Upstate New York, and Maine experience tremendous fall color. The rest of the New England states, too, experience beautiful foliage just a few weeks later than the northern states.

Cape Cod

Sure, Cape Cod does reside within New England, but unless you’ve been to the Cape during the summer, you have no idea what it’s like to fight Cape Cod bridge traffic on the busy Sagamore and Bourne Bridges, as well as on the congested highways of Route 28 and Route 6. There are nothing but positives for planning a fall vacation to Cape Cod. No annoying tourists, no fighting over a spot at the beach, and you might not even have to pay to go to the beach. Also, no waits at the best restaurants, and there’s still warm ocean temperatures, especially on Nantucket Sound throughout September and into early October sometimes. One other huge plus is the rates are nearly cut in half (sometimes more) after Labor Day and even more after Columbus Day. The Cape doesn’t experience fall foliage as colorfully as destinations in northern New England, but the color is still there and still impressive to see.

India

Post monsoon season in October-November is a great time to head to India. Drier air means less bugs, and a more comfortable trip for you. Check out the post on taking an India Sabbatical on this blog (link in the header for this section) for travel tips, recommendations, and places to see during any time of year.

Quebec

The fall foliage doesn’t stop at the Canadian border, it keeps on moving north through New England and into the province of Quebec. In the heart of the province, you can find historic Quebec City, which is one of the most European inspired cities west of Europe itself. Fall temperatures are comfortable in the city, and the autumn foliage provides a stunning backdrop to the buildings along the St. Lawrence River.

Yosemite National Park

What is already an impressive National Park in Northern California becomes even more splendid in the fall. With a drop in temperature comes a change in leaf color, as well as a change in the shades of grass, the hue of the sunsets, and the amount of tourists in the park (that’s a theme of this post, and a definite benefit to traveling in the fall!). The park is open until late October, so get your vacation in before then. The park has been known to have brutal snowstorms even in late October that can shut down the park entirely. Plan your trip in September, and then plan to head to Napa on the way back to enjoy wine country. After that, don’t forget about San Francisco, which experiences its highest temperatures in the month of September.

Out looking for leaves this autumn? Leaf peepers, stop by this page for the best fall foliage spots in the United States collected onto one page!

August 6, 2010 at 1:07 pm Leave a comment

Visit the Heritage Park in Irvine, California

Heritage Park is a lovely park located in Irvine, CA. This park is an amazing place for families to enjoy some outdoor fun together. Their wide spaces allow for kids to run all around and enjoy their time with their family. The lovely pond and fountain makes it a peaceful place to simply sit and immerse in the beauty of Mother Nature. Children would certainly love the playground, which would very soon be refurbished and bigger than ever.

Heritage Park also comes with many facilities for those who want to enjoy sports and stay healthy. Heritage Park has great lighted soccer fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, racquetball courts and a volleyball court. These sport facilities at the Heritage Park are not only perfect for some sports fun, but also for sports events organized by the community and schools.

Heritage Park is also great for parties. Their BBQ pits and group picnic areas make this a great outdoor location for your next party or family gathering. The park also homes a wonderful amphitheater that hosts many wonderful shows for everyone to enjoy.

The park also houses the William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center, a great swimming complex, the Irvine Fine Arts Center, The Heritage Park Community Center and The Irvine Heritage Park Library.

Be sure to have some great fun at the Heritage Park when you visit Irvine in Southern California!

Photo credit: Image of Heritage Park by Nazeem Sheik.

Aysha Iqbal contributed this great post for the ExSquidition Travel Journal. Be sure to read her other post on Irvine, California parks here, as well as her collection of lenses on Squidoo.

June 17, 2010 at 4:49 am Leave a comment

An India Sabbatical

Taj MahalIndia – for centuries this vast country has captured the imagination and hearts of westerners, as well as bewilders and frustrates them in good measure!

I went for just a short holiday to Mumbai and Goa and am desperate to go back and explore in greater depth. There is something magical about the light there, the way it filters through the dust and humidity – I just fell in love with this country straight away. I defy anyone to capture the essence of India in one sentence; it is such a country of contrasts and extremes in its geography, religions and culture. Simply put, India is awe-inspiring and not a place that you would have an average opinion of. You will hate it or you will love it!

Left:
Taj Mahal by Nomad Tale at Flickr Creative Commons

I am taking a 6 month career break in September, and 3 months of it will be spent in India. But what can I do when I get there? There are an overwhelming amount of different travel packages on offer on the Internet, from luxury luxury to shoestring and I have painstakingly been researching as many as I can to make the best decision for my sabbatical. I’ve discovered that there is so much more to do than simply sightseeing! You can take a safari to see Indian tigers at Pench National Park, teach English in Rajasthan, help build greenhouses in the Himalayas and so much more besides. If you are very adventurous you can embark on a physically demanding expedition to beautiful Ladakh in Northern India or even circle the whole of India on a 51 day tour. The opportunities are as diverse as the country itself!

Right:

Munnar, KeralaTea Gardens of Munnar, Kerala by Kerala Tourism at Wikimedia Commons

A Career Break in India is my review of what is on offer for travelling to India and what look like the best and most reputable programs and companies on the World Wide Web. Writing this lens has helped me organise myself and clarify what is on offer, I hope it will help others too! As for me, my plans are forming! I would like to volunteer with children in Kerala, then travel to visit the famous Golden Triangle of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur. After that, Ladakh and then Darjeeling beckons with journeying home via Nepal, Mongolia and the Trans Siberian express through Russia, but that is for another lens…

This post is part of a series of guest posts by authors (or lensmasters) on Squidoo. This post was written by lensmaster LKW31. Check out her profile page for more unique lenses like this one!


Bus travel! By Lumière at Flickr Creative Commons

June 16, 2010 at 4:26 pm 1 comment

Visit the City of Irvine, Southern California: Beautiful Parks in Orange County

The City of Irvine is located in Orange County at Southern California. Along with the good community, good schools, housing and reputation that this great city has built over the years, they also have created a marvelous range of lovely parks for both their residents and visitors to enjoy.

All the Irvine parks are filled with colorful flowers, wide spaces and lots of greenery. Each of these parks allows everyone-young and old to stop and appreciate the beauty of Mother Nature. These parks serve as great locations for some family fun, sports activity, to relax and even hold an outdoor party.

Parks in the City of Irvine also come with great facilities like tennis courts, ball courts, playground, picnic sites, barbeque pits and amphitheaters. Irvine Parks are a great location for children and adult to enjoy some sports activities. Many schools host their annual sports events right in these parks.

Parks in Irvine are also a great spot for anyone to merely take a good walk and relax in a calm environment. Visit the park today, watch the joyous families and forget all the stress of your daily life while looking at the pure beauty of colorful flowers, trees, birdlife, and ponds.

Learn more about these amazing parks in the City of Irvine and be sure to see them for real when you come to Irvine in Southern California.

Photo credit: Bil Barber Park, Irvine Nazeem Sheik

ExSquidition Travel Journal is pleased to announce guest posts in the month of June! Here’s a note from the contributing author of this post:

Aysha Iqbal is an online writer who lives in Southern California and does freelance work. Not only does she write articles on Squidoo, she also maintains 2 blogs – “Wonderful Gifts for Wonderful People” and “Journey of this Online Writer Mum”.

Related posts:

June 15, 2010 at 4:44 am Leave a comment

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