Monthly Archives: November 2015

Three Must-Visit World Heritage Sites in USA

UNESCO, which stands for United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, has a list of natural and cultural sites which mark a special place in the geography and history of a specific region. Out of this list, 22 such beautiful sites are located in the US. If you are planning to visit the US, do not miss these three major UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park is one of the most-visited places in the US, and has often been referred to in Hollywood flicks.


With a depth of 1,500 metres, the Grand Canyon is one of the most astounding gorges across the globe. It has been in existence for over 2 billion years, which is nearly half the age of our planet. There are more than 1,000 species of flora in the park and more than 100 species of animals and over 300 avian species. All this makes it an adventurous venue for nature and wildlife enthusiasts. But that’s not all; there are over 2,600 identified prehistoric ruins here that make it an exciting place for history buffs.

Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty in the New York City Harbour has been a symbol of democracy and freedom. Also called Liberty Enlightening the World, it was gifted to the city by the French in the year 1876.


The statue, designed by Gustav Eiffel and Frédéric Bartholdi stands on the Liberty Island as a sign of welcome to the immigrants who have been coming here to start a new life. In 1984, it was added to the list of World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO due to its symbolic and cultural significance, and the enormous size of the monument. Visitors are allowed to explore the statue. If you want to visit the pedestal or the crown, we recommend you to reserve tickets in advance.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the most popular attractions in America. The majority of the globe’s natural geysers are situated in the park, including the famous Old Faithful.


While the park is mainly located in Wyoming, small parts also come under Montana and Idaho. In 1978, the park had been given the status of a World Heritage Site. It stretches across more than two million acres of pristine landscape spanning forests, geysers, alpine lakes and magnificent peaks. The park is home to a number of wild animals including wolves, grizzly bears, elks and bisons to name a few. If you are an adventure buff, you can indulge in various sporting activities such as boating, biking, skiing, fishing and much more here.

The Irresistible Charms of East London

It is said that anyone with a vivid imagination should definitely visit South Africa. Its history, landscapes, culture seem to all but speak to the visitor.


East London is a city in the south eastern coast of Eastern Cape province in South Africa. The beautiful city lies on the Indian Ocean coast, between the two rivers namely, Buffalo River and the Nahoon River. We have listed down the top attractions of this ‘wild’ province.


The strip of this dramatic coastline is an untamed wilderness offering incredible views of jagged cliffs, sheltered bays, beautiful beaches and rolling hills and valleys. This place can be enjoyed on horseback and is sheer bliss for hikers. Water activities like diving and snorkeling are the highlights of the destination and offer a spectacular under water experience.


Addo Elephant National park is rated as the third largest reserve in South Africa for its incredibly wide diversity of wildlife and vegetation. It’s home to buffalos, leopards, lions, rhinos, white sharks, southern white whales and is especially famed as a place where one can see gigantic elephants up close. The rarely spotted dung beetles are an unusual attraction here. The park is also known for its hiking trails. More adventurous visitors may want to explore the place on horseback.


Shamwari is a private game reserve which has been voted as the best conservation company for 10 consecutive years. For an outing with the family, there is perhaps no better destination for Safari than ‘Shamwari’. Special programs for kids are also available here. After admiring magnificent wildlife, you can pamper yourself with luxurious spas there and treat your eyes to the sunset at the beach behind the reserve.


Grahamstown National Arts Festival is South Africa’s largest and most vibrant cultural event. It beckons hordes of people. In fact, the population of Grahamstown almost doubles every year for eleven days in the month of June/July. Over 50,000 people flock here to experience South Africa’s celebrated cuisines, and music, theatre, crafts, art and sheer amusement.

Three Most Spectacular Beaches in Antigua

Antigua is famous worldwide for its magnificent beaches and as the local saying goes; there is one for every day of the year. There are a number of things to do for the adventure lovers, including snorkelling, kite-surfing and deep-sea diving.


Although everyone has his or her own favourites, have a look at our pick from the best among the secluded, dramatic, and romantic beaches.

Bird Island

If you’re looking for a unique holiday experience, the pristine beach of the Bird Island is a good option. The island, as the name suggests, is inhabited by a large number of tropical birds, such as frigate birds, brown pelicans and red-billed pelicans among others. If you like adventure sports, you can go for snorkelling in the turquoise waters around the island. Best way to get to the Bird Island is by local boat.

Half Moon Bay

Also billed as the jewel in the crown of the islands; Half Moon Bay is a collage of calm waters as well as spectacular waves at different times of the day. It is a family friendly place with various restaurants and beautiful vistas. Remember to pack a picnic basket before arriving as it is a great picnic spot. There is a place in the island, where a special type of mud is found. This mud is said to work wonders on the skin. Not many know the exact location, but those who do, come out plastered in the mud from head to toe.

Fort Bay

Fort Bay is located near the coast, down the road to Fort James. The beach is home to the famous Millers by the Sea Beach Bar. As the beach is really close to the dock, you will be able to see a thoroughfare of cruise ships. Millers is one of the most iconic spots for having delicious post-swim meals. The bar also provides beach equipment for snorkelling and other purposes. Before catching your return flight, you must visit this family friendly beach near Fort James. Play a volleyball match with other holidaymakers on the beach or take a long stroll along the coastline.

Top 3 Beaches in South Goa, India

Goa, being one of the most popular tourist destinations in India, entertains hundreds of thousands of tourists from all around the world who book tickets to this beach destination.


Here you can enjoy at various lovely beaches, party to your heart’s content, indulge in water-sporting activities, visit historical attractions, explore jungles, and do a lot more. Also you can choose to stay either in North or South Goa; both are unique in their own ways. Have a look at three of the top beaches in South Goa.


One of the most popular beaches located in South Goa is the Palolem Beach. The palm trees and hillocks that surround the crescent-shaped beach not only make for a stunning view of the sea, but also act as a natural bay surrounded by tall headlands on both the sides. Due to its shape, the whole beach is visible from any point. The beach is about 1.6 kilometres long and features a wide range of water-based sports and activities including snorkelling, fishing, parasailing, dolphin-watching and windsurfing among others. If you are an amateur swimmer, it is advisable to swim on the northern part of the beach as it is shallower. This beach was featured in the Hollywood film Bourne Supremacy as Jason Bourne’s (Matt Damon) residence.

Colva Beach

Colva is the largest, oldest and perhaps the most beautiful beach in South Goa. The sands of the beach are white and fringed with coconut palms. The beach extends to Cabo De Rama in the south. During the colonial period, Colva Beach was restricted to a privileged few, but today it is a public venue for fun, adventure water-sports, parties and nightlife. One of the most important highlights of Colva beach is the church of Our Lady of Mercy. This church is famous for the statue of ‘Menino Jesus’. The best time to visit the beach is from October to May when the season is favourable.

Cavelossim Beach

One of the most unique things about Cavelossim Beach is that it lies between the River Sal and Arabian Sea. It is another gem from the garland of beaches along the coast of Goa, with lush green vegetation, including casuarinas, palm trees and paddy fields. The beach attracts a large number of tourists who indulge in various recreational activities such as dolphin watching, sun bathing, sunset cruises and shopping, to name a few.  Before catching a flight back, remember to visit the colourful native bazaars that surround the beach. Cavelossim is also one of the best places to get pocket-friendly and comfortable accommodation for singles, couples as well as families.

Most Popular Annual Events in Buenos Aires, Argentina

From stupendous carnivals to foot-tapping dance festivals, Buenos Aires has a number of festivals and events running throughout the year.


If you are planning to book tickets for a holiday in the capital city, remember to check out the delightful events you can witness. Have a look at our picks from the top annual events in Buenos Aires.

Feast of the Epiphany (January)

The Feast of Epiphany, celebrated on the 6th of January, is a post-Christmas celebration which signifies the visit of the biblical “Three Wise Men” who are said to come with gifts for children and leave the gifts inside the left shoe of the kids who have been good, while the bad ones get chunks of coal. For adults, it is a day of feasting and celebrations, where they invite guests for food and drinks.

Carnaval Porteño (February)

Carnaval Porteño is an annual event marked by city parades with music, dance and lots of celebrations. The carnival is not as large as the Rio one, yet it is almost equally enjoyable. During the festival, more than 100 murgas (street bands) entertain bystanders across various neighbourhoods in small gated areas. The flourish of colours and the extravagant costumes worn by the participants, complete with drums and cymbals is quite a spectacle.

Dia de la Independencia (July)

On the 9th of July, Buenos Aires celebrates Dia de la Independencia, a national and public holiday for the Argentineans. On this day, in 1816, the nation attained independence from Spain. Commemorations take place in various places in the city and there are lots of festivals and parades. People visit the cafés in and around Avenida de Mayo for hot chocolate with churros.

Festival Y Mundial de Tango (August)

Festival Y Mundial de Tango is a celebration of the vibrant music and dance culture of Argentina. It is an international event, wherein thousands of people from various countries come to be a part of the festival. Films related to Tango, dance shows, live orchestras and various dance parties are held during this two week affair.  After the conclusion of the event, the world championship is held, which features various art forms, ranging from backstreet bordellos to ballroom performances.

International Buenos Aires Jazz Festival (November)

International Buenos Aires Jazz Festival is one of the most hip ‘n’ happening dance festivals held in Buenos Aires. From classic bebop to Nuevo tango and swing, the six day festival features various artists from across the globe, including top musicians from Argentina. Most of the events are held around La Boca and Centro Cultural Recoleta. You can also enrol for dance classes, workshops and music clinics during the festival.

Top 3 Places to Celebrate New Year’s Eve in New Zealand

If you are looking for a different holiday experience this New Year’s Eve, New Zealand is one of the places you may want to head to.


As New Zealand lies in the Southern Hemisphere, the country witnesses summer in December, which ensures a unique holiday experience. The different cities in the country have an array of activities to offer on New Year’s Eve. Have a look at the top 3 places in New Zealand to celebrate the New Year’s Eve.


Being the most populated city in the country, Auckland promises an energetic atmosphere on New Year’s Eve.


There are various bars and pubs, which host events and parties in the city, but one of the best experiences, would be to watch the brilliant fireworks display at Sky Tower. For the best views of the fireworks, mount Eden remains a popular spot. Amusingly, you can also watch the fireworks from the comfort of your hotel room, as there are webcam facilities for recording the amazing views.


As the capital city of New Zealand, Wellington has the reputation of celebrating New Year’s Eve in a family-friendly manner. The NYE Festival takes place in Frank Kitts Park Lagoon.


The event starts at 10 PM with various activities that are apt for a New Year’s celebration in the capital. These include free screenings of iconic local movies, music by various renowned artists, and the countdown soundtrack by Orchestra Wellington, followed by stunning fireworks.


Gisborne has recently gained popularity for its stupendous New Year celebrations. One of the main reasons for this transition is the success of the Rhythm & Vines festival through the years. It is one of the most sought after destinations for New Year celebrations for locals and visitors alike. Be prepared to sway to the tunes of some of the best and internationally acclaimed musicians, presenting different genres such as (indie) rock and electronic among others.

Christmas Markets in Brisbane, Australia

If you don’t like winters but love the festive spirit of Christmas complete with gifts, food, cakes, eggnog and lots of shopping, then you may want to spend your Christmas holidays in Brisbane.


While going out for Christmas shopping can be a hassle in the teeth-chattering cold of the Northern Hemisphere, in Brisbane you may well wear light cottons and summer shoes. While you are in the city, getting Christmas gifts from the traditional Christmas markets is a great idea. Here are a few popular Christmas markets that are held in Brisbane.

South Bank Christmas Markets

South Bank Christmas markets are probably among the most famous Christmas Markets to be held in Brisbane. These markets are known for a wide range of products made by local artisans. The ambience is brilliant and there are countless cheerful people all around. The stalls feature various gifts such as accessories, clothing for kids and adults, art-pieces, home wares, furniture and candles, to name a few.  Apart from hosting such markets, South Bank also organizes an exciting Christmas event. The highlight of this event is a special gifting lane packed with gift items for families and friends. Products include wooden toys, hand-made candles and jewellery. You can also ask them to hand-wrap the present in exchange for a charity donation.  After buying gifts for everyone, you can treat yourself at the South Bank Beer Garden to some refreshing beverages.

Brisbane Twilight Market

Brisbane Twilight Market is a popular affair in the city, with more than 80 stalls which specialize in locally produced and handmade products.


Enjoy the music by brilliant jazz bands of Queensland while shopping or having food at the on-site eateries and cafés.  Located on the King George Square, this market features an immense variety of gifts for both the old and the young. The local artists provide the best quality products and unique gifts for your loved ones. The whole atmosphere has an exciting and a festive feel to it and you will see many cheerful people all around the place.

The Finders Keepers

The Finders Keepers have been hosting the Christmas Market since 2009 and have taken the shopping experience to the next level. The market features more than 100 stalls selling various products such as jewellery, children’s clothing, handmade ceramics, rope baskets, terrariums and various other handicrafts. After all the shopping, you can visit the various food and beverage stalls to wash down your fatigue. Other highlights include bars, live music and café. You can also get delicious food from the various food trucks.

Top Attractions in and around Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

Nuwara Eliya, often billed as “Little England”, is said to be like a toy town. Located in the hill country of Sri Lanka, it is packed full of beautiful places. The town lies in the heart of tea plantations and has numerous attractions. In fact, you may well require more than a couple of days to explore it in entirety. So we recommend you to set at least two days aside for this scenic hill town. Have a look at our recommendations.

Victoria Park

Victoria Park is one of the most popular places in Nuwara Eliya. The park, located in the heart of the town has various garden areas, a playground for kids, and various varieties of plants.


Different species of birds also flock here. It is often said to be “one of the nicest, and best maintained, town parks in South Asia”. It is a good place to take a stroll, exercise, unwind or spend romantic time with your partner.  You will have to buy entry tickets for the park. The price of these tickets is different for domestic visitors, foreigners and kids. The park has free Wi-Fi hotspot services too.

Pedro Tea Estate

As mentioned previously, Nuwara Eliya is surrounded by tea plantations, where you can go on tours and also sample fabulous tea.


Pedro Tea Estate is one such popular place, where you can treat yourself to some of the finest quality of tea available in the region. The estate is easily accessible by rickshaws and public buses. You can go for a factory tour and see tea processing and packaging, apart from the regular tea estate tours. The equipment used in the factory is simple and it is fun to watch the tea-making process. It is a family-friendly place and there is an entry fee for adults.

Gregory Lake

About two kilometres from the town centre of Nuwela Eliya, lies the beautiful Gregory Lake. It is probably one of the most picturesque sunset points in the area and the highlights include, long walkways, motorboats, paddle boats and a beautiful houseboat.


There are several rides for the kids, while different food stalls dish out appetising food.  It is a beautiful and serene place to spend long leisurely moments with your partner and family. We would recommend you to visit before sunset in order to catch the mesmerising sunset. There are entry tickets for adults, while kids can enter for free. Boat rides cost LKR 200 for adults and a hundred for kids.

Toronto Christmas Market – Experience Holiday Fun at this Popular Christmas Market in Canada

Once again Toronto is all set to host Toronto Christmas Market, an annual holiday street market. With colourful musical performances, beer gardens and an array of family friendly stalls, this street market reflects the joyous celebratory mood of Christmas.


In 2015, the Distillery Historic District will host this holiday street market from 20th November to 20th December. On Mondays, the market will remain closed but on other days, you have a lot to enjoy and experience. Let’s check out a few highlights of this lively annual event.

White Spruce Christmas Tree and Magical Lighting

One of the most prominent draws of this street market is the massive Christmas Tree. This 45-foot high tree is donated by Forests Ontario & Ontario Wood.


Besides this tree, the market also allures visitors with its magical lighting. The streets and squares of the historic district are lit up with colourful lights and while walking around, you can listen to a variety of festive sounds and taste scrummy dishes at various food counters.

Beer Gardens

Toronto Christmas Market features numerous Hospitality Lounges where you can sit back, relax and enjoy authentic Christmas Market beverages. A few popular lounges here include Mill Street Beer Garden, Holiday Spirits Square presented by William Grant & Sons, and Pure Spirits Gluehwein Terrace. At these beer gardens, you can choose from a range of traditional beers and wines. Glühwein is perhaps the most popular beverage that you can enjoy at this Christmas market. This wine is available at almost every hospitality lounge.


Every moment at this annual street market is packed with entertainment. You can enjoy live music and dance performances. Each day features themed entertainment. You can enjoy bluegrass music on Traditional Tuesdays, and world and folk musicians will rock the stage on World Wednesdays. Choirs, carollers, ensembles and co-presentations with SING! Festival are major highlights of A capella Thursdays. Fridays offer spectacular performances for Jazz lovers. If you want to check out the upcoming music talent, buy tickets for Rising-Star Saturdays. Instrumental bands and dance groups will perform on Ensemble Sundays.

Entry Requirements

Toronto Christmas Market is open for people of all ages and kids (0-2 years) are entitled to free entry. You don’t need to buy tickets to visit this street market on Tuesdays and Fridays. Tickets are available online and if you want to buy same day tickets at the venue, visit Toronto Christmas Market Ticket Sales Tent located on Trinity Street.

Top Cities to Enjoy New Year Celebrations in South America

If you want to celebrate the New Year abroad, one of the best destinations would be South America.


Whether you’re a party animal or looking for a quiet time to reflect, take a look at our pick of three cities that are sure to make your New Year memorable for life.

The World’s Largest New Year’s Party at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

If you’re a party animal, attending the largest New Year’s Eve party is probably the best way you can celebrate the onset of the New Year.


Rio de Janeiro is regarded as one of the largest and the most popular New Year holiday destinations in the world. The party is attended by about two million people, including locals as well as overseas visitors.  World renowned musicians book flights from different parts of the world to perform at the events here throughout the night. If you love Samba, this is the best place to flaunt your moves, while you’re waiting for midnight. Remember to book your hotels and tickets in advance as Rio is a highly popular destination.

A Magical New Year in Machu Picchu, Peru

If you are not much of a music buff or party person, but still want to celebrate a memorable New Year, Machu Picchu, in Peru would be a good option for you. In fact, it doesn’t matter if you like parties or not, because there is something or the other for people of all preferences. If you want to celebrate New Year partying, you may want to stay in Cusco, the capital of the Inca Empire. Here you can celebrate the New Year with the locals who come out during New Year and celebrate it as a community. Alternatively, you can also choose a laidback way to celebrate the evening by staying at the surreal Sacred Valley. It has a breathtaking geographical setting in the Andes and offers you beautiful sweeping views of the horizon. The history and architecture of the place date back to the Incas.

A Cultural New Year Experience in Valparaiso, Chile

If you want to avoid the extreme crowds in Rio, you can always book tickets for the beautiful city of Valparaiso. Also known as Chile’s cultural capital, Valparaiso is a historically significant town with various stories associated to it. The city has been an important port since the 1800s and was a stopover for vessels coming in from the Atlantic and going to the Pacific Ocean. The best thing about celebrating New Year in Valparaiso is that the festival goes on for three days and visitors get to witness a magnificent fireworks display; the biggest fireworks affair in the whole of Latin America. To strengthen the magical experience, all the city lights are turned off before midnight. Various performers and musicians arrive at the city to present their shows at the Plaza Sotomayer.