Monthly Archives: November 2016

Some Exciting Things to Do in Antigua

antigua

Antigua, a bustling island in the West Indies, is a hotspot for swimming, surfing, sun-bathing, and what not! The destination is the perfect place to indulge in loads of fun. Here’s a bunch of activities and experiences to try out in Antigua.

Visit the Past at English Harbour

Known for Nelson’s Dockyard – a former British Navy base, English Harbour presents restored 18th and 19th century buildings and other historical artefacts from the colonial period of the dockyard. The Royal Navy used English Harbour as a safe haven and strategic base in the 1600s. Ironically, today there are stylish bars, restaurants, shops, art galleries, and luxury hotels here.

Satiate Hunger Pangs at the Cover Restaurant (Blue Waters)

Cove Restaurant is said to be the best place to satiate your hunger pangs. It ‘combines Caribbean and French cuisine with flair.’ The flaming torches welcome the visitors. The spectacular entrance takes one to the candlelit hall. While enjoying the scrumptious meal, you will be blown away by the fabulous views of the Caribbean Sea. Advance booking of 48 hours is recommended.

Visit the Turner’s Beach

This powdery beach inspires people to participate in water-based activities such as reef trips, snorkelling, and jet skiing. For special occasions such as beachfront weddings, one may definitely consider this coastal area. Umbrellas are available on rent and there is an open air beach bar where you may enjoy drinks and food at leisure, while enjoying fine views.

Shop at St. John’s Saturday Morning Market

The capital of Antigua and Barbuda, St. John hosts the St. John’s Saturday Morning Market – a place where local vendors sell a wide range of products. You may buy souvenirs by way of spices and crafts at attractive rates. The market is best visited early morning, when it’s not too crowded. Lip-smacking meals are offered throughout the day.

Watch an Exciting Game of Local Cricket

Cricket is nearly an obsession in Antigua! Children play beach cricket games, whereas adults flaunt their skills at the recreational ground. Travellers can connect with the locals here. Those who know how to play this sport can join the locals. In Antigua, one should participate in each and everything.

Explore the Exquisite Gems of Oman

Oman is one of those exotic places, which still remains largely unexplored by most. Visiting the destination gives you some rare insights into the myriad facets of the Arab world – its landscapes, its culture, its cuisine, and its architecture.

oman

Refreshingly, there is no excessive display of wealth. Oman is blessed with natural beauty, which finds reflection through its rugged mountains, vast deserts, and a virginal coastline. A trip to the country will also let you experience its intriguing traditional culture, delicious cuisine, the warm hospitality of its simple people, and a lot more. Listed below are some of the beautiful experiences which travellers should not miss during a visit to this country.

Soak in the Scenic Views of Jabal Shams (Sun Mountain)

Get amazed by the rugged beauty of Jabal Shams, also known as the Sun Mountain, which is considered to be the tallest peak in the Arabian Peninsula. Jabal Shams reaches the heights of 3,004 metres above sea level and boasts of several slopes and summits. A popular tourist attraction in the Sun Mountain is a deep chasm known as the ‘An Nakhr Balcony’ – a deep ravine in the centre of the rocks. The views of this ravine from the top are very scenic. The surrounding region has many good guest houses.

Explore the Turtle Reserve

Travellers must visit the Turtle Reserve at the Al Sharqiyah South Governorate to experience the scenic beauty of the beaches and to get up close to these meek creatures. The area ranging from Ras Al Hadd to Masirah Island is protected as a turtle reserve, where the rare green turtles can also be found. Explore the Ras Al Jins, a turtle sanctuary where turtle eggs are protected. Travellers can enjoy spotting the turtles in their natural habitat and lucky visitors may even see a green turtle with eggs in its nest.

Bathe in the Alkasfah Spring

A new and unique experience in a desert region, travellers must visit the AlKasfah Spring located at Wilayat al-Rustaq in Al Batinah South Governorate, Oman. The Alkasfah Spring is a group of several natural hot water springs, with temperatures up to 45 degrees Celsius. The hot water from the Alkasfah Spring flows out through many streams and is used to irrigate orchards. These hot water pools are well-known for their sulphate therapeutic waters and swimming pools, ideal for bathing. The hot water pools are accessible to the public all round the year.

Enjoy a Boat Ride at Bandar Khayran Reserve

Another must-experience activity in Oman is going on an enjoyable boat ride across the Bandar Khayran Reserve. The reserve is located in the centre of Muscat and can be reached by a boat ride of around 30-40 minutes from the Bandar Al Rawdha Marina. Enjoy the views of playful dolphins swimming along the boats. The boat ride will also offer travellers scenic views of rugged mountains with small white houses overlooking the sea. After reaching the Bandar Al Khayran, explore its rich underwater life of rich coral reefs, exotic fish, and other diverse sea creatures. The place is a paradise for divers and has over 22 diving locations.

Get Set to Celebrate Guy Fawkes Night in Style

The Guy Fawkes Night, also known as the Bonfire Night or Fireworks Night, is just round the corner. It is a traditional British celebratory bonfire held on 5th November every year to mark the failed Gunpowder plot of 1605 in the UK.

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The day is observed with bonfires, burning of effigies, and spectacular fireworks shows across the country. The bonfire is marked by celebratory feastings, family entertainment shows and activities, and several fun fairs.

Origins

The Guy Fawkes Night celebrates the failed attempt to blow up the UK Parliament by a gang of men led by a man named Guy Fawkes. After the government made public the foiled attempt, people rejoiced and lit bonfires as their king had been saved. With the passage of years, the festivities became all the more elaborate.

Present Day Celebrations

On the administrative front, even today it is customary for the Yeoman of the Guard to search the cellars in the Houses of Parliament. People observe the day by lighting a bonfire, burning effigies of Guy Fawkes in these bonfires, and organising spectacular displays of fireworks.
Some of the places where fireworks displays will be held this year on 5th November in London are mentioned below.

Southwark Fireworks Display

Visit the Southwark Fireworks Display to revel in the festivities this year. The event, which can be attended for free, is one of the biggest fireworks displays across London. So, enjoy the spectacular fireworks on the south bank of the River Thames. There will be lots of good food and a number of entertaining events and shows will be held as well.

Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival

The Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival is considered to be one of the best Bonfire Night events in London. Enjoy amazing panoramic views of London from this spot and engage in fun-filled family activities such as German beer festival, ice skating, and fun fairs.

Blackheath Fireworks

The Blackheath Fireworks display will not only include stunning fireworks in a huge outdoor space but it will also allow visitors to enjoy delicious seasonal treats. The public event is free for all and lets one enjoy memorable festivities with family and friends.

Celebratory Delicacies

Hearty feasting is a major part of the festivities and the highlight is a traditional cake called Parkin Cake. It’s a sticky cake is made with oatmeal, treacle, syrup, and ginger. So, this Bonfire Night, enjoy the festivities as you relish the delicious Parkin Cake with custard poached pears.

Enjoy a Fun Family Holiday in South Africa

How do you wish to spend your family holiday? Do you want to laze around on sunny beaches and make sand castles or do you wish for a thrilling family safari to spot exotic wildlife or does a gastronomic tour excite you? For all these reasons and more, visit the Rainbow Nation – South Africa.

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The country is blessed with a warm, sunny weather all through the year and boasts of an active outdoor lifestyle with picturesque beaches, delicious barbecues, upmarket shopping avenues and world-class accommodation options. Read on to know more about the top reasons to pack your bags and board flights for South Africa for your next family holiday.

Scenic Natural Beauty

South Africa is home to some of the most amazing and scenic sights in the world. From the Table Mountain to God’s Window, the country is teeming with famous and fabulous natural attractions. Spend some unique moments with your family exploring through its varied landscapes of mountains, beaches, forests and deserts.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

The diverse and huge country is home to several UNESCO designated World Heritage Sites, including the Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape, the Robben Island, the Cape Floral Region Protected Areas and the Drakensberg Park. Have a fun-filled time travelling across the vibrant nation with your family to explore the wonders of the World Heritage Sites here.

Wildlife

South Africa is home to a variety of plant and animal species. Go on a family safari and have an amazing time spotting exotic wildlife including The Big Five – Lion, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Leopard and Rhinoceros. You can choose to spend time together while whale watching at Hermanus or observing penguins and seals at Boulders Beach and Seal Island.

Outdoor Activities

South Africa, being a reputable travel destination, is known as the adventure capital of the world. Different sites across the country offer completely safe and exciting adventure opportunities, which can include mountain hiking, shark cage-diving and zip-sliding.

High Quality Tourist Facilities

Being a popular tourist destination, the country boasts of quality infrastructure and facilities for tourists. The accommodation options in the country are all fantastic, with some of the world’s best properties found in large cities such as Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. Also, there are several terrific restaurants, serving great food and promising exceptional ambience.

Luxury Train Trips

South Africa’s luxurious Blue Train offers one of the most renowned luxury train experiences in the world. The Blue Train takes travellers on a 994-mile scenic journey from Cape Town to Pretoria in a little more than one full day. The train offers great meals, wine and cigars onboard.

Beaches

Relax with your entire family at the stunning beaches of the country. Stroll around or make sand castles at the pristine beaches of Plettenberg Bay and at the lively beaches of Cape Town. Spot the playful penguins at the Boulders Beach or explore the tropical coral reefs at Rocktail Bay.

Dubai for Beach Bums: Dubai’s Best Public Beaches

Dubai is better known for its awe-inspiring man-made attractions such as glittering malls, amazing theme parks, bustling souks, and Burj Khalifa; the tallest building in the world.

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However, the ‘City of Gold’ also boasts of numerous white sandy beaches that are perfect for picnics, playing games, and enjoying waters sports. Many of these amazing beaches are part of resorts and are accessible only to the resort guests. However, Dubai has some great public beaches that can be visited for free or for a small fee. Read on to know more about these public beaches.

Jumeirah Bach Residence (JBR)

The JBR Beach is a popular beach among locals and tourists alike. The JBR beach is located beside the Jumeirah Beach Resort and is a free to use public beach, with clean facilities, showers, and beachfront restaurants. This beach, which is filled with people particularly on weekends, is the site of many popular events.

Kitesurfing Beach

Don’t forget to visit the Kitesurfing Beach in Dubai to see numerous kite surfers in action. This sporty beach is also a popular spot for soccer, volleyball, and kayaking. Also, known as the Woollongong Beach as it is close to the University of Wollongong, the beach is perfect for long walks. However, it has no facilities; so bring your own stuff.

Mamzer Beach Park

The Mamzer or Mamzar Beach Park is a huge picturesque beach. The Mamzer Park has five beaches in coves along the coastline of the park. These beaches have sheltered areas with public utilities such as changing rooms and showers. Sun loungers and umbrellas are available on rent. The area around the beach also has stores and cafes.

4×4 Beach

The 4X4 Beach is another popular public beach. It is located close to the Jumeirah Beach Park and has earned this quirky name because it is a popular spot for drivers to stop and enjoy stunning ocean and bay views.

Jumeirah Open Beach

Visit the Jumeirah Open Beach, which was earlier popular as the Russian Beach. This huge public beach is a great place to enjoy a quick swim or even bathe for hours! The beach is large and includes a 1.8km running track. Facilities include showers, public toilets, and round-the-clock shops.

Bu Qtair Beach

Explore this small and charming peninsular beach known as the Bu Qtair Beach. The beach is popular and has been named after a famous fresh seafood eating joint, the Bu Qtair. You can easily spend an entire day here.