Fun Things To Do In Central Park

 

 

Central Park is an 843-acre NYC gem offering an oasis of nature’s delights in the midst of a chaotic urban sprawl. Fortunately, this large patch of green provides visitors respite amid woodlands, meadows, lakes, wildlife and monuments.  With 21 playgrounds, rolling hills and tranquil spaces co-existing together, a day in this park promises to be unforgettable.  As a result, the whole family can enjoy a broad range of fun activities.

Here is a list of fun things to do in Central Park:

Bird Watching

First, explore 37-acres of winding trails, streams, rocks and hills known as the Ramble.  It’s a densely wooded, world-famous birding spot that covers from 72nd St. to 79th St.  Furthermore, Central Park is a well known migratory route and one of the best birding spots in the U.S.  It attracts birders from all over the world.  Some 250 species can be spotted here in any year.  Simply incredible.

 People Watch in Sheep Meadow

Second, Sheep Meadow is perhaps one of the best people-watching spots in Manhattan. This 15-acre field of lush green grass north of 65th St. along the southern edge of the park.  We suggest that you grab a blanket and some snacks.  Furthermore we suggest that you mingle with the ocean of sunbathers, picnickers, and kite-fliers for a relaxing fun-filled day.  In addition to the fun around you, you may hear a performer strumming a guitar or join in a friendly game of Frisbee.

Ice Skating at Wollman Rink

If you happen to be in NYC during winter, this summertime amusement park morphs into an icy playground.  And  ice skaters of all ages and skill levels join for arctic fun.  Another thing you can do is catch an exciting game of hockey,  or indulge in some night skating, with a romantic backdrop of NYC skyscrapers.

Bike through scenic landscape

Next, Central Park bike tours are perhaps the most leisurely way to explore this iconic green oasis. Take a guided bike tour, ride beneath a canopy of trees and appreciate nature at its finest.  Stop at famous locations and points of interest, grab hundreds of fantastic photo ops, and learn fun facts from your guide while pedaling through the park.

Stroll through the Conservatory Garden

Take in the beauty while strolling the through this six-acre paradise, the Conservatory Garden.  You can find spectacular annual displays of seasonal flowers.  Enter the park at 5th Ave between 104th and 105th Streets.  You will be entranced by water fountains and famous sculptures.  Not only it will entrance you, it will be bursting with colors you’ll want to capture in print.

Catch and release fish in the Harlem Meer and The Discovery Center

Enjoy this favorite free community pastime at the Harlem Meer.  Borrow a fishing rod and eco-friendly bait from the Charles A. Dana Discovery Center, and let the fun begin.  You will find a flourishing pond with a variety of fish like carp, largemouth bass, and bluegill sunfish.  Additionally, you will find turtles, waterfowl, and birds.  Once you’re done just return your rods.  Be sure to learn about the many seasonal exhibits, musical performances, holiday celebrations and free education at the Discovery Center.

Go for a hike in the North Woods

Did you know that nearly one million visitors a year hike through these 40-acre woodlands?  The setting will make you feel like you’re in the Adirondacks.  In addition to the woodlands, you can enjoy the serenity of The Pool.  It is lined with cypress, weeping willows, and red maples, an idyllic setting for photographs.  This popular destination is the perfect place for spotting wildlife by streams.  Furthermore, you may find wildlife feasting on one of three cascades along rustic trails that will inspire and calm your senses.

Also, you may also like New York City Travel and Sites From Your Favorite TV Shows.  Without doubt, New York City should be on everyone’s list of place.  Oh yes, be sure to have fun!We need to conclude this post, but we hope you found our Things to Do in Central Park tips helpful.

About the author:  Kabir Khan is a contributor for travel and sight seeing in New York City.  Be sure to check out Central Park Bike Rental .  Great way to get exercise and to check out Central Park.

 

New York City Travel and Sites From Your Favorite TV Shows

 

New York City Travel

 

New York City has been the backdrop for many popular TV shows and movies.  In fact, you may have grown-up watching some shows featuring NYC sites and locations.  So, when in the Big Apple be sure to visit those very places in person and relive those shows all over again!

Here is a list of NYC sites you may have seen in some of your favorite TV shows:

HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER

Five character of the main characters You must have seen how 5 of the main characters of this popular TV show spent so much of their spare time at a bar. And that bar was real. The real NYC pub or bar – MacLaren’s – is at 240 W. 55th Street.  Check out the menu items; some have been renamed after scenes from the show.

GOSSIP GIRL

The popular TV series “Gossip Girl” used many real-life NYC sites, which you can visit to feel the magic once again. Do you recall how the characters in the series, including Serena, Blair and friends had lunch on the steps of the iconic Metropolitan Museum of Art?  To see where Serena lived with her family, visit the Palace Hotel.  And to see Chuck Bass’ home, you can visit the Empire Hotel.

Cafe Grumpy’s

Remember Café Grumpy’s from the hit HBO show, Girls? This coffee spot is for real with locations throughout NYC.  The locations include Greenpoint, Chelsea and the Lower East Side.  You can see people hang out, read and get their morning cup of caffeine at this popular coffee shop in the city.

Mad Men

Numerous TV shows have been shot at the Oyster Bar.  The Oyster Bar seafood restaurant has been located on the lower level of the Grand Central Terminal since 1931.  It has been quite popular among locals as well as visitors. If you were a fan of the TV series, “Mad Men”, you must have seen how Don Draper sabotaged his boss at the bar.

Sex and the City

When the Magnolia Bakery made its way in the TV series, Sex and the City, its popularity has reached a new level. The bakery in Greenwich Village still sells delicious cupcakes for visitors. Did you notice how Carrie and Miranda spend a lot of time here sitting and chatting about many things?

Seinfeld

In the popular sitcom, “Seinfeld,” you must have seen Monk’s Café which served as a hangout spot for Elaine, Jerry, Kramer and George. The café was actually fictional using the real exterior of Tom’s Restaurant in the Upper West Side.  Locals have favored this restaurant since 1940.  Visit and recreate the magic of this popular TV show all over again.

We hope you enjoy our New York City travel tips.  Finally, use the hop-on hop-off New York  for sight seeing and tours.

Stress Free Tropical Family Vacations

 

tropical family vacations

 

Going on vacation when you have kids can be difficult. There’s so much to think about.  For example, what to do with your time and how to keep everybody happy and safe.  It can be done, and we’re going to give you a few tropical family getaways.

Borneo Family Tour

 

tropical family vacations

Wikipedia

Borneo is one of the world’s largest islands and one of the most interesting. There’s a huge range of activities and landscapes to enjoy in this tropical paradise. Perhaps the most enchanting for both parents and kids is the island’s orangutans. The best place to find orangutans is at the Sepilok Sanctuary.  The apes are kept on display.  However, if you head out on a bush tour, there’s a small chance you’ll see these enchanting creatures in the wild.

Borneo is home to many different tribal groups too. You can visit these groups while staying in one of the island’s traditional long houses. The rainforest here hosts many interesting creatures, including pygmy elephants and wild gibbons.  Borneo is open to visitors all year, but the best time to take a visit is between March and October.

 

The Texas Coast

 

Galveston Texas vacation

Wikipedia

If you’re looking for something a little closer to home consider the Texas coast, around Galveston.  Every summer, thousands of families descend on the area looking for warm waters and tropical skies. The main attraction on the Texas Gulf Coast is Galveston island. As this guide to Galveston Island points out, there’s plenty for families to do here. You can take a trip on the Port Bolivar Ferry where there’s a chance of seeing dolphins and do other sightseeing. You can also see some of the island’s many tree sculptures. If you’re into your history, your can pay a visit to the 1877 Tall Ship Elissa, preserved as a monument to the region’s maritime history.

 

Burma

 

tropic vacations

  Wikimedia Commons

Burma has been through political strife over the last few decades.  Recently they have begun to open its doors to the outside world.  As a result, you might not think that it’s an ideal location to take children.  Burma needs to attract tourists if it is to become a wealthy country.

Right now, there’s a wealth of activities being offered that children will love. How about spending some time in the Burmese jungle learning to ride an elephant?  Or sailing to Inle Lake on your very own long tail boat?

There’s plenty of opportunities for children to get involved with the local culture. There are tours, for instance, where you can learn about the lives of traditional fishermen. You can also spend a night in a local village, living as the locals do and experiencing their culture first hand.

The Burmese people are very welcoming and have a very positive attitude to Westerners. More often than not, they learn as much from you as you do from them. When it comes to children, nothing is too much trouble.

How to Save on Vacations: We Have 20 Tips

 

money saving tips on vacatins

 

 

 

 

While travel is not a household’s biggest expense, family vacations are expenditures that many families care. We have great tips to show you how to save on vacations. Getaways can also be expensive.  Particularly when traveling with kids. Even so, here are 20 ways to push through your vacations and save at the same time.

1. Be Flexile on Flights 

Save big money on travel by flying during less popular times, such as early in the morning, late at night, or midweek. When booking online, use the flexible-travel-date feature that lets you compare fares for days on either side of your target date.

2. Book early

Book trips between 27 to 114 days in advance saves a significant amount of money. The prices of airfares, according to CheapAir.com, fluctuate until about 14 days out, when they reach their maximum.

3. Carry-ons

Avoid paying huge checked-bag charges by making sure that several of your suitcase adheres to the standard carry-on size (9 inches x 14 inches x 22 inches). You can carry these bags on the plane and place them in the overhead bins.  Pack several large or a large suitcase for family clothing and toiletries.  Be sure to pack light.   

4. Hotel rooms

Call potential hotel rooms in your vacation destination and ask about discounted rooms.  AAA rates and any other specials can help cut cost. Do this before booking your hotel room.  Reservations can be made on-line.  Be sure to get a confirmation number and ensure your discount has been applied.

5. Vacation homes/condo

Consider booking a vacation home or condo rather than at a hotel. It will usually cost less and is more comfortable for the kids.  They also full or partial kitchens which can be used to cook some of the meals or house snacks.  

6. All-inclusive resort

When traveling outside the U.S., consider an all-inclusive resort, which includes meals, drinks, and entertainment. All-inclusive resorts offer maximum value while making budgeting for vacation easier.

7. Special promotions

Find online promotions related to your vacation. Attraction tickets are often less expensive when bought online, especially during certain days of the week.  If you don’t know where to start online, consider hiring a travel agent.  These agents work on commission and won’t charge you.

8. Coupons

Search the Internet for coupons you can use once you reach your destination. There are many sites that will show you how to save on vacations. Family deals are often offered when purchasing multiple tickets. Special Internet offers are also available when buying tickets online.

9. Deals

Find discounts and deals for your destination by using Groupon or Living Social. Also, check your destination’s local newspaper for specials and discount coupons. You can find special deals on How to Save on Vacations in local newspapers or the hotel you will be staying in. 

10. Transportation

Check to see if your hotel or resort offers shuttle service. You can eliminate car rental fees.  Use taxis or Uber, which can take you to outlying locations at a cost lower than a rental car.

11. Car rental

If you need to rent a car, go with a local car rental company instead of renting one at an airport location. Local car rentals help you to avoid high airport rates and fees.  Check to see if  they offer service to and from the off-site location. 

12. Car seats for kids

If you are using a rental car you may need a car seat.  Renting a car seat can set you back more than $5 a day. Save on car seat fees by bringing your own car seat for your kid. 

13. Supplies

If you are driving, pack plenty of drinking water, bread, cold cuts, healthy snacks and other supplies. This helps avoid stopping and buying on impulse. Once you reach your destination, shop at the local grocery store for supplies. 

14. Vacation essentials

Bring basic vacation items such as sunscreen and water bottles. Bringing your own essentials is far cheaper than buying them in hotels and amusement parks.

15. Packed lunches

If possible and when you can, prepare bag lunches each day for adults and for kids,  This can help avoid spending more, particularly on fast food chains.

16. Travel needs

Buy water, snacks and everything you need for a trip at a grocery store instead of purchasing them at the hotel, which usually sell overcharged items.

17. Eating locally

Eating at local restaurants is not only less expensive but also makes the trip more of an adventure. Ask for suggestions from your hotel’s front desk or from your vacation home’s contact.

18. Rewards points

When booking your airfare, hotels, or rental car, use points you have earned from credit card purchases or loyalty programs. Also, use credit cards that offer extra bonus points when used at supermarkets.

19. Apps

Download money-saving apps that you can use for gas, sites along a route, local diners, and accommodations. Save them in your phone during the planning stages of your trip.

20. Off season

Consider traveling during off-peak times. It will be cheaper and is less crowded than traveling during popular dates. Many vacation destinations offer reduced rates during the off season.

We hope that you find our tips on How to Save on Vacations beneficial.  You may not be able to or need to implement them all, so just implement the ones that will save you the most.

About the Author:

Stephanie is a freelance writer who resides in Gilbert, Arizona.  She is co-owner of  How Much Is itAside from spending time with her family, she also enjoys hiking, biking and scrapbooking

13 Tips for Parents Traveling With Children

 

travel tips for parents

 

Any parent knows that traveling with young children isn’t the easiest of the things. At times, it can be outright challenging, especially if you’re a single parent. But most parents are known to be resourceful which is why we know they would love any tip or suggestion that would make traveling with children easier and much more fun!

Here, is a set of tips and tricks for all parents who wish to make the most of globe-trotting with their children!

 

 Don’t Forget the Medicine at Home

This is very important and something a lot of parents overlook. Do not forget the medicine whatever you do! Bring medicine for pain, upset tummies, fevers, allergies, and any prescription medicines.

 

Book Transportation in Advance

When leaving on vacation with your child, it is important to think ahead. Transportation is so important.  Arrange a limo service from your home to the door of the airport terminal and back home.  This eliminates parking the car and getting the children from the parking lot to the terminal. Also, don’t just rely on the fact that you will find a taxi when you get off the airplane!  Call the hotel to inquire about shuttles.  If you need to rent a car, make a reservation in advance.  Make sure the rental company has car seats and/or boosters if you’re not bringing yours.  Most importantly, most airlines will ship your car seats for free.  However, for a small weekly fee it may be more convenient to just rent.

 

Board Early

We know it can be hard to leave the house early when going on vacation with a small child.  However, you must give yourself sufficient time to arrive at the airport early.  This will allow time to allow the children to relax.  Additionally, most airlines will allow parents with children to board early. Boarding early will also release tension and stress. 

 

Bring Toys and Electronics 

You will need to bring toys and electronics to occupy the children.  These are great while you’re waiting to board the plane, on the plane and occupying them at the hotel or resort.  You will need to bring chargers for the electronics.  As far as the toys, travel light. 

 

Don’t Be Afraid of Your Stroller

Some parents avoid bringing the stroller because it’s too heavy or too hard to carry around on vacations. However, we advise against that. A stroller can be a huge help, especially on vacations and in airports, when you have to do a lot of walking. You also need to know that strollers don’t count as luggage.  So, they will ship for free. 

 

Do a Little Training Before You Leave

If your child is old enough to remember tasks, then it is wise to do a little training before you leave on your vacation. Explain to them what to expect and what is expected from them. Make it short, because we all know kids aren’t too good at paying attention for long periods of time.

 

Invest in a Child Tracker

The thought that you might lose your child is enough to make any parent break out in a cold sweat.  Get a child tracker. Research what other parents have used and recommended.  Most can be worn as a bracelet or attached to clothes. Pick the one you think is best for your kid!

 

Do Your Check In Online

Online check in has improved airports so much!  You can avoid lines by simply checking in online.  Procedures vary from airline to airline, so be sure to check your Carrier’s procedures.  Download any apps and make sure they are working properly before you head to the airport.  On-line check in allows you to breeze through the airport in no time.

 

Flight Attendants are Your Friends

Flight attendants are there to help you and you! As a parent traveling with a small child, you should take advantage of  as much as you can. We’re not saying that you should pester them with non-stop requests, but you shouldn’t feel guilty when you need something.  They’d be more than happy to help!

 

Research, Research, Research

Researching a hotel is one of the best things a traveler can do before booking a vacation. You need to know if a hotel offers babysitting and activities.  Also, ask if they have a crib, playpen or laundry service. Everything you need to have a great vacation!  Websites such as Hotels or TripAdvisor are awesome for finding out this type of information.

 

Noise Cancelling Headphones

A pair of good noise cancelling headphones can really make a difference when traveling with a young child. You can use them when your child is napping on the plane or train.  Make sure that you choose a pair that fits. 

 

Early to Bed, Early to Rise

When on vacation with a small child, it is very important that they go to bed early.  Making sure they are rested for the next day’s activities is important. Besides, if they go to bed early you get a little time to yourself. Unwinding, relaxing, and planning out the schedule for the next day.

 

Stay As Close the Attractions as Possible

When booking a hotel, do your best to choose a hotel that is as close as possible to the attractions. These hotels do tend to be pricier.  Also, you save a lot of time and you can be in and out of things such as museums, parks, and other sites that you can walk to. 

 

 


About the Author

Cristina Costea

Cristina is the Community Manager of BookSinglesHolidays.com, a themed travel website offering a vast collection of singles vacations & solo holidays. She is also a passionate traveler, cat aficionado and novice writer.

           

Pre and Post Vacation Cleaning Tips

tips for a clean house after vacation

 

Taking a vacation once a year is very relaxing. It helps you unwind and take a break from your busy schedule. By the time you resume your official duties, you feel fresh and energized. However, if not planned well, the last days of your vacation can be stressful as you try to run errands and do cleaning chores. Here are useful tips to help you manage the situation with minimal effort.

  1. Plan for your return even before you go on your vacation

Take care of some of the monthly routines before you leave. Pay any outstanding bills. If there are any utility bills that may fall due when you are away or soon after the vacations, contact your service provider and pay in advance. This will eliminate any anxiety due to late payments when you come home. It will also free time to do other things once you are back.

  1. Clean your house before you leave for your vacation

You do not want to be welcomed by a foul smell of dirty dishes or stinky trash.  Wash all dishes and put them away.  Empty the trash cans and keep them clean.  Throw out any food in the refrigerator that will expire while you’re on vacation.

  1. Tend to your lawn

You do not want to find overgrown grass when your return.  Mow the lawn and trim it before you leave.  You can return from vacation with a feeling that you don’t have to immediately attend to the lawn.

  1. Turn all the water taps off before leaving

Make sure all taps in the house are turned off. Especially, during winter when taps are susceptible to freezing. Also, make sure there are no running toilets or water leaks.  This will ensure that water does not spill and destroy your household items while you are away. Things can get messy and cause you unimaginable loss if your valuables get soaked in water.

Post-Vacation Cleaning Tips

You can travel peacefully knowing that you will have lesser issues to attend to when you return home. After enjoying your vacation, plan to travel home several days before you return to the office.  Always give yourself time to rest and get over jet lag.  It is unwise to return to work immediately after your vacation.  Especially if you have traveled a long distance.

Once you get home, unpack and relax. Sort the laundry and do a load when you can without pressure.  If you have pick up and delivery service for your dry cleaning, call your service provider.  If they do not pick and drop services, plan when you will take the laundry to them. Treat yourself to maid services to assist with the cleaning if you can afford it. This will allow more time to rest.

Use your extra time to catch up with your family and friends. If you bought gifts, visit and share the items. Tell them your stories about your vacation and allow yourself to enjoy the memories. Sharing your memories will  lift your spirit and leave you happy and emotionally strong.  Be sure to attend to any matters that could require your time before you return to work.

I hope these pre and post vacation cleaning tips will help you the next time you decide to head out for a little rest and relaxation.  What pre and post vacation cleaning tips do you have to share?

About the Author:  Beverly Jenkins is proud of her staff at The Tidy Maids house cleaning service in Raleigh, NC. She has 24 years of experience in house cleaning, customer service, and business operations. She knows all the tips and tricks and do-it-yourself hacks when it comes to cleaning and her clients’ homes are the best proof for that.

 

Second Honeymoon Travel Tips

tips for a second honeymoon

 

How do you picture your perfect honeymoon?  Do you day dream of walking hand in hand on a tropical beach?  Maybe you’ve always wanted to visit Europe? Or perhaps you both want to pack your hiking books and head to Morocco?  To help couples worldwide, we at WeLoveHoneyMoons.com have put together 8 essential tips to help you plan a first or second honeymoon that you and your loved one will reminisce about for years!

Set a Budget

Every project needs a budget.  And your honeymoon planning isn’t an exception.  You can use a honeymoon-budget sheet to help you keep track. Start with a general budget and then drill down by categories.  If you prefer apps, use Expensify to keep track.

There’s no reason to cut corners on your honeymoon planning. After all, there are ways to honeymoon for less. This includes staying closer to home or choosing an affordable honeymoon package.  You can also save by booking your honeymoon online or by using your miles to get a cheaper flight. On top of that, you can try alternative means of transportation.
If you are renewing your wedding vows, be creative and set-up  a “Travel Fund”.  Set a travel date and start looking for more ways to save.  You can sell things or take on a few odd jobs to help raise the extra funds.
The best part is that you don’t have to lower the expectations. There are ways you can still have an amazing time and not spend a fortune or go in debt!

Look For the Most Suitable Destination

Easter Island or the Maldives sound like amazing destinations for a honeymoon on the island. However, do you know how far these places are from where you live?

Here is some information:
• it takes 17 hours to fly from New York to Easter Island
• it takes 21 hours to fly from Los Angeles to the Maldives
If you only have less than a week to spend on your honeymoon, you don’t want to be on a plane for almost two days.  A better idea is to look for destinations closer to home. If you live in the US, a honeymoon in the Caribbean can be a great choice.  Just remember, you don’t want to be on a tropical island during the hurricane season.
When picking a honeymoon location, think about the weather. While being stuck inside with your spouse can be exciting, pick a place where there are interesting seasonal things to do when you’re ready to get out and about.
If you choose an early summer month, Southern Europe is a good idea. You can decide to go on a honeymoon destination in Italy or maybe choose a honeymoon package in Greece. When budget is a concern, consider a less popular time to travel.  Europe in the summer is expensive, but not in the winter. The Caribbean is always cheapest in August -September.  Find a destination to match your budget rather than the other way around.

 

airbus-380-1449458-639x451

 

Choose a Good Airline

Flying business class for your honeymoon may sound good, but it can be a very expensive affair.  Save money either by using miles to upgrade or by simply booking economy and choosing seats with extra leg room.  Don’t be afraid to choose a low-cost airline. They have new fleet and are affordable.  Consider the leg room when choosing your seats.

Book In Advance

Book your honeymoon package six to eight months prior to the event! This window gives you a good chance to find affordable airfare and availability in the resort of your choice. If you want to stay at a certain resort or do something specialized, you may want to push that booking date back to a year if possible.  Sign up for fare alerts for the flights you are interested in.

Avoid making changes to the airfare or accommodation after you book. Changing the date on your plane ticket or accommodations could lead to paying penalties.   
 
Buy Travel Insurance
This is something that many people tend to overlook, but make sure you have travel insurance. Why? Because the right kind of insurance can protect you against a lot of things: from delayed flight to lost luggage or stolen goods.  And not to mention that it can save you a lot of grief during emergency situations or medical issues.   Lisa, blogger at Playa del Carmen agrees: “If any time should be stress-free, it is your honeymoon! It is worth the peace of mind.” Make sure the insurance you choose covers the activities you plan to enjoy (eg. scuba diving).

vacation packing tips for women

 

Travel Light

You really don’t need to pack half of your closet.  However, you don’t want to go to a fancy restaurant and not have anything for the occasion, either. Pack smart and think layers.  For a honeymoon on the beach, consider packing a lightweight dress and a pareo or cardigan for the evenings.  You may want to leave your high heels at home if you plan to visit Europe, with its old, cobblestone cities. Also, it’s worthwhile to consider packing that ultra-light waterproof jacket no matter where you’re headed.

The less stuff you carry with you, the more flexibility of movement you’ll be able to enjoy. Also, get a bag with wheels and don’t strain your body! Your energy should all go towards enjoying your trip with your loved one.  Roll your clothes to maximize the space in your carry on.

Share Your Travel Itinerary 

You should share your travel itinerary with at least a person you trust.  Things do happen and it might be useful and even life-saving if your loved ones know how to find you when necessary.

Relax and Enjoy Your Honeymoon

Make sure you plan for a balanced mix of activities and down time. That means allowing yourself to enjoy it. You’ll get back to the real world eventually – but you only get one honeymoon. Relish it.

About the Author – Cris Puscas is a contributing writer at WeLoveHoneymoons.com the best place to book memorable honeymoon travel packages. She is a hopeless romantic, equally passionate about discovering new places to explore and writing about them.

 

 

An England Family Vacation Is Worth The Flight

 

england family vacation tips

 

Getting to England with kids isn’t easy. It’s a pretty long flight, but if you want to see what the rest of the world raves about, it’s worth the trip. England is the home of the British Royal family, cute accents, and incredible landscapes. Most importantly, fun things to do with your children is limitless. If you want to take a vacation overseas, England is a great option for family fun.

Lots of people are curious about England. It’s a tiny country that packs a big punch when it comes to tourist attractions. The word ‘quaint’ is used a lot to describe English villages, houses, and local activities. After all, there are some pretty weird, wonderful, and whacky things that the English like to do! Rolling big cheeses down hills, Morris Dancing, and welly wanging. Those are just some of the village delights you might come across up and down the country.

English Yorkshire Pudding and Sunday Roast

Traditional English Sunday Roast With Yorkshire Pudding

 

When it comes to food, you may also find some little gems and weird dishes. Most towns and villages have their own local delicacy. This might include cakes, biscuits, or cheeses. Seaside towns might offer jellied eels and liquor pie. What about a beef stottie? And the Cornish pasty will definitely delight your entire family. Common favorites include the traditional English Breakfast and the Yorkshire pudding roast dinner.

American theme parks may be huge, but the British are definitely catching up. There are several to choose from all over England. Your kids will probably find their favorite TV characters at the themed parks. English favorites like Thomas the Tank Engine and Peppa Pig have their own parks!  You can buy your attraction tickets online in advance or at the entrance kiosk. Many parks have special events at certain times of the year. It’s worth doing your research to find out what they’re offering. Some include large wildlife parks. Additionally, those that are by the beach offer extra value when you’re out for the day.

However, if it’s the beach that brings you to England, you’ll not be disappointed. Some are world-renowned for the surf. Cornwall, in particular, brings professional surfers to the UK. There are plenty of surf schools and courses to choose from around the coast of England too. English kids like to bring a bucket and spade to the sand. Then they make elaborate sand castles with sea water moats. You can find sand sculptures at some of the popular tourist promenades.  If you’re feeling particularly relaxed, you can enjoy letting your kids bury you neck deep in the sand too.

England Tourist Attraction

 

Scotland and Wales might boast some of the most characterful castles. But England certainly has some remarkable ruins and inhabited castles for tourists to visit. Some have been turned into hotels. Others are free to visit and roam around the old ruins. Many have activities to help engage your kids in the history of the place. They can even experience what life was like hundreds of years ago. As well as castles, you can find estates, manors, abbeys, cathedrals, palaces and country houses that are all open to the public.

Other activities in London that you may want to consider is the world-renowned museums and art galleries. You can visit Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament at Westminster. This is also the home of Big Ben. St. Paul’s Cathedral is a remarkable building. Its design is particularly interesting for those who have a passion for acoustics. Children will love the Whispering Gallery.

British theater is also lots of fun for an afternoon out with the kids. You can find plenty of shows in the West End. If you visit England in the winter, you can experience the delights of the British Pantomime. These productions are very funny and will leave your kids squealing with delight. Well-known celebrities and TV stars often perform, so you might even recognize a few familiar faces.  Some performers engage the audience with a little audience participation. Adults love them just as much as the kids, and the humor will definitely appeal to all.

Making the trip to the UK may feel like a huge undertaking, but the pleasures of an English vacation will make up for it. There are so many great attractions. There are interesting things to see and do that will suit the entire family no matter what their ages or interests.  The lack of language barriers definitely helps if your kids like to explore on their own. If you’re looking for something a little extra special,  start planning your next year’s vacation to England.

5 Places To Travel for the Best Wildlife Experience

 

tips on where to find the best wild life experience

As the English writer Samuel Johnson said, “The use of traveling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they are.” So if you’ve always imagined how it looks like when a huge whale breaches the ocean’s surface or a lion hunts its prey, there’s no reason not to go and see it in person. Luckily, today there are many wildlife holidays you can opt for. And if a true wildlife experience is what you’re seeking, these five destinations might just be perfect for you.

Gansbaai (South Africa)

There’s hardly anything more extreme than diving into the shark-infested waters of South Africa. Gansbaai is a small fishing village in South Africa, famous for shark cage diving. Since the waters in this part of South Africa are full of sharks, tourists have a chance to get into a cage and see these marvelous creatures in person. The cages in which you go under the water are 100% shark-proof and there’s nothing to be afraid of.  Not to mention that this thrilling experience is something that’ll inspire you for a lifetime. The best time to visit Gansbaai is May to October since that’s when the success rate of shark sighting is highest and surpasses 95%.

Quebec (Canada)

Quebec is a city that sits on the St Lawrence River and it’s just a couple of hours away from the gulf of St Lawrence.  During certain times of the year, you can spot up to 13 different whale species   This includes humpback, blue, fin and killer whales among them. The best time to visit Quebec and go on a whale-watching trip is between mid-May and mid-October. There are many whale-watching operators that can take you to this beautiful place. There’s nothing to be afraid of as there are strict rules and ships aren’t allowed to get too close to the whales.

Corcovado (Costa Rica)

The national park of Corcovado is surely one of the most intense biological places on the planet. Cloud forests, old-growth wet forests, wild beaches and mangrove swamps you can come across in this national park are absolutely magnificent. Not only this, but Corcovado is full of tropical wildlife.  Tapirs, red macaws, quetzals and many different types of monkeys are just some of the animals you can spot in this amazing place. If you’re lucky, you might even get a chance to see a mountain lion or jaguar hunting for turtles on the beach. Since this is one of the wettest places on earth, make sure you visit it during the dry season (January to March).

Serengeti (Tanzania)

The great migration is one of the most dramatic scenes of African wildlife.  During the migration, more than 1.5 million wildebeests and 200,000 zebras set off on their 1,200-mile odyssey. What makes the great migration so special is that all of these animals are hunted by predators during their journey. Wildebeests and zebras follow the rain, which means you’ll have to plan your travels accordingly. The best time to visit Tanzania is  February or March.  This the time when animals congregate in Serengeti. By June and July, animals get to Masai Mara (Kenya) and that’s where you can witness magnificent Grumeti River crossings.

Yellowstone (USA)

The Lamar Valley of Yellowstone National Park is another area you’ll simply have to see if you’re into wildlife holidays. This place is famous for being a home to “big five” animals in the USA. The famous “big five” consists of the grizzly, bison, elk, wolf and cougar.  If you visit Yellowstone, chances are you’ll get to see all of them. If you get up early in the morning, you might even spot a bear or wolf looking for a pray.  Spotting a cougar may be more difficult but it’s possible if you’re persistent enough. If you want to record these incredible creatures by night, make sure you check out trail cameras before you visit Yellowstone.

All of these five places guarantee you a great time you’ll never be able to forget. So there’s no reason why you shouldn’t book your flight today.  Be a witness to some of the best wildlife experiences on earth.

Have you be on a wild life vacation before?  If so, where were you a what did you see.  If not, what spot would you like to visit.   You may also like 4 Top Family Activities in Bali.

Author  – Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls simply in love with interior design and DIY projects. In her free time she enjoys exercising and preparing healthy meals for her family.

 

4 Top Family Activities in Bali

 

Bali vacations, friendly vacations, vacations

 

Bringing kids along on an exotic vacation can be challenging.  Luckily, Bali isn’t just an exotic island.  I knew that it was the best choice for our first international family vacation because of its high standards for safety and adventure. My 14-year old soccer-loving son (Aaron) and his 11-year-old sister (Olivia) would agree, there are plenty of family-friendly activities in Bali. Fun is pretty much guaranteed if you try out some of the following:

Elephant Riding
Bali’s main asset lies in the island’s picturesque natural landscape. Gorgeous beaches are a plus too. We decided exploring nature by visiting one of the island’s top elephant safari parks. My kids love animals, so it wasn’t that hard of a choice.  We headed to a nearby rainforest where we took our sweet time admiring the endangered Sumatran elephants. The massive exhibit of a mammoth skeleton in the park’s museum is breathtaking. To top it all off, we had a tasty dinner at the nearby lakeside restaurant. Afterward, we returned home with several bags of souvenirs.

White Water Rafting

White water rafting is a fun activity for the entire family, but I don’t recommend it for the squeamish. Olivia decided to stay on the sidelines on our first go-around. She relented it after seeing Aaron having so much fun.  Consult experts before booking a ride, not every place is suited for children.   The Telaga Waja River is only suited for kids 9 years old and above.  The Ayung River is slightly easier and is suitable for children as young as 5.

Waterparks

Bali has perfect spots for water fun. One of the most popular is Waterbom.  It’s a paradise of water slides that made me feel like a kid again.  Aaron and Oliva were screaming their heads off with joy the entire time.  Their water slides that made me feel like a kid again too.
I recommend paying a visit to Splash Waterpark if you have small children. It is smaller, which allows you to keep an eye on your kids across the whole park.  It also makes the children safer in the water park and the experience less dangerous.  Come fully equipped with swimsuits in tow.
Treetop adventures
After splashing around for some time, we felt the need to cap off our vacation with a bang. We knew that Aaron was into sports and that Olivia would likely want to follow her brother’s lead.  The Treetop Adventure Park was filled with all sorts of circuits and courses.
Old fashioned tree-climbing was just what they needed.  Your little ones will want to explore at length leaving you and your weary bones in the dust as you struggle to catch up. The zip line we boarded at the end of our trips makes my head spin.
The island is remarkably kid-friendly.  My children were welcome in most places with open arms. Bali will always be at the top of my list for family vacation spots. I encourage anyone to try it out and see for themselves what all the fuss about.

 

Image-Heather-GreenHeather is a accounting professional turned SAHM of two and a Midwest housewife.  She was born in England, and met the love of her life in Italy while studying abroad. In her free time she enjoys gardening, jeopardy, and planning family gatherings and vacations.