Snowy Denmark: Beautiful Winter Kingdom

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Many tourists associate Denmark with Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytales, a bronze statue of the Little Mermaid by Edvard Eriksen, the ships in the port of Copenhagen, and improbably colorful cities.

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK

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The resorts of Denmark, like German ones, are highly popular in Europe. The reason for that is the special culture and unique atmosphere of the country. If most travelers know practically everything about Germany, Denmark remains partly unknown for the average traveler. Let’s understand where to go and what to try in this beautiful country.

Geographically located in Northern Europe, Denmark occupies more than 1000 islands located primarily in the Baltic Sea, Wadden Sea, North Sea, South Funen Archipelago, and Nakskov Fjord. It is situated between Germany, Norway, and Sweden. The country’s total surface area is 42,394 square kilometers.

Denmark

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Denmark has more than 5.5 million inhabitants, and 80% of them are Lutherans. However, there are a lot of atheists in the country – 20% of the population.

An interesting site is the royal palace Amaliyendborg. It is the capital masterpiece in rococo style consisting of four buildings. In the middle is a square laid out by tile and stone blocks. Not only are there hundreds of tourists, but also the royal family lives here. Unlike Buckingham Palace, guests are invited to the territory of Amalianborga. The building endured an awful fire, but has been skillfully restored.

Denmark,winter

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Besides the palace complex and magnificent grounds, there are park and museum platforms on the territory. It is possible to come here Tuesday through Sunday in all seasons of the year. Operating time is from 11:00 till 16:00; entrance fee – 95 Danish kroner.

For those who like easy rest, Denmark has Lalandiya Aqua Park. It is a whole complex with numerous attractions and skating rinks. There is even a small town that has a lot of motels. Lalandiya is a famous place to visit not only for tourists, but also for numerous locals.

Farmhouse and frosty trees against a blue sky.

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The aqua park is famous for its large surface. It is open year round from 10:00 till 19:00. Entrance fee is 220 Danish kroner for adults, 170 – for children.

Denmark is all about fairytales; therefore, it invites guests to “Andersen’s World.” It is a big museum devoted to works of the great children’s writer. Here you will be met by wax Hans Christian, and you will be able to see the setting in which he wrote his well-known creations.

Favorite fairy tale characters and exhibits from the writer’s life and works are presented in the museum. The walls are decorated with numerous pictures and illustrations. In this house, Andersen lives on, and a magic atmosphere still reigns. The museum is open June to May, from 10:00 till 18:00. Entrance fee is 60 Danish kroner.

 

YYZ Travel Group, TICO:#04332359. 7851 Dufferin Street, Suite 100. Thornhill, Ontario L4J 3M4.
Published: 13/12/2017

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Roatan – A Diving Mecca

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Published: 12/12/2017

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Authentic Cuban Cruise Adventure

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YYZ Travel Group, TICO:#04332359. 7851 Dufferin Street, Suite 100. Thornhill, Ontario L4J 3M4.
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Published: 11/12/2017

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Guadeloupe – Pearl of the Caribbean

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French Guadeloupe is a great place for active recreation and for exploration of a Caribbean island.

Let’s look at its most interesting points!

  1. The La Soufriere volcano.

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La Soufriere is only 1,467 meters high, but climbing it is a real adventure (lazy tourists can get almost to the top by bus). On the way up, the climate changes completely, and so do the surrounding flora and fauna. A popular hiking route runs along a small lake on the slope of the volcano, hidden by lush vegetation (Grand Etang). On the way back, be sure to pay attention to the hot springs at the foot of the mountain.

  1. Pigeon Island and the Cousteau Reserve.
Pigeon island, St. Lucia from the British fort. This island is st. Lucia's national park

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This small stony island is not remarkable for picturesque views, and almost no one lands on it. It is famous for the sea reserve of Cousteau, located around the island below the water’s surface. The inventor of the aqualung was so fascinated by the local underwater beauty that he founded a reserve park here. It is perfectly suitable for beginning divers: the depth is low, the sea is calm, and the shore is very close.

  1. Saint Anne Beach.
Tropical beach of Sainte Anne - Caribbean Sea - Guadeloupe tropical island

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St. Anne is the most popular Guadeloupe beach. It is the best place both for surfers and fans of lazy beach relaxation. Here you can lie on white sand without going far from civilization. Also, you can take surfing lessons, or take a ferry to the wild beaches of the nearest islands – Desireado, Marie-Galante, and Le Sant.

  1. Botanical Garden in Deshaies.
Guadeloupe, Deshaies,

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The Botanical Garden was founded about 10 years ago on territory of the former estate of the French comedian Kolyusha. The garden is relatively small but very diverse: the collection of orchids, baobabs, and a dozen different types of palm trees is especially noteworthy. You can also feed the giant carp in the pond here, and admire the flamingos and parrots in the park.

  1. National Park of Guadeloupe.
Guadeloupe, Caribbean Islands, France

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This park occupies about 10% of the country’s whole territory. It is located on Basse-Terre island. You can go through it in a couple of hours by car, but it is better to walk on one of the many hiking trails. In one day, you can move from rainforest to coastal forest and end up in a mangrove path. When you reach waterfalls in the Buyant area, do not forget to look around; there is a great chance you’ll see Guadalupe raccoons, mongooses, and goats.

  1. Petite Terre Islands
Iguane gris - Petite Terre - Guadeloupe

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The uninhabited islands of Ptit-Ter is a reserve. The pristine underwater world attracts divers from around the globe. From November to April you can also see dolphin and whale migrations here. And be sure to walk out to the old lighthouse, trying not to step on the numerous iguanas there.  

  1. Pointe-à-Pitre
Sunrise at Pointe à Pitre harbor - Guadeloupe Caribbean island

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The largest city on the archipelago is the landing point for most tourists. Notably, it was founded in 1654 as a slave market. The best things in this town are fine restaurants and food markets that any gourmet can admire. Pointe-a-Pitre is full of French colonial-style houses, a fishing-town atmosphere, and fine climate.

Here in Guadalupe, French traditions and the Creole spirit are mixed in a fanciful way. The local cuisine is a feast of spices, seafood, and exotic fruits. For good reason, Jacques-Yves Cousteau claimed Guadalupe to be one of the best places in the world.

The Most Unusual World Hotels

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More and more hotels have now become attractions in themselves: an ice hotel, an underwater hotel, and even a salt hotel! Let’s look at the most unusual hotels in the world:

  1. Ecocamp Patagonia – Torres del Paine National Park, Chile.
Ecocamp

Photo: instagram.com/ecocamp/

This hotel combines luxury and minimal interference with the environment. Each room is a separate tent-dome, and all guests receive comfortable accommodations and necessary amenities. The hotel is built of environmentally friendly materials and uses renewable energy sources.

  1. Kokopelli Cave Bed and Breakfast – Farmington, New Mexico, USA.
Kokos Cave

Photo: kokoscave.com

Rooms in this hotel are carved out of rock. In addition to several bedrooms, there are kitchen and Jacuzzi. The cave maintains a temperature of +20 to +23 °C, and from its windows you can see the La Plata River and a vast desert. The hotel administration feeds the local birds and animals, taking care of not only their guests.

  1. Malmaison Oxford Castle – Oxford, United Kingdom.
Malmaison Oxford Castle

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This British boutique hotel is located in a former prison building, constructed in the Victorian era. In the ex-prison cells, in addition to a comfortable bed, there is a shower, satellite TV, and adjustable lighting. A beer restaurant and bars are also in the structure.

  1. Seaventures Dive Resort – Sipadan Island, Malaysia.
Seaventures Dive Resort

Photo: hotelyouwant.com

This hotel is made on an old oil platform. Here you can go diving in the ocean without leaving the hotel: it is enough to descend under water in an elevator.

  1. Icehotel – Jukkasjärvi, Sweden.
Church and chapel of Ice Hotel near Kiruna, Lapland, north Sweden

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This is the first ice hotel in the world. Since 1990, it has been constructed annually for the period from December to April. The entire hotel is made of snow and ice blocks taken from the River Turn-Elv. Even interior details are made of ice, except for the beds.

  1. Brussels Welcome Hotel – Brussels, Belgium.

Photo: tripexpert.com

At first it was a luxury restaurant, which then turned into a luxury hotel. It was so popular that one day there were no vacant rooms for clients. Then two additional floors were designed and assembled in the city of Ghent, and harmoniously added right to the historical 19th century building.

  1. Jumbo Stay – Stockholm, Sweden.

Photo: wuzzup.ru

This hotel is an old Boeing 747-200, converted into a budget hotel. Here you can sleep, for example, in the cockpit, which is equipped as a suite with a panoramic view of Stockholm-Arlanda Airport.

  1. Palacio de Sal – Uyuni, Bolivia.

The hotel is located on the border of Salar de Uyuni at an altitude of about 3650 meters. Palacio de Sal is built entirely of salt blocks. The most important rule for guests is not to lick the walls and to take care of the interior objects made of salt.

  1. Capsule hotels in Tokyo, Japan.

These are small sleeping cells stacked one above the other. The hotels are built next to railway stations and airports. Accommodations are quite Spartan, but cheap and available.

 

The capsule hotel in Tokyo, Green Plaza Shinjuku Capsule, although not the first, is the largest of this kind of hotel in the world: there are 660 rooms of 1x2x1 meters.

Here, as in many other places in Japan, people with tattoos will not be allowed: in Japan tattoos are still associated with the yakuza.

What to Do in Okinawa

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Okinawa Prefecture is a strange and amazing place even for Japanese.

Forget all your ideas about Japan. In Okinawa, you will see beaches and palm trees instead of stone gardens, small houses with tiled roofs instead of neon skyscrapers. There are also no pale office clerks – only vigorous old people, long-livers in colorful shirts.

Okinawa

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Some people say that Okinawa mostly looks like the illegitimate descendant of Thailand and Hawaii –  brought up by Japan.

Initially, the territory of Okinawa was the separate state of Ryukyu. But at the end of the 19th century, this archipelago became part of Japan. After that, Okinawa turned into a sleepy region, and it remains the poorest Japanese prefecture till this day.

But at the same time, it is the warmest one. The archipelago is located on the same latitude as The Bahamas. Sakura blooms here in January, temperatures do not drop below +15 or 20 °C, and its golden sand beaches are considered to be the best in the region.

Okinawa

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The locals are very positive old people. They have the highest life expectancy in the world: according to statistics, there are about 20 centenarians per 100,000 people in the United States; in Okinawa, there are more than 60 of them.

These words are carved on a big stone near the village of Ogimi,: “At 70 you are still a child; at 80 – a young man; and when your ancestors call you in your 90s, ask them to wait until you turn 100 – and only then, perhaps you will think about it.”

The concentration of centenarians in Ogimi is especially great. Local residents rarely suffer from strokes, sclerosis, Alzheimer’s syndrome or other common age-related illnesses.

At a hundred years old they are cheerful as they were at 20; many continue to work and to participate actively in the lives of their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

Shuri Castle Gate

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Scientists still do not know the secret of this phenomenon.

The locals have their own maxims:

– To live long, you should work more in the open air!

– It is necessary to eat properly and not to overeat: a cup of rice a day, tofu and some seafood – that’s the recipe for longevity.

– All illnesses are caused by regrets and sadness about the past. We must be able to enjoy life, whatever it is.

The morning view from my apartment balconey

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The concept of joy is fundamental in Okinawa. There is even a special word for this: Ikigai. It means – something that makes you wake up every morning with joy.

Tourists mostly go to Okinawa to enjoy the sea. The archipelago is considered to be the best place in Japan for a beach holiday. It is also perfect for diving – the largest coral reef in Japan (about 20 kilometers) lies here, on Okinawa’s shores.

The underwater world is incredibly rich, and the sea is transparent to a depth of 50 meters. Additionally, you can even observe whales, who also love these waters.

There is one important local culinary rule – do not overeat. They even have a saying, “hara hachi bu” – “eat to satisfy 8/10 of your hunger and get up”.

The best time for a beach holiday is from the middle of June to the end of August. January and February are also great: the islands start to bloom with cherry blossoms, and there are a lot of whales in the coastal waters.

LOW PRICES FOR CUBA!

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YYZ Travel Group, TICO:#04332359. 7851 Dufferin Street, Suite 100. Thornhill, Ontario L4J 3M4.
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Published: 29/11/2017

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Tips for Visiting Florida

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  1. Fans of shopping should pay special attention to the shopping center located in the port of Miami; the huge number of fashion brands will excite you.
    At this shopping mall it’s possible to find literally any goods and to get them at the most attractive prices.
  2. If you are planning to travel around the state and not stay in one city, we suggest that you rent a car. This would be a wise and money-saving decision, especially if you are traveling with a group.
    You should remember, however, that there are enormous downtown traffic jams in the morning and evening.

    Photo: stock.adobe.com

  3. If you are looking for beach recreation, we suggest that you travel to the east coast of the state.
    Local beaches there are ideal for all kinds of surfing. So, if you like active vacations, Florida is an ideal choice for you. The western coast, on the contrary, is very quiet and relaxing; it is an excellent place for family rest or romantic getaways.
  4. Florida has unique climatic conditions; it is possible to go there in any season. It’s an ideal place for tourists, as your vacation will not be spoiled by weather (except maybe by hurricanes from August to November )no matter what time of year you come.
    Florida is a place where winter temperatures seldom fall below + 18°C. The state is often visited in winter by tour lovers and pedestrian tourists.

    Photo: stock.adobe.com

  5. It is highly recommended to buy tickets in advance for entertainment events and amusement parks. If you don’t want to stand in long lines for a few hours, think about booking tickets online.
  6. Florida is a place where you can pay with your credit card almost everywhere. The only time you might need cash is in remote shops or small beach restaurants.
    You don’t need to take lots of cash with you when walking anywhere; however, we suggest that you always have some dollars in case you can’t pay with a card.

    Skyscraper at the waterfront

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  7. If you are a nature lover and really admire picturesque scenery in foreign countries, this advice is for you. Explore the Florida National Scenic Trail Road. The railroad runs through the whole territory of the state; one of the most beautiful stretches goes around Lake Okeechobee.
  8. Walking in national reserves is possible only if you are accompanied by a guide, and many areas are closed for free visits. Outdoor recreation is widespread in Florida, but you shouldn’t settle in for a picnic in the first park you encounter; you need to know their specific rules in advance.

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Last Minute Holiday Savings

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YYZ Travel Group, TICO:#04332359. 7851 Dufferin Street, Suite 100. Thornhill, Ontario L4J 3M4.
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Published: 18/11/2017

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Season of Saving Event

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YYZ Travel Group, TICO:#04332359. 7851 Dufferin Street, Suite 100. Thornhill, Ontario L4J 3M4.
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Published: 03/04/2017

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