The first time we visited Alaska we flew into Anchorage and planned out a self drive itinerary by land. The thinking was that this would allow us to see and do more.
And while we had an incredible time, camping in the rugged interior of Denali, and encountering bears along some of the States most scenic drives, we actually missed out on the big show.
Because cruising actually allows you to experience more of Alaska than a land based DIY tour; while cruising offers the best of both worlds, and allows for land based excursions, driving means you completely miss out on sailing on the icy seas.
Cruising in Alaska means whale watching at 6am as soon as you fall out of bed. It means the opportunity to visit islands and towns not accessible by road. It means dining on fresh salmon as you float past massive blue glaciers, and snow-capped mountains shrouded in mist.
If you’re thinking of cruising Alaska, the word epic barely does the experience justice. Here are 7 things you can expect to see.
India is a land of chaotic charm; a country with a civilization dating back to 5500 BC, and a culture which is a pandemonic mix of the modern and the ancient worlds.
While many travelers visit India to experience spirituality, culture, and history, the country also has an incredible natural allure.
From the icy peaks of the Himalayas in the North, to the sun-kissed beaches in the South; from the dry deserts of the west to the wettest place on earth in the east, India is often rightly called the mini world.
The following are 10 of India’s greatest natural wonders, but visit now; with an evolving world climate, some of these sites may not exist for too long.
In today’s age of social awareness, travelers are increasingly aware of the environmental impact in tourism.
A recent revolution which prioritizes responsible travel has swept up the travel industry, and it is becoming more and more difficult to ignore that irresponsible travel choices have a long-lasting effect on our planet.
But ecotourism goes beyond taking steps to reduce our carbon footprint, and if you’re truly committed to reducing your environmental impact, this should reflect in more basic choices too; like the fabrics you choose when purchasing travel clothing.
Many of us dream of taking an African safari at least once in our lives. And to witness wild lions lazing in the grass, and elephants trekking across vast plains; to spend time watching a magical sunrise as the African landscape comes alive; this truly is the experience of a lifetime.
But just as there are many countries to choose from for an African safari, there are also many types of safari experience, and the key to planning a memorable trip is to choose one that aligns with your interests.
Whether you’re a wildlife explorer ready to track wildlife in a classic jeep, or a cultural enthusiast who wants to take a walking safari led by local tribes, there isn’t one set ‘African Safari’. There are a huge range of safaris suited to all types of travelers, and all types of budgets, so don’t be fooled into thinking that your destination is the most important choice to make.
Here are our tips for choosing the perfect safari experience.
Living in Tasmania means I have well over 200 waterfalls to choose from that are scattered all across this wild and rugged island state.
While they may not be as massive or notable as Iguazu, Niagara, or Victoria Falls; the many cascades of Tasmania can be enjoyed in peace without the mass attention and tourism more popular waterfalls are flooded with.
Many of Tasmania’s most loved waterfalls are easily accessible and can be reached by short easy hikes. Others require a bit more stamina and navigation to reach, while some are just plain secretive and a bit of a challenge to experience.
Here are the top falls you’re sure to fall in love with.
Ask any resident or visitor to Tasmania about the biggest highlight of the island and most will say Cradle Mountain. Cradle Mountain–Lake St Clair National Park makes up part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, which is one of the largest conservation areas in Australia. Home to a wide array of rare and endemic plants and animals, it showcases the best nature and wildlife Tasmania has to offer.
According to latest statistics, half of all travelers to Tasmania come to see its wildlife and many natural attractions. Most travellers place Cradle Mountain on their itinerary due to its ease of access and range of facilities available.
The Cradle Mountain Hotel offers the chance to take in this wild and rugged natural Aussie icon in comfort and luxury. Our own personal Cradle Mountain Hotel experience was one we will never forget and already has us planning our next getaway to this remarkable part of Tasmania.
Every year during September and October, tulip season in Tasmania is one of the most spectacular draws to the Cradle Coast.
A tulip farm atop a 12 million year old volcano, Table Cape Tulip Farm features acres of patchwork fields that fly into a rage of color each spring.
Unsurprisingly, people come from far and wide to see this spectacle, and delight in wandering through the farm. In fact, these are the largest tulip fields in the Southern Hemisphere that you can actually wander in.
Given that Florida boasts more miles of coastline than any U.S. state other than chilly Alaska, you might have imagined it would be relatively easy to find a peaceful beach here, away from the tourist throng.
Alas, it’s actually a far-from-straightforward task, in large part because the locals aren’t usually too eager to tell you about them (understandable, after-all, why would you not want to keep such secluded gems to yourself!)
The good news, though, is that we’ve strung together many of the best secret beaches based on our own local knowledge from 8 years living in the Sunshine State.
Let’s be honest. Making ethical travel choices isn’t always easy. And it’s often the least sustainable means of travel which come in the cheapest, while companies who champion positive ethical values and responsible travel are slightly more expensive.
Responsible and ethical travel will require you to do your research before you visit a place. It will cost time, money and effort. But it doesn’t have to be overwhelming, and you can often make an individual impact by being willing to make a couple of simple lifestyle changes.
We can’t all live in the mountains and eat only what we have grown in our vegetable patches, however part of our duty as travellers is being aware that our decisions (yes, even on holiday!) have a significant impact on our natural surroundings.
I genuinely believe that we can explore the world and discover new cultures and places, while honouring and respecting the planet. Here are a few of my suggestions for how to travel in a more ethically conscious way.
When it comes to stunning islands, we are fortunate to live on a planet where we’re spoiled for choice. From the Greek Islands to some 7,000 that form the Philippines, paradise islands inhabit all corners of the globe.
And whether you’re satisfying a craving for adventure, or searching for a potent Caribbean rum, there are plenty of options that will make you feel worlds away from the urban craziness you’ve traveled to escape.
The following are 10 of the world’s most stunning tourist islands. Leave us a comment at the end and weigh in on your favorite island experiences around the globe.
The UK is one of the top rated destinations by travellers, and for good reason. It is a destination that transports you into a real life fairytale complete with castles, gardens, kings, and princesses.
While most visitors focus their time and attention around the big cities as they take in all the pubs, nightlife, and Royal sights, the UK’s off the beaten path areas are equally enticing. The UK is filled with abundant natural attractions that can easily be explored by renting a car and taking an unforgettable road trip.
A road trip through the UK is by far the best way to experience all the region has to offer especially as it isn’t all that large. You will find wonderful hotels throughout the country in both iconic cities and charming small towns, all of which make great overnight stopping points or bases from which to explore the UK’s greatest natural landscapes.
So get off the London tube and take full control of your next UK holiday by taking a self drive tour of some of the UK’s lesser known treasures. They’re even more impressive than Buckingham or Big Ben!
Experiencing underwater life never ceases to inspire and amaze. Offering an entirely different pace, human beings have long been enchanted by the blue silence, surrounded by marine life.
It is true that some of the coolest places on the planet are under water. There are hotels, shipwrecks, temples, museums, restaurants and other underwater sites around the world that are worth diving and snorkeling for.
While the list of exceptional underwater experiences seems as endless as the great depths of the sea, we’ve put together our favorites; some the top sites to don a full face snorkel mask and explore underwater life.
Jungles may make up only six percent of the earth’s land surface, but they produce nearly half of all the oxygen we require to survive. And, home to some of the world’s most iconic and endangered wildlife, jungle destinations offer a travel experience unlike any other.
Jungle trekking is a way to transport yourself back to a time of exploration as you come face to face with landscapes and animals few people have seen with their own eyes; from the lush humid jungles of the Amazon, to spotting tigers and sloth bears in the national parks of Nepal.
On June 5th, over 140 nations will participate in celebrating World Environment Day. And what better way to celebrate than by listing the countries that are home some of the world’s greatest rainforests.
We can only hope that through continued conservation efforts and sustainable eco-tourism, we can preserve these great jungles for generations to come. You might think that jungle trekking sounds primitive, but you might be surprised to find that the best hotels for jungle trekking are as much luxury as they are eco-lodge!
Coral reefs are one of our planet’s most unique beauties, a must on any travel bucket lists. Their gleaming vivid colors and the explosion of shapes and sizes fascinate onlookers and provide an idyllic habitat to countless species.
There are many ways in which you can visit a coral reef and admire its breath-taking beauty, while you still can. Tourism to coral reefs around the world happen in a highly supervised manner so that our presence doesn’t further contribute to their extinction.
The following are five unique trips which will allow you to explore the true beauty of the world’s coral reefs.
What was your last vacation like? Did you really get the rest you were longing for all year long, or did you arrive home exhausted, wishing for nothing but a hot shower and to spend the next day in bed?
Most people in the world today live a rushing, fast-paced life, and this lifestyle seeps into the way we travel. We try to cram as much “vacation” into the limited time we have as possible, checking off landmarks, restaurants, and theme parks from our lists as if we were paid to do so.
But rushing from tourist attraction to tourist attraction robs the whole concept of travel of its depth and meaning. Luckily, there is a new movement quietly emerging to show us that we can do better – slow travel.
It is a nation of breathtaking scenery, medieval castles, rich culture, and of course, Guinness. This magical island known as Ireland has long been charming visitors, with its residents offering their warmest welcome and all too eager to share why they believe their country is one of the finest.
Ireland is a destination suited to nearly every type of traveller; I assure you its treasures will leave a lasting buzz much stronger than any amount of Jameson could ever inflict. Here, old world charm meets modern day luxuries, making an Irish holiday both magical and carefree.
So whether you’re a solo backpacker seeking a true adventure or simply want to enjoy retired life with the love of your life, pack your bags and head to the Emerald Isle for a holiday you won’t soon forget.
Melbourne may be Australia’s second largest city, but just outside the city (and even within) you’ll find incredible natural attractions where you can witness a wide range of wildlife.
Just outside Melbourne’s CBD you’ll find some of Australia’s finest sanctuaries for authentic wildlife encounters, home to both Australian and international species. And within the city, there are an incredible range of attractions, including the zoo, the aquarium, and many nature parks prolific with native wildlife.
Admission fees can start getting quite expensive after you hit a few of these attractions. So we recommend purchasing a Melbourne iVenture Card for up to 40% of the city’s best wildlife experiences (the card also includes a wealth of attractions within the city itself).
Japan could easily be considered to be among the world’s most desired destinations. I mean, who hasn’t dreamed of watching the sun set over a tori gate, visit the thousands of shrines in Kyoto, or witness dawn from the top of Mt. Fuji?
And in terms of getting around, the country has one of the safest, cleanest, fastest, most efficient, punctual and convenient public transportation networks in the world. But while you might be tempted by the city subways, bullet trains, or even by catching a flight, we opted for an entirely different way of seeing Japan: by bike.
With considerate drivers, great infrastructure, and a well connected network of roads, Japan is a perfect destination for bicycle touring first-timers. We spent 3 months on our bikes exploring Kyushu, Shikoku, and Southern Honsu, but you still can easily cover a wide cross section of Japan in 7 – 10 days.
It was the crack of dawn but Peter and Jeanie Kelly from Murray Offroad Adventures were on time and ridiculously chirpy. All it took, however, was a dash down the Mallee Highway and a quick pit stop at the Hattah General store (Jeanie phoned our coffee order ahead, the star) for those early-morning dozy feels to disappear as the day started to brighten and the temperature began to rise.
The pink lakes of Murray Sunset National Park are truly breathtaking. Endlessly blue skies sit against bright pink waters and sparkling salt deposits; this is one phenomenon you have to see to believe.
We’ve all seen the obnoxious tourists waddling out of Subway in some beautiful, ancestral city. Chances are, if you catch us on the right day, we’ve all been that tourist.
There is, however, a revolution in tourism that is really starting to take off. A whole new way of thinking which prioritizes responsible travel, and considers the impact we have on the communities and environments we visit abroad.
The negative impacts of tourism are usually pretty clear to the traveler feeling particularly perceptive. But ecotourism is the belief that travel should be ultimately beneficial to both the tourist and the host country.
There is a balance we should all try to find while traveling: remain safe but also truly experience the local scene. Make ripples, but not a splash. Take only memories, leave only footprints. The following are four key things to consider for those looking to travel responsibly in 2018.
As an avid traveler, if I find myself worrying about something it’s usually something like missing a flight, losing my passport, a hotel not having my reservation, etc. But one thing I’ve never really worried about while travelling is encountering a snake.
Being Australian, I was of course well aware of the sheer number of venomous snakes present throughout my own country. After all, half of the world’s top 10 most venomous snakes are found here. But as a nature enthusiast and avid hiker, my travels have seen me run into snakes in almost every country I’ve been to.
For the traveler who spends time in the outdoors, trying to avoid snakes completely is nearly impossible and in doing so, you would miss out on some truly remarkable places. By protecting yourself against snakebite vs. avoiding snakes, you can enjoy exploring anywhere your wanderlust cares to take you.
Having decreased by nearly 30% over the past decades, the Bald Uakari has been sadly downgraded to vulnerable from near threatened due to the usual causes of rainforest animal declines, habitat destruction, hunting, and the pet trade.