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Visiting Puerto Vallarta

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Resort Garza Blanca Preserve Vallarta

There are beach destinations and then there is Puerto Vallarta. I am sure most of us must have heard of Cancun, Playa del Carmen or Los Cabos. These are quite popular and well known. But if you prefer something most luxurious and high end then Puerto Vallarta is one destination which gives even tourist destinations in the developed countries a run for their money.

Puerto Vallarta is situated in the Jalisco state of Mexico. Its location seems to be chosen by the God chosen himself. With palm-covered lush green Sierra Madre Occidental hills on one side and Pacific Ocean’s Bahia de Banderas, Puerto Vallarta is a nature lover’s paradise. It’s golden sand beaches, old-town charm, art community and world class restaurants have made it the most popular destination for people who are well travelled and appreciate fine living.

Puerto Vallarta Gustavo DíazOrdaz International Airport is well connected with almost all major cities in USA, Canada and Europe. Every year it handles more than 2.5 million passengers. It is the eight busiest airport in Mexico.

Getting to the airport is very easy and so is travelling in Puerto Vallarta. Puerto Vallarta has bus services which are very convenient, affordable and easily available. With the bus network, traveling within the city is a breeze even for tourists. Taxies are also easily available but tourists are advised to fix the fare before getting in to avoid any unnecessary hassles later on. Car rentals are also common in Puerto Vallarta.

Puerto Vallarta is heaven sent for fishing and water sports lovers. Los Arcos and Islas Marietas in the Bahía de Banderas are two great spots for diving and snorkeling. The warm pacific waters are perfect for snorkeling all through the year. The best time to visit is between June to December. The aquatic life teeming below the water has to be seen to be believed. Giant Manta rays, dolphins, sea turtles, angel fish are abundant. While snorkeling you will encounter cornet fish, puffer fish, and parrot fish, moray eels, spotted eagle rays, starfish and seahorses and other tropical fishes. Colomitos and Majahuitas are other two popular spots for snorkeling and diving. The wild marine life will surely leave you spellbound even after you come up. Sport fishing is another popular activity in Puerto Vallarta. You can sign up for one of the many fishing tours. Yellowfin tuna, Black and Blue Marlin are some of the popular fishes for anglers in Puerto Vallarta.

If you prefer to just sit back and get a health tan then take your spot at Playa de los Muertos. For nature lovers, the JardinesBotánicos de Vallarta tropical garden near Puerto Vallarta with orchids, wild palms and host of butterflies and hummingbirds is a treat not to be missed. Puerto Vallarta has been always popular with artsy folks as it has plenty art museums and galleries.

The MuseodelCuale is a small museum with an enviable collection of Mexico’s history consisting of archaeological artifacts, traditional Mexican arts and crafts, folklore displays and some well-preserved pre-Hispanic items. The Manuel Lepe Museum also has a collection of works created by world famous artist Manuel Lepe.

Another museum, Museo Ernesto Munoz Acosta has the works of the Huichol Indians and modern artists such as Sergio Bustamente and Manuel Lepe. It also showcases many promising artists.

Naval History Museum in El Centro is the newest entry featuring a permanent collection of cartography, documents, images, navigation instruments, paintings, and scale models.

Puerto Vallarta has a sub-tropical climate which means abundant rain. Heaviest rainfall occurs between June and September. December and January are the peak months for both tourism and warmth.

What are the Best Cars for a Holiday in Uganda?

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There various ways one can traverse through the land of Karamoja, the Albertine Rift rolls of Volcanos, through the roars of the Murchison is dreamt travel experience. Holiday cars in Uganda are available to ensure all drifter’s rootless pleasure either with a guided trip or a self-guided vacation.

When searching for holiday car rentals, these are customized for adventures with a popup for an incredible game viewing, and of various seating capacities. And are all 4×4 cruisers which can traverse through almost all terrains.

Self-guided tours are sprouting to become so popular where many of the travelers prefer renting a car and drive their own way. This adds value on one’s traveling list among which is the freedom and privacy which are enjoyed while exploring the most attention of traveling. There is a wider range of fleet to consider choosing through for that planned thrilling adventure that runs through the beautiful Ugandan land.

Spotting the best holiday car rental in Uganda

The most cause of embarrassments on a holiday in Africa is not having the right vehicle, must keep this in mind that roads in Africa are very tough and if make a wrong selection of the vehicle. Always 4×4 vehicles have always been competent vehicles and choosing a vehicle depends on the purpose, areas to drive to and capacity of the vehicle.

Different options for car rentals in Uganda can be found at any corner of the country right from the airport, one can just commute to any nearby car rental offices. The best car rental advice is hire a vehicle in advance and this is done using the virtual mean, by browsing through a list of car rentals in Uganda one spot out that best car rental through drawing down your specifications.

Best time to hire holiday cars in Uganda

At any time one hire out a holiday vehicle, but should keep in mind that holiday vehicles are highly demanded and they may not be available anytime one wishes. The best recommended time to rent a car in Uganda is booking in advance at least 2 month before the date use date. If considering to travel in peak seasons of June to September and December to February which the prices tend to hike due to market demand considering renting at least 4 month before is a accurate ideal not to follow victims of hiked car rental rates.

Car rentals for holiday drive in Uganda

Adventure in Africa are road based safaris which require a 4×4 wheel drives that can cruise throughout the land. There are variety of customized holiday 4×4 cars in Uganda accommodating all classes of travelers and all capacities accordingly as they’re stated.

Same way, you can self-drive in Rwanda during your extended holiday to the land of a thousand hills with no limitations. If you rent one from Uganda, you will need to meet the comesa and border crossing fee

Rav4 SUV

Very accommodative to solo travelers and a group of less than 4 people and it’s most considerate vehicle for travelers on a limited budget. Rav4 was made with a fulltime 4×4 drive with either manual or an automatic transmission. For couples traveling on a considerate budget, this is your best choice. The Rav4 available for holidays in Uganda are 1998 to 2005, but are maintain in a perfect mechanical conditions.

 Land cruiser Prado

The 4×4 Prado land cruiser comes in different models among which can include TX, V8, GX, and VX. A selection of the Prado is very accommodative for groups of 4 people enjoying super mid-range as well some models are customized for luxury safaris including the GX, V8, and VX. The safari customized 4×4 Toyota Prado Land cruisers are built with a pop up for a rewarding game viewing and very comfortable with roof tent camping.

Land cruiser hardtop

Mainly known as safari extended vehicles, these are the best fitting vehicles for an adventure throughout Africa. The vehicles are extra designed and fully customized for African adventures that they can cruise through the tuff bumpy roads. They are designed with a twenty-four-hour 4×4 drive made in over 70 series with a wider pop up for game viewing and can carry up to 8 travelers and not available for self-drive, however, can be hired with a driver. This is the most reliable holiday cars in Africa for unlimited cruise to off the beaten path.

Super custom/ Min vans

Groups travelers in number not more than 9 having a van/ super custom is an echoing idea. This is very suitable for travelers in groups but on a limited, they can be rented out for a self-drive depending on the model.  All safari customized vans have 4×4 wheel drive to camouflage through the hard roads with pop up for game viewing, enough and comfortable  seating spaces even on a long journey, enough space to carry as much luggage. They are of varying rates accommodating various travelers’ right from luxury, mid-range and budget.

What a the components of a good Vacation

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Rwanda Vacation

A vacation is not something that happens always. So please since it happens once in a lifetime, one has to plan for it completely in advance. So this planning takes a lot of forms ranging from when to go, where to go, what to see when there as well as what to carry on the trip. So this planning starts with making a reservation for your vacation with the right company and flightsHowever, check the list of the essential things to pack with you below in order to have a stress-free holiday.

Documents

First things first: you cannot go anywhere without your documents, so you’d better check you have yours and those of your family before leaving the house. When organizing a trip, be sure to know ahead of time if you will need a passport, visa, or just an identity card, and check if they are still valid and can be accepted in your destination country.

Universal plug adapter

This is one of those things you underestimate when you are in your country, but that is essential when going abroad. How are you going to charge your mobile phone? How are you going to use your blow dryer? There are different plugs and electricity sockets all around the world! Buy a universal plug adapter before leaving for your holiday and you will never have this problem again.

Medicine

No one wants to feel sick on holiday but you never know what might happen! So better remind yourself to bring some over-the-counter medicine with you during a holiday abroad, such as pain relievers and an anti-diarrheal plus mosquito repellants, and don’t forget your medicine, especially if you’re on prescription: of course, there are pharmacies everywhere, but the dosage may differ, so play it safe.

Guidebooks and dictionaries

Buy a guidebook and a dictionary before leaving for your holiday abroad. If you are traveling on your own, you might want to know more about the places you are visiting, their history and their background. Also, guidebooks give useful information about hotel, restaurants and things to do. Moreover, dictionaries often have a section with idiomatic expressions in the local language that will help you communicate easily abroad.

Small travel bag

It might be useful to bring a small travel bag with you, one that doesn’t take up too much space and that you can easily fit in your backpack or baggage (especially before security check at the airport). There you can put and carry all your travel documents, your passport and visa, your cellphone, guidebooks and wallet so that you have all at hand.

The above checklist has been incorporating general guidelines for a vacation anywhere in the world but Rwanda has some specific checklists(Rwanda Checklist) that you have to adhere to in order to have a worthwhile vacation.

Follow these simple recommendations and your holiday will not be ruined because you forgot something important at home!

-Your Passport must be at least 6 months validity, though more is advised

-You must have a Yellow fever vaccination card before being allowed entry into this country

-Credit Cards are not widely used in Rwanda and Uganda. However, you can carry one or two visa cards which you can use to withdraw cash from the ATMs and execute whatever you want to

-Please don’t waste your time carrying Debit Cards to Rwanda as they will never help since its use and know-how is very little in Rwanda.

-please try to carry some cash on you. Though you can withdraw from the ATMs they are not evenly distributed in the country especially outside the capital city of Kigali they are almost not there so it’s the cash you have on you that will rescue you.

-Carry all your accommodation vouchers, if you have booked in advance on your own.

-Soft copies of all important travel documents in form of photocopies just in case you need them.

Some of the important accessories to include;

– Backpack with rain cover – don’t put stuff into this that you don’t want to check in or leave at your hostel/guest house

– Daypack with rain cover – put all valuable stuff in it

– Money pouch or waist belt to be worn inside clothes

-Copy of all important documents in backpack. Copies include (bills of all camera gear so that you don’t get questioned at customs, passport, visa, travel insurance)

-Camera, Lens, Batteries, Charger, Filters, Battery Grip, Memory Cards, Card Reader and Camera Strap

-Cell phone and charger

-Earphones

-Laptop and Laptop charger

-Hair trimmer and charger

-Travel Adaptor (that can handle multiple country plug points).

Importantly, there is no visitor to any country that does not have a backpack. However, there are some elements that a good backpack must adhere to and possess in order to make one’s vacation a success.

It is phenomenal that every traveller must have a back packer majorly for the most important small things. A wrong choice of backpack means more shoulder pain and maybe back pain too. In essence, a bad backpack causes unnecessary pain during your holiday.  You can save yourself all that pain if you follow these handy tips that I have put together based on several experiences from various travelers that I have shared this issue with;

Size

For all practical purposes, male travelers should look for a backpack in the 55 to 65 liters category while female travelers should look for backpacks in the 45 to 55 liters category. I do understand that a lot of travelers want to carry the entire kitchen sink and if you do end up carrying it, carry it in a large trolley suitcase and not in a backpack. I have recommended the volume based on the average weight that one can comfortably carry on their back for long durations without complaining of any pain.

Proper and Comfortable Fit

A backpack should hug your back in a way like how a glove hugs your hands in a snug fit. Fit is super essential in getting the right backpack. There are 3 fits that one needs to take into account: Shoulder Fit, Lumbar Fit and Hip Fit. It is best to walk into a store to see which backpack fits you best as backpack fits typically varies with shoulder width, torso length and waist size.

Choosing a daypack for your travels

These days, backpacks come with small daypacks that can be detached from the main backpack. While these are super convenient and helpful, I do not prefer them as they affect the center of gravity while wearing the pack. But, if this option works for you, do opt for it, as it will offer you the convenience of a backpack and a daypack in one piece and for the price of one.

Semi Rain Proof Pack with a Rain Cover

Most backpacks come with rainproof material, but it is their zippers that are not rain-proof. The ones that have rain-proof zippers don’t last for long. My choice is a good semi rain-proof pack with a rain cover. The rain cover can either come with your pack or it can be purchased separately.

Should not blow like a Balloon

There are many backpacks that expand like a balloon on adding clothes and gear. You shouldn’t prefer such backpacks as they affect fit, center of gravity and end up taking too much weight. Go for packs that are a tight fit and thereby ensuring fit, posture, center of gravity and weight. Such packs come in very handy while you go on mountaineering expeditions, trekking and other adventure activities.

Many Compartments

The ease of packing and unpacking in a backpack depends on the number of compartments it has. Always prefer the ones that have top loading, middle loading and bottom loading facilities. That way, you can separately take the heavy items from the top, my clothes from the middle and my sleeping bag from the bottom without tossing the contents of the entire backpack. There should also be small fit pouches where you can store things that require quick access.

Anti-Tear

Like most baggage, backpacks also get thrown around at airports, train stations and bus stations and they also have to bear the elements. Hence, it is recommended that you choose a backpack that has a tough exterior with anti-tear properties.

Lightweight

Backpacks have to be light. It helps with airline weight regulations and is also appreciated by your shoulder.

Easy to Identify

Like with all baggage, buy a backpack that is easy to identify or at least put some sticker or badge that allows for easy identification.

Lockable Zippers

There is some level of mental satisfaction if you can put a lock on your backpack zippers. This helps everywhere especially at airports and in hotels. But, don’t trust these lockable zippers to store cash, electronics and or jewelry.

Best 5 Ecotourism Activities to do in Rwanda

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Nyungwe Canopy Walk

Gorilla tourism, bird watching, classic game drives, nature walks, cultural experiences, hiking, and lakeside relaxation are just some of the ways to spend your safari to Rwanda. The country has experienced a dynamic transformation since the tragic genocide that took place in 1994. Memorials are scattered throughout the country, but the people of the “Land of a Thousand Hills” do not let history control their destiny, and visitors have the opportunity to develop a deep appreciation for the growth and unity of the Rwandan people.

Conservation organizations, government agencies, and ordinary Rwandans have developed strategies to ensure long-term prosperity for the next generation, founded on the country’s many natural treasures, the best-known of which are the Virunga’s mountain gorillas of Rwanda.

The country also offers magnificent hiking and trekking through dense rain forests to the summits of volcanic peaks, and even high above the tree canopy. In Rwanda you are always near amazing wildlife, both large and small. The treetops are filled with the chatter of primates and the calls of birds. Butterflies drift along wind currents in search of the perfect wildflowers. As you explore the country’s outback, you sense the presence of the sovereigns who once ruled here, and you may even meet Rwandans who keep alive ancient traditions and crafts that go back many centuries.

The top adventure activities to do in Rwanda;

The Captivating Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda

Thanks to the incredible work of Dian Fossey and other global conservationists, Africa’s mountain gorillas have captured the hearts and minds of people around the world. If seeing these creatures in the wild is your ultimate dream, tour their natural habitat in Volcanoes Park. Efforts to protect mountain gorillas from the effects of habitat destruction, poaching, and other threats have led to the creation of an amazing infrastructure that provides the privacy and support the gorillas need to not only survive in the modern world, but thrive for generations to come.

The Rwandan government restricts the number of visitors who are allowed to view the gorillas, and this means that securing your premium spot for a mountain gorilla trek is a privilege few people experience. Estimates indicate that approximately half of the mountain gorillas in the world live in the Virunga Mountains that include the Rwandan Volcanoes National Park, so your primate trek through the montane forests will be rewarded with an hour of watching the gorillas engage in natural behaviors.

The heartwarming scene will highlight the close bonds between the members of the gorilla family, as well as the playful antics of gorilla infants. The presence of a powerful silverback will stir your emotions as he sits quietly, ever watchful of his family, with a gentle nature that makes human onlookers feel connected in an unexpected way. Participating in a mountain gorilla trek in Volcanoes National Park requires a great deal of coordination, as relatively limited permits are issued each day.

World-Class Hiking & Trekking

If you daydream about climbing, hiking and trekking in the African highlands bush, Rwanda is the preeminent destination for your outdoor vacation. Both Nyungwe Forest and Volcanoes Park offer superb networks of trails that take you into some of the most breathtaking landscapes on the planet.

The most challenging of the treks takes you to an elevation of 4507 meters, to the snow-capped summit of Mount Karisimbi in Volcanoes National Park, the highest peak of the eight major volcanoes in the Virunga field. The two-day trek will challenge you physically and mentally while immersing you in the beauty of four distinct vegetation zones.

The 6-7 hour amatuer ascent hike takes you near agricultural fields, through a forest, and near the Dian Fossey gravesite before reaching the unexpected surprise of a crater lake at the summit.

Meet Other Primates

Mountain gorillas are the best-known of Rwanda’s primates, but the country offers many other scampering creatures to delight visitors, including chimpanzees, golden monkeys, blue monkeys, and black and white colobus. Chimpanzees are considered the most human-like of primates, and Nyungwe National Park is the premium destination in Rwanda for chimpanzee viewing experiences. Just before daylight, you start a journey into the forests where families of chimps live in a natural habitat.

The effort to find them makes for a wondrous combination of adventure and mystery as you follow the keen leadership of a professional guide, learning the nuances of tracking and locating these fast-moving animals. Each day the groups of chimps move through the forest in search of food before finding a secluded place to build their nests and rest for the night. Fortunately, our guides are experts in locating the chimpanzees, so your chances of seeing them are very good.

Another primate species that thrills our guests is the golden monkey, a colorful species that constantly scampers through the treetops, stopping only to dine upon fruits and leaves. The golden monkeys of Rwanda can be found in the incredible bamboo forests of Volcanoes Park, as well as Gishwati-Mukura Forest in the northwestern part of the country. Unconfirmed sightings have also been reported in Nyungwe Forest.

Experience the Culture of Rwandan People

The three cultures of Rwanda once clashed, largely over socio-economic differences, but today the Tutsi, Hutu, and Twa peoples represent a common commitment to the betterment of all Rwandan people. Through unity, collaboration, and absolute dedication, the people of Rwanda take every measure to ensure that the fabric of their country is never again torn by genocide and other crimes against humanity. Meeting some of the people from these three tribes allows you to see the value of each of their cultures and their pride in the homeland.

Our goal is to provide our guests with authentic cultural engagements with Rwandan people while ensuring the privacy and respect that villagers need to maintain their cultural traditions. The activities allow villagers to share their culture, arts, beliefs, and much more, while providing a source of income that supports education, medical care, and other valuable resources.

At Gorilla Guardians Village, outside Volcanoes National Park, guests are greeted by an amazing presentation featuring traditional drumming and dancing coupled with warm, heartfelt Rwandan hospitality. You visit a replica of the king’s house, learn about traditional medicine, meet children at the local school, and even sample some delicious food and banana beer.

During your visit to Nyungwe National Park, take some time to explore Banda Village, in the heart of the park, and Kitabi Cultural Village, on the eastern edge of the park. With advance preparation, you can even stay overnight in the villages to see another side of day-to-day life here. Families traveling with older children always find the cultural activities in Rwanda to be educational and interesting for the loved ones.

Unique & Unforgettable Beach Escape

Believe it or not, Rwanda is home to one of Central Africa’s best beach escapes! Lake Kivu is the 18th deepest lake on the planet, with a total surface area of 2700 square kilometers at an elevation of 1460 meters. Imagine spending a few days exploring Rwanda’s lush green rain forests, communing with mountain gorillas, tracking chimpanzees, and walking in the footsteps of Rwandan kings, and then traveling a short distance to a sparkling lake and lovely beach for some rejuvenation.

Lake Kivu offers endless possibilities for fun-filled beach days, including sailing, water sports, fishing, beachfront lounging, and much more! The splendid scenery does much to relax you. Explore the lake by way of a charter boat that will take you to one of the lakeside towns. Gisenyi is the most developed, with tranquil accommodations and post-colonial architecture nestled against sandy beaches dotted with swaying palm trees. Pine-covered hills invite guests to visit Kibuye, in the middle of the lakeshore, and Cyangugu, in the south.

Wild Camping Makes Travel Easy

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Wild Camping

Are you planning to go on a safari in Africa? Going wild camping is a memorable safari experience, that you should not miss. Here is everything you need to know about going wild camping;

What is wild camping?

Wild camping means sleeping in a tent in the wild with everything around you wild. Camping in the national parks is most especially the one termed as wild camping because you sleep hearing the lions roaring next to you.

Before you head out to wild camp it is important to do your research and plan your walking routes carefully, check the weather conditions, terrain and ensure you’ve got all the camping gear you need to hike and camp safely.

Many wild campers opt to camp during multi day safaris, pitching up their tents later in the day and cook their dinner early. This gives room for analyzing all the daily activities and planning for tomorrow’s day.

Is wild camping legal On Safari?

The general rule for wild camping is to check whether you can legally camp – or get permission and it is vital to leave no trace.

Before heading to the wilderness to wild camp, it’s important to talk to your travel agency about it and get all the first-hand information before you head out.

Some travel sites in Uganda Kenya and Tanzania like the Bwindi impenetrable national park do not allow camping at whatever cost. There is however camping in Queen Elizabeth national park which is just a few hours’ drive to Bwindi.

In some countries on a Kenya safari you will need a permit for camping in some places. This permit may be for protection as it is a wild life area it may get too wild for you in the night.

Wild camping code: Leave no trace

  • Do not leave a thing when going after: This is the crucial rule of wild camping and ideally you will create minimum impact on your desired area so it still remains natural and wild. Better still, you should leave the site so no one can tell you’ve even been there.
  • Litter: We all know this for a fact they do not litter in the park and in Uganda this call for a heavy fine from 300- 1500 dollars. Ensure you collect all your rubbish and take it with you, Walk the site slowly before leaving to check that nothing is missed.
  • Leave the site as you found it, even the small tinny tent holes are supposed to be filled back with sand, fire damage, litter, and take care not to damage vegetation. When it comes to the toilet duties cover it properly on your departure and let nature take its course on it.
  • Fire: you are allowed to light a fire, because most animals fear it so it will act as a barrier between you and them as well as light for you. Ensure you do so correctly and leave no trace that you were ever there
  • Keep group numbers small: try to minimize disturbing wildlife by camping in a small group and reduce noise and light where possible. In case of a very large group of about 20 persons you can divide into three in different places to keep the noise down.

Stay just the one night or two if you must – animals are very wise for your information if you stay in their place for a very long time they may get used to you or some will even charge to hurt you in no time. To avoid such incidences one night may be the best.

Explore the Amorgos Island

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Amorgos Island

Amorgos is one of the most visited islands in the Cyclades of Greece. This island has a size of about 120 km2 and inhabited by around 1800 people can be found at the east of the Cyclades, next to Dodecanese. Anciently called Minoa, the origins of this city and its population can be found strongly attached to the Cretans who are believed to be the first inhabitants in this island.

The island of Amorgos counts with a very rich and interesting past, and therefore all those who enjoy historic spots would be able to have a great time while visiting it. Many centuries ago, Amorgos was used by the Ionians in order to go from their islands to mainland Greece. Many constructions and elements from such époque can be still observed nowadays since was important in shaping the island’s culture and traditions.

Three of the main and most antique cities in Amorgos can also be still visited nowadays. These three cities are Militos, Efessos, and Alikarnasos and also are strongly attached to the époque in which the Ionians used to go through this island in order to reach mainland Greece in such a way that each one of them can tell a bit of the history of those days. These three cities count with the peculiarity of being autonomous although they share a same currency and have many other aspects in common as well.

The city of Arkesini, one of the main spots in Amorgos, contains several appealing and unique characteristics. One of these interesting characteristics tourists could find in Arkesini is the antique walls that surround it and which were part of many important historical events.

It is also interesting to know that the island of Amorgos has received many different names throughout its history, and still, nowadays, it receives a variety of denominations. Among the names tourists could find Amorgos is called nowadays, there is the name of Pagali, Psichia, Patagy, Yperia, and Karkisia. This way, tourists should not be surprised or confused when they hear, read or see any of those names in reference to the town of Amorgos.

Best Places to Visit in Florida

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Florida

Planning to travel to Florida? Wondering about the best places to visit in Florida? Here are some of the must visit destinations that you should not miss.

Seaworld Orlando

In Orlando there are many different attractions to choose from and one of the more popular ones is SeaWorld. It has a mix of them park type rides as well as animal and fish shows and so is appealing to many people.

If you are visiting when it is hot, then it can be a good idea to go to the Shamu stadium because the first twenty rows are known as the soak zone and you will get splashed with cooling water as the killer whales perform for the crowd. For fun with dolphins, the Dolphin Cove will give you the opportunity to feed them as well as watch them, if you would rather not get that close. It can be good ideas to take a waterproof camera with you though as there are so many ‘wet’ events and you want to be able to capture them all on film. You certainly do not want to risk ruining your camera.

If you want a quiet retreat for a while, away form the noisy rides then there is an area near the Clydesdale Hamlet which has a beer school where you can sample some brews. This is especially good if you have left your children behind on the thrilling rides.

If you do not like queuing, then it can be a good idea to find out when all the main animal shows are on. The day’s events are all listed on a map provided when you enter the park with all the times of the attractions. These shows will be busy and popular and will mean that other areas will be quieter and so it can be a good time to queue for food or drink as you will not be waiting for so long. There is a large selection of restaurants and kiosks selling food for all budgets and tastes.

If you are with children, there are opportunities to learn things about the animals all over the park. There are interactive stations which make things fun for them and they will learn things without even realising it.

So if you are visiting Orlando SeaWorld, make sure that you take notice of these tips so that you can have the most enjoyable trip possible.

Magic World

The Magic Kingdom is part of Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. It is full of fun and there are seven main areas to see, Main Street USA, Fantasy Land, Adventure Land, Mickey’s Toontown Fair, Liberty Square, Tomorrow Land and Frontier Land.

The park was started in 1967 and was a project that Walt Disney had been planning but he died before work started on it. It was built very much based on the California Disneyland but bigger and improved. It was built over tunnels which meant that cast members could move around the park without being seen by guests. They were actually built above the ground, because of the location being prone to flooding and so the whole park is a storey up in the air. They raised the ground using the soil that was dug out of the Seven Seas Lagoon. It opened in 1971 and has 23 attractions then, twenty which were copies of rides at Disneyland and three new ones. There were six themed lands, five copies and a new one called Liberty Square.

Disney Land Park was often called Magic Kingdom until Walt Disney Resort was built. The Magic Kingdom is referred to as The Most Magical Place on Earth. It was called Magic Kingdom in 1994 to stop it being confused with Disneyland.

Guests will be able to take a tram from the parking area to the ticket area and then they can get transport to whichever parts of the park they want to visit. To get to magic Kingdom they can take the monorail or ferryboat and buses can go to other places. There is lots to see and so it is important to allow lots of time so that you get your moneys worth.

The Universal Studios

Within Universal Studios there are two parks, Universal Studios and Universal Islands of Adventure. The Islands contain the Wizarding World of Harry Potter which feels like a theme park on its own, without all of the other attractions. There is even the CityWalk which is a great place for night life where there is lots of entertainment to be had such as bars and clubs as well as restaurants and it is a very popular area. There is a great food and live music to be enjoyed at the same time. There are even karaoke events as well as live band performances at cocktail bars.

Universal is one of the famous three theme parks in Orlando, which also include SeaWorld and Disney World. It offers on site accommodation, the hotels are Hard Rock Hotel, Loews Portofino Bay Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort. The hotels cater to different budgets and requirements even though they are all good quality. They have their own individual themes and have many leisure activities to keep guests entertained and whichever you stay at, you can enjoy what the others have to offer.

Both parks are part of the whole Universal experience and you can buy tickets which allow you entry in to either or both for the duration of your stay. Many do worry that staying on site will be too expensive, but it does mean that you will get a great experience and you will get some extra privileges which could make it work out to be great value for money. You will often get a free water taxi from hotel to park and early admission to the park as well as quick queuing.

Both parks have some great things to experience. There are live shows and rides. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is one of the newest additions and is well worth visiting and trying out the Forbidden Journey ride. There are also many rides which can scare you such as the Hollywood Rip Ride Rocket where you choose song to play while you ride and you will be filmed. Then you can watch it back and see yourself going upside down and down vertical drops. There are many exhilarating rides such as Spider Man, The Incredible Hulk, Dragon Challenge and Doctor Doom’s Fearfall. There are also very wet rides such as Popeye and Bluto’s Blige Rat Barges.

The Horror Make Up show is a popular event, where even those not interested in behind the scenes things have fun.

Disney Animal Kingdom

The Animal Kingdom is one of the Disney resorts. It not only has animals on display but information about them and how to protect them. There are safari rides and walking tours where you can see many animals up close and experience an African like safari without having to travel to Kenya. The park does not just have animals though. There are a selection of rides such as rapids and roller coasters which can be fun.

The Dino Land USA has replicas of dinosaurs and fossils and it is educational with information on how the dinosaurs came about. The Rafiki’s Planet Watch area is where guests can find out all about conservation. There are hands on exhibitions as well as information which will help people to understand about the animals in the world and illustrates how much Walt Disney cared about the planet.

There are also some great shows. With the musical of Finding Nemo and The Lion King available to watch, there is certainly no shortage of fun and entertainment, so alongside the seriousness of animal conservation, there is also great thrills and attractions to be experienced too, meaning a great experience for everyone.

Top Uganda Spots for Primate Encounters

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kibale chimpanzee tracking

Uganda is a magnet for primate enthusiasts. Located in the Eastern part of Africa, this prime destination is among the top countries with the highest numbers of primate species in Africa. Its lush habitats include tropical rain forests, montane forests and bamboo forests are one of the reasons for the wide range of primates.

Some of these species are chimpanzees, Golden monkeys, Red-tailed monkeys, black and white Colobus monkeys, baboons, Vervet, blue monkeys to name but a few. Listed below are some of the places to go for primate encounters while on a safari in Uganda;

Kibale Forest National Park

There are other places that inhabit primates in Uganda, but Kibale Forest National Park is referred to as the country’s primate capital. Located in Western Uganda, this Park covers a total area of 560 square kilometers and was declared as a National Park in 1993. The biggest area of Kibale is occupied by the moist evergreen, Savannah grasslands, and semi-deciduous forests.

With its blend of evergreen trees and deciduous around Kanyanchu, Kibale’s vegetation rises up to 55m establishing a semi-closed canopy that protects more than 13 different species of primates. Moreover, Kibale Forest National Park is ranked to harbor the greatest concentration of primates in East Africa. Some of these are Chimpanzees, grey-cheeked Mangabey, Black and White Colobus, Blue monkeys, and Red-tailed monkeys.

The current population in this protected area is approximated to 1000 individuals and part is habituated for tourism in the Kanyanchu area. Actually, chimpanzee tracking is the main reason for most trips arranged to this Park in western Uganda.

Other than primates, this park plays host to over 325 bird species including forest and water birds. This makes it a perfect getaway for those who seek a mix of primate watching and birding. Some of the birds common in Kibale include green breasted pitta, white-bellied crested flycatchers, woodland warbler, and orange tufted sunbird.

Budongo Forest Reserve

Seated atop the Albertine Rift part of the Great Rift Valley, Budongo is simply described as a medium-altitude, semi-deciduous, and moist tropical rain forest. It is part of the Murchison Falls conservation area and covers a total area of 825 square kilometers of which 430 square kilometers is a continuous forest.

This forest was under strict protection by the King of Bunyoro until it was gazetted as a reserve in 1932. Budongo forest is currently one of the protected areas in Uganda that boast rich biodiversity that consists of nine primate species including chimpanzees, 280 butterflies, and 24 species of small mammals.

About 600 individuals of Chimpanzee primates call Budongo home although a small community is habituated for tracking excursions. The community for tracking is composed of 80 individuals and is common most of the days except in the dry season when they tend to move into the forest in search of food.

Other primates that breathe life in the Budongo forest are red-tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, Black and white colobus, grey checked mangabeys, and olive baboons.

Adding to primates, the reserve boasts over 360 birds and 465 plant species including the Mahogany trees that can grow up to 80 meters. Some of the common birds in this protected area are chestnut crowned Eremomera, Dusky long-tailed cuckoo, Black-headed paradise flycatcher and chocolate-backed kingfisher.

Kalinzu Wildlife Reserve

With its large communities of Chimpanzee primates, Kalinzu forest is ranked to be the second-best place to meet with Chimps if not Kibale Forest National Park. It is a great stopover for those who are heading to Queen Elizabeth National Park. You can as well connect to Kalinzu from Queen and the drive takes about 40 minutes.

Over 320 chimps are recorded in the reserve, but only 50 are habituated and fully approved for tracking. The session usually takes about 3-4 hours and includes walks through steep slopes and valleys, therefore physical fitness is highly required. There are two sessions on offer (morning and afternoon sessions).

The morning session starts at 8:00 am and the afternoon session starts at 3:00 pm. Sometimes these chimps are not welcoming to strangers, that’s why a ranger guide is assigned to lead the group of trackers. During the tracking, you are also exposed to other primates and various species of birds.

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Established to provide a home to the rescued and orphaned chimpanzees, Ngamba is a paradise for primate lovers. It is located on an island that is part of the Koome group of Islands.

Ngamba Chimp Sanctuary covers a large part that consists of tropical rainforests, grasslands, and swamps. Since it is located on an island, you can only get there by boat or plane. This notable locality treats visitors with a number of captivating activities such as chimpanzee feeding, caregiving, and bird watching.

Kyambura gorge

With its inviting scenery, the Kyambura gorge is amongst the best places to see Chimpanzees in Uganda. It is home to a plethora of primate species although most travelers visit this area for Chimps. Kyambura gorge is part of Queen and a stunning spot that is rarely anywhere else in Uganda.

It was established mainly to act as a buffer zone for animals that come to the gorge for water in the dry season. Chimpanzees in this area tend to hide and a deep walk into the forest reveals more of other wildlife species that inhabit the gorge. Some of these species are birds, primates like baboons, vervet, blue monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, and more.

5 Quick Tips to Get the Best out of a Gorilla Trek

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Bwindi Forest Gorilla

Mountain gorillas are one of the most interesting primates to watch in their natural habitats as you interact with them by observing them do their social antics, learn about them and also enjoy and take pictures of them. With their unique social antics that are almost similar to human beings, it is why gorilla trekking has become so popular in the world as people come to Uganda or Rwanda to meet their closest cousins in the animal kingdom. There are only three countries where you can encounter the mountain gorillas that is Uganda, Rwanda, and Congo but Uganda and Rwanda bring out the best gorilla trek experience as each differs from the other as for Uganda it is more adventurous and explorative and for Rwanda, it gives ease to trek the gorillas.  However, like any other wildlife safari you have to prepare to get the best out of the gorilla trekking safari in Uganda and Rwanda;

  1. Dress up clothes that cover your body properly

Put in mind that during gorilla trekking you walk through the bush and forested jungles of Bwindi national park or volcanoes national park where you encounter thorns, nettles, protruding branches on the walking trails, insects, and pesky that can cause skin damages. You have to put on headgears, long pants, carry gloves, jackets, and sweaters, and also ornaments for insect bites.

2. Prepare your body and mental for the trek

Gorilla trekking takes a lot of time as you hike the forested jungles searching for the gorillas and this normally takes 2-8 hours. It is really a very physical and challenging activity. So you have to be fit and also have the good mental strength that you can walk for long distances and hours. However, when you reach the gorillas, you can never think of the distance you have come because the moment with the gorilla is very tremendous.

3. Carry all the essential tools

There are important things, the gorilla tracker is supposed to have like sunscreens, a waterproof bag, a camera, walking sticks, and drinking water, and some edibles and insect repellents. This equipment is of serious help while in the jungle trekking the gorillas.

4. Get the ideal time to trek the gorilla

In Uganda and Rwanda, there are two weather seasons i.e. dry and wet seasons throughout the year. Gorilla trekking is carried out in both seasons. However, there are people who find it hard to trek the gorillas in the wet season as it is very challenging as the trails are slippery and there is a lot of mist and frost in the forest. So it is better to choose a dry season where the forest is crystal clear and the trails are in fine form.

5. Make your trip well organized

Making an expedition is very exciting and yields joy but when in an organized matter. To do the latter, look for a tour company in Uganda or Rwanda to make a very organized itinerary of your gorilla safari so that there are no inconveniences like time delays, losing your bearing, and also losing your bearings.

Uganda or Rwanda gorilla safaris are one of the most amazing safari trips in the world as you come close to nature through man’s closest cousins “the gorillas”.

Go Green Ireland

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Go Green Ireland

Ireland is a country of contrasts- it has both brains and beauty. Of course, it is well known for its green landscapes and beautiful villages, where life remains much as it did hundreds of years ago- but there are cities like Dublin and Cork that can compete with major cities of the world.

The locals are friendly in Ireland, and most are well-read and talkative- they’ll be happy to discuss almost anything over a pint. Ireland has a rich art history, but the outdoors is what most people come for- the country has many ruins and almost prehistoric monuments (think of the tombs in the Boyne Valley). It does rain quite a bit in Ireland, but you can duck out of the inclement weather into any one of a number of old fashioned little pubs. Who knows, you may happen upon a sort of impromptu fiddlers and dancers jam session. At the very least, you’ll leave with a few pints of ale and a great chat.

Dublin is Ireland’s capital, and it is the envy of most of Europe. The city of today is full of shops, pubs, and enough fast paced nightlife to satisfy almost anyone. Its culture is storied and wonderful, and although its economy, like so many others, has taken a hit, Ireland is a country that looks only to the future.

Stop by the Guinness Brewery for a tour and taste of the famous brew. Dublin’s Heuston station is conveniently located just five minutes from the Brewery. This is ideal, since you won’t want to drive after your visit. From here, reach all points south and west of the city, including more cities of green, myth and glass.

Get to Gal-way, birthplace of the Claddagh ring, in less than three hours. Waterford, home to the world-famous crystal factory is clearly in your sights in just over two hours. Near Cork, you can’t go home without kissing the Blarney Stone at the castle of the same name. With a little maneuvering (you’ll need to lean out of the castle wall and scale down a bit), the myth goes that upon planting a wet one, you’ll be blessed with a magical eloquence. Whether a bunch of blarney, well, that’s up to you.
Back on the train, peer out your window in search of rainbows and fields of shamrocks. And realize that all of Ireland is a traveler’s pot of gold.

It doesn’t matter if you like to hike through the countryside or shop in a bustling marketplace- Ireland will provide you with the vacation of a lifetime.

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