Category Archives: Vacation Destinations

Top Hawaiian Vacations

It is easy to have lots of questions when you are planning a trip to the Hawaiian Islands. If you are unsure of where to begin, perhaps try doing some island hopping instead of picking a single island to visit.

Regardless of where you travel around Hawaii, there are certain things you will find everywhere: delicious food or “ono grinds” which translates to good eats, amazing beaches, and happy people. Every island has a rich flavor to offer. O’ahu, the capital island offers the North Shore for surfing, a wonderful Buddhist Temple and an overall kinetic energy with hopping night life. Maui is home to hanging loose and relaxing; especially for beach bums.

Ancient Kaua’i offers towering sea cliffs and gorgeous sights. The Big Island of Hawaii is actually the youngest out of the islands. Here you can witness new land being born! Lana’i offers complete resort luxury. Enjoy living life on the rural outskirts of Moloka’i. Here native Hawaiian traditions still run strong. The Aloha State has everything you need for a sunny, sand filled vacation.

Islands At A Glance

1. O’ahu

Best for: Beaches, Museums, Food

Come to O’ahu if you desire multicultural modernism. It is excellent if you wish to explore how ancient Hawaii merges with the West and the East while greeting the 21st century. This small island offers a large city to explore. The majority of the state residents call “The Gathering Place” home. Here, everyone rubs elbows on city sidewalks, on the bus, on country streets and on the beach. There are numerous empty beaches not far from downtown Honolulu’s monuments, art galleries and museums.

Eating on O’ahu is an excellent experience. The Japanese gastropubs or izakaya is delicious. Also try offerings via island style food trucks; ideal when you are on the go. Some of the top chef’s in Hawaii are just waiting to serve up your food!

2. Hawai’i – The Big Island

Best for: Hiking, Culture, Wildlife

Check out the most active volcano on earth called Kilauea. It provides interesting hikes and stunning backgrounds of icy waterfall pools, emerald green amphitheater valleys and both ancient and active lava flows. The dense rain forest can be challenging yet rewarding, along with some of the loftiest summits you may ever discover.

Culture is a participatory event on the Big Island. It is meant to be not only observed but absorbed and experienced. You will be invited to watch fish being caught the traditional Hawaiian way. Dancing a hula and creating leis are just a few of the fun things you can do. Watch out for the night marchers here.

Experience the natural wildlife and watch as sea turtles glide up to a seaweed buffet, Spinner dolphins dance above the ocean and endangered nene cross the road on a regular basis. Humpback whales are the show-stoppers here during the winter months. Don’t forget your camera!

3. Maui

Best for: Beaches, Hiking, Food

Maui is renowned for its sun and surf. The glorious sand offers a beach for every person. If you are seeking a calm snorkeling cave or prefer to enjoy the wind and kite boarding attractions, they are all options. Some of the largest surfing waves on the planet reside here. Simply pack a picnic down on the sand and scan the horizon for whales during the winter.

Superb trails will take you to the most interesting places in Maui. For instance, do you want to see some bamboo forests? How about cascading waterfalls and exciting ridge-tops? There is a cindery volcanic national park that is quite memorable as well. Whether you want some challenging backcountry treks or prefer an easy stroll, Maui has got you covered.

There are numerous chef driven restaurants that are home to bountiful organic gardens. Grass-fed beef from pastures and fresh daily fish are often on the menu. Maui offers the raw ingredients to make mouth-watering regional creations.

4. Lana’i

Best for: Remoteness, History, Beaches

If you prefer a more isolated getaway, Lana’i is the place for you. It offers subtropical pleasure away from the rest of the world. The population is low and inviting. The landscape is serene and begs you to go on adventures to explore its unvisited locations.

For the majority of the 20th century, approximately the entire island supplied the world with pineapples. The crops have long since disappeared; however, the vintage plantation town of Lana’i City still takes center stage.

The main beach in Lana’i is called Hulupo’e Beach. It consists of a long crescent of sand on a bay that is great for snorkeling. It is backed by a spacious and tidy park.

5. Moloka’i

Best for: Culture, Adventure, History

Over fifty percent of the residents on Moloka’i have an indigenous heritage, making it the Most Hawaiian Island. Local people consistently favor preservation of the culture and the land over a variety of schemes that would attract more tourists. The aloha spirit is alive and well here and visitors enjoy the genuine atmosphere as opposed to the welcome that money can buy.

A young priest, known as Saint Damien travelled to the Kalaupapa Peninsula in 1873, a remote location on the island. He travelled there to take care of leprosy patients and became the first saint of America. Nowadays, this amazing peninsula is home to a national park and considered to be one of the top adventure centers in Hawaii.

The highest sea cliffs in the world are home to hidden waterfalls and delightfully misty rain forests. The wild adventure offered by the deserted beaches beckon to be explored and enjoyed.

6. Kaua’i

Best for: Beaches, Hiking, Food

The island of Kaua’i is home to many people who simply came for a visit and decided to stay. The closest traffic light is over 20 miles away. The laid back vibe penetrates the North Shore life. Predominant pass times include: hiking, and surfing. The sunniest location on the island is Po’ipu. It resembles a tropical version of summer camp. On the South Shore, the majority of days offer a plethora of activities.

Cliffs and canyons dominate the rugged terrain located on the Garden Island. There are sheer coastal cliffs and gaping chasms that offer distinguished green flora. This is also considered to be the wettest location on earth and therefore, is often shrouded in cloud cover. It is an extraordinary example of a dramatic landscape and ideal for taking many memorable pictures.

Island Hopping

With so much to offer, it is easy to see why many travellers wish to island hop and make the most of their visit to the Hawaiian Islands. Be sure to budget accordingly so that you can take time to sight see and relax in between your flights.

Top Vacations in the US Part 2

Excited for your next vacation to the United States next year? It is a massive country and deciding where to visit can be tricky. The good news is that travel experts enjoy providing you with the basics so that you can determine what will work best for you and your family.

6. Kansas City, MO

There are more than 200 fountains within Kansas City, making it actually on par with Rome! Inviting people combined with wide open spaces enable you to relax and enjoy. There are more than 100 bar-b-que joints within the city to feast upon. The vibrant blues and jazz scenes serve as an anchor for an excellent African American community.

There are numerous walking neighborhoods to explore that offer intriguing history and excellent photo opportunities. For instance, the 1920s shopping district can be taken in via Country Club Plaza to the alluring locally owned bars and restaurants in Westport. The Crossroads Arts District is another fun place to see and explore.

Many World War I history lovers will find Kansas City particularly appealing. It is home to the National WWI Museum. Major events and celebrations will take place due to the fact that 2014 marks the war’s centennial. As well, the adjacent Liberty Memorial in the museum is receiving $5 million dollars for this year’s festivities.

7. Cumberland Island, GA

Cumberland Island is considered to be one of the most magical yet underdeveloped places in the USA. There are feral horses, tiny Fiddler Crabs, virgin beaches and windswept dunes. Check out the mossy old oak trees, gorgeous butterflies, skittish armadillos and amazing sunrises.

The majority of the Sea Islands in terms of continuously exposed land are comprised of this national seashore and its unspoiled paradise. There are approximately 18 miles of pristine sandy beach on the ocean side and you will be able to enjoy this all on your own. The remainder of the island is covered with dense maritime marsh, green forest, tidal creeks and mudflats. You can explore the ruins of the Dungeness Mansion which was once owned by the Carnegies. There are numerous hiking trails to explore, over 50 miles of them. Backcountry camping is a great option for more adventurous souls.

Another getaway to explore is St. Mary’s island. This is where the mainland facilities are located along with the ferry terminal. Some of the best sands in the South, without taking Florida into consideration are located at Stafford Beach. For non-campers, try staying at the extravagant old Greyfield Inn, home to the only restaurant on the island.

8. Las Vegas, NV

For 24 hour night life and entertainment, look no further. The city is shifting its focus away from gambling and trying to draw in more lower-rolling tourists in 2014. According to statistics, the per-person gaming revenue has dropped approximately thirty percent since 2006.

Check out the Arts District and Fremont East near downtown. These neighborhoods are lively and entertaining. Locals come here to eat and drink at the happening new galleries, café’s and bars. The Burlesque Hall of Fame is also nearby to enable travelers a perfect reason to venture off of the Strip. For those who want to explore the Strip, the High Roller, the tallest observation wheel in the world is an ideal place to start. It is part of the new LINQ district from Caesars’ a 550 million dollar venture expected to start up in the middle of 2014.

Explore the Indoor Skydiving or go-karting at Fast Lap. Check out Flightlinez for a zip lining adventure. There are numerous high-octane thrills to enjoy for those who need a break from the Blackjack table.

9. Sun Valley, ID

If you are seeking out an alternative to the ritzy resort areas of Colorado, particularly in the summer months when visitor numbers and costs are down, consider Sun Valley. There are great cultural events and mountain biking, camping, delicious food and hiking to take into consideration. During the winter months, check out the top of the line skiing facilities that can be discovered at the first purpose-built ski resort in the USA. Take the lifts with the rich and famous Hollywood A-listers to enjoy gorgeous scenery in a refined place without sprawling condos and fast food joints. No lift lines or crowds make it possible for you to ski and enjoy your day more.

The location itself is stunning, and as impressive as the snow. Visit nearby Ketchum which retains its rustic glory and authenticity regardless of the seasonal influxes. Stanley is situated a bit farther down the way. This is considered by many to be the most scenic town in the USA. It is nestled in the crook of the Salmon River. This location makes it an ideal place to launch a raft. The gorgeous Sawtooth Mountains provide a dramatic background and viewing point for wildlife.

Interestingly enough, Ernest Hemingway is also buried here. He had a huge draw and affection for Sun Valley. Allegedly, he completed “For Whom the Bell Tolls in room 206 of the Sun Valley Lodge between exploring the area on hunting and fishing excursions with friends Clark Gable and Gary Cooper.

10. Lana‘i, Hawaii

If you wish to flock to empty paradise beaches, diving and snorkeling options, and petroglyphs and shipwreck adventures, this unique island will not disappoint! Home to red-dirt roads, otherworldly rock formations and the favorite local dish of raw fish salad or poke markets, Lana’i is truly an exciting place to visit. Numerous 4WD trails and rugged hiking ensure that outdoor enthusiasts will be having a blast. This tiny town center offers small island charm with its candy coloured plantation style homes.

Lana’i is the smallest of the habitable Hawaiian Islands. It offers a mix of Asian and Hawaiian cultures, rugged shorelines, trendy resorts and relaxing getaways. In 2012, Oracle multi-billionaire, Larry Ellison purchased 98% of the island! He has major plans for the island. For example, bringing in numerous high end resorts and practically doubling the population.

Of course these high ideals leave some worried that Lana’i is on its way to becoming a playground for the wealthy; however, Mr. Ellison feels as though these changes will make it a “laboratory for sustainability” and wants to ensure that there will still be parts accessible to budget minded travelers. There will potentially be day trip excursions available from Maui. Many feel that this is an excellent idea, however, it remains to be seen if all will go according to plan.

The Blue Ginger Café, on the other hand, places all of their attention into the food and not into the décor. Stop in for breakfast and try their delicious muffins fresh from the oven. Or grab some food off the menu and head for a beach picnic!

Top Vacations in the US Part 1

Thinking of planning a vacation in the USA next year? Are you unsure of where to see and what to explore? This is understandable considering the vast size of the country. Luckily, travel experts devote their time and energy summarizing the best places to help make your decision easier.

Some of the global must-see places covered in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2014 include: Texas and Chicago; however there are more options available when one digs a little deeper. Keep the following on your travel radar. Regardless of whether you are into wineries and beer making, want to explore local and national history, simply want to veg on a beach or are an avid nature lover, there are an abundance of options available.

1. Grand Rapids & Lake Michigan’s Gold Coast

Those who love art, beer and the beach are all apt to agree on this location. Michigan’s 2nd largest city, Grand Rapids, proudly offers something for everyone. The National Beer Examiner Blog voted it the best beer city for 2012 and 2013. Since then, its beer tourism has reached an all-time high. There are more than 25 craft breweries in the area. During February, take in excellent events such as the Winter Beer Festival and Cool Brews Hot Eats. If you are there in August, be sure to check out the Summer Craft Beer Festival. All of these events keep the city festive on an annual basis.

The secret about Grand Rapids’ is the amazing art scene coming to light. Worthy to explore is the Frederik Meijer Gardens, offering their Rodin sculptures and impressive blooms. A fun day trip to check out is the Grand Rapids Art Museum which is refreshing to visit in its cool LEED Gold certified building. ArtPrize, the world’s largest art competition is also here with over 1700 creative masterpiece displays.

The Gold Coast of Lake Michigan is a mere 30 miles away. It may be considered the most unexpected beach getaway in the USA. Some argue that these shores rival Southern California’s and those of Hawaii. There are approximately 300 miles of seemingly endless beaches to explore. Check out the wineries, sugar-white dunes, U-pick orchards, antique stores, Hemingway haunts, berry farms and cider houses. If surfing is more your style, you can enjoy that as well. If you never thought the Midwest had much to offer in terms of vacation, think again! You can enjoy a Cape-Cod style beach vacation here instead!

One of the top pick alehouses to explore is rock-n-roll Founders Brewing Company. The lake’s Oval Beach takes first place for those searching for the smoothest sandy beach.

2. Yosemite National Park, CA

This world renowned national park suffered from a temporary closure due to a government shutdown in 2013. To many people’s relief, the thunderous waterfalls, majestic mountain peaks and sub-alpine meadows are welcoming visitors once again. The monolithic Half Dome and El Capitan provide excellent viewpoints. Consider climbing up to Yosemite Falls, the tallest in North America and visiting Inspiration Point. Here, the air grows thin as do the crowds. You can penetrate the gorgeous back country and plan a hike for months.

During the summer of 2014, the gateway communities and the park will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Yosemite Grant. This was signed as a precursor to the modern National Park System by President Lincoln! This was the first time in USA history that the federal government set aside a portion of land solely for preservation by and for the people; making it a truly monumental milestone achievement.

3. Boston, MA

The 100th Annual USA Figure Skating Championships were hosted here in January 2014, right after another monumental Red Sox World Series win. These skating championships determine where the US Winter Olympics team will be. Visiting during the spring, you can be a spectator of the Boston Marathon and enjoy being among international sports enthusiasts. Even though the horrific bombings of 2013 were feared to potentially determine entrants from the 2014 race, this will be the 2nd largest Boston Marathon ever. Over 36,000 runners are taking to the course.

Summer arrives with the usual festivities that operate in full swing. All kinds of festivals take root from overflowing restaurant patios, abundant beer gardens and a thriving entertainment and arts scene. Bostonians and visitors alike are content with so many activities to keep them busy. The humidity gives way to a vibrant and impressive autumn display.

The past is very much alive here thanks to the Freedom Trail, where you can follow in the footsteps of America’s revolutionary founders. At the Bell in Hand Tavern, the oldest in the USA, visitors can enjoy some rich history. Omni Parker House is a favorite place to stay. This ancient hotel overlooks the Freedom Trail. Distinguished guests such as Ho Chi Minh, Malcolm X, JFK and Charles Dickens among others have visited here.

4. Central Coast, CA

The Central Coast often has a reputation of being dismissed as a flyover country between Los Angeles and San Francisco; however, it is a destination in its own right. This surreally scenic stretch of the Pacific Coast offers the best of California. Home to Hwy 1, one of the most iconic sea-travelling roadways in the USA, this laid back beach town features amazing wildlife such as sea lion colonies, cliff-top lookouts, and hidden coves. The Hearst Castle and numerous Spanish missions are fun to explore even during foggy weather. There are no crowds and great photo opportunities.

Take an inland trip to Paso Robles wine country, an up and coming spot for scenery rivaling Sonoma and Napa. Head back to the coast after taking in the raw beauty and coastal energy of the 100 mile stretch of the craggy Big Sur coastline. Take in the eco-conscious Monterey Bay Aquarium and its world renowned set up. They recently celebrate their 30th birthday in 2014. Be sure to purchase tickets in advance and arrive at opening time in order to beat the crowds. Bring your camera and experience an out of this world jellyfish exhibit.

Explore the numerous farmers markets that dot the coast line. For instance, San Luis Obispo’s transforms to a complete street festival every Thursday night, while Santa Barbara’s takes place on Saturday mornings and Tuesday afternoons.

Great Mexican Vacation Destinations

1. Mexico City

Mexico City is considered by many to be the most intriguing city with the world. This greatly misunderstood capital has a crime rate approximately a third of the size of Washington, DC and a population of more than 21 million people. For the bi-centennial celebrations, the city underwent an intensive scrub. Certain places such as the mariachi-filed Plaza Garibaldi are considered safe enough, similar to Times Square in New York. This particular plaza has earned a reputation of transforming into a “Disney Version” of its former self.

Numerous colonial buildings show fresh details that were formerly disguised by years of build-up and pollution. This ancient city has been built over a lake that has been filled in which contains pyramids, Aztec canals, hipster dining, the old studio of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera and exquisite dining offered by Polanco and Condesa.

2. Merida

Located 4 hours inland from Cancun, this city offers a glimpse of authentic Mexico. It is a colonial city that is the proud home of 750,000 locals. It is situated within distance of several days of excellent daytrips. It has become an interesting destination in its own right and is not simply an under rated add-on. Merida is most fun on the weekends, due to the historical core of the city closing to vehicles and unleashing much life with taco stands, open-air stages and excellent sights to see, hear, smell and taste. The 17th century cathedrals are made from Mayan bricks and offer gorgeous photo opportunities.

An easy day trip is the Ruta Puuc; simple to access with a DIY bus loop of Uxmal along with 4 other interesting Mayan cities. Another fun option is touring the flamingo-filled mangroves in Celestun, a fun little fishing village to explore.

3. Todos Santos

Todos Santos is an excellent option for your next vacation to the Baja. There are always people who express things are not what they used to be, especially since there are as many Americans as Mexicanos there due to its rise in popularity; however, it still beats the condos of Cabo San Lucas. Baja Sur provides a laid back peaceful and restful vibe. This city is situated only a couple of hours from the La Paz or Cabo airports. It offers excellent surfing beaches and is a gorgeous mountain-backed artist community.

4. San Miguel de Allende

This city makes excellent choice for the safety oriented. There are numerous American ex-patriots who visit these silver towns located in the central highlands north of Mexico City, situated approximately 2 hours from the Leon Airport. This lovely town is a far cry from any drug violence. The actual town can be seen in Once Upon a Time in Mexico, by Robert Rodriguez. Since 2008, it has been deemed a World Heritage site. There are approximately 62,000 residents in the town and an abundance of 17th century cathedrals, luxury guest-houses, botanic gardens, organic farmer restaurants and a variety of handicraft shops.

5. Huatulco

If you are craving a resort vacation, Huatulco is quite a success story in terms of recent development. This was originally a former fishing village. Lately it has become the Oaxacan beach of choice lately. It benefits from a gentle development plan that keeps the majority of the sandy shoreline completely unspoiled. The entire town is less than 6 stories high. Activities can take many days. Day trips can be spent surfing, rafting, snorkeling, kayaking and diving. There are waterfall tours to explore, cycling trips to take and coffee farms to enjoy!

6. Playa Del Carmen

Playa Del Carmen, speaking of resort towns that are considered forward thinking; amends practically every mistake of Zona Hotelera found up the road in the Yucatan Peninsula. Being only one block from the beach, makes it a lovely seaside location. There is also the pedestrian oriented La Quinta or Fifth Avenue. Here it is wise to keep track of your belongings after hours. Lined with night-clubs, take away taco stands and many souvenir options, this touristy attraction is fun for shopping and sand excursions. If you want to take a day trip to Cozumel Island, you can experience the best snorkeling that the world has to offer.

7. Guanajuato

This amazing hillside town is home to 16th century cathedrals and lovely colored homes on plazas lined with laurel trees and gorgeous alleyways. Best to take into consideration the Festival Cervantino which is an annual event filled with mariachis, Mexico City punk bands, orchestras, modern art, Moroccan Folk music and a series of additional cultural extravaganzas. The majority of these festivals are offered for free. It is an excellent hub to visit any time of year; offering a real mummy museum and a laid back colonial lifestyle. A great option is to combine this trip with an excursion to nearby San Miguel de Allende.

8. Puebla

Puebla offers a glimpse of being a smaller version of Mexico City. There are approximately 1.5 million residents who call this city home. It is jam packed with fun things to see such as numerous cathedrals and a museum devoted to ancient artifacts. It is quite laid back and more manageable than it may seem given its size. Staying in the historic center is your best option. There are buildings flamboyantly decorated with painted tiles or azuelos and a variety of spots to sample the Arabic taco, a local cuisine. This specialty taco is comprised of marinated pork and served on Middle Eastern style flat bread.

Islands that comprise the Caribbean

There are so many islands that comprise the Caribbean; it is truly a magical place to visit. For example, vibrating Jamaica has little in common with Aruba. Islands that are close together such as Nevis and St. Kitts can be worlds apart. The experiences and uniqueness of each island leave much to explore.

How does the Caribbean-bound traveller decide where to go with so many diverse options? Many considerations can be taken into account. Deciding what kind of vacation you prefer may seem like a perplexing chore instead of planning a carefree getaway. However, the more time you research and inquire ahead of time, the chances are you will enjoy your trip much more. The following offers a brief description to help you narrow down your sights.


A ribbon of beaches lined with world class resort facilities is the main attraction of this island. The landscape is quite arid and practically featureless. There are numerous malls that offer familiar bars and eateries. It is a good choice for a shopping holiday or when you want to stay on the resort property.

The Bahamas

The Bahamas offers excellent choices for travellers. It is super close to the USA for one thing. There are 700 islands that make up the Bahamas, so tons to see and do. This is a perfect location for divers, and island hoppers. It is ideal for Americans who need a vacation close by.

Cayman Islands

Grand Cayman Island offers less traffic and a more orderly pace than South Florida. It has resorts for everyone available; from famous diving to swimming and snorkeling with the stingrays. This is an ideal location for those who enjoy watersports and fun holidays.


There are all sides to experience in Jamaica. For example, take in the Bob Marley museum and hear rhythmic music or enjoy a fancy resort. Try the local food if you enjoy spicy cuisine. There are some fun natural adventures the entire family will enjoy.

Puerto Rico

The city of Old San Juan is one of the best highlights in the region. It offers sprawling colonial features that come alive. There is tangible history to enjoy, big beach resorts, rich Hispanic culture and casinos. It is a great travel option for those who do not want to leave the USA and wish to explore more than beaches, sand and sea.

St-Martin/Saint Maarten

This very small and vibrant island is home to 2 distinct cultures: the French and Dutch. Similar to a brain, these two hemispheres offer different things. For example, the Dutch like to party and the French provide more reserved holidays. It is best for day trips into the Netherlands, and France. Some say the heart of Creole culture resides here. It is considered to be home to the wildest airport bar on Earth.

St. Kitts

St. Kitts and Nevis offer booming condos and huge hotels. There is enough to fulfill a daytrip around the island which includes checking out the vast pirate-era Brimstone Hill Fortress.

St. Lucia

If you wish for pristine beaches, densely forested hills and gorgeous resorts, there are many enchanting offerings on this island. A perfect destination for nature-lovers, snorkelers, luxury seekers, trekkers, honeymooners and kite-surfers.


An intriguing time capsule of Caribbean culture; Cuba offers political challenges, famous music and urban beauty that is disintegrating yet still charming. Havana is worthy of numerous days of exploration. It is excellent for those who wish to take a reasonably priced holiday in a truly foreign country.

Top Vacations Best of the Caribbean

The Caribbean is a widely visited region thanks to the beautiful waters and copious beaches. It is home to numerous islands, making it a traveller’s paradise. Islands are surrounded by the Caribbean Sea and some border the North Atlantic Ocean as well. This area is situated southeast of the North American mainland, north of South America, east of Central America and is southeast of the Gulf of Mexico.

Found mainly on the Caribbean Plate, there are over 69 larger islands and approximately 650 altogether. Numerous cays, islets, and reefs provide a picturesque shoreline. These islands typically form island arcs which delineate the northern and eastern edges of the Caribbean Sea.

The Caribbean islands consist of the Lesser Antilles on the east and south, which includes the Leeward Antilles and the Greater Antilles on the north. These islands make up part of the somewhat larger West Indies grouping. The Lucayan Archipelago is found within the vicinity, made up of the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Bahamas, situated north of the Caribbean Sea and the Greater Antilles. If looking at the topography from a wider perspective, the mainland countries of Suriname, Guyana and Belize may be included.

Some of the less popular Caribbean Destinations include:


The beaches on this island are quite small and full of luxurious villas scattered around. There is friendly local culture to behold. This island is suited best for those who wish to enjoy an isolated and low key holiday.


This medium sized island is home to numerous little beaches that are flanked with resorts of all kinds. Here, you will find lavish accommodation all the way to modest options. The English Harbour provides a diverse colonial heritage and is an excellent choice for yaught junkies. This holiday is best for resort style living with a few day trips.


Situated right on the edge of the Atlantic, this medium sized island offers excellent beaches for budget sunbathers, surf enthusiasts and wind-surfers. For those who wish to dress up for supper, this welcome island will fulfill your needs. The surroundings are clean and it is common to run into people of English decent. It is a great option for those who feel comfortable in linen suits and enjoy activities.


Many would vote Bonaire to be the most interesting island located in the southern Caribbean region. It is a tiny place that is world renowned for its amazing diving right off shore. There is also some neat history regarding their walkable main city of Kralendijk. It is a dream for budget travelers, and people who like to go scuba diving and exploring.

British Virgin Islands

The less-developed, more isolated and richer version of the US Virgin Islands is home to 40 islands. The main island Tortola offers glam diversions. There are tons of yaught enthusiasts and divers and snorkelers who flock here to explore. Home to numerous sunset cocktail parties and for people who prefer the motion of the ocean.


This island is considered to be medium size. There is a historic and gorgeous harbor to explore, located in the main city of Willemstad. It is a great choice for those who like exploring off the beaten track.


This island may be lower on the plethora of beaches found on other islands; however, it is home to a rain forest and many waterfalls. The peaks and valleys offer exciting vegetation to explore. An awesome choice for trekkers and climbers and those who want to immerse themselves in nature.

Dominican Republic

DR, as it is known by, is a large country with a dominant Hispanic culture. It offers a ton of colonial-era history, and world-class resorts on stunning beaches. The untrammeled inland areas have forbidding peaks that call to adventurous souls.


Nutmeg is fragrant in the air surrounding this tiny ex-British colony that offers on the most interesting capitals in the region: St. Georges. There are rainforest dense hills around the small beaches offering a stunning topography. This kind of holiday is best suited for those who wish to explore gorgeous, natural surroundings.


Relaxed island feel is the groove you will experience when you visit French-accented Guadeloupe. It is the best choice for those seeking some excellent cuisine and who wish to travel and chill in the sand. The tropical nature and carefree atmosphere make it ideal for those who wish to sunbathe topless and enjoy a seafood feast afterwards.


Haiti is in the international headlines on a regular basis. It offers quite the opposite of a care-free holiday. Within the wake of the 2010 earthquake, extra challenges occurred. If you wish to check out the rich African culture, it is an interesting place to visit. However, if you are seeking a care-free holiday, then it is probably not for you. Haiti is best for those who wish to explore and travel more.


Martinique provides a sprawling city to explore in the main town of Fort-de-France. There are numerous beaches on this corner of the Caribbean that are fun for day trips. It is perfect for those who speak French, enjoy isolated beaches and fun nature hikes.

St. Vincent & the Grenadines

A classic Grenadine experience to earn memories of a lifetime is booking rides on fishing boats that frequent between beach-ringed islands. Many people decide to charter their own boat. St. Vincent, the main island, is mostly rainforest and very lush. The small island of Bequia is very laid back. This trip is made for people who don’t have a schedule and who wish to explore and drive and spend time on their boat.


Trinidad takes the limelight away from its neighbor Tobago. This vibrant Caribbean island provides a lively party scene that peaks during one of the greatest Carnival celebrations in the world. Bursting with Creole culture, there is much to see and do. Their annual Carnival party rivals that of Rio.


The tiny companion of Trinidad, Tobago offers everything the larger island lacks: fun in the water, gorgeous nature surroundings and resorts. It is ideal for traditional beach holidays that offer no bird-watching or diving activities planned.

Turks & Caicos

A multitude of tiny little islands with idyllic beaches and beautiful turquoise waters aching to be discovered; nothing is very busy here, even the world renowned diving sites. Beachcombers, boaters, divers and those who want to be mellow on the sand can relax and unwind here.

US Virgin Islands

The US Virgin Islands are the initial Caribbean location for many Americans to travel to. They offer all of the same comforts of home. St. Croix features more cultural attractions and natural attractions, along with St. John, while St. Thomas is very commercial. This is a great option for Americans without passports, those who love nature and staying near a mega-resort.

Top Vacations Ski Resorts

Of course, maxing and relaxing on a white sandy beach is ideal for many vacationers; however, some people prefer the snowy mountains. Avid skiers who enjoy the slopes may have a ski destination as their definition of paradise. Cities all over the world, from Aspen to Zermatt offer a host of world-class ski resorts. The possibilities are practically endless when planning your next downhill adventure. Be sure to pack some hot cocoa and extra layers so that you can enjoy the weather to its fullest!

Aspen, Colorado

If skiing with the rich and famous has you excited, then Aspen is where you want to head. It is comprised of 4 mountains that are not linked. This ski resort located in the beautiful Colorado Mountains accommodates all abilities by offering a variety of terrain suitable for every level of skier.

Aspen Mountain is home to steep bumps and offers a selection of groomed intermediate runs. This mountain is an awesome choice for expert skiers. They have the option of accessing hundreds of acres of terrain off the backside of the mountain. Aspen has a reputation for being one of the top resorts for those who have extra money and therefore, some may find it quite a bit more expensive.

Cortina, Italy

The Cortina Ski Resort in Italy is perhaps where Alberto “La Bomba” Tomba began practicing. The Italian Alps and the city served as the host of the 1956 Olympic Games. Life in Cortina revolves around a street without traffic, similar to that of Zermatt, Switzerland. Cortina happens to be one of the very first ski resort cities and is famous for its style and splendor.

Mont-Tremblant, Quebec

Mont-Tremblant has been a paradise for skiers since 1939. The French Canadian zest for life combines with luxury here. This happens to be the best-known ski resort in Eastern Canada. It holds the prestigious title of being the first resort to open in Canada and the second one within North America. Situated only an hour outside of Montreal, it is an excellent vacation base.

Stowe, Vermont

Stowe offers the largest vertical drop in the vicinity. It is considered to be one of the most picturesque ski resorts around. The New England charm is cozy and welcoming. There are 2 ski areas: Spruce Park and Mount Mansfield. Spruce Peak backs on the terrain of Smugglers’ Notch; making it one of the few American resorts that offer a lift-link to another resort. There are more than 60 restaurants and 90 shops to ensure that visitors do not trek too far away during their visit.

Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France

Chamonix was the proud host in 1924 of the world’s first Winter Olympic Games. It ranks among the elite of contenders searching for the title of the “World’s Most Famous Ski Resort.” Situated at the base of Mont-Blanc, it measures as the second highest peak in Europe and the highest peak in the Alps. The elevation at the top reaches 15,771 feet. Chamonix-Mont-Blanc holds bragging rights for its vertical drop which reaches a whopping 9209 feet. As well, it offers one of the longest runs in the world. Vallee Blanche stretches out to 13. 7miles.

Banff/Lake Louise, Alberta

Found in the heart of Canada’s Banff National Park, Lake Louise offers a gorgeous getaway. It is ranked as one of the most scenic mountain resorts in all of North America; some would argue in the world. There are 3 different ski areas that make up Banff/Lake Louise: Sunshine Village, Mystic Ridge/Mount Norquay and Lake Louise. These ski areas are relatively close only approximately 31 miles apart from each other.

According to the Insider’s Guide to the Best Canadian Skiing, Norquay has been labeled “an unforgiving brute, legendary for its monster moguls and unrelenting vertical.”

Vail, Colorado

Legendary Vail describes itself as “America’s favorite resort.” It is ranked among the top 5 in the worlds all around ski resorts. Being the largest single ski location in the USA, Vail provides approximately 5300 acres of skiable terrain. It is also home to the fastest high-speed detachable quads on one mountain. Vail showcases much more with a variety of museums, dog sledding, art galleries, hockey, ballooning, snowmobiling and many more activities.

Zermatt, Switzerland

The majority rank Zermatt as being the top resort in Switzerland; even though St. Moritz is more popular and the neighboring Gstaad is one of the best-known resorts in the world. The village is extremely peaceful due to its vehicle-free environment. Exceptionally picturesque, Zermatt holds the record for the second biggest lift-served vertical drop. Thanks to its altitude and the snowmakers on the lower slopes, it receives vast snowfalls.

Kitzbuhel, Austria

Even though the title of liveliest ski resort in Europe belongs to St. Anton, Kitzbuhel is crowned Pearl of the Alps. Innsbruck may be home to one of the most beautiful cities since the International Olympic Committee voted they host the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics; however, Kitzbuhel offers the most famous holiday resort within the Austrian Tyrol. This village is over 700 years old! Visitors enjoy the rustic charm of the alpine village. In the winter of 1892, skiing officially began here and has been ongoing since!

Whistler Blackcomb, British Columbia

The best skiing in North America can be found at Whistler Blackcomb. The largest vertical drop is located here. Over 30 years and an investment of $600 million dollars, this charming village provides every item skiers and snowboarders could possibly want: more than 100 restaurants catering to everything from Thai, Mediterranean, Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Greek and French cuisine, tremendous shopping and numerous cafes.

After a long day out in the elements and physically working hard on the mountain, enjoying great food is a must. During the past decade, Whistler consistently was voted by North Americans as being the best North American Ski Resort. It has surpassed many other mountains as a strong contender for the much disputed title of being the Greatest Ski Resort in the world. It is repeatedly ranked by the Japanese as their favorite international destination.

Top Vacations Caribbean Cruise Options

The sun is continually shining from the blue skies above the Caribbean. It reflects off of the mirror glass sea surface. The bright rooftops of the colonial style buildings are abundant and provide fun photo opportunities. These are just some of the reasons the Caribbean is such a fun cruise option. There are white sandy beaches to explore and friendly coastal communities! Along with the themed cruised there are wonderful options to relax and explore!

Port-Specific Cruises

If you prefer to focus on the Caribbean as opposed to spending time on a particular kind of cruise, perhaps taking a voyage based on sailing location and ports-of-call is more your style.

Eastern Caribbean

The destinations of St. Maarten and St. Thomas are excellent components of any Eastern Caribbean cruise. St. Thomas is one of the US Virgin Islands. It used to be a pirate haven back in the day. Currently there are a wide variety of duty free designer shops among the vibrant capital of Charlotte Amalie. Explore the amazing Coral World Ocean Park on the outskirts of the island and lose yourself in the vast selection of natural marine life that calls the island home.

St. Maarten is made up of 2 separate sides. The capital, Philipsburg, is located on the Dutch portion of the island. The French side has the capital city of Marigot. Even though both sides offer phenomenal shopping, many people will state that the Dutch side has the French side beat in terms of night life. There are a wide range of Casinos available. There is a 7 day cruise offered by Princess Caribbean to these popular Eastern Caribbean ports that departs from Fort Lauderdale.

Southern Caribbean

The ABC islands are famous in the Southern Caribbean region. All of these islands are owned by the Dutch. They are: Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Oranjestad is the exciting capital of Aruba. There are sherbet rooftops commemorating the Dutch Golden Age. Arikok Park is a national park on the island that covers approximately 1/5 of the area. Mammals, vibrant sea life and island caves make this an excellent excursion.

The island of Bonnaire has a renowned national park that showcases thousands of flamingos. The capital of Curacao, Willemstad on the other hand, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Along with the lavish Dutch architecture, you can take in the sites of Jewish colonial mansions. Every one of these islands has an abundance of activities to offer and sights to see. Scuba diving is a popular pass time. There is a 10 day cruise offered by the Holland America Line that leaves from Fort Lauderdale to explore these exciting Southern Caribbean ports.

Western Caribbean

The Cayman Islands are considered to be the most popular islands situated in the Western Caribbean. They consist of Cayman Bar, Little Cayman and Grand Cayman. The gourmet restaurants, excellent shopping and up market bars are found in Grand Cayman. There are world class diving facilities offered by every island of this archipelago.

Little Cayman has a tiny population of only 150 people! However, it is home to Bloody Boy Wall which is one of the best diving walls in the world. Additional destinations include Cozumel. Here you can visit Tulum and explore ancient Mayan ruins. There are 7 day cruises offered by Disney cruise lines to visit these Caribbean ports. They leave from Port Canaveral on a regular basis.

Top Vacations Alaskan Cruises

Alaskan cruises, rich with their natural beauty and surrounded by wild nature, are a popular summer travel destination. There are numerous options for complete vacation packages that focus around the amazing features of this state. At one time, this kind of cruise was reserved for the elite, however, nowadays, it is a popular trip made by families, couples and honeymooners. Both first time cruisers and experienced ones enjoy this tour.

When to Take an Alaskan Cruise

Due to the extreme climate of the region, Alaskan cruises are available only during the summer months from May to September. During the winter months, the days are extremely short and therefore, shore excursions are not an option at dusk or night time. As well, there is often intense ice formation along cruise ship routes. Cruises fill up quickly due to the limited cruise season. It is recommended to consult a travel agent in order to make arrangements.

Cruise Length

The majority of Alaskan cruises offer a 7 day itinerary for both southbound and northbound voyages. There is a number of longer cruises provided by certain cruise lines, up to 10 to 14 days for example. These may be available as round trip voyages. Every Alaskan itinerary involves a decent amount of time dedicated to cruising beside fjords, scenic glaciers and majestic bays. Multiple ports of call are on tour so that passengers can experience the cities of Alaska and have time for shopping and shore excursions.

Cruise Line

Typically, embarkation ports are situated in Canada and the northwestern USA along city shorelines. Due to the fact that the voyage is in the USA waters and stopping in American ports of call, Canadian departing passengers need to be aware of customs regulations. They are required to provide proper passport documentation for their journey, similar to air travel. Some of the major embarkation ports for Alaska include:

Vancouver, British Columbia: Canada Place on the downtown waterfront is a popular cruise ship terminal. This is a common departure point for the majority of northbound Alaskan itineraries.

Seattle, WA: Seattle is another poplar departure point for cruises. It is close to Vancouver, BC and offers convenience and peace of mind for those who are uptight about departing from a foreign country.

San Francisco, CA: From this northern Californian city, there are a limited number of longer, luxury cruises available.

Anchorage, AK: According to many sources, Anchorage may be named the departure point for a variety of southbound voyages; however, the true ports are situated in Whittier and Seward. These cities are located south of Anchorage. The nearest airport to the cruises is based in Anchorage; transportation from the cruise port to the airport are usually offered.

Ports of Call for Alaskan Cruises

The amazing natural beauty is the main attraction for many travelling on an Alaskan cruise. It is found simply travelling throughout the region. However, there are numerous interesting ports of call, including:

Ketchikan: Located just north of the Canadian border, Ketchikan offers a host of shopping stores. Within the immediate port vicinity, there are dozens of gift shops, making it a shopper’s paradise. The national monument of the Misty Fjords is a great photo opportunity. Cruise ships have a variety of shore excursions available to view the monument either by sea, air or land.

Juneau: Juneau is the capital city of the state. It provides a vast array of unique attractions for visitors such as the most visited glacier in the world: Mendenhall Glacier situated just on the outskirts of town. There are many cultural attractions and landmarks devoted to Alaska’s economic industries and history as well.

Sitka: Sitka lies just south of Juneau. It is considered to be a quintessential Alaskan town. There is a rich history and variety of cultural venues for interested visitors to take in. Since the town does not have a large dock, there are not as many megaships that visit this port of call. Generally, it is less crowded than most other destinations in Alaska.

Skagway: Along the Lynn Canal, Skagway is situated just north of Juneau. During the 1890s, it was a pivotal departure point for thousands of prospectors searching to strike gold. Nowadays, it is a treasure for cruise passengers. There is a wide variety of attractions to take in; everything from modern golf courses to a genuine ghost town!

Inside Passage: Technically, the Inside Passage is not considered to be a port of call; however, no Alaskan cruise would be complete without this scenic venue. Ships weave between massive glaciers and cruise among the thousands of islands. There are stunning views to behold. It is common for lucky passengers to glimpse whales swimming alongside the boat. This definitely makes the days at sea much different than those experience on voyages to tropical places.

There are a variety of historical and rustic attractions to take in all amongst nature’s profound beauty. Alaskan cruises provide a unique vacation experience and visit several ports of call. Extended stays may be available depending on the itinerary of a ship, in order to accommodate longer and more challenging excursions. For example, there are wildlife quests, glacier hiking, and helicopter tours available. Tourists may be able to photograph natural wildlife such as caribou, moose, bears and more!

The experiences on this cruise vary greatly from tropical vacations that offer sunbathing and snorkeling. Alaskan cruises offer an ideal summer getaway for those seeking adventure. There are numerous cruise lines offering longer voyages so that passengers can enjoy marveling at the wonders of the world. The convenience and comfort of a cruise ship extends the best of both worlds!

Top Vacations Cruise Vacations

The concept of “family vacation” is probably not more traditional than within the USA, as far as nations on earth go. The main reason for this is that it is the only major developed nation where on average, employees receive only 2 weeks of vacation. For example, in Europe, the average is 6 weeks. This tiny amount of time for parents to be away from work translates into an extreme importance for family time together for many people.

Over the past few generations, the concept of family vacations has dramatically changed. For instance, during the 70s, the family would often get into the station wagon and drive somewhere together; perhaps to visit relatives, a beach house or a national park. Once Disneyland and similar destinations became an option, vacations transformed from spending time with family and friends to visiting places that offered attractions and organized events for people of all ages.

The Best Family Vacation

Even though family vacations have somewhat changed, the short amount of time often remains the same. This has led to the goals of American family vacations remaining the same. For example:

Seeing New Places: Visiting interesting and exciting new places is consistently one of the main draws of any vacation. The majority of people like to experience smells, tastes, sights and the culture of places they have never visited before. Travel expands your life experience and enriches your life. By broadening your own perspective, one often experiences more gratitude for what they do have.

Trying New Activities: Trying new activities is exciting and fun; yet depending on your age the activity level can vary. It is common for young people to want to try SCUBA diving, rock climbing, zip-lining and surfing. Elderly people may wish to watch the birds and view wildlife, canoe or leisurely stroll through shops or nature.

Time to Relax: Regardless of your age, relaxation is a vital part of life. If you enjoy catching up with family and friends, watching a good movie or reading a book, there are lots of options available.

Interesting and Delicious Food: Many fond vacation memories revolve around eating a delicious meal together with those who you love. It is even more enjoyable to treat yourself out to a night out where no one has to prepare the food or do the dishes.

A Reasonable Price: Planning your vacation carefully makes all the difference. You may free up more spending money if you plan in advance or take advantage of last minute deals. Researching your location prior to travelling will help you know where to stop and shop ahead of time as well.

Summing Up the Cruise Advantage

If you are trying to see multiple destinations the traditional way, you will find you will be spending copious amounts of time and effort simply following the itinerary. This is especially true in Europe where bus and train schedules are very strict. It is heavy and time consuming work to pack and unpack your luggage daily while you stay in a variety of hotel rooms. When you are travelling, you will be typically stuck in an upright chair that does not enable you to stretch out. Being aware of where your belongings are at all times is also exhausting. Since you have to pay for every meal separately, it can be tricky to find quality food at reasonable prices.

Being on a cruise takes care of so many things! You have your stateroom as your base for the entire voyage. There is no packing your luggage around from place to place. With copious entertainment and activity choices, which are included in the cruise fare, you can be as busy or relaxed as you choose. Once you are onboard, the main budget issue you will have to deal with is alcoholic beverages and any add-on packages you want to do. You will not have to worry about exchanging money for travel or the expenses for basic room and food.

Cruise ships have something to offer for everyone in the family and for every age group. Kids are able to attend supervised activities so that parents can enjoy some alone time. There is also babysitting available in your stateroom if you want to dance the night away while the kids sleep. If anyone in your group does not feel like participating in a particular activity, you can rest assured they will be safe.

For the convenience of travelling together, all your food, non-alcoholic drinks and many activities, the cruise really gives you excellent options at a value price. If you can avoid flying and actually drive to the disembarking point, you will be able to save even more money.