The Quintessential Guide To Wildlife Viewing On The Alaska Highway

There are not many places in the world that rival the beauty and natural wonders of the Alaska Highway. This is why it’s no surprise that travelers from around the world flock to the north to take a road trip on this famous highway.

The attraction of driving to Alaska is not only the scenic landscapes but the incredible wildlife the visitors are almost guaranteed to spot on their journey.

The Alaska Highway is home to some of the most unique wildlife in the world and the best part is, you probably won’t even need to leave your vehicle to see it. The wide, lush areas along the road attract elk, buffalo, bear and many more.

So what kind of animals will you see while driving to Alaska?

– Black bears. These massive creatures weigh up to 330 lbs. and they can live up to 33 years. Watch for them grazing on the side of the road in grassy areas.

– Mountain goats. These animals are typically shy but you can’t deny their beauty with such bright, white coats. Look for them in mountainous areas with steep rocky cliffs.

– Grizzly bears. Female grizzly bears could weigh up to 450 lbs. while the giant males can reach up to 1,000 lbs. These majestic creatures are rare to see on the side of the road, but it’s not unheard of.

– Moose. The famous moose of Alaska can reach 7 feet tall and weigh up to a massive 1,800 lbs. In the spring-time it is common to see Moose in the ponds and wetlands near the highway with their young.

– Caribou. Also known as the reindeer of North America, the caribou are famous for their long migrations across the Alaska plains.

– Elk. Considered one of the largest terrestrial mammals in North America, the elk is part of the deer family and can grow impressively wide antlers.

These animals are just some of the many species that you’ll get to view while driving the Alaska Highway. But to make sure that you enjoy the wildlife, while staying safe, here are some simple tips that you should follow:

– Never, ever go near large mammals. Elks, moose, bison and bears in the Alaska Highway may be used to people, but they can still illicit a defensive response when startled or when they feel under threat. Never go near these animals to avoid an attack.

– Stay in your car when viewing wildlife and don’t make any noise. Animals don’t like noise or sudden movements because they usually feel threatened by them.

– Always be vigilant with your surroundings to avoid being attacked by an animal. When out in the open, make noise and always keep an eye out behind you.

– Finally, be sure never to end up between a mother and her young. This is the most dangerous place to be and may illicit an attack.

Of course, you can’t forget about taking the best photographs. It’s dangerous to get to close, so look at getting a telephoto lens for your digital camera, if you’re not just using your phone!

Categories: Holiday & Travel

Essential Dos And Don’ts When Travelling To Germany

Prominent for being one of the worlds largest producers of cars and machines, Germany offers travelers a one-of-a-kind experience with its rich culture and history. It never fails to captivate the hearts of tourists with its old and preserved timbered houses, Baroque buildings, beautiful castles, and of course, German beer. As with any other country in the world, Germany has its own set of decorum and customs.

While these can vary in every German city or state, there are some etiquettes which are considered standard all over the country. Upholding German values and customs is very important for the locals, as non-compliance from tourists may not only raise eyebrows and head shakes but also earn you a harsh reprimand from straightforward Germans. If you are planning to visit this charming European land of Bier and Wurst, its normal to get a culture shock, but being prepared and keeping in mind the following dos and donts will earn you respect from the Germans.

Do bring enough cash

This may sound funny, but despite Germany being an efficient first-world country, locals are still cash-intensive people. A survey revealed that Germans feel that paying by cash makes it simpler for them to monitor their spendings. There are even some restaurants and establishments that dont accept credit card payment. So make sure you always have Euros on hand to prevent any inconvenience when paying.

Do buy and stamp your ticket when riding public transportation

This is especially true for tourists. Due to the absence of a ticket seller or inspector, some might be excited at the prospect of saving some Euros and be tempted to ride the U-Bahn (underground train) and other public transport for free. This is a big no-no and could get you in trouble. Ticket inspectors are always around, wearing plain clothes. They will randomly ask people to show their tickets, and those who are not able to provide a valid one will have to pay huge fines.
 

Do try the wide variety of German bread and beer
 

Considered as a staple food of the country and a big part of the German culture, Germany produces more than 300 types of bread in all shapes and sizes, freshly baked every day. Its only appropriate to try a few of the many types of bread and learn why the Krauts love their Brot so much. As with beer, Germany has about 1,300 various breweries which manufacture over 5,000 different beer brands. Keep it on your list to try a few of them, including Kölsch beer, Altbier, Helles, and Weißbier. A trip to Germany is not complete without drinking one of their best-exported products.

Don’t travel to Germany without pet papers

If you plan on visiting this mighty country with a do, please pay attention to the rules and regulations regarding travelling with pets. Canine visitors must have the necessary papers otherwise they will not be permitted into the country. It is well advised to read tips on dog travel before you embark on a journey to Germany – or any other country in the world for that matter.

Dont walk in the bicycle lane. EVER.

Germans like things to be in order. As a testament to that, they have specific lanes for bicycles and for pedestrians. Do not be surprised if you receive an unfriendly or even aggressive response (including some shouting/cursing coupled with the ringing of their bicycle bells) when cyclists find that youre walking on the bicycle lane. So dont forget to always keep to the pedestrians path.

Dont throw your plastic/glass bottles & aluminum cans anywhere

As part of their efficient recycling system, Germans have put a deposit of 0.25 for most plastic/glass bottles & aluminum cans on top of its price. You can claim back the money at any supermarket when you return the bottles or cans, which can be a lot depending on the number of bottles you have. Most locals will frown at (or even scold) you if you throw the bottle or can in the rubbish bin instead of returning it where it belongs.

Dont make the Nazi salute just for fun

Because of the countrys dark history, Germans are quite sensitive and careful when it comes to discussions about Hitler and the Nazi era. As such, locals are not so keen on talking about it in public (unless you have a very close German friend), more so making the Nazi salute. It is considered an offense in Germany. Doing so could get you reported to the police and land you behind bars. So yes, it is a serious thing.

Although these are not the only customs and etiquettes you have to observe during your visit to Germany, following these standard rules will guarantee that you will avoid committing cultural blunders in Deutschland.

Categories: Holiday & Travel

Ideas For Your Caribbean St Vincent And The Grenadines Yacht Charter Holiday

St Vincent And the Grenadines are covered in lush green mountains and the coast is made of beautifully pristine beaches where the sea washes against them. When you take a St Vincent and Grenadines yacht charter offers tourists the chance to check out locations used in the making of the Pirates of The Caribbean. If you are looking for a secluded place for a peaceful break, these islands are ideal. Below, we will look at just some of the reasons why this destination is so popular for Caribbean yacht charter holidays.

There is a wide range of different types of yacht charter available that you can choose from for your St Vincent and the Grenadines yacht charter holiday. Depending on what type of holiday you are looking for you might choose from the following selection of boats:

Catamarans
Mono-hull
Luxury crewed yachts
Skippered yachts
Bare-boat yachts
Motor yachts
Sail yachts

Thanks to the powerful winds around the area of the islands, it is the perfect place to take a yacht charter holiday. Even during the summer, there are prevailing 10 to 20 knot wins coming from the south-east, while the winter sees more challenging north-eastern winds of speeds as much as 20-25 knots. There is always a possibility of hurricanes from July to October, even though it is below the belt. The high temperatures are one of the most attractive aspects of this area, with them reaching as high as 30 degrees during the above period.

Numerous yacht charters set off from the Lagoon Hotel and Marina that sits on St Vincent’s southern tip. You can spend some time buying provisions at the supermarket and enjoy a dip in the on-site swimming pool before boarding your yacht. A well-positioned and protected anchorage, sailing begins southwards to Grenadines and there are chances for various land trips at various points around St Vincent.

Depending on the experience you want from your yacht charter holiday, there are lots of other islands in the area to check out. Bequia, for instance, is around nine miles south of St Vincent and has conditions for some of the best Caribbean sailing. Bequia has a rich whaling, fishing and boat-building history and Port Elizabeth is its main port. This is lined with local craft shops, restaurants and bars. It is extremely popular thanks to the crystal clear waters.

However, if you are looking for an extremely romantic destination for your Caribbean getaway, then Mayreau to the west of Tobago Cays is ideal. There is no electricity, cars, roads or other trappings of modern life and the noises they produce. It is essentially one of the last easily accessed tropical paradises that is unspoiled. Follow some of the popular hiking trails to experience some of the most breathtaking views of the Grenadines.

Above we have tried to share with you some of the best places you can visit, but there are still many more. A Caribbean yacht charter holiday in St Vincent and the Grenadines can be anything you want it to be.

Categories: Holiday & Travel

Discover Kawah Putih, One Of Indonesias Hidden Treasures

When one talks of Indonesia, youre essentially conjuring images of more than 17,000 islands stretching all the way from the western shores of the Malayan Peninsula to the northern edges of Australia with each region boasting of many fantastic places to see, amazing cultures to experience, and mouth-watering foods to feast on. But smack in the heart of the archipelago is an attraction that only those in the know and those with a very resistant sense of smell would dare venture. Kawah Putih or white crater is a tourist spot like no other.

This is not your standard travel destination and requires a lot of effort to visit. But those who make the tough journey will be rewarded with something truly unique and unlike any holiday destinations you’d visit at home. Consider this as your simplified guide to this hidden gem in the heart of Indonesia.

Kawah Putih is a very picturesque crater lake, often changing its color from sky blue to whitish green. In some instances, the water can also turn into a brownish hue. The changing color of the water is due in part to the concentration of sulphur sourced from the andesitic volcano that Kawah Putih considers home, Mount Patuha. The temperature of the water or its state of oxidation can also play a role in the changing color of the water. As such, going there today will mean an entirely different experience from the one you had yesterday. There really is no telling what the waters of Kawah Putih will bring in next.

The waters of the crater lake are not the only ones that are frequently painted by nature with its magical brush. Even the rocks and sand that form the perimeter of this geologic feature have also been made as Mother Natures canvas, often painting them with whitish hues. The amount of mineral precipitation gives these geologic features a character that is uniquely beautiful. It may be surreal to some, but these have been the source of inspiration for many local and foreign artists.

Getting to Kawah Putih can be arduous. First, youd have to plane in through Soekarno-Hatta in Tangerang just outside Jakarta, come out alive from the concrete jungle of Jakarta, and head out towards the mountain resort city of Bandung in West Java. From Bandung, its a rather snail-pace crawl towards the Kawah Putih area. On a good day, which is very rare, youd get there in two hours. But during peak season, expect the two hours to double or even triple.

So what do you do in Kawah Putih? Well, aside from spending countless hours exposing your nose to the sulfuric smell of the environment and feasting your eyes on the natural watery canvas that turn from blue to green to white and brown, theres not much really. But youd be amazed at the throngs of tourists letting themselves be transported magically by the scenery.

Kawah Putih is the perfect destination if you love nature and you dont mind the smell of sulfur. Additionally, this is the perfect excuse to sample some of the local delicacies like Sop Buntut Goreng and Nasi Goreng Petai that you can only find in this part of the world. Its not for everyone, but Kawah Putih is a gem for those who can appreciate a diamond still in the rough.

Categories: Holiday & Travel

Ulu Temburong National Park, The Green Jewel Of Brunei

Brunei is a beautiful place. Known as the abode of peace, the sovereign states wealth is derived from its petroleum and natural gas fields. Its no wonder why Forbes ranked the country as the fifth richest nation.

Brunei is located in Southeast Asia on the island of Borneo. It shares a border with Malaysia. Most of its culture is Malay and has influences from Islam as well. There are two parts of the island. Majority of the population lives in the western part, while only a few live in the eastern part.

Ulu Temburong National Park

The eastern part of Brunei is known as the Temburong District. It is a mountainous area and the town lives near the rainforest. This is where the beautiful Ulu Temburong National Park is located just within the Batu Apoi Forest Reserve. They take pride in this untouched and unspoiled park within the rainforest. It’s a unique place for a vacation. Its so well preserved that only a small section of the park is accessible to tourists and the rest is off limits.

Only scientists are allowed to venture into the deeper parts of the rainforest. These scientists come from all over the world to study different species and the wildlife that lives in the pristine ecosystem. The rainforest is home to 400 different kinds of butterflies. It is the first national park since 1991. Also known as the Green Jewel of Brunei, the national park continues to be protected and preserved all throughout the years.

Best Time to Visit

If you are an animal and nature lover, you would want to visit Ulu Temburong National Park very early. The best times to spot the amazing animals are during sunrise and sunsets. The only way to see them is to join a tour that will take you in the rainforest along the river banks. There you can spot or hear birds and monkeys, such as the hornbill and the Bornean gibbons.

How to Get There

Ulu Temburong National Park is located in the upper region of eastern Brunei. On the south part of the park are mountains and hills. The northern part is the lowlands where the Temburiong and Belalong rivers can be found. The only way to get there is through river longboats from Bandar Seri Bagawan, the capital of Brunei.

The first destination is Bangar through the Limbang River, which would take about 45 minutes. From there, a road trip to Batang Duri would take about 40 minutes. Then another 40-minute boat ride along the Temburong River and into the park.

Activities

There are pathways and trails made for tourists, such as the canopy walkway that leads to different tree canopies in the rainforest. From there you can enjoy a view of the ecosystem. It would take some effort to climb and walk through the walkway but it would definitely be worth it. There is also a waterfall just outside the park where you can enjoy a foot massage from fishes that would nibble on dead skin on your feet.

Categories: Holiday & Travel

What to Consider in Travelling and Holiday during Pregnancy

A vacation before bringing a new member of the family forward is important for the mother and the couple too. This is the time to enjoy the good times before post-pregnancy duties bind you to commitment that you probably won’t have the chance to spend time together as you have been doing. It is also a great time to enhance the couple’s bonding for the preparation of the new baby.

For most couples a vacation during pregnancy is a time to bond even closer and enjoy those last baby free days. It goes a long way to freshen your soul and energize your body with fond memories…make the most of it.

If possible travel during your early second trimester i.e. your fourth and the fifth months as this is the time you are at your energetic best and the nausea and sleepiness of first trimester has worn off. Also the baby bump isn’t too big and you still have a chance to wear your sexy dresses. It is also the safest time to travel as pregnancy related complications haven’t usually set in and airlines have no travel restrictions till 32 weeks.

Check with your doctor if you might need any particular vaccination in case of foreign travel. Carry your pregnancy safe medications for common ailments after consulting your doctor. Always take travel insurance and carry a scanned copy of your documents in a pen drive for easy accessibility.

Sourced From: http://www.drseemasharma.com/things-to-keep-in-mind-before-planning-a-holiday-during-pregnancy/

Preparing for a travel and a holiday during pregnancy takes more consideration in a number of aspects, to ensure safety of the expectant mother throughout the journey and the holiday. Check to know your destination well, make good planning and be sure to pack all you may need throughout your journey. Avoid inconveniences and disappointments along the way, these may cost you dearly.

Choose your destination wisely

UK and European breaks are ideal when you’re pregnant, as they don’t involve lots of travelling. Long-haul flights can be uncomfortable during pregnancy, and there are plenty of great destinations closer to home.

It’s much easier to relax and enjoy your holiday when you know that there are good shops and medical facilities nearby. Try not to go too far off the beaten track, and do a little research online before you go.

Plan ahead

A little forward thinking can help you make the most of your time away. Make a list of all the things you want to take with you, just to be on the safe side. Our pregnancy packing checklist will get you started, and there are lots more tips below.

Pack sensibly

Staying comfortable is even more important when you’re pregnant. The right clothes, shoes and accessories can make a real difference.

If you’re likely to do lots of walking, take comfortable shoes or trainers. Bonus points if they slip on and off easily, in case bending down becomes difficult.

If you’re going to be away for more than a few weeks, make sure you pack clothes that have room for your bump to grow. Most maternity swimming costumes are able to accommodate an expanding bump but your favorite cotton sun dress might not!

Sourced From: http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a6977/10-top-tips-for-pregnant-travellers

Travelling for a holiday is not as risky during pregnancy, especially if you plan it within the second trimester. This may be the most opportune time to go and have some good time, but it is not safe all round. With the vulnerability that comes with pregnancy, you need to consider the risks that come with travels as infections, diseases and other important aspects worth of caution.

If possible, it’s best to avoid travelling to areas where vaccinations are required during pregnancy. You should also avoid travelling to areas where there is a risk of catching a mosquito-borne disease, such as malaria, dengue or zika.

If you do decide to go to a risky area, see your doctor before you go. She’ll be able to advise you on what precautions you should take, including which vaccinations are safe for you while you’re pregnant.

The standard of medical care available to you in developing countries may be low. So if you become ill, or if you have an existing complication with your pregnancy that needs to be treated while you’re away, there may be a risk to you or your baby’s health.

You’re also more likely to pick up a tummy bug in a country with poor sanitation, because of contaminated food or water supplies. Severe food poisoning can increase your risk of miscarriage.

Sourced From: http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a561731/pregnancy-travel-how-to-decide-where-to-go

Categories: Holiday & Travel