Archive for November, 2008

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Prague, culture and beauty hand in hand

November 28, 2008

Known as the “city of a hundred spires”, Prague is the capital of the Czech Republic and boasts of a rich cultural heritage. Situated close to the Vltava River, Prague has a variety of museums, galleries and theaters which give you a chance to appreciate this ancient culture.

Declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Prague’s historic center is a good place to start your adventures. Apart from the Old Town Square which dates back to the 12th century, Prague Castle and the old Jewish quarter are also worth visiting as they are very much a part of the city’s history.

In order to get a clearer picture of Prague history you should visit the National Museum (Vaclavske namesti, 68) where you will find all manner of exhibits and relics which bear testament to the country’s origins. Other museums worth visiting include the Puppet Museum (Karlova, 12) and the Museum of Communism (Na prikope, 10) which looks back at “life” under Soviet rule.

Prague is also home to the National Gallery collection which is showcased in 6 separate venues including the Convent of St. Agnes of Bohemia (U Milosrdnych, 17) which is only a 10 minute walk from the Old Town Hall. Art lovers should make time to visit the Picture Gallery of Prague Castle as well.

Another great way to experience Prague culture is by taking in a traditional theater production. The National Theater (Narodni triad, 2) showcases some remarkable ballet and drama performances, while the Prague State Opera and the Marionette Theater (Karlova, 12) which keeps alive the over 200 year traditions of puppetry are also worth visiting.

A visit to Prague is to experience a culture and traditions of a people who won their freedom after years of hardship under foreign rule and who have begun to rewrite a new chapter in their history.

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Family holidays in Ibiza

November 28, 2008

Ibiza is not only famous as a clubbers’ paradise but becomes a holiday paradise for families seeking warm weather, the beaches and the choice in entertainment for all ages, which is probably some of the best in the world.

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For those traveling with young children, a good option would be to take the mini train sightseeing tours. Another option is to take a boat ride to the nearby beaches, hippy markets and towns. Santa Eulalia, Figueretas and Formentera can all be reached via boat and a good starting point would be San Antonio. Or else why not take a round the island trip by car or mini train. The whole island can be visited in one day, whilst stopping for refreshments and fun on the attractive beaches.

The Medieval castle at Dalt Vila is an interesting tour for the entire family and you can take a break at the many restaurants and bars around. The Stalactite caves above the Puerto de San Miguel are another worthwhile visit. Girls will love the hippy markets that have trinkets, jewellery and clothes for sale. If you are in Ibiza in July – August you can participate in one the fireworks shows and fiesta processions which are outstanding events.

There are play parks in most resorts but the one at Playa d’en Bossa which includes carousels and bouncy castles is a firm favourite with the little folk. San Antonio Bay and Cala Llonga too have lots of fun activities with Trampolines, climbing frames and loads of space in safe enclosed areas. When you visit Ibiza’s many beaches don’t forget to armour yourselves with lots of sunscreen and cover ups.

The beaches are full of water sports including diving, windsurfing, sailing and parasailing. The Aguamar water park with lots of slides and pools to play in is also worth visiting.

Whether it is to party or to spend some quality time with your family, Ibiza has something for everyone to enjoy.

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Holiday in Majorca with children

November 27, 2008

The island of Majorca (near Spain’s east coast) is an ideal holiday destination, especially if you’re with children. Home to several kid friendly beaches, Majorca is a great place for children and has a wide range of attractions which the whole family can enjoy.

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Water parks abound in Majorca and are great places to spend the entire day. Aqualand El Arenal (near the El Arenal beach) is one of the largest in Europe and its attractions which include the “Devil’s Tail” and the “Grand Canyon” will be a definite hit with the kids. Aqualandia / EI Foro de Majorca (in Binissalem) with its adventure playground and the western themed Wild West water park (in Magaluf) are also worth a visit and make for a memorable holiday.

Wondering where to head next? Majorca also has many animal based attractions. A good place to start is at Cala Millor’s “Auto Safari” which apart from a safari park has a baby zoo as well (look out for the adorable baby elephants!). The somewhat pricey Nemo Submarine ride (in Magaluf) is a unique 2 hour underwater adventure in an actual mini submarine, while Marineland (in Portals Nous) has dolphin and sea lion shows which will keep children enthralled from start to finish.

Other popular family friendly attractions in Majorca include Palma Nova’s quite wonderful 54 hole, crazy golf course (called Golf Fantasia) and spectacular Pirate Show, the Calvia Pony Club (in Calvia) and the Magaluf Karting go-kart track (near the aquapark) which is a favourite among older kids.

Majorca caters to children of all ages (including the young at heart!) and is a great place for a memorable vacation.

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Majorca the destination for Sailing and Water Sports

November 26, 2008

Surrounded by the calm waters of the Mediterranean, Majorca is a great place to visit particularly if you love sailing or experiencing the adrenaline rush of water sports.

Home to around 41 marinas and thousands of yacht moorings, Majorca offers countless sailing opportunities for experienced sailors and clueless landlubbers alike! Near the island’s various marinas you can find several companies which hire out boats (with or without crew) that not only give you a chance to go sailing, but enjoy some deep sea swimming and fishing as well. A good place to start is in Pollensa which has several such boat companies, while hires can range from anything from a day to a week.

The coastal towns of Majorca also offer plenty of exciting water sport activities (including places where you can learn the ropes). Some good spots for water skiing and windsurfing include Cala Millor, Magaluf, Palma Nova and Santa Ponsa. Majorca’s Pollensa Bay is also a great place for kite surfing and wake boarding. The somewhat expensive free range jet skiing experience is unfortunately only available for those with a licence (to sail a boat), though in certain places on Santa Ponsa beach and El Arenal you can have a go within a demarcated area (yes it is restrictive, but it is indeed better than nothing)

Majorca also boasts of some exotic sea life and going snorkelling or scuba diving is a great way to see what lies beneath. If you are planning to go scuba diving you either need to have a diving certificate (for deep sea tours) or take a scuba diving course before beginning. A cheaper option would be to do some old fashioned snorkelling which can be enjoyed by the whole family.

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Be it sailing with the wind in your hair or clinging onto dear life as you water ski across the ocean, Majorca gives you a chance to try it all!

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Costa del Sol with children

November 26, 2008

Planning a trip to Spain’s Costa del Sol and wondering how to keep your kids entertained? Costa del Sol is loaded with activities that both children and parents can take part in and have fun.

If your family is into outdoor adventure, then a good place to start is at the Selwo Adventure Park in Estepona. Home to more than 2,000 animals (including lions and elephants), this safari nature park can be explored by way of 4×4 jeep rides or on overhead walkways. Children will also love the Selwo Marina (in Benalmadena Costa) which houses a diverse collection of marine life including dolphins.

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For a change of pace you can take a Benalmadena Cable Car (next to Tivoli World) to the top of Monte Calamorro, where stunning views of the Costa del Sol await.

If you are planning to visit all 3 attractions mentioned above, buying a “Selwo Pack” will save you money on entrance fees.

Another great way to keep children occupied is by taking them to one of Costa del Sol’s several water parks. Aqualand Torremolinos with its “Boomerang” ride and “Kamikaze Twister” is definitely worth a visit and so too is Aquapark Mijas (in Fuengirola).

Other places worthy of a visit include, the Fuengirola Zoo (opposite Mijas Aquapark), the Tivoli World amusement park, the Torremolinos Crocodile Park (next to Aqualand Torremolinos) and Natura Aventura (in San Pedro de la Alantara) which has everything from rock climbing to paintball.

With all these attractions it is easy to forget that the Costa del Sol is also home to some stunning beaches which both you and your children can enjoy after a long day of adventure seeking. Happy holidays!

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Christmas in Benidorm

November 25, 2008

Christmas is by and large especially in Europe a very cold affair. Whilst good cheer is quite apparent there is a more tangible reason why a myriad of tourists find themselves celebrating the festive season in the essentially Spanish town of Benidorm. One would probably think it’s the usual type of revelry that can be expected from such a locale, and yes, although an enviable nightlife cannot be divorced from a unique destination like Benidorm, a party lifestyle is not the main attraction when it comes to spending a Christmas to remember in the so called ‘Manhattan of Spain”.

The real reason why many tourists venture into Benidorm to enjoy Christmas is twofold. One, it is during this time that the air fares are truly cheap. Henceforth, there is no propensity to “penny pinch”. A generous Christmas could easily be enjoyed in Benidorm without ever courting that nagging feeling that one is coerced into experiencing a budgeted holiday. It truly is a Christmas experience that is more to last a lifetime. Secondly, Benidorm is one of the only places in the world where one is guaranteed of having a Christmas minus the wet and miserable cold weather, which is bound to hamper good spirits.

Many a tourist would lay testament to the fact that Christmas in Benidorm is rather active. There are many activities and events that are tourist friendly not to mention the myriad of pubs, clubs, restaurants and hotels in Benidorm that are owned by many an expatriate. As a direct consequence of this it would come as no surprise that the season of Christmas is well represented. Whilst during this day and age, the month of December is commercialized to a saturated point, it would be prudent to note that the Christmas season in Benidorm is more focused on good old fashioned fun with and as it is expected, a fair amount of religious events to supplement the season.

Any tourist that does visit Benidorm during the Christmas season will find that the essentials of a true “British Christmas” still remain intact. For example, as mentioned earlier, there are a generous set of restaurants that are British owned. Hence one could expect to enjoy the various nitty gritty that’ll make up a British type of Christmas. As many would state, it is very possible to enjoy a fabulous English breakfast replete with a choice of fresh juices. The standard breakfast would entail a mix of egg sunny side up, tender fried bacon, mushrooms, black pudding, tomatoes and the ever present baked beans. This type of breakfast would be a staple in any of the Benidorm hotels.

During this December season, visitors would be prodded to witness and enjoy the fireworks display and the public carol singing that takes place on the eve of Christmas. Needless to say, the town and surrounding areas do get very busy. So there really is no reduction as it were in entertainment in this magical town. Yet for those tourists and visitors to Benidorm who are looking for a more visually scintillating type of entertainment, there is the Benidorm Palace to consider. The latter has throughout the years been host to many a differing type of entertainment which has wowed audiences, so much so that there are enough voluntary reviews to be read throughout the world wide web. The majority of performances by various artists do take place during the Christmas season. Also when considering convenience it is worth noting that this hotspot for entertainment is in close proximity to any hotel in Benidorm.

All in all, it could be resolutely stated that Benidorm is truly a location to enjoy a fun filled Christmas. Visited by millions of tourists every year, many would say that it is the December season that holds the most memorable time for them. To find out, a visit to this location of good cheer truly is worth it.

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Benidorm

November 24, 2008

Benidorm is located about 45 km northeast of Alicante, just south of Altea is one main attraction along the costa blanca. Contempt its skyscraper skyline, it base for beach and nightlife, Lots of Benidorm nightlife. A very interesting place for the holiday lovers.

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Benidorm is surrounded by up to 1558 m high mountains, Benidorm is well protected against the sometimes cold north winds. Therefore, the weather in Benidorm stays very gentle even through winter times. In Summer, Benidorm is one big party area,  With more the 1000 Restaurants and over 30 Discos, Benidorm offers nearly all which is needed for a “busy” nightlife. One of the 35 000 beds in Benidorm hotels or over 200 000 apartments and accommodation places keep the visitors in town. The attractions are Benidorm’s casco antiguo, playa de poniente and the playa de levante beaches