Siena

If you are endlessly searching for a holiday and are still stuck as to where to go, then look no further, your holiday nightmares now cease to exist. Siena, in Tuscany, Italy is the epitome of sophistication, so if you want a holiday that more than lives up to lofty expectations, then this is the destination for you. Siena is famous for its glorious cuisine, ancient art, as well as beautiful vineyards and wine.

Siena’s centre has been made a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and once you have visited you will see why. Siena is steeped in a rich history that can be traced back centuries. The epicentre of Siena is simply stunning and alive with a vibrant culture that is completely unique to Siena alone. The medieval cityscape is truly wondrous to behold and is easy to see why people return to Siena year upon year.

For any budding theologian, Siena is a must visit destination. Teeming with churches and cathedrals of all shapes and sizes, you will be amazed at the glorious, and beautiful, architecture that surrounds you. The roman-gothic architecture is both enchanting and haunting, set on a backdrop of perfect blue, cloudless skies.

If you are more into the arts, than theology, then you must visit the vast array of art galleries that adorn Siena’s streets. What is more the art galleries are home to some beautiful, and quite unique, pieces of art dating back to the renaissance. Of course, there are an overabundance of religious paintings, due to Italy’s historic Catholic roots, but there are other sites to behold with the walls of the art galleries that will astound and amaze all.

Should your budget be somewhat limited, do not let this put you off travelling to Siena. This website is full of cost saving ideas for travelling in Italy.

Piazza del Campo is perfect for those wishing to indulge in a spot of history while travelling in Siena. The medieval town is simply stunning and its architectural integrity will only feed your fascination for all things Italian. Learn more about a completely unique society and a truly one of a kind culture while in the Piazza del Campo. The Piazza took its unique shape in the 1200s and has not changed since. It truly is like stepping back in time.

For those wanting their history more recent, then opt for Fonte Gaia, which dates back to the 1400s. The gothic style fountain is truly enchanting and really is a sight to behold. Those who have travelled to Siena have stated that for them, it is a true taste of Italian life. Many revere its quaint, medieval charm and herald it as being perfect.

Siena is stunning and affordable, and with the glorious Italian sunshine beating down on you, what more could you want from a holiday? Should the sites of Siena become too much, then Florence can be reached easily, and cheaply, in a short space of time.

Visit Siena this summer and make memories that you will cherish for a lifetime.

Addo Elephant Park, South Africa

Is it time to book your annual holiday yet? For many people, the time has arrived where they need to come to a decision as to how they will spend their vacation this year. You have worked hard for the last twelve months or so to save for this time away that is so badly needed to help recharge your batteries and give you the will to carry on for another year. The decision is vital because time off work is in short supply and it cannot be wasted or it will feel as if you have worked and saved for nothing.

Would you be interested in a holiday with a difference this year? Travelling to a Spanish island for sun and sand is all well and good but it hardly tickles the adventurers taste buds. A holiday that makes you think more may be in order, especially if you are aged from mid thirties upwards. Here are a few suggestions for holidays with a difference this year.

Train To Be A Warrior Like Genghis Khan

Many people are unsure where Mongolia is on the world map. Look it up and you will be surprised how large the country is. Start the holiday at the capital, Ulaanbaatar where two museums will give you an idea of how it was to be a soldier under the great Genghis Khan in the 13th century. Sample the food and culture of Mongolia and learn how to make arrows the ancient way. Then it is time to head off to try training camp where you will learn many aspects of a Mongolian Warriors life. Try using a traditional bow and arrow and riding a horse during guard duty where you are on the lookout for wolves and bad guys. This holiday is certainly different from the standard Spanish resorts and will stir your passion for adventure.

Safari

If you are a lover of wildlife and grand scenery, a safari may be right up your street. African tours and safaris with Adventure World will open your eyes to the world you have seen on television. Mother nature takes survival of the fittest to its ultimate level in the Serengeti, where predator and prey come together in a battle for survival. Safari holidays are about much more than trips to see the animals. There are incredible landscapes and geological features to visit in Tanzania.

Live In An African Village

Travel to Gambia where an African village has been built so that guests may experience the authentic lifestyle of a native African. Life is harder and relies more on basic survival during this holiday, though there is a bar and restaurant available for those who need a little respite from village hardship. You are on holiday after all.

Well, I hope some of the above ideas have sparked your interest to alternative possibilities that are available to everyone. The internet is a wonderful thing and it has provided possibilities for research that were not available to the masses before it entered their homes.Though the world appears to be shrinking thanks to instant communication and high speed travel, it is still a big and wonderful planet, just waiting to be explored.

wine on the hoof

Wine aficionados are plentiful; everyone seems to be an expert in wine these days, but so many people have rarely travelled to the countries where the wine has been produced. Anyone can read the label from a bottle of wine, and repeat the rhetoric that is given on the bottle. For expert advice on wines of the world, then look no further. This guide will either inspire you to drink more wine, or to travel more widely, and neither of those things is a negative in my opinion.

Getting started in the wonderful world of wine can be a little daunting. With so many experts on good wines, it is always best to seek the advice of those in the know. That said, there is nothing more wonderful than starting your own novice wine club and having your own take on the world’s wines.

The world’s top wine regions can be split as detailed below, starting from the best wine region, to the not-so-great:

France

Italy

Spain

United States

Australia

Germany

South Africa

Chile

Portugal

Of course, the better the wine region, the more you will pay in terms of price. So if you are looking for a mid-range wine, with a mid-range price tag then opt for an Australian wine. You will not compromise on taste or price. Furthermore you can buy wine online in Australia with Jim's Cellars for good, quality Australian wine.

When I was travelling in Europe, the wines I sampled were second to none. Of course, being a domestic product, the price was a lot lower than having to import wine. The wine in France is exemplary and is unrivalled by its counterparts. The French region of Bordeaux offers the perfect solution to life’s big wine questions and cannot be beaten world over. However, wine in Tuscany is not to be sniffed at; the local Tuscan wine is simply divine and is perfect for those wishing to relax after a long day of exploring the Italian hillsides.  If you want to take the world over, one winery at a time, then Europe should be your starting point. Aside from the fantastic wine regions, there is so much to see and do in diverse Europe that you may never want to come home. Accompany your wine with exquisite local cuisine, coupled with visiting attractions of historical and cultural interest for a holiday that you are sure to never forget.

Of course, there is much debate over what is the ‘world’s best wine’ and I am not here to tell you what you should or should not like. My favourite wine is a good Rioja. While a quality Rioja comes with a hefty price tag, once you have sampled the delights of a quality Spanish red, you will never look back. Prices of Rioja range from £30 to £150, so it is certainly not your bog-standard under a tenner wine. It really is something to be enjoyed.

If you are still mystified by wine, then sample your own wines and let everyone know what you think of them.

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There are so many destinations available to us these days that selecting the right one can give us a real headache. If we get it wrong, it could mean that a whole year of saving and enduring a mindless occupation could have been for nothing. That is a disaster for anyone.

If you are reading this, there is a good chance you are looking for inspiration. I have travelled and reviewed many countries and am happy to share my thoughts on these destinations with you.  Some may be expensive trips while others are right on your doorstep.

Paris

Do you yearn to visit the city of romance? There are great things to see in Paris, such as the Eiffel Tower and the works of great artists in The Louvre. The imposing cathedral of Notre dam was the setting for the great movie and the Arc De Triomph stands at the junction of twelve avenues including the infamous Champs Elysees.

Cairo

Ancient history awaits you in Egypt. The great Sphinx stand guard over the Geyser Plateau and the great Pyramids. Only when one stands at the foot of these incredible structures can the fully appreciate the monumental feat of construction they really are. The great Cairo museum also awaits to present you with unbelievable treasures that were discovered by archeologists.

Marrakech

The beautiful city of Marrakech is set in Morocco, the country will Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines. There are many small luxury hotels Marrakech and many interesting places to see, such as the Badi Palace.

Orlando

For the lovers of theme parks there is no better place to visit than Orlando, Florida. Visit places such as Legoland and the incredible Seaworld which is the best on the planet. Good weather is virtually guaranteed in the summer, and it is a place children love. For the adventure holiday of a lifetime for the whole family, Orlando is the place to go.

Amsterdam

A short flight that can be booked extremely cheaply could land you in Amsterdam within an hour. Here you will experience beautiful bars and cafes and the incredible Van Gogh museum where a feast awaits your eyes. People use bikes to get around the city and, if you are fit enough to use one, they are available for daily hire. Amsterdam boasts a relaxed lifestyle where, it seems, anything goes.

Rome

Italy is a favourite return destinations for travellers. There is so much to see in Rome that it is hard to fit it into one holiday. Visit Vatican city where the works of Michelangelo still adorn the roof of the Sistine Chapel. The ruins of the imposing Coliseum, where many people ended their lives, stand as a testament to ancient Roman ingenuity and power.

Athens

The birthplace of modern civilisation has many ancient ruins to explore. Though the country's economy is suffering presently, there is still great tourism to be had. Don’t mention the Elgin Marbles though; I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it.

And those are my top seven world destinations worth a visit. I hope you find them as enthralling as I did during my time there. Happy trails!

Surfers on the beach

The state of Victoria warmly welcomes all kinds of visitors from around the world. Most of the activity takes place in the metropolis of Melbourne, but other areas offer fun and excitement as well. Many visitors only stay for a week or two, but you may feel that you would like to explore this rich area for an extended period of time. Do you know what to do if you want to stay in Victoria for an entire year? You can make this dream a reality by following a few simple steps and abiding by the rules set in place by the Australian government.

Migration

A migration agent assists you in obtaining the required documentation to reside in Victoria for an entire year. You will need to obtain the right type of visa for your intentions and purposes. The correct visitor visa will keep you out of trouble with authorities. Australia enjoys tourism, but rules are created for a reason. If the proper authorities find you in Australia without a visa during a long stay, you must return to your home country. Your stay in Victoria will be exciting as long as you take care to observe the proper visa requirements.

Work

If you would like to make your visa applications more appealing, you might consider applying for a work visa in Australia. You could stay for quite some time in Australia on a work visa. You would have plenty of time to immerse yourself completely in Australian culture. You could go anywhere in Victoria to experience life to the fullest. You could also earn money to fund your future travels while you stay here. If you speak to a migration agent, you should find the help you need to acquire the right visa for your travels. The opportunity to obtain visitor visas is one you can't pass up, but you also have to obey the laws.

Melbourne entices visitors from all over the world. A stay in Victoria could be what you need to expand your cultural horizons. You will realize how fun the Australian people can truly be once you live with them for an extended period of time. Be sure to contact an Australian migration agent well in advance of your arrival. Once you explain your intentions, migration personnel will assist you with all of the necessary paperwork. The process will be painless and easy if you do everything correctly.

Las Vegas

The casinos and gambling mecca’s of the world have long been viewed as travel destinations that you can only visit one or twice a year. In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Consider that into today’s globalized society we can access just about anything we want from anywhere in the world. We have telecommuters making successful careers from themselves without ever stepping foot into the office. For this very same reason the average traveler should be able to get their gaming fix in more than once or twice year, and without traveling to Macau or Las Vegas to do it. Online gaming has been steadily growing in popularity over the past few years, especially as legal regulations become more relaxed, and the budget minded consumer wants more money available to play with rather than spending on travel.

Money and time aren’t the only positive factors of online gaming, there are many others. A casino can be a fun filled environment, but that also makes them crowded ones. There can be times when you have to wait hours to get on a table to play live roulette or blackjack, but at home you can push the power button and be online playing within minutes. There is also a certain fear of trying out fun new games at the casino, but when you can play online with a certain degree of anonymity you might find yourself learning new table games you never thought possible. The harsh conditions of a brick and mortar casino can often times be a turn off as well. Consider all of that smoke billowing throughout, very few casinos in the world have a smoking policy these days, so that is certainly another plus of playing at home.

Of course gaming from home does have a few disadvantages. You certainly have less cuisine options when dining from home, albeit it is quite a bit less expensive to make your own food. Also, many casinos have other entertainment options outside of gaming. Some of the most popular stage shows are in Las Vegas, not to mention singers and entertainers galore. Outside of flipping on the television or renting a movie, these are options that simply aren’t available to you at home. But outside of the entertainment options, I see very little difference in gaming at home versus in the actions at the casino.

New York, New York

There’s no other city like it. New York appeals to such a wide range of travellers, from cash-strapped tourists looking for a back to basics apartment in urban gritty Brooklyn, to those with five star tastes sipping champagne at the Plaza before retiring to their 6 star suites. It’s the dramatic location of hundreds of movies, and one of the best places in the world for street food.

New York City

So where should you head to if you’re planning a trip to New York? We’ve suggested four ideas that work for a long weekend.

For those looking for something they can try at home first

Shake Shack, which has since migrated all the way over to our shores, originated across the pond. And much like the name suggests, it’s all about good food, great shakes, and should cost you under $10 for a meal. These guys have been featured in Zagat, Time Out New York, USA Today and the Wall Street Journal, so they’re definitely worth a visit. If you want to try before you buy, they have one located in Covent Garden. Great for those who want to carry on their memories once they get home, too.

For those seeking the high life

The Empire State building is iconic, recognisable from movies since the dawn of the moving picture. But it’s a little strange being on top of that building. Purely because if you’re on it, you don’t get to see it, especially when it’s lit up in a myriad of different colours. A better and less crowded option is Top of the Rock, at the top of the Rockefeller Centre. You get to take in the entire city of New York, as well as those iconic buildings that have shaped the city for hundreds of years. Try getting there for dusk to see sunset and watch the city that never sleeps light up.

For nature lovers

Central Park will probably be top of the list of any nature lover; with acres of parkland and wildlife, it would be a sin to miss this out. But another less known attraction is The High Line. Once an elevated railroad, the train tracks were kept in place and it’s now a surreal mile-long amble. Well, with New Yorks iconic yellow cabs whizzing about and beeping their horns below and giant skyscrapers and towers looming in the distance, it’s certainly a walk like no other. The plant life was kept as authentic as possible, and a lot of what you’ll see was growing on the site before it was redeveloped. The walk ends at the Meatpacking district, perfect foodies, as the next tip explains…

For foodies and shopaholics

With enough department stores to max out a millionaire’s credit card, it’s inevitable any tourist will head on over to Times Square and the surrounding shops to get their Big Brown Bag. But Chelsea Market, located in New York’s Meatpacking district, is definitely worth a stop by. Featuring a veritable mix of bakeries, bookstores, ice cream vendors and cupcake stands, each one of these little stalls and shops is enough to make any foodie’s mouth start watering. The market is covered too, so it’s a perfect place to head to if you’re travelling to New York in the winter months. Stop by Eleni’s and grab one of her legendary cookies. You won’t regret it.

So these are four top picks that are guaranteed to appeal to any kind of traveller. Of course, there’s loads more to do, from foodie tours, to movie tours, to celeb spotting and boat trips. New York really does have something for everyone.

For more information about New York and travel to America, then contact http://www.official-esta.com/.

Alaska Cruise

If you’re thinking of taking a cruise, you might be wondering where abouts you should go. Some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world are best viewed from the deck of a ship, so if you want a magical journey filled with sights and luxury, a cruise is definitely for you. Travelling the open ocean with the fresh air filling your lungs is one of the coolest ways to explore and discover somewhere you haven’t been before (not to mention very simple). There are a number of regions for you to visit, however; I think the following places are the best in the world:

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Alaska

In Alaska, almost anything can happen. Depending on the time you go, you could be enjoying your dinner at 10pm in daylight, enjoying the amazing mountain range views. You’ll love eating your dinner with a spectacular view! There’s 76,000 kilometres of rugged shoreline, plus 4 million acres of national parklands. The dramatic landscapes filled with interesting wildlife will leave you at a loss for words. On a normal week long cruise, you’ll go on a scenic flight over Skagway, then perhaps go bear watching in Ketchikan, explore Sitka and it’s old forts, and maybe even ride on a dog sled if you’re feeling adventurous! If you love nature and gorgeous scenery, the Alaskan cruise could be exactly what you need. Don’t forget your binoculars to view all this right from the deck, and perhaps even orca whales, bald eagles, and caribou in the summertime.

Australasia

No, that isn’t a spelling mistake. If you weren’t sure already, Australasia comprises of Australia, New Zealand, and other neighboring islands located in the South Pacific. Sydney is definitely one of the greatest ports of call, and you’ll be in no doubt as to why when you spot the energetic aquatic landscape in the early morning sun. Diverse destinations are always on offer throughout Australia and New Zealand. Fancy the cosmopolitan city of Melbourne? How about the elegant Wellington? It’s very easy to view the most gorgeous parts of Australasia from the comfort of  your luxury ship. Nature is one of the biggest attractions in Australasia, and you have some huge choices to make. How about the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland? Or maybe the Kimberlys? You’ll be able to tick plenty of ‘Must Sees’ off your bucket list by cruising Australasia. Book a cruise like this at www.cruise1st.co.uk.

The Med

There are few words that can describe the stunning views here and do them justice. The winding streets filled with cafes, shops, and mysterious alleyways are something else when the sunlight bounces off them - don’t miss out on an excursion. If you’re after something a little glamorous, you can’t go wrong with a trip to the med on a cruise ship. The climate is pretty much always great, and at least ‘warm’ in the winter time. The cuisine is to die for, so don’t fill up on too much restuarant food from the ship before your excursion. You’ll love basking in the sun as you arrive to port, perhaps then going to explore a luxury resort or visiting a cultured museum. You’ll love the mix of cultures, languages, and foods.

The Caribbean

The Caribbean is understandably, one of the world’s top picks when it comes to cruising holidays. The warm, blue waters sparkle as they beckon you to take a dip, and the exotic views are something else. The culture, wonders, and charm here will be like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Viewing the archipelago you’ll think you’ve stepped on to the scene of a glamorous film set, with coconut trees, mountains, and valleys of banana trees. Towering volcanoes and coral reef rife with bright aquatic creatures will take your breath away. Fancy a bit of sunbathing? You won’t be short of choice! Dominica has an amazing range of natural wonders, while Morne Trois Pitons National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you want to learn a little on your cruise and get a taste for the history of the place, travel to Curacao - once the centre for the Caribbean slave trade. Today, it’s famous for it’s diverse architecture in Willemstad. A very unique, picturesque cruise with plenty for the adventurers out there to discover.

Asia

You know those postcards you used to send back home when you were on holiday as a child (I did, anyway)? A cruise here will be reminiscent of the views on those glossy bits of card. This is truly a unique way to cruise which will make you realise exactly why cruising is a special way to travel, if you hadn’t realised it already. Singapore has some world class golf courses for those who want to improve on their swing, and the panoramic view of Hong Kong's skyline is a sight to behold. Excursions in Asia offer some of the most breathtaking open spaces with  butterflies, exotic flowers, and other rare wildlife - just take a trip to Kuala Lumpur’s Lake Gardens. You could even climb into a long tail boat for a dazzling ride over Phuket’s sparkling waters. The beaches, tropical jungles, exciting history, and gorgeous food will make you never want to leave the place. Asia has mesmerised traveller for years, and you won’t be any different. You’ll get a unique perspective on a diverse region, but also a very easy, fuss free way to see it. What more could you want?

You wanted to know the best places in the whole world to see by cruise, and there they are. You have so many places to choose from; from the gorgeous Alaskan mountain range to the charming Caribbean landscape. Cruising is a great way to fit a lot in, with a limited amount of time; allowing you to see a stunning range of views, enjoy great food, and take exciting excursions all in the space of 1 week or 2. It’s never been easier to go out exploring, so don’t hesitate to pick one of these top locations from around the world for your cruise!

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