When you think of Australia, Sydney and Melbourne spring to mind. After all, they are the most popular tourist destinations in the country. So, it isn’t hard to see why people think so much of New South Wales and Victoria. What with the Opera House and The Great Ocean Road, it is hard to look past both. However, there is one state which does compare, and it is Queensland. Sure, it might not have the same popularity, but it does have the following. Here’s why QL is the best state to visit in all of Australia.
The Great Barrier Reef
Located off the north eastern coast, the Barrier Reef is a living organism which stretches over 2000km. It is home to more than 1500 species of fish, 411 types of coral, and 134 species of sharks and rays. The colours are as exotic and as vivid as you can imagine, and the diving is among the best in the world. Quite simply, it is one of the most amazing tourist attractions in the world which you must see sooner rather than later. In fact, many view it as one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
Animal Parks & Zoos
If getting into the water with large rays and sharks isn’t your thing, you can go to the many zoos and wildlife centres. To begin with there is Sea World in the Gold Coast, which is home to animals from Polar Bears to Dolphins. If you like, you can even take a boat ride and watch the action from as close as possible. And, if the idea of Orcas in captivity is wrong, don’t worry because there are zero killer whales. Probably the best wildlife park is Australia Zoo. Dedicated to Steve Irwin, you can watch everything from crocodiles to tigers in a safe environment.
So, Australia is not known for its bad weather considering the temperatures hit the mid-40s in summer. However, it is their winter now, and the climate in the south can get pretty cold. The likes of Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne experience wind, rain and even snow in the winter, yet Queensland stays sunny. Because it is at the north eastern tip of the country, the climate is tropical from July to July. Indeed, it might be too hot at times, but it is a nice problem to have. It beats watching the rain from your hotel window!
The Mix Of Cultures
From scuba diving in the Barrier Reef to surfing on Fraser Island, there is plenty to do. But, it is not just the abundance of activities which makes QL great. It is also the mix of cultures. After visiting the world famous animal attractions, you can just as easily venture into the Outback to see them in their natural habitat. Then, if you fancy a bit of luxury, there is always Brisbane which is Australia’s most liveable city.
Simply put, Queensland has it all, which is the main reason it should not be missed.
I love a good adventure, but no matter what type of trip I take, I always make sure that I take a few things along with me to ensure my trip is as comfortable as possible. Whether you’re traveling like a backpacker, or you have a unlimited budget, these tips will ensure your trip goes as smoothly as possible.
1. A Great Book
I love reading and the truth is when you’re traveling there’s so much down time, such as waiting in airports, on planes, trains, in cars, and even waiting in immigration lines. Often there’s no wifi in those situations, so I prefer to have a book on hand so I can entertain myself and make the time go faster. I personally prefer paper books and it turns out I’m not alone! In a recent poll, Opodo discovered that 78% of Brits choose to read paper books over any other type of reading material. Need some reading inspiration? Check out this list:
Top 10 Summer Holiday Reads
Small Great Things, Jodi Picoult
I See You, Clare Mackintosh
Conclave, Robert Harris
The Essex Serpent, Sarah Parry
This Must Be The Place, Maggie O’Farrell
The Gypsy Moth, Julia Fierro
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, Arundhati Roy
Hunger, Roxanne Gay
H (a)ppy, Nicola Barker
Sour Heart, Jenny Zhang.
2. Packing Cubes
Packing cubes make unpacking and packing so much easier. You can organise your packing cubes by the type of clothes, for example one cube for all tops, another for dresses and so on. It helps me keep organised and ensures that when I have to pack my bags I can fit more and also get things packed so much faster.
3. Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is probably the second most important thing for me after a good book – just kidding. It’s essential to travel with travel insurance because medical coverage when in a foreign country can quickly become very expensive. Travel insurance gives me great peace of mind and ensures I feel more secure when I’m traveling.
4. International Adapters
If you’re traveling to another country that uses a different plug you’re going to want to buy international adapters in advance. They’re SO expensive in the airport, like 2-3 times the price you can pay for them in a department store. I personally prefer the adapters that have surge protectors as well, which is especially important if you’re traveling to third world countries where the electricity may be unstable.
5. Lonely Planet
I love traveling with a Lonely Planet book as it gives a great summary to what to do, where to eat and where to stay in a new place. It’s compact and has everything you need to get your feet on the ground and your holiday off to a great start!
These are my travel essentials, do you have anything you never want to leave without? Share with me down below:
Traveling with kids can be a bit of a challenge, you have to factor in their nap times if they’re young, how to keep them entertained, and also how you can have a holiday that also feels relaxing for you and your partner. Cruises may be the perfect solution, as they offer a few advantages that traditional holidays struggle to offer as well. For those of you feeling like you really need a holiday, but not sure how you’ll manage it with a few kids in tow, check out these 3 reasons to go on a cruise holiday.
1. A Set Price
Traveling with kids is expensive, because you’re going to have to pay their airfares and often pay a lot ore for accommodation. On top of that you have the costs for meals, which is often frustrating with kids as they tend to just pick at restaurant meals. Going on a cruise ensures that you know the price before you’ve ever stepped out of your door. This means you can better budget in order to maximise the length of your holiday. Knowing exactly how much your holiday will cost before you even arrive can offer a huge peace of mind and reduce stress. There’s nothing worse than getting a bill at the end of your hotel stay and it having additional taxes and fees you weren’t expecting. One set price keeps things simple and ensures it’s easier to plan.
2. Kids Activities
Kids activities are great for a number of reasons, firstly it gives your kids something to do during the day, allowing you to enjoy some much needed adult time. It encourages them to socialise with other kids, which will make their cruise time much more special. It also keeps them busy so by the time they’re back in your room, they’re tired and ready to sleep. It’s one of a parent’s greatest challenges when traveling to find suitable entertainment for their child and to balance their needs and wants against your own. A cruise ship helps make that even easier, ensuring your children love being on a cruise as much as you do.
3. A Room for an Extended Period of Time
Don’t underestimate the comfort of being able to be in the same room for a few days, or weeks at a time. It will allow you to develop a routine with your children, unpack properly and even bring a few more toys to keep them entertained as you wont be lugging them between destination. This will help you relax and will ensure young kids develop a better sense of schedule while away on a cruise trip.
Traveling with kids can be a right challenge, but by choosing a cruise holiday you’re likely to have a more relaxing and enjoyable holiday away with your family.
The ‘h’ is silent, so be careful how you pronounce it. Above all else, Phuket is like an oasis in South Asia, because it might just be the last true large population location, where the culture has not bowed down to all others. It’s very proud to be an island, and it’s 50 kilometers long, which makes it the largest in Thailand. The mood is such that it doesn’t really seem like it’s a part of any country, and definitely feels like it should be an island. The people are incredibly laid back. They like to trade, drink, eat, laugh and share stories, but they also like to not take things seriously. This is great if you’re looking to explore Thailand, without getting mixed up with the traditional lifestyle. Phuket has been showing signs of conservatively but nonetheless, approaching great levels of modernity. There are so many things to do and places to explore, but what will leave an imprint on you, is how far the people and island have come.
Image credit – Dan Taylor
Speed boating power
When you’re on an island, you can’t stick to the inner cities, and the countryside, because there’s nothing quite like exploring the coast. Phang Nga Bay is littered with over one hundred miniature islands, all made out of rocky limestone. The beauty of the coast was once given the honor of being in a James Bond film because of the tucked-away caverns of Talu Island. Once only able to be reached by canoe, now you can power through the island on a rumbling speedboat, thrashing up waves and cutting across the light blue sea. It’s a fun activity which lasts for four days, which will also see you dining for lunch at the small floating village of Koh Panyee. At the end of the tour, you’ll be introduced to the warmth of the Naka Island beach.
Photo by – Thomas Wanhoff
If you take a trip to Thailand and don’t experience the ‘hurt so good’ feeling of a Thai massage, consider that trip a waste. There are many luxury spas, which cater for everyone and take into consideration sensitive skin, aching muscles and if you’re new to the pressures, the massage therapists will apply. Generally, a contemporary Thai spa will include skin care treatments which use the natural oils of the lotus flower. It’s their sacred flower, and the petals are supposed to have mystical healing powers as there are decedents from Buddha. The traditional Thai massage is one of a kind, and no matter where you get it, the only true, authentic massage is in Thailand. Centuries and centuries of knowledge are bestowed upon you with firm, mild and deep pressure strokes. The delicate and almost scalpel-like use of the elbows and knees, to target with precision, the aches, muscles tears and bruised bones to relieve all the pain away, is amazing just to watch.
Clear as day
Distilled Chalong Bay Rum Distillery has one of the purest and finest rums you’ll find anywhere in the South Asian region of Asia. It has some similarities with the Japanese Saki, in the fact that it is see-through and clear as day in color and viscosity, yet it can be drunk on its own without the need to put it into a cocktail. However, after a tour of the distillery, you’ll want to mix it with the exotic fruit on hand, so you’ll have the opportunity to learn how the fancy hotels mix and serve their expensive cocktails. At the cocktail workshop and bar, you can mix your own flavors and be given a taste of the most complex choices many Hollywood stars have enjoyed.
Phuket is no longer that small, quiet little island that wants to mind its own business. Now it’s a modern, jet setting, speed boating-riding, cocktail-mixing bustling island. It’s modern, yet it’s very traditional. It doesn’t bow down to the tourist tastes; it displays what it is with great pride.
Traveling is one of life’s greatest joys, but often life can get busy and travel plans can slide down the priority list. If you’re in the middle of summer, finding yourself without any special travel plans, don’t fret. It can be the perfect situation to have a last minute holiday – often there are ample savings available if you’re prepared to be a little spontaneous. It can also be a great way to solve arguments when you can’t decide where to go, simply choose the cheapest trip, or the trip that’s smack bang within your budget and you can go from there. Here are some reasons to consider a last minute holidays.
1. You May Go Somewhere You Might Not Normally Consider
Often when you’re booking last minute trips, you’ll find that some places may seem a bit overpriced as the flights or transport options have sold out of the cheaper options. This will encourage you to consider different travel destinations that can prove to be exciting! It will also provide you with a list of locations that you might not even consider searching for. For example, you can relax on a Guernsey holiday while enjoying the benefits of a last minute travel booking.
2. You Could Snag a Great Discount
Because often the last minute holidays have flights, or transport options that have not yet sold, businesses are keen to full up plane seats or hotel rooms rather than to just lose money on empty rooms. I personally love a last minute discount when I’m planning a trip, as it just helps ensure I have extra money for activities or for gifts for family members back home. Cutting down the costs of your trip before you’ve even left home is a sure fire way to ensure that you get a great value holiday!
3. The Thrill of a Last Minute Booking
There’s nothing more fun to me than spontaneously booking and planning a trip. Sometimes you just get a craving to go away somewhere new and a conversation with a loved one or friend sparks a fun conversation that ends with “Yes, we should just go!”. It’s exciting to decide to go on holiday when you weren’t planning to and is a sure fire way to ensure that your holiday actually feels like a holiday with some serious vacation time.
No matter your budget, how long you want to go for and when your free holiday time is, you can snag yourself a great last minute holiday with these travel tips.
When most people book a holiday to Australia, they only look at the east coast. After all, there are some remarkable destinations along that coast, including Sydney and Melbourne! But have you ever considered traveling out west? The main city on the west coast is gorgeous Perth. It has a strong reputation with tourists, but it doesn’t get quite as many as its cousins over in the east of the country. And that means you won’t have to deal with so many crowds!
So, ready to go and see what Perth has to offer? Here are some fun things to see and do while you are out west!
Have you always wanted to stroke a kangaroo? Or how about hold a cute koala bear? If so, then you should head straight to Perth Zoo. You’ll find lots of native wildlife, including Australia’s famous marsupials. And there are lots of other species to see as well, including giraffes, elephants, and rhinos. You don’t just have to walk around and look at the animals while you’re visiting the zoo. You can also go to a talk about the zoo’s conservation or take a tour behind the scenes!
If you want to see some of Perth’s history, you might like to take a tour of Fremantle Prison to hear some of the city’s grisliest stories! There are a few different tours you might like to take, and each one focuses on a slightly different aspect of prison life. For example, take a tunnels tour to see how prisoners used to try and escape into the prison’s underbelly. Or, if you like things a bit spooky, why not book the spine-tingling torchlight tour?!
Fancy getting out of the city for a bit? Then get a car from a car rental company and head out to The Pinnacles in Namburg National Park. It’s just a three-hour drive out of Perth. The Pinnacles are weathered rock formations that rise out of the desert and make for a really scenic hiking destination. Plus, they create an awesome backdrop for some cool Instagram snaps!
There is plenty of greenery to see in the city of Perth – you don’t have to head out to the desert to see Australian nature! Just take a stroll through Kings Park. When you are strolling through this large city park, you will be able to spot a lot of native flora and trees. You can also immerse yourself in the park’s artworks and nature by taking a walk along the Lotterywest Federation Walkway. This modern walkway features takes visitors past some of the park’s famous Aboriginal art. If you want some great city views, take the climb up to the top of the DNA tower.
Perth is a really awesome city and definitely worth visiting! In fact, I think it’s so good, it’s certainly worth seeing before you visit Sydney or Melbourne on the east coast!
So, why not book your trip to Western Australia right now?!
When you’re planning your perfect summertime getaway, what comes to mind? If you’re like me, even the suggestion of a holiday raises a myriad of good feelings and excitement. You’re probably already daydreaming about the great food you’re going to try, the sights you’re going to see, and getting away from all that stressful, boring stuff. Maybe you’ll even luck out and get a little bit of British sunshine.
But what goes into the perfect holiday? What do you need to make sure you’ve got down, to guarantee a great time? It might seem obvious, but if you arrive late wherever, and have no real plan for food, starting your holiday with pub crisps and nuts for dinner might put something of a dampener on the whole thing. We’re not saying you should over-plan, but you do need to plan a little. Here the key things to consider.
Go Someplace New
It’s true, we do all have our favourite holiday locations. Mine was always camping in Wales as a kid. But, while going somewhere new feels like something of a gamble, you’re at risk of boredom going somewhere you’ve been a million times. You can always be bored at home. Go somewhere exciting and new, and discover new things, areas and hobbies. Get out of your comfort zone, you’ll feel better for it!
The UK is absolutely full of spectacular and vibrant cities, and positively biblical countryside scenery. Whether you’re after a weekend of nature and hiking, or shopping and cocktails, you’re sure to find a great local hotel that’ll suit you and your needs to the ground. A lot of the hotel resorts in the UK offer things like luxury spas and even full golf courses! Keep an eye out and you’ll find your perfect accommodation.
Check Out Local Food Places
First of all, if you’ve got any dietary requirements, it’s worth looking ahead here. If you’re going to check out somewhere beautiful, desolate and rural, you might not find too much in the way of vegan or gluten-free cuisine in the local pubs. If yours is a special diet, then you need to take that into account.
Beyond that, make sure you try new things! Go online, see which local restaurants and cafes are true hidden gems, and take advantage of all the unbiased online reviews. Conversely, if you’re going somewhere a little more expensive than you’re accustomed to, and the budget is already tight, then make sure you’re not stuck somewhere surrounded by super expensive restaurants and few cheaper options (looking at you London!). Having to keep an eye on the budget all the time is no fun at all.
Always Do What You Enjoy
This might seem more than a little obvious, but make sure you incorporate your hobbies and pleasures into your holiday plans. It’s all well and good trying and doing new things, and expanding your horizons, but if all you want to do is fish, or play golf, or relax in a spa, set a day aside for that. Going on holiday should be all about you, and doing fun, new things, as well as old, chilled-out and relaxing ones.
I’ve travelled throughout a lot of the United States, but there’s a few reasons I keep coming back to Los Angeles. I often wonder if California has the best climate in all of the world and the truth is I haven’t found anywhere better. Couple that with the gorgeous beaches, the incredible range of healthy food options and the friendliness makes Los Angeles an incredible place to live and somewhere worthy of some #ZipcodePride.
If you’re a business, you may struggle with getting things properly delivered to your Los Angeles clients and your clients further afield. If someone inputs their address details wrong, it can result in undelivered packages, considerable delays and unhappy customers. To avoid dealing with these issues, check out an address verification service to ensure your package gets exactly where it is supposed to.
So what makes Los Angeles so great? Here are my three reasons Los Angeles rocks:
1. The Weather
Almost every day you’ll find yourself with beautiful sunshine. While locals may say they experience a winter, if you visit during their “winters” you may find them more to be like spring or summer. The great weather in Los Angeles means you can spend your weekends enjoying the beautiful beaches lining the city. Because of the great climate, you’ll find that people living in Los Angeles are active and love being outside, which is something most of us could use more of in our lives.
2. Healthy Food
Most people on Los Angeles are very health focused and this extends to their food choices. Los Angeles is a mecca for health foods such as acai bowls, smoothies and salads that actually feel like meals. The fact that there’s so much sunshine means a lot of delicious fruits grow here and in my experience the quality of food is just so much better than other cities across the United States. While In and Out burger isn’t considered a health food, it definitely tastes well healthier – and more delicious – than comparable fast food options in the states.
3. The Lifestyle
There’s so much to do in Los Angeles, whether you want to go on a hike, to the beach, shopping, to a film or a premier, an escape room, whatever you want you can find in Los Angeles. There’s a great food and night scene ensuring you’ll never have a dull day in this bustling city. It’s also an international flight hub, meaning you can often find outrageously cheap flight deals to Asia, Europe and South America.
Known as one of the top tourist destinations in the world, Miami is home to dozens of beautiful beaches and a thriving nightlife. Miami’s year-round sunshine makes the city the perfect vacation spot for anyone looking to soak up some sun. But while the city is obviously known for its world-class beaches, if you’re looking for something a bit more adventurous than sunbathing and enjoying a piña colada, then you’ve come to the right place.
Make the most of your next trip to Miami by setting out on one of these trails to enjoy the area’s unique habitats. You won’t be disappointed.
Matheson Hammock Trail
[Image: Jimmy Baikovicius/Flickr]
A lesser-known trail in Miami, the Matheson Hammock Trail is a hidden gem that offers visitors a glimpse into the area’s natural history. The rugged hike, which is reminiscent of the what the Miami suburb Coral Gables once looked like, is overgrown with tropical trees and crawling with wildlife. This trail showcases one of the remaining pieces of Miami’s grand hammock — a rare habitat that any outdoor enthusiast should witness. Keep in mind that this hike does contain rough terrain, so you’ll want to use your best judgment while exploring.
Bear Cut Preserve
Are you in the mood for something a little less strenuous? Located on the shores of Biscanye Bay, the Bear Cut Preserve provides visitors with several trails that intertwine throughout the park. Behind the nature center is the 1.3-mile Osprey Beach Trail that takes you on a leisurely walk along the dunes. At the end of the trail, you’ll be rewarded with a breathtaking scenic view of Key Biscanye. Also worth noting is the tropical hardwood hammock or the 6,000-year-old mangrove forest reef, both of which are well worth the visit.
[Image: Phillip Pessar/Flickr]
Find solitude in the heart of downtown Miami at Simpson Park. Just a few blocks away from towering skyscrapers, Simpson Park was created purely to preserve part of the native hammock. While in the park, you’ll find wildly growing trees overtaking the walking paths — making you feel as if you’re in the jungle. And for those feeling extra daring, you can stray away from the designated path (which is allowed) to more thoroughly discover the park.
Bayshore Loop Trail
Take a walk through the mangrove-lined edge of Florida Bay and explore the coastal prairie habitat on the Bayshore Loop Trail. Although the trail is no longer currently maintained, visitors are still welcome to make their way along the Bayshore Loop. Along the trail, be sure to keep an eye out for remnants of buttonwoods from the last storm, as well as native birds that might be wading around. Further down the trail you’ll witness what is left of Flamingo’s original fishing village, a small cistern that reflects the area’s history. The 1.3-mile hike is a nice taste of what the area’s longer trails have to offer.
Whether you prefer a quiet stroll on the overgrown paths of Simpson Beach or you’d rather try something a bit more rugged, these Miami trails are sure to satisfy your desire to get out and enjoy the outdoors.
After an exciting day of exploring Miami’s trails, you want a comfortable place to sleep. Holiday Inn is both comfortable and conveniently located downtown, keeping you in close proximity to some of Miami’s trails and other fun attractions.
With summer in full swing, it’s the best time of year to get outside and enjoy all that nature around you. We know that the summer months in the UK are often not exactly what we’re dreaming of, but with the right gear you can enjoy the weather no matter what the weather is up to outside. I recently read some facts gathered by Chums that suggest 92% of people spend time outdoors to relax and rejuvenate themselves. Wanna learn more about what gear to include so that you can get out in nature, relax and get fit? Well, let’s get #DressedToGo!
- Cut Out the Plastic
We know that there’s too much plastic in the environment and many of us recycle in the home, but do you find yourself buying plastic bottle after plastic bottle? Not only is plastic not healthy to drink out of, the actual bottles are no good for the environment. Invest in a high quality, reusable drink bottle perhaps made from Aluminium or at least a plastic that’s free from BPA and other harmful chemicals. This will be good for your health as well as the environment!
- Choose Breathable Fabrics
No matter whether you are talking a nice walk through nature, or whether you’re powering up a hill on your bicycle, there’s a good chance you’re going to sweat at least a little. Choosing high quality breathable fabrics will help you cool down, sweat (and smell) less, as well as feel more comfortable overall.
- Think About Your Feet
Having sturdy, comfortable footwear will do more than just feel good. It can help prevent you from injury. If your shoes have good enough support for your ankles, they will prevent your ankle rolling if you lose your footing – which happens to me all the time when I’m out in nature, especially when going down hill. You want a shoe that is comfortable to wear for a long period of time, too, so that you don’t get achey feet when you’re outside for a good length of time. As a general rule I like to replace my sports shoes once they start showing signs of wear and tear. Invest in a good pair of shoes because this is what supports your entire body! www.chums.co.uk/menswear offers a great range of shoes, including a line of Cushion Walk Shoes ensuring you’re comfortable no matter how long you’re on your feet.The greatest thing about the outdoors is that they’re free to enjoy. There’s nothing better than a walk around a gorgeous park or nature reserve with friends or family members. Or if you’re a little more adventurous, perhaps a hard core cycle downhill! Whatever your vice, make sure you invest in good gear so you can be happy, healthy and comfortable on your next outdoor adventure!