All About Atlantic Way

Officially starts in Kinsale, County Cork and follows the path around the west coast and finishing in Malin Head, County Donegal.

Wild Atlantic Way route is a major draw of visiting Ireland with covering some of Ireland’s top attractions such as Cliffs of Moher, Ring of Kerry and Dingle. The best way to experience is a hiring a car for a couple weeks to thoroughly enjoy the drive with the luxury of taking your time and stopping whenever a photography opportunity presents itself.

County Cork is located in southwest Ireland, and this driving route starts in Kinsale and follows the N71 towards Baltimore, stopping at Clonakilty.

There are smaller routes to take from Wild Atlantic Way and highlights;

  • Ring of Kerry
  • Slea Head
  • Sky Road
  • Ring of Beara

KinsaleA colourful village that worthy to spend a couple hours walking through the small side roads & alleys. Being located on the coast offers fresh fish to be had, check out Fishy Fishy restaurant or their takeaway.

Nearby is the Charles Fort which you could walk the coastal trail from Kinsale to the fort via Scilly Walk, a 6km round trip. The Charles Fort is a 17th century military based with a star-shaped fort on the water’s edge.

Mizen Head

The most Southerly point of Ireland looking out to the Atlantic seascape with an iconic Mizen footbridge which you can cross. Great clifftop scenery.

Ring of Kerry

The Ring of Kerry is a 179km loop in the southwest of County Kerry, a popular route for visitors to take by a tourist bus or their own car. Commonly driven counter-clockwise to avoid being stuck behind a coach – an important note to take as you would want to see the beautiful views.

Skellig Ring & Islands

A detour off the Ring of Kerry drive, an 18km route taking in the views of the famous Skellig Michael islands which has recently been featured in Star Wars films. Do visit Valentia Island for 360 viewpoints from Geokaun Mountains.

Kylemore Abbey

Kylemore Abbey & Walled Garden is located on a beautiful castle grounds with a picturesque entrance. Located in County Galway in the Connemara National Park.

Sky Road

A small route with large scenic views, this is an 11km sky road touring route starting from Clifden in Connemara region. Follow the signs for Sky Road to enjoy fantastic views of the coastline, old coast guard, bays and more.

Slieve League

Actually higher clifftops than Cliffs of Moher and equally matching dramatic clifftops. This free clifftop attraction is one of the highest in Europe and worth a visit without the Cliffs of Moher crowds. Located in County Donegal.

Planning Family Summer Getaways

As soon as the temperature rises, school’s done for the year and about any cold beverage or dessert is being craved, you’ll know it is time to dust off your straw hat, swimming gears and of course try fitting in those swimwear. Yes, it’s summer! The one season we will be enjoying the 2 month vacation from school as well as look for that family destination to savor the sun, the sand and the sea.

But, before we all get excited, let me give you tips on the travel essentials to bring for your chosen (if not favorite) summer getaway. Grab your pen and paper and take down this list.

Traveling with Family Must-Haves:

Travel Documents. If you plan to travel here in the Philippines, make sure you bring your valid IDs for documentation of possible verification. If you will be travelling outside the country, then passports, visa must come in handy.

Funds. Importantly, you must bring cash and/or your credit cards for all the payments. However, you must be cautious enough not to bring too much cash at hand as we know robbers may be eyeing on you. So basically, practice being safe at all times specially when withdrawing at ATMs. Better yet, keep a note in your mobile phone or a little notebook where you write down your budget and possible expenses so you would be able to track down in/outs of your money and keep the whole vacation on budget.

Medicines, medical tools and first aid kit. If you or any of your family member have an existing medical condition, make sure to always bring enough and a little extra of the maintenance medicines. You may not be able to find an immediate pharmacy on the place you will going and you may need prescription as well, so keep that with the medicine kit. You can place this in a pouch or a small bag that you can bring with you at all times while traveling. This goes with your first aid kit. At least, make sure that the first aid kit contains medicines for common illness like headache, stomach pain, loose bowel movement, anti-allergy as well as band aids, betadine iodine, alcohol, cotton swabs and a nail cutter. You will need to bring also blood pressure monitor and blood sugar monitor in case you have diabetic loved ones.

When traveling with kids or babies, this will be a different story. You will pack another set of essentials just for them. Clothes, diapers, wipes, feeding bottles, sterilizer, just no name a few. So keep that in the list too!

When you will be commuting for the travel, make sure you have all commute stops planned. If you will need to be traveling by plane, you must be making the booking ahead of time. While, when you travel by land, make sure you will know the bus stops, etc. And when you will be driving, Google maps and GPS will be your best friend. Plan and make your research ahead of time. And when you are driving, make sure that your motor vehicle is at its best condition with enough fuel, air and water.

Accommodation at destination. Make sure you have booked ahead for resorts and hotels as they might not entertain you via walk in. Sometimes, you can save time and money by booking or making your reservations online.

Clothes, swim wears. Make sure you bring enough appropriate clothes. To save some space in your bags though, consider bringing lightweight clothes and learn how to pack smartly.

Gadgets, camera. What would capture your memorable summer but bringing in your mobile phones for your selfies! Bring in your digital cameras or action cameras too! Keep your gadgets in waterproof pouches in case you want to bring them while swimming.

Padlocks. For security reasons, make sure your bags have padlocks. Make sure you attend to you belongings as just about any establishment have no responsibility on your belongings in case of loss.

Snacks, water. Due to the hot season, we tend to be dehydrated. So make sure to pack some snacks and water while travelling to fill up that energy.

Toiletries, cosmetics. These are important too. Make sure you have napkins, tissue paper, wipes. Your toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, body wash, shampoo, conditioner. Sunblock and sunburn recovery lotion. You may want to have travel kits where you can keep these essentials so you won’t need to bring the big bottles of shampoo. Just take a portion and place in these travel kit containers and you can refill those on your next travel destination.

This is my list when we go traveling. I will be making a series to this to include some more tips on my next blog. You may need more than this essentials, make sure to customize and tailor this list to your own needs and situation. Meanwhile, enjoy you summer destination and make memories!

Why You Should Going To France

France is the undisputed leader in international visitors, totaling upwards of 84 million a year. This surpasses the US, with around 75 million, and far outpaces Britain with around 32 million. What are some of the reasons France is on so many travelers’ bucket lists? And which of these reasons might inspire you to follow suit? As a start, consider these three motivations for taking a trip to France.

Reason #1: Cultural Discovery

A trip to France is endlessly entertaining and fascinating. France is proud of its heritage and celebrates its history. Everywhere you go you will find atmosphere and old-world charm and historic buildings with stories to tell. You will constantly be reminded that you are walking in the footsteps of kings and artists, conquerors and queens. Every day will be filled with discoveries.

A trip around the Loire Valley to visit Châteaux will take you along the travel route of the extravagant 16th century King Françoise I, who mounted up astonishing national debts in order to live large and well. His castle in Amboise, perched high above the river, is a source of many stories. There are the large round turrets, with wide spiral roadways inside to allow horse-drawn carriages to ride up into the castle grounds to deliver its passengers-especially handy when one of the queens was pregnant. Here on the expansive lawns, firework and festival displays were performed, designed for Françoise by his cherished friend Leonardo da Vinci. Da Vinci himself lived out the final years of his life across the street from the king, in a fascinating mansion that is now filled with models of his many ground-breaking inventions. A secret tunnel connects the abodes of these two close friends, used for late-night visits between the king and his brilliant buddy.

In Blois, Françoise added an elegant wing to the already impressive palace, accessed via an exquisite external stone staircase. Here you will see the study of Catherine de Medici, wife to Françoise’s son and successor, Henri. The wood paneled walls provided her with secret hiding places for her acclaimed collection of poisons, the political “solutions” of those perilous times.

Then there is the stunning Chenonceau, with its glorious gardens and the vast ballrooms that extend out over the river. Initially this gem was home to King Henri’s mistress, Diane de Poitiers. But when Henri was killed by a large splinter in the eye during a joust, his wife, Catherine de Medici, threw Diane out of her Château and took it over for herself. Not to be outdone by the mistress, Catherine then proceeded to construct an even more splendid garden on the opposite side of the chateau from Diane’s, and an even grander balcony than Diane’s to overlook it. She placed a huge, glaring portrait of herself, looming over the bed in what had once been Diane’s bedroom. And she had the initials on the tiles reengraved, replacing the “D” for “Diane,” intertwined with an “H” for “Henri,” with a “C” for “Catherine.” This was a woman determined to make her point. As you enter these lives from long ago, and experience their luxurious surroundings, you will gain a true and immediate sense of the culture and the history.

And on it goes. The people, the history, the passion, and the humanity… All of these surround you on a trip to France. You will be intrigued and awed, captivated and enthralled. Every day of your visit will be intensely interesting, as well as surrounded by carefully orchestrated beauty.

Reason #2: A Feast for the Senses

Your senses will be stunned for the entire time you are in France. The sights are beautiful beyond description. The Eiffel Tower in Paris rises up like a giant erector set, with an elevator to take you to the top for views out over the Seine and the city. At night the tower is set aglow, best to be viewed from a boat as it drifts along the Seine, passing under one lovely bridge after another.

The Orsay, once an elegant turn-of-the-century train station that was built to welcome guests to the 1900 Paris Exposition Universelle, now houses a startling collection of impressionist art – Monet, Renoir, van Gogh, Dégas, Gauguin, Cézanne, Seurat – within a building that is itself an historic, architectural treasure. Here you will be able to lunch in the grand ballroom of the former grand hotel attached to the train station, and look through the glass of the giant clock that faces the river and makes this building distinctively easy to spot.

There is more and more to come… The glories of Notre Dame. The remarkable stained-glass windows of Saint Chapelle Chapel… The beautiful flowers and statuary of Tuileries Gardens… The onslaught of visual sensations of the Champs-Élysées… The towering Arch de Triomphe, facing the smaller Arch in front of the Louvre at the other end of the five-mile grand boulevard where Napoleon pictured himself leading a march of his victorious armies.

There will be the glorious tastes of the food and wine. You will hear marvelous music of all sorts, from the Vivaldi at Saint Chapelle, to the lively piano bars and boat bars along the left bank of the Seine in Paris and atop Mont St. Michel, to the mighty organ of Notre Dame. You will walk through flower markets, vivid with colors and scents, and shop at weekly markets, alive with people and all manner of tempting offerings.

This assault to the senses will remain with you in memory long after your travels are over.

Reason #3: Intro to the Good Life

The last, but certainly not the least, reason to visit France is that it will introduce you to another, and a better, way of life. You will experience a different manner of interpersonal interaction in France – more engaged, curious, outgoing, and animated. The French truly recognize the importance of enjoying the best of life.

Here dining is a delightful experience, not just a stop to refuel. Food is an art form, combined always with the ideal wines to enhance the meal. Waiters take pride in their work, striving to make dining a memorable occasion by offering up their expertise, and carefully guarding your right to take all the time you need to enjoy your meal without feeling rushed.

People in France are carefully polite with each other, and will be with you. You always will be addressed as ma’am or sir, and asked with a please, followed by a thank you. Cordiality is not only suggested in France, it is expected and omnipresent. You will quickly grow to anticipate and appreciate this.

From the first moment you walk down a street passing all the umbrella-shielded outdoor tables of the cafés, you will notice that this is a culture where people gather together to enjoy each other’s company. Old, young, families, singles, rich, modest, fashionable, artistic, intellectual – everyone is out in the squares and along the avenues, drinking in cafés and eating in restaurants. It becomes easy to join in and be stimulated by the lively, friendly atmosphere. Musicians wander the streets, from old men playing accordions outside the restaurants, to full jazz bands playing in city squares. And because the house wine is so inexpensive, stopping off for a glass or a carafe is a customary, not an exceptional, occurrence.

At the tables that surround you at these cafés, you will notice couples engaged in animated conversation, looking intently into each other’s eyes. France is a culture of philosophy and art, science and technology, style and literature, and of love. As you take all this in, you may begin to find it has an impact on you and how you yourself relate to others. You’ll notice yourself listening more actively, expressing yourself more earnestly and clearly, paying closer attention, acting more considerately, showing more curiosity and interest.

The luxury of time for all this gathering together is in part thanks to the French commitment to keeping an optimal balance between work and life. Shops close for lunch so workers can focus their attention on enjoying a good meal and the company of friends and colleagues. Employees who work 39 or more hours a week must receive more than the legally-required five weeks of vacation per year.

While you are traveling in France, you will come to enjoy and to expect this higher level of connection, this enhanced appreciation of food and wine, this better balance between work and life. You will never forget what you have learned about a different, and better, way of living life.

The Sum of these Three Parts

Taken together, the cultural discovery plus the feast for the senses plus the introduction to the good life, create a travel opportunity that is second to none. You will have a great trip to France, particularly if you travel independently and avoid the bus, possibly by using a preplanned trip-in-a-book to guide your explorations and adventures, and to ensure that you have the full experience while you are there.

Your trip will enrich you. It will refresh you. And it will change you. When you return home, you will find yourself incorporating elements from your travels into your lifestyle, and plotting to return to France.

All About Museums in Alexandria

Serving as the capital of Egypt and an important commercial and cultural hub for hundreds of years, Alexandria, located to the North of Cairo, overlooking the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, is a city that possesses its own unique magic! Several travel packages in Egypt include a one or two-days visit to Alexandria

Established in the 4th century BC by Alexander the Great during his journey towards the Temple of the Oracle of Amun in Siwa, Alexandria has much to offer to travelers coming from various regions around the world to spend a vacation in Egypt.

In Egypt, a country that hosts a huge number of museums, Alexandria, with its old diverse history, has some quite magnificent museums illustrating different periods of the history of the city and various aspects of the life of Alexandria.

Today, we would be pointing out some of the most interesting museums in Alexandria that we recommend for tourists who travel to Egypt to visit and explore during their holidays.

The Greco Roman Museum

The Greco Roman Museum is perhaps the most interesting museum in Alexandria. Established during the Greek period and flourished under the rule of the Romans, the Greco Roman period witnessed the most glorious days of Alexandria. The museum hosts many displays illustrating this remarkable period since the establishment of the city and till the beginning of the Islamic era. The Greco Roman Museum is often included in many tours to Egypt.

Although the museum is closed for many years, the director of the Greco Roman Museum asserted that it would be officially reopened very soon. Many tours to Egypt, which include a visit to Alexandria, would have a visit to the museum scheduled for its notable historical significance.

The Greco Roman Museum was officially opened in October 1892 as one of the oldest in Egypt. However, due to the large number of displays and exhibits, the museums was transferred to its current location in Fouad Street during the reign of Khedive Abbas Helmi II. With 11 huge halls and 27 exhibition galleries, the Greco Roman Museum grab the attention with many tourists who travel to Egypt.

The Museum of the New Library of Alexandria

The ideas of establishing the Museum of Antiquities in the Library of Alexandria emerged when a group of historical pieces, dating back to the Roman and Byzantine periods, was discovered in the location were the new library of Alexandria was founded. Today, this museum welcomes many travelers coming from all over the globe to enjoy their vacations in Egypt.

The museum was officially opened in October 2002. The displays were carefully chosen to reflect the diversity of the history of Alexandria including displays from the Pharaonic, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, and contemporary periods. There is also a wonderful collection of antiquities that was discovered under the sea in and around Alexandria. A visit to the museum is quite recommended for any travelers spending his vacations in Egypt who is fond of history and art.

The National Museum of Alexandria

The National Museum of Alexandria is one of the most interesting in the city. Established in 2003 during the ruling period of former Egyptian president, Hosni Mubarak, the museum hosts around 1800 distinctive displays that tell the story of the city of Alexandria since its establishment and until the revolution of 1952. The museum welcomes hundreds of tourists who visit Egypt every day.