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PERJANTAI, 23. LOKAKUUTA 2020
LAOS TRAVEL - FIFTHY SHADES OF GREEN

Laos Luxury Destination Guide - Sofitel Hotel

Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.

 

An Authentic Asia

Laos cherishes many of the traditions that have disappeared in a frenzy of development elsewhere in the region. It's hard to believe somnolent Vientiane is an Asian capital, and there's a timeless quality to rural life, where stilt houses and paddy fields look like they are straight out of a movie set. Magical Luang Prabang bears witness to hundreds of saffron-robed monks gliding through the streets every morning in a call to alms, one of the region’s iconic images. Intrepid travellers will discover a country untainted by mass tourism and Asia in slow motion.

A Kaleidoscope of People

Laos is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the region, reflecting its geographic location as a crossroads of Asia. The hardy Hmong people live off the land in the remote mountains of the north, Kahu and Alak elders in the south still have traditional face tattoos, and the Katang villagers of central Laos sleep with forest spirits. Whether it is the cities of the lowlands or the villages of the highlands, Laos offers wonderful opportunities for local interaction. However, change is coming as a new high-speed railway will cut across the country, criss-crossing some of these isolated communities.

Fifty Shades of Green

With its dark and brooding jungle, glowing emerald rice fields, and glistening tea leaves that blanket the mountains, the landscape in Laos changes shades of green like a chameleon. But it's not just the luscious landscapes that are green: when it comes to ecotourism, Laos is leading the way in Southeast Asia. Protected areas blanket the landscape in many of the more remote areas of the country, and community-based trekking initiatives combine these spectacular natural attractions with the chance to experience the 'real Laos' with a village homestay, helping contribute to the local community and preserve the environment.

Eclectic Asia

Travellers rave about Laos for a reason. Adventure seekers can lose themselves in underground river caves, on jungle ziplines or while climbing karsts. Nature enthusiasts can take a walk on the wild side and spot exotic animals such as gibbons or elephants. Culture lovers can explore ancient temples and immerse themselves in Lao spiritual life. Foodies can spice up their lives with a Lao cooking class or go gourmand in the French-accented cities. And if all this sounds a little too strenuous, then unwind with a spa session or yoga class. Laos has something for everyone.

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT LAOS

Laos is a small land-locked country, with two main distinct weather seasons: dry and wet.  No matter what time of year you travel to Laos, you’ll find that each season paints the country in a different colour. And with attractions year-round, there’s no wrong time to go, as such. However, for dry, warm weather and for getting the best out of the activities on offer, broadly speaking, the best time to visit Laos is November–January.

At this time of the year temperatures range from an average 14–26°C, and there’s little to no rain. Balmy days make this an ideal time for adventurous treks, bike tours, and boat rides. This is also a good time for exploring the Mekong River, as water levels from the previous months’ rainfall makes river travel pleasant, safe and easy. You can also go swimming and tubing in waterfalls and rivers, as well as explore mystical Buddhist shrines and mysterious caves.

Typically, the climate is at its coldest in the northern and eastern parts of the country during this period. In regions higher up, including Luang Namtha and Phongsal, temperatures can get as low as 5°C in the evenings. So carry extra clothes when visiting these parts. Vientiane and Luang Prabang witness temperatures around 24°C, while Pakse and other parts of Laos’ southern region soar to around 30°C.

WEATHER 

Laos has a tropical climate, with a hot and wet season from May–October and a dry, cooler season from November–April.

For most of the dry season – until February – the weather in Laos is mild, although the south is hotter (hitting 31°C at times, compared with highs of 27°C in Luang Prabang and just 22°C in the far north). March and April are considerably warmer.

August sees the highest humidity levels and greatest rainfall.

Note that the climate in some northern areas – notably Phongsali and Hua Phan (Sam Neua) – can be surprisingly temperamental, even in the hot season, so you could have one scorcher of a day, followed by a cold, wet day that’s enough to convince you you’re no longer in Southeast Asia.

BEST TIME TO VISIT LAOS

December is arguably the best time to visit Laos for all-round favourable weather. The pleasant and dry conditions are ideal for various outdoor activities, such as hiking, cycling, exploring caves and river travel. It’s also a good time to visit religious and cultural sites.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO LAOS

As Laos is often part of a wider trip to the region, many people choose to travel there overland, with the crossings from Thailand near Vientiane and at Houayxai the most popular options. There are currently no direct flights to Laos from outside of Asia – most visitors fly via Bangkok, from where it takes just over an hour to reach Vientiane, and just under two hours to Luang Prabang. Connections are also possible from Chiang Mai and Udon Thani (Thailand), Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi (Vietnam), Siem Reap (Cambodia), Kunming (China) and Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia). Due to the lack of direct flights, it can be quite expensive to fly to Laos, though this is more than compensated for by the low cost of living and travelling once in the country. 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND LAOS

Transport in Laos is generally very good value, but journeys can take a lot longer than distances on a map might suggest.

 

Air Laos has an extensive domestic flight network and this can save considerable time on a short visit. Domestic flights to smaller airports suffer fairly frequent cancellations due to fog and, in March, heavy smoke during the slash-and-burn season. During the holiday season it's best to book ahead as flights can fill fast. At other times, when flights are more likely to be cancelled, confirm your flight is still departing a day or two before.

Boat Rivers are the lifeblood of Laos, making boat journeys an important element of the transport network.

Bus Laos has some smart buses operating on major routes out of Vientiane, but venture into remote areas and vehicles are as old as the hills.

Car For those with a more flexible budget, a rented car with driver is the smoothest way to cover a lot of ground in a limited amount of time.

Bicycle The stunningly beautiful roads and light, relatively slow traffic in most towns and on most highways make Laos arguably the best country for cycling in Southeast Asia. Simple single-speed bicycles can be hired in most places that see a decent number of tourists, usually costing about 20,000K (1.82 eur) per day. Better mountain bikes will cost from 30,000K (2.74 eur) to 80,000K (7.29 eur) per day.

Boat More than 4600km of navigable rivers are the highways and byways of traditional Laos, the main thoroughfares being the Mekong, Nam Ou, Nam Khan, Nam Tha, Nam Ngum and Se Kong. The Mekong is the longest and most important route and is navigable year-round between Huay Xai in the north and Savannakhet in the south, though new dams make this increasingly difficult without changing boats. Smaller rivers accommodate a range of smaller boats, from dugout canoes to 'bomb boats' made from war detritus.

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN LAOS

 

  • Sabaidee Valley​

Enjoying a natural surrounding on the Bolaven Plateau, Sabaidee Valley is just a 10-minute drive from the Tad Fane Waterfall and features a restaurant, a coffee shop and spacious villas with balcony and nature views. The air-conditioned villas are fitted with a flat-screen TV, a living area, a refrigerator, a minibar, an electric kettle and a bathroom with bath tub and free toiletries. The restaurant at the Sabaidee Valley Resort serves traditional Thai and Laos cuisine. Guests can buy various souvenirs in the shop on site and sample local coffee, made from organic coffee beans grown in the Bolaven Plateau at the coffee shop. Shuttle services can be organised on request and free public parking is possible at the property. The Tad Yueang Waterfall is a 15-minute drive away and the Tad Pha Suam Waterfall can be reached within a 25-minute drive. The city centre of Pakse is a 40-minute drive away.

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TORSTAI, 22. LOKAKUUTA 2020
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Trinidad & Tobago makes Fodor's 2019 'Go' list of travel destinations |  Loop News

Trinidad and Tobago are an exercise in beautiful contradiction. In Trinidad, pristine mangrove swamps and rainforested hills sit side by side with smoke-belching oil refineries and unpretty industrial estates. Tobago has everything you’d expect from a Caribbean island, with palm trees and white sand aplenty, yet it’s relatively unchanged by the tourist industry. Combined, this twin-island republic offers unparalleled birdwatching; first-class diving; and luxuriant rainforests perfect for hiking and waterfall swimming. Then there's the electric nightlife and a fabulous Carnival, easily the biggest and best of the region’s annual blowouts. And thanks to the legacy of TnT's melting-pot population, the cuisine is a foodie dream, from sensational curries to the freshest of fish.

The southern Caribbean islands of Trinidad and Tobago are a lesson in contrast. Trinidad, the larger of the two, is bustling with commerce and diversity. A cosmopolitan oasis of Creole culture and the birthplace of the steel drum and the limbo, Trinidad brims with natural resources like gas and oil. Its cultural eclecticism and, in some places, astonishing wealth, is all but unparalleled throughout the Caribbean. And then there's the sleepy island of Tobago. Just northeast, this island is rich in natural wonders and immaculate white-sand beaches, but it lacks the urban-sophisticate personality of its other half.

Trinidad has several beaches, but it's Tobago's shores that are more renowned for their variety and beauty. Its pristine beaches line almost every side of the island and they range from crowded to desolate and festive to romantic. Trinidad's main draw is its lush flora and fauna, particularly its scarlet ibises — the blood orange flamingos that call the island's jungles home. But starting in late February, the island does a 180 when it pours on the glitter and turns up the volume for one of the best Carnival parties in all the Caribbean.

But don’t expect anyone to hold your hand here. The oil and gas industry leaves tourism low on the priority list, so it’s up to you to take a deep breath, jump in and enjoy the mix.

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

The best time to visit Trinidad and Tobago is from January to May when the skies stay clear. Although the islands aren't on the hurricane belt, afternoon rain showers are daily occurrences from June to December. Hotels lower their rates to account for rainy weather during this wet season. At least the weather stays pleasant year-round: There's little humidity and average temps hover in the low 80s.

January-May - Compared to Tobago, Trinidad's hotel prices are fairly stable this time of year. But rates do spike in January and February due to the Trinidad Carnival. Despite the price jump, it's still a great time to see these islands. There will be very little rain, and temperatures rest in the mid-80s.

June-December - Although there's little chance of hurricanes, it's still pretty wet from June to December. Hotel deals are easier to find, but keep in mind that a lot of European travelers visit Tobago during this time of year. To ensure you score a good deal, make your reservations at least three months in advance.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Though they don’t get as many budget services as more touristic Caribbean islands, Trinidad and Tobago are served by regular international flights from the UK, US and Canada,Europe as well as South and Central America and the rest of the Caribbean. The main airport is Piarco International Airport on Trinidad, approximately 25 km south east of Port of Spain. And because Trinidad and Tobago are linked by inexpensive twenty-minute domestic services, it’s worth researching flights to both islands, even if you only plan on spending time on one of them. If you’re planning to visit just Tobago, booking a package might be your best option. There are legions of specialist companies who can arrange these, often at a lower rate than you’d get booking flight and accommodation independently. As Trinidad is less geared towards tourists, there are fewer deals available beyond birdwatching or Carnival packages, though Tobago-oriented companies sometimes give the option for a few days in Trinidad. 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

The best way to get around Trinidad and Tobago is by car, which you can rent at either Trinidad's Piarco International Airport (POS) or Tobago's Arthur Napoleon Raymond Robinson International Airport (TAB). If you don't plan to explore much, you can get by just fine with the cheap taxis. Buses are also available but are rather unreliable. When you're ready to switch islands, head down to the docks at Port of Spain or Scarborough and board one of the private ferries.

 

Car - If you're staying in Port of Spain, Trinidad, you'll be able to rely on the taxis and your own two feet. If you're planning on visiting Tobago, a rental car is a must (as the island's transportation is as developed as its cousin's). When renting, ask for a vehicle with four-wheel-drive — the roads can get rough. And inquire about auto insurance, as both islands' driving style is more aggressive than you may have experienced before.

Taxi - Taxis look like regular passenger cars with one main distinction: license plates start with the letter "H." You can catch a ride at your hotel, but your fare will probably be more expensive. Instead, go wait at one of the taxi stands marked on street corners or hail a cab directly off the street. Taxis aren't metered so be sure to agree on a price before getting into the vehicle. You should pay the equivalent of $1 USD for most one-way trips.

Bus - The islands' Public Transport Service Corporation operates bus routes that serve Trinidad's major cities. However, the buses follow set routes, and there is no set timetable. Travelers can also take the route taxis (taxicabs that follow a specific route) available on both islands. Tickets are available at most bus terminals. Keep in mind that drivers don't accept cash or credit cards. Tobago also has an inexpensive bus service, but these are unreliable as well. Routes start in Scarborough's bus terminal, a short walk from the ferry terminal, and run to Crown Point, Plymouth and most villages on the island starting around 6 a.m.

Ferry - The Port Authority of Trinidad and Tobago offers express ferries for inter-island travel. The trip takes a little less than three hours with a one-way fare costing about $8 USD. Cheaper conventional ferry service is also available for about $6 USD but this trip takes nearly six hours. Trinidad's ferry dock is located in Port of Spain; Tobago’s is in Scarborough. Passengers must check in three hours before sailing if bringing a vehicle, otherwise two hours ahead of time is sufficient.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

 

  • Starfish Tobago

This oceanfront resort is set in Scarborough, Tobago, just 8 km from the city centre. It offers buffet-style dining, poolside bars and recreation options that include scuba diving and deep-sea fishing. Modern rooms provide private balconies with ocean views. Guests at Starfish Tobago can enjoy snorkelling or kayaking in the Caribbean Sea. Bike rentals are also available to explore the property and its tropical gardens. Starfish Tobago guest rooms are styled with light colours and feature a small seating area. A TV and a safety deposit box are also included. The traditional Kiskadee Restaurant serves buffet dinner, with an optional à la carte menu, while the Courlanders Deck restaurant opens for breakfast and lunch overlooking the beach. Later, guests can sip creative cocktails at the swim-up Surf Bar or Crusoe Bar. This property is about a 20-minute drive from Crown Point International Airport. A 9 and 18-hole golf course is also nearby.

Gallery image of this property

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Coco Reef Resort & Spa

Located on the beachfront in Crown Point, Coco Reef Resort & Spa offers an outdoor pool, lush gardens and a luxury spa. The air-conditioned rooms have private balconies with garden or sea views. Rooms at the Coco Reef Resort feature bright, tropical-style décor and cable TV. Each room comes with a kettle, a minibar and a private bathroom with a bath and shower. Coco Reef Resort & Spa offers an à la carte restaurant, as well as meeting facilities, a tour desk and luggage storage. Free parking is available on site. A wide range of activities can be enjoyed in the surroundings, including diving and snorkelling. Shops and restaurants can be found within 300 metres, while Tobago ANR Robinson International Airport is 3.5 km away.

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  • Villas at Stonehaven

The Villas at Stonehaven is only a 5-minutes' drive from the Stonehaven Bay and features accommodations with ocean views, free WiFi and a private pool. Public parking is available for free. Each villa may accommodate from 2 to 6 adults and each bedroom has its own bathroom with shower offering free toiletries. All Villas are equipped with bedrooms offering air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen with a dishwasher and seating and dining areas which are outdoors on a covered patio. Cable TV is available. The on-site restaurant, Pavilion, has an à la carte service of Caribbean-style and Continental cuisine. Golfing is available at the Mt Irvine Bay Golf Course which is 5 minutes’ drive away. Windsurfing, water skiing and scuba diving are some of the activities that are available at Stonehaven Bay. The Villas also offer massage services and facilities for small gatherings or meetings. The Arthur Napoleon Raymond Robinson Airport is 8 km or 8 km from the Villas.

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Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Tropikist Beach Hotel and Resort

Tropikist Beach Hotel and Resort features a restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, a bar and shared lounge in Crown Point. Featuring a garden, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The property has a hot tub, evening entertainment and a 24-hour front desk. The hotel offers a continental or buffet breakfast. Tropikist Beach Hotel and Resort offers a terrace. The area is popular for cycling, and bike hire and car hire are available at the accommodation. Diamond is 9 km from Tropikist Beach Hotel and Resort.

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  • Mount Irvine Bay Resort

Mount Irvine Bay Resort has a restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, a bar and shared lounge in Grafton. With a garden, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. All rooms at the hotel are fitted with a seating area and a flat-screen TV with cable channels. All units have a desk. Guests at Mount Irvine Bay Resort can enjoy a continental or a à la carte breakfast. Diamond is 6 km from the accommodation.

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  • Barceló Bávaro Palace All Inclusive

Nestled on Bavaro Beach in the Dominican Republic's Punta Cana region, this all-inclusive resort is part of a select 2-hotel resort complex. It features 2 km of private beach and a coral reef. An iPod docking station and a flat-screen TV are included in all rooms at Barcelo Bavaro Palace All Inclusive. They also include a spa bath, a minibar, and a balcony. Guests at Barcelo Bavaro Palace All Inclusive can visit the 24-hour casino, the 18-hole golf course, or the world-renowned spa. The resort offers a train to transport guests around the property. The Barceló Bávaro Palace hotel has been awarded the Green Globe Certification for its sustainable tourism practices for two years. The all-inclusive program at Bavaro Palace includes breakfast, lunch and dinner at one of the 12 restaurants in the complex. Dining options include Japanese, Italian, French, and Mexican food. Punta Cana International Airport is 20.1 km from Barcelo Bavaro Palace All Inclusive. Santo Domingo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is 201.2 km away.

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  • Royalton Splash Punta Cana Resort & Spa - All Inclusive

Grand Memories Punta Cana All Inclusive is a property that features a splash park, outdoor pools, children’s playground and a kid's and teen's club. This all-inclusive resort offers free Wi-Fi access and beach access. The air-conditioned rooms at Memories Splash have cable TV, a minibar, a balcony or terrace and the bathroom that includes free toiletries. The resort has several restaurants offering Mexican and Italian cuisine, buffet service, an ice-cream parlor, a café and 11 different bars. Grand Memories Punta Cana All Inclusive also features a fitness centre, pin-pong and pool tables, sailboats, aqua-aerobics lessons, dance lessons, Spanish lessons, volleyball and water polo, among others. The kid's and teen's clubs are open from 09:30 until 18:00. Palma Real Shopping Village is 20 minutes’ drive from the resort, and Punta Cana International airport is 30 minutes’ drive away. When booking more that 6 rooms, different policies and additional supplements may apply the reservations will be charged in full after 3 days of booking made.

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  • Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort

Situated on San Juan’s Isla Verde Beach, this resort offers luxurious rooms with a private balcony featuring full or partial ocean views. Facilities include outdoor pools and a 24-hour casino and free WiFi in pool and beach. The air-conditioned rooms of Courtyard Isla Verde Beach have floor-to-ceiling windows, making the rooms light and airy. All rooms feature, a mini-fridge, a flat-screen TV, and a DVD player. The Bananas Ice Cream Parlor serves sweet treats in a casual ambiance, and the Sirene Restaurant serves fresh seafood. Guests can enjoy live music and Caribbean exotic cocktails at the Picante Lounge. Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort also offers a fitness room, weekly salsa dancing, an on-site cash machine, and laundry and dry cleaning facilities. This resort feautures wedding and meeting facilities. The San Juan Airport is just 1.6 km from Courtyard Isla Verde Beach Resort, and the Plaza Las Americas Shopping Center is 10.5 km away.

Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort | Carolina

Courtyard Isla Verde Beach Resort - Beach

 

 

 

  • Modern 3 Bedroom Condo In Gated West Hills

Providing mountain views, Modern 3 Bedroom Condo In Gated West Hills in Port-of-Spain provides accommodation, an outdoor swimming pool, a bar, a garden, a tennis court and a terrace. The air-conditioned units are furnished with parquet floors and feature a private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, free WiFi, wardrobe, a living room, an equipped kitchen, patio and views over the pool. There is a seating and a dining area in all units. A children's playground is available for guests at the apartment to use. Saint Augustine is 22 km from Modern 3 Bedroom Condo In Gated West Hills, while Las Cuevas is 31 km away.

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  • Hyatt Regency Trinidad

Hyatt Regency Trinidad is located 5 minutes’ walk from Trinidad and Tobago Water Taxi and Ferry Terminal, plus it offers an outdoor infinity pool, a state-of-the-art gym and a business centre. The air-conditioned rooms feature iPod docks, flat-screen cable TV and a private bathroom. Some units have a balcony or sea views. The Hyatt Regency offers other guest facilities include one full-service waterfront restaurant, a lobby bar and lounge and a 9,000 square-foot spa and fitness centre. Hyatt Regency Trinidad provides a relaxing escape for business travellers with an infinity pool plus a poolside grill and terrace overlooking the Gulf of Paria. Hyatt Regency Trinidad was designed as a meeting, convention, business, event and leisure travel property in the Caribbean, and is situated in the Port of Spain International Waterfront Development. The hotel also offers laundry services, conference rooms, and valet parking. Maraca Bay Beach can be reached in a 45-minute drive, while Piarco International Airport is 30 minutes’ drive away.

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PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Pristine beaches and lush forests balanced with historical landmarks and art venues make up an intriguing mix of treasures waiting to be found. Consisting of two main and several smaller sun-kissed islands, Trinidad & Tobago is located at the southernmost end of the Caribbean. Although most people have heard of the exciting carnival — the greatest show worldwide — a rich culture and amazing natural wonders give you many more reasons to put it first in your destination list.

 

 

  • Fort King George (Trinidad)

Not to be confused with Tobago's Fort King Grorge in Scarborough, this historic Trinidadian structure provides visitors with a taste of the island's colonial heritage. Fort George was built in 1804 by former British Governor Brigadier-General Sir Thomas Hislop to protect the Port of Spain from any perceived military threats. However, the formidable structure never saw conflict and the military eventually retired it in 1846. One of Fort George's best known features is its intricate wooden signal station, which provides a stark contrast to the fort's original cannons and dungeons still on display here. Constructed in 1883, this less intimidating, almost quaint structure was designed by Prince Kofi Nti, an Ashanti royal from West Africa who immigrated to Trinidad in 1881.

Fort King George and the Tobago Museum - World List

 

 

 

  • Store Bay (Tobago)

A cheaper alternative to neighboring Pigeon Point, Store Bay's free beach offers travelers a relaxing place to soak up some sun and cool off in Tobago's famous clear, blue waters. But visitors don't just come for the beach. Beachgoers can watch planes come in and land at nearby Arthur Napolean Raymond Robinson International Airport. Store Bay's other big draw is its array of street food vendors, which serve up affordable, local delicacies like crab and dumpling, bake and shark, and pelau (a mixture of rice, vegetables and meat or crab that’s been browned in sugar). Additionally, this beach is one of two departure points for trips to the area's popular snorkeling spot Buccoo Reef. The beach at Store Bay is free to enter, but visitors looking to use one of the beachside loungers or changing facilities should expect to pay a small fee. Some recent beachgoers also warn that Store Bay may not be ideal for those who are elderly or in need of handicap accessible ramps since beach access sits at the bottom of several flights of stairs. The beach is open 24 hours daily, but for those looking for an on-duty lifeguard, plan your visit between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Store Bay - Tobago | Tobago, Trinidad, Beach

 

 

 

  • Asa Wright Nature Centre (Trinidad)

The Asa Wright Nature Centre is home to more than 400 species of native birds, plus 55 different reptile species, 25 amphibians, more than 600 butterflies and more than 2,000 types of flowering plants. In short, northern Trinidad's Asa Wright Nature Centre is bursting at the seams; it's the ultimate stop for both novice and experienced bird-watchers and nature lovers. You could easily spend a day at the expansive park (in fact, the center offers overnight accommodations) but most only took two hours to explore the grounds. Be sure to wear insect repellent and long-sleeved clothes since there are plenty of mosquitos on the property.

MAIN ENTRANCE - Picture of Asa Wright Nature Centre and Lodge, Arima -  Tripadvisor

Asa Wright Nature Centre wildlife location in Trinidad & Tobago, Latin  America | Wildlife Worldwide

 

 

 

  • Yerette (Trinidad)

Nestled within Trinidad's Maracas Valley, this lush sanctuary is home to a variety of native flora and 13 of Trinidad and Tobago's 17 species of hummingbirds. Started accidentally by Dr. Theodore Ferguson and his wife, Gloria, to make it easier to photograph birds (one of the doctor's hobbies), Yerette, which borrows its name from the Amerindian word for "hummingbird," is one of Trinidad's most popular bird-watching spots. Visitors of Yerette rave about the property's vibrant grounds and unparalleled access to the country's hummingbird population. According to previous travelers, so many hummingbirds visit Yerette that it's easy to hear the buzz of their wings. The property is also a favorite among photographers, who claim that the close proximity provides plenty of opportunities for capturing high quality photos.

Copper-Rumped Hummingbird, Yerette, Trinidad. | Photo.net

 

 

 

  • Caroni Bird Sanctuary (Trinidad)

Located about 9 miles southeast of Port of Spain, Caroni Bird Sanctuary offers many of the same thrills of the Asa Wright Nature Centre without requiring the far pilgrimage to the island's northern rainforest. But the real reason to visit Caroni is to observe the scarlet ibis, the national bird of Trinidad and Tobago that resembles a brilliant blood orange flamingo. The best time to see the ibis is in the late afternoon; arrive a little early and you can enjoy a glass-bottom boat tour of the swampland while you're waiting for the ibis to appear. Like any swamp, this one has plenty of mosquitoes a-biting and reptiles a-crawling. If you're at odds with nature, you might want to skip this bird sanctuary altogether. Even if you like the great outdoors, be sure to slather on the insect repellant and wear long sleeves and pants.

Birds of the Caroni Swamp. A, B and C. Red colored Trinidad and... |  Download Scientific Diagram

 

 

 

  • Buccoo Reef (Tobago)

Situated just off the coast of Tobago's Pigeon Point Beach and within 2 miles of Store Bay, Buccoo Reef is highly regarded by locals and visitors as one of Trinidad and Tobago's best areas for snorkeling. Even though parts of this massive reef are starting to die off due to poor conservation efforts, recent travelers said they saw a wide variety of fish and coral while snorkeling. However, more experienced snorkelers may want to skip Buccoo and try out the island's better protected Speyside reefs instead. To visit Buccoo, visitors will need to sign up for one of several glass-bottom boat tours departing from Pigeon Point and Store Bay. The tours typically last two hours and include snorkeling equipment and a stopover at Nylon Pool, a natural, in-sea coral pool that's located just around the corner from Buccoo Reef. Prior visitors note, though, that the cheaper half-day tours, which start at $20 USD, do not include food or restroom facilities. To avoid an additional beach admission fee, choose a tour that departs from Store Bay. Tours are offered daily throughout the day and can be booked through a hotel concierge, at Pigeon Point or Store Bay, or by contacting one of several glass-bottom boat tour companies. Hew's Tours and Pops tours both receive favorable reviews from recent travelers.

BUCCOO REEF (TOBAGO) – 12Musts

 

 

 

  • Maracas Beach

One of the most well known beaches in the island of Trinidad, Maracas is protected by a deep crescent-curved bay. Located on the north side, it lies at the end of a scenic mountain drive from Port of Spain drawing dozens or even hundreds of visitors every day. If you’re looking for more peace and quiet, the nearby beaches make great alternatives. Once you reach this palm-fringed strip of golden sand, enjoy the sun on the shore, take a refreshing swim in the sea, paddle in the blue-green waves or choose a more adventurous activity. Whatever you do, don’t forget to visit one of the several stands and try out bake and shark, the local delicacy.

Maracas Beach: Sun, Sea, Sand and SAFETY?? | Strat Matters

 

 

  • Argyle Waterfalls

A breathtaking drive from Tobago’s capital you will find the Main Ridge reserve through which a short hike will lead you to Argyle River and its multi-tiered waterfall. Take a tour to learn about the rich flora and fauna of the surrounding area and take some time to feel the serene, healing power of the water

Argyle Falls , Tobago photo - Dimitri Sokolenko photos at pbase.com

 

 

 

  • La Brea Pitch Lake

Surrounded by a veil of mystery with numerous local legends, this is the largest natural asphalt lake in the whole world, the others being the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and Lake Guanoco in Venezuela. Beside the village of La Brea, the Pitch Lake has long been attracting scientists and visitors alike for various reasons. Walk on the semisolid surface, visit the small museum that hosts Amerindian artifacts, fossilized remains and other items uncovered from the lake, take a guided tour to learn about the geological history of the place and swim in the natural springs with high levels of sulfur for its healing properties.

Nature's Time Capsules: A Guide to the World's Pitch Lakes - Atlas Obscura

 

 

 

  • Temple in the Sea

Εven though Trinidad is filled with hundreds of religious sites, only one is a floating marvel. The Waterloo coastal temple was build out of necessity by Sewdass Sadhu after the original was razed to the ground by the government. A tiny symbol of huge persistence and pure love is an octagonal-shaped colorful structure surrounded by lanky flags and linked to the mainland through a walkway. To this day, Hindu devotees use it for worship and religious ceremonies. Remove your footwear and enter it with respect to get a better look at the painted marble and stone deities.

Temple In The Sea, Waterloo, Trinidad - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Nylon Pool

Situated off Pigeon Point beach, the Nylon Pool is a natural, crystal clear swimming pool with a sandy bottom in the middle of the ocean. Also known as the Pigeon Point Heritage Park, it is considered the best beach on Tobago, able to rejuvenate anyone lucky enough to swim in it.

Xplore 868...Vacay in Trinidad & Tobago!!!!: Swim in Nylon Pool...Tobago's  Fountain of Youth

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN TRINIDAD & TABAGO

A visit to Trinidad and Tobago is not complete without including the bustling capital city on your list. Port of Spain has the most varied and fascinating culinary traditions, especially when it comes to seafood and fish dishes. From traditional Trinidadian flatbreads filled with shark meat dished up at food huts on the beach to West African-influenced fish curry served at upscale restaurants, here are the best spots to eat seafood in the city.

 

 

  • Waterfront

Traditional Trinidadian food is a mix of Creole, Chinese, Indian-South Asian, West African, Arab, European, Latin American and Amerindian cuisines. Waterfront, located at The Luxury Hyatt Regency Hotel, reflects this fusion of culinary traditions. Sample authentic Caribbean dishes like Trini corn soup or try the locally sourced, Asian-inspired seafood curry. With sweeping views over the Gulf, take a seat at the chef’s table to witness innovation and creativity in the open kitchen.

Tobago Restaurants: the guide to eating out on Tobago

 

 

  • Aioli

This Mediterranean-inspired restaurant’s seating options include a wine bar and a covered terrace. Aioli’s food has been described as “innovative and unique” and has dishes like the Italian and Thai-inspired pad thai fettuccine served with grilled prawns and the fried lobster bites served with truffle aioli. The restaurant also has an extensive menu of exquisite wines.

Aioli | Goop

 

 

 

  • Chaud

For fine dining, Chaud is renowned in the city for its modern Caribbean-inspired dishes. Chef Khalid’s aim is to create a menu that focuses on “freshness, quality and creativity.” From the guava barbecue grouper to the seared Atlantic salmon, there are plenty of refined seafood and fish choices on the menu. This elegant restaurant is the perfect spot to unwind in an intimate setting and indulge in various courses.

Chaud restaurant Trinidad

 

 

 

  • Zanzibar Restaurant

Located on Invader’s Bay, at first glance, you may think Zanzibar is a nightclub. However, once inside, you will realize that this is an unpretentious spot for a casual dinner next to the sea. Seafood dishes include seared ahi tuna steak and a grilled seafood tower. This relaxed spot is ideal for those who want to stroll by the rows of yachts and sit on the deck overlooking the sea with a cocktail in hand.

Varied Menu - Review of Zanzibar Restaurant, Port of Spain, Trinidad and  Tobago - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Richard’s Bake and Shark

In Trinidadian cuisine, a ‘bake and shark’ is a classic street-food dish made using fried flatbread and shark meat, which is then topped with lettuce and sauces. Vendors and food stands across the country serve this traditional dish; however, the best place to try it is at Richard’s Bake and Shark, right next to Maracas Beach. On the northern coast of the country, approximately a 40-minute journey away from the city center, this beach has been widely associated with this traditional dish, as the sharks are more often than not caught on this stretch of water. Order this staple Caribbean dish with fries and a drink, and enjoy it while overlooking the beach.

15 Dishes To Help You Discover The Cuisine of Trinidad and Tobago

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Trinidad and Tobago offer a wide variety of souvenirs and products to suit every budget, from woven palm hats to expensive jewellery in Port of Spain’s malls. Local artists create fine woodcarvings, shell and bead jewellery, paintings and beaten copper pieces, as well as lovely leather sandals. T&T also produces great music and has exceptionally talented writers – purchasing a few books and CDs will enable you to carry a little local culture back home.

 

  • Art & Crafts

Port of Spain and San Fernando have Trinidad’s widest variety of shops, but there’s a lot less on offer in Tobago, where you should head for Lowlands Mall or central Scarborough. Opening hours are generally Monday to Friday 8am to 5.30pm and Saturday 8am to 5pm; malls are usually open from 10am until 8 or 9pm, while supermarkets open 8am–8pm daily. Opening times are often variable, depending on the individual shop and mood of the shopkeeper.

Prices are generally higher in Tobago than in Trinidad. Paintings and woodcarvings may seem expensive in comparison with other local produce, but these works of art are unique and prices are far lower than in art galleries back home. For bargains, check out streetside vendors and small backstreet shops – souvenir shops, boutiques and malls have higher prices. Bargaining is conducted to a certain extent with street and beach vendors, but not in shops.

T&T’s rich musical culture has spawned an astonishing variety of styles – steel pan, calypso, soca, rapso, chutney, dub and parang – and produced many marvellous songs with strong lyrics and powerful rhythms. The best places to buy music are in Trinidad: in Port of Spain try Crosby’s, at 54 Western Main Rd in St James, or Rhyner’s, 54 Prince St, while roadside vendors sell inexpensive pirate copies of popular reggae and soca tracks. In Tobago, try the stalls lining Wilson and Milford roads in Scarborough.

Local book stores are usually full of US titles and schoolbooks, though there are some decent stores in Port of Spain. Many Trinbagonian authors are published in Britain and the US, however, so if you want to get a taste of T&T’s culture it may be best to buy their work before you come.

T&T has some of the best-quality cocoa in the world, and chocolate made locally from Trinitario fine flavour beans is a burgeoning industry in T&T. In Trinidad, you can buy exquisite chocolates by Cocobel from the workshop and a couple of gourmet shops, while Soular’s delicious bars, nibs and cocoa powder (as well as their delectable muffin mix and dried bananas) are available at Tobago’s Shore Things and at the M Store at Piarco Airport. The Tobago Cocoa Estate’s award-winning bars are available only at the estate, though their cocoa balls are more widely available, as are other brands. These are solid spheres or sticks of cocoa and spices, which you grate and boil up with milk and sugar to make traditional chocolate tea. Local coffee, which comes in a variety of flavours such as coconut and rum, can be bought in supermarkets and souvenir shops.

It’s said that the reason the island’s White Oak rum is not well known worldwide is because the locals keep it to themselves and consume the total production. Trinidad’s famous Angostura Brewery (see Witco Desperadoes) produces a wide range of excellent rum as well as their ever-popular bitters, all readily available in shops throughout the islands. Both airports in Trinidad and Tobago have a selection of duty-free goods, though prices at Piarco in Trinidad are lower.

Arts and crafts

Locally made arts, crafts and unusual souvenirs, like carved calabashes, woven palm grasshoppers, shell jewellery and carved driftwood, are usually sold on or near the more popular beaches and in souvenir shops. Ornate carvings are also sold in art galleries and at individual stalls that occasionally appear on country roads. The road- and beach-side stalls are run by local craftspeople and artists who sell good-quality handmade goods at reasonable prices. You’ll often see Rastafarians selling handmade leather sandals from stalls or on the street – try Port of Spain’s Independence Square.

In Tobago, the widest variety is sold at the huts adjacent to Store Bay Beach, but you’ll get better deals in Scarborough, at the vendors’ mall and the stalls that line Milford and Wilson roads around the market square.

In order to protect local endangered animals, avoid buying products made from turtle shell, black coral, conch or bird feathers.

 

KESKIVIIKKO, 21. LOKAKUUTA 2020
AZERBAIJAN EUROPE

11 Amazing Reasons to Visit Azerbaijan

Billing itself as the 'Land of Fire', Azerbaijan (Azərbaycan) is a tangle of contradictions and contrasts. Neither Europe nor Asia, it's a nexus of ancient historical empires, but also a ‘new’ nation which has undergone an extraordinary transformation from the war-ravaged post-Soviet 1990s to an oil-enriched host of Formula 1 and Europa League football.

The cosmopolitan capital, Baku, rings a Unesco-listed ancient core with dazzling 21st-century architecture and sits on a balmy bay of the Caspian Sea. In the surrounding semi-desert are mud volcanoes and curious fire phenomena. Yet barely three hours’ drive away, timeless rural villages lie amid lush orchards backed by the soaring Great Caucasus Mountains.

Come quickly. Having long been overlooked by visitors, Azerbaijan's new easy visas, bargain-value hotels and close-packed range of beautiful landscapes are starting to attract significant flows of tourists, though as yet few of them from Western countries.

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT AZERBAIJAN

The best time to visit Azerbaijan is April to June and September to October, which will let you avoid the 40°C summers and sub zero winters - particularly in the mountains. You can also participate in the Novruz Bayrami celebrations each March, which mark the Persian New Year. You won't want to miss out on the craft shopping in Azerbaijan - save space in your suitcase for silk, silver and maybe a carpet.

Although many of us associate it with Russia, Azerbaijan does not get as cold as one might imagine. The Caucasus Mountains do get snow in winter, with temps as low as -20°C, but they also protect the rest of the country from full on Arctic conditions. Similarly, the Caspian Sea keeps summer manageable, but it can hit 40°C. So for hiking and culture, the best time to visit Azerbaijan is April-June and Sep-Oct. The mountains turn into a wildflower frenzy when snows melt and, at the same time spring brings the biggest holiday: Novruz Bayrami, around third week March. It also celebrates Persian New Year.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO AZERBAIJAN

The international airport of Baku has many connections to Europe and many other countries in Asia and the Middle East.

By plane - The primary international gateway is Heydar Aliyev International Airport in Baku, with additional international airports (whose international routes are basically some Russian cities, Istanbul and Tehran) found in Nakhchivan City, Ganja & Lankaran.

By train - Trains connect Azerbaijan with Georgia and Russia. There is an overnight train connecting Tbilisi, Georgia and Baku.

By bus - There are buses that run daily from Georgia, Turkey, Iran and Russia to Azerbaijan.

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND AZERBAIJAN

Public Transportation – Public transportation prices will vary by city, but expect to pay around 0.20 AZN (€0.10 EUR) for a standard adult ticket for the bus. If you need to take a taxi, prices start around 1.89 AZN (€0.94 EUR) and cost around 0.60 AZN (0.30 EUR) for every kilometer. Baku has a subway system that costs 0.30 AZN (0.15 EUR) per ride, and you’ll need a prepaid smart card to access the metro.

Bus – Buses and minibuses (marshrutkas) are the most common options for intercity travel. All prices are fixed and very affordable — expect to pay about 1 AZN (0.50 EUR) for a 50-mile (80-kilometer) trip. You’ll likely pay the bus driver directly.

Trains – Trains in Azerbaijan are a lot slower and less frequent than buses; however, if you’re not in a rush, night trains can be an excellent option to save on a night’s accommodation.

Car Rental – If you’re driving, make sure to buy an International Driving Permit (IDP) as you’ll need one for any car rental! It costs about 34 AZN (16.92 EUR) and is valid for one year after the date of issue (plus it’s valid in 150 countries). Car rentals can sometimes be as low as 60 AZN (€29.85 EUR) per day.

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN AZERBAIJAN

 

  • Shahdag Hotel & Spa​

Shahdag & Spa Hotel is located in the picturesque and calm place in the mountains, 230 km north of Baku. It features a spa area with an indoor swimming pool, a gym, a sauna and a Turkish steam bath. Free Wi-Fi and free parking are provided. All classic-style rooms come with air conditioning, flat-screen TV, a safety deposit box and a minibar. Free toiletries and a hairdryer are available in the bathroom. The on-site restaurant offers various Azerbaijan and European dishes. A buffet breakfast is served every morning, and guests can have a drink at the elegant bar. Guests can go cycling, horse riding and hiking. The hotel offers its own skiing school and provides convenient access to the slopes. Also it is possible to order massage services, and there is a children’s playground on site. The nearest airport is Heydar Aliyev International Airport, 230 km away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Qafqaz Riverside Hotel

Featuring a spa centre, an outdoor and indoor swimming pools and free Wi-Fi, this resort is located on the Damiraparan riverbank in Gabala town. It offers air-conditioned rooms and cottages with mountain view. Every elegant room and cottage at Qafqaz Riverside Hotel includes a flat-screen TV and minibar. Bathrooms are fitted with free toiletries, slippers and bathrobes. Local and European cuisine is served at À la carte Brasserie Restaurant, while cocktails are offered at Fireplace Bar and Shisha Bar. Activities at Qafqaz Resort include snooker, tabletop and board games, table tennis and children’s playground. Guests can also relax in the steam bath or on the sun terrace by the pool. Gabala town centre is 4 km and Gabala Airport is 25 km away from Qafqaz Riverside Resort Hotel.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • River-Inn Resort & SPA

Featuring a bar, River-Inn Resort & SPA is set in Nabran and also provides a garden and a terrace. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and room service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The property features a hammam, evening entertainment and a kids' club. All units are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the resort every room comes with a wardrobe and a private bathroom. An Italian breakfast is available daily at River-Inn Resort & SPA. The accommodation offers a sauna. The area is popular for cycling, and bike hire is available at River-Inn Resort & SPA.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Sakit Gol - Silent Lake Hotel

Offering indoor and outdoor pools and a restaurant, Sakit Gol - Silent Lake Hotel is located in Şamaxı. Free WiFi access is available in this resort. The rooms will provide you with a TV and air conditioning. There is also an electric kettle. Featuring a bathtub or a shower, private bathroom also comes with a hairdryer and a bidet. You can enjoy lake view from the room. At Sakit Gol - Silent Lake Hotel you will find a a tennis court and a fitness centre. An array of activities can be enjoyed on site or in the surroundings, including water sport, cycling, fishing and hiking. The property offers free public parking on site.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Riva Hill Resort Lankaran

Riva Hill Resort Lankaran in Lankaran features a fitness centre and a bar. The property has a garden, as well as a terrace. The air-conditioned rooms provide pool view and come with a wardrobe and free WiFi. Guest rooms at the resort come with a seating area. All units feature a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. Guests at Riva Hill Resort Lankaran can enjoy a continental breakfast. Speaking English and Russian at the 24-hour front desk, staff are ready to help around the clock.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Macara Village Resort

Macara Village Resort features a restaurant, bar, a shared lounge and garden in Quba. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and room service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The resort has family rooms. The units in the resort are equipped with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. At Macara Village Resort all rooms come with air conditioning and a private bathroom. The accommodation offers a buffet or American breakfast. Macara Village Resort offers a children's playground. You can play table tennis at the resort, and the area is popular for horse riding and fishing.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Golden Coast

Overlooking the Caspian Sea, this modern 5-star hotel in Baku features an indoor pool, fitness centre and a large spa. Rooms at Golden Coast offer free Wi-Fi and elegant interiors. Regional specialities and international cuisine are served in the Golden Coast’s restaurant, where weekly live music performances also take place. A wide selection of drinks can be enjoyed at the bar, or outside on the terrace. Air-conditioned rooms are spacious and decorated in a classic style. Comforts include satellite TV, a seating area and a private bathroom with slippers. Guests can relax in the spa, which comes complete with a sauna, steam room and massage facilities. Golden Coast is 3.5 km from the Old Town district, while National Flag Square is just 550 m away. Baku International Airport is 30 km from the hotel.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Spring Hotel

Located in Novxanı, Spring Hotel features a bar, shared lounge, water sports facilities, and free WiFi throughout the property. Featuring a 24-hour front desk, this property also welcomes guests with a restaurant, a water park and a seasonal outdoor pool. The resort provides an indoor pool, fitness centre, evening entertainment and room service. All units are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a wardrobe. Guests at the resort can enjoy a continental breakfast. Guests can enjoy the spa and wellness centre, have a game of table tennis, organise trips at the tour desk, or rent a car to explore the surroundings. Spring Hotel also provides a business centre and free private parking. Baku is 27 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • 9 QARDAŞ

9 QARDAŞ is situated in Lerik and features a garden. Boasting a 24-hour front desk, this property also has a restaurant and a terrace. There is free private parking and the property features free airport shuttle service. The rooms at the resort are fitted with a seating area. At 9 QARDAŞ rooms include a wardrobe, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy an Asian breakfast.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Quba Palace Hotel

Located in the picturesque area, Quba Palace Hotel features a spa and wellness centre, indoor and outdoor pools, sauna, hammam and fitness centre. Free parking is available on site. The rooms offer air conditioning, a seating area, fridge and flat-screen TV with satellite channels. The bathrooms provide a hairdryer and bathrobes. Guests can dine in 1 of the 3 on-site restaurants, serving national, international and European cuisine, or use property’s barbecue facilities. There is also a bar in the hotel. Room service and breakfasts in the room are provided upon request. An array of activities can be enjoyed on site or in the surroundings, including tennis, table tennis, golf and mini football. A Bus Station is 9 km from the hotel, and shuttle service is provided at surcharge. Baku Train Station is 164 km away, and Heydar Aliyev International Airport is 191 km from Quba Palace Hotel .

Quba Palace Hotel, Quba – Updated 2020 Prices

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN AZERBAIJAN

From getting lost in the UNESCO-listed Old City to visiting mud volcanoes and enjoying a sunset from the Maiden Tower, Azerbaijan has no shortage of activities to help visitors create a diverse and fascinating itinerary.

 

 

  • Check out the mud volcanoes

Azerbaijan is home to nearly a third of the world’s mud volcanoes, which form when pockets of underground gas force their way to the surface. They’re like geysers, but with mud, and since they’re not made from magma, the mud is usually icy (just above freezing temperature). The ones at Gobustan National Park are the most popular to visit from Baku on a day tour (it’s possible to take a bus to the park’s entrance but finding the volcanoes isn’t easy). Tours start from about 60 AZN (29.86 EUR).

From Baku: Gobustan, Mud Volcanoes & Mosque Private Tour - Baku, Azerbaijan  | GetYourGuide

 

 

 

  • Discover the Sheki Khan’s Palace

The Sheki Khan’s Palace was built in 1797 and was once the summer residence for the Khans. Located in Sheki, it is one of the most ornate and iconic buildings in South Caucasus. Its shebeke windows (incredibly delicate stained glass with geometric patterns, made specifically by Azerbaijan masters) casts brilliant rays of colored light across the entire interior. The palace opens daily from 10am-6pm and costs 2 AZN (€1 EUR).

Sheki and Khan's Palace in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list

 

 

 

  • Palace of the Shirvanshahs

Within Baku’s walled Inner City is the sandstone Palace of the Shirvanshahs. The palace was built in the 15th century and included a mosque, bathhouse, and mausoleum, as well the famous Maiden Tower with its panoramic views of the city. (Fun fact: They still have no idea what this tower was built for.) The Palace is open daily from 10am until 6pm and admission is 2 AZN ( EUR) or 6 AZN (3 EUR) for a guided tour.

Palace of the Shirvanshahs Admission Ticket | Baku, Azerbaijan Activities -  Lonely Planet

 

 

 

  • Relax on the beaches of the Absheron

During the summer months, the residents of Baku migrate to their country houses (known as dachas) on the Absheron Peninsula to escape the city heat. In recent years, thanks to the resorts popping up along the coast, tourists are following suit. To get there, you can take a taxi or a public bus. The public beaches at Mardakan or Buzovna are two popular choices for sunbathing and swimming in the warm waters of the Caspian Sea.

Book Hayat Beach Resort in Baku | Hotels.com

 

 

 

  • Go hiking in the Guba region

Head north by bus to the mountain town of Quba for a cooler climate, old mosques, and traditional carpets in beautiful alpine surroundings. There’s a lot of hiking here, and many people also visit Tenghi Canyon. You can also stop in Khinalig, a major Zoroastrian center, or Krasnaya Sloboda, the only all-Jewish town outside of Israel, populated by the Juhuro, or Mountain Jews. Although you can travel here and hike independently, you will also find many companies offering organized day tours to the region starting from around 38 AZN (18.91 EUD).

Hiking In Azerbaijan: 6 Places That Will Leave You Bewitched In 2020!

 

 

 

  • Hit the slopes

Azerbaijan may not be known internationally for its skiing, but it does have two developing winter resorts that offer an “off-the-beaten-path” winter experiences: Shahdag Mountain Resort, and Tufandag Mountain Resort. The ski season is very short, lasting just two months, from mid-December to late February. To buy a ski pass for the day will cost about 20 AZN (€9.95 EUD), and expect to pay 34 AZN (16.92 EUR) for a lesson.

Azerbaijani ski resorts among popular in CIS

 

 

 

  • Go to Quba

Head north by bus to the mountain town of Quba for a cooler climate, old mosques, and traditional carpets in beautiful alpine surroundings. There’s a lot of hiking here, too, and many people also visit Tenghi Canyon. You can also stop in Khinalig, a major Zoroastrian center, or Krasnaya Sloboda, the only all-Jewish town outside of Israel, populated by the Juhuro, or Mountain Jews.

A Two-Week Travel Itinerary to Azerbaijan

 

 

 

  • Go to Qabala

Once strategically located along the middle of the Silk Road, this dusty, old, not-so-small town now houses several ancient monuments, including a thousand-year-old defense tower, a 13th-century mosque, and a mausoleum. Take an early bus from Sheki and spend the night here. All the attractions are close together, so you can easily see the town in a day.

Qabala - Wikipedia Baku, Qabala - 9 hours Private Tour Package | Nature, History and  Sightseeing | tourHQ

 

 

 

  • Hang out in Ganja

Azerbaijan’s second biggest city dates back to the sixth century. There’s an attractive square near another caravanserai (similar to the one in Sheki), some traditional churches, a very odd house made from bottles, and the Tomb of Nizami Ganjavi, the country’s most famous 12th-century poet (he’s kind of a national hero). It’s a good stopover on the way south.

Ganja State Philharmonic Hall

 

 

 

  • Visit Lankaran

Before heading back to Baku, go south visit this sleepy resort town on the Caspian Sea. See the Old Prison and Lighthouse (Stalin was a prisoner here for a while), visit the ancient bazaar, the 18th-century fortress, and the 19th-century mosque. You can spend a good day sightseeing here and then another on the beaches further south in Kenaramesha. If you have more time, take a day trip to the Ghizil-Agaj State Reserve, which is home to about 250 bird species. You can take organized tours from town.

Azerbaijan travel best destinations! | Silk Road Explore

 

 

 

  • SKIP Yanar Dag (aka the “burning mountain”)

Yanar Dag is a natural gas fire that blazes continuously on a hillside just outside Baku. Marco Polo once described the land in this area as being on fire because of phenomena like this, but this is the only fire left. It’s really small, so I wouldn’t make the journey specifically to see this, but it’s included in most tours anyway.

Book Review: Caspian: The Elements — Musée Magazine

 

 

 

 

 

FOOD TO EAT IN AZERBAIJAN

The food in Azerbaijan blends regional influences from Iran, Turkey and the Mediterranean. Dishes tend to be meat-based, especially mutton, with recipes passed down generations to give distinct flavours. If you’re visiting Azerbaijan, sample some of these traditional meals.

 

 

  • Plov

Plov, or Pilaf, is a traditional food in Azerbaijan as well as other places in Asia and Eastern Europe. Azerbaijani pilaf uses saffron-flavoured rice cooked with aromatic herbs, fried meat and vegetables. Different restaurants have their own styles, meaning you won’t get the same taste twice. Most restaurants serve Plov. Consider sampling it in Baku.

Azerbaijan.Plov. So delicious | Cuisine, Food, Mouth watering

 

 

  • Kebab

Kebab is a favourite of Azerbaijan cuisine, having similarities to Eastern Europe and the Middle East. Various kinds of seasoned meat and vegetables are skewered and barbequed. If you go for a meal with a local, more likely than not, you’ll have a kebab. Lyulya Kebab is a particular type of kebab that consists of mouth-watering barbequed minced lamb on skewers.

A mouthwatering Azerbaijani kebab | © Evru/Shutterstock

 

 

 

  • Halva

If you have travelled around Eastern Europe and the Middle East, you’ve probably tasted halva. Azerbaijan's version is different and is produced only in the mountainous region of Sheki. Few people know the secret recipe for this sugary confectionery, making it somewhat unique to the area.

Blocks of sweet Halva | © Shuhrenataxmedov/WikiCommons

 

 

 

  • Kufta Bozbash

Large meatballs boiled into a delicious broth with potatoes, peas and mutton bones make Kufta Bozbash one of the national soups of Azerbaijan. Depending on the region, chefs add different types of ingredients and spices to the broth, and sometimes include a dried plum.

One of Azerbaijan's popular and healthy dishes | © Nort/Shutterstock

 

 

 

  • Roast Chicken

Walk around the streets of Baku and you’ll probably pass a few shops barbequing and roasting chicken. Roast chicken costs a few dollars and is wrapped in thin sheets of bread with a handful of raw onions. Locals take away and eat at home.

Azerbaijani chicken | The Saturday Paper

 

 

 

  • Piti

Sheki's Signature dish, piti, provides a hearty meal for local workers. The lamb stew cooked with vegetables comes in a traditional clay pot, and fills stomachs for hours.

Piti - Delicious Azerbaijani Lamb Stew | Piti Hazırlanması | Azerbaijan  Cuisine - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Dolma

Minced lamb meat and rice infused with herbs and spices wrapped in either cabbage or vine leaves make Azeri Dolma. This type of Azeri food has more than 25 varieties depending on the region and the season. Dolma uses vine leaves in the winter and spring, eggplants and peppers during the summer and cabbage leaves in autumn.

Aubergine and Pepper Dolma found on menus during the summer | © Irada/WikiCommons

 

 

 

  • Dushbara

Azerbaijan’s version of dumplings, dushbara, are small balls of stuffed dough served in a lamb broth. Typical fillings include minced meat, tomatoes and onions served with dried mint, wine vinegar and garlic.

A healthy bowl of Azerbaijani dumplings | © Fanfo/Shutterstock

 

 

 

  • Baliq

The Caspian Sea provides an almost endless supply of fresh fish. Grilled fish, or baliq, on a skewer is a favourite food in Azerbaijan and is eaten with a sour plum sauce.

Sinov Restaurant | A warm and relaxing experience of a tasteful cuisine of  Azerbaijan in the city centre of Baku. | Baku - Wolt

 

 

 

  • Dovga

Dovga, a traditional Azeri dish, is a type of yoghurt soup with rice, chickpeas and herbs. Locals eat it either warm or cold.

Traditional Azerbaijan yoghurt with herbs soup | © shankar s./Flickr

 

 

 

  • Buckwheat

Buckwheat makes a great alternative to grains and rice. The heavy, carbohydrate-rich food can be eaten for breakfast or served in a large bowl in the centre of the table.

Buckwheat is a popular staple in the Caucasus | © Fructibus/WikiCommons

 

 

 

  • Khamrashi

This is another type of traditional soup using minced meat, boiled beans and noodles.

Khamrashi (Azerbaijan)

 

 

 

  • Qutab

Qutab is a type of pancake filled with either meat, cheese or spinach. Forget sugary syrup–Azeri pancakes are savoury and eaten with a yoghurt sauce.

Azeri stuffed flatbread that resembles a savoury pancake  | © Chubykin Arkady/Shutterstock

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN AZERBAIJAN

  • Abad

In a newly restored 19th-century building, this centre is predominantly a community project to support local potters in their craft. You can watch artisans at work and peruse a selection of ceramics, glassware and mini-carpets. In the yard there's an 18th-century anbar (stairway to underground water source).

ABAD (Baku) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos) -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Çiraq Books

For two decades, Çiraq has been Baku's leading English-language bookshop. It has a decent range of classics, bestsellers, travel guides and locally relevant titles, plus a good souvenir section.

Travel Bloggers Share the Best Bookstores in the World • Blond Wayfarer

 

 

 

  • Təzə Bazar

The big, bustling bazaar sells everything from pottery, metalwork and carpets to masses of fresh food. Saffron comes in a wide variety of qualities, the cheapest just AZN1 a cupful.

Teze Bazaar Baku - where you can find eastern products

 

 

 

  • Baku Book Center

A marvel in this age of closing bookstores, this impressive palace of reading opened in 2018 and holds regular book signings and exhibitions.

ADA Bookstore (Baku) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with  Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Rolls Royce

Cars to get you noticed. The showroom, shared with Mini, is in one of Baku's most elegant examples of 'oil boom' architecture, originally built in 1901 for Gorodskoi Bank. In the classic novel Ali and Nino (Kurban Said, 1937) the same building was home to the Fillifpojanz Coffee Shop where the plot's hero reflects upon the rebuffing of his marriage proposal.

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Baku • Azerbaijan 360°

 

 

 

  • Crafts House

Although the wide range of knick-knacks is mostly fairly corny tourist tat, this two-storey complex also includes a couple of genuine craft artists' workshops. It is worth perusing en route to the tourist office, which is upstairs in the same historic brick building.

The Best Street Markets in Baku, Azerbaijan

 

 

 

  • Halvaçi Yəhyə

Şəki is famed for its super-sweet, syrup-soaked halva, which is actually more like a form of paxlava (baklava). There are dozens of local brands but Yəhyə is particularly famous, having received a 2015 shopping visit from the president and his wife with President Erdoğan of Turkey in tow.

Alli's Excellent Adventures!: July 2014

 

 

 

  • Park Bulvar Mall

Opened in 2010, Park Bulvar was Baku's first international-style shopping mall. It remains one of the most popular, though some residents complain that it should never have been built on the green bayfront promenade – an area which is technically a national park.Opened in 2010, Park Bulvar was Baku's first international-style shopping mall. It remains one of the most popular, though some residents complain that it should never have been built on the green bayfront promenade – an area which is technically a national park.

Park Bulvar Mall - Baku

 

 

  • Gəncə Mall

Locals remain entranced by what is Azerbaijan's fanciest mall outside Baku, but despite the soaring glass-roofed atrium, the place is full of 'could be anywhere' shops and fast-food chains.

Ganja Mall / Bitmiş Layihələr / Layihələr / North West Construction

 

 

 

  • Karavansara Bazarı

While the majority of the wares on sale here are a little tacky, it's worth taking a quick look inside if only to admire the architecture of one of Baku's most photogenic caravanserais.

The Best Street Markets in Baku, Azerbaijan

 

 

 

  • Tom Ford - Men

The Tom Ford men's couture store occupies a classic Baku mansion that once hosted Charles de Gaulle during a secret 1944 stopover en route to Moscow.

Neiman Marcus NorthPark to open Tom Ford Menswear shop | Retail store  interior, Store design interior, Supermarket design

 

MAANANTAI, 19. LOKAKUUTA 2020
CURACAO

Best diving, restaurants, bars in Curacao

Curacao is an island in the southwestern Caribbean, about 44 miles north of Venezuela, South America and between Aruba and Bonaire. It is part of the Netherlands Antilles and is under the jurisdiction of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The island is about 38 miles long and varies in width from three to five miles, with a year-round population of about 138,000. While 90 percent of the population speaks Papiamento -- a native Creole-style language -- English, Dutch and Spanish are commonly spoken here.

The capital city is Willemstad, on the southwestern part of the island and is divided into two areas on either side of the large canal. One area is called Ostrobanda and the other side is called Punda. Willemstad's two bridges have put Curacao on the map. Queen Juliana, the highest in the Caribbean, and the Queen Emma Pontoon, which swings wide many times daily to allow access to one of the busiest ports in the world.

Very much inspired by Dutch influences, Willemstad retains the colorful flavor of an 18th-century Dutch colonial village. Willemstad has been designated a "World Heritage" site by UNESCO and features many historic buildings and unique architecture. 

With its delightful Dutch colonial architecture, thriving art and culinary scenes and excellent history museums, go-go Curaçao feels like a little piece of Europe at the edge of the Caribbean. A little piece of Europe, that is, with glorious hidden beaches, wondrous caves, amazing snorkeling and diving, and a wild, undeveloped windward coast dotted with prickly cacti and whiptail blue lizards.

Curaçao also has a surging economy beyond tourism, which means that Willemstad has factories, humdrum neighborhoods and sometimes bad traffic. Catering to visitors is not the primary aim here, which lends the island more authenticity than its neighbors tend to offer. So if you’re looking for a Caribbean destination that's busy setting its own pace – a place where the adventuring tends to be a bit more unbridled – Curaçao is right for you.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT CURACAO

The best time to visit Curaçao is from May to November, during the off-peak season. During these months, you'll find the lowest airfares and hotel rates, with rooms often priced up to 50 percent lower than they are in the high season (especially during summer). Plus, you won't be vying for beach chairs with throngs of other vacationers. What's more, Curaçao doesn't suffer the wrath of hurricane season. Curaçao's weather tends to be sunny even throughout the months that other Caribbean islands experience torrential rains. Only 12 degrees north of the equator, Curaçao's average temperature rests in the mid-80s all year. Most vacationers head to Curaçao between December and April, causing hotel rates and airfare to skyrocket. If you've come to dive or snorkel, you'll enjoy good visibility throughout the year. Because the island is located outside the hurricane belt, its marine life is unaffected by seasonal changes.

 

May-November - Hurricanes tend to bypass Curaçao, so you won't get blown away if you visit between May and November (unlike some less fortunate Caribbean isles). Showers tend to occur at night, but that won't hinder you from soaking up some rays during the day. Traveling in the offseason means you'll find steeply discounted hotel rates and airfares.

December-April - Cold temperatures and holiday breaks drive vacationers from northern climates down to the Caribbean, leading to inflated hotel rates and airfare, as well as crowded restaurants and beaches. However, the island's 80-degree temperatures and events calendar may convince you that a winter trip is worth the price. Curaçao celebrates a frenzied version of Carnival from early January until the end of February. Keep in mind: These months see the most rainfall of the entire year, but daily showers are usually brief.

 

 

 

 

THINGS NOT TO MISS IN CURACAO

• Christoffel National Park
 • Queen Emma Bridge, a floating pontoon bridge
 • The Curaçao Seaquarium
 • Kurá Hulanda Museum, the Curaçao Museum, and the Maritime Museum
 • Jan Kok salt flats, dating back to 1650

 

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO CURACAO

By Plane - Curaçao has daily non-stop air services from the U.S., and daily flights to Venezuela and from the Netherlands. Curaçao also offers flights to Germany,Canada,Brazil, Surinam, Colombia, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago and St. Domingo, Bonaire, Aruba, and St. Maarten. Connections can be made to any part of the world.Curaçao also offers general aviation services at the International Airport of Curaçao.

By Sea - Some of the cruise lines that visit Curacao are Sun cruise, Carnival Cruises, Holland America, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruises, Royal Caribbean and Deutsche Sectouristik. Check with travel and cruise websites for rates and cruise routes and itineraries.

 

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND CURACAO

The best way to get around Curaçao is by car. Some of Curaçao's hotels offer area shuttles, and the public buses cover the majority of the island, but service is infrequent, especially outside of Willemstad. If you want to explore the island on your own time, then you'll want your own set of wheels. Taxis are available from Curaçao's major airport, Curaçao International Airport (CUR), about 8 miles northwest of Willemstad. However, cabs can be expensive, especially if you are planning to use them frequently.  Check with your hotel to see if it offers an airport shuttle service. Otherwise, expect to pay around $30 for a one-way taxi ride from the airport to Willemstad. Major airlines, such as American Airlines, JetBlue and Air Canada, service the Curacao airport.

 

Car - Renting a car is a worthwhile investment if you plan to explore outside major urban areas like Willemstad. Car rentals can cost you a pretty penny, but you don't have to keep the car for your entire stay. You can pick up a rental at the airport; several major car rental chains are stationed at the airport, including Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Hertz and Thrifty. There are also a high concentration of car rental agencies on the eastern side of the island near the cruise ship terminal. Rates can vary by season and company, but you should expect to pay between $39 and $69 a day. According to the U.S. State Department, your U.S. driver's license is sufficient for driving in Curacao.

Taxi - Taxis are good for short jaunts around Willemstad, but longer journeys and island tours will put a considerable dent in your wallet. Curaçao's taxis are unmetered, but drivers may have rate sheets available for different destinations. A cab ride to the northwestern side of the island will cost you about $80 to $100. Before 6 a.m. and after 11 p.m., or if you have more than four passengers, cab drivers raise fares by 25 percent. Also, taxi drivers expect a 10-percent tip. It's best to agree on a fare before you enter the cab.

Bus - Public transportation on Curaçao is limited. The large "Konvooi" buses will get you around Willemstad, with stations located in Punda and Otrobanda. However, convoys only run about once an hour on weekdays, and even more rarely on weekends. Convoys will also shuttle you westward, but service along these routes is infrequent (every two hours or so). One-way fares vary, but generally cost 2 guilders (or about $1.15). You can also ride the smaller "buses" (actually nine-person vans labeled "BUS"), which run more frequently than the convoys, but have no set schedule.

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN CURACAO

 

  • Sunscape Curacao Resort Spa & Casino

The Sunscape Curacao Resort Spa & Casino offers an outdoor pool, a sauna and a free town centre shuttle service. This all inclusive features massage services and free parking on site. The rooms present colourful beddings, views of the ocean or the gardens, and cable TV. The private bathrooms offer free toiletries and have showers. All food and beverages are included when staying at Sunscape Curacao, and Guests may choose from six gourmet restaurants including four à la carte, one buffet, and a café. WiFi is available in the lobby. Curacao International Airport is 20 minutes’ drive from the resort, and central Willemstad can be reached in 8 minutes by car. 

Sunscape Curacao Resort | CheapCaribbean

 

 

 

  • Corendon Mangrove Beach Resort

Set in Willemstad, 2.2 km from Parasasa Beach, Corendon Mangrove Beach Resort offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a fitness centre and a bar. With a shared lounge, the 5-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. At the hotel, all rooms have a balcony. All guest rooms in Corendon Mangrove Beach Resort are fitted with a flat-screen TV and a hairdryer. A buffet breakfast is available every morning at the accommodation. Corendon Mangrove Beach Resort offers a children's playground. You can play table tennis at the hotel, and bike hire and car hire are available. Queen Emma Bridge is 2.3 km from Corendon Mangrove Beach Resort, while Curacao Sea Aquarium is 8 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • The Royal Sea Aquarium Resort

Located on a private island next to Curaçao Sea Aquarium, the Royal Sea Aquarium Resort features 2 swimming pools, a hot tub and a private beach. You can enjoy meals in the resort’s beachfront restaurant Each air-conditioned suite at the Royal Sea Aquarium has a balcony with views of the sea. All suites have free Wi-Fi, a safe and a flat-screen TV with cable channels, plus fully equipped kitchen or kitchenette. The Ocean Encounters dive centre and Sea Aquarium Beach are within a short walk of the Royal Sea Aquarium Resort. Willemstad is just 10 minutes’ drive away, while Curaçao International Airport is 30 minutes’ drive away.

Very nice visit in Curacao! - Review of The Royal Sea Aquarium Resort,  Willemstad - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort

Located in Willemstad, 80 m from Parasasa Beach, Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. With a bar, the 5-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation offers room service, a kids' club and ticket service for guests. At the hotel, all rooms are equipped with a balcony. At Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort each room is fitted with a desk and a flat-screen TV. A continental breakfast is available daily at the accommodation. Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort offers a terrace. Guests will find a 24-hour front desk, a shared lounge and a business centre at the property. Queen Emma Bridge is 9 km from the hotel, while Curacao Sea Aquarium is 11 km away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Pietermaai Boutique Hotel

Situated 20 m from the Caribbean Sea, Pietermaai Boutique Hotel offers fully furnished accommodation in the historical Pietermaai district of Willemstad. It offers a charming garden with 2-level pool and terrace. Each bright apartment and studio features natural colors and wood-beamed ceilings. They also include a kitchenette. The apartments and studios are conveniently located next to restaurants and there is an on-site mini-market. The property is next to many propular attractions in Willemstad. Pietermaai Boutique Hotel offers free on-site parking.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Dreams Curacao Resort, Spa & Casino

Set in Willemstad, Dreams Curacao Resort, Spa & Casino offers beachfront accommodation 1.2 km from Parasasa Beach and offers various facilities, such as a restaurant, a fitness centre and a bar. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and room service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The accommodation features evening entertainment and a kids' club. A buffet breakfast is available every morning at the hotel. You can play billiards and tennis at Dreams Curacao Resort, Spa & Casino, and the area is popular for snorkelling. Queen Emma Bridge is 2.4 km from the accommodation, while Curacao Sea Aquarium is 9 km from the property.

Dreams Resorts & Spas

 

 

 

  • Saint Tropez Boutique Hotel

Saint Tropez Boutique Hotel is a property located in the picturesque and colorful Pietermaai disctrict just 20 minutes’ drive from Hato International Airport. The complex is located beachfront and features an outdoor pool and free WiFi throughout. The apartments and rooms at Saint Tropez are air conditioned. Some feature a balcony, and the private bathrooms have showers. They are decorated with a modern style and have minimalist details. Within walking distance you will find nice restaurants, cafe's and shops. Seaquarium Beach is 5 minutes’ drive from Saint Tropez, as well as Willemstad’s town centre. Some popular activities in the area are diving, sports fishing and windsurfing.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Villa Zarza

Villa Zarza is set in Jan Thiel and offers a shared lounge, a casino and a terrace. The air-conditioned accommodation is 7 km from Nieuwpoort, and guests benefit from private parking available on site and free WiFi. The villa with a patio and pool views has 3 bedrooms, a living room, a flat-screen TV, an equipped kitchen with a microwave and a fridge, and 2 bathrooms with a shower. For added convenience, the property can provide towels and bed linen for an extra charge. Guests can swim in the outdoor swimming pool, go hiking, or relax in the garden and use the barbecue facilities. Willemstad is 7 km from the villa, while Blue Bay is 14 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Villa Sol Paraiso

Located in Jan Thiel, Villa Sol Paraiso provides accommodation with free WiFi, pool views, a garden with an outdoor swimming pool, and access to an indoor swimming pool and a hot tub. Offering garden views, all units come with a coffee machine, a satellite flat-screen TV, ironing facilities and a living room. For added convenience, the property can provide towels and bed linen for an extra charge. The villa offers a children's playground, a barbecue and a terrace. Jan Thiel Bay Beach is less than 1 km from Villa Sol Paraiso.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Curacao Luxury Holiday Rentals

Located in Willemstad, Curacao Luxury Holiday Rentals offers modern apartment with a shared outdoor pool and a private beach area. This property boasts free Wi-Fi. The air-conditioned apartments at this property are equipped with a full kitchen, a seating area and a flat-screen TV. They have a furnished balcony overlooking the water or the gardens. There is a small supermarket just 1.5 km away, while guests can find a wide range of restaurant serving national and international cuisine within a 10-minute drive. Santa Barbara Golf Course can be reached in 20 minutes by car, while Curacao International Airport is just a 15-minute drive away. Mambo Beach is a 5-minute walk from Caribbean Dutch Masters.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Whitehouse Lagun Apartments

Set in Lagun with Lagun Beach nearby, Whitehouse Lagun Apartments offers accommodation with free private parking. The air-conditioned units are furnished with tiled floors and feature a private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, free WiFi, wardrobe, a living room, an equipped kitchen, patio and views over the sea. There is a seating and a dining area in all units. The apartment offers a barbecue. If you would like to discover the area, hiking and snorkelling are possible in the surroundings and Whitehouse Lagun Apartments can arrange a car rental service. Christoffel National Park is 14 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Bed & Bike Curacao - Jan Thiel

Located in Willemstad, 1.4 km from Jan Thiel Bay Beach, Bed & Bike Curacao - Jan Thiel provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, free bikes and an outdoor swimming pool. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and room service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. A terrace, an on-site bar and shared lounge are available. Guests at the hostel can enjoy a continental breakfast. You can play billiards at Bed & Bike Curacao - Jan Thiel, and the area is popular for hiking and cycling. Curacao Sea Aquarium is 8 km from the accommodation, while Queen Emma Bridge is 10 km away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN CURACAO

European-influenced Curaçao dazzles with Dutch-Caribbean architecture, hidden beaches, and spectacular snorkeling and diving just offshore. The candy-colored waterfront architecture of Willemstad, the capital, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and other sights—such as the floating Queen Emma Bridge and the rocky coastline at Shete Boka National Park—are well worth your while, too. But many argue that the island’s best scenery lies beneath the surface of its azure waves. Snorkeling and diving sites (including more than 65 individual dive sites around the island) are easily accessible from the shore, and boat tours out to top sites make it easy to plumb the water’s depths. Snorkel near a sunken tugboat or coral-encrusted pillars, where—if you’re lucky—you might catch a glimpse of a sea horse. You can even dip into the lagoon at the Curacao Sea Aquarium on a tour (snorkeling equipment and aquarium entry fee included) for the chance to swim among stingrays and tropical fish. If you’d rather remain on dry land, off-road tours in dune buggies or ATVs are a popular way to conquer the undeveloped western shore, which is home to historic fishing villages and challenging, hilly terrain. From Willemstad, nearby Klein Curaçao is a popular day trip—reachable by boat, the pristine, uninhabited island is ideal for a day of snorkeling and exploring.

 

 

  • Curacao Ostrich Farm Tours

Get a taste of Africa in the Caribbean at the Curacao Ostrich Farm. Originally opened in 1995 as a working farm to supply ostrich products to South America, the farm quickly became a popular spot for visitors, and now it’s home to about 400 ostriches—about half of which are newborn chicks. When you visit you can take a safari tour in a truck to see ostriches of all ages, from eggs to full grown adults. The farm is also home to emus, potbellied pigs and Nile crocodiles. And if you’re looking for a little more adventure, you can join a quad tour to go four-wheeling across Curacao’s desert island landscape before grabbing a meal at the on-site Zambezi Restaurant, which serves ostrich steaks, burgers and omelets.

Curacao Ostrich Farm Curacao Tickets & Tours - Book Now



 

  • Playa Lagun

Tucked between gray cliffs near the northwestern town of Lagun sits the small but peaceful Playa Lagun. Located in a narrow cove, the calm waters at Playa Lagun are perfect for snorkelers of any skill level, and there are facilities to rent snorkel and scuba gear. Recent travelers lauded the beach for its crystal clear waters and beautiful coral reef, with many saying they spotted colorful fish, schools of squid, sea turtles and more while snorkeling. For the best chance at spotting turtles, visit in the morning.  It may not have the amenities of some of Curaçao's more popular beaches like Playa Porto MAri or Blauwbaai, but this peaceful little cove has plenty of shade and is great for families who want a quiet swim. Plus, unlike many other beaches on the island, admission to Playa Lagun is free. Just make sure to wear water shoes or socks. Like most beaches in Curaçao, the terrain above and below the shore can be rough. Although there isn't much in the way of amenities, you can rent a chair for a small fee and you can also enjoy some refreshment at bar that overlooks the cove. The beach is located just south of the town of Lagun, about 25 miles northwest of Willemstad.

Playa Lagun Curacao par l'artiste Keesnan Dogger Fotografie

 

 

 

  • Off Road Buggy Adventure

Ride a dune buggy over the rugged coast of Curacao during this off-road adventure. On this expedition, follow your guide to some of Curacao's most remote attractions, like the Indian Caves, a coastal blowhole, and the Curacao Ostrich Farm. With your small group of eighteen people or less, get to see many off-the-beaten-path landmarks that traditional tours can't access. Use of all equipment is included. Curacao off-road buggy adventure Explore the island’s secluded northeast shore with an experienced guide Visit natural attractions like the blowhole, Indian caves and Ostrich farm Hear historical and cultural anecdotes about Curacao Small-group tour ensures a more personalized experience

OFF ROAD BUGGY ADVENTURE | Willemstad, Curaçao Activities - Lonely Planet

 


 

  • Cas Abao Beach Tours

Both tourists and locals favor Cas Abao Beach, and it's not hard to see why. The white-sand beach is surrounded by cliffs and lush greenery, and shaded by thatched palapas (large palm umbrellas). Sea turtles, spotted eagle rays and a rainbow of tropical fish beckon snorkelers into warm, turquoise waters. Are your muscles sore from swimming? You can get a full-body massage right on the waterline. Feeling peckish? The Beach Bar & Restaurant offers a range of snacks and drinks that will sustain you all day.  Recent visitors loved Cas Abao beach for its stunning beauty and convenient facilities, although some lamented the extra fees associated with something as simple as a shower. Those who went snorkeling highly recommended it, with many saying they were able to see a diverse array of aquatic life, aka not just fish. Travelers also strongly recommended bringing water shoes or sandals, as the shallows are littered with pebbles and broken coral, which can be hard on your soles.  

Home - Cas Abao Beach


 

 

  • West Coast Catamaran Trip - Visit the Blue Room & Snorkel with Turtles

Visit Curaçao's finest beaches and most pristine coral reefs. Snorkel at the famous Blue Room Cave, encounter the curious sea turtles at Turtle Bay and relax at a secluded, intimate beach! Enjoy a live cooking BBQ buffet, ice cold drinks while cruising along the beautiful coastline of Curaçao. Optional diving at “Mushroom Forest”.

West Coast Catamaran Trip - Visit the Blue Room & Snorkel with Turtles 2020  - Curacao


 

 

  • Private Tour for Two: Romantic Curacao by Land and Sea

Tour Curacao by land and sea with a special someone during this 8-hour adventure for two. Climb into a comfortable SUV with your local guide to see the sights in the rugged eastern and northern areas of the island. Stop for lunch and visit the ostrich and aloe farms, then board a boat in the afternoon to visit secluded inlets on the southern side of the island, many unable to accommodate larger boats. Round-trip hotel transportation, drinks, snacks and engaging commentary from your expert guide are included.

BlueFinn Charters Curacao - Enjoy Retreat

 


 

  • Playa Kalki Tours

Playa Kalki is a small and sandy cove set against a backdrop of limestone cliffs in the peaceful area of Westpunt on the Caribbean island of Curacao. It’s a secluded little spot that’s popular among divers and snorkelers due to its rocky shallows and abundance of coral and other marine life.

Playa Kalki/Alice in Wonderland | Curacao, the Caribbean Getaway


 

 

  • Tugboat Beach Tours

Tugboat Wreck refers to the site of a tugboat that sank just off Curacao years ago and has since become one of the island’s most popular dive sites. The wreck can be found just five meters beneath the surface of the water and can be easily swam out to from the shore near Caracas Bay. The water is clear, the currents mild, and the wreck itself is in good condition and still well intact. It sits upright with coral and marine sponges growing from it and many species of fish swimming all around it.

SeaBob tours at Tugboat beach - Picture of SeaBob Curacao, Willemstad -  Tripadvisor

 


  • Plantation House Jan Kock (Landhuis Jan Kok) Tours

If you’re taking a drive to explore Curacao, plan a stop in Jan Kok, an area along the west coast, about midway between Willemstad and Westpunt. Here you can birdwatch along old salt pans, large shallow ponds used to evaporate salt from seawater, that have become a popular gathering point for pink flamingos as the travel between nearby Bonaire and South America. The birds wade in the warm shallow water grazing on small creatures that live in the water. Also nearby is Landhuis Jan Kok, a former salt plantation from the late 18th century that is now used as a gallery by a local artist.

Landhuis Jan Kok (Sint Willibrordus) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You  Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Handelskade

On the Punda side of Willemstad is Handelskade, that picturesque stretch of pier you've seen on every Curaçao postcard. Colonial Dutch buildings painted in brilliant pinks, blues and yellows line the waters of St. Anna Bay. Grab a seat and a daiquiri at one of Handelskade's outdoor cafes and watch the Queen Emma Bridge swing open to let ships into the harbor or pop in to one of the shops along the water.  If you wake up early enough, you can get your hands on fresh fish and produce at the daily floating market at Handelskade's northern point. Or, you can walk across the bridge at night to see Handelskade's illuminated façades and reflections glinting on the bay. Regardless of what time you visit, you're going to want to snap a picture or two. Past visitors recommended crossing the bridge for the best photo angles. 

The Handelskade - Willemstad, Curacao | Lining the waters of… | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Scuba Diving

If you really want to see some of Curaçao's best sights, you're going to have to get your hair wet. A fascinating world of delicate coral gardens, graceful stingrays, playful dolphins and even sunken ships awaits you in the depths of the Caribbean. The best way to explore it is with a plastic mask strapped to your face and an oxygen tank strapped to your back.  Many of Curaçao's specified dive sites are accessible directly from the beach – try Porto MAri or Blauwbaai – while others must be reached by boat. The enormous star coral formations of the Mushroom Forest are a must-see; afterward, you can take a breather in the sapphire light of the nearby Blue Room cave. You can also explore the coral-encrusted remains of the Superior Producer, a cargo freighter that went down in 1977. 

Diving on Klein Curacao – Book your Trip with Klein Curacao Deals

 

 

 

  • Playa PortoMari

Playa PortoMari is a spot worth stopping for outdoor enthusiasts. Its rehabilitated double reef and on-site snorkel rentals make this beach a fun spot for undersea exploration. The beach also serves as a trailhead for three nature trails, great for hiking or mountain biking. If you're hungry after all the physical activity, you're in luck: Playa Porto Mari features a beach bar and restaurant that serves up enough Indonesian sateys and Dutch kroketten to fill you up for round two in the water or a nap on the sand.  Playa PortoMari does tend to get crowded. But its natural wonders and plentiful amenities (rinsing facilities, clean bathrooms and shaded beach chairs) explain why people flock here. Recent visitors were able to put aside their annoyances with other beachgoers to enjoy what Playa PortoMari has to offer. Many travelers particularly applauded the quality of food served at the restaurant, and recommended coming toward the end of the day for a truly breathtaking sunset. You also might get to meet some pigs and iguanas that frequent the area.

Playa Porto Marie – the wanders

 

 

 

  • Christoffel National Park

In 1978, three plantations near the northern tip of Curaçao merged to create Christoffel National Park. The park houses indigenous flora and fauna, such as barn owls, the rare and endangered Curaçao white-tailed deer and 450 species of plants, including wild orchids. While you can take a scenic drive through Curaçao's largest national park, hiking or mountain biking is the best way to experience Christoffel's rugged landscape.  Recent visitors said the view from the top of Christoffel Mountain is unforgettable. You can climb the peak and back in two to three hours, but due to the high temperatures and lack of shade, the park doesn't allow visitors to start their hike after 10 a.m., so make sure to get there early. Past travelers stressed to bring at least two bottles of water and comfortable shoes, as the terrain gets rockier the closer you get to the summit.  

Christoffel Park | Curacao, Vacances dans les Caraïbes

 

 

 

  • Blauwbaai

Less than 10 miles northwest of Willemstad sits Blauwbaai (Blue Bay), one of Curaçao's most beloved beaches thanks to its plethora of offshore amenities. Just offshore is an impressive coral reef, lauded by scuba divers and snorkelers for its easy accessibility. Recent travelers praise Blauwbaai for its tranquility and natural beauty, both above and below the waves. Others were pleased with the ample shade provided by the beach's swaying palms. But a warning for the dainty-footed: like other beaches on Curaçao, broken rocks and coral litter Blauwbaai's shallows, so watch out for your toes! A few past visitors expressed disappointment with the "overpriced" beach chairs and lackluster food and drink at the nearby bar and restaurant. Still, many described this beach as "lovely" and a "great way to spend a day." Entry to Blauwbaai costs $8 per person.

Blue Bay Golf & Beach Resort, Willemstad, Curaçao - Booking.com

 

 

 

  • Shete Boka National Park

Described by recent visitors as a "breathtaking natural wonder," Shete Boka National Park sprawls across more than 6 miles of Curacao's north coast. It's home to 10 pocket bays where various species of sea turtles are known to lay eggs. Hot spots within the park include Boka Tabla, which sees massive waves crashing into an underground cavern, and Boka Pistol, which offers panoramic views from limestone hills.  Past visitors were in awe of the stunning views from the park, especially those at Boka Pistol. They also warn that the winds can be very strong on this part of the island.

File:SHETE BOKA NATIONAL PARK, CURACAO.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

  • Klein Curaçao (Little Curaçao)

A largely uninhabited island about 15 miles off the southeast coast of Curaçao, Klein Curaçao is the ideal daytrip for snorkelers, scuba divers and sun-worshippers. You will notice a few signs of Klein Curaçao's former residents – like its crumbling, but functional lighthouse – but the tiny island's natural elements are the main reason for visiting. Its coral reefs and waters are pristine, its marine life is plentiful and its white-sand beach is longer than any other on Curaçao proper.   Like its mother island, Klein Curaçao played a sordid role in dealings of the Dutch West India Company during the 17th and 18th centuries. The 1.2-square-mile island is the final resting place of many African slaves who were put in quarantine here for being sick during the dangerous voyage across the Atlantic. After the decline of the slave trade, Klein Curaçao traded hands numerous times, playing host to a phosphate mining operation in 1871. Now, the only frequenters of the island are fishermen and tour groups. But you can still explore the remains of Klein Curaçao's past like the rusting steel hull of the Maria Bianca Guidesman, a small oil tanker that wrecked on the island in the 1960s. Just remember to bring sunscreen – there is little shade on the deserted island.

Mermaid Boat Trips - A trip to Paradise.... Klein Curacao

 

 

 

  • Kurá Hulanda Museum

Located in the home of a 19th-century merchant and slave owner, the Kurá Hulanda Museum traces the history of the African slave trade on Curaçao. Using 18th-century artifacts and scale models to weave its tale, this museum delves into an ugly era in Curaçao's past with a deft hand. Along with exhibits about the trans-Atlantic slave trade, the museum features collections of pre-Columbian gold, Mesopotamian relics and Antillean art. Recent visitors stressed this is not a light-hearted activity, with many leaving the museum feeling somber but humbled by what they learned. Despite the disturbing subject matter, many travelers highly recommend a visit, with some saying they wished they received this kind of history lesson in school. Some suggested paying extra for the guided tour. 

Kura Hulanda Museum - An Honest Appraisal of Curacao's Dark Past - The  Maritime Explorer

 

 

 

 

 

 

FOOD TO EAT IN CURACAO

Daydreams of island vacations usually include sunny visions of pina coladas and freshly caught seafood enjoyed beachside. While Curacao has plenty of both, the country’s blend of influences – African, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, Jewish and more – creates an eclectic cuisine you might not expect to find on an island in the Caribbean. So go ahead and order that fruity frozen cocktail, but make sure to sample some of these must eat dishes and drinks, too.

 

 

  • Bitterballen

This quintessential Dutch snack is as common on Curacao as blue skies and beach chairs. The Netherlands colonized Curacao in the 1600s and it remained under Dutch rule until 2010. Today it’s still part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, but as an autonomous country. Four-hundred-plus years of Dutch in Curacao means that Dutch fried favorites, especially bitterballen, are easy to find at any bar or sidewalk cafe. The beer-friendly bite-sized snack is a breaded, deep-fried ball of gooey beef and gravy and it’s typically served with mustard for dipping. Take a mid-afternoon break for a cold Polar pilsner and a plate of bitterballen – or frikandel (deep-fried sausage) – at Cafe Old Dutch, a laid-back European-styled pub with sports memorabilia on the walls in Willemstad, Curacao’s capital.

Top 10 Things to Eat in Curaçao | Carnival Cruise Line

 

 

 

  • Keshi yena

Curacao’s tangled history includes its role as a center of the transatlantic slave trade. The country’s unofficial national dish is based around Dutch cheeses, but it likely has origins among enslaved Africans. They would turn leftover Edam or Gouda rinds into a meal by stuffing them with spiced chicken, and odds and ends like raisins, then bake the whole thing until the flavors fused. "You can make it different ways, but the best-known way is with chicken and vegetables. They used to wrap it all in a banana leaf and put it in the oven," says Adrian Lake, chef at the upscale Pen restaurant at Willemstad’s Avila Beach Hotel, the longest-running hotel on the island. Lake serves keshi yena – the shredded chicken studded with raisins and olives and wrapped in melted Gouda – with sides of rice, fried plantain, string beans and a krioyo (creole) sauce of onions, paprika, tomato puree and tomato sauce.

Keshi Yena: Curaçao Stuffed Cheese Casserole Recipe - Drop

 

 

 

  • Giambo

When asked about local foods, chef Lake brings up another African-Caribbean dish, giambo. He stops slightly short of recommending it, since the most accurate way to describe the stew, heavy with okra, is "slimy," but admits it definitely belongs on Curacao’s list of must-try meals. The green stew is a mix of okra, fish, salted meat (beef or goat) and basil. Dip a spoon in, pull it up, and you’ll see a trail of okra slime – it’s a love it or hate it texture. Ask for a sample at Plasa Bieu (also called Marshe Bieu) in Willemstad. The busy cafeteria features a row of vendors selling local foods.

Recipe From Curaçao: Giambo | David Rosengarten | Louisiana dishes, How to  cook polenta, Recipes

 

 

 

  • Karni stoba

Plasa Bieu is a good spot to try another ubiquitous dish, karni stoba. The beef stew – also made with kabritu (goat) – is a hearty dish of cubed, marinated meat simmered with different combinations of onions, garlic, cumin, curry, nutmeg, bell peppers and tomatoes. You’ll find it everywhere, from the casual cafeteria to the elegant Restaurant & Cafe Gouveneur de Rouville, set in a historic mansion overlooking the St. Anna Bay and the colorful row of Dutch colonial buildings that line the water.

Beef Stew, Karni Stoba - Picture of Golden Star, Willemstad - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Pumpkin pancakes

Morning is one option for when to eat these sweet, fluffy-yet-dense pumpkin pancakes. But they also work as a cinnamon-sugary side dish with a plate of savory stoba or on their own as a filling snack.

Vendors at Plasa Bieu sell pumpkin pancakes

 

 

 

  • Iguana

You may not want to eat an iguana after spotting the regal lizards roaming around beaches and between tables at outdoor cafes in the more rugged western part of the island. But if you’ve got a hankering, iguana on a plate isn’t hard to find. The go-to spot is Jaanchie’s in Westpunt, an area that’s much less developed than Willemstad to the east. Owner Jan "Jaanchi" Cristiaan stops by every table to talk through food options. If you haven’t had iguana before, he’ll encourage you to order a smaller portion along with something else, like a grouper fillet. It’s not a bad idea, considering the work that goes into eating iguana. It tastes like chicken (of course) but it’s filled with small bones. (On the other hand, as local lore has it, iguana is an aphrodisiac.) Ask for a table by the big open windows so you can watch black and lemon-yellow birds frenetically amass on the hanging bowls Cristiaan fills with sugar.

Jaanchie's is the go-to spot for iguana

 

 

 

  • Pastechi

Located less than 40 miles off the coast of Venezuela, Curacao counts South American cooking among its culinary influences. When you stop at a batidos truck for a mango or soursop shake (skip the milk and sugar for a bright burst of natural sweetness), check out the rest of the menu; chances are good you’ll see a few types of pastechi listed. The savory, crescent-shaped, fried or baked pastry is similar to an empanada, though the dough is usually lighter. Common fillings for this handheld breakfast or snack include Gouda cheese or ground meat.

5 Must-Try Curaçao Local Food – Curacao Activities

 

 

 

  • Lionfish

Seafood on an island is a no-brainer, whether it’s conch with garlic and butter or fried red snapper. But how about fish of the venomous variety? At Sea Side Terrace in Willemstad, Heinrich "Enchi" Ensermo has been feeding locals and tourists at palm tree–shaded tables just steps from the beach for 25 years. His mostly seafood menu often includes lionfish, the striped fish known for its long, venomous spines and its status as an unwelcome invasive species in the Caribbean, as well as other parts of the Atlantic. Getting them out of the water is a good thing – and when you remove their sharp spines, they’re good to eat. Dig into the white, buttery meat with a sprinkle of fiery pika sauce and sides of funchi (polenta) or fries drizzled with mayo and ketchup.

Sea Side Terrace in Curacao

 

 

 

  • Red, green and orange curacao liqueur

It’s no surprise that in a country named Curacao, you’ll find an original distillery that makes authentic curacao liqueur. But here’s something you might not have expected: Senior & Co. makes red, orange, green, clear and the best-known blue curacao – and they all taste exactly the same. The only difference is the color. Spanish conquerors brought Valencia orange trees to the island in the 1500s but the hot, arid climate turned the fruit bitter and eventually created laraha trees, a descendant of Valencia with highly unpleasant oranges. In the late 1800s, business partners Haim Mendes Chumaceiro and Edgar Senior starting using the dried peels of the laraha fruit to make liqueur and bottling it for sale. The distillery that came out of their collaboration is still in operation today, with the original copper kettle imported from Philadelphia, and open for tours and tastings. Make sure to try the tamarind, rum raisin, coffee and chocolate varieties of curacao too.

Turning curacao liqueur its signature bright blue shade

 

 

 

  • Green rum

Curacao has a thing for colored alcohol. But unlike the curacao liqueur, the island’s rom berde, or green rum, doesn’t taste like its clear counterparts. Along with its electric color, the rum has a strong licorice flavor. It's said to have been invented at Netto Bar, a dive in Willemstad’s Otrobanda neighborhood open since 1954 and decorated in old photos, license plates and images of the Dutch royal family. Ask for it mixed with Sprite, or order a shot if you’re feeling daring.

Green rum at Netto Bar in Willemstad's Otrobanda neighborhood

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN CURACAO

Visit the floating market in Willemstad early in the morning, then head to the Punda District to browse the colorful art galleries, wander through gardens selling herbal medicine and botanics, and pick up a bottle of the island’s eponymous liqueur.

 

 

  • Floating Market

Near the pontoon bridge in Handelskade in Willemstad, wooden boats from Venezuela dock alongside the canal, and vendors here sell just-caught fish and tropical fruits and vegetables (plantains, citrus, papayas, avocados) directly from the quay under the shade of tents. Mornings are the best time to visit, for the finest selection of produce, the cooler temperatures before the midday sun shines, and the pleasant ambience of the hours before the crowds arrive.

Floating Market in Punda, Eastside of Willemstad, Curaçao - Encircle Photos

 

 

 

  • Den Paradera

Herbal medicine dates back to the earliest days of civilization. This desert oasis, outside of Willemstad, is run by herbalist Dinah Veeris. The garden has more than 300 species of plants, some familiar (dandelions, artichokes, chamomile) and others more exotic (calabash and rare cacti). In the shop, there’s a variety of elixirs, oils and soaps to treat all sorts of ailments likes headaches, colds and flus and stress.

 

 

 

  • Nena Sanchez Gallery

Curaçao native Nena Sanchez is known for her colorful Caribbean canvases bursting with tropical flowers, picturesque cottages and underwater sea life, as well as cacti and banana and palm trees. Her downtown gallery offers reasonably priced prints as well as framed and unframed acrylic paintings.

Nena Sanchez Gallery | Curacao, the Caribbean Getaway

 

 

 

  • Windstraat

Ramble down this scenic Punda road, and you'll soon encounter two of the island's most renowned art galleries. Serena Art Shop is famous for its handpainted Curaçao Chichi figure, while visitors can't get enough of the Nena Sanchez Gallery's striking island-themed paintings and giclées (prints). On the next street over, SilvanyRoss, a charming shop, features one-of-a-kind souvenirs sourced from local entrepreneurs and artists, from wood-carved coasters to oil paintings and handmade purses. Get to Windstraat on the early side; most of its stores and galleries close up by 5 p.m.

Windstraat | Willemstad | Curaçao | AFAR

 

 

 

  • Punda District

Willemstad’s first colonial settlement started as a hub for Dutch slave traders. Now a World Heritage site, this modern city center has a distinct Euro-Caribbean atmosphere, its preserved colonial buildings housing fashion boutiques, art galleries, and sidewalk cafés. Wander down Punda's narrow cobblestoned alleys, then snap a signature photo at the Wilhelminaplein’s giant Curaçao and Dushi signs. The neighborhood gets extra lively during the free Punda Vibes event every Thursday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., featuring an outdoor market, live music, and local folkloric dancing.

Nice shopping district - Review of Punda, Willemstad, Curacao - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Mambo Beach Boulevard

Mambo Beach Boulevard has more of the ambiance of a beach party than that of a conventional shopping mall. It features some 50 restaurants, bars and stores, including souvenir retailers and boutiques selling swimwear (as well as everything else you might need for a day in the sun). There are also water-sports operators, and your time browsing can be broken up by some time on the beach. There’s even a nightclub with a schedule of live performances that keeps the energy going into the afternoon and evening.

Mambo Beach Boulevard | Willemstad | Curaçao | AFAR

 

 

SUNNUNTAI, 18. LOKAKUUTA 2020
SURINAME, SOUTH AMERICA

Incredible drone footage of Suriname: an introduction by All Suriname Tours  - YouTube

South America's smallest country, Suriname is a warm, dense convergence of rivers that thumps with the lively rhythm of ethnic diversity. From Paramaribo, the country's effervescent Dutch-colonial capital, to the fathomless jungles of the interior, you'll get a genuine welcome to the country – whether from the descendants of escaped African slaves, Dutch and British colonialists, Indian, Indonesian and Chinese indentured laborers or indigenous Amerindians.

Charismatic Paramaribo is loaded with gorgeous architecture, party-hard night spots and some excellent restaurants, while the untamed jungle, just a few hours away by road or boat, could not be more of a contrast to Paramaribo's chaotic traffic. It's relatively easy to get around this river-heavy, forest-dense country, even if the mix of languages can make communications interesting. Best of all, sumptuous and spicy cuisines from all over the world can be found here, making mealtimes a joy.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT SURINAME

The best time to visit Suriname is from February until mid-April and from mid-August to mid-November. This is the period with the lowest amount of rainfall. Be aware that in Suriname it will be warm and humid throughout the whole year.

 

March through May

Humidity and temperatures combine to make this season feel warm. Highs range from 88.1°F (31.2°C) and 85.8°F (29.9°C) with similar temperatures in the later months. Rain is very common with 10 to 16 days of significant precipitation per month. Spring is the slowest for tourism, which makes it a good time for those looking for deals.

June through August

The middle-year months have very comfortable weather with high temperatures that are quite warm. These months see the most precipitation with 9 to 17 days of precipitation per month. June – August is the busiest season for tourism in Paramaribo, so lodging and other accommodations may cost more than usual.

September through November

Fall daily highs range from 93°F (33.9°C) and 89.2°F (31.8°C), which will feel very nice given the humidity and wind. It rains or snows a significant amount: 5 to 9 days per month. Tourism is the second busiest during these months due to the weather, so hotels may be slightly higher priced.

December through February

Weather is perfect this time of year in Paramaribo to be enjoyable for warm weather travelers. The average high during this season is between 89.5°F (31.9°C) and 84.9°F (29.4°C). On average, it rains or snows a great amount: 10 to 12 times per month. These times of year are fairly slow with tourists.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO SURINAME

There are three flights per week from Guyana to Paramaribo via Surinam Airways. You can also travel from Guyana to Suriname and even to French Guiana by land. From Guyana, you need to ride a ferry and bus to get to Paramaribo.

Suriname Airport: Paramaribo Zanderij (PBM)

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND SURINAME

There are few roads in Suriname, so don’t expect to be able to travel by car or public transport far from the coastal cities. To add complication, there are no scheduled internal flights, so chartering light aircraft is your best bet. Although this can be expensive it is, at least, a spectacular way to see the country. It is possible to travel by land from Paramaribo to the borders of Guyana and French Guiana by state-run buses, but routes, costs and departure times are liable to change at short notice.

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN SURINAME 

 

  • Jacana Amazon Wellness Resort

Featuring free WiFi and a year-round outdoor pool, Jacana Amazon Wellness Resort offers accommodation in Paramaribo, 2.9 km from Paramaribo Central Market. The resort has a children's playground and spa center, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant or a drink at the bar. Free private parking is available on site. All rooms at Jacana Amazon Wellnes resort come with a flat-screen TV. Certain rooms feature a seating area, a terrace or balcony to relax in after a busy day. Rooms also include private bathroom. For your comfort, you will find bath robes, free toiletries and a hair dryer. Superior rooms include a spa bath or a hot tub. There is a 24-hour front desk at the property. Suriname Museum is 100 m from Jacana Amazon Wellness Resort. The nearest airport is Zanderij Airport, 40 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Overbridge River Resort

Overbridge River Resort has a private beach area and free WiFi. Providing a restaurant, the property also has an outdoor swimming pool and a garden. The property features a terrace and a 24-hour front desk. At the hotel, rooms include a balcony. The rooms are fitted with a private bathroom with free toiletries. The units at Overbridge River Resort feature air conditioning and a wardrobe. An American breakfast is served daily at the property. Paramaribo Central Market is 49 km from the accommodation, while Surinaams Museum is 49 km away.

Overbridge River Resort- Paramaribo, Suriname Hotels- Hotels in Paramaribo-  GDS Reservation Codes | TravelAge West

 

 

 

  • Joah Inn Appartementen

Offering a garden and outdoor pool, Joah Inn Appartementen is located in Paramaribo. Paramaribo Central Market is 400 m away. The accommodation has a seating and dining area. A TV with cable channels and DVD player are available in some units. Some units also have a kitchen, equipped with a microwave. Each unit is fitted with a private bathroom with a shower. Bed linen is featured. Joah Inn Appartementen also includes a sun terrace. Guests can enjoy the on-site bar and restaurant. Waterkant is 400 m from Joah Inn Appartementen. Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport is 42 km from the property.

Joah Inn Appartementen, Paramaribo - 2020 Reviews, Pictures & Deals

 

 

 

  • Hotel Babylon

Situated in Paramaribo, 6 km from Paramaribo Central Market, Hotel Babylon has a restaurant, a bar and a shared lounge. Boasting family rooms, this property also provides guests with a terrace. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. The rooms in the hotel are fitted with a kettle. At Hotel Babylon rooms come with a wardrobe, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. The accommodation offers a continental or à la carte breakfast. Surinaams Museum is 3.2 km from Hotel Babylon, while Waterkant is 7 km from the property.

Hotel Babylon, Paramaribo, Suriname - Booking.com

 

 

 

  • Waterland Suites

Set within 5 km of Paramaribo Central Market and 1.6 km of Surinaams Museum, Waterland Suites provides rooms in Paramaribo. With a garden, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. There is free private parking and the property offers paid airport shuttle service. At the hotel, all rooms have a desk and a flat-screen TV. All guest rooms will provide guests with a wardrobe and a kettle. Waterkant is 6 km from Waterland Suites, while St. Petrus en Paulus kathedraal is 6 km from the property.

Waterland Suites (Paramaribo, Suriname), Paramaribo hotel discounts |  Hotels.com

Waterland Suites Hotel (Paramaribo) - Deals, Photos & Reviews

 

 

 

  • Guesthouse AlbergoAlberga

Offering an outdoor pool, a terrace and a garden, Guesthouse AlbergoAlberga is located 10 minutes’ walk from Paramaribo Central Market. Free WiFi access is available in public areas. Each room here will provide you with a seating area and ironing facilities. The private bathroom also comes with a bath or shower and free toiletries. At Guesthouse AlbergoAlberga you will find a 24-hour front desk and free parking. Other facilities offered at the property include luggage storage, shops (on site) and an ironing service. The property is 200 m from Waterkant and 600 m from Surinam Museum. St. Petrus en Paulus kathedraal is 200 m away and Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport is 47 km away.

HOTEL GUESTHOUSE ALBERGOALBERGA PARAMARIBO 2* (Suriname) - from US$ 41 |  BOOKED

 

 

 

  • Riverside Bungalow Comm.

Riverside Bungalow Comm. Is situated in Meerzorg and offers a restaurant, an outdoor swimming pool and a garden. The air-conditioned accommodation is 9 km from Paramaribo, and guests benefit from complimentary WiFi and private parking available on site. The apartment has 2 bedrooms, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, an equipped kitchen with a microwave and a fridge, a washing machine, and 1 bathroom with a shower. The apartment offers a barbecue. If you would like to discover the area, fishing is possible in the surroundings and Riverside Bungalow Comm. Can arrange a car rental service.

Riverside Bungalow Comm., Meerzorg, Suriname - Booking.com

 

 

 

  • Liberdada Suites

Liberdada Suites has an outdoor swimming pool, bar, a shared lounge and garden in Wanica. Boasting family rooms, this property also provides guests with a barbecue. Free private parking is available and the guest house also features bike hire for guests who want to explore the surrounding area. All rooms in the guest house are fitted with air conditioning, a seating area, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a kitchen, a dining area and a private bathroom with a hairdryer, a hot tub and a shower. The units will provide guests with a wardrobe and a kettle. A continental breakfast is available each morning at Liberdada Suites. At the accommodation guests are welcome to take advantage of a hot tub. The area is popular for cycling, and car hire is available at Liberdada Suites. The guest house provides an ironing service, as well as business facilities like fax and photocopying. Paramaribo is 17 km from Liberdada Suites.

Liberdada Suites, Lelydorp: Info, Photos, Reviews | Book at Hotels.com

 

 

 

  • Pavema apartments

Featuring an outdoor pool, pavema apartments in Paramaribo provides accommodation with free WiFi and free private parking for guests who drive. All of the air-conditioned units feature a private bathroom, living room, flat-screen TV, fully-equipped kitchen and balcony. The apartment offers a barbecue. A car rental service is available at pavema apartments. Paramaribo Central Market is 6 km from the accommodation, while Surinaams Museum is 4.3 km away.

pavema apartments in Paramaribo, Suriname - reviews, prices | Planet of  Hotels

 

 

 

  • De Plantage

De Plantage features a restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, a bar and garden in Tamanredjo. Featuring family rooms, this property also provides guests with a sun terrace. Free private parking is available and the resort also offers bike hire for guests who want to explore the surrounding area. The units at the resort come with a seating area. At De Plantage all rooms are equipped with a wardrobe and a private bathroom. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a continental breakfast. Guests at De Plantage will be able to enjoy activities in and around Tamanredjo, like fishing. Speaking English and Dutch at the reception, staff will be happy to provide guests with practical information on the area. Paramaribo is 27 km from the resort.

Resort De Plantage, Tamanredjo, Suriname - Booking.com

 

 

 

  • Elegance Hotel & Casino

Located in Paramaribo and with Paramaribo Central Market reachable within 1.2 km, Elegance Hotel & Casino features express check-in and check-out, allergy-free rooms, a restaurant, free WiFi throughout the property and a bar. With a shared lounge, the property also features water sports facilities, as well as a casino. The hotel provides an outdoor swimming pool, fitness centre, evening entertainment and a 24-hour front desk. Guest rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel each room is fitted with a wardrobe and a private bathroom. Elegance Hotel & Casino offers a continental or buffet breakfast. The accommodation offers a terrace. Guests can sing karaoke, plan their trips at the tour desk, or make use of the business centre. Waterkant is 2.2 km from Elegance Hotel & Casino, while St. Petrus en Paulus kathedraal is 2.2 km away.

Elegance Hotel & Casino, Paramaribo, Suriname - Booking.com

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN SURINAME

Suriname is a small country in north east South America.  It’s a combination of tropical rainforest, roaring rivers, Dutch colonial history, and great ethnic diversity.  You can divide your time between the dense and untamed interior jungles and the lively modern cities with shopping, fantastic restaurants, and surprising night-spots.  Locals include descendants of British and Dutch colonialists, African slaves, Indonesians, Indians, and Chinese indentured servants, and indigenous Amerindians. Communicating is fun with so many languages floating around, and so is the eating.  Be prepared for spicy and fantastic everywhere you go. Here’s the list of Turisti-Info to the best places to visit & things to do in Suriname!

 

 

  • Monkey around in Brownsberg Nature Park

Of all the jungles of Suriname, the thick canopy of Brownsberg Nature Park is the most likely to show you the faces of its inhabitants. Trek among the 1,500 types of plants to seek out the plethora of primates that call Brownsberg home. The noisiest of these are the howler monkeys. Follow the sound of their bark-like call to the treetops where you can see both red and black howler monkeys swinging from the branches. Another vocal animal to listen out for is the grey-winged trumpeters – a long-legged bird often found strutting across the jungle floor, singing its song. It’s one of more than 400 species of birds that can be found here. If the park's creatures are feeling shy, the surrounding scenery will ensure your day isn’t wasted. Choose a trail and walk to one of the four waterfalls, cooling off in their spray. Or hike to the viewpoint at Marazoni Top for panoramic views over the jungle and clear blue lakes.

Red Howler Monkey | Suriname: Brownsberg | randy.siebert | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Visit plantations in Commewijne

Named after the vast, mud-coloured river it sits upon, Commewijne’s colonial houses keep its history alive. Visit the now abandoned wooden buildings, which were once powerful plantations, to understand the sad history of the sugar plantations. You'll also learn how cocoa and coffee factories once operated. Pay a visit to the museum of Marienburg, a repurposed sugar plantation, to help deepen your understanding of the history. Next, head to the exact spot where the Commewijne and Suriname rivers converge, where you’ll find Fort Nieuw Amsterdam. This polygon-shaped fortress played a significant role in the past as it was built to protect the crop fields from attack. Just a bit of time spent wandering its grounds will transport you back to the tumultuous 19th century.

Suriname, One Day Tour: Commewijne Plantation - Does Travel & Cadushi Tours

 

 

 

  • Visit the capital, Paramaribo

From the neat rows of wooden houses, to the equally tidy patches of grass that decorate the outside of them, you can see the Dutch influence on this capital in almost every detail and every direction you look. For extra colonial charm, head to Paramaribo’s downtown, Foto. But it’s not just about the colonial architecture. Spend a little time walking the streets of the city and you’ll soon see it for the exciting, eclectic capital that it is. Synagogues stand alongside mosques, near Hindu temples and Christian churches - all of which are worth admiring. For more cultural diversity, head to the market where the smell of spices from all over the world waft above the hectic and crowded stalls. If it’s food you’re after, stay on the bottom floor. Go up a level for shopping, and to search for bright clothing.

The perfect 10: Paramaribo, Suriname

 

 

 

  • Taste the famous rum

This white-washed wooden house with its neat surrounding gardens looks like a lot of the others in Paramaribo, though it hides some spicy secrets inside. Open the door of the Surinamese Rum House to discover the award-winning rums mixed inside. See the authentic copper pot they’re made in, the oak barrels being crafted, and meet the man behind secret recipes for these popular concoctions. Be sure to book into a tasting session, where you can become a rum connoisseur and participate in one of the mixology classes. Shake, mix and pour to your heart's content, and reward yourself with a sip of your own creation.

Surinaamsch Rumhuis is een museum in Paramaribo

Suriname House of Rum

 

 

 

  • Soak up the culture along the Upper Suriname River

The Suriname River is the heart of the country named after it – so why wouldn’t you want to travel along it? Take a boat down the jungle-clad Upper Suriname and enjoy the peace and quiet, only broken by the sound of monkeys chattering across the banks and the squawk of the birds. The real lure, however, are the culturally-rich villages on either side of the river. Every so often, the jungle will break to reveal a community of rustic houses, where the Saramaka people live, offering a real eye-opener into their way of life. Listen to the stories of their ancestry, how they came to be here, and of their customs and traditions. It would be a real shame to rush a river trip, so don’t. There are many eco-lodges to suit all budgets spread out along the banks. Plan in some pit stops to turn the tour into a multi-day meander.

Irresistible Suriname | Better Places Travel | 100% tailor-made

 

 

 

  • Climb Voltzberg Mountain

Jutting out of the green-drenched Voltzberg Nature Reserve, like a dusty rock from outer space is the park’s namesake – the Voltzberg Mountain. This 240m-high peak is best climbed at sunrise. On the way up, expect to see birdlife, along with myriad species of monkey.  After around four hours, you’ll be at the top of the giant, granite monolith. Here, you can enjoy views of the rising and dipping dark green treetops, extending far into the horizon, where they seemingly touch the glowing pink sky. Once back at the bottom, make sure you explore the many falls nearby, where you can watch the water rushing over rocks, cool down and have fun in the rapids.

Great tour, real jungle experience - Review of Voltzberg Dome, Sipaliwini  District, Suriname - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Watch turtles lay their eggs

Watching these slow, gentle giants nesting down to lay their eggs, in the warm sands that fringe the Atlantic Ocean, is a sight that will stay with you forever. Increase your chances of witnessing the phenomenon by heading to the huge stretch of copper-coloured sand that makes up Matapica Beach, arguably the best place in Suriname for turtle spotting. Between February and May, you’ll likely see green turtles nesting. Go between April and July to see leatherbacks. If you’re really lucky, you may even catch the rare sight of a hawksbill turtle laying their eggs. Another hot spot to try is the turtle sanctuary in Galibi Nature Reserve, where green, leatherback, hawksbill, and the rare olive ridley turtles come to find refuge on the beach. 

Spotting Sea Turtles in Suriname - Popular Places Suriname

 

 

 

  • Walking and trekking

Walking is more than just a way of getting exercise. It’s a means of slowing down, admiring the scenery, getting close to wildlife and meeting the locals. You can connect with the world in a way you can't in a car, reaching hidden spots that mdern transportation could never take you to. Whether you want a short stroll around a city or a heart-pumping trek through the wildest landscapes of Suriname Nature Reserve Parks.

Brownsberg and Stuwmeer 2020 - Paramaribo

 

 

 

  • Joden Savanne

Just south of Paramaribo, on the Suriname River, is Joden Savanne, or Jews’ savannah. Established in the 17th century, it was originally an agricultural community that was developed by Spanish Jews fleeing persecution.  Sugarcane plantations were the main crop and slaves were used here for a long time.  From the beginning, the community faced difficulties from nearby sugar beet plantations They also dealt with disease, revolts by indigenous people, and heavy taxation.  Eventually the community relocated to Para.  You can visit the ruins of the first synagogue in the Western Hemisphere as well as the old gravesites there.

Jodensavanne

 

 

  • Arya Dewaker

This Hindu temple is the largest in Suriname and is located in Paramaribo. It’s arguably the most important in the country to the 30,000+ Hindu’s who live there.   Designed by a Dutch architect, the building is a two-story octagonal building with meeting rooms, a library, and ceremony room. Everything in the temple is designed to reflect aspects of the sun and though there are no images of deities, you’ll find plenty of Sanskrit and Hindi symbolism. The architect works to combine the Dutch style with the ancient Moghul style from India, as well as a bit of Moorish design.  The result it truly unique.

Arya Dewaker

 

 

 

  • Presidential Palace of Suriname and the Garden of Palms

Located in the capital across from Independence Square, the presidential palace is one of the best examples of Dutch colonial architecture in Suriname.  Part of the inner city’s UNESCO World Heritage designation, it was built in the 18th century, and is still the presidents home.  Most commonly used for diplomatic events thanks to the Garden of Palms attached to the property. This palm tree landscape has a wide variety of trees as well the capuchin monkeys and many tropical birds.

Presidential Palace, Paramaribo

 

 

 

  • Suriname Mosque and Neveh Shalom Synagogue

The largest Mosque in the Caribbean is Mosque Keizerstraat, located in Paramaribo.  It is a beautiful building with stunning gardens around it. No machinery was used during construction and thus it took 20 years to complete.  Not only is it an impressive place of worship it’s unique because of its next door neighbour, the Nevah Shalom Synagogue.  Built in the 19th century it has a sandy floor as a symbol of the Hebrews 40 years in the desert. Locals take great pride in the location of these two places of worship and feel it’s a reflection of their multi-ethnicity community.

Synagogue and Mosque

 

 

 

  • St Peter and St Paul Cathedral

Another part of Para’s UNESCO World Heritage site is the Roman Catholic St Peter and St Paul Cathedral.  It’s the largest wooden building in the Western Hemisphere and was built in the 19th century. The exterior of the cathedral has long intrigued visitors.  Painted grey and yellow, no one seems to know the exact reasons behind the colour scheme.  In 2015 Pope Francis designated it as a minor basilica.

St Peter and St Paul Cathedral

 

 

 

  • Onafhankelijkheidsplein

Also known as Independence Square, Onafhankelijkheidsplein, is home to some of the most important buildings in Suriname:  the colonial government buildings as well at the stately presidential palace.  In many ways, it’s an average square which is perfect for an afternoon nap or a picnic lunch, you also might be lucky enough to stumble upon a signing bird competition. The birds, known as twatwa, are popular in Suriname and enthusiasts like to bring them together to compete.  Don’t look to understand how the winner is chosen; the mystery is part of the fun.

Onafhankelijkheidsplein

 

 

 

  • Around Paramaribo

Just outside of the city you’ll find a phenomenal savannah white-sand forest, a jungle full of wildlife, and cold streams where the clean water runs black thanks to the fallen leaves.  If you’re interested in a sloth sighting, this is the place.  You can also see saki monkeys, giant anteaters, tamarins, and a large number of exotic birds.  If you really want to leave the city behind for a bit, you can camp near Colakreek for a few days while you explore the forest and savannah.

Colakreek

 

 

 

  • Mariënburg

Founded in the 18th century as a sugar cane plantation, Mariënburg now has a production factory on site and is primarily a tourist attraction.  The first railroad in Suriname was built to bring the sugarcane from the village into the city and you can still travel by train to get there.  It’s a good way to see the country and a fun day excursion from Para.

Mariënburg

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN SURINAME

There are some fantastic dining opportunities in Parbo. Avoid, if possible, the touristy strip across from Hotel Torarica, and head instead for some of the more in-the-know places listed here. The cheapest city-center options are at the frenetic Central Market and the Indonesian stalls along Waterkant. Eating in Suriname (www.eteninsuriname.com) is a useful website with information on restaurants in Paramaribo.

 

 

  • Blauwgrond

Family-run Javanese restaurants (open for dinner only) line Blauwgrond, a laid-back residential area about 10 minutes by taxi from downtown Paramaribo. Rena, Mirioso, Pawiro and Saoto are some of the better known spots, but any of them will serve cheap and delicious noodle, rice and soup dishes. It's worth making this trip for the ambience alone.

WARUNG BLAUWGROND, The Hague - Restaurant Reviews & Photos - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Bodega & Grill De Waag

This gorgeously realised addition to Parbo's eating choices has seen the transformation of an old waterfront building into a smart and stylish indoor-outdoor eating space and bar, with a great menu focused on (but not limited to) steaks, all of which come US Department of Agriculture (USDA) certified and are the best in the city. Also available are good salads, tapas, soups and breakfasts.

Tuna - Picture of Bodega & Grill de Waag, Paramaribo - Tripadvisor

 

 

  • Souposo

From delicious daily soups to mains like duck leg confit in masala and an amazing pesto pasta topped with home-smoked bang bang (freshwater fish) and sundried tomatoes, the food here would stand out anywhere, but in Parbo it's exceptional. Brunch includes omelets, fresh juices and salads. The heritage-home garden setting makes the experience even more lovely.

Souposo - Soup Place - Paramaribo | Airbnb®

 

 

 

  • Martin's House of Indian Food

Tasty home-cooked Indian delights from a voluminous menu await you at Martin's, located in the Rainville neighborhood and well worth the SR$10 cab ride from the old town. It's true, you don't come here for the decor or ambience particularly, but the excellent spicy cooking and warm welcome from Martin and his family makes all that irrelevant.

VIDEO: Mind-Blowing Indian Thali in Suriname at Martin House of Indian Food  | Paramaribo, Suriname - David's Been Here

 

 

 

  • CY Coffee + Roasters

Excellent coffee is served in this giant wood-, glass- and concrete-heavy space that looks quite unlike anywhere else in Parbo, yet much like any coffee specialist elsewhere in the modern world. It's a good spot for a late breakfast, with a big selection of freshly baked goods, as well a full menu of Chinese-leaning dishes. Take a taxi.

Great decor however menu lacks vegetarian/healthy options - Review of CY  Coffee, Paramaribo, Suriname - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Zus & Zo

This restaurant and bar serves up some of the best food and cocktails in town in a charming sand-floored garden with fairy lights. Dishes range from Surinamese soups to noodles, burgers and salads. Live music is played here on occasion and the welcome is warm and friendly.

Zus & Zo, Paramaribo - Restaurant Reviews, Phone Number & Photos -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • De Gadri

This quiet outdoor restaurant overlooking the river has Parbo's best Creole food along with exceptionally friendly service. Try the delicious soup of the day – peanut, cassava or banana accompanied by roast chicken and pom, a kind of casserole.

DE GADRI, Paramaribo - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Sushi-Ya

This great sushi bar offers seating at tables or at its sociable counter. Service is terrific and friendly, and the Japanese chefs prepare excellent sushi and sashimi, which makes for a much-needed change of pace in Parbo's dining scene.

SUSHI-YA, Paramaribo - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Carali Roti

Small roti shop that beats the chains in town for both taste and price.

Surinamese Food - Amsterdam, Netherlands | Local Food Guide

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN SURINAME

 

 

  • ReadyTex Craft & Souvenir Shop

Step off the chaotic streets and enter these five glorious floors of colorful local sculpture and paintings, all of which are for sale. Get all your Suriname souvenirs, handicrafts and more at this big shop.

Readytex | Lobi, This is us, Suriname

 

 

 

  • Central Market

The frenzied and fascinating central market is divided into distinct areas: the meat, fish, fruit and vegetable sections on the lower floor and a less photogenic clothing area on the upper. The 'Witch's Market' (aka the Maroon Market; no photography allowed) has a separate entrance just to the west on Waterkant, and sells herbs, bones, shells and mysterious concoctions. It's best to get to these markets before noon.

Central Market, Paramaribo Suriname | Central Market, Parama… | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Zus & Zo

High-quality Suriname handicrafts and jewelry, head to the gift shop at Zus & Zo.

ZUS & ZO GUESTHOUSE - Updated 2020 Prices & Guest house Reviews  (Suriname/Paramaribo) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

PERJANTAI, 16. LOKAKUUTA 2020
JORDAN, MIDDLE EAST

 

Best Time to Visit Jordan | PV Travels - Tailor Made Tours and Trips

A safe haven in a region of conflict, Jordan has delighted visitors for centuries with its World Heritage Sites, friendly towns and inspiring desert landscapes.

 

Ancient Hospitality

Jordan has a tradition of welcoming visitors: camel caravans plied the legendary King’s Highway transporting frankincense in exchange for spices while Nabataean tradesmen, Roman legionnaires, Muslim armies and zealous Crusaders all passed through the land, leaving behind impressive monuments. These monuments, including Roman amphitheatres, Crusader castles and Christian mosaics, have fascinated subsequent travellers in search of antiquity and the origins of faith. The tradition of hospitality to visitors remains to this day.

Petra: A World Wonder

Petra, the ancient Nabataean city locked in the heart of Jordan’s sandstone escarpments, is the jewel in the crown of the country’s many antiquities. Ever since explorer Jean Louis Burckhardt brought news of the pink-hued necropolis back to Europe in the 19th century, the walk through the Siq to the Treasury (Petra’s defining monument) has impressed even the most travel weary of visitors. With sites flung over a vast rocky landscape and a mood that changes with the shifting light of dawn and dusk, this is a highlight that rewards a longer visit.

Desert Landscapes

Take a ride through Wadi Rum at sunset, and it's easy to see why TE Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) was so drawn to this land of weathered sandstone and reddened dunes. But Jordan's desert landscapes are not confined to the southeast: they encompass a salt sea at the lowest point on earth, canyons flowing with seasonal water, oases of palm trees and explosions of springtime flowers scattered across arid hills. Minimal planning and only a modest budget is required for an adventure.

Safe Haven

It takes tolerance to host endless waves of incomers, and Jordan has displayed that virtue amply, absorbing thousands of refugees from the Palestinian Territories, Iraq and most recently Syria. Despite contending with this and with large numbers of tourists who are often insensitive to conservative Jordanian values, rural life in particular has managed to keep continuity with the traditions of the past. While Jordan faces the challenges of modernisation and growing urbanisation, it remains one of the safest countries in which to gain an impression of the quintessential Middle East.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT JORDAN

The best times to visit Jordan are in the spring and autumn, when the days are warm, with temperatures into the high twenties, but the nights are cool. This climate is pleasant and perfect for exploring — it is not too hot for hiking in the nature reserves and both flora and fauna are abundant. Jordan’s summer months are very hot, with temperatures reaching up into the forties. However, it is still worth considering a trip at this time if you are not adversely affected by heat, as you will have sites like Petra almost to yourself. Jordan experiences snow in the winter months and the nights get cold, especially in the desert regions. Winter is also when the majority of the rain falls, but showers tend to be short and sharp.

 

January - February - The winter months in Jordan are very cold: Amman is typically assailed by biting winds, while Petra experiences snowfall and temperatures hovering a few degrees below freezing. Around Aqaba and the Dead Sea the climate is warmer and more pleasant. January is also the wettest month of the year.

March - In March the country emerges from the chilly temperatures of winter, and the rainiest time of year is over. As this is only the start of spring the sites are still relatively quiet. However, nights in the desert can be quite cold still.

April - May - Wildflowers coat the valleys and even the desert from April through to early June, creating a kaleidoscope of colour across the country. Temperatures are warm but not too hot and, thanks to winter's rain, the valleys and forests are lush. This is one of the most popular times to visit Jordan.

June - August - The heat increases over the summer months from June to August, so if you plan on visiting during this time we advise taking lots of water and finding shade often. However, this is dry heat rather than being humid, so if you don't mind the high temperatures it can still be comfortable. As this is the low season, hotels tend to decrease their rates accordingly.

September - Although still a summer month, towards the end of September temperatures do start to cool off slightly.

October - November - Autumn isn't always a particularly distinct season in Jordan, although it falls roughly from the end of September through to the end of November. Temperatures have cooled from the heat of summer but are not yet into the depths of the winter chill, and there is often a bit of rain around mid-October which provides sustenance to the ground after a dry few months, creating green landscapes once again. This is a very pleasant time to visit Jordan.

December - December is the start of the winter season in Jordan, with temperatures plummeting and rain and snow often falling throughout throughout the country. However, this is a quiet time to visit, so sites may be empty.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO JORDAN

With daily international flights and plenty of overland transport options, getting to Jordan has never been easier. Whether you are flying from far afield or traveling to Jordan via a neighboring country, there are plenty of ways to get to Jordan.

 

Getting to Jordan By Plane - The main airport in Jordan is Queen Alia International Airport which is home to popular national airlines including Royal Jordanian. Visitors can get to Jordan by plane from almost any country on a daily basis. Visitors can fly directly into Queen Alia International Airport from many European cities including London, as well as North America and Asia. Those flying from Austrailia, New Zealand, and South Africa should note that there are no direct flights into Jordan however it is possible to get a connecting flight via Thailand and other surrounding nations. The airport is located just 30 km from the capital city of Amman making it the best option for those who wish to get around easy.

Getting to Jordan By Boat - For those who are comprising both Egypt and Jordan into their trip, it is possible to get into Jordan across the Gulf of Aqaba by ferry. Visitors can choose between the Meenagate ferry or AB Martime. Both companies depart from the charming coastal town of Nuweiba in Egypt and arrive in the equally beautiful city of Aqaba in Jordan. From Aqaba, visitors can explore the ancient ruins and museums of the city before traveling onward to Amman or Petra. The Meenagate ferry departs from Nuweiba at 6 am and costs 85 USD one way or 125 USD return. The AB Martime provides both fast and slow routes with the fast route only taking one hour. The cost of the fast ferry is 70 USD for a second class one way trip or 90 USD for first class.

Getting to Jordan With a Tour Group - Another way to get to Jordan is by joining a pre-booked tour group. These tour groups are excellent if you wish to see more than one destination in Jordan and prefer someone else to organize it all. The tour groups usually consist of flights and overland transport through Jordan whilst covering the most beautiful sites.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND JORDAN

Getting around Jordan by public transport can be tricky – it's a bit of a hotchpotch. Bus routes cover what’s necessary for the locals and there is little or no provision for independent travellers. Getting around Jordan by public transport can be tricky – it's a bit of a hotchpotch. Bus routes cover what’s necessary for the locals and there is little or no provision for independent travellers. 

By Bus - The most common way of getting around Jordan is by bus, most of which are fifteen- or eighteen-seater minibuses. Some larger buses and air-conditioned coaches also serve as public transport. Timetables are rarely in operation: buses tend to depart only when they’re full. This means that, on less-travelled routes especially, you should factor in sometimes quite considerable waiting time for the bus to fill up.

By train - Travelling around Jordan by train isn’t possible as there are no scheduled passenger services. The historic, narrow-gauge Hejaz Railway (jhr. gov.jo), running from Damascus to Amman and south into the desert, has been taken out of service and now only hosts occasional specials, usually chartered by foreign tour operators and steam enthusiasts.A proposal to launch tourist shuttles on the freight line between Aqaba and Wadi Rum – used for trains carrying phosphates to port from desert mines – has so far come to nothing.

Domestic flights in Jordan - Royal Jordanian operates the only domestic flights two or three times daily between Amman (Queen Alia) and Aqaba. Flight time is little over thirty minutes. At around  ($70.50) one-way, it isn’t prohibitively expensive, and means you can travel from city centre to city centre in around an hour and a half (including check-in and ground transfers), compared with more than four hours overland. In addition, the airborne views over the desert, the Dead Sea and the Petra mountains are exceptional. Just make sure you’re sitting on the right-hand side heading south.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN JORDAN

Accommodation in Jordan runs the gamut from the cheapest fleapit dives all the way up to international-standard luxury five-star hotels. Amman, Petra and Aqaba have a wide choice covering all price brackets and Jordan’s Dead Sea hotels are some of the best spa resort complexes in the world.

 

 

  • Hyatt Regency Aqaba Ayla Resort

Located in Aqaba, 2.6 km from Al-Ghandour Beach, Hyatt Regency Aqaba Ayla Resort provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. Among the various facilities of this property are a bar, a garden and a private beach area. The accommodation offers a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. Guest rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a desk. Featuring a private bathroom with a shower and free toiletries, rooms at the resort also offer free WiFi. At Hyatt Regency Aqaba Ayla Resort each room includes a seating area. American and halal breakfast options are available daily at the accommodation. Hyatt Regency Aqaba Ayla Resort offers 5-star accommodation with a hammam and children's playground. You can play table tennis and darts at the resort, and the area is popular for cycling. Royal Yacht Club is 3.3 km from Hyatt Regency Aqaba Ayla Resort, while Tala Bay Aqaba is 19 km away. The nearest airport is King Hussein International, 9 km from the accommodation, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Hilton Dead Sea Resort & Spa

All guest rooms feature individually controlled air-conditioning units, WiFi, satellite TV with international channels, safe, mini bar and mineral water. Some rooms include a large terrace overlooking the Dead Sea. Redefining the culinary arts experience, Hilton Dead Sea Resort & Spa boasts seven extraordinary dining venues. Spectrum; the all-day dining restaurant, 1312; features a contemporary menu of Lebanese cuisine created by famed Chef Joe Barza, Bacchus; the pool-side Italian restaurant, VUE; the lobby lounge, Infinity; the pool bar, Beach Bar; that serves refreshments to guests enjoying their time on the beach and Sky Bar & Lounge; the seasonal roof-top lounge that serves innovative cocktails and snacks and comes alive after sunset with the beats of the resident DJ. You will find a 24-hour front desk and a gift shop at the property. A car rental desk is available in the the lobby. Queen Alia Airport is 65 km from the property, while the capital Amman is 45 km away. Private parking is available on site.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Amman Rotana

Located in the central business, social and residential destination, Amman’s new downtown, Al Abdali, Amman Rotana is the first tower hotel in Jordan offering 412 lavish rooms and suites, housed across 50 floors at 188 m high. The hotel has a spa centre and sauna and guests can enjoy a drink at the bar. Rooms have a flat-screen TV. Certain units have a seating area where you can relax. You will find a coffee machine in the room. Every room has a private bathroom with a bath and bidet, with bath robes provided. For your comfort, you will find slippers and a hair dryer. This 5-star hotel is designed in a vibrant modern style providing a combination of deluxe accommodation, diverse culinary experiences, state-of-the-art meeting and event facilities including the Monarch Ballroom. The hotel also houses the newly opened Bodylines Fitness & Wellness Club. Al Khaldi Hospital is 1.6 km away. The hotel is within a 45-minute drive from Queen Alia International Airport. Free private parking is available on site.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Wadi Rum Bubble Luxotel

With mountain views, Wadi Rum Bubble Luxotel is located in Wadi Rum and has a restaurant and a 24-hour front desk. Complimentary WiFi is provided. There is a private bathroom with bidet in all units, along with a hairdryer and free toiletries. The tented camp offers a buffet or à la carte breakfast. A barbecue can be found at Wadi Rum Bubble Luxotel, along with a terrace. The nearest airport is King Hussein International Airport, 61 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Mövenpick Resort & Residences Aqaba

This 5-star resort in the centre of Aqaba is 500 m from the Red Sea. It features a private beach, several outdoor pools and 5 food outlets. It features free WiFi in all areas. The rooms at the Mövenpick Resort & Residences Aqaba are bright and furnished with modern décor. They include satellite TV and a tea/coffee maker. Some rooms have a kitchenette and a balcony. Guests can enjoy rich local cuisine at the Palm Court Restaurant & Terrace. The various bars at the Resort Aqaba serve refreshing juices and exotic cocktails. Little Birds Kids Club arranges fun activities for children throughout the day. More active guests can work out at the gym, which features state-of-the-art equipment. The Residences Aqaba’s 24-hour front desk can arrange trips to Wadi Rum, Petra and the Dead Sea.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Aqaba

Hilton Aqaba features an edgeless pool with Gulf of Aqaba views. It boasts a sauna and a well-equipped fitness centre. King Hussein International Airport is 10.6 km away. All rooms have deluxe bedding which includes 250-thread count sheets and down pillows. Each one has a well-lit work desk, 50-inch LED TV and a private balcony. Discover several dining outlets offering a range of culinary options. Start your day with our breakfast buffet at Gusto. Visit Tree Cafe for some coffee, tea, snacks and mouthwatering pastries . Lounge by the pool and enjoy views of the Red Sea at Infinity bar, while sipping cocktails or eating a snack. Chill out with friends at Diwan The View, the trendiest rooftop lounge in town and enjoy a variety of international dishes, drinks and listen to live music or cheer for your team and enjoy your time with friends at King's Sports Bar. DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Aqaba is less than 5 minutes’ drive from Aqaba city centre’s restaurants and shops. Aqaba Port is 7 km away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea

Boasting tree-lined outdoor pools overlooking the waters of the Dead Sea, the 5-star Kempinski features a private stretch of beach and a spa offering sea mud and sea salt treatments. Home-made pasta, Thai dishes and signature chocolate desserts and watermelon granites are served at Kempinski Ishtar’s restaurants. Try a drink at the Babylonian-inspired cocktail bar, or enjoy a whisky and cigar at the lounge bar. Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea offers rooms set among palm trees and olive groves. All rooms and suites come with a balcony with sea views. They are carved in natural stone complemented by contemporary details. Guests can refresh in the 9 freshwater pools, or relax in the spa with traditional Thai massages or hammam sessions. The state-of-the-art fitness centre has personal trainers available on request, and yoga and meditation classes are on offer. The closest airport is Queen Alia, about 70 km away, and private parking is available on site.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Al Sultana Luxury Camp

Located in Wadi Rum in the Aqaba Governorate region, Al Sultana Luxury Camp provides accommodation with free WiFi and free private parking. A continental breakfast is available daily at the lodge. A terrace is available on site and cycling can be enjoyed within close proximity of Al Sultana Luxury Camp. The nearest airport is King Hussein International, 71 km from the accommodation, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Memories Aicha Luxury Camp

With mountain views, Memories Aicha Luxury Camp is situated in Wadi Rum and has a restaurant and a 24-hour front desk. There is a fully equipped private bathroom with shower and free toiletries. The tented camp offers a continental or buffet breakfast. Memories Aicha Luxury Camp has a barbecue, garden and sun terrace. The nearest airport is King Hussein International, 71 km from the accommodation, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Al Manara, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Saraya Aqaba

Located on the beachfront in Aqaba, Al Manara, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Saraya Aqaba features a private beach area and free WiFi. Boasting a 24-hour front desk, this property also provides guests with an outdoor pool. The property has a garden, as well as a restaurant that serves seafood cuisine. All guest rooms comes with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a coffee machine, a bath, free toiletries and a desk. The rooms come with a private bathroom and a bidet, and selected rooms will provide you with a terrace. Guest rooms will provide guests with a wardrobe and a kettle. The hotel offers a continental or buffet breakfast. The property has a sauna. Guests can make sightseeing and ticketing arrangements at the tour desk, or conduct business at the business centre. Royal Yacht Club is 1.9 km from Al Manara, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Saraya Aqaba. The nearest airport is King Hussein International Airport, 8 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Crowne Plaza Jordan Dead Sea Resort & Spa

Featuring a promenade along the Dead Sea, Crowne Plaza Jordan Dead Sea Resort & Spa boasts an outdoor pool, a gym and a restaurant. Baptism Site is 20 minutes’ drive away. The hotel offers modern rooms with a flat-screen TV, a minibar and a private bathroom. Each room includes a balcony overlooking the gardens or the Dead Sea. You can dine at any of Crowne Plaza Jordan’s restaurants where à la carte menus are provided. A buffet is served for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Room service is also available. The bar serves an assortment of beverages. You can take a dip in the outdoor swimming pool or work out at the gym. For an additional fee, you can enjoy a massage at the spa and wellness centre. Mount Nebo is a 25-minutes drive from Crowne Plaza Jordan, and Hammamat Maeen is 20 minutes away by car. Queen Alia International Airport is 45 minutes’ drive away. Free valet parking is possible.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN JORDAN

Jordan is a traveler's dream introduction to the Middle East. Safe and friendly, the destination gets travelers up close to world wonders and immerses them in world-class hospitality. You'll feel right at home once you slip into the culture of this easygoing country.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites abound in Jordan. Marvel at fading frescos in the 1,300-year-old desert castle of Quseir Amra. Climb red sand dunes and stand in the shadows of weathered sandstone in Wadi Rum's humbling desert landscape. And plan to spend at least two days exploring Jordan's crown jewel attraction: Petra. The jaw-dropping sites in the ancient Nabatean city will leave you stunned — and eager to see more.

But Jordan's not solely rooted in the past. Its hilly capital, Amman, brims with bustling restaurants and cafés, swanky shopping, and impressive art galleries. Then, there's the Dead Sea — where you can kick up your feet after days of sightseeing and dig in to some much-needed pampering at the many luxe waterfront resorts. Plan your vacation to the Middle East and see the best places to visit with our list of the top tourist attractions & things to do in Jordan.

 

  • Petra

Prepare to be amazed by Petra. One of the New7Wonders of the World, this attraction has wowed modern-day visitors since the long-lost city's rediscovery by Swiss explorer Jean Louis Burckhardt more than 200 years ago. You'll need at least two days to hit all the highlights around Petra, which include more than 800 registered sites. But if you have more time, you won't be disappointed spending it here. Wandering around a city this ancient in such a well-preserved state is an experience like none other. Petra wastes no time impressing tourists. Immediately after the entrance, you'll see mysterious Djinn Blocks, imposing stone monuments whose original purpose still remains unknown, followed by the Obelisk Tomb. It's just a sample of the incredible sites to come.

From here, you'll make your way through the Siq — the famous snaking canyon pathway flanked by tall walls. Look along the walls to see the remnants of historic channels that were used to supply Petra with water, as well as niches for sacred carvings known as baetyls. These artifacts hint that Petra may have been considered a holy city at one point in time. Keep your eye out for the weathered relief sculpture of camels being lead by two merchants, as well. Finally, you'll reach the unmistakable Treasury (also known as Al-Khazneh). Showcased in nearly every travel guide book and social media post about Petra, this attraction's Hellenistic facade is one of the most enchanting places to visit in Jordan. Legend has it that the rock-hewn monument, which was built as the final resting place for Nabatean King Aretas IV, was the hiding place for an Egyptian pharaoh's treasure at the time of Moses.

When it comes to things to do in Petra after the Siq and the Treasury, it's a choose-your-own adventure. Check out dozens of tombs and houses on the Street of Facades, climb steep stairs for a great view at the High Place of Sacrifice, stand in awe at the Theater and stroll down the impressive Colonnaded Street. If your feet aren't too sore yet, make your way up the roughly 850 rock-cut steps to the legendary Monastery. The impressive structure, tucked in the hills, is well worth the journey. If you thought Petra was incredible during the day, wait until you see it after dark. Reserve tickets to the Petra Night Show to see the Siq and the Treasury lit by more than 1,500 flickering candles.

Petra: Jordan's Petra: A keeper of secrets? - The Economic Times

 

 

 

  • Dead Sea

Floating in the Dead Sea is a quintessential thing to do in Jordan. The lowest point on Earth accessible by road, this body of water is located at 418 meters below sea level. It practically glows an intense shade of aquamarine — a particularly striking sight next to salt-encrusted rock ledges and barren red mountains in the background. You can reach the attractions in the Dead Sea region in about an hour by car from Amman. The Dead Sea is renowned for its mineral-rich water. Wellness devotees believe the water has healing properties for the skin. Don't plan to swim laps, though — the Dead Sea is so dense and salient that all you can really do is float atop the surface.

You can access the Dead Sea from a couple of entry points, including Amman Beach. Better yet, splurge on a stay at one of the plush spa resorts on the Dead Sea's northeast coast. They typically have private wading areas complete with buckets of Dead Sea mud. One bath with this red-brown sludge, and your skin will be softer than ever. 

Hot tip: Avoid getting Dead Sea water in your eyes at all costs. The intense salinity (10 times saltier than the ocean!) stings worse than you can imagine. 

Dead Sea disappearing : Slow disappearance of Dead Sea raises alarm | Times  of India Travel

 

 

 

  • Wadi Rum

Head to the southern region of Jordan, and you'll be treated to one of the most spectacular landscapes across the globe: Wadi Rum. Also known as the Valley of the Moon, this sandstone and granite rock valley is an otherworldly experience, with towering cliffs, massive dunes, swirling archways, and caverns. It served as the set for much of the 1962 film Lawrence of Arabia and was tagged a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011. Adventure lovers, eat your heart out: The Zalabia Bedouin, a cultural group that lives in the area, have transformed the Wadi Rum into an ecotourism playground. You can ride camels or spirited Arabian horses through the area, strap on a harness and go rock climbing up the sandstone mountains, hike through canyons, and kick up sand on ATV tours. Ask your tour guide to take you to the Khazali Canyon, where you can see petroglyphs of humans and antelopes that may date as far back as the 8th century BC. Consider spending the night at one of the luxurious "glamping" (glamorous camping) sites in Wadi Rum. With almost zero light pollution, the park offers incredible stargazing opportunities. No wonder visiting Wadi Rum is one of the top things to do in Jordan.

Classic Jordan Tour 8 Day - Eco Turkey Travel

 

 

 

  • Jerash Ruins

Nothing feels more like traveling back in time than visiting the Jerash ruins. It's one of the world's best-preserved ancient Roman cities and features spectacular places to visit, from colonnaded avenues and temples to a massive sports arena that once had a seating capacity of 15,000 spectators. Tourists kick off their sightseeing adventure of the Jerash ruins by walking through Hadrian's Arch. The roughly 11-meter-tall structure is magnificent, but even more impressive when you consider it was originally double the size.

If that wasn't enough to wow you, wait until you explore what's ahead. The Hippodrome, a sports field constructed around the 2nd century, once hosted chariot races as entertainment for thousands of onlookers. The ancient sport is brought back to life through daily re-enactments, featuring fighting gladiators and chariots racing laps. Another highlight of the Jerash ruins is the Forum. The oval-shaped plaza is lined by still-standing columns that give the space a regal feel. Climb the steps of the nearby Temple of Zeus to get an even better view of the colonnaded site. And imagine the performances that took place on the ornate stage of the South Theater. Jerash seems to have a fascinating ruin for everyone — explore to see which site is your favorite.

Hot tip: There's almost no shade in this archeological site. Bring plenty of water, sunscreen, and a sunhat to keep yourself protected from the harsh rays.

Exploring the 2000-Year-Old Roman Ruins of Jerash, Jordan. | Jerash, Jordan  travel, Jordan photos

 

 

 

  • Aqaba

Think you can't have a seaside vacation in the hot, dry Middle East? Think again. Aqaba, a beach town on the southern tip of Jordan, treats tourists to holidays on the breathtaking coastline of the Red SeaFloat, swim, snorkel, or dive — you can do it all from Aqaba. You can also get out on the turquoise water on one of the daily cruises offered by local hotels. Enhance your beach vacation in Jordan with a soak in one of the lovely hammams around the resort town. When you're feeling peckish, dig into the local specialty of Aqaba: sayadieh, a dish of fish on flavorful rice with onion, tomato, and chili pepper.

Aqaba - Wikipedia

 

 

 

  • Roman Ruins in Amman

You don't have to go all the way to Petra to see fantastic archeological sites in Jordan. In fact, the capital Amman (where you'll probably arrive from abroad) is home to a variety of fascinating ruins, many of which are within short walking distance from one another. Head downtown to see one of the most celebrated ruins: the Amman Citadel. Archeologists have found artifacts around the Citadel that suggest it has been occupied since at least the Bronze Age. Here, you can see the few columns that remain of the amazing Temple of Hercules, a significant Roman structure that was never completed. Look for the stone sculpture of several fingers, which were once part of a Hercules statue that may have been more than 12 meters tall. It hints at just how majestic this attraction was during its height. One of the top attractions in Amman for history buffs is the Roman Theater. The restored amphitheater, which seats 6,000 people, dates back to when Amman was a Roman-ruled city known as Philadelphia, nearly 2,000 years ago. The attraction is still full of life, hosting many events and welcoming locals and tourists alike. Nearby, tourists can visit the Nymphaeum, a Roman fountain that was built around the same time as the theater, as well as the smaller 500-seat theater, the Odeon. After getting your fill of the ruins, see the vibrant culture of modern-day Amman with a sightseeing trip along Rainbow Street. The popular promenade boasts atmospheric cafés, fantastic people-watching opportunities, and souvenir shops galore!

 

 

 

  • Ancient Mosaics of Madaba

While sightseeing in many destinations demands you look up, the opposite is true in the historic trading city of Madaba. The city is home to the "largest number of mosaics discovered in their original location in the world," many of which are located on the floors of churches and buildings around the city. The relatively unassuming St. George's Church is home to one of the most noteworthy mosaics in Jordan: the Madaba Mosaic Map. The 6th-century map depicts the Holy Land during the Byzantine period, showcasing Biblical-era cartography. While some of the original two million tiles are missing, the remnants of the map still give you an excellent glimpse at what the Middle East looked like many centuries ago. Visitors can see more mosaics at Madaba's two archeological parks. The open-air museum at Archaeological Park I contains a stunning geometric mosaic from the Church of the Virgin Mary — a site from the 6th century that was unearthed in someone's basement in 1887. This attraction also houses the oldest mosaic in Jordan, which dates back to the 1st century BC, as well as breathtaking carpet-like tile work of the four seasons and nature that was once in a Byzantine villa. Tourists can see other impressive mosaics at Archaeological Park II, located in the ruins of a luxurious mansion from the early 6th century.

 

 

 

  • Wadi Mujib

Stretching from the Desert Highway around 70 kilometers to the Dead Sea, Wadi Mujib is Jordan's answer to America's Grand Canyon. The river canyon, which is four kilometers wide and one kilometer deep, offers nature lovers the chance to explore unique scenery and see a plethora of wildlife, including Egyptian vultures, Nubian ibex, striped hyena, and the Syrian wolf. There's great hiking through the Wadi Mujib gorge, if you don't mind getting a little wet. You can also head to the Mujib Reserve Biosphere to soak in picturesque hot springs just an hour and a half away from Amman.

Mujib Biosphere Reserve | Wild Jordan

 

 

 

  • Explore the Amman Citadel

You don't have to go far to see amazing archeological ruins in Jordan's capital. Perched atop the highest hill in the city, the Amman Citadel is conveniently located downtown and offers incredible views of the destination. But more than just a lookout point, the Citadel is home to historical attractions that date as far back as the Bronze Age. Take a look at the two massive pillars on a podium — those landmarks are what remain of the Temple of Hercules, an important Roman structure that once linked this area with the Forum. Nearby, you can see a large, smooth stone sculpture of three bent fingers. The humanizing fragment was once part of a colossal statue of Hercules, which experts believe may have stood more than 12 meters tall. It gives tourists a sense of how majestic the Citadel was during its heyday. The Citadel is also home to another impressive collection of buildings that comprise the Umayyad Palace, situated just above the Temple of HerculesWhile much of the complex was destroyed in an earthquake in the mid-8th century, a few sites have been restored for tourists. You can see a domed audience hall, whose shape nods to the Byzantine church that originally stood in that location, as well as the former governor's residence, Umayyad Cistern, and the Byzantine Basilica. Take a peek inside the Jordan Archaeological Museum to learn more about these fascinating attractions and get up close to artifacts discovered around the Citadel, including some of the oldest-known large-scale human figures.

 

 

 

  • Visit the Roman Theater

When it comes to things to do in Amman, swinging by the Roman Theater is high on the list — and for good reason. The antique attraction perfectly blends historic Jordanian heritage with the city's vibrant modern-day life. A 20-minute walk from the Amman Citadel, the restored Roman Theater deepens tourists' understanding of what Amman may have been like when the city went by the name "Philadelphia," nearly 2,000 years ago. The architectural masterpiece features a set of steep, curving stairs that can seat up to 6,000 people. Interestingly, the amphitheater was built to face the north in order to offer some sun protection for its spectators. Get here early in the day for the best lighting for photos. Today, the Roman Theater hosts some of Amman's most important cultural events, including summer concerts and plays. It's also home to two interesting museums: the Jordan Museum of Popular Traditions and the Jordan Folklore Museum, both of which have great costume collections on display.

View On Roman Theater In Amman - Jordan Stock Photo, Picture And Royalty  Free Image. Image 62236268.

 

 

 

  • Spend an Afternoon on Rainbow Street

Rainbow Street is the place to see and be seen in Amman. The famous road, which can be found in the historic district of Jabal Amman, offers a relaxing space for pedestrians to escape Amman's chaotic traffic and explore a part of the capital by foot. Rainbow Street is liveliest on Thursday nights, when Jordanians officially kick off their weekend, but there are still plenty of things to do on this tourist-friendly promenade on any afternoon of the week. Boost your energy with a cup of tea at one of the lovely cafés that line Rainbow Street, such as Turtle Green Tea Bar or Jara Cafe. Or, tuck into a delicious (and refreshingly cheap) lunch — Al Quds fries up perfectly crisp falafel on sesame seed buns. Save some room for frozen fruit popsicles at Mr. Lollies. Thenhit up Rainbow Street's retailers and find some souvenirs to take home. You can watch artisans create handicrafts and shop for unique products at Souk Jara, a flea market that pops up on one of Rainbow's side streets some Friday nights. Just a couple of blocks off Rainbow Street, the Wild Jordan Center sells locally made jewelry, trinkets, soaps, mugs, and other souvenirs. The ethically minded store uses profits to support craftspeople and conservation efforts around Jordan. Round out your sightseeing adventure on Rainbow Street with a visit to one of the nearby local art galleries, such as Nabad Art Gallery or Jacaranda.

Amman Jordan — Travel Guide to the Capital of Jordan

 

 

 

  • Check Out the Royal Automobile Museum

Whether you're a die-hard car enthusiast or you have a passion for road trips, you'll find it easy to enjoy the Royal Automobile Museum in the northern suburbs of Amman. Established in 2003, the relatively young museum showcases former King of Jordan Hussein bin Talal's rare cavalcade of cars and other vehicles from around the world. Highlights of the collection include a pristine 1952 Aston Martin, a bunch of vintage motorbikes in every color of the rainbow, a Porsche Carrera GT, Bugatti Veyron, a World War I-era armored Rolls Royce, and an experimental motorcycle from 1885. Outside, the museum also displays the Mars rover from the 2015 film The Martian, which was filmed in Wadi Rum.

Royal Automobile Museum (Amman) - 2020 All You Need to Know Before You Go  (with Photos) - Amman, Jordan | Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Learn about History at the Jordan Museum

No trip to Amman is complete without a thorough look at the Jordan Museum's illuminating exhibitions. The collection at this world-class institution, located in a modern building next to City Hall, brings Jordanian culture and history to life, starting with the country's earliest known inhabitants. The museum tells the story of Jordan through three permanent galleries. The Traditional Life Gallery explores urban, rural, and Bedouin lifestyles through displays of residences and traditional costumes. The Modern Jordan Wing traces the history of the country from the Great Arab Renaissance through the founding of the kingdom all the way to the present-day nation. The Jordan Museum's largest display — the Archaeological and Historical Gallery — showcases an incredible array of important artifacts and scale models of ancient sites, like the Ayla Gate. Some of the most impressive items on display include 1.5-million-year-old animal bones and the Copper Scroll from the Dead Sea Scrolls. Nowhere else in Amman gives tourists such an accessible, detailed glimpse at the heritage of Jordan.

The Jordan Museum. Art Destination Jordan, Amman

 

 

 

  • Get Wowed by Qasr al-Abd

About 20 kilometers west of Amman stands one of the few examples of Hellenistic architecture in the country, Qasr al-Abd. The desert palace, which was built from some of the largest blocks in the Middle East, features two stories that survived a massive earthquake in the year 362. While the landmark is no longer as opulent as it once was, you can still see carved lions on the roof and the sculpted big cats that once served as fountains.

Iraq Al Amir - Review of Qasr al-Abd, Amman, Jordan - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Take Day Trips around Jordan

One of the best parts of visiting Amman is not only seeing what the city itself has to offer, but venturing outside of the borders of the capital. It makes a great base for taking day trips to some of the other wondrous places to visit in Jordan. You can reach the Dead Sea attractions in around 90 minutes by car from Amman. Get a dose of nature therapy at the nearby Mujib Biosphere Reserve. Explore the well-preserved Roman ruins in Jerash, about 50 kilometers north of Amman. See the famous cross at Mount Nebo and the ancient mosaics in Madaba. And while just one afternoon in Petra might not be enough to see everything, a visit to that famous attraction is indeed doable as a day trip from Amman for time-pressed, yet ambitious tourists.

 

 

 

  • Canyoning through a deep gorge

At 410m below sea level, next to the Dead sea, within the deep Wadi Mujib gorge lies one of the lowest nature reserves in the world. The Mujib Nature reserve then rises 900m above sea level, to mountains in the north and south. The 1300m elevation drop creates an excellent terrain for some dramatic canyoning. You’d be walking down arid mountains, climbing waterfalls, sliding on rocks, floating on streams and rappelling. A shower under one of its gushing waterfalls is sure to wake you up better than any espresso shot!

Wadi Al-Mujib | Jordan Day Tour And More | Adventure trip

 

 

 

  • Hiking through a maze of archaeological structures

The hike through this UNESCO World Heritage site is compelling enough to be listed as one of the top adventure activities in Jordan. The ancient city of Petra offers some brilliant canyons and rock faces. It lies in south Jordan, within a basin of mountains that form a valley between the Dead Sea and the Gulf of Aqaba. With its towering, age-old rock-cut structures that seem to erupt out of nowhere it is a riveting place to explore for the geographer, historian and culture-vulture in you.

6 places in Jordan you cannot miss! | Hopping Feet

 

 

 

  • Rock Climbing in Wadi Rum

This valley down south is a climber’s paradise, making it one of our favourite places for adventure activities in Jordan. Ascents on the sandstone rocks reach upto 1800m above sea level. Top-ropers, trad-climbers, boulderers will find the vertical terrain a great space to practice and refine their technique.

Wadi Rum: Spectacular Scenic Desert Valley of Lawrence of Arabia (41 Pics)  | Jordan, Lugares, The globe

 

 

 

  • Snorkel, Dive and Dance with the fish

Aqaba, at the northeastern tip of the Red Sea, is the only coastal city in Jordan. Home to some beautiful, indigenous varieties of coral reefs, it has about 30 diving sites. Snorkeling and scuba-diving are two of the most popular aquatic adventure activities of the area. You dive in magnificent clear waters and play with creatures of the sea.

Jordan's most exciting adventures | Adventure, Sea and ocean, Travel dreams

 

 

 

  • Camel Racing and Horse Riding

There are spaces that can be traveled through only on foot and hooves. Some areas of the arid plateau regions of Wadi Rum offer such limitations, making way for some heady adventure activities in Jordan. For those with strong feet, trek. And those fond of hooves, ride on horses and camels for a thrilling ride around the desert. While there, place your bets on some crazy camel races too!

Is camel riding ethical? How to have a cruelty-free camel riding experience

 

 

 

  • Night Walks in vast wilderness

Now this might sound like a no-biggie, but if you have never wandered about in a trail-less, pitch black expanse of wilderness, then you have been warned! The summer months in Wadi Rum in southern Jordan offer plenty of organized night-walks, for the seasoned footer.

Night Hiking: Best Night Adventure and How to Prepare Yourself

 

 

 

  • Trekking through spectacular trails

An avid trekker seeks two things to make life a happy dance – diverse terrain and a pretty landscape. Jordan’s riveting topography offers both – the arid plateau of Wadi Rum, ancient rock structures of Petra, wild waterfalls of Wadi Mujib, and evergreen forests on the west side. Trekking is one of the best ways to explore this country’s unexplored and wild treasures.

Dana to Petra 8 day trek in Jordan | On The Go Tours

 

 

 

  • Skydiving over sandstones

This paradise for climbers and camel-racers is also becoming a great platform for those seeking a thrill in the skies above its diverse terrain. Skydiving is rapidly ranking high as one of the top ten adventure activities in Jordan. The experienced with a USPA or equivalent FAI approved license are allowed to skydive. Tandem jump is offered to first-timers. Because of high wind, skydiving is in operation for some months, mostly between September and November.

Jordan's most exciting adventures | Times of India Travel

 

 

 

  • Microlight Flights

If you are an organized sort and plan well, you might get lucky and take microlight flights, an increasingly popular way to get a bird’s eye view of the country’s landscape. Microlights are small, lightweight aircrafts that fly at 80 to 90km/hr at altitudes of 1000 to 1200m. Microlight flights in Jordan are offered by The Royal Aero Sports Club of Jordan.

The Royal Aero Sports Club of Jordan | Microlight

 

 

 

  • ATV/Offroading

Despite being called the unofficial adventure capital of the middle-east, Jordan is still largely an unexplored territory. There are trails waiting to be discovered, and an exciting way of doing that is renting an ATV and zipping off. With a GoPro on your head and an oft-changing, unknown trail ahead, you are sure to document a hell of a ride.

Offroaders (Dead Sea Region) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go  (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN JORDAN

Jordan's capital is no stranger to fine dining, with a plethora of restaurants from which to savor cultural delicacies. From traditional Jordanian fare to gourmet steak houses, this city of four million caters to every culinary desire imaginable. Here are the list of Turisti-Info to the best restaurants in Amman Jordan.

 

 

  • Fakhr el-Din

The multi-award winning Lebanese restaurant Fakhr el-Din is a popular spot for members of Amman’s high society, offering excellent quality food and service. Occupying a renovated traditional style house in the city’s 1st Circle, you will experience a tangible sense of living in the past as you dine in style. Famed for its wide range of authentic mezze, connoisseurs of Lebanese cuisine won’t leave disappointed. Arak and/or shisha make for the perfect post-dinner treat.

Fakhreldin Restaurant – Levant cuisine in the elegance of an authentic  Jordanian home

 

 

 

  • Brisket

Brisket barbecue restaurant is home to internationally acclaimed meat dishes, and arguably boasts the most succulent, tender burgers in the entire Middle East. Every type of meat cut imaginable is served up and cooked to perfection here, from steaks to wings to brisket itself; the smoked beef ribs are especially tantalizing. Truly mouth-watering and unforgettable, meat lovers will rejoice at the variety of choice.

The 10 Best Restaurants in Amman, Jordan

 

 

 

  • Hashem

One of Amman’s oldest and best-loved restaurants, Hashem is a simple bistro revered for its wholesome, good quality grub. A set menu of traditional Jordanian fare is what’s on offer, which features – by common consensus – some of the best falafel in the country. Located in the capital’s bustling downtown area, the basic furnishings complement a richness of experience and flavour that’s second to none. Few places in the city are so effortlessly authentic as Hashem.

Hashem Restaurant | Amman, Jordan Restaurants - Lonely Planet

 

 

 

  • Sufra

Located in Rainbow Street, Sufra offers its clientele traditional Jordanian fare in the most exquisite of settings. Beautifully furnished, the restaurant is light and airy, with options to sit outside or on the rooftop, which boasts some exceptional views of the city. Helpful staff and delicious freshly cooked bread are but two small examples of the many ways in which Sufra goes the extra mile to provide the perfect setting for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Sufra Restaurant Traditional Middle Eastern Cuisine in Amman Jordan The  aroma of traditional Jordanian cuisine fill… | Eastern cuisine, Amman jordan,  Middle eastern

 

 

 

  • Reems

The best place in town for shawarma, Reems is celebrated city-wide for its delectable take-away offerings. This roadside store is cramped and often has queues going out the door – a testament to the lengths that regulars will go to to sate their cravings. Located in the 2nd Circle, Reems is open until late and is a must try for anyone before leaving Amman.

Making Reem Beef and Lamb Shawarma at Home - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Kan Zaman

The beautifully historic setting of Kan Zaman is enough to merit your visit. Located in an old Ammani residence, the stunning brick archways and vaulted ceilings create an ambiance like no other. Recently renovated, the service is professional and attentive, and the menu offers a good range of Lebanese-style cuisine. The mezze is varied and filling, and the selection of traditional desserts will prove irresistible to those with a sweet tooth. Outdoor seating is also available, and tasteful traditional music often plays in the background.

Private Kan Zaman Lunch or Dinner from Dead Sea 2020

 

 

 

  • Bab al-Yeman

Bab al-Yeman is the number one spot for sampling Yemani food in the city. With its generous portions, your plate will be laden with mixed meats doused in Yemeni spices, accompanied by a mouth-watering selection of yoghurts, breads, and dips. You won’t find a better mandi (a spicy meat and rice dish) in all of Jordan. They also do delivery.

Red, Orange, and Yellow Rice at Bab al-Yemen | Picturing Jordan

 

 

 

 

  • Rakwet Arab

Located in the cosy Jabal al- Weibdeh district, Rakwet Arab is a relaxing venue for food, drinks, and for smoking shisha. Tastefully decorated, the soft lighting and traditional tile-work make for an agreeable atmosphere in which to while away an afternoon with a cup of tea in the company of a good book. The chefs serve up tasty, local fare, best consumed in the cafe-restaurant’s leafy, shaded courtyard. Reasonably priced and rightfully popular, Rakwet Arab is an oasis of calm that offers a moment of respite from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Rakwet Arab Cafe photos by Sondos | Jeeran Doha

 

 

 

  • Ararat

If you’re looking to broaden your familiarity with the diversity of Middle Eastern cuisine, head over to Ararat, Amman’s leading Armenian restaurant. Uncluttered and well-presented, the restaurant’s aesthetic won’t disappoint, and neither will the food. The famous “Armenian pizza” or lahmajoun (a dough base topped with minced meat and vegetables) is an absolute must-try for its authentic, homemade flavors. Everything is fresh, and it’s centrally located on Rainbow Street.

Mount Ararat - Picture of Levant Restaurant, Amman - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

 

  • Falafel Al Quds

The best value meal you’ll find in all of Amman, Falafel Al Quds will serve you up an unquestionably delicious falafel sandwich for the bargain price of half a dinar. An Ammani institution, located in the heart of Rainbow Street, this quick eatery is understandably popular among falafel lovers. No frills and no nonsense, many customers swear it’s the best meal they’ve ever had. The usual array of soft drinks are available to complement your meal.

Eat Like a Local in Amman, Jordan | The Lost Girls

 

 

 

 

 

SOUVENIRS TO BUY IN JORDAN

From traditional clothing to Arabic sweets and chocolate, Culture Trip selects the best traditional Jordanian souvenirs to buy when you’re visiting the kingdom. During your trip to Jordan, as you hike in Petra, camp in Wadi Rum, float in the Dead Sea, wander around Amman, and dive in Aqaba, you’ll have the chance to pick up a few mementos and gifts along the way. The following authentic and (mostly) affordable buys will fit in your suitcase and capture the captivating Jordanian culture.

 

 

  • Traditional keffiyehs (scarves)

Embroidered items and Bedouin weaves are popular Jordanian souvenirs, but perhaps the most practical and iconic textile choice is a traditional headscarf, called keffiyeh in Arabic. The classic Jordanian keffiyeh is a houndstooth checkered pattern: red and white is worn by Bedouins, black and white by Palestinians. Buy one of each. They’re sold at the most-visited spots in Jordan, and usually come with a lesson on how to wrap your head like a proper desert dweller. If you’re looking for something a little more stylish, SEP Jordan makes scarves and wraps in traditional styles and a rainbow of colours. The ethical pieces are hand-stitched by women refugees supported by the company.

Top 15 Jordan Souvenirs To Pick... - Shopping In Jordan

 

 

 

  • Hand-painted ceramics

Mosaics are a distinctly Jordanian art form (don’t miss the region’s oldest mosaics in Madaba) but the real deal can be quite expensive. Mosaic-style ceramics are a more reasonably priced alternative. Before you hop on your flight to Jordan, you can pre-order a mosaic-style mug customised with your name in Arabic or English via All from Jordan, and pick it up in Amman. Or while adventuring, you’ll certainly come across all kinds of traditional pottery, mosaic-style and otherwise. For hand-painted ceramics in a more contemporary style, check out Sharqi, which offers ceramics made by refugee women, starting at USD $29.

The Best Places to Buy Souvenirs in Amman

 

 

 

  • Locally made chocolate

More and more companies are making hand-crafted chocolates in Jordan, but two particularly reflect the local culture. At Jameed Chocolate, Chef Omar Sartawi’s not-so-secret ingredient is local goat milk, specifically jameed, a yogurt dried into a hard cheese, which is also used in Jordan’s national dish, mansaf. At Ishq Artisan Chocolates, Zahira Haram crafts exquisite chocolates with modern flavour profiles influenced by the current season and local ingredients – she also skips the refined sugar and uses other more natural sources of sweetness.

 

The Best Souvenirs to Buy in Jordan

 

 

 

  • Hipster T-shirts and accessories

Jobedu and Mlabbas take existing sayings, logos and images and create well-designed witty take-offs in Arabic. If you don’t speak the language, the staff will patiently interpret the Arabic and explain every pun and every play on words. The design aesthetic and sense of humour of both brands is spot on. You can grab all kinds of accessories, like keychains, coasters and totes, as well as T-shirts and sweatshirts emblazoned with inside jokes (such as the universally understood camel crossing sign).

Petra, Jordan - All About Cruise

 

 

 

  • Ajloun olive oil

The Ajloun area in northwestern Jordan is known for its olives.You can pick up bottles of Ajloun olive oil at any supermarket, but the cloudy, fresh-pressed good stuff comes from freshly picked olives. The annual olive harvest happens in the fall after the first substantial rain. if you’re in Jordan between October and December, plan a trip to Ajloun to visit an olive farm and watch the pressing of oil – and, of course, pick up some bottles to enjoy at home.

18th Olive Festival takes place in Amman | Roya News

 

 

 

  • Local artwork

Amman is a sanctuary for regional artists and, not surprisingly, the epicentre of the emerging art scene is Jabal Weibdeh. Stop by the higher end art galleries, but do note that the real deals can be found by wandering the streets of Jabal Weibdeh, paying special attention to cafes and artist studios (like the artist-owned Sham Cafe on Nemr Al Edwan Street). Another gallery for affordable local art, Jacaranda Images, can be found off Rainbow Street.

An insider's guide to Amman's hidden gems – IHG Travel Blog

 

 

 

  • Arabic sweets

The classic gift from Jordan is a tin of Zalatimo Sweets. Visit one of their 11 shops around Amman and choose your own the contents, or pick up a ready-made selection at the Queen Alia International Airport on your way out of town. If you’re overwhelmed by the choices, you can’t go wrong with the mini baklava or the adorable little pistachio nests called osh al bulbul. Their packable tins are perfect for sharing at a family gathering or as a gift for your office mates.

Zalatimo_Osh_Al_Bulbul_Jordan_Souvenirs

 

 

 

  • Jewellery

For those willing to splurge on a piece of heirloom jewellery that captures the spirit of Jordan, Nadia Dajani, whose jewellery shop is on the ground floor of the Intercontinental Amman, is known for her minimalist style featuring Arabic calligraphy and other regionally inspired designs. If that’s a bit much, keep your eyes peeled for Bedouin -style tribal costume jewellery. The quality varies so don’t spend a lot, but snag a piece or two if something catches your eye and the price is right.

Dubai gold price drops; 18K now at Dh119.25 – The Filipino Times

 

 

 

  • Spices

Sumac and za’atar may not be exclusive to Jordan, but they’re a great way to bring the unique flavours of Jordan to just about any dish. Sumac is a lemony and salty spice the colour of red wine, and za’atar comes in various blends, but the base is typically thyme and sesame seeds. And, of course, grabbing some finishing salt from the Dead Sea is always a good idea for the cooks in your life. You can purchase all these at most mini marts and supermarkets, but Kabatilo spice shops scattered around Amman are known for their quality.

Kabatilo - Spice Shop in Amman

 

 

 

  • Olive-oil soap

Because of the high quality of olive oil available in Jordan, it follows that there are some great olive-oil soaps in the market at very good prices. You can find local hand-crafted soaps at Cozmo supermarkets, like Dr. Mak, which comes in both bar and liquid form. Better yet, if you want to do a little good, Sitti and Zarqa Life are two values-driven organisations offering soap hand-crafted by local women, many of whom live in refugee camps and communities.

The Best Souvenirs to Buy in Jordan

 

 

 

  • Dead Sea mud

Brand-name Dead Sea mud is widely available in tourist shops, but it’s not exactly bargain priced. The best alternative: if your trip includes a stay at a Dead Sea hotel, have the spa package their mud for you to take home. The best spas put the clay mud through a sterilisation process, but in a way that preserves the healthy minerals. The other alternative is to scan local stores for reasonably priced small packets of the therapeutic mud, which are great for gifting.

Eczema Treatment with Dead Sea Mud and Minerals | Deadseaproducts.shop |  Best Cosmetics Online Shopping | Health & Beauty Dead Sea Minerals™

 

 

 

TORSTAI, 15. LOKAKUUTA 2020
ECUADOR SOUTH AMERICA

Ecuador and Galapagos Holidays & Luxury Holidays 2020/21 | Pure Destinations

Postcard-pretty colonial centers, waves splashing white-sand beaches, Kichwa villages, Amazonian rainforest and the breathtaking Andes – a dazzling array of wonders is squeezed into this compact country.

Cultural Splendor

The historic centers of Quito and Cuenca are lined with photogenic plazas, 17th-century churches and monasteries, and beautifully restored mansions. Wandering the cobblestone streets amid architectural treasures from Spanish colonial days is a fine way to delve into the past. Beyond the cities, the Ecuadorian landscape unfolds in all its startling variety. There are Andean villages renowned for their colorful textiles and sprawling markets, Afro-Ecuadorian towns where days end with meals of fresh seafood and memorable sunsets, and remote settlements in the Amazon where shamans still harvest the traditional rainforest medicines of their ancestors.

Andean Adventure

Setting off on a hike in the Andes can seem like stepping into a fairy tale: a patchwork of small villages, gurgling brooks and rolling fields and maybe a condor slowly wheeling overhead. Although the view from the top is sublime, you don’t have to scale a mountain to enjoy the Andes. These verdant landscapes make a fine backdrop for mountain biking, horseback riding or hiking from village to village, sleeping at local guesthouses along the way. Ecuador’s other landscapes offer equally alluring adventures, from surfing tight breaks off the Pacific coast to white-water rafting rivers along the jungle-clad banks of the Oriente.

Wildlife-Watching

The famous Galápagos Islands, with their volcanic, otherworldly landscapes, are a magnet for wildlife lovers. Here, you can get up close and personal with massive lumbering tortoises, scurrying marine iguanas (the world’s only seagoing lizard), doe-eyed sea lions, prancing blue-footed boobies and a host of other unusual species both on land and sea. The Amazon rainforest offers a vastly different wildlife-watching experience. Set out on the rivers and forested trails in search of monkeys, sloths, toucans and river dolphins. Some lodges also have canopy towers offering magnificent views (and a better chance to see birdlife). Mindo's cloud forest is considered a birder's paradise, and the country has counted more than 1600 avian species.

Sublime Scenery

After days of Ecuadorian adventures, there are many appealing places where you can go to relax amid awe-inspiring scenery. Head to the highlands to recharge at a historic hacienda, or find Zen-like beauty at a cloud-forest lodge near Mindo. There are peaceful, timeless mountain villages like Vilcabamba and picturesque former gold-mining towns such as Zaruma that offer a perfect antidote to the vertiginous rush of modern-day life. And for a coastal getaway, you'll have plenty of options, from tiny end-of-the-road settlements like Ayampe and Olón to charming towns on the Galápagos, with great beaches and magnificent sunsets.

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO TRAVEL TO ECUADOR

The best time to travel to Ecuador varies depending on which parts of the country you intend to visit. There’s no real summer and winter in Ecuador, and its weather generally varies by regional geography, with temperatures determined more by altitude than by season or latitude. The warmest and driest months in the sierra are June to September, though this is complicated by various microclimates found in some areas. Outside these months, typical sierra weather offers sunny, clear mornings and cloudy, often wet, afternoons.

In the Oriente, you can expect it to be warm, humid and rainy throughout the year, though there are often short breaks from the daily rains from August to September and December to February. In the lowlands it can get particularly hot on clear days, with temperatures easily topping 30°C. The coast has the most clearly defined wet and dry seasons, and the best time to visit is from December to April, when frequent showers alternate with clear blue skies and temperatures stay high. From May to November it’s often overcast and relatively cool, especially in the south, with less chance of rainfall.

Climate in the Galápagos Islands

The Galápagos climate sees hot, sunny days interspersed with the odd heavy shower from January to June, and dry and overcast weather for the rest of the year, when the garúa mists are prevalent. El Niño years can bring enormous fluctuations in weather patterns on the coast and at the Galápagos archipelago, when levels of rainfall can be many times the norm.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO ECUADOR

To enter Ecuador, travelers will need a passport that’s valid for at least six months after the date of arrival. Tourists are officially required to provide proof of both onward travel and sufficient funds for travel — border officials, however, do not usually request this. Travelers are also sometimes asked to provide proof of yellow fever vaccination if they’re coming from an area where the disease is endemic.

 

  • By Air

There are several airports scattered throughout Ecuador. The two international airports, located near Quito and Guayaquil, are the entry points into Ecuador. For those connecting on to the Galápagos, two smaller island airports await. In recent years Ecuador’s airports have undergone considerable renovations, and provide a high standard of convenience and service to anyone arriving to them.

Quito’s airport is the Aeropuerto Internacional Mariscal Sucre (UIO). This is one of the busiest airports in Latin America, and connects travelers to many other parts of Ecuador, including the Galápagos. This airport lies roughly 23 miles (37 km) outside the city, which translates into a 45-minute drive.

Guayaquil’s is José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport (GYE). Located conveniently near the city, this airport was recently remodeled and significantly expanded. The airport caters a variety of international flights, and sees many domestic flights as well. Travelers who are planning to immediately visit the Galápagos should fly into Guayaquil, as most flights to the islands depart from here.

To get the best deal, book in advance and compare prices with different airlines. Flights to Ecuador are most expensive during the high tourist season, which lasts from June until September, and from December through mid-January.

Some flights make stops in Panama or Costa Rica, while others are direct. Miami, New York, Atlanta, and Houston are all major hubs for flights to Ecuador. A number of European and British carriers fly to Ecuador. Flights from South American countries are plentiful, but it’s usually cheaper to cross borders by bus, as international flights are subject to high taxes.

  • By Land

It's possible to travel to Ecuador overland. The most common way to do this is by bus from Peru. The border crossing is at Tumbes/Huaquillas. At the present moment, it's not advised to drive into Ecuador from Colombia due to the presence of drug cartels and terrorist organizations near the border.

Driving to Ecuador from North America is not possible because of the presence of Panama’s Darién Gap — this is where the Pan-American Highway comes to an abrupt halt before continuing on again in Colombia. It’s technically possible to have a shipping company in Panama City transport your car around the gap by ferry, but the process is pretty complex.

 

  • By Sea

Cruises from the U.S. and Europe often make stops in the Galápagos. These cruises are usually a part of longer routes through the Americas or around the world. They also often stop in Panama, Peru, Patagonia, and Brazil.

 

Upon Arrival

When you arrive in Ecuador, you will have plenty of options for getting around. In fact, one of the perks is being spoiled for choice if you take an Ecuadorian cruise to the Galápagos Islands — which you certainly should! One note, road conditions and signage mean it's probably best to leave the driving to the locals. 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND ECUADOR

Ecuador has an efficient public transportation system, and because of its small size you can usually get to most places fairly easily.

  • Air 

Apart from the Galápagos Islands, flights from Quito also serve several destinations on the mainland, none of which last much more than an hour.

 

  • Boat

 In the Galápagos and the Oriente, boat travel is not only practical and/or necessary, but also part of these regions' attractions.

 

  • Bus

 Long-distance buses cover most of the country, with smaller local buses and shared taxis or trucks serving smaller villages.

 

  • Bicycle

Cycling in the Andes is strenuous, not only because of hill climbs but because of the altitudes. Road rules are few, and there are not many bike lanes around the country. But, after major investments in infrastructure, the roads are in good shape in Ecuador, and many larger cities have signed ciclovias (bike paths), some of which are closed to vehicle traffic on Sundays, notably in Quito. Bike shops are scarce outside of Quito, and those that do exist usually have a very limited selection of parts. Bring all important spare parts and tools from home. The country’s best mountain-bike tour operators are in Quito and Riobamba. 

Rent a Bike

Renting bikes is mainly for short tours, mostly from Quito, Riobamba, Cuenca and Baños.

 

  • Boat

Boat transportation is common in some parts of Ecuador and can be divided into several types.

Canoe -  The most common boat is the motorized canoe, which acts as a water taxi or bus along the major rivers of the Oriente (especially on the Río Napo) and parts of the northern coast. Most people experience this novel form of transport during a tour in the Amazon, as motorized canoes are often the only way to a rainforest lodge. These canoes often carry as many as 36 passengers. Generally, they’re long in shape and short on comfort. Seating is normally on hard, low wooden benches which accommodate two people each. Most river lodges provide bench cushions on their boats. If you're taking public-transport canoes: bring seat padding. A folded sweater or towel will make a world of difference on the trip.

Other Boats

In the Galápagos, you have a choice of traveling in anything from a small sailboat to a cruise ship replete with air-conditioned cabins and private bathrooms. Passenger ferries run infrequently between the islands, offering the cheapest means of interisland transport. Only folks traveling around the islands independently (ie, not on a cruise) need consider these. In addition to the dugout canoes of the Oriente, one live-aboard riverboat, the Anakonda, makes relatively luxurious passages down Río Napo.

 

  • Bus

Buses are the primary means of transport for most Ecuadorians, guaranteed to go just about anywhere. They can be exciting, cramped, comfy, smelly, fun, scary, sociable and grueling, depending on your state of mind, where you’re going and who’s driving. There have also been some tragic bus accidents in recent years. Most buses lack seat belts, but if you're on one that has them, do use them.

Most major cities have a main terminal terrestre (bus terminal), although some towns have a host of private terminals – and you’ll have to go to the right one to catch the bus going where you need to go. Most stations are within walking distance or a short cab ride of the town’s center. Smaller towns are occasionally served by passing buses, in which case you have to walk from the highway into town, usually only a short walk since only the smallest towns lack terminals.

Bigger luggage is stored in the compartment below and is generally safe. Theft is more of a concern for objects taken inside the bus. To avoid the risk of becoming a victim, keep whatever you bring onto the bus on your lap (not the floor or overhead). On average, bus journeys cost a bit more than $1 per hour of travel. Remember to always have your passport handy when you’re going anywhere by bus, as they are sometimes stopped for checks. This is especially true in the Oriente.

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN ECUADOR

 

  • Wyndham Guayaquil

Featuring a swimming pool and a fitness centre, Wyndham Hotel Guayaquil offers rooms with free WiFi and plasma TVs in Guayaquil. A restaurant is featured. Guayaquil Municipal Museum is 8 km away. Fully carpeted, rooms at Wyndham Hotel Guayaquil have large windows. All of them have heating, air conditioning and private bathrooms. Some rooms offer panoramic river views. Breakfast is served daily for an extra fee. International dishes can be ordered at the property’s restaurant, whereas drinks and snacks can be enjoyed at the bar. Wyndham Hotel Guayaquil is 180 km from Montañita Beach area. Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport is 4,8 km away.

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  • Hotel Kundalini

Only a 2-minute walk from Montañita downtown, Hotel Kundalini offers large green areas and is located right in front of the sea shore. A daily a la carte breakfast is included, and free WiFi access is available. Rooms at Kundalini Hotel are decorated with local materials and include free WiFi and a private lounge gallery. They are air-conditioned and have a private bathroom with hot water. Guests can relax and exchange experiences with other guests at the outdoor social area. Surf lessons can be taken and surf equipment can be hired. The daily breakfast consists of fruits, oats, tea and coffee, as well as the options of scrambled eggs, french toast, and fruit salad with yogurt and granola. Additionally, guests are offered yoga classes per request. Free water, tea and coffee are offered at the 24-hour front-desk. The hotel is a 2-minute walk from the bus station. Guayaquil Airport is 180 km away. Shuttle services can be arranged for an extra fee.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Royal Decameron Mompiche - All Inclusive

Royal Decameron Mompiche boasts an outdoor pool and rooms with balconies. It is only 100 m from the white-sand beach and offers free boat rides to the beach club Portete Island, 3 minutes away. At Hotel Royal Decameron Mompiche, every night the animation team offers shows for children and adults. Free gym facilities and a tennis court are available. There are 4 restaurants including 3 à la carte and a buffet restaurant. Guests can enjoy a tropical drink by the beach or at any of the 6 on-site bars. El Fortin Disco offers after-dinner entertainment. Spacious, air-conditioned rooms feature flat-screen cable TV and simple, contemporary décor. All rooms have private bathrooms with toiletries. Coronel Carlos Concha Torres airport is 114 km away. Guests who are driving can enjoy free on-site private parking.

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  • Wyndham Quito Airport

Offering a terrace and spa centre, Wyndham Quito Airport is located in Quito, 37 km from Atahualpa Olympic Stadium. The hotel has a hot tub and sauna, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. An airport shuttle is available upon request. Every room at this hotel is air conditioned and is fitted with a flat-screen TV. Some units include a seating area where you can relax. You will find a coffee machine in the room. The rooms are fitted with a private bathroom equipped with a shower. You will find a 24-hour front desk at the property. Quicentro Shopping Mall is 37 km from Wyndham Quito Airport, while La Carolina Park is 36 km from the property. Mariscal Sucre Airport is 1 km away.

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  • Hillary Nature Resort & Spa All Inclusive

Featuring an outdoor swimming pool, a private Zoo and a fitness centre, this All-inclusive resort offers free Wi-Fi access and a spa in Arenillas. A garden and a restaurant are featured on site. Machala city centre is 35 km away. Providing a tranquil environment, the suites and bungalows in Hillary Nature Resort & Spa feature private bathrooms, cable TVs, and minibars. The superior bungalow offers a spa bath and a balcony with panoramic scenic views. Hillary Nature Resort & Spa is 35 km from Bolivar port and 30 km from Puyango Petrified Forest. Santa Rosa airport is 15 km from the property and free private parking is possible on site.

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  • Sonesta Hotel Guayaquil

Only 2 km from Jose Joaquin Olmedo International Airport, Sonesta Hotel Guayaquil offers plush rooms with free WiFi and LED TVs. There is a spa, a swimming pool and a fitness centre. The Malecon is 6 km away. Fully carpeted, rooms at Sonesta Hotel are bright and airy. They feature wooden work desks and minibars. Some of them have dining areas. A buffet breakfast including 8 different varieties of bread, juices, fruits, eggs and waffles is served daily. Sabores y Vinos restaurant offers local and international dishes. Spa facilities include a sauna. Guest can make use of the fitness centre, or unwind on the terrace. The 24-hour front desk can secure airport shuttles. Sonesta Hotel Guayaquil is 2 km from Simon Bolivar Convention centre.

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  • Wyndham Manta Sail Plaza Hotel and Convention Center 

Featuring free WiFi and a spa centre, Hotel Sail Plaza Manta offers accommodation in Manta, 2.4 km from Murcielago Beach. Guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant or a drink at the bar. Free private parking is available on site. There is free shuttle service, a 24-hour front desk and hairdresser's at the property. You can engage in various activities, such as snorkeling and windsurfing. Manta Harbour is 3.5 km from Hotel Sail Plaza Manta, while Tarqui Beach is 5 km away. The nearest airport is Eloy Alfaro International Airport, 8 km from the property.

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  • Royal Decameron Punta Centinela - All Inclusive

Boasting oceanfront location along a beach in Santa Elena, the resort offers 2 swimming pools, an on-site tennis court, 2 á la carte restaurant, 1 buffet restaurant and 5 bars. WiFi is provided for a fee. Royal Decameron Punta Centinela Beach Resort & Spa Convention Center has gym facilities and beach side massage sessions can be booked for an extra fee. Bicycle rental, fishing and safety-deposit boxes can be arranged at an extra cost. The property offers an on-site nightclub open from Wednesday to Sundays from 22:30 to 02:00, a bar called 'Ceviches y Cervezas' open Mondays and Tuesdays, a movie theater and a karaoke room. Guests staying at Decameron can enjoy Mediterranean specialties at El Coral Restaurant and buffet meals at Costa Brava on an all inclusive plan that also features breakfast, snack and drinks. The property's yacht club also offers an a la cárte restaurant, El Muelle, that specializes in Ecuadorian-Peruvian seafood Ulpiano Páez Airport is a 20-minute drive and international Airport José Joaquín de Olmedo, in Guayaquil City is 170 km away.

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  • Termas de Papallacta

Featuring a spa, a restaurant, and a hot spring bath, Termas de Papallacta offers rooms and bungalows with free WiFi in Papallacta. Trekking and horseback riding activities are organized. The commercial district is 40 minutes away by car. Decorated with wooden walls and gabled roofs, rooms at Termas de Papallacta are fitted with wooden furnishing. Some of the bungalows feature seating areas with fireplaces. International dishes can be ordered at the restaurant. Guests can relax in the thermal and swimming pools. Several beauty treatments are available at the spa, including aromatherapy, therapeutic massages, body treatments with mud and clay or chocolate, individual hydro massages, and Turkish baths at the Thermal Cave. Trekking activities with local guides are organized to explore the unique species of the area. Quito is 1.5 hours away by car. Termas de Papallacta is a 1-hour drive from Tumbaco and 50 km from the airport.

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  • Mindo Lago Hotel Destino

Offering free WiFi and a restaurant, Mindo Lago Hotel Destino is situated in Mindo, 80 km from Quito. Pedro Vicente Maldonado is 39 km away. Free private parking is available on site. There is a private bathroom with a shower and free toiletries in every unit. Towels are provided. Mindo Lago Hotel Destino also includes a year-round outdoor pool. San Miguel de los Bancos is 14 km from Mindo Lago Hotel Destino. The nearest airport is Mariscal Sucre Airport, 47 km from Mindo Lago Hotel Destino.

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  • Radisson Hotel Guayaquil

Set in Guayaquil, 3.5 km from Saint Francis Church, Radisson Hotel Guayaquil offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a seasonal outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. 5 km from Malecon 2000 and 3.3 km from City Cemetery, the property provides a bar and a shared lounge. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, room service and free WiFi throughout the property. The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. Guests at Radisson Hotel Guayaquil can enjoy a continental or a buffet breakfast. The accommodation offers a sun terrace. Radisson Hotel Guayaquil features amenities such as an on-site business centre and hot tub. Artisan Market Guayaquil is 3.4 km from the hotel, while Central Market is 3.5 km away. The nearest airport is José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport, 6 km from Radisson Hotel Guayaquil.

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  • Hilton Colon Guayaquil Hotel

Offering complete, secure luxury accommodation, 1 km from San Marino Shopping Center and the down town district, the Hilton Colon offers spacious rooms with LCD TVs, a pool, 5 restaurants and 2 bars. Hilton Colon Guayaquil provides air-conditioning rooms with electronic locks, soundproof windows, hairdryer, and a work area. Some also offer a terrace or solarium. You will also find a tropical garden area and a wellness centre and spa. When dining, guests can chose from different cuisine types such as the Kioto Sushi Bar or Vereda Tropical Restaurant. Enjoy relaxed drinks by the pool at the Coco Bar or along music at the Atrium Bar. The Hilton is just 5 minutes' drive from José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport, 250 m from San Gabriel de la Dolorosa Church and 1 and a half hour from Galapagos Islands by plane.

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PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN ECUADOR

More than making up for its small size with an array of indigenous cultures, colonial architecture, scenic landscapes, and dense rainforests, Ecuador is one of the most fascinating nations in South America. Bordered by Colombia, Peru, and the Pacific Ocean—and no larger than most US states—this beautiful country attracts climbers, trekkers, adventurers, and nature lovers to its lush, ecologically important forests; wildlife watchers to its famous Galápagos Islands; and sun seekers to its pristine tropical beaches.

Once a part of both the Inca and later, the Spanish Empires, Ecuador still displays many influences from both groups, most notably in the rich culture of its people and the splendid colonial architecture of the capital city of Quito, much of which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

 

  • The Galápagos Islands

Since their "discovery" in the 16th century, the Galápagos Islands have intrigued and inspired visitors from around the globe. Named for the giant tortoises on the islands, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to a unique ecosystem that largely evolved without outside influences (mainland Ecuador lies some 1,000 kilometers to the east) and offers an exceptional opportunity for wildlife viewing. The Galápagos Islands remain one of the most active volcanic regions in the world, and the formation of the islands is still in progress. Most of the 13 large islands, six smaller islands, and 42 islets that make up the Galápagos were declared part of the Galápagos National Park in the 1950s, and visiting this fragile ecosystem can only be undertaken as part of a guided tour to designated visitor sites (there are, however, one or two areas visitors can go without a guide, including some areas popular with scuba divers). The main attraction here are its many bird species, of which 28 are unique to the islands, including the Galápagos penguin, flightless cormorant, and waved albatross, and the 13 species of Darwin's famous finches. 

Hot Tip: Be sure to book a behind-the-scenes visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station in Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island (tours of this important research facility can be made in advance of your arrival).

Consequence of Arctic Sea Ice Melt: Changing Weather at the Equator | Hydro  International

 

 

 

  • Seek Wildlife Encounters in the Galapagos Islands

Lying off Ecuador’s coast, the Galapagos Islands are like nowhere else on earth. This island chain has been untouched for centuries. Visitors will now find it teeming with unique wildlife and endemic species, not found anywhere else. Nature abounds both above and below the ocean’s surface throughout the Galapagos!  A visit to Galapagos National Park can be like wandering through a living museum. Visitors regularly encounter sea lions and iguanas by simply walking around the port or beaches. But that’s not all. Some common Galapagos wildlife encounters include:

  • Gazing upon wild flamingos,

  • Swimming with sea lions,

  • Watching wild penguins frolicking in a bay,

  • Stumbling across both marine iguanas & land iguanas,

  • Snorkeling with sharks, including hammerheads,

  • Gliding past dozens of sea turtles,

  • Visiting wild Galapagos tortoises,

  • Diving with giant manta rays,

  • Coming face-to-face with blue-footed boobies,

  • Spotting Galapagos hawks, finches, frigate birds, among other endemic bird species,

  • and possibly even having a rare encounter with a whale shark!

They’re all here in the Galapagos . The Galapagos Islands are undoubtedly one of the best places to visit in Ecuador for nature. And the famed islands are now more accessible for travelers than ever. Even those who are traveling on a budget can make a Galapagos trip a reality.

Wildlife you can see in the Galapagos on DIY island hopping trip includes: blue-footed boobie, tortoise, sea turtle, flamingo, marine iguana, and sharks

 

 

 

  • Quito: Ecuador's Historic Andean Capital

High in the Andes, Quito, the capital of Ecuador, is filled with colonial architecture and is the largest historic center in South America. Preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage site for its many old churches, beautiful public squares, and world-class museums, this city of 1.6 million people has long been a favorite with artisans and is a great place to shop for local art and crafts, from ceramics and wood carvings to colorful clothing. The most famous attraction in Quito's historic center is the San Francisco Church on the Plaza San Francisco. Dating back to the first half of the 1500s, the church's white-washed twin towers flank each side of the entrance to this massive complex. It's notable for its splendid Baroque interior and the Convent Museum of San Francisco with its religious paintings, sculptures, carvings, porcelain, textiles, and handcrafted furniture. Other beautiful churches to visit include La Compania de Jesus Church, constructed in the early 17th century and listed by UNESCO as one of the top 100 most important buildings in the world, and Quito's cathedral, Basílica del Voto Nacional, constructed in the 1560s. One of the top things to do here is to explore Plaza Grande, a beautiful square surrounded by important points of interest, including the cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Archbishop's Palace, and the Municipal Palace, as well as Calle La Ronda, a buzzing street lined with restaurants, cafés, art galleries, and other entertainment.

Quito City Tour | Explore Independence Square | Presidential

 

 

 

  • Cuenca

The beautiful city of Cuenca—officially known as Santa Ana de los cuatro ríos de Cuenca and home to some 330,000 souls—is located in southern Ecuador and is a delightful place to explore on foot. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city brims with splendid colonial influences and architectural treasures spanning 400 years and encompassing both Spanish and Indian elements.

The historic city center is also where many of Cuenca's key attractions lie, one of the most important being the Old Cathedral of Cuenca (Iglesia del Sagrario). Built in 1567 from stones taken from nearby Inca buildings, highlights include its old organ from 1739, its tower clock from 1751, and the Museum for Religious Art. Also worth a visit is the massive New Cathedral of Cuenca, built in the 1960s and hard to miss for its three beautiful blue-tiled domes. The Church of San Sebastian with its mix of Gothic and Neoclassical elements is also worth seeing. As you wander Cuenca's pleasant narrow streets, be sure to spend some time exploring the many squares and parks, including Calderon Park in the heart of the old town; Plaza San Blas Square, dominated by the Church of San Blas; and Plaza de San Francisco with its merchants selling textiles and other goods.

PhD defense / Maria Siguencia Avila: Conservation of the historic centre of  Cuenca, Ecuador 10/12 – Department of Architecture

 

 

 

  • Cotopaxi and Cajas National Parks

Two of Ecuador's most popular national parks, Cotopaxi and Cajas, are within easy driving distances from the cities of Cuenca and Quito and make wonderful day trips. Of the two, Cotopaxi National Park (Parque Nacional Cotopaxi), just 50 kilometers south of Quito, is perhaps the best known thanks to the massive (and still active, with its last eruption as recent as 2015) Cotopaxi volcano dominating the area, along with the smaller Rumiñawi and Sincholagua volcanoes. About 30 kilometers from Cuenca in Ecuador's stunning highlands, Cajas National Park (Parque Nacional Cajas) offers a different experience due to its numerous hills and valleys, making it a perfect place to hike and bike. It's also a delight for watersports enthusiasts, particularly kayakers and canoeists, thanks to its more than 270 lagoons and glacier-fed lakes. Finally, Podocarpus National Park, often referred to as the "Botanical Garden of America," offers a diverse range of flora and fauna. In the southeast part of the country, its humid mountain forests are home to more than 4,000 species of plants and trees (some as tall as 40 meters), including the famous cinchona, Ecuador's national tree.

Cotopaxi And Cajas National Parks, Ecuador | Iconx

 

 

 

  • The Boardwalk of Guayaquil

Ecuador's largest city in terms of population (2.3 million), the Pacific port of Guayaquil is well known as the gateway to the Galápagos Islands. In addition to its many historic sites, Guayaquil boasts great shopping and entertainment venues in its many picturesque squares and plazas, as well as along its splendid waterfront. The highlight for those who enjoy exploring on foot is the magnificent Malecón 2000, a two-and-a-half-kilometer-long boardwalk adjacent to the Guayas River. Undoubtedly one of the world's most memorable promenades, this remarkable urban renewal project winds along the river's west shore past many of the city's best attractions, including important historical sites, gardens, museums, and entertainment. For a real treat, take a tour boat on an evening trip up the river, when the city is lit up to beautiful effect. Other highlights include the splendid Guayaquil Metropolitan Cathedral and Museo Antropológico y de Arte Contemporaneo with its fascinating displays and collections focusing on the country's rich culture and history.

 

 

 

  • Nariz del Diablo: The Devil's Nose

A visit to the stunningly beautiful Nariz del Diablo ("The Devil's Nose") should be on everyone's bucket list. Whether you're a train enthusiast or not, this spectacular part of the Andes mountains near the town of Alausí is best seen aboard one of the country's superbly restored railways, part of a network that stretches across the country to some of its most scenic locations. The 12-kilometer return trip to Nariz del Diablo is undoubtedly one of the most popular and includes a fantastic sightseeing trip aboard a train that zigzags through a number of switchbacks as it climbs the near vertical sides of the mountain to the viewing station at its top. You'll have the chance to experience the rich culture of the Andes, including a visit to the Puñuna Condor Museum with its exhibits and displays relating to the area's indigenous people.

Private Devil's Nose Train and Ingapirca Ruins Tour 2020 - Cuenca

 

 

 

  • The Hot Springs of Baños

Thanks to its lovely surroundings and numerous hot springs, the small town of Baños de Agua Santa is a popular tourist destination within central Ecuador. Located at the western edge of the Amazon basin, Baños is nestled among dense jungle-like forests and offers numerous recreational opportunities including hiking and mountain biking. But the big draw are its mineral-rich hot springs and many waterfalls, some of them accessible from the town via a series of fun trails incorporating rope bridges with incredible views over the falls and their deep pools. Adventure sports such as whitewater rafting and kayaking are also popular here. More sedate things to do include visiting landmarks such as the Virgen de Agua Santa church with its famous statue of Mary (it's claimed she appeared at one of the town's waterfalls) and shopping for local goods such as colorful carved balsa parrots while enjoying the town's famous "melcocha," a type of candy made from cane sugar.

Termas De La Virgen in Banos, Ecuador | Best places to travel, Places to  go, Banos ecuador

 

 

 

  • Otavalo Market

In a pleasant valley surrounded by mountains lies the picturesque town of Otavalo. The town's big draw is its excellent market, one of the largest in South America, where locals and tourists alike come to buy colorful locally made rugs and blankets, sweaters, bags, and other wool products made by the indigenous Otavaleños people. Other notable items are the unique tagua nut jewelry, leather goods, indigenous costumes, as well as many interesting food items, in particular locally-produced spices. If visiting in June, be sure to check out the famous Inti Raymi (Festival of the Sun) music festival featuring numerous local musicians with their distinctive instruments and sounds.

Otavalo Marketplace and Cotacachi Town from Quito 2020

 

 

 

  • Exploring the Amazon's Upper Reaches in Tena

Another excellent place from which to experience some of the vast Amazon basin is the city of Tena, capital of the province of Napo. Famous as Ecuador's cinnamon capital, Tena was established by missionaries not long after the Spanish arrived in South America and is an increasingly popular destination for travelers due to its many opportunities for adventure. Highlights here are jungle excursions into the Amazon, along with fun river journeys, including whitewater rafting; canoeing; and kayaking down the Tena, Misahualli, and Napo Rivers, the latter of which flows directly into the Amazon. For those who enjoy their river action a little smoother, Tena also boasts a superb pedestrian bridge and tower high above the Tena River offering great views of the city.

10 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Ecuador | PlanetWare

 

 

 

  • The Beaches of Salinas, Bahía, and Montañita

While best known for its ecotourism and adventure travel opportunities, Ecuador also boasts a number of beautiful beaches worth visiting, whether for a short break from sightseeing or as a base for a longer sun, sand, and sea vacation. One of the most popular areas due to its many beach resorts is the coastal city of Salinas, located a little west of Guayaquil and boasting a consistently warm climate year-round. Also popular is the Pacific coastal city of Bahía de Caráquez. Situated on a pretty peninsula jutting out into the ocean, Bahía attracts many tourists with its fine beaches, numerous hotels, and lively entertainment scene. Another popular area, particularly among younger travelers and surfers, is Montañita in the south coastal region of the country (for families, head a little further south to the quieter beaches of the fishing village of Ayangue).

10 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Ecuador | PlanetWare

 

 

 

  • Climb a Volcano in Ecuador

There are dozens of volcanos throughout the country. And those who are fit for the challenge should definitely put summiting a volcano on their list of things to do in Ecuador. Some of Ecuador’s volcanos are fairly accessible for a day hike, while others require technical climbing skills. The following are some of Ecuador’s most notable volcanos to consider a trek up.  Rising 6,263 meters (nearly 4 miles high), Volcán Chimborazo isn’t just the tallest mountain in Ecuador. This inactive stratovolcano is the furthest point on Earth’s surface from the center of Earth. When measuring the height from the earth’s center, rather than sea level, Chimborazo clocks in even higher than Everest.

This happens because there is something known as the equatorial bulge. The earth is actually a bit wider around its midsection, caused by Earth’s rotation. Because of this, Volcan Chimborazo to be the closest point on planet earth to outer space. Summiting Chimborazo is a challenging high-altitude ascent requiring technical ice-climbing gear. Adventurers will also need at least two days to complete the overnight summit. The town of Riobamba acts as the staging ground for this climb. It’s here that adventure operators are able to assist and guide climbers. For a less extreme challenge on Chimborazo, it’s also possible to take a short day hike towards the summit. Whether hiking independently or as part of a tour, visitors can ascend to a small pond at an elevation of 5,100 meters high (16,732 feet).

International Opportunities at LaGrange College

 

 

 

  • Hiking Volcán Sierra Negra: Most Active Volcano in the Galapagos

Volcanos aren’t only limited to the Andes of Ecuador. The Sierra Negra Volcano on Isabela Island is the most active volcano in the island chain. And this volcano can make for a convenient day hike in the Galapagos! Well, that is, when this volcano is not erupting. Sierra Negra is quite active, having last erupted in the summer of 2018. Sierra Negra is actually one of the widest active volcanos on earth! The caldera stretches out 9.3 kilometers wide at one point, making it the largest of all Galapagos volcanos. It’s so wide that it’s virtually impossible to photograph the entire volcano. This 16 km (10-mile) hike up and around a portion of Sierra Negra’s rim is an awe-inspiring thing to do in Ecuador! Trekking across the black volcanic rock feels like walking on another planet. The otherworldly views that hikers are rewarded with from the top make the sweat-inducing trek totally worth it. Hiking Volcan Sierra Negra can be included as part of multi-day Galapagos tours. Yet those traveling the islands independently can find half-day hiking tours of Sierra Negra in the town of Puerto Villamil. It’s $35 per person, including a guide and transportation to the trailhead.

Hike Sierra Negra and Volcan Chico, Sierra Negra, Ecuador

 

 

 

  • Trek to the Glaciers of the Cotopaxi Volcano

This glacier-capped Volcán Cotopaxi is one of the tallest active volcanoes in the world! It’s also the 2nd highest point in Ecuador, with a summit is 5,897 meters high. That’s an elevation of about 3.6 miles in altitude! To reach the summit of Cotopaxi, it takes a grueling overnight ascent. Sometimes it’s even off-limits due to heightened volcanic activity. But a day trek to Cotopaxi’s base camp is a more accessible consideration. Hikers can reach an elevation of 4,864 meters, which is around the snowline and where the glaciers begin. Such Cotopaxi day trips can be organized from the town of Latacunga or Quito.

Ecuador Volcanoes: Grom & Team 100% on Cotopaxi Summit! | RMI Expeditions  Blog

 

 

 

  • Explore Ecuador’s UNESCO-listed Historic Centers: Quito & Cuenca

Ecuador has two historic centers recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites for their long-standing cultural value. Roaming around the ornate buildings of the centuries-old streets can make visitors feel like they’ve gone back to a different era. Quito is said to have the best-preserved, least altered historic center in all of Latin America. It’s this recognition that led Quito to become one of the first cities in the world to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, back in 1978. The historic center of Quito delivers not only cultural significance, but also lots of charm. Despite earthquakes and modernization, the baroque buildings in Quito’s Old Town remain largely intact. It’s enchanting to wander through bustling South American capital amongst the beautiful architecture that’s remained here for nearly a half-millennium! Grand plazas open up to historic churches while quaint cafes line the streets to museums that further detail the history of the city. Quito’s historic center is a fascinating place to wander around and deserves being firmly placed on any Ecuador itinerary. 

Things To Do in Quito Old Town

 

 

 

  • Float through the Amazon Jungle

Eastern Ecuador covers a wide swath of the Amazon Rainforest and holds many tributaries to the Amazon River. It takes some effort to reach this remote jungle environment. Yet those who do so are rewarded with awesome Amazonian experiences. Within the Ecuadorian Amazon, it’s possible to go fishing for piranhas, spot pink river dolphins, meet with a local shaman, and search for anacondas. In addition to common reptilian life throughout the jungle, visitors can also find monkeys, tapirs, or even an elusive jaguar. This is all set amongst the lush rainforest setting with its enormous tree canopies. The Ecuadorian Amazon is also home to remote native tribes, which makes for interesting visits and cultural exchange. It’s possible to explore Ecuador’s Amazon on your own. Yet the Amazon can be best approached as part of a tour and a lodge stay experience. Reserva de Cuyabeno is one of the best areas to see wildlife.

Magic River - Amazon Canoeing Tours and Lodge, Cuyabeno, EcuadorMagic River  Tours

 

 

 

  • Admire Ecuador’s Best Waterfalls

Given the many rivers flowing from the Andes, there are thousands of gorgeous waterfalls spilling their waters across Ecuador. In March 2020, it was reported that Ecuador’s highest waterfall, San Rafael, has seemingly vanished after a sinkhole swallowed part of its source waters. The once-notable waterfall in Ecuador is currently closed to tourism. Thankfully, there are still thousands more raging waterfalls to check out, scattered all throughout Ecuador.

 

1. Visit Palion del Diablo Waterfall: Among Ecuador’s Most Popular and Beautiful

Translated as the Devil’s Cauldron, Palion del Diablo is likely the most popular waterfall to visit in Ecuador and arguably the most scenic! The short trail to the waterfall includes lots of stairs and fun suspension bridges to traverse over. This adds to the adventure through a narrow canyon leading to the waterfall’s viewpoint. Yet soon enough, the 80-meter waterfall comes into view, along with the misty spray that regularly soaks visitors. This waterfall is easily accessed from Baños by bus, taxi, or cycling. And only a $2 entry fee to enter.

An overhead view of Devil's Cauldron waterfall alongside stairs of the trail

 

 

 

2. Visit Nambillo Waterfall Sanctuary

This waterfall sanctuary in the Mindo Cloud Forest holds one of the greatest concentration of waterfalls in Ecuador. There are at least fifteen different waterfalls found throughout the Nambillo Waterfall Sanctuary! The largest waterfall is the 50-meter (164 foot) Cascada Reina (Queen Waterfall). Continuing onward, hikers will encounter a series of a half-dozen more falls, each within a 10-minute walk of each other. To cool off after all that hiking, wear a bathing suit to soak in the natural pools that form below the falls. Entrance to the Nambillo Waterfall Sanctuary is $5, which includes a thrilling ride on a tarabita cableway to access the hiking trails. 

Heather stands in awe at the large Cascada Reina (Queen Waterfall)

 

 

 

3. El Chorro de Girón Waterfall

This 70-meter (230-foot) high waterfall dramatically plummets down from the Andes into a cloud forest environment. Known as Cascada El Chorro or the Giron Waterfall, it’s takes just a short hike of less than a kilometer to access on trails draped floras. This lesser-visited beauty can be accessed from the city of Cuenca. It’s about a 1.5-hour trip and the entrance will set you back $2.

El Chorro de Giron Waterfall near Cuenca

 

 

 

  • Discover Ecuador’s Ancient Inca Ruins

Ecuador holds many Inca ruins scattered across the country. One such archeological site can be found from right within the colonial city of Cuenca. The Pumapungo ruins in Cuenca are believed to be a part of the ancient city of Tomebamba that was first inhabited by the Cañari people before the Incas overtook it for use as a fort. It’s easily accessed in town and is free to enter. Part of the ancient Inca Trail (a popular pursuit in Peru to Machu Picchu) also runs through Ecuador. A 40-kilometer section of the UNESCO-listed Camino de Inca (Inca Trail) can be traversed from Alchupallas to Ingapirca. Ancient bridges, crumbling structures, and former Incan towns are passed along the way across this centuries-old trail through the Andes. Experienced trekkers with gear and navigation can give it a go on their own. But Ecuador’s Inca Trail is best approached as a guided trek. Ecuador’s Inca Trail ultimately leads to the ruins of Ingapirca, which can also be accessed by roadway. Ingapirca is the best-preserved and largest Inca ruin site in Ecuador. The stone terraces, walkways, and buildings at Ingapirca are punctuated by the impressive Sun Temple. Slits in the temple align perfectly with the sun on solstice days.

Ingapirca Sun Temple

 

 

 

  • Hike to one of Ecuador’s Spectacular Crater Lakes

Ecuador boasts three massively impressive crater lakes! Each one is a visual spectacle, special in its own merits. The Quilotoa Crater, El Altar, and Laguna Cuicocha should each be considered based upon location and the effort involved to reach. The Quilotoa Crater and Laguna Cuicocha can be accessed by bus or tour. But trekking around the craters is highly recommended. Meanwhile, El Altar is more remote and can only be reached by hiking in.

 

1. Hike Ecuador’s Most Popular Trekking Route: Quilotoa Loop

Quilotoa’s gorgeous three-kilometer wide caldera is a spectacular sight to see. This former volcano collapsed from an eruption, estimated to have occurred about 600 years ago. It now lays filled with water, transformed as a deep crater lake. It’s easily possible to trek down into the Quilotoa crater as a day trip from Quito. But for a more complete trek around the Quilotoa Crater, consider embarking on the 3-day Quilotoa Loop trek. This 34-kilometer trek is along a well-worn trail that connects farming communities. It’s in these Andean villages where hostels are found, offering comfy places to sleep and homecooked meals to eat. So packs can stay light! This is Ecuador’s most popular trekking route and one of the most enjoyable multi-day treks we’ve completed in South America. 

Heather sits on crater rim of Laguna Quilotoa

 

 

2. Climb to the Rim of El Altar for High Andes Adventure

El Altar is a collapsed volcano near Riobamba that now contains a beautiful crater lake known as Laguna Amarilla. The El Altar Crater is also part of Sangay National Park. That’s recognized as Ecuador’s only other natural UNESCO World Heritage Site, right alongside the Galapagos Islands. The trek to El Altar takes 2-3 days to complete the 35-kilometers roundtrip hike. But beware that it is more challenging than the aforementioned Quilotoa Loop. The trek to El Altar is more remote, more grueling, often muddy, more planning is involved, and hikers must pack in all of their food and supplies. Yet the payoff for this extra effort is very rewarding.

Sitting atop El Altar looking down into Laguna Amarilla

 

 

 

3. Trek around this Gorgeous “Guinea Pig” Lake: Laguna Cuicocha

This stunning slice of nature is the result of yet another exploded volcano, occurring over 3,000 years ago. Although the two islands scenically popping out from the middle of the lake were formed during subsequent eruptions. Those islands are thought to resemble the backs of two guinea pigs. Hence the name of this lake, Cuicocha, which means “guinea pig lake” in the indigenous Kichwa language. This impressive crater lake is impossibly blue on a clear day. Laguna Cuicocha is accessible as a day excursion from Quito that also includes a visit to the Otavalo markets. Yet those who visit by day trip may only have enough time to gaze out upon the crater lake. If staying in nearby Otavalo or Cotacachi, it’s possible to reach the crater lake by public bus and taxi. That will provide visitors enough time to trek the entire 14-km perimeter of the crater lake and even take a boat ride around the namesake islands.

Laguna Cuicocha crater lake with islands that look like guinea pigs in blue lake

 

 

 

  • Go Birdwatching in one of the Best Birding Destinations in the World: Mindo

Ecuador holds so many awesome birdwatching opportunities throughout the country. In the Galapagos, birders can find blue-footed boobies, endemic Galapagos hawks, finches, frigate birds, and more. In the Andes, some travelers are lucky enough to spot an Andean Condor. In the Amazon, toucans and colorful parrots thrive. Yet there’s another destination that is renown across the world for its vast birding opportunities. The Mindo Cloud Forest is one of the premier birding destinations on earth! More than 500 different types of birds have been spotted in Mindo. In fact, Mindo regularly holds the annual world record for the most bird species counted within a 24-hour period. Birders travel to Mindo specifically searching for varieties of toucans, parrots, quetzals, and even umbrellabirds! Yet one of the most sought-after birds to spot in Mindo is the Andean cock-of-the-rock, also known locally as gallo de la peña. This elusive red bird is known for its early-morning lek. That’s a song-and-dance males perform as a competitive courting ritual to impress the females. Even for those not into birding, Mindo can be a perfect place for beginners to give it a try. Grab a pair of binoculars and set off on one of the many birding tours that are offered through the area. Yet it’s also possible to go hiking through the cloud forest on your own in an attempt to spot some of Mindo’s avian life. And it takes no effort at all to spot the many hummingbirds buzzing around.

Mindo, un paraíso para los amantes de las aves | Pacá Pallá | El blog de  viaje de los gelitos

 

 

 

  •  Mountain Bike Down the Andes Mountains

Ecuador has some awesome downhill bike rides for adventure-seekers who want to fly down the Andes on two wheels! There are great opportunities to rent bikes in Ecuador or join a cycling day tour through some of the most scenic locations. (1) Mountain biking down Chimborazo, (2) though the Waterfall Route from Baños, and (3) down the Cotapaxi Volcano round out our top three suggestions for biking adventures in Ecuador.

Collage showing mountain biking down Chimborazo: bikes being transported atop SUV, handlebars, and two mountain bikers riding down

 

 

 

  • Swing off the End of the World!

Ecuador has a love affair with large crazy swings that fly high over cliffsides. The swing at Casa de Arbol in Baños is thought to be the original and has become the most popular of Ecuador’s high-flying swings. But other imitators have since popped up in additional places throughout the country that we’d dare say may be even better than the original!

Top 5 Things to Do in Baños, Ecuador

 

 

 

  • Go Ziplining through the Cloud Forest

There are a number of great ziplining runs throughout Ecuador. You can find ziplines in the Andes surrounding Cuenca and others soaring over canyons near Baños. Yet we suggest the best ziplining opportunity in Ecuador is the canopy tours offered through the lush Mindo Cloud Forest. Mindo may be best known for birding. Yet it is also becoming an awesome hub for adventure pursuits in this unique cloud forest environment. There are some serious ziplining routes in Mindo to soar amongst the toucans. It takes more than an hour to complete all ten zip-lines that add up to a 3,640-meter long course (nearly 12,000 feet). Yet it only costs $20 USD for the entire length of this awesome canopy tour. It’s not only one of Mindo’s best activities. Their ziplining courses are firmly one of the best things to do in Ecuador!

Scout Adventure #9 // Lost in Translation Over Ecuador's Cloud Forest — The  Scout Project

 

 

 

  • Go Whitewater Rafting from the Mountains to the Jungle

With fast-moving rivers flowing down the Andes mountains, there are some excellent whitewater rafting opportunities in Ecuador! Down towards the Amazon basin, the town of Tena is a main base for whitewater rafting activity in Ecuador. The Jatunyacu River, which flows into the Napo River, is a major tributary to the Amazon. And it makes for some fine whitewater rafting. It’s not every day you can have the opportunity to go whitewater rafting in the Amazon basin. The Jatunyacu River is the most popular whitewater run in the area, with class III+ rapids in a picturesque jungle setting. The rapids are mild enough for beginners, yet still offer some bouncy thrills across swift moving waves. Trips down the Jatunyacu are priced from $50 – $85 and many reputable operators can be found in Tena. 

Moving further up in the Andes, the adventure hub of Baños offers some more whitewater action down the rushing Pastaza River. The dips and spills on class III & IV rapids can really add a jolt of adrenaline to any Ecuador trip! It’s a pretty setting too, given the river flows down amidst towering canyon walls in some sections. With prices set around $30 for the 5-hour rafting tour from Baños, it’s one of the most economical whitewater rafting trips we’ve encountered anywhere in the world. There’s no shortage of rafting operators around town offering the trip daily within this price range.

Getting Wet and Wild, Whitewater Rafting in Baños | Review

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT  IN ECUADOR

For the foreign traveler, Ecuador provides an adventure into sampling a selection of colorful cuisine, some of which is older than even the Incas. Here are the list of Turisti-Info to the most traditional food to the area that you must try when you visit.

 

  • Fanesca

A very hardy, chunky, sacred stew, the tradition is to serve fanesca only once a year – the week before Easter Sunday. Among other ingredients it features figleaf gourd (“sambo”), squash, and a variety of beans – 12 in total – and grains including lentils, corn, fava beans, parsley and various herbs. Each of the 12 different beans represents an apostle, and a cut of salt cod alludes to Jesus. It is generally consumed only during lunchtime, in the presence of friends and family.

Fanesca - Traditional and Authentic Ecuadorian Recipe | 196 flavors

 

 

 

  • Chugchucaras

“Chugchucaras” is a word in the Quechua, the Pre-Colombian language of the locals that translates into “chest-feet-skin,” with said parts belonging specifically to a pig. In addition to the chunks of deep fried pork, pork rinds, and pig’s feet, however, the platter features boiled hominy (coarse ground corn), small potatoes, toasted corn, plantain and a small, cheese-filled empanada. There’s an urban legend that the pig itself is cooked with the waters of a local fountain, San Martin, to provide it a “miraculous” flavor.

CHUGCHUCARAS ROSITA, Latacunga - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number  - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Guaguas de pan

Guaguas de pan, or “bread children,” prepared during Day of the Dead celebrations, is another exotic Ecuadorian food that has a unique religious association. These sweet pastries filled with jelly are meant to resemble infants tightly wrapped in swaddling clothes – though it might also be a distant echo of the Pre-Colombian tradition of mummifying the dead. Thus, not all pastries are consumed, but taken and left on the tombstones of the dearly departed. The guaguas – another Quechuan word – are served with a thick, sweet, brewed purple beverage known as a colada morada, featuring blueberry, blackberry, pineapple rind and sugars and spices.

Guaguas de pan {Ecuadorian bread babies or figures}

 

 

 

  • Quinoa

The quinoa grain has been a staple of the Andes going back to even pre-Incan society. The most commonly sold and consumed quinoa is ivory quinoa, though black and red quinoa is almost as popular; studies suggest there are as many as three thousand different varieties. Increasingly attracting attention to the wider world due to its high concentration of protein and lack of gluten, there as many ways to serve up quinoa in Ecuador as there are to serve up rice, though many enjoy simple quinoa soup, made with onion, butter, and salt.

Quinoa and Corn Chowder from Ecuador | The Sassy Spoon: Fun Food!

 

 

 

  • Fried plantain

Commonly sold on street corners, a large plantain – a cousin of the banana – cut down the middle, filled with a slice of mozzarella and roasted over a grill has been a popular, inexpensive – USD$1 – and surprisingly nutritious fast food for decades in Ecuador.

Culinary Adventures in Ecuador: The Pleasure of Eating in a Foreign Country  | ISEP Study Abroad

 

 

 

  • Ecuadorian ceviche

Ceviche – a cold serving of marinated seafood – is ubiquitous in any Latin America nation that borders an ocean, but Ecuadorian ceviche has its own slight distinctions. Like Peruvian ceviche, it features seabass and shrimp. Unlike the Peruvian variety, it’s served along with the very juices it has been prepared in. It is usually served with toasted corn, popcorn, and/or plantain chips.

Love Shrimp? Try Chef Andrés Dávila's Excellent Ecuador-Style Ceviche |  Ceviche, Recipes, Ecuadorian food

 

 

 

  • Llapingachos

Llapingachos – pronounced ya-peen-gah-choes – technically are friend potato patties stuffed with cheese, but they are also sometimes prepared with flour made from yuca, a root vegetable. The patties are also served with peanut sauce. The dish originated in the city of Ambato, and is especially popular with people living in Ecuador’s sierras.

LLapingachos 2kg de batatas brancas/1 cebola picada/2 col de sopa de óleo  de urucum/1 gema /1 xíc de queijo branco ralado/4 ceboli… | Food, Ecuadorian  food, Recipes

 

 

 

  • Morocho

Made from a combination of milk, sugar, and a ground white corn native to Ecuador, morocho – a thick, sweet beverage, like the aforementioned colada morada – is commonly sold on street corners and open-air markets. Prepared with vegetables and with less sugar, it can also be offered up as a soup.

Morocho | KeepRecipes: Your Universal Recipe Box

 

 

 

  • Quimbolitos

Similar to the Mexican tamale, quimbolitos offer ground corn or occasionally quinoa, wrapped in palm leaves and steam-cooked. They often have raisins and are offered as a dessert treat, but they can just as well include beef, chicken, pepper, and a diced hard-boiled egg and be served as a main meal.

The International Breakfast Project: Ecuador - Quimbolitos and Coffee

 

 

 

  • Bolon de verde

Made from crushed green (meaning not-ripe) plantain, a bolon de verde – which roughly translates into “green ball” – is like a large dumpling. Lovers of fried food should relish a bolon de verde, since the core ingredient is fried once to soften it, before being mashed and mixed with pork and/or cheese, formed into a ball, then fried again.

Bolón de Verde Recipe on Food52

 

 

 

  • Fried yuca

The yuca root – also known as cassava – is the third most popular source of carbohydrates in the world, even if largely unknown in North America and Europe. Fried yuca is as common as French fries. The gluten-free starch derived from the yuca root is used to make tapioca.

Yuquitas (Fried Yucca Sticks/Yucca Fries) a la Huancaína | New World Review

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN ECUADOR

Trading in Ecuador is a time-old tradition, making shopping in the country a firm favorite. Highlighting Ecuador’s tactile skills are the many local markets where handicrafts like cheeseboards, rugs and jewelry are sold in abundance. Every knickknack imaginable can be found in the markets, as well as more contemporary items like football t-shirts. Shopping malls are covered across the country too, selling diverse apparel for every occasion, books, technology, home décor and food.

 

  • Quito

As the country’s capital and most populous area, Quito has a wide range of shopping options. Shopping centers are a popular choice and an easy go-to, but for authentic Ecuadorian items, Quito will not disappoint. The Olga Fisch Gallery shows off Ecuador’s artisans with exquisite pieces of clothing, paintings and crafts. At Tianguez Ecuador’s many indigenous tribes are apparent through the primitive paintings, trinkets and fine art. In Quito’s market area you can also find a variety of aromatic herbs, exotic barks, leaves and seeds often used by indigenous people for medicinal purposes.

Quicentro Shopping | Tiendas

 

 

 

  • Cuenca

Cuenca holds the country’s most famous hatter, Alberto Pulla, an 81 year old who died in 2010 whose masterpieces have topped the heads of many, from indigenous locals to presidents. The chemicals he once used in the production process damaged his throat and left him with no voice. Visitors are welcomed into his shop to try on the panamas but Panamas aren’t the only item Cuenca has going for it: ceramic artist Eduardo Vega also lives in the area and his intricate artistry is seen at his local studio.

Guide to Mall del Rio in Cuenca Ecuador (Maps and Photos) | GringosAbroad

 

 

 

  • The Andes

For a taste of traditional life, visit one of the many Andean villages where they continue to trade with neighboring communities on a weekly basis. The markets are startlingly colorful, with countless fruits and patterned materials on display. As a visitor it’s a great way to experience local life, taste traditional foods and discover some truly unique buys.

4 cosas que hacer cerca de BellaNatura - BellaNatura

 

 

 

  • Guayaquil

An entire block of Downtown Guayaquilis is taken over by local artisans selling their carefully crafted wares. Typically Ecuadorian items make an appearance here, like panama hats, knickknacks and Otavalo-style sweaters, but you can also find internationally branded items to please the masses. Make sure to bring your bargaining skills with you as the art is fully expected in Guayaquil.

NEWS EL EMIGRANTE | Noticias del Ecuador y el mundo | Página 3

 

 

 

  • Cotacachi

Lying northwest of Otavalo, Cotacachi is the top notch choice when it comes to shopping for leather goods: it’s a leather lover’s haven. Bags and satchels rival ladies’ purses and men’s wallets, belts line up next to shoes of various size and design. Jackets are a stylish choice, while shoes are a sensible one, given that the leather here is excellent quality and sold at a reasonable price.

Otavalo Marketplace and Cotacachi Town from Quito 2020

 

 

 

  • Otavalo

Otavalo is Ecuador’s, and perhaps South America’s, most famous market. Selling alpaca sweaters, hand crafted goods, paintings, jewelry, rugs and more, it is the ideal place to discover Ecuador’s artistic skills and pick up some unique souvenirs. Early risers can visit the Saturday morning animal market too, where locals show off their beasts and push a hard bargain with other traders.

Otavalo Market Day Tour - Ecuatraveling

 

 

 

 

Shopping Tips

‘Bartering’ or ‘bargaining’ is expected in Ecuador’s markets, so don’t be afraid to give it a go. The food at markets is also very good and very cheap, so make sure not to eat too much before visiting. Carrying small change is a good idea to avoid embarrassment or trouble breaking into larger notes. 

 

KESKIVIIKKO, 14. LOKAKUUTA 2020
GLACIER EXPRESS SWITZERLAND " SCENIC TRIP BY TRAIN"

Bernina Express and Swiss Alps - Full Day Trip - Zani Viaggi

When it comes to countries offering scenic train rides it doesn't come much better than Switzerland. With an efficiency that would make most other nations blush with shame and views that are hard to beat (did someone say the Alps?), the Swiss could justifiably rest on their railway laurels and nobody would complain. But keen to always be improving the services, this March saw the national carrier introduce a new, even higher standard of travel on the country's most famous route. 

The journey in what has been dubbed the world’s slowest express train takes travellers across the Alps within roughly eight hours, passing through 91 tunnels and over 291 bridges. The Glacier Express running to/from St Moritz and Zermatt since 1930, is on every train enthusiast's wishlist. A wonderful journey through some of Switzerland's legendary landscapes, it starts off in the uber-chic snow resort of St Moritz and, some eight hours later, arrives in equally glitzy Zermatt, with a view of the iconic Matterhorn thrown in for good measure. Between those two towns, the track runs through several sections of genuinely world-class scenery, highlights being the stretch from Disentis to Andermatt, across the Oberalp Pass, the highest point of the trip, and the Landwasser Viaduct, a six-arched, 65-metre high feat of engineering completed in 1902.

7 Of The Most Picturesque Train Trips In The World

 

Passengers could previously enjoy all this Swiss splendour from comfortable second-class carriages and very comfortable first-class carriages, but now, for the ultimate Glacier Express experience, there's a new class on the block, Excellence Class. Started in March 2019, the Excellence upgrade gives you (and 19 other exclusive passengers) a window seat for full panoramic appreciation, a seven-course meal with champagne, access to the Glacier Bar (with a gold-plated ceiling compass in case you need to know which direction you’re travelling), a tablet with lots of route information, and the services of a concierge because why not?

 

Take a ride on the Glacier Express in Excellence Class

 

All this luxury inevitably comes with a price – the one-way journey from St Moritz to Zermatt in Excellence Class will set you back some 688 Swiss Francs (around €608) but for a once-in-a-lifetime train journey, especially if rolling on the rails is your thing, it’s undoubtedly worth it.

Children aged under six travel free (buy an extra seat reservation if you don't fancy a young child on your lap for eight hours), and children aged six to 16 years pay half-price plus seat reservation. Rather than going for the on-board three-course lunch, served in the dining car or brought to your seat, consider bringing your own picnic. All aboard!

 

 

 

FACTS GLACIER EXPRESS

Route: Zermatt – St. Moritz or vice versa
Distance: 291 km
Duration: 8 h 03 min

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO SEE

The Glacier Express takes the following route through the Swiss countryside: Zermatt – Visp – Brig – Andermatt – Disentis – Chur – St Moritz (or Davos). Each stop allows enough time to get some fresh air outside of the train, with a longer stop (30 minutes) in Disentis, allowing enough time to disembark and stretch the legs or purchase some snacks at a fraction of the price you will pay on board.

 

  • Matterhorn glacier paradise – a view of French, Italian and Swiss mountain giants from a vantage point of almost 4000 m

A day in the Matterhorn glacier paradise | Zermatt Bergbahnen

 

 

 

  • Gornergrat – a view onto the Matterhorn and 28 other four-thousand-meter-peaks from a vantage point of 3131 m

Gornergrat | Zermatt, Switzerland

 

 

 

  • Rhine Gorge – Exploring the «Grand Canyon» of Switzerland between Ilanz and Reichenau on foot, by bike or by rafting boat

Austrian Explorer

 

 

 

  • Lake Sils – at 1800 m, Europe’s highest altitude regular scheduled passenger boat service

File:Maloja - Lake Sils.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

  • Corvatsch – the eastern Alpine region’s highest altitude summit station at 3303 m. A paradise for skiers and hikers

Ski lesson St. Moritz: Diavolezza-Corvatsch-Pontresina (half day), from €60  per person - Yakki

 

 

 

 

VILLAGES & TOWNS

With around 8 hours on board there is more than enough time to experience the Swiss countryside from the comfort of your window. Not only does the Glacier Express stop in a number of Swiss towns, but also passes effortlessly by a number of smaller villages and regions.

From Zermatt, the train descends through the Mattertal line, passing through a handful of small towns such as TäschRandaSt. NiklausStalden, and larger towns like Visp and Brig.

From here the train passes through the Furka section, into a winter wonderland as you pass through Andermatt, another popular ski destination.

Onwards to Chur, the train then passes through the impressive Rhine Gorge – home to huge rock faces and a turquoise river that is very popular for locals to enjoy water activities such as kayaking and canoeing.

From Chur the train heads onwards through the Albula line and passes some of the most impressive scenery of the entire journey. This is where you will see the famous Landwasser viaduct (a great photo opportunity) and a number of castles in the mountains and valleys.

Glacier Express Switzerland | World of Wanderlust

 

 

 

 

 

BEST SEASON TO GO ON TRIP

Any season can be great if the sky is clear enough to enjoy the views. In October, the brilliantly colored trees make the trip a special experience. In Winter, the special touch is the massive amounts of snow on the Oberalp Pass and mostly in the valleys too. Our personal favorite is Spring (April to June), as that offers the perfect combination of green valleys and snowy mountains.

Travel Switzerland Like a Gentleman Aboard the Luxury Glacier Express | The  Manual

 

 

 

 

 

REGULAR TRAINS VERSUS GLACIER EXPRESS

You are not required to travel with the Glacier Express if you want to enjoy the scenery of the Glacier Express route. There are regular train services on the same line as well. The regular trains do not offer the panoramic windows and the same level of comfort, but other than that you can see the landscape just as well.

The regular trains are local trains, so you would have to switch trains multiple times to cover the whole route. The Glacier Express is the only direct train from Zermatt to St. Moritz. Realistically, the Glacier Express is the best way to see the route if you plan to do it in one day. The local trains are an alternative to cover only part of the route or do it in multiple days. Also they're a good option if you're traveling when the Glacier Express does not operate.

 

 

 

 

 

THE GLACIER EXPRESS

Traveling on board the Glacier Express is comfortable. Both 1st and 2nd class coaches have panoramic sealed windows all the way to the roof. The train is air conditioned. Information about the routes and sites along the way is provided via headphones.

The 1st class seats are more spacious as there are only three seats across, versus four in 2nd class. Food and drinks will be served at your seat. Also there's an on-board bar and restaurant. If you want to splurge to have the most exclusive ride, you can book a seat in the Excellence Class coach. There are no more than 20 passengers in Excellence Class, and they all have window seats. There is a bar area, personal travel guidance, and a premium multi-course lunch.

glacierexpress.excellenceclass.696 ⋆ SnowAction

 

 

 

 

 

TIPS IF YOU DONT HAVE TIME TO DO FULL ROUTE

For the best experience, we recommend to spend at least one night in Zermatt, do the full Glacier Express ride, and spend at least one night in St. Moritz. However, if you're based in another town you can still enjoy part of the route as a day trip. Some examples:

  • From Interlaken: take a train to Brig and board the Glacier Express there. Get off the train in Chur. Then take a train back to Interlaken. This day trip takes 9 to 10 hours.
  • From Lucerne: take a train to Chur and board the Glacier Express there. Get off the train in Brig. Then take a train back to Lucerne. This day trip takes 9 to 10 hours. If you get off the Glacier Express in Andermatt instead of Brig the trip takes 7.5 to 8.5 hours.
  • From Zurich: take a train to Chur and board the Glacier Express there. Get off the train in Brig. Then take a train back to Zurich. This day trip takes 8 to 9 hours. If you get off the Glacier Express in Andermatt instead of Brig the trip takes 6.5 to 7.5 hours.

Another option is to combine the Glacier Express and Gotthard Panorama Express. Detailed schedules can be found in the timetable.

 

 

 

ST MORITZ

The journey ends (or begins for travellers heading in the opposite direction) in St Moritz, infamously known as the winter playground for the International Elite (translation: its expensive).

Popular in both winter and summer, there isn’t a great deal to do in St Moritz outside of these seasons and as we came to learn, it becomes quite a ghost town outside of these times. Regardless it was a nice pit stop for a couple of nights after such a long travel day and used this time to refresh before the onward journey to the Italian lakes district!

BERGFEX: St. Moritz: Holiday St. Moritz - Travel St. Moritz

You can book your Excellence Class journey independently or let someone else take care of the logistics by using Vacation By Rail.

 

TIISTAI, 13. LOKAKUUTA 2020
LIMA, PERU

The Top Things to Do & Places to Visit in Lima, Peru

Lima is one of South America's best kept secrets. Once treated as a stopover by travelers on their way to the famous Machu Picchu, the capital of Peru has always been a vibrant destination in its own right. And the world is now taking notice. 

This sprawling metropolis is the second-driest world capital, rising above a long coastline of crumbling cliffs. To enjoy it, climb on the wave of chaos that spans high-rise condos built alongside pre-Columbian temples and fast Pacific breakers rolling toward noisy traffic snarl-ups. Think one part southern Cali doused with a heavy dose of America Latina.

But Lima is also sophisticated, with a civilization that dates back millennia. Stately museums display sublime pottery; galleries debut edgy art; solemn religious processions recall the 18th century and crowded nightclubs dispense tropical beats. No visitor can miss the capital’s culinary genius, part of a gastronomic revolution more than 400 years in the making. This is Lima. Shrouded in history (and sometimes fog), gloriously messy and full of aesthetic delights. 

The city of more than 9 million citizens is a sprawling metropolis with sights and smells at every turn. The historic city center, given the name Ciudad de los Reyes (City of Kings) by Spanish conquistadors, enchants visitors with its pre-Columbian history and colonial architecture. Meanwhile, the modern Miraflores district beckons sun seekers and trendsetters and the Barranco district is a bohemian paradise. Plus, any world-traveling foodie will tell you that the vast and delectable Peruvian cuisine is not to be missed. In short, Lima has something for everyone. Don’t even think of missing it.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT LIMA, PERU

The best time to visit Lima is from December to April. Since Lima is in the Southern Hemisphere, these months offer warm, summer weather (sometimes upward of 80 degrees). The city's geography as a coastal desert means it experiences moderate temperatures throughout the year, very little rainfall, but plenty of high humidity. If you visit from May through November, considered Lima's cooler months, you're likely to find what locals call la garua: a thick misty sea fog that hangs over the city along with overcast skies. 

 

December to April  - Summer in Lima is peak tourist season, and with good reason. High temperatures hover in the upper 70s and 80s, with sunny skies and few clouds (Lima experiences very little rain, aside from the occasional isolated shower). You'll want to find a good vantage point for sunsets, which are known for being colorful this time of year. Be mindful that Easter and other religious holidays are considered national holidays in Peru, so some shops and restaurants may be closed.

May to November - Winter in Lima is characterized by overcast skies and mild temperatures ranging from the mid-50s to the low 70s. You'll likely find misty fog and light rain through the city's winter months, but this also means you can expect discounts on lodging as tourist demand is lower. This is also a good time to experience local festivals and celebrations, such as Peruvian Independence Day. If you consider yourself a foodie, then plan your visit during the annual Mistura, the largest food festival in South America, in September.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO LIMA, PERU

Lima is the gateway for international tourists and business travellers to Peru. Getting to Lima is easy. The capital of Peru is well connected to the world and can be reached by air, road and sea, while a flight might be the most convenient way to get there. Lima is also the starting point to all other destinations within Peru.

 

By Air - Flights to Lima arrive at Jorge Chavez International Airport in Callao which is around 13km from the city center and about 18km from the tourist district of Miraflores. Several international airlines operate regular direct or connecting flights to Lima's airport from numerous cities in North and South America as well as Europe. Major airlines serving Jorge Chavez International Airport are American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Delta Airlines, Air Canada, Iberia and KLM.

By Road - The Pan American Highway (Pan Americana) is Peru's only international highway running from north to south along the coastline. In the north it connects Ecuador and the Peruvian cities of Tumbes, Piura, Chiclayo and Trujillo with Lima; in the south it connects Chile, Arequipa and Nazca with the Peruvian capital. The Central Highway (Carretera Central) runs from east to west and links the Peruvian highlands with Lima.

By Sea - Since Colonial times Lima's international port is located in Callao, some 13km away from the city center. Vessels from all over the world bring cargo and sometimes travelers to the capital of Peru. Nowadays even some international cruises find their way to Lima via the port of Callao. Major cruises include Princess Cruises, Holland America, Regent Seven Seas, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises and Seabourn.

By Train - There are no international rail services to Lima. The only public train leaves and returns to Lima's Desamparados Train Station on a regular base for a trip on the world's highest railway connecting Lima with the Andean town of Huancayo.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND LIMA, PERU

The best way to get around Lima is on foot. To a first-timer, getting around Lima can be a little complicated. Not only is Lima the name of the city, but also the name of a district within the city, as well as the name of the region surrounding the city and the larger Peruvian province in which the city and district lies. If you're exploring the Historic Center or strolling the Malecon in Miraflores, you'll be fine on foot. There are a few transit options for traversing districts; the best one depends on how far you're going. Taxis are readily available, but you'll want to stick to prearranged rides (most hotels can call one for you) because street taxis are unregulated. The city also has multiple options for public transportation, but make sure to familiarize yourself with your route or carry a map along. You should avoid renting a car, as Limeños will tell you that it's a hassle to drive in the chaotic city. 

 

On foot - You can walk around the central (Lima) district to soak up the sights or spend the day strolling Miraflores , where most tourists and travelers base themselves. There are plenty of public plazas and squares to rest in along the way. Just make sure to bring along plenty of water and comfortable shoes. Also, there aren't any official crosswalk laws so look both ways before crossing the street.

Taxi - Taxis are a good way to explore more of Lima's popular districts, but travelers should be cautious when choosing a cab. Taxis are unregulated in Lima, so it's best to have your hotel arrange one for you – especially at night – even though you'll pay a little more to do so. If you do hail a taxi on the street, make sure to agree on a price before you get in the vehicle.

Public Transportation - Lima has an extensive bus system and a metro. The metro is easy to navigate but only offers one line that mainly services more inland districts of the city. Bus service, however, is much more widespread. The city offers a rapid transit bus system called Metropolitano that provides an efficient way to travel from one district to another because it uses private lanes to bypass Lima traffic. It's a good idea to familiarize yourself with the main street near your desired destination before boarding since most buses have the main avenues along their route painted on the side. If you're unsure if you're on the correct route, ask the cobrador (bus conductor).

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN LIMA, PERU

 

 

  • Dazzler by Wyndham Lima San Isidro

Set in Lima, 6 km from Larcomar, Dazzler by Wyndham Lima San Isidro offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. With a bar, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, room service and luggage storage for guests. At the hotel, all rooms come with a desk. Guests at Dazzler by Wyndham Lima San Isidro can enjoy a buffet breakfast. The accommodation offers a sun terrace. Dazzler by Wyndham Lima San Isidro features amenities such as an on-site business centre and hot tub. Museum of the Nation is 6 km from the hotel, while San Martín Square is 7 km away. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International, 13 km from Dazzler by Wyndham Lima San Isidro, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Helen's House El Mirador

Set in Lima, within 500 m of Larcomar and 8 km of Museum of the Nation, Helen's House El Mirador offers accommodation with a garden and free WiFi throughout the property as well as free private parking for guests who drive. The property is around 11 km from San Martín Square, 11 km from Government Palace of Lima and 11 km from Museum of the Santa Inquisicion. The property is 3 km from Huaca Pucllana and 4.4 km from Los Delfines Beach. The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. At Helen's House El Mirador all rooms are equipped with a private bathroom with a bath. Speaking English and Spanish at the 24-hour front desk, staff will be happy to provide guests with practical information on the area. Las Nazarenas Church is 12 km from the accommodation, while Monterrico Racecourse is 12 km away. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 19 km from Helen's House El Mirador.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Tierra Viva Miraflores Centro​

Situated in Lima, 1.5 km from Larcomar, Tierra Viva Miraflores Centro features accommodation with free WiFi and free private parking. The property is located 7 km from Museum of the Nation, 9 km from San Martín Square and 10 km from Government Palace of Lima. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, and currency exchange for guests. At the hotel, the rooms have a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. All rooms at Tierra Viva Miraflores Centro have air conditioning and a wardrobe. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a buffet breakfast. Museum of the Santa Inquisicion is 10 km from Tierra Viva Miraflores Centro, while Las Nazarenas Church is 10 km from the property. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 18 km from the hotel.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Andesmar Hotel

Situated in the exclusive Miraflores district in Lima, Andesmar Hotel offers accommodation right on Grau Avenue, only a 12-minute walk from Larcomar shopping mall. Free WiFi and parking are available on site. A complimentary buffet breakfast is served daily. Rooms at Andesmar Hotel are spacious and feature a private bathroom with free toiletries, a SMART TV with cable channels, air conditioning, a minibar, and a microwave. Guests are also provided with a complimentary bottle of water in the room. Guests can enjoy a drink or a snack at the Terrace Bar. Andesmar Hotel also features a 24-hour front desk, a concierge service, a tour desk, and a luggage storage. Shuttle services can be requested at the front desk for a surcharge. Laundry services are offered for a surcharge. Parque Central de Miraflores is 400 m away. Museum of the Nation is 6 km from Andesmar Hotel, while San Martín Square is 8 km away. Jorge Chavez International Airport is 14 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • AC Hotel by Marriott Lima Miraflores

Set in Lima, 140 m from Larcomar, AC Hotel by Marriott Lima Miraflores offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a fitness centre and a bar. The property is situated 8 km from Museum of the Nation, 11 km from San Martín Square and 11 km from Government Palace of Lima. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, room service and free WiFi. All guest rooms come with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a coffee machine, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel, all rooms include a private bathroom with free toiletries. Buffet and à la carte breakfast options are available every morning at AC Hotel by Marriott. The accommodation offers a terrace. A business centre and vending machines with drinks are available on site at AC Hotel by Marriott Lima Miraflores. Museum of the Santa Inquisicion is 12 km from the hotel, while Las Nazarenas Church is 12 km from the property. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 20 km from AC Hotel by Marriott.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Tierra Viva Miraflores Mendiburu

Tierra Viva Miraflores Mendiburu has a privileged location, in the middle of the best gastronomic area of Miraflores; at walking distance from the best restaurants in Peru, such as: Cevicheria La Mar, Mercado, Pescados Capitales, La Cucharita, Matria, among others. Three blocks away from the ocean view sidewalk and with fast access from the "Costa Verde" makes arrival very easy and ideal for corporate and leisure travellers. The 36 rooms have a king or two twin size beds, private bathroom with high-pressure showers, A/C, 40" LCD with cable, national and international telephone service, hair dryer, safe, desk, among others. Buffet breakfast is included, along with Wi Fi and a bottle of water. In addition, the property offers internet centre and hot beverages, in the lobby, available 24 hours a day.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Pariwana Hostel Lima

Pariwana Hostel Lima in Lima provides adults-only accommodation with a restaurant, a bar and a shared lounge. Featuring a tour desk, this property also provides guests with a terrace. The accommodation offers a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, a shared kitchen and free WiFi throughout the property. Guests at the hostel can enjoy a continental or a buffet breakfast. Guests can enjoy playing table tennis or sing karaoke, or take advantage of the business centre. Larcomar is 2.1 km from Pariwana Hostel Lima, while Museum of the Nation is 6 km away. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 18 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • La Casona Azul

Featuring a shared lounge, garden and views of garden, La Casona Azul is located in Lima, 700 m from Larcomar. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and a concierge service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The guest house features family rooms. The guest house offers a continental or buffet breakfast. La Casona Azul offers a terrace. Museum of the Nation is 8 km from the accommodation, while San Martín Square is 10 km away. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 19 km from La Casona Azul.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Villa Soriana

Set 9 km from Las Nazarenas Church, Villa Soriana offers accommodation with a garden, a terrace and a 24-hour front desk for your convenience. Free WiFi is offered throughout the property. There is a fully equipped private bathroom with shower and free toiletries. à la carte and American breakfast options are available every morning at the bed and breakfast. San Martín Square is 9 km from Villa Soriana, while Government Palace of Lima is 10 km from the property. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International Airport, 8 km from the accommodation.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Uli´s house

Located in Lima, Uli´s house provides free WiFi, and guests can enjoy free bikes, a shared lounge and a garden. A continental breakfast is available daily at the bed and breakfast. Uli´s house offers a terrace. Larcomar is 2.8 km from the accommodation, while Museum of the Nation is 6 km away. The nearest airport is Jorge Chavez International, 20 km from Uli´s house, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN LIMA, PERU

The bustling capital of Lima has more than enough to entertain visitors for a couple of days. But before visiting the City of Kings, you should learn about the attractions that make Lima, well, uniquely Lima. Check out the list of Turisti-Info to the Places to visit & things to do in Lima.

 

  • Enjoy Peru’s best museums

If you want to see museums in Peru then Lima is your place. The nation’s capital is home to all of Peru's most famous and well maintained museums and all containing the country’s most prized possessions. The top museums to visit are Larco Museum, MALI and Museo Oro.

Best Museums in Lima: Our Top Choices - The Only Peru Guide

 

 

 

  • Surf in a big city

There’s not many places in the world that offer big city lifestyle with year-round waves but Lima is one of them. You’ll find waves only a short walk down from Miraflores and one of Peru’s best breaks, la herradura, only a short drive away. Lima is a great city to be a surfer in!

The Best Surf Spots in Lima, Peru

 

 

 

  • Paraglide over the Pacific Ocean

For those looking for a little bit of a rush, you can take a paraglide over Miraflores, the cliffside and the Pacific Ocean. Head to Lima’s Miraflores district and you’ll find paragliders taking off all year. It’s there for you if you can muster the courage.

Paragliding in Lima

 

 

 

  • Enjoy the world’s best restaurants

Restaurante Central and Maido are just two of the star-studded restaurants that call Lima home. Both respectfully rank in the top 10 in the world and are part of Lima’s culinary revolution. Now world-class restaurants abound, serving Peruvian classics like ceviche with modern twists.

Maido - 51-1

 

 

 

  • Explore the Big city ruins

There, embedded in the thick of high rises and Lima traffic, stands the ancient pyramid Huaca Pucllana, which dates back to around 500 A.D., well before the Inca controlled Peru. The ruins are a sight to behold amongst the modernity of Lima. You can take tours of the site or even have dinner on the ruins at night.

The Most Beautiful Ruins to Visit in Lima, Peru

 

 

 

  • Try the Best ceviche in the world

Peru’s flagship dish is without a doubt ceviche. You can find delicious plates of the dish served nearly everywhere, all fresh and absolutely delicious.

Lima for Foodies: A Culinary Capital

 

 

 

  • Try the Pisco Sour

The drink that calls Peru home was invented and mastered in Lima, which means no trip to the capital is complete without trying the country’s national cocktail. If you want to drink a glass with historic company, go to El Gran Hotel Bolivar, where JFK, Walt Disney and Hemingway all stayed and enjoyed the drink.

5 Great Places to Drink a Pisco Sour in Lima – Fodors Travel Guide

 

 

 

  • Walk the historical center

Lima’s historical center is a living museum. You can see some of the country’s finest colonial architecture and most striking buildings.

Lima Free Walking Tour: The Best Way to See the City! - The Only Peru Guide

 

 

 

  • Eat chifa in Barrio Chino

Limeños and visitors alike are obsessed with chifa, Peruvian Chinese cuisine. It is one of Peru’s most beloved food and the very best is found in barrio Chino, near Lima’s historical center. Gorge out on chaufa (fried rice) and lomo saltado (a stir fry with meat and french fries), two of the most beloved chifa dishes.

Chinatown in the middle of Lima's biggest market - Review of Barrio Chino,  Lima, Peru - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Oldest colonial house in South America

Casa di Aliaga is widely considered the oldest colonial house in South America. The mansion dates back to the 16th century and was a gift from Pizarro to one of his wealthiest backers. The mansion has survived countless earthquakes, fires and even wars. You can take tours of the house and view its beautifully remodeled interior.

Highlights of Lima with Yampu Tours | Luxury Travel Blogger - Carmen Edelson

 

 

 

  • Ancient Peruvian erotic pottery

Museo Larco is now famous for its collection of pre-Incan pottery, replicas of which can be found at any gift shop in Peru. The images are entertaining and worth a trip to Museo Larco alone.

5000 Years of Peru's History at the Larco Museum | dare2go

 

 

 

  • Barranco

Hang out all day in Lima’s most hippy and bohemian neighborhood. There is plenty to do, from shopping at boutique stores to checking out the colorful streets of Barranco.

Where to eat, sleep and shop in Lima, Peru - The National

 

 

 

  • The Anniversary of Lima

On January 18, Lima celebrates the day it was founded by the Spanish conqueror Francisco Pizzaro. There are parades and parties taking place all over the city.

LIMA PERU - HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!

 

 

 

  • Plaza de Armas

The historical center of Lima is an architectural beauty and worth a day to explore. There is the spectacular Presidential Palace, the old cathedral, and plenty of beautiful balconies to enjoy looking at.

The Colonial and Republican Lima from Plaza de Armas to Plaza San Martín -  Enigma Blog

 

 

 

  • Bike Along the Malécon de Miraflores

The most beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean are undoubtedly those from the Miraflores boardwalk, perched up on a stunning cliffside. Rent a bike and explore all of it.

Neighborhood Guide to Miraflores: Lima's Stylish Hotspot | kimkim

 

 

 

  • El Circuito Mágico del Agua

This water park is a great place to bring kids and let them run around and get wet from all the shooting fountains; just remember to bring a towel.

Circuito Mágico Del Agua, Lima

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN LIMA, PERU

Peruvian cuisine finds itself at the center of a growing international buzz. In this cosmopolitan city, entire streets and neighborhoods specialize in a single type of food. With its endless supply of exotic ingredients and chefs producing new twists on classics, Peru’s capital is slowly but surely becoming the foodie capital of South America. Turisti-Info gather the ten of Lima’s top restaurants.

 

 

  • Astrid y Gastón

Character, humor and native dishes form the basis of this fine-dining empire. Hidden behind a nonchalant, colonial facade, this stylish and modern spot serves a creative criollo-Mediterranean menu. Astrid y Gastón is the signature restaurant of Gastón Acurio, Peru’s celebrity chef and creator of a burgeoning empire of fine-dining restaurants not only in Lima, but also other cities in both North and South AmericaHigh, white, peaked ceilings and orange walls decorated with colorful modern art create a warm and sophisticated environment. Specialties include spicy roasted ribs or the excellent noble robado fish served in miso sauce with crunchy oysters.

Lima restaurant ranks in World's 50 Best: Peru For Less

 

 

 

  • El Mercado

A tribute to Peru’s cuisine, El Mercado opened its doors in 2010 as the brainchild of top chef Rafael Osterling's curiosity to experiment with new spins on traditional recipes. El Mercado tries to establish a permanent, respectful dialogue with its sources, the sea, producers, fishermen and farmers. The restaurant is a canopy-covered patio with rattan-backed chairs, where the wooden tables are set with charming retro print place mats. The large menu is presented on crude workmen’s clipboards adding to the market-like atmosphere. One of the most beautifully presented dishes is the ceviche pejerrey (silverside fish), small filets of pejerrey perfectly lined up in a bright yellow lime, aji amarillo marinate.

El Mercado :: Lima, Peru -SHANEA SAVOURS :: TOR//MIA//NYC

 

 

 

  • Malabar

A minimalist restaurant owned by rising culinary star Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, Malabar has always ranked among the top five in Summum, Peru’s equivalent of the Michelin guide. Influenced in particular by Amazonian produce and cooking techniques, Schiaffino’s seasonal menu features delicacies such as crisp, seared cuy and Amazonian river snails bathed in a sauce made with spicy chorizo. Other stand-out dishes include tiradito (a refined ceviche) of sole dyed magenta using a medicinal herb from the Amazon, with tumbo juice from the Andean fruit in the marinade, served with tobiko (flying-fish roe). For an after-dinner treat, Malabar’s desserts are perhaps the lightest and most refreshing in Lima.

Malabar - Lima - Restaurant - 50Best Discovery

 

 

 

  • Brujas de Cachiche

The 'Witches of Cachiche' celebrates 2,000 years of local culture with a menu that’s a taste of the cuisines of pre-Columbian Peru, with ancient recipes and ingredients included. The extensive menu presents classic Peruvian dishes, such as ají de gallina, but concentrates on fish, shellfish and fine cuts of meat with interesting twists and unusual accompaniments. In this sprawling old house with the several warmly decorated dining rooms, guests can taste a steak in pisco-butter sauce with braised mushrooms. Among the excellent desserts, several continue the indigenous theme, such as mazamorra morada (purple corn pudding and dried fruit). On top of excellent dining options, Witches of Cachiche is also home to various gastronomic festivals.

Brujas de Cachiche Reviews | TripExpert

 

 

 

  • Restaurant Cordano

Known as the President’s cafe, this restaurant is on the list of the not-to-miss spots in Soutth America. A Lima institution since 1905, this old-world dining hall has served practically every Peruvian president for the last 100 years and is considered a historic monument by the National Institute of Culture. Located across the street from the presidential palace, Cordano serves local specialties like tacu-tacu, a traditional Lima dish of beans and rice fried together in a crispy pancake called acorazado de bolsillo.

Restaurante Bar Cordano, Lima - Cercado de Lima - Menu, Prices & Restaurant  Reviews - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • El Ricon Que No Conoces

With a name that translates to ‘The Corner Joint You've Never Heard Od', one might expect this to be a modest little hut. Instead, it’s a rather handsome and cozy two-story restaurant with high ceilings and a warm atmosphere. Head chef Teresa Izquierdo Gonzales has been cooking here for 30 years. Although her neighborhood joint may have become a little more polished and popular over the years, it hasn’t deviated from its mission of classic creole cooking. In this authentic, amiable and old-school Peruvian criollo restaurant, a good place to start is with a causa (a yellow potato torta stuffed with chicken, shrimp or tuna), or perhaps a palta rellena (stuffed avocado). The menu is long, portions are large and even the most discerning of foodies can’t go wrong.

El Rincón Que No Conoces | Travel + Leisure

 

 

 

  • Huaca Pucllana

Located within the compound of a 1,500-year-old adobe pyramid built by the original inhabitants of Lima, Huaca Pucllana is one of the city’s greatest dining experiences. This beautiful and serene restaurant with knockout views of the pyramid and secluded in the midst of Lima’s chaotic jumble, makes for a remarkable night out. The low hump of adobe bricks and excavation walkways are illuminated at night, and diners can take a tour of the construction and digs after dinner. The restaurant is handsomely designed in a rustic colonial style. The menu is creatively Peruvian, with fusion touches spicing up classic criollo cooking. Excellent appetizers include humitas verdes (tamales) and causitas pucllana, balls of mashed potatoes with shrimp and avocado.

cuy (guinea pig) - Picture of Huaca Pucllana, Lima - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Rafael

Set inside a vivid red 1920s house with a modern interior and art deco details, Rafael Osterling's warmly welcoming restaurant serves Peruvian fusion with Mediterranean influences. Pizza, prosciutto, figs, basil and pine nuts jostle on the starter menu with ceviche of sole, scallops and black baby clams, and tiradito nikkei, yellowfin tuna sashimi with yuzu (a Japanese citrus fruit), mirin (rice wine), guacamole and smoky sesame oil. Some of the most recommendable mains include a stew of north Peruvian grouper cheeks with vongole, calamari and confit potatoes, and a Peruvian dish of rice and puy lentils with pan-fried foie gras, river shrimp, scallops and roast banana.

Best restaurant in Lima - Review of Rafael, Lima, Peru - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • La Mar Cebichería

Everyone in Lima seems to be lining up to get into this upscale cevicheria by famous chef Gastón Acurio. Fashionable, stylishly designed, and moderately priced, it represents the best of traditional Limeño cooking, but with an edge. The airy, plant-filled space has a chic, modern touch, with an angular, poured concrete facade, bamboo roof, turquoise chairs, and cement floors. The fish is always fresh and carefully prepared. The restaurant even features a cool cocktail bar with great pisco-based drinks like the cholopolitan. But owing to cevichería tradition, it’s strictly a daytime affair.

La Mar Cebicheria, Miraflores, Lima, Peru | Peruvian recipes, Food,  Gastronomy

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN LIMA, PERU

Lima is without a doubt the best place to shop for just about everything in Peru. It is home to Peru’s most famous and best designers, with their shops lining the streets of Miraflores and San Isidro. The nation’s capital also has Peru’s best and largest malls – one in particular has an unrivaled view – so when you find yourself in Lima, get ready to shop until you drop.

 

 

  • Larcomar

Larcomar might be the most beautifully located mall in the world. It is on the cliffside of the Miraflores boardwalk with a view of the Pacific Ocean and surfers catching the waves below. On a sunny day, you can’t find a better view in Lima. The mall is filled with European and American brands, and when you get hungry, the mall has some of Peru’s best and most well-known restaurants.

Pin on Perú

 

 

 

  • Avenida La Paz

When you’re shopping in Miraflores – and in Lima – you won’t find a shopping mall that has all the stores you’re looking for, but you’ll find streets that are mostly made up of boutique stores, and Avenida La Paz is one of those. Walk down the street and pop your head into all the shops that catch your eye.

Lima Flats 3 2127 Avenida La Paz, apt C902 Lima

 

 

 

  • Jockey Plaza

Jockey Plaza is Peru’s mega-shopping mall extraordinaire. It is one of Peru’s newest, so it is equipped with the best facilities and is similar in style to western mega-malls. You’ll find shops and boutiques offering everything from clothes and home appliances to boutique shoes and sports gear.

Jockey Plaza, Lima | Ticket Price | Timings | Address: TripHobo

 

 

 

  • Los Conquistadores Avenue

This street in San Isidro is home to the best collection of boutique stores in all of Peru. It is lined with shops selling cutting-edge fashion using Peruvian materials and traditions.

Skip Larcomar: Where To Shop Local In Lima

 

 

 

  • Dedalo Arte y Artesania

This renovated colonial mansion has it all, from quality handmade furniture to designer accessories and handcrafted pottery. Explore the entirety of the mansion, popping into all of the shops. If you get hungry, there’s food to be had and beers to be drunk in the back.

Dedalo arte & artesania (Lima) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go  (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Calle Miguel Dasso

Another boutique-lined street in San Isidro, this one is also filled with designer brands from Peru’s best up-and-coming designers. The boutique stores in San Isidro are expensive, so make sure to bring plenty of Peruvian soles for shopping. Most places will also accept American money. If you’re in the mood for Peruvian chains and a shopping center, it’s only a short walk away and makes for a perfect full day of shopping.

Calle Miguel Dasso - Lima

 

 

 

  • Mercado Indio

Not exclusive by any stretch of the imagination, but certainly the best place to go if you’re looking for souvenirs, this building is lined with vendors selling Peruvian T-shirts, key chains, and all the alpaca gear you could ever want. It’s the perfect place to head before you leave Peru so that you can stock up on gifts for your friends and family back home.

Mercado Indio Lima - Shopping at the Indian Market in Miraflores

 

 

 

SUNNUNTAI, 11. LOKAKUUTA 2020
MACHU PICCHU IN PERU

Machu Picchu 2020: Tours And Activities | Machupicchu Hop

There's nowhere on earth like Machu Picchu. Located in the mountains of Peru, the city was constructed by the Inca Empire at an altitude of 7,900 feet. Even to this day, no one knows for sure why they risked their lives to build such a dramatic fortress, but one thing's certain: anyone who visits this magical site will be glad that they did. Perched atop sheer mountain cliffs, Machu Picchu is astounding, even before you learn its huge stone slabs were put together without any mortar. Visitors can take photos of the Urubamba River far below, climb nearby Huayna Picchu for breathtaking views, and tour the various buildings, including the Temple of the Sun.

Shrouded by mist and surrounded by lush vegetation and steep escarpments, the sprawling Inca citadel of Machu Picchu lives up to every expectation. In a spectacular location, it’s the most famous archaeological site on the continent, a must for all visitors to Peru. Like the Mona Lisa or the pyramids, it has been seared into our collective consciousness, though nothing can diminish the thrill of being here. This awe-inspiring ancient city was never revealed to the conquering Spaniards and was virtually forgotten until the early part of the 20th century.  

In the most controversial move in Machu Picchu since Hiram Bingham's explorations, the Peruvian authorities changed entries from daily visits to morning and afternoon turns in 2018. Visitors must plan more carefully than ever to seize the experience. Though an expanded limit of 5940 people are now allowed in the complex (including the Inca Trail) daily, demand remains insatiable. One of mankind's greatest and most mysterious engineering achievements, Machu Picchu is sure to leave everyone spellbound.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT MACHU PICCHU

The rainy season in Machu Picchu officially begins in October and runs until April, but November to March are easily the wettest months. July and August are the peak months, when crowds can make it harder to enjoy the ruins at their best, so think about visiting in September or late spring.

 

 

 

 

REASONS TO VISIT MACHU PICCHU

  • The Stunning Location

Machu Picchu is beautiful, and nothing compares to witnessing this beauty in person. Floating far above the river below, with the jagged peaks of the Andes all around, it's more like a work of art than a city.

  • Learn About Some of the World's Greatest Engineers

Visiting Machu Picchu is a great chance to learn about the Incas. Some of history's greatest builders, the Incas constructed Machu Picchu without using wheels - an incredible feat.

  • Mountains to Climb and Trails to Hike

If you love hiking or climbing, Machu Picchu is an outstanding destination. Right next to the site itself you have the chance to climb Huayna Picchu, and there are hiking trails in almost every direction.

  • Unbeatable Tour Guides

Visitors to Machu Picchu don't need to explore the ruins on their own. Licensed experts with companies like Machu Picchu Tour Guides are on hand to explain how and why the Incas chose to build in such a challenging spot.

  • An Incredible Climax to a Vacation on the Inca Trail

Machu Picchu doesn't have to be the only Inca site you visit in Peru; it's the ideal way to round off a walking tour on the Inca Trail. Once an Inca road, the Trail takes five days to complete and is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO MACHU PICCHU

Plane -  Most visitors to Machu Picchu fly into Lima with carriers like Delta or American Airlines and then transfer to local flights to Cusco. From there, you can take a rail connection to Aguas Calientes, which lies at the foot of the ascent to Machu Picchu. It is advisable to spend a few days in Aguas Calientes to become acclimatized to the higher altitude. After two or three days, you should be ready to start your journey to Machu Picchu.

Train - Visitors can choose from three companies: Inca Rail, Peru Rail, and Belmond Hiram Bingham Trains. Belmond offers a more luxurious service, with plush wooden compartments and fine wines, while the other two companies would suit a more budget-conscious traveler. The gorgeous ride along the Urubamba River takes around five hours.

Car - Thanks to reliable rail connections, driving to Machu Picchu isn't really necessary, but it can almost be done. You can't drive as far as Aguas Calientes, but the road from Cusco to Ollantaytambo almost takes you to the foot of the Inca Trail. Rental companies in Cusco include Europcar, Hertz, and Auto Rent Cusco.

Bus - Local buses are a cheap way to travel from Cusco to Ollantaytambo, but you'll have to catch a train from there to Aguas Calientes. The bus costs just S/17, while a taxi to Ollantaytambo costs around S/120.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND MACHU PICCHU

Public Transportation - Catching a bus is the easiest way to get from Aguas Calientes to the ruins of Machu Picchu. Buses leave from the main station or the train station at Puente Ruinas, which is slightly closer to the ruins, and tickets can be purchased from the kiosk opposite the train station. The cost is S/15 from the town center and S/10 from Puente Ruinas.

Taxi and Driving - There are no taxis in Aguas Calientes, and you can't drive there either. The only way into the town is by train, and the only route from Aguas Calientes to the ruins is by bus (or walking). However, you can drive from Cusco to Ollantaytambo or pay around S/80 for a taxi.

Walking - For many people, the best way to reach the ruins of Machu Picchu is on foot. The four mile path is well signposted and takes between 90 minutes and two hours to complete - and the views are incredible.

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STA IN MACHU PICCHU

 

  • Casona del Inca Machu Picchu

Set within 3.8 km of Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary and 6 km of Huayna Picchu, Casona del Inca MachuPicchu features rooms in Machu Picchu. All rooms boast a flat-screen TV with cable channels and a private bathroom. The property offers a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi is available throughout the property. At the guest house, the rooms come with a wardrobe. Guests at Casona del Inca MachuPicchu can enjoy a continental or a buffet breakfast. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Machu Picchu Hot Spring, Bus Stop and Wiñaywayna Park.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Golden Sunrise Machupicchu

Boasting a bar, shared lounge and views of river, Golden Sunrise Machupicchu is situated in Machu Picchu, 300 m from Machu Picchu Hot Spring. This 4-star hotel offers a tour desk and luggage storage space. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, a shuttle service, a concierge service and free WiFi throughout the property. At the hotel, the rooms are equipped with a wardrobe. At Golden Sunrise Machupicchu rooms have a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. Continental and buffet breakfast options are available each morning at the accommodation. Golden Sunrise Machupicchu offers a sun terrace. Popular points of interest near the hotel include Bus Stop, Wiñaywayna Park and Craft Market.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Samuel's House

Samuel's House is located in Machu Picchu, 700 m from Machu Picchu Hot Spring and features a shared lounge. The property is close to several noted attractions, around 2.5 km from Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary and around 2.6 km from Huayna Picchu. Attractions in the area include Stadium, a 1-minute walk away, or Craft Market, situated 100 m from the property. All guest rooms in the hotel are fitted with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. Featuring a private bathroom with a bath or shower and free toiletries, rooms at Samuel's House also feature free WiFi. All rooms have a desk. A buffet breakfast is served each morning at the property. Speaking English and Spanish at the 24-hour front desk, staff are always on hand to help. Bus Stop is 300 m from the accommodation, while Wiñaywayna Park is 300 m from the property. The nearest airport is Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport, 76 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • El Mistico Machupicchu

Located in Machu Picchu, 200 m from Machu Picchu Hot Spring, El Mistico Machupicchu features a tour desk and free WiFi throughout the property. Featuring family rooms, this property also provides guests with a terrace. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, a shared lounge and currency exchange for guests. At the inn every room comes with a desk and a private bathroom. A continental breakfast is available daily at El Mistico Machupicchu. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Wiñaywayna Park, Bus Stop and Craft Market.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  •  Perutambo

Perutambo offers rooms in Machu Picchu near Craft Market and Manuel Chavez Ballon Museum. Among the facilities at this property are a shared lounge and a concierge service, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. Guest rooms at the inn are equipped with a seating area, a flat-screen TV with cable channels and a private bathroom with a hairdryer and a shower. The units include a wardrobe. Guests at Perutambo can enjoy a buffet breakfast. Guests at the accommodation will be able to enjoy activities in and around Machu Picchu, like hiking. Popular points of interest near Perutambo include Machu Picchu Hot Spring, Bus Stop and Wiñaywayna Park.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Modo Viaje Hostel

Featuring free WiFi access in general areas, a complimentary breakfast and conveniently located only a 5-minute walk from the train station, Modo Viaje Hostel offers accommodations in Aguas Calientes, Machu Picchu. Rooms here all include bed linen and towels, and are fitted with either shared or private bathroom facilities. Some rooms offer a mountain view. At Modo Viaje Hostel guests will find a 24-hour front desk. Other facilities offered at the property include a tour desk and luggage storage. Additionally, and considering there are no cars in Aguas Calientes, the hostel offers a helpful walked assistance service from the train station, where staff will help and guide passengers towards the hostel. The guest house enjoys a privileged and tranquil location near shops and restaurants yet far from the noisy areas of town. There is a handicraft market only 100 m away and Machu Picchu Hot Springs are 600 m away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Kaypi Machupicchu

Kaipy offers accommodations with free WiFi in Machu Picchu. Each room here features a private bathroom with free toiletries and cable TV. A daily American breakfast is included. At Kaipy guests will find free shuttle service. Other facilities offered at the property include a shared lounge, a tour desk and luggage storage. The Hostal is a 3-minute walk from the train station and a 10-minute walk from the city's main square and hot springs.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Hostal Urpi

Located 30 m from Plaza de Armas Square, Hostal Urpi offers accommodations in Machu Picchu. Free WiFi access is available. Each room here features cable TV and a private bathroom with free toiletries. A daily breakfast is included. At Hostal Urpi guests will find free shuttle service and a 24-hour front desk. Other facilities offered at the property include a tour desk, luggage storage and shops (on site). The property is located steps from the train station and the central market.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Pablo's House

Pablo's House is situated in Machu Picchu, within 600 m of Machu Picchu Hot Spring and 2.4 km of Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary. Popular points of interest around the property include Craft Market and Bus Stop. The property provides a 24-hour front desk. The rooms in the guest house are fitted with a TV with cable channels. The private bathroom is equipped with a shower. Huayna Picchu is 2.5 km from Pablo's House, while Stadium is a 3-minute walk away. The nearest airport is Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport, 76 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Kcuychi Hospedaje

Kcuychi Hospedaje is located in Machu Picchu, within 6 km of Huayna Picchu and 7 km of Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary. The property is set 100 m from Craft Market and 1 km from Manuel Chavez Ballon Museum. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, a shared lounge and currency exchange for guests. Featuring a private bathroom, rooms at the guest house also offer free WiFi. A continental breakfast is available daily at Kcuychi Hospedaje. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Machu Picchu Hot Spring, Bus Stop and Wiñaywayna Park.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO GO & THINGS TO DO IN MACHU PICCHU

Machu Picchu is undeniably Peru’s premier tourist attraction and few visitors to the country fail to make their way to the hilltop ruins of the ‘Lost City of the Incas’. Almost everyone has seen pictures of the enigmatic ruins nestling on their perch on top of a mountain, surrounded by swirling wisps of cloud. However, not everyone is so familiar with the highlights and unmissable sights within the complex. Turisti - Info gather the list of places to visit & things to do in Machu Picchu to make your visit worthwhile. 

 

  •  Hike up to Machu Picchu

If you are staying at Aguas Calientes, you will need to wake early and queue for the bus, especially if you hope to secure tickets for Huayna Picchu. If you are feeling particularly energetic or you just want to beat the crowds, you can hike up to Machu Picchu. The route is more direct than if you take the bus and depending on how fast you go, it will take you between one to three hours.

Hiking the Inca Trail: Our Top Safety Tips

 

 

 

  • See the Sunrise from Machu Picchu

Another reason to hike up to Machu Picchu is to catch the sunrise – although this is also possible if you take the earliest bus. Another bonus, you will be able to explore the ruins before the tour groups arrive. If this sounds exciting then why not check out this tour that is designed to catch the first rays in Machu Picchu?!

How to See the Machu Picchu Sunrise- it's Worth it! | Howlanders

 

 

 

  • Climb Huayna Picchu

The classic photo of Machu Picchu that everyone seems to take always features a large protrusion of rock rising up in the background. This rock is Huayna Picchu and it is possible to climb to the top of it for some of the best views of the site and the surrounding mountains. However, only 400 people are permitted to scale it per day, so you should reserve tickets well in advance. If you arrive at Machu Picchu very early in the morning, it can still be possible to obtain one of the last tickets but don’t count on it!

Trek Machu Picchu Mountain or Huayna Picchu? - Explorandes

 

 

 

  • Intipunku

The Inca Trail ends after its final descent from the notch in the horizon called Intipunku (Sun Gate). Looking at the hill behind you as you enter the ruins, you can see both the trail and Intipunku. This hill, called Machu Picchu (Old Peak), gives the site its name. Access from the Machu Picchu ruins may be restricted. It takes about an hour to reach Intipunku. If you can spare at least a half-day for the round-trip, it may be possible to continue as far as Winay Wayna. Expect to pay S15 or more as an unofficial reduced-charge admission fee to the Inca Trail, and be sure to return before 3pm, which is when the checkpoint typically closes.

Inti Punku, La Puerta Interdimensional de los Inkas

 

 

 

  • Intihuatana

This Quechua word loosely translates as the ‘Hitching Post of the Sun’ and refers to the carved rock pillar, often mistakenly called a sundial, at the top of the Intihuatana hill. The Inca astronomers were able to predict the solstices using the angles of this pillar. Thus, they were able to claim control over the return of the lengthening summer days. Its exact use remains unclear, but its elegant simplicity and high craftwork make it a highlight.

Machu Picchu a Beautiful Place to Fill Up with Energy

 

 

 

  • Sacristy

Behind and connected to the Principal Temple lies this famous small building. It has many well-carved niches, perhaps used for the storage of ceremonial objects, as well as a carved stone bench. The Sacristy is especially known for the two rocks flanking its entrance; each is said to contain 32 angles, but it’s easy to come up with a different number whenever you count them.

The Sacristy -- Temple Complex -- and Intihuatana | Photo

 

 

 

  • Hut of the Caretaker of the Funerary Rock

An excellent viewpoint to take in the whole site. It’s one of a few buildings that has been restored with a thatched roof, making it a good shelter in the case of rain. The Inca Trail enters the city just below this hut. The carved rock behind the hut may have been used to mummify the nobility, hence the hut’s name.

Hut of the Caretaker of the Funerary Rock, Machu Picchu | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Principal Temple

The ‘temple’ derives its name from the massive solidity and perfection of its construction. The damage to the rear right corner is the result of the ground settling below this corner rather than any inherent weakness in the masonry itself.

Machu Picchu: Principal Temple on the Sacred Plaza – Yatrika

 

 

 

  • Temple of the Sun

Just above and to the left of the ceremonial baths is Machu Picchu’s only round building, a curved and tapering tower of exceptional stonework. This structure is off-limits and best viewed from above.

Sun Temple in Machu Picchu

 

 

 

  • Temple of the Three Windows

Important buildings flank the remaining three sides of the Sacred Plaza. The Temple of the Three Windows features huge trapezoidal windows that give the building its name.

File:19 Temple of the Three Windows Machu Picchu Peru 2538  (14977956488).jpg - Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

  • Inca Drawbridge

A scenic but level walk from the Hut of the Caretaker takes you right past the top of the terraces and out along a narrow, cliff-clinging trail to the Inca drawbridge. In under a half-hour’s walk, the trail gives you a good look at cloud-forest vegetation and an entirely different view of Machu Picchu. This walk is recommended, though you’ll have to be content with photographing the bridge from a distance, as someone crossed the bridge some years ago and tragically fell to their death.

Finding the Inca Drawbridge is one of the top things to do in Machu Picchu

 

 

 

  • Sacred Plaza

Climbing the stairs above the ceremonial baths, there is a flat area of jumbled rocks, once used as a quarry. Turn right at the top of the stairs and walk across the quarry on a short path leading to the four-sided Sacred Plaza. The far side contains a small viewing platform with a curved wall, which offers a view of the snowy Cordillera Vilcabamba in the far distance and the Río Urubamba below.

The Sacred Plaza - The Only Peru Guide

 

 

 

  • Ceremonial Baths

If you head straight into the ruins from the main entry gate, you pass through extensive terracing to a beautiful series of 16 connected ceremonial baths that cascade across the ruins, accompanied by a flight of stairs.

Ceremonial Baths, Peru 2019

 

 

 

  • Royal Tomb

Below the Temple of the Sun, this almost hidden, natural rock cave was carefully carved by Inca stonemasons. Its use is highly debated; though known as the Royal Tomb, no mummies were actually ever found here.

Travel to Peru

 

 

 

  • Temple of the Condor

This ‘temple’ is named for a carving of the head of a condor with rock outcrops as outstretched wings. It is considered the centerpiece of the Prison Group.

Temple of the Condor, Machu Picchu, Peru | Inca architecture, Picchu, Machu  picchu

 

 

 

  • Central Plaza

The plaza separates the ceremonial sector from the residential and industrial areas.

The Central Plaza at Machu Picchu | Photo

 

 

 

  • CHECK OUT THE PRISON GROUP AND THE TEMPLE OF THE CONDOR

On the east side of the site, you will find a fascinating jumble of cells both above and below the ground known as the Prison Group. Here, you can also see the Temple of the Condor, so named for the carving on the front, said to resemble the head of the giant bird.

Prison Group and Condor Temple | Photo

 

 

 

  • House of the High Priest

Little is known about these mysterious ruins, located opposite the Principal Temple.

The High Priest House »» Machu Picchu Audioguide 2020 ««

 

 

 

 

  • Visit the Temple of the Moon and the Great Cavern

If you manage to acquire a pass to climb Huayna Picchu, you also have the option of a longer hike around the back of the rock which takes you down to the seldom-visited Temple of the Moon and the Great Cavern. These are not among the most spectacular sights at Machu Picchu, but the walk will give you some respite from the oppressive crowds that always throng Peru’s most famous tourist attraction. The hike to the top of Huayna Picchu, down to the temple and the cave and then back up will require at least a few hours.  

Hiking the Gran Caverna Path at Huayna Picchu to the Temple of the Moon –  Aracari Travel

 

 

 

  • CLIMB CERRO MACHU PICCHU (MACHU PICCHU MOUNTAIN)

If you are not lucky enough to obtain a ticket for Huayna Picchu, another option is to climb Cerro Machu Picchu, or Machu Picchu Mountain. Lying on the other side of the ruins from Huayna Picchu, this is another of the very seldom-visited parts of the complex and you will find yourself looking down on the ruins from above with hardly anyone else around.

Difference between Machu Picchu Mountain and Huayna Picchu Mountain

 

 

 

  • VISIT THE AGRICULTURAL TERRACES

One of the great achievements of the Incas was their ability to adapt the mountainous terrain of the Andes for agriculture. You can walk along the terraces at Machu Picchu to appreciate the techniques they employed to make the land there suitable for cultivation. This is also a quieter spot where you can seek a moment’s respite from the oppressive crowds of the main site.

10 Most Impressive Ancient Inca Ruins | Sacred valley, Sacred valley peru,  Inca

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN MACHU PICCHU

 

  • Chullpi Machupicchu Restaurante 

Located along the tracks heading out of town, the kitchen at this rustic-chic restaurant turns out high-quality gourmet versions of Peruvian classics such as ají de gallina with quail eggs and causa with salmon tartare. The beautifully presented plates are on the small side, so it's best to order at least two courses, or try the tasting menu of 6, 10, or 15 courses.

ADDRESS : Av. Imperio de los Incas 140 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

CHULLPI RESTAURANT, Aguas Calientes - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone  Number - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Indio Feliz

An engaging French-Peruvian couple manage one of the best restaurants in Aguas Calientes whose eclectic decor—think maritime kitsch—is worth a visit on its own. Quiche Lorraine, ginger chicken, and spicy trucha a la macho (trout in hot pepper and wine sauce) are favorites on the Peruvian-French fusion à la carte menu, but the reasonably priced (S/77) prix-fixe menu is the way to go, offering all the same options plus heavenly homemade bread. It's as good a place for dining with friends as for an intimate dinner for two.

ADDRESS: Lloque Yupanqui s/n Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

El Indio Feliz Restaurant, Urubamba, Cuzco, Peru

 

 

 

  • Mapacho Craft Beer Restaurant

Go for the awesome craft beer but stay for the delicious food. Faster pub fare to full meals, such as lomo saltado (beef stir-fry), grilled chicken, and osso buco are served by friendly, professional staff in a casual setting along the river. The hardwood tables and chairs with the big screen TV make it seem more like a bar, but the food is as good as you might find in more upscale or trendy restaurants.

ADDRESS: Calle Imperio de los Incas 514 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

photo3.jpg - Picture of Mapacho Craft Beer Restaurant, Aguas Calientes -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Qunuq Restaurant

A must experience for foodies, the culinary offerings by Sumaq Hotel's restaurant can easily hold their own against anything the finest restaurants in Lima dish out, along with first-class setting and the utmost in professional yet warm service. The menu features a fusion of flavors giving European dishes like ravioli an Andean slant by stuffing them with aji de gallina (creamed chicken) as well as infusing traditional Peruvian fare with international flair. Reservations are a good idea, especially if you want to opt for the six course degustation menu (US$118 per person), a true gastronomic delight.

ADDRESS: Av. Hermanos Ayar Mz. 1, L-3 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

Qunuq Restaurant Machu Picchu Review

 

 

 

  • Bistrot Le P'tit Paris

Among the best restaurants in Aguas Calientes, this French-owned bistro offers a welcome change from Peruvian cuisine. The dining room and terrace are a bastion of peace and tranquillity, compared to restaurants on the main thoroughfare. Make sure you save room for the chocolate volcano dessert. They also offer a prix-fixe menu of S/58.

ADDRESS: Urb. Las Orquideas E-7 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

Bistrot le P'tit paris - Picture of Petit Paris Restaurant, Aguas Calientes  - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Incontri del Pueblo Viejo

With an owner-chef that hails directly from Italy, you can be sure to find authentic Mediterranean fare here as well as housemade pasta and Peruvian cuisine. The large open space has comfortable seating with a cozy fireplace, and the fair prices, especially on the Italian wines, make this a great value. For those who want something a bit simpler, delicious pizzas are also available. With luck, the dessert offerings will include the chef's fabulous tiramisu.

ADDRESS: Pachacutec s/n Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

INCONTRI DEL PUEBLO VIEJO, Aguas Calientes - Restaurant Reviews, Photos &  Phone Number - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • La Boulangerie de Paris

Paris's loss is Aguas Calientes' gain with the authentic French pastries served here, as well as coffee, sandwiches on house artisanal bread, quiche, and more. Eat in or take some of the delicious choices to go—the excellent boxed-lunch options are perfect for enjoying in Machu Picchu, and they open at 5 am so you can pick them up on the way to the bus.

ADDRESS: Jr. Sinchi Roca Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

Boulangerie de Paris, Machu Picchu - The Only Peru Guide

 

 

 

  • Palate Bistro

Although this casual café is part of the Supertramp backpacker hostel, the food is world-class with burgers, pizzas, and salads that are perfect for satiating an appetite forged by hoofing around Machu Picchu. Unlike many of the places lining the main streets in town, this pizza is worthy of the name, as are the burgers, both with a variety of tasty toppings available such as blue cheese and jamon serrano (dry-cured Spanish ham). If you come in the evening, be sure to check out the rooftop bar.

ADDRESS: Calle Chaska Tika 203 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

Palate Bistro Machupicchu - Picture of Palate Pizza & Burger Bar Machupicchu,  Aguas Calientes - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Toto's House

This long-standing tourist favorite has long tables set up in the center of its cavernous dining room to accommodate tour groups who come for the huge buffet lunch (S/72). Evenings are more sedate with grilled dishes like trucha andina (Andean trout), beef, or alpaca set to the entertainment of a folkloric music show. Grab one of the smaller tables with a river view by the window or out on the shaded front patio for some good people-watching.

ADDRESS: Av. Imperio de los Incas 600 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

Foto de Toto's House, Aguas Calientes: TOTOS HOUSE... - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Tree House Restaurant

Perched high above the streets of Aguas Calientes, this small, wood-paneled restaurant serves some of the best international cuisine in town. Fresh, local ingredients are the backbone for such dishes like quinua salad with goat cheese, gnocchi with lamb ragout, and Thai brochettes. The intimate candlelit dining room is small, so you may want to make dinner reservations. This is the best choice for a romantic dinner.

ADDRESS: Calle Huanacaure 180 Aguas Calientes, Cusco  Peru

The Tree House Restaurant Machu Picchu

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN MACHU PICCHU

In Machu Picchu Town there are basic stores where it will be able to buy memory cards, picture films, clothes and shoes, bottled water, snack food, liquors, and souvenirs. Drug Stores: Basic medicaments, if you need special medecines is recommendable to buy them before the trip. There are banks offices and ATM machines. Some stores accept US dollars and Euros. The markets at Machu Picchu offer shoppers a wide range of interesting articles and souvenirs to pick from. They are stocked with attractive local products and handicrafts like alpaca sweaters, scarves, local arts and crafts. Close to train station is the Indian Market, streetsite shop, where you can find many places to shop from modern handicrafts inspired in pre-Columbian Andean art, alpaca sweaters and scarved, woolens, textiles, pottery, jewelry and the perfect souvenir.

 

 

  • Arte Joyeria Rumiwasi

Arte Joyeria Rumiwasi will keep you glued to it as the jewelry items offered at this place are amazing. You will be forced to look at the pieces again and again as they are quite mesmerizing. There are very few shopping destinations in the city and you can locate Arte Joyeria Rumiwasi close to the railway station. There are some interesting jewelry pieces that can be bought under a decent price range. The items do reflect a touch of Peruvian designs that are very interesting. You need to make sure that you visit this place in the day time as the evening hours the market is quite crowded. For people who are new to the city, public transport will be of great help to reach this place.

Arte Joyeria Rumiwasi (Aguas Calientes) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE  You Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Pisac Market

Pisac Market is one of the major shopping regions of Machu Picchu. You won’t find a better place than Pisac Market when it comes to bargaining. You can explore a good collection of clothing and other accessories at this destination under a decent price. There are numerous merchants present in Pisac Market that offer interesting goods that are loved by the tourists. This market is always crowded, so make sure you are alert whenever you visit this place. Pisac Market can also be explored in order to savor local dishes that can be enjoyed from the outlets present in the area. You can take public transport in order to reach this place.

the-best-markets-in-cuzco2.jpg 600 × 400 pixels | Machu picchu peru, Peru,  Cusco peru

 

 

 

  • San Pedro Market

San Pedro Market is divided into four sections that offer fresh meat, fruit/vegetables and other knick-knacks. You can access interesting varieties of vegetables such as potatoes that are available in 3500 types. This is a typical Peru market which has a vibrant atmosphere. You can spot locals as well as tourists enjoying their time shopping delicious food items. The meat offered at San Pedro Market is fresh and is preferred by the city’s population. You can also check out different food stalls in this market that offer relishing local delicacies. You need to carry a city map in order to reach this destination. If you are travelling alone, then do take care of your belongings.

CUSCO: Take A Walk Around San Pedro Market - Affordable Peru Tours

 

 

 

  • Indian Market

Indian Market should be visited if you are in search for handicraft goods. This place is managed in an authentic way that will surely impress you. You can check out goods such as scarves, sweaters and other accessories easily in this market. The prices are very attractive that makes Indian Market frequently visited by the local crowd. If you wish to explore classic souvenirs from this city, then Indian Market will help you in accessing some wonderful items. Tourists love this place since it is easily accessible from the station. There are modern handicraft items as well that are quite alluring. You need to visit the Indian Market so as to learn more about the shopping culture in Peru.

Indian Market in Lima, Peru ~ T.J. | Travel photos, Photo, Peru

 

 

 

  • Artesanias

Artesanias is one of the frequently visited stores in the city. This outlet is known for its genuine designs of artistic items. You can explore a number of handicrafts that are quite alluring. The shop might not look so grand, but the products offered at Artesanias are very impressive. People from different parts of the city visit this store to check out lovely goods for home décor. The craftsmanship is very much praised by the tourists to visit Artesanias. You need to carry a city map in order to reach this shop that is present in the main market of Machu Picchu. You can check out eateries in the vicinity that offer amazing delicacies.

Mercado de Artesanias (Aguas Calientes) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE  You Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

PERJANTAI, 09. LOKAKUUTA 2020
ARUBA - ISLAND COUNTRY

Aruba Archives | Earth Trekkers

Aruba is an island and a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands lying in the southern Caribbean Sea, located about 29 kilometres north of the Venezuelan peninsula of Paraguaná and 80 kilometres northwest of Curaçao.

North Americans fleeing winter make Aruba the most touristed island in the southern Caribbean. The draws are obvious: miles of glorious white-sand beach, plenty of all-inclusive resorts, and a cute, compact capital, Oranjestad, which is well suited to the short strolls favored by cruise-ship passengers. It’s all about sun, fun and spending money.

Venture away from the resorts and you're in for a real treat. At the island’s extreme ends are rugged, windswept vistas and uncrowded beaches – perfect for hiking and horseback riding. Crystal-clear waters are bursting with sea life and shipwrecks (and an airplane wreck or two), providing incredible opportunities for snorkeling and diving. And nonstop breezes create near-perfect conditions for windsurfing and kiteboarding.

So whether you're longing to lounge on a beach or delve into the great outdoors, Aruba has you covered. One happy island, indeed!

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT ARUBA

The best time to visit Aruba is from April to August – a huge window of time when the island's high prices take a holiday. And since the island sits well outside the hurricane belt, there's very little threat of tropical storms at this time. January to March features pleasant weather, but the room prices can soar. You can also find discounts if you travel in the early fall. Whenever you visit, keep in mind Aruba is prone to high trade winds, which makes for a great experience for windsurfers.

January-March 

The bad news: You could pay as much as $900 a night to stay in some of the ritziest hotels along Palm and Eagle Beach. The good news: If you begin your search several months to a full year in advance, you could find something a lot more reasonable. Temperatures are steady, with lows in the mid-70s and highs in the mid-80s, and very little rain.

April-August 

This offseason in Aruba is a great time to get a room deal. Plus, Aruba's southernly position in the Caribbean Sea puts it outside the hurricane belt. Temperatures are slightly higher (it could reach the 90s by the peak of summer), but the dry, desert climate and frequent high winds will keep the stickiness to a minimum.

September-December

If you're planning a visit for this time of year, try to get a room during the first few months before winter travelers arrive. September is also the month where Aruba's notorious trade winds die down. These months see the most precipitation of the year, but most days are rainfall-free.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT ARUBA

Aruba is the happy Dutch Caribbean island in the Southern Caribbean. Served by a number of regional and international carriers, Aruba enjoys over 100 direct flights every week from 14 North American gateways and one-stop connections from almost every city in the U.S. and Canada. In just four hours from New York City and two and a half from Miami, you can be at Aruba’s airport, breathing in the tropical air as you breeze through immigration and customs. Aruba also enjoys international flights from European and Latin American countries, including Holland, the United Kingdom, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Argentina, and Brazil. American, Canadian, Caribbean, European and most South American citizens don’t require visas to enter Aruba.

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND ARUBA

The best way to get around Aruba is by bus. Although, many visitors stay close to their resorts and respective beaches along the northwest coast. Fixed-rate Aruban cabs are another hassle-free way of getting around. Renting a car is a good choice for exploring the island's east coast, while renting an all-terrain vehicle for off-roading in the Arikok National Park is another option for the more adventurous crowd. Aruba is also a popular port of call for cruise ships. Ships dock at the Port Authority in Oranjestad. From there you'll find car rental agencies and taxis ready to take you to your destination.

Public Transportation - The island's Arubus system is reliable and affordable with buses running every 15 minutes from 5:45 a.m. until 6 p.m. and every 40 minutes until 11:30 p.m. The central bus station sits in downtown Oranjestad, adjacent to the cruise ship terminal. Retour cards good for two trips cost 8.75 Aruban florin (or about $5). Day passes, which cover unlimited travel on all the routes, cost 17.50 florin (less than $10). The bus covers the major resort areas and downtown, as well as Baby Beach.

If you'll be staying in the downtown area, you can use the hop-on, hop-off trolley, which passes through Main Street and the newly renovated pedestrian mall of downtown from the cruise ship terminal. The tram, which is free to ride, makes six stops at monuments and museums along the way.

Taxi - You'll find the fixed-rate taxis are a stress-free means of getting to and from most sites, especially if you intend to spend most of your vacation around your hotel. You can have your hotel concierge call a taxi, you can grab one easily at the airport or sometimes they can be flagged down off the street (look for cars with a "TX" in the license plate), though it's best to call ahead. Before you get in, ask the driver what the fare will be to get to your destination. You can also look at his or her fare chart while you ride. Taxis here at not metered, so it's best to agree on the fare before starting your trip.

Car - Having a car can be handy for treks to Arikok National Park or out of reach sites like Baby Beach or the Donkey Sanctuary Aruba. You can rent a car near the cruise terminal or the airport and daily rates can range anywhere from $40 to $90. If you're splurging already, consider upgrading your compact car for a four-wheel-drive or all-terrain vehicle. Aruba's rugged east coast landscape will be much easier to handle if you're in a vehicle with some oomph. Keep in mind: speed limits and distances are posted in kilometers. An international driving permit is not needed.

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN ARUBA

 

  • Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

The Tradewinds Club offers an exclusive experience at the Aruba Marriott Resort, with elite adult-only privileges & impeccable service throughout stay. This beachfront resort faces Palm Beach and is a short walk from Tierra Del Sol Golf and Country Club. It offers the 24-hour Stellaris Casino, 7 dining options, an outdoor swimming pool and spa. WiFi access is free in the common areas but paid in the rooms. This Resort holds a Four Diamond Award. The rooms at the Aruba Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino have a balcony, a flat-screen TV with in-room movies and a coffee maker. The en suite bathroom offers a double vanity sink, a hairdryer and bathrobes. Guests can enjoy steaks and classic desserts at Ruth’s Chris Steak House. The Aruba Marriott also features international cuisine at La Vista, which offers panoramic ocean views. You can also enjoy a romantic dinner at "Atardi" perfectly set to enjoy sunsets. This Aruba Marriott also features an outdoor swimming pool and hot tub. A car rental desk and a gift shop are located on site.

Meetings and events at Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, Palm  Beach, AW

 

 

 

  • Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort

Situated opposite Aruba's beautiful Eagle Beach, this hotel offers stunning Dutch colonial architecture, relaxing facilities and spacious studios and suites with fully equipped kitchens or kitchenettes. Free WiFi, parking and welcome drink are available on site. Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort features an outdoor pool and a children's pool. Guests can take advantage of the available snorkel equipment or relax in a complimentary lounge chair on the poolside or beach. Mango's restaurant offers an extensive buffet breakfast with live cooking, and international cuisine for dinner. You can enjoy cocktails, fresh fish and grilled steak on the beach at the Passions Beach Bar & Lounge. Free snacks at Manager's Cocktail party every Thursday. Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort has achieved the Master Level of Certification from EarthCheck and also the Golden Travel Life Award.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Bucuti & Tara Boutique Beach Resort - Adult Only

Set on the white sands of Eagle Beach, this adults-only (18+) boutique resort features an ocean-front restaurant with spectacular views and healthy dining options. Free breakfast and free WiFi are provided. The rooms and suites at Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort Aruba offer style and comfort, with cable TV, air dehumidifiers, a microwave and a fridge. The SandBar has a happy hour every evening, twice a week there is a free Movie Night on the beach, and Carte Blanche restaurant boasts gourmet-style cuisine at a chef's table. Romantic dining on the beach in a private palapa can be reserved. An air-conditioned fitness center has a beautiful view of the courtyard garden and nearby beach. An outdoor pool and concierge services are also available. Guests can relax with a massage or treatment in the Purun Spa. The Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort is near to the Alhambra Casino and shopping centre. Reina Beatrix International Airport is 8 km away.

BUCUTI & TARA BEACH RESORT ARUBA - UPDATED 2020 Reviews & Price Comparison  (Palm - Eagle Beach) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Eagle Aruba Resort & Casino

This complex is set 500 m from Eagle Beach and 2 km from Divi Village Golf Course. It features an on-site casino, spa services and 2 swimming pools. Free WiFi is available in public areas. The suites offer modern décor with wooden furniture and tiled floors. All accommodations have a seating area, TV and a balcony and the kitchens have kitchenware, oven, fridge and stove. The private bathrooms come with bath or shower. Double Down Sports Bar & Grill serves steak dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner; The Bikini's pool bar and grill also offers happy hours daily and live music. There is also a cafeteria, an ice-cream store and an on-site supermarket. Snorkelling, scuba diving, sailing, horseback riding are water activities that can be arranged by Eagle Aruba Resort & Casino. Jeep Safari, town centre walking and shopping are another option for guests. This resort is 10 minutes’ drive from Oranjestad Main Square and a 20-minute drive from Queen Beatrix International Airport.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • All Inclusive Holiday Inn Resort Aruba - Beach Resort & Casino

Offering a year-round outdoor pool, children's playground and terrace, Holiday Inn Resort Aruba - Beach Resort & Casino All Inclusive is located in Palm Beach, 3.5 km from Eagle Beach. The resort has a spa centre and hot tub, and guests can enjoy all meals and drinks for free. Each room includes a flat-screen TV. Certain rooms have a seating area to relax in after a busy day. Rooms come with a private bathroom. Extras include free toiletries and a hair dryer. There is a 24-hour front desk, a cash machine and hairdresser's at the property. This resort has water sports facilities and free use of bicycles and car hire are available. Guests can enjoy various activities in the surroundings, including golfing, snorkeling and windsurfing. Queen Beatrix Airport is 9 km from the property.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino

Featuring a 40-acre private island and beaches, this Oranjestad resort offers both adults-only and family lodging. A full-service spa, casino and choice of fine restaurants are available. Free WiFi is included. Satellite TV and a coffee maker are found in each bright room of the Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino. Bathrooms provide plush robes and slippers. A large fitness centre and a jogging trail offered to guests at Renaissance Aruba. Three beautiful pools, scuba diving and kayaking are also offered. Offering 8 dining options total, Aquarius and the Papagayo Bar & Grill serve fine international cuisine. Guests can also enjoy L.G. Smith’s Steak & Chop House or Midnight Grill and BLUE. Fresco, Sole and Mangrove Beach Bar are available for additional dining options. Breakfast and all inclusive can be offered for an extra fee. The Reina Beatrix International Airport is 5 minutes from the Renaissance Resort and Casino. This waterfront property is located in Oranjestad's town centre.

Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino | Beach Hotels & Resorts

 

 

 

  • Barceló Aruba - All Inclusive

Barceló Aruba - All Inclusive offers beachfront accommodation in Aruba, featuring 7 restaurants, 24 hrs gym, spa and kid´s club. The casino has 5 tables including American Roulette, Black Jack and Three Card Poker. There are 120 slot machines and a full service bar. Guests can also enjoy watching sporting events in high definition. The casino allows smoking and has free WiFi in the bar lounge. Barceló Aruba - All Inclusive boasts daily activities, numerous water sports and nightly live entertainment. Guests can enjoy the Lobby Lounge with a piano and pool tables. Barceló Aruba - All Inclusive is ideally located on the Caribbean Sea, providing hours of fun and excitement for the whole family. Guests can also enjoy 6 bars and a beauty salon.

Hotel Barceló Aruba, Palm Beach - trivago.com.ph

 

 

 

  • Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort & Casino

Offering an unrivaled oceanfront location, direct beach access, a full-service spa, exciting casino action and gourmet dining, this Palm Beach, Aruba resort provides everything needed for an unforgettable stay. The newly enhanced rooms at Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa and Casino feature designs inspired by the teal blues of Aruba and welcoming furnishings that include 65” flat-screen TV, Hyatt Grand Beds and roomy bathrooms that feature stone and quartz. An endless variety of recreational activities can be found moments from the Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort and Casino, including deep-sea fishing, sailing and snorkeling. The resort also has two pools, the outdoor pool complex which is 8,000 sq. ft. with two story waterslide and a 4,951 sq. ft. adults-only pool. Guests at the Aruba Hyatt Regency can also relax with a massage or facial from the on-site spa, enjoy a yoga class or browse for gifts in the on-site shops. The resort's casino features live entertainment along with popular slot machines and card games. The 5,200 square-foot ZoiA Spa – meaning balance in Papiamento – houses 8 treatment rooms, many of which will offer an indoor and outdoor experience, and an extensive spa menu featuring luxurious treatments with locally grown aloe vera. You can enjoya cool Biba Dushi cocktail at Alfresco.

Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa & Casino Reopens |  www.themeetingmagazines.com

 

 

 

  • Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino

Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino offers accommodation in Palm Beach. The resort has a spa centre and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. The rooms come with a TV and a private bathroom, while a balcony or patio are featured in certain rooms. For your comfort, you will find free toiletries and a hair dryer. Bathrobes are available upon request. Guests can enjoy fresh seafood in the Sunset Grille Restaurant, then relax with an international cocktail at Mira Solo Bar. This resort has water sports facilities and car hire is available. A number of activities is offered in the area, such as golfing and diving. Eagle Beach is 2.9 km from Hilton Aruba, while Oranjestad is 6 km away. The nearest airport is Queen Beatrix Airport, 8 km from Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino.

Meetings and events at Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino, Palm Beach,  AW

 

 

 

  • Marriott's Aruba Surf Club

This resort is located on the beach in Palm Beach, Aruba. The resort offers an on-site casino, a spacious outdoor pool with a lazy river and a restaurant. At Marriott's Aruba Surf Club you can choose between villas and bedrooms. Every spacious villa is equipped with a full kitchen, washer and dryer. The bedrooms include a mini-fridge, microwave and cutlery. Guest rooms and villas have a furnished balcony. Cable TVs with DVD players are included. Recreational facilities at the Marriott's Aruba Surf Club include a whirlpool spa and fully equipped gym with cardio and weight training equipment. Captain's Galley serves American cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Seaworthy's Pool Bar is open for lunch and serves drinks in the afternoon.

Best Price on Marriott's Aruba Surf Club in Noord + Reviews!

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN ARUBA

North of Venezuela, the island of Aruba is famous for its stunning blonde beaches, wind-sculpted desert landscapes, and some of the best wreck diving in the Caribbean. Aruba is a relatively dry island with consistently fine weather. Its location in the far south of the Caribbean puts it out of reach of most hurricanes, so sun seekers can enjoy the island's outdoor attractions and water sports at any time of year.

Aruba's quaint capital, Oranjestad, is a charming cruise ship port packed with attractions and family-friendly things to do. Stroll among the brightly-hued Dutch colonial buildings; browse the galleries, shops, and museums; or tour the Aruba Aloe museum and factory or The Butterfly Farm.

Scattered around the island are many beautiful beaches. The north coast lures swimmers with its calm waters and seemingly endless sweep of glittering sand, while the rough and wave-battered east coast offers dramatic vistas and dangerous surf.

Adventures abound on this rugged island. Away from the resort strip, you can slide down towering sand dunes, ride the swells on a kiteboard, discover unique rock formations, swim in natural pools, fish for wahoo and tuna, and explore some of the island's rocky cacti-cloaked terrain in four-wheel-drive vehicles or on horseback. In late January and early February, Carnival ignites the island with dances, parades, contests, and other festivities.

Discover the best places to visit on this popular Caribbean island. Here are the list of Turisti- Info to the top tourist attractions in Aruba.

 

 

  • Beaches in Aruba

Aruba offers an abundance of dazzling beaches. The northwest coast of Aruba, from Druif Beach to Eagle Beach, and Palm Beach to Malmok, is an 11-kilometer sweep of uninterrupted white sand and clear jade waters. Eagle Beach and Palm Beach are favorites. Near the California Lighthouse, Malmok Beach and secluded Arashi Beach are great for swimming and snorkeling. On the windward east coast, Bachelor's BeachBoca GrandiBoca PrinsDos Playa, Black Stone Beach, and Boca Andicuri have stronger currents and larger waves. Although they are not recommended for swimming, windsurfers and kitesurfers can tackle the swells. The beaches in the southeast are less populated. Locals' favorite, Baby Beach is great for inexperienced swimmers, with its shallow basin and calm waters.

Aruba - Travel Guide and Latest News | TravelPulse

 

 

 

  • Oranjestad

Oranjestad, Aruba is a charming city and the capital and cruise port of this tiny island. The most striking feature is the Dutch colonial architecture. Pastel-hued buildings with a Spanish and Caribbean twist jostle along the tidy streets, and you'll find many shops, restaurants, museums, galleries, and entertainment options. Overall the city is simply a fun place to walk around and soak up the atmosphere. Well-maintained Wilhelmina Park, on the waterfront, is one of the city's main attractions, particularly in June, September, and October when many of the plants are in bloom. Look for iguanas along the water's edge. A short walk from here, you can explore the small Aruba Historical Museum, with artifacts related to the entire history of the island. It's housed in the King Willem III Tower at Fort Zoutman, which was built as a lighthouse and pirate-spotting vantage point. Other Oranjestad highlights include the Aruba Aloe Factory, where you can learn about the medicinal qualities of this wonder plant and purchase skin-soothing souvenirs, and The Butterfly Farm, a highlight for children and avid photographers. If you're a shopper, Renaissance Shopping Mall features high-end stores like Chanel, Gucci, and Cartier. For fantastic views over the city, hike to the top of the 165-meter-tall volcanic rock formation, Hooiberg. And if you prefer a more relaxing sightseeing experience, a great way to get a feel for the city is to hop aboard the bright red Aruba Streetcar, a free open-air bus that runs between the top attractions in the city.

Oranjestad, Aruba, Kingdom of the Netherlands | Oranjestad i… | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Arikok National Park - San Fuego 71, Santa Cruz

Outdoor enthusiasts love exploring rugged Arikok National Park. Covering almost 20 percent of the island, the park features cacti-covered landscapes, caves, sand dunes, and unique rock formations. Large boulders adorned with Indian paintings make up the odd rock formation known as Ayó, and the Casibari Boulders, weathered by trade winds, are strewn amid dry scrub. You can walk the trails and steps ascending through the rocks for great views and photo opportunities. Arikok National Park also encompasses the wave-thrashed shores of the island's north coast. Wave erosion carved the Natural Bridge at Anicouri, which collapsed in 2005, but you can still see a smaller natural bridge here, and it's a great spot for a picnic. On the picturesque waterfront, the old stone walls of the Bushiribana Gold Mill Ruins are the remains of a 19th-century gold smelter. Parakeets, goats, lizards, snakes, and iguanas are just some of the creatures found in the park. Since the roads can be rugged, a 4WD vehicle is recommended- some sites can't be accessed via 2WD vehicles-but you can also explore on horseback and hike the many trails. To really enjoy all the park's top sites, a full day is recommended here.

 

 

 

  • Boca Prins

In Arikok National Park, near the Fontein Cave and Blue Lagoon, Boca Prins is a dramatic stretch of coast backed by massive sand dunes. Trade winds sculpt these shifting sands, and adventure seekers love to slide from their peaks. At the narrow sliver of beach, crashing surf and soaring limestone cliffs create dramatic coastal vistas. Swimming here is too dangerous, but it's a great spot for a picnic, and you can descend the steps to the shore, sink your feet in the sand, and feel the spray of the salty surf on your face. Four-wheel drive vehicles are recommended.

 

 

 

  • California Lighthouse & California Dunes - Northern Aruba, Palm - Eagle Beach

At the northern tip of the island, the California Lighthouse stars on many Aruban postcards and tourist brochures. It was named for the S.S. California, which sunk off the coast here. The surrounding area is rugged and beautiful, with sand dunes called the California Dunes, cacti, and even some grazing goats. Although the lighthouse is closed to the public, it's a great spot to compare the calm waters of the western shore with the rough waves of the east. Sunset is a beautiful time to visit the lighthouse and enjoy panoramic island views. Many guests linger for dinner at the nearby restaurant.

13 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Aruba | PlanetWare

 

 

 

  • Aruba's Dive Sites

Aruba is famous for its excellent wreck diving, catering to divers of all levels. Sunken vessels range from tugboats to cargo ships, and even plane fuselages. Lying between Arashi and Malmok, the Antilia is the Caribbean's largest wreck and one of Aruba's most popular dives. Snorkelers can also explore the shallow-water sections of this wreck. Other popular wrecks include the 76-meter former concrete freighter Jane Sea and the oil tanker Pedernales. Coral reefs lace the island's leeward shore. Some of the best reef dive sites include Skalahein ReefPlonco Reef; and Mas Bango Reef, which is also excellent for snorkeling. Those who prefer to stay dry can board the Atlantis Submarine to view marine life, coral formations, and shipwrecks.

Best Scuba Diving Aruba | Joe's Scuba Shack

 

 

 

  • Natural Pool

The Natural Pool is just that, a protected swimming hole filled by waves crashing over the slick rocks. You can swim and snorkel here, although the area is really not that big. The pool lies down a rugged road and is best reached by 4WD vehicle. You can navigate the area yourself, but the road is not well marked. The best way to visit this attraction is on an organized 4WD tour, like the four-hour Natural Pool and Indian Cave Jeep Safari or the Aruba ATV Tour with a Natural Pool Swim. You can also visit the pool on horseback tours.

ATV & UTV - 8 Natural Wonders Tour - Action Tours Aruba - Adventures &  Activities

 

 

 

  • The Butterfly Farm - J.E. Irausquin Blvd, Noord, Aruba

Children, photographers, and anyone who loves nature will enjoy The Butterfly Farm near Palm Beach. During your visit, you can walk through an enclosure with lush, tropical gardens and witness these winged beauties fluttering around you. Guided tours help you identify the different species, and you'll also learn about butterfly habitats and the life cycles of these delicate creatures. If you arrive early enough, you may even see butterflies emerging from their chrysalis. This is one of the most unique things to do in Aruba and a wonderful way to capture colorful close-up photos. Best of all, your admission allows you to return as many times as you like during your stay.

Top Things to Do in Oranjestad, Caribbean - Oranjestad Attractions

 

 

 

  • Aruba Aloe Factory & Museum Tour - Pitastraat 115, Aruba

One of the top free things to do in Aruba is take a tour at the Aruba Aloe Museum, Factory, and Store. During this fascinating tour, you'll learn everything you ever wanted to know about aloe plants. Watch a short film about the history of aloe production in Aruba, witness your guide "filet" an aloe leaf to extract the glutinous flesh, see the plants growing in the sandy soil, and learn about aloe's health benefits. The tour also includes a walk through the factory, where you can see how the products are made and packaged. After your tour, you can purchase some aloe products in the gift shop to soothe your sunburn or take home as souvenirs. Tours depart every 15 minutes, and self-guided tours are also possible.

Aruba: Aruba Aloe Factory and Museum - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Philip's Animal Garden - Alto Vista 116, Noord

The non-profit Philip's Animal Garden is a sanctuary and rehabilitation center for more than 52 species of animals. Animal-lover Philip Merryweather poured his passion for exotic animals into this popular tourist attraction, which runs educational and interactive tours. Favorite residents include snakes, kangaroos, monkeys, emus, ostriches, and ocelots, but you'll also find farmyard animals such as goats, pigs, horses, and donkeys. This is a fantastic place to bring the kids. The friendly staff are happy to answer questions and share the stories of each resident, and you can touch and feed some of the creatures. A small donation grants you entrance as well as a bag of carrots to feed the animals. All funds go towards care of the animals. Animal lovers might also enjoy a quick visit to Donkey Sanctuary Aruba, where you can pet and feed these rescued animals. Entry is by donation. And if you want even more critter-based fun, head to the Aruba Ostrich Farm for a quick tour and a chance to learn more about these flightless, feathered beasts.

Philips Animal Garden | Caribbean STAY Six Aruba Sights Kids Will Love – Punto di Oro Apartments

 

 

 

  • Alto Vista Chapel - Alto Vista, Noord

The small Alto Vista Chapel is one of Aruba's cherished landmarks. Often called the "Pilgrim's Church," Alto Vista was originally built in 1750 by the Spanish missionary, Domingo Antonio Silvestre. The current structure was built in 1954 on the same site, and it's one of the island's most famous landmarks. Alto Vista means "highest view" in Spanish and, true to its name, the church sits high on a hill with beautiful views over the island's north shore. The Stations of the Cross mark the road leading to the chapel. While you're here, walk behind the chapel to the Peace Labyrinth, where you can wander the circular path in quiet contemplation.

a picture of the alto vista chapel in aruba | Aruba, Tourist attraction,  California lighthouse

 

 

 

  • Rancho Daimari Horseback Tour

On the remote northeast coast of Aruba, Rancho Daimari offers scenic horseback tours to sites such as the Natural PoolArikok National ParkAndicuri Beach, and the sand dunes. The ranch overlooks Daimari beach on the site of a former coconut plantation, originally established in the 17th century. Guests of all riding abilities are welcome, although the terrain can be rocky and steep. You'll also have an opportunity to ride the horses on the beach. Tours are usually about three hours and include pickup and drop-off from your hotel.

Arikok National Park Horseback Riding Tours - Rancho Daimari

 

 

 

  • De Palm Island

A five-minute ferry ride from the mainland, De Palm Island is a small private splotch of sand, packed with activities. For all-inclusive rates, guests can swim, snorkel, or zip around on banana boats, while land-based activities include beach volleyball, basketball, bingo, salsa lessons, and card games. Families with young children will enjoy the colorful water park with spiral waterslides and splash pools. For additional fees, guests can try the Sea Trek underwater helmet walkSNUBA, or indulge in massages.

De Palm Island own Transportation 2020 - Aruba

 

 

 

  • Donkey Sanctuary

Located on the outskirts of Oranjestad in Santa Cruz, the Aruban Donkey Sunctuary is definitely worth the trek. The sanctuary is run by a non-profit organization dedicated to saving the island’s population of donkeys, which used to be a main source of transportation. Purchase a feed cup at the sanctuary or bring your own supply of carrots and apples.

Donkey Sanctuary | Aruba | Michelle Callahan | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Driftwood Fishing Charters

One of the most popular watersports in Aruba is deep-sea fishing. For tourists who want to give the sport a try, check out one of the outings offered by Driftwood Fishing Charters. Groups of up to six people can board the Driftwood I for a morning or afternoon of deep-sea fishing. Driftwood provides all of the equipment and bait. Potential catches include barracuda, tuna, sailfish, and even sharks. If you decide on an afternoon charter, head over to the Driftwood Restaurant afterwards for some of the freshest seafood in all of Oranjestad.

Deep Sea fishing with Doddy & Arjean, 6 people, 5 nice fish!! - Review of  Living Easy Sport Fishing Charters Aruba, Oranjestad, Aruba - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Hooiberg

Standing 165 meters above sea level on the outskirts of Oranjestad, Hooiberg (meaning ‘haystack’) is a volcanic formation that dominates the Aruban horizon. While not the highest point on the island, Hooiberg is a popular destination for hikers. The easiest way to access the top of this famous hill is to climb up the 587 steps built by Eduardo Tromp in 1951. At the top, the spectacular Aruban landscape extends outwards in every direction. On a clear day, Venezuela is visible to the south.

A View of Hooiberg Peak, Aruba

 

 

 

  • Bushiribana Ruins

Originally constructed by the Aruba Island Gold-Mining Company Ltd. in 1872 to process the gold being mined at Seroe Plat, the smelting works at Bushiribana was only in use for 10 years until it was abandoned and fell into ruin. It is only due to its impeccably solid construction that a discernable percentage of the gold processing mill still remains. While the Bushiribana smelting works probably wasn’t very appealing its heyday, the ruins left behind offer a spectacular backdrop for any outdoor activity taking place in its vicinity. A favorite way to capture a photo of the ocean from this site is to take it through one of the ruins’ still-intact windows.

Bushiribana Gold Mill Ruins | Nights Publications

 

 

 

  • Fort Zoutman and King Wilhelm III Tower

Built by Dutch settlers in 1796 to protect themselves from marauding pirates and foreign enemies, Fort Zoutman is both the oldest remnant of the original Dutch settlement on Aruba, as well as the island’s oldest standing structure. The King Wilhelm III Tower was added in 1868 and served as Aruba’s official clock tower and lighthouse. After Aruba no longer needed a fort to defend itself, Fort Zoutman housed an array of civic organizations for more than 100 years, including a library, government offices and a prison. Today, the fort contains Aruba’s Historical Museum, which showcases artefacts from the island’s indigenous past through to the present day.

Fort Zoutman and Willem III Clock Tower - Oranjestad, Aruba

 

 

 

  • Lourdes Grotto

Located on the south-east coast of Aruba near the town of San Nicolas in Seroe Preto, the Grot di Lourdes (Lourdes Grotto) is a holy site dedicated to the memorial of the Virgin Mary’s appearance in Lourdes, France. In 1858, a peasant girl named Bernadette Soubirous claimed to have seen Mary many times near the town of Lourdes, which is now the second most popular tourist attraction in France behind Paris. 100 years after the sighting, a priest named Erkamp created the Aruban memorial, which consists of a statue of the Virgin weighing 700 kilograms. The grotto’s natural beauty is only complimented by the ring of colorful flowers routinely placed around the statue.

Lourdes Grotto Pictures: View Photos & Images of Lourdes Grotto

 

 

 

  • Plaza Daniel Leo

Aruba’s capital city of Oranjestad, named after Huis van Oranje, the royal family that ruled during the colonization of the island, is the perfect place to spend an afternoon shopping, whether you’re looking for luxury brands or local crafts. However, be sure not to miss the Plaza Daniel Leo, named after a local politician, that’s situated in front of the Renaissance Mall. Not only is this plaza home to a plethora of boutiques, it also boasts some of the best examples of stunning multicolored Dutch colonial buildings in the region.

Oranjestad, Aruba: Plaza Daniel Leo | Oranjestad, Southern caribbean, Aruba  vacations

 

 

 

  • Fontein Cave

For a peek into Aruba’s ancient past, look no further than the Fontein Cave. Located on the island’s north-east coast in Airkok National Park, this cave is famous for the Arawak Indian paintings still visible on its ceilings and walls. The grotto-like cavern offers the indigenous artwork an incredible backdrop that certainly won’t disappoint adventurers who wander inside. There is no substitute for this attraction as it is the only cave on the island with such paintings. That said, some other interesting caves to explore include the Guadirikiri Cave and Huliba Cave.

Fontein Cave - Picture of Aruba, Caribbean - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN ARUBA

Located on the southern coast of the Caribbean island of Aruba, Oranjestad serves as the island’s capital and largest municipality. Between tours, long days relaxing at the beach, and shopping for souvenirs, visitors need to eat. Luckily, Oranjestad is home to some of the best restaurants on the island, with many serving a wide variety of international cuisines. 

 

 

  • 7 West Bar & Restaurant

Situated just off of Oranjestad Harbor, 7 West Bar & Restaurant is the ideal place to relax and take in stunning views of boats bobbing in the calm Caribbean waters. Originally named for their location on west 7th street (7 Weststraat), this restaurant is mainly known for its very reasonably priced gourmet-inspired menu, which is sometimes difficult to find in a resort town like Oranjestad. Stop by for lunch and order one of 7 West’s inspired platters which usually feature some kind of fresh fish.

7 West — Aruba Restaurants

 

 

 

  • Café the Plaza

Opened 23 years ago by Dutch transplants Hans Nooter and Harry Koeman, Café the Plaza has been a favorite for quite some time. Situated in Oranjestad’s Renaissance Marketplace, this café is the ideal place to grab lunch or dinner after a couple hours of shopping. What’s truly special about Café the Plaza is their flexibility. The restaurant serves food all day, from pancakes in the morning, to strong drinks at night, while you can’t go wrong stopping by for a sandwich at lunchtime either.

Image may contain: food

 

 

 

  • CILO City Lounge

Like Café the Plaza, CILO City Lounge is conveniently located in the Renaissance Marketplace and is open all day for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Try one of CILO’s city-inspired breakfasts, such as the New York, featuring two scrambled eggs, bacon, sausages, fruit, yogurt and toast with butter and jelly, while enjoying a view of the bustling Oranjestad marina from the restaurant’s terrace. In the evening, come with friends and relax with half-off drinks during happy hour.

CILO at the Seaport | The Bent Page

 

 

 

  • Cuba's Cookin'

For a taste of Cuba in the heart of Oranjestad, head over to Cuba’s Cookin’ in the Renaissance Marketplace. Owner Douglass Markus has infused the space with Cuban charm through the dishes, music and art that he has accumulated from many trips to the Big Island over the past 15 years, so much so that it evokes a ‘Havana resto bar circa 1959’ feel. Try one of the restaurant’s traditional Cuban dishes, such as pollo con aceitunas (chicken and olives), or ropa vieja (braised skirt steak), and wash it all down one of their ‘world famous’ mojitos.

Cuba's Cookin' - Oranjestad Restaurant - HappyCow

 

 

 

  • The West Deck

Poking its way out into the waters of the Caribbean Sea towards the north end of Aruba’s windward side, The West Deck is a lively, family-friendly drinks and dining spot that comes highly-recommended. The menu offers up a medley of uber-fresh fish cuts doused in a range of different regional sauces (think mahi mahi in black beans, or calimari with a twist of chilli), while the half al fresco design makes for some fine views of the gigantic cruise ships that arrive and depart to and from the city each day.

The West Deck Home Oranjestad Aruba Menu Prices - induced.info

 

 

 

  • El Gaucho Argentine Grill

Located in a refurbished colonial townhouse, El Gaucho Argentine Grill was the first Argentinian restaurant to open on Aruba in 1977. Since then, the restaurant has made a name for itself by serving the biggest and, some say, best steaks on the island, even receiving an Aruba Business Award in that category in the past. While the menu mainly features a large selection of Argentinian-style grilled meats, there is also a nod to El Gaucho’s Aruban locale, with a section devoted to Carib seafood. Try the famous one-pound Gaucho steak, or the Argentine shish kabob, a skewer containing pieces of grilled beef tenderloin, chorizo, pork tenderloin and vegetables.

The only beef that I will eat is at El Gaucho Argentine Grill in Aruba. | Gaucho  restaurant, Eat, Aruba

 

 

 

  • Yemanja Woodfire Grill

Located by the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Oranjestad, Yemanja Woodfire Grill is a hip local restaurant specializing in Caribbean-European fusion. The woodfire grill, for which the restaurant is named, is fueled by wood from the island, so diners can literally taste the essence of Aruba in every delicious bite. Fortunately, Chef Joyce Husken and her kitchen staff are happy to accommodate many dietary restrictions, an extra level of dedication most restaurants don’t typically offer. So, whether you go for gluten-free or vegetarian, you’ll be able to enjoy a meal at Yemanja.

Yemanja Woodfired Grill Restaurant | Oranjestad | Aruba | AFAR

 

 

 

  • Wilhelmina

Even though Wilhelmina is just a recent addition to Aruba’s gastronomy, it’s already a popular dining destination in Oranjestad. The restaurant is named after the Dutch Queen, Wilhemina, who was adored far outside the borders of the Netherlands, and honors her far-reaching influence by serving an internationally inspired cuisine with ingredients from all around the world. The cuisine of each dish on the menu is designated with a small flag, proving it’s completely possible for French bouillabaisse and Chinese Peking duck to coexist peacefully on the same card.

Wilhelmina — Aruba Restaurants

 

 

 

  • Gelatissimo Bistro

For a refreshing treat on a hot day, head over to Gelatissimo Bistro located in the heart of downtown Oranjestad. This bistro and gelateria is housed in a traditional Dutch-style colonial building, but the offerings on the menu are uniquely Italian. For lunch, try one of the bistro’s pizzas, paninis or salads, all for very reasonable prices. However, just be sure not to miss Gelatissimo’s selection of gelatos (Italian-style ice cream) and sorbets made from fruit grown on Aruba itself.

Gelatissimo Bistro, Oranjestad - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN ARUBA

 

  • Caya G.F. Betico Croes

Aruba's main shopping street, Caya G.F. Betico Croes (named after ex-member of parliament Croes, who was responsible for setting Aruba's independence from the Dutch Antilles, back in 1986) is a half-mile long smorgasbord of international and local shops, snack bars, art galleries and department stores. Good buys include European fashion, quality electronics, French perfume, Swiss watches and local artisan gifts and delicacies. Aruba has no sales tax, and the duty is low (usually around 3-4%), so plan to buy your souvenirs here. The Caya G.F. Betico Croes and surroundings just underwent a major renovation, including the solar-powered tramcars (transporting visitors from the cruise-ship terminal to several points downtown), the revamped Parliament House, new art sculptures and commemorative statues.

Colors of Aruba Oranjestad shopping centre - Colors of Aruba

 

 

 

  • The Wharfside Flea Market

Bring your best haggling tricks and get ready to bargain for T-shirts, local arts, crafts and delicacies. This flea market at the dock of Oranjestad's harbor used to be Aruba's first public market. Years ago, before the big supermarkets started to pop up everywhere, farmers and fishermen brought their fresh fruits, vegetables and fish here, at these open-air kiosks along the harbor, for locals to barter and buy. The Waf (wharf) was desolated for a while, but one day it picked up its trading habits and resuscitated as a flea market, bringing tourists closer to the island's culture and traditions.

File:Aruba Flea Market.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

  • La Linda

From luxury malls and top-tier global brands to extensive variety shops, outdoor flea markets and off-the-beaten-path specialty stores, shoppers can exceed their wildest expectations in Aruba. But, if visitors want to dig deeper into the local shopping scene and sniff some history and culture along the way, a browse tour through La Linda is highly recommended. This family-owned business, located at the beginning of the main street, is not only Aruba's first department store chain, it's a local pride and the place to find anything you need at the lowest prices. Clothing for the whole family, shoes, suitcases, pans, pins, plastic parrots and religious memorabilia... La Linda has it!

No photo description available.

 

 

 

  • Aruba Aloe Factory, Museum and Store

This museum, factory and store in one, is a must-visit for everyone interested in Aruba's history as world's largest exporter of the aloe vera. By taking a fifteen minute tour, visitors will learn about the island's aloe industry past and present, the production process of this natural remedy and the many health benefits that can be achieved by using aloe vera preparations, both orally or topically. Shop for your own personal line of aloe products or purchase some typical island gifts. But don't leave before finding out everything there is to know about Aruba's aloe background. Tour guides are available in English, Dutch, Spanish and native language Papiamento. Dig deeper into the island's soil and feel the heal.

Aruba Aloe Factory, Palmera Rum & Zeerover

 

 

 

  • Super Food Plaza

Once located on the L.G. Smith Boulevard, surrounded by all the island's bigger supermarkets in Oranjestad, Super Food has come a long way. From grocery store filled with fresh produce and Dutch brands to the new and growing Super Food Plaza shopping complex in Bubali, where customers can do their daily groceries, have a delicious lunch in Jack's Cafe, pick out the finest wines and liquors at Cheers, buy the freshest fish and seafood at Daily Fish, shop for home appliances and decor at Casa, browse for top quality toys at Intertoys, or get an eye exam and new glasses at Optica Sun Specs. This is not a supermarket, it's Super Food Plaza!

Grocery Shopping at Super Food Plaza in Aruba - news - Craig Cavallo

 

 

 

  • Trash By Ronchi

Although its name suggests otherwise, Trash By Ronchi is a one-of-a-kind fashion and lifestyle boutique that specializes in trendy island wear for the young and the young at heart. Local fashion designer Ronchi De Cuba's mission to provide all ethnicities, body shapes, sizes and gender with the latest styles at irresistible prices, is accomplished. With a mixed collection of imported brands and local creations, this young guru of style and image has been dressing up the famed and the infamous in Aruba. Models, misses, moms, ma'ams and misters... everybody can trash the old look and show off a bold, new style.

Trash By Ronchi

 

 

 

  • Fantasea

Fantasea's hip and colorful concept is a feast for the eye and imagination, showcasing a captivating array of travel essentials like the international luggage and lifestyle brand Kipling. For swim, beach, surf and casual wear for the whole family, Fantasea houses top quality names like Roxy, Quicksilver, Cover Me and Hurley, among other favorite collections. If Aruba is on your travel agenda, stop by at Fantastea for the most fashionable beach cover-ups, trendiest tank tops and tees, coolest caps, comfiest flip flops and bulging bags of fun accessories and one-of-a-kind souvenirs. Don't fantasize, get into the island vibe with Fantasea.

Fantasea: Aruba Shopping Review - 10Best Experts and Tourist Reviews

 

 

 

  • Foot Fit

For anyone living on this planet, who's never heard of the German brand Birkenstock... we're talking about sandals here. And not just any sandals, but probably one of the most comfortable footgear on earth. Okay, fine, don't believe it, but do your feet a big favor and visit one of the three Foot Fit stores to see what they have in stock. The Finn Comfort shoes and sandals for ladies and gentlemen are ideal for a more elegant look, while the Clarks collection is all about alleviation in style. Whatever is preferred, - liberated toes or covered ones - at Foot Fit there is a perfect fit for everyone.

Birkenstock : Sungei Wang Plaza

 

 

 

  • Penha Aruba

Founded in 1865 by the Penha family in Curaçao, this renowned company evolved into one of the leading beauty and lifestyle retailers in the Caribbean. With luxury brands like Estee Lauder, Clinique, Chanel, Dior, a skilled sales staff and the recently added Victoria's Secret and MAC, Aruba prides itself with five Penha stores. The first and oldest building is strategically located at the beginning of the main street, and has recently gone through some major renovations. The Mac Boutique and Victoria's Secret store are both located in downtown Oranjestad. At the Palm Beach Plaza there's another Victoria's Secret and a smaller Penha outlet.

Government of Aruba – Oranjestad, Aruba – Tension Structures

 

 

 

  • Caribbean Queen

"Adorn yourself with eminence and dignity, and clothe yourself with honor and majesty" is Caribbean Queen's motto and their amazing collection of one-of-a-kind accessories for all woman of the world, is the proof - from top of the head to tip of the toe. To become royalty, just make an entrance at this stylish Queendom and discover all the Caribbean treasures while striding with West Indian flair among inspiring and ready-to-wear art pieces, exclusive rewards, prestigious gems and distinguished guests. Get acquainted with Aruba's artisans and help promote the island's artistic talents. Join the cause and be grand! The royal staff of Caribbean Queen is always ready to serve.

Caribbean Queen (Palm - Eagle Beach) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You  Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Renaissance Marketplace

Stores open until late at night, providing the full range of dining choices from fast-food to gourmet, shopping finds including clothing, jewelry, souvenirs, designer sunglasses, gifts and linens, as well as entertainment options offered by the movie theater, nightlife spots and nearby casino.

Aruba Marketplace :: Renaissance Mall & Marketplace Aruba

 

 

 

  • Palm Beach Plaza

Palm Beach Plaza is more than just a shopping mall, it features a state-of the-art amphitheatre, spectacular water features and entertainment for the entire family. Palm Beach Plaza will certainly become the favorite venue for local and international artists as well as a prime location for top-of-the-line boutiques to showcase their latest fashions.

Palm Beach Plaza | Palm beach, Plaza, Aruba tours

 

 

 

  • Paseo Herencia

Paseo Herencia boasts a diversity of stylish stores offering quality goods and a panoply of eateries serving anything to suite one’s mood, as well as nightly entertainment and special events. Designer shops are stocked with the trendiest of fashions and famous labels.

Shopping Malls in Noord, Aruba - Paseo Herencia Mall

 

 

 

  • Village mall

A lifestyle center located at the entrance of the High Rise Hotel Area, depicting the authentic Aruban culture and architecture. The Village Mall offers the public a wide variety of restaurants, retail shops and outdoor entertainment.

Shopping Malls in Palm Beach, Aruba - The Village Mall

 

 

 

  • Royal Plaza Mall

If you are in search of known designer names then this is the mall for you. From Tommy Hilfiger to Benetton, the Royal Plaza Mall is one of the most traditional shopping areas on the island. Conveniently located near the cruise docks, this venue is designed to please tourists.

Royal Plaza Mall, Aruba - a photo on Flickriver

 

 

 

TORSTAI, 08. LOKAKUUTA 2020
KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

Self Driving Kruger National Park - Koala Travels the World

In terms of wildlife alone, Kruger is one of the world's greatest national parks. The diversity, density and sheer numbers of animals is almost unparalleled, and all of Africa's iconic safari species – elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, rhino, buffalo, giraffe, hippo and zebra – live out their dramatic days here, along with a supporting cast of 137 other mammal species and more than 500 varieties of bird.

The landscape is on a grand scale, stretching over 19,485 sq km, and though less in your face than the wildlife, it certainly has the power to charm. Beautiful granite kopjes (hills) pepper the bushveld in the south, the Lebombo Mountains rise from the savannah in the east and tropical forests cut across the far north. But what makes Kruger truly special is the access and opportunities it provides the visitor. A vast network of roads is there to explore on your own (incredibly), guided wildlife activities are everywhere and accommodation is both plentiful and great value.

Yes, Kruger can sometimes become crowded. And yes, you may have to wait in line to see those lions. But that's because the vast network of roads makes Kruger one of Africa's most accessible parks (explore on your own or take one of the plentiful guided wildlife activities) and accommodation is both plentiful and great value. If you think the crowds may overwhelm, consider the private reserves that surround the national park. Among these is Sabi Sand, one of Africa's finest.

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

The best time to visit Kruger National Park is at the beginning or end of the region's dry season, which falls between April and September. During Kruger's dry season, temperatures are mostly pleasant (with nighttime temps dipping into the high 40s and daytime temps occasionally reaching into the mid-80s). What's more, vegetation is sparse and water levels are low due to the lack of rain, meaning visitors will have a better chance of spotting animals. However, extreme dry seasons can also result in increased animal deaths, so it's best to avoid visiting in July, August and September, the season's driest months. And in the rainy season (from October to March), abundant rainstorms and foliage can make it difficult to see animals.

 

October-March - As its name implies, Kruger's rainy season is filled with subtropical rainstorms. Though the park's landscape will be beautiful to photograph at this time, more foliage and poor visibility from the rain will make it harder to see animals. Plus, mosquitoes are more prevalent during wet periods, and many safari vehicles are open to the elements, so bush walks and game drives can be a bit uncomfortable in the rain. Daytime temperatures in the rainy season average in the mid-80s to low 90s, while evening temps will fall into the low to high 60s.

April-September - The early and late months in Kruger's dry season offer ample opportunities to spot animals. Limited water and vegetation result in fewer viewing obstructions, and animals will typically congregate around what little water can be found in the park. The season's middle months are also great for game viewing, as long as the area does not have an uncharacteristically dry year. Rain showers are few and far between, so plan on leaving your umbrella at home. Mosquitoes won't be as much of a nuisance during the day, but travelers should still wear insect repellent with DEET as a precaution. Average highs will sit comfortably between the high 70s and mid-80s, with cooler temps in the high 40s to low 60s coming at night.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

There are several ways of getting to Kruger National Park. Journeys usually begin (and end) in Johannesburg or Cape Town. However, the most convenient option typically involves a direct flight from Kruger Mpumulanga International Airport to Livingstone Airport, meaning you won't have to overnight in Johannesburg. 

 

Fly Directly to Your Safari Lodge

Daily flights operate between Johannesburg and many of the private lodges surrounding the Kruger. This is the easiest and most convenient way to travel to the park. The flights take about 90 minutes and deliver you to the nearest airstrip of the lodge you are travelling to. A representative or ranger from your lodge will meet you at the airstrip and transfer you by game drive vehicle directly to your lodge.

Fly To Hoedspruit/Eastgate (HDS) or Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (KMIA/MQP) (Fractionally less expensive)

Several daily flights operate from Johannesburg to HDS or KMIA/MQP in the Kruger Surrounds and Panorama Route area. There is one flight daily from Cape Town direct to either HDS or KMIA/MQP. From these airports you can be transferred either by escorted road transfer (2/3 hours each way) or by charter flight (approx 25mins). If you are staying in the Sabi Sand Region, the most suitable airport would be KMIA/MQP and if you are staying further north, for example in the Timbavati Game Reserve, then HDS is the best option. Your consultant will be able to advise you further.

Self Drive (Least expensive but most time consuming) 

Self driving to the Kruger Park is a feasible option for those on a budget. The Kruger is about a six-hour drive from Johannesburg. The road is tarred and well maintained with clean service stations along the way. Fuel is never a problem in South Africa, and easy-to-follow maps are available with all car rentals. Why not split your time between the Kruger and the Kruger Surrounds and Panorama Route? The Kruger surrounds is famous for God's Window, the Blyde River Canyon and Bourkes Luck Potholes. Mpumalanga is also home to some of South Africa's most spectacular scenery, including waterfalls and mountain passes.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to get around Kruger National Park is to book a safari tour. Safari guides know the park's roads and game-viewing areas well, so you won't have to worry about getting lost while trying to spot animals. Many safari packages also cover food, lodging, game drives and transportation to and from a regional airstrip or Johannesburg. If you'd rather avoid a group tour, you can rent a car at most of Kruger's airports and Skukuza rest camp. Car hires are also available from Johannesburg's O.R. Tambo International Airport (JNB), but you'll have to drive 244 miles (or about four hours) to reach the park. A faster (albeit pricier) option is to fly into Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (MQP), Hoedspruit Airport (HDS), Hendrik Van Eck Airport (PHW) or Skukuza Airport (SZK) from O.R. Tambo.

 Safari - Safari tours offer a convenient way to get around Kruger without blowing your budget. Guides can provide a wealth of information about local flora and fauna while navigating the park's roads, meaning you can focus all your energy on searching for wildlife. Safaris generally span several days and include one or two game drives on each day of your trip. Plus, most safari rates – which vary by company – cover accommodations, airport transfers, park entrance fees and some or all meals. The majority of local safari operators offer group tours, but pricier options, such as Moriti Private Safaris, provide private, customizable tours.

Car - Driving around Kruger is not recommended. Poorly marked roads can be confusing to navigate, and fuel stations are only offered at main rest camps. However, travelers will have the flexibility of choosing their own start and stop times for park drives. To navigate Kruger's roads, consult maps like those found on the park's website and Siyabona Africa's website. Most major car rental companies have kiosks at O.R. Tambo and Kruger Mpumalanga, while Skukuza, Hoedspruit and Hendrik Van Eck only offer car hires from Avis or Bidvest Car Rental. On average, standard car rentals cost $12 to $20 per day. Note: An international driver's permit is required to drive in South Africa. Applications for international driver's permits are available on DMV.org's website and AAA's website.

Plane - The fastest way to get to and from Kruger is to fly into one of four airstrips located in or just outside of the park's perimeter. All regional airports offer direct flights every day to and from Johannesburg. On average, round-trip tickets between O.R. Tambo and Skukuza, Hoedspruit, Hendrik Van Eck or Kruger Mpumalanga cost approximately $100 to $400 per person. Kruger Mpumalanga has the most daily flights of any regional airport, while Skukuza is the only airstrip situated within Kruger's gates. Every flight is operated by South African Airways' partner Airlink and lasts less than an hour.

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

 

  • Ukuthula Bush Lodge

Set in Hoedspruit, 18 km from Kinyonga Reptile Centre, Ukuthula Bush Lodge offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a bar. 44 km from Lissataba Private Game Reserve and 19 km from Otters Den Ballooning, the property provides a shared lounge and a garden. The air-conditioned rooms provide a garden view and come with a wardrobe and free WiFi. At the hotel, all rooms include a patio with a mountain view. The private bathroom is fitted with a shower, a hairdryer and free toiletries. A continental breakfast is available every morning at Ukuthula Bush Lodge. The accommodation offers a sun terrace. Guests at Ukuthula Bush Lodge will be able to enjoy activities in and around Hoedspruit, like hiking. Waterhole/Pan is 19 km from the hotel, while Jessica the Hippo is 20 km from the property. The nearest airport is Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport, 14 km from Ukuthula Bush Lodge.

 

 

 

  • Riverview Inn

Set in Malelane, 11 km from Malelane Gate, Riverview Inn offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a garden. Each accommodation at the 4-star hotel has river views, and guests can enjoy access to a sun terrace. The air-conditioned rooms provide pool view and come with a wardrobe and free WiFi. At the hotel, every room includes a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. At Riverview Inn, the rooms come with a seating area. The nearest airport is Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport, 61 km from the accommodation.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Lions Place

Situated within the Greater Kruger National Park, Lions Place is located in Grietjie Private Nature Reserve. It offers a viewing tower and upper deck area to enjoy the bush view and spot game that comes to drink at the waterhole in front of the lodge. The tastefully decorated rooms offer tea-and-coffee making facilities, air conditioning and safety deposit box. The bathrooms are fitted with a shower. Guests can relax on sun loungers by the pool. The game drives are offered at an additional charge and are hosted by guides in either English or French. The nearest airport is Phalaborwa Airport, 21 km from Lions Place.

 

 

 

  • Sheppard Boutique Guest House

Set in Nelspruit, 8 km from Mbombela Stadium, Sheppard Boutique Guest House offers accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a bar and a shared lounge. Each accommodation at the 4-star hotel has garden views, and guests can enjoy access to a garden and to a terrace. The accommodation features a concierge service and free WiFi throughout the property. All guest rooms come with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel all rooms include a wardrobe and a private bathroom. Guests at Sheppard Boutique Guest House can enjoy a continental or a buffet breakfast. I'Langa Mall is 5 km from the accommodation, while Nelspruit Nature Reserve is 5 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kruger Mpumalanga International, 27 km from Sheppard Boutique Guest House, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Bushveld Terrace - Hotel on Kruger

Bushveld Terrace - Hotel on Kruger is situated 290 m from the Kruger National Park’s Phalaborwa Gate. The hotel features an outdoor pool, a restaurant and a sun terrace. Decorated in natural colours, the elegant rooms at Bushveld Terrace come complete with a flat-screen satellite TV, desk, small refrigerator and tea-and-coffee-making facilities. Each unit offers an en suite bathroom and some include a seating area. The hotel’s restaurant serves breakfast daily, and has an à la carte and buffet menu. Packed lunches can be arranged upon request. Free WiFi is available and facilities offered include a children's playground. Guests can explore the Kruger National Park that boasts an array of wildlife. Activities in the surrounding area include golfing and hiking. The hotel is within 3 km from the Phalaborwa Airport and 4 km from the Hans Merensky Golf Estate. Airport transfers to and from the hotel can be arranged upon advance request.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Perry's Bridge Hollow Boutique Hotel

This unique boutique hotel offers elegant rooms with a patio in a scenic setting with native trees and savannah landscape. Perry's Bridge Hollow includes several restaurants, an outdoor swimming pool and shops on-site. Guests can book trips and activities at the tour desk. The air-conditioned rooms at Perry's Bridge Hollow Boutique Hotel include satellite TV, a refrigerator and tea and coffee making facilities. They each have a bathroom with a shower and an extra outdoor shower is available on the patio. Perry's Bridge is only a 15-minute drive from the Kruger National Park. The famous Panorama Route is 40 minutes away by car. Free private parking is available on site. Guests can relax with a cocktail at Kuka Restaurant & Cocktail bar or enjoy a pizza at Pappa’s Pizzeria. The Perry’s Bridge Trading Post & Corner store includes a delicatessen, beauty salon and home décor store.

The swimming pool at or close to Perry's Bridge Hollow Boutique Hotel

 

 

 

  • Moya Safari Villa

Located 68 km from the Orpen Gate of the Kruger National Park, Moya Safari Villa features accommodation, a restaurant, an outdoor swimming pool, a garden and a bar. There is a private bathroom with shower and a hairdryer in each unit, along with free toiletries. A terrace can be found at Moya Safari Villa, along with a shared lounge. Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre is 25 km from the lodge,while Jessica the Hippo is 19 km from the property. The nearest airport is Hoedspruit Eastgate, 14 km from Moya Safari Villa, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

The swimming pool at or close to Moya Safari Villa

 

 

 

  • Ivory Wilderness River Rock Lodge

Situated within the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve, Ivory Wilderness River Rock Lodge features a viewing deck, lounge and splash pool overlooking the Klaserie River. The thatched accommodation at Ivory Wilderness is equipped with a wardrobe, bedside lamps, mosquito nets and an en suite bathroom with a bath and a shower. They all offer either river or pool views. All meals are included in the rates at Ivory Wilderness River Rock Lodge. Ivory Wilderness River Rock lodge specialises in guided walking safaris and game drives. The lodge also provides free WiFi, an ironing service, as well as business facilities like fax and photocopying. Eastgate Airport is 80 km from the lodge.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Rafiki Bush Lodge

Situated in Hoedspruit, within 22 km of Kinyonga Reptile Centre and 47 km of Lissataba Private Game Reserve, Rafiki Bush Lodge provides accommodation with an outdoor swimming pool and a garden, and free WiFi. Among the various facilities are a terrace, a shared lounge, as well as a bar. The property is 24 km from Jessica the Hippo and 49 km from Blyderivierpoort Dam. The units at the hotel come with a seating area. Rafiki Bush Lodge offers some rooms with mountain views, and each room includes a patio. The rooms will provide guests with a fridge. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a buffet breakfast. The area is popular for cycling, and bike hire is available at Rafiki Bush Lodge. Speaking Afrikaans, English and Spanish, staff at the reception can help you plan your stay. Leading Edge Flight School is 7 km away and the nearest airport is Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport, 19 km from the property.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Vuyani Tented Camp

Vuyani Tented Camp features a restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, a fitness centre and bar in Hoedspruit. Featuring a shared lounge, the 5-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. The rooms at the hotel are equipped with a seating area. All units will provide guests with a desk and a kettle. Guests at Vuyani Tented Camp can enjoy a buffet or a à la carte breakfast. The accommodation offers a barbecue. Kinyonga Reptile Centre is 32 km from Vuyani Tented Camp, while Jessica the Hippo is 34 km away. The nearest airport is Hoedspruit Eastgate, 28 km from the hotel, and the property offers a free airport shuttle service.

A bird's-eye view of Vuyani Tented Camp

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

Located in the north-eastern corner of South Africa, Kruger Park covers an area of 2 million hectares. Added to that is Greater Kruger, 180 000 hectares of protected wilderness which lies on the Park’s western boundary. Combined, the Kruger region is the largest and one of the finest safari destinations in southern Africa.

If you’re planning a safari holiday in South Africa, you might be wondering whether you should stay in Kruger National Park itself or at one of the private reserves that lie adjacent to the national park. Turisti-Info will help you decide by clearing up the difference between the two wilderness regions and tips on where to stay depending on what interests you and your family or friends.

 

 

  • Sabi Sand Game Reserve

Within the borders of the large Sabi Sand Game Reserve are some of Southern Africa’s most luxurious safari lodges and the best wildlife watching on the continent. The area is routinely selected by safari connoisseurs as their destination of choice. As there’s no fencing between the various private lodges within the greater Sabi Sand area, all share the same wealth of birds and animals, but they're all far enough apart that no-one gets in each other's way.

Sabi Sands Game Reserve, South Africa – The Explorations Company

 

 

 

  • Kapama Private Game Reserve

With four luxury lodges and the Big Five in residence (as well as occasional passing wild dogs and great birding), 13,000-hectare Kapama gets all of the important things right. Unlike most other private reserves, which constitute a patchwork of privately owned landholdings, Kapama is unusual in that it's the preserve of just one family, who have added to the reserve over the years since its establishment in 1986. The family also runs the Centre for Endangered Species on the reserve's southern boundary.

Jabulani Safari | Kapama game Reserve | Limpopo | Exclusive Getaways

 

 

 

  • Timbavati Private Nature Reserve

Timbavati abuts Kruger National Park's western boundary and has an excellent mix of wildlife, conservation and good accommodation. Its accommodation settings are less sumptuous than those at Sabi Sand, so it tends to be more reasonably priced, without forgoing too many amenities. The reserve was once known for its population of white lions. Far more reliably, we saw the Big Five on a single game drive.

Tanda Tula, Timbavati Private Game Reserve | Made in Africa Tours and  Safaris

 

 

 

  • Tshokwane

About halfway between the rest camps at Satara and Skukuza, or between Lower Sabie and Satara, Tshokwane has been transformed from an attractive picnic spot into a genuine stopover as you move between central and southern Kruger. The restaurant serves light meals, such as wors roll or kudu wors, jaffles and homemade pies, as well as other sausages off the braai and salads.

Tshokwane Picnic Spot | South Africa | AFAR

 

 

 

  • Crooks Corner

On the outskirts of a beautiful fever-tree forest, Crooks Corner marks not only the confluence of the Luvuvhu and Limpopo Rivers but also the historic meeting place of Zimbabwe, Mozambique, South Africa and smugglers (it's all in the name). It's more for the scenery and geopolitical interest than for wildlife. 

History - Crook's Corner

 

 

 

  • Elephant Hall Museum

Even if you're not staying at Letaba Rest Camp, it's worth swinging by to check out this excellent museum. It has life-size skeletons and dozens of fascinating displays and information panels on everything from Kruger's big tuskers to the place of elephants in world and Kruger history.

University of Nebraska State Museum of Natural History and Mueller  Planetarium | VisitNebraska.com

 

 

 

  • Bobbejaankrans

This overlooks a section of the Timbavati River that animals often visit to slake their thirst. It's especially good early morning or late afternoon.

Bobbejaan Krans - South Africa Rock Climbing Routes Wiki

 

 

 

  • Renosterpan

This waterhole north of Berg-en-dal usually lives up to its name (renoster is rhino in Afrikaans). Late afternoon is best.

Renosterpan Waterhole Viewpoint | Mapio.net

 

 

 

  • Klaserie Private Nature Reserve

A 600-sq-km (or 60,000 hectare) private wildlife reserve in the greater Kruger area, Klaserie has strong conservation credentials.

Luxury bush lodge in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve in Hoedspruit[....]

 

 

 

  • Transport Dam

This large water hole is where the famous YouTube video 'Battle at Kruger' (lions versus buffaloes versus croc) was filmed.

Buffalo Versus Lions Versus Crocodiles Versus Lions Again – Epic Battle For  Survival [Video] – 2oceansvibe News | South African and international news

 

 

 

  • Manyeleti Game Reserve

During the apartheid era, the 23,000-hectare Manyeleti was the only wildlife reserve that blacks were permitted to visit. Due to its unfenced boundary with Kruger there is no shortage of animals here (including the Big Five), but you may have to look a littler harder than in Sabi Sand or Timbavati as there's less water. As compensation, prices are much lower here, and the birdwatching, with 300 recorded species, is excellent.

Manyeleti Game Reserve - The ultimate private safari game reserve in South  Africa

 

 

 

  • Thornybush Private Game Reserve

This 13,816-hectare reserve is a collaboration between 12 lodges (the number keeps going up every year), with a focus on high-end comforts and excellent game drives. As with all of the private reserves, it's big on conservation and community projects. All of the lodges can be contacted through the Thornybush website.

Thornybush Game Lodge | Discover Africa Safaris

 

 

 

  • Nkuklu Picnic Spot

One of Kruger's designated picnic spots. Between Skukuza and Lower Sabie. It's in a wildlife-rich area (elephants in particular love the riverbed when it's dry), so get out your binoculars and keep your wits about you.

UWS Trip, Nkulu Picnic Spot | daniellesisson

 

 

 

  • Pafuri Picnic Area

Near the Luvuvhu River, this is one of Kruger's picnic areas; visitors can alight from their vehicles here. Birdlife is particularly prolific up here in the north, so have binoculars and your field guide at the ready.

Tracks4Africa Padkos - Pafuri Picnic Spot (Kruger Park)

 

 

 

  • Mlondozi Picnic Area

One of Kruger's designated picnic spots. North of Lower Sabie, which means it can get crowded in peak season. Given how prolific wildlife is in the area, scan the surrounding area before getting out of your vehicle.

Tracks4Africa Photo Gallery for Mlondozi Picnic Spot

 

 

 

  • Nkumbe

Set atop a rare ridge not far from the Tshokwane stop and restaurant, Nkumbe offers a vast view over the western savannah. The views are glorious. Watch for rhinos on the plains down below.

Kruger Park Places Nkumbe Lookout Point • Stories Of The Kruger

 

 

 

  • Engelhard Dam

This dam on the Letaba River along the S62 is worth a visit. Waterbucks and lions are regularly sighted here, and en route you may pass elephants, buffaloes and steenboks.

Letaba River - Wikiwand

 

 

 

  • Babalala Picnic Spot

One of Kruger's designated picnic spots. Between Shingwedzi and Punda Maria, in the park's far north. There's excellent birdwatching in the vicinity.

Tracks4Africa Padkos - Babalala Picnic Spot

 

 

 

  • Sunset Dam

On the doorstep of Lower Sabie, the dam is often alive with birdlife, hippos, crocs and more. Given its proximity to the rest camp, it can get busy.

Animalscapes of the Kruger National Park, animals in their environment

 

 

 

  • Timbavati Picnic Area

One of Kruger's designated picnic spots. Northwest of Satara. Have a late lunch here as a prelude to a loop along the S127 and S39.

Timbavati Picnic Spot in Central Region, Kruger National Park, Limpopo

 

 

 

  • Bird Watching

This has become a very popular activity in the Kruger National Park, mostly due to the hugely diverse selection of birds. Birds are in abundance throughout the park but the Northern area of the park is particularly favoured. Some of the birds that are found here can be seen nowhere else in Southern Africa. The Kruger National Park currently has eleven bird hides to choose from and over 226 different species of birds have been sited.

Birds in the Kruger National Park: A colorful collection

 

 

  • Play Golf

The Kruger National Park sports four courses for you to try your hand at. The Sabie River golf course, the Leopard Creek golf course, Skukuza and the Hans Merensky golf course. As the Park enjoys a sub-tropical climate, golf is best played in the cooler months of winter. This is a great opportunity to get up and close with wildlife, while enjoying 18 holes

Kruger Park Lodge Golf Club in Hazyview, Ehlanzeni, South Africa | Golf  Advisor

 

 

 

  • Mountain- Bike Trails

Swapping four wheels for two may be a wise choice. The most prestigious trails can be found at Olifants Camp where you will be supplied with all the equipment you need. Different trails are available depending on your skill and fitness level.

Kruger National Park Mountain Bike Trails | Mountain Biking Kruger | Guided Mountain  Biking Trips - Dirty Boots

 

 

 

  • Morning Open Vehicle Safari Drive

You will be collected at your Lodge between 5:30 & 06:00 am (Only Lodges in Hazyview Hotels and Lodges, Perry’s Bridge outpost). Guests will enter the Kruger National Park just as the gates open. The guide will explore various watering holes and lookout points throughout the morning to increase the amount and variety of animals guests can encounter

Luxury Safaris at Sabi Sabi | Big Five Safaris in South Africa

 

 

 

  • Guided Bush Walks

Nothing will put you in the heart of an African adventure quite like walking in The Kruger National Park.You will walk with experienced guides. The aim of the walk is to learn and appreciate the intricate details of the nature surrounding you. Once your senses have been activated, you will be able to tune into all the sights, sounds and smells that one often does not get to experience in a vehicle.

Guided Kruger National Park Walk | Hazyview | Things To Do

 

 

 

  • Full Day Open Vehicle Safari Drive

We collect our guests very early from their lodges in the Hazyview and at the well-known Perry’s Bridge Trading Post & Tourism Centre.  We can also provide private tours for guests staying in Skukuza, Pretoriuskop, outside of Hazyview, White River and Nelspruit (Mbombela). Our custom built open safari vehicles affords all guests great comfort and the optimal view of animals, especially the Big 5!

The Real Cost of an African Safari: From Budget to | ShermansTravel

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

 

 

  • Timbavati Picnic Area

 DIY bush dining at its best, with great wildlife watching nearby. One of Kruger's designated picnic spots. Northwest of Satara. Have a late lunch here as a prelude to a loop along the S127 and S39.

Image may contain: food

 

 

 

  • Tshokwane

Picnic-area, turned open-air cafe with above-average variety.

Tshokwane Picnic Site - Page 2 - Africa Wild

 

 

 

  • Lower Sabie Rest Camp

Mugg & Bean inhabits a deck looking out over the water.

Mugg & Bean, Lower Sabie Rest camp - Review of Mugg & Bean, Kruger National  Park, South Africa - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Olifants Rest Camp

 Easily the best views of any of the rest-camp restaurants.

Olifants Camp is built high on a hill overlooking the Olifants River

 

 

 

  • Letaba Rest Camp

 Dine under the stars as the resident bushbuck grazes nearby

TINDLOVU RESTAURANTS, Letaba - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Rhino Post Safari Lodge 

Great food in an exclusive setting.

rhino-post-safari-lodge-food - Africa Geographic Travel

 

 

 

 

VACCINE RECOMENDATION

Do you need to take malaria pills in the Kruger National Park? Rhino  Africa's Travel Tips - YouTube

Travellers should be up to date for routine childhood vaccines such as tetanus, measles and hepatitis B. Any of the following vaccines may also be recommended – hepatitis A, typhoid, rabies, influenza. Decisions regarding which are most appropriate depend on duration and nature of travel, itinerary, age, underlying medical conditions and past vaccination.

 

 

TIISTAI, 06. LOKAKUUTA 2020
BOLIVIA, SOUTH AMERICA

15 Amazing Places in Bolivia That Will Take Your Breath Away

Superlative in its natural beauty, rugged, vexing, complex and slightly nerve-racking, Bolivia is one of South America’s most diverse and intriguing nations.

 

Adventure

Bolivia is not for the faint of heart: rattling down the World's Most Dangerous Road into sultry Yungas; soaring breathless above verdant La Paz valleys in a paraglider; jumping on a horse for a Wild West adventure near Tupiza; pulling a catfish that outweighs you out of an Amazon river (and maybe cooking it for dinner!). Whether your tools are crampons and an ice axe for scaling 6000m Andean peaks, or a helmet and bravado for jumping into the abyss on a glider, Bolivia's rocks, rivers and ravines will challenge – nay, provoke – you into pushing your own personal limits.

Culture

Bolivians love a parade, and hardly a month passes without a procession of brightly costumed celebrants honoring an important historical date or deity. You'll hear them from blocks away before the brass bands and whirligigging dancers approach and envelop you (you may even get to join in). Learn about the history and culture of the country's indigenous peoples at excellent museums, and through the continued presence of traditions and customs in everyday life. Bolivia has South America’s largest percentage of indigenous people – get to know them better by participating in community-based tourism and hiring local guides.

Nature

Bolivia is so biodioverse that unique species are being discovered to this day. Tiptoe into caves of tube-lipped nectar bats, their tongues probing the darkness. Tread lightly on the terrain of the poisonous annellated coral snake, deadly in look and effect. Listen for the cackling call and response of a dozen different macaw species (among 1000 bird species) including the world’s rarest, the bluebeard, which can only be found here. Multihued butterflies and moths flit at your feet in the jungle; lithe alpacas and vicuñas stand out in the stark altiplano. Deep in the forest live jaguars, pumas and bears.

Food & Drink

Ever had a llama tenderloin? Here’s your chance, maybe with a glass of Tarija wine. Bolivia's food is as diverse as its peoples and you'll find new delicacies to sample in every town. Markets are a good place to start, though the steaming pots of unfamiliar concoctions might test your nerve. Freshly blended fruit juices will no doubt become a daily habit, and Yungas coffee can be found in a number of new cafes that are popping up around Bolivia. La Paz, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz have thriving restaurant scenes where you can sample contemporary takes on traditional local dishes.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT BOLIVIA

Generally speaking, climate varies much more as a result of altitude and topography than it does between different seasons. Nevertheless, there are clear-cut seasonal differences. Winter (invierno) runs between May and October: this is the dry season, and in many ways the best time to visit, though it’s also the high season for tourism, so some prices will be higher and attractions busier. In the highlands it’s noticeably colder at night, particularly in June and July. The days are slightly shorter, but usually sunny, and the skies crystal clear, making this the best time of year for trekking and climbing. Winter is also the best time for visiting the hot and humid lowlands, when temperatures are generally slightly (but pleasantly) lower, although the dry season is less pronounced and rain remains a possibility all year round. A few times a year, usually between July and August, the country is swept by cold fronts coming up from Patagonia, known as surazos, which can send temperatures plunging even in the Amazon. Towards the end of the dry season in late August and September, farmers set fire to cleared forest areas across much of Bolivia, which can obscure views and cause respiratory problems.

Summer (verano) is the rainy season, which runs roughly from November to March and is much more pronounced in the lowlands; in the Amazon, road transport becomes pretty much impossible, as huge areas are flooded and everything turns to mud – though, conversely, river transport becomes more frequent. Heat, humidity and mosquitoes are also much worse. In the highlands, particularly the Altiplano, it rains much less and travel is not as restricted, though delays and road closures still occur, while trekking trails get muddier and clouds often obscure views, particularly in the high mountains, where route-finding can become impossible. Despite this, the rainy season is also a very beautiful time in the Andes, as the parched Altiplano and mountainsides are briefly transformed into lush grassland and wild flowers proliferate.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO BOLIVIA

Air travel is the obvious way to get to Bolivia, the main airports are located in La Paz to the western side of the country and in Santa Cruz to the east. The arrival plan must be based mostly in the purpose of your visit to the country; you have to remember that La Paz receives most of their visitors due to the immense culture and heritage from the Incas and other indigenous cultures from the Andean region, and therefore from La Paz it is easier to move to the Tiwanaku ruins, Oruro's carnival, Potosi’s mines, Uyuni, Lake Titicaca, Los Yungas, valley and the Andres Mountains; since La Paz is the seat of government all the embassies and foreign organizations have their headquarters in the city, which is useful in case of an emergency. On the other side, Santa Cruz with a warmer weather could become a good location for doing business visit other alternatives in tourism like the Misiones, the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park or visit the eastern cities. There are also some foreign consulates in Santa Cruz. But don’t forget that the cities in the south and central Bolivia, like Cochabamba, Tarija and Sucrealso offer a very rich experience; there are several ways to get to these cities from La Paz or Santa Cruz.

From Europe - Following on from Aerosur's demise in September 2012, the best options from Europe to Bolivia are now with Air Europa or Boliviana de Aviacion from Madrid to Santa Cruz. Other connections can be made in neighbouring countries such as Brazil or Peru, or in the US. The cost could go from €1000-1200 to other higher prices depending on the class and duration.

 

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND BOLIVIA

Air - Air travel is the quickest and most reliable way to reach out-of-the-way places, and it’s reasonably inexpensive.

Bus - The most popular form of transport; it can be uncomfortable and at times nerve-racking, but it’s cheap and relatively safe.

Tours - Popular and hassle-free way to get to remote locations like the Salar de Uyuni.

Train - Around the same price as the bus, but much slower. It does, however, offer heating and air-conditioning.

Bicycle - For cyclists who can cope with the challenges of cold winds, poor road conditions, high altitudes and steep terrain, Bolivia is a paradise. Mountain bikes are common on Bolivia's large number of dirt roads. While traffic isn’t a serious problem (though cliffs are), intimidating buses and camiones (flatbed trucks) can leave cyclists in clouds of dust or embedded in mud. Finding supplies may prove difficult, so cyclists in remote areas must carry ample food and water. Given these challenges, many prefer to leave the work to a tour company. Make sure you purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy.

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN BOLIVIA

 

 

  • Buganvillas Hotel Suites & Spa​

Set in a charming complex boasting a swimming pool, 2 restaurants, a tennis court and a football pitch, Buganvillas Hotel Suites & Spa offers self-catering suites with free Wi-Fi. Santa Cruz city centre is 3.3 km away. Decorated with contemporary art and stylish furniture, suites at Buganvillas feature spacious seating areas with upholstered armchairs. Self-catering facilities include refrigerators and microwaves. A buffet breakfast is served daily. Soho Restaurant offers regional dishes, whereas Bug-n-Grill offers steak options. Snacks and drinks can be enjoyed at the bar. Spa facilities include a sauna, a fitness centre and a massage rooms. Guests can unwind on the sun loungers by the pool or engage in football, tennis and volleyball matches. Free parking is provided. Buganvillas Hotel Suites & Spa is 3.2 km from 24 de septiembre Square and 17 km from Santa Cruz International Airport.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Hotel LP Columbus

Situated in the centre of La Paz and just in front of the Hernando Siles Stadium, Hotel LP Columbus offers modern accommodation with free Wi-Fi and a restaurant. All rooms at Hotel LP Columbus are spacious and feature a private bathroom, a flat-screen cable TV and a minibar. Suites are also fitted with a seating area and a spa bath. The buffet breakfast includes a choice of pastries, juices, cereals and yoghurt. The hotel’s restaurant offers a wide variety of Bolivian and international dishes, which can be served straight to the room. The hotel also offers an airport shuttle service. El Alto Airport can be reached within 25 minutes by car.

A bed or beds in a room at Hotel LP Columbus

 

 

 

  • Hotel Camino Real

Located in an elegant district and set within an extensive lagoon pool, Camino Real Hotel is 10 km from the city centre of Santa Cruz de la Sierra. It features a spa with sauna, hot tub and massage facilities. Camino Real Hotel has an outdoor swimming pool with a water slide, a whirlpool and a wet bar. Guests will also find a beautiful indoor pool. There are gym facilities and certified professionals who deliver beauty treatments and fitness sessions at the Health Club. Rooms at the Camino Real Hotel are equipped with modern appliances, including WiFi, air conditioning and cable TV channels. All rooms offer a seating area and private bathrooms and are constantly being renovated and kept in optimal conditions. Guests can enjoy the in-house La Tranquera and Novo Cafe Lounge restaurants. Other facilities include a well-equipped gym with steam bath and a children’s playground. Santa Cruz de la Sierra´s popular Museo Etno-Folklorico and the Basilica Menor de San Lorenzo are both within a 20-minute drive from Camino Real Hotel. Viru Viru International Airport is 15 km away.

A bird's-eye view of Hotel Camino Real

 

 

  • Hotel G

Hotel G is located in Santa Cruz de la Sierra. The property is 3.8 km away of the main square September 24th and 12 minutes by car, 1.8 km from Zoo Fauna Southamerica and 2.3 km from Arenal Park. The property is situated 2.9 km from Metropolitan Cathedral. The rooms in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. Rooms are equipped with a private bathroom with a shower. A continental breakfast is available each morning at the property. Speaking English, Spanish and French at the reception, staff are willing to help at any time of the day. Sacred Art Museum is 3 km from Hotel G, while Gabriel Rene Moreno Autonomous University is 3.3 km away. Viru Viru International Airport is 13 km from the property. Parque industrial is located 30 minutes away by car and the Fexpocruz is located 6.2 km from the property.

A bed or beds in a room at Hotel G

 

 

 

  • Senses Hotel Equipetrol

Featuring an outdoor swimming pool, and a fitness centre, Senses Hotel Equipetrol offers free Wi-Fi and breakfast in Santa Cruz de la Sierra. The main square is 3 km away. Providing a tranquil environment, the rooms in Senses Hotel Equipetrol feature private bathrooms, air conditioning, and flat-screen TVs. Guests at Senses are provided room service and laundry services can be arranged upon request. Tourism information is available to explore the area. Senses Hotel Equipetrol is an 8-minute walk from the shopping centre and 15 km from Viru Viru International Airport. Free private parking is possible on site.

 

 

 

  • Ritz Apart Hotel

Set in a residential neighbourhood of La Paz, this hotel offers free WiFi and easy access to different embasies like Brazil, United States of America, UK,and Spain. Also are near the new cableway stations white and yellow. The cafeteria Boutique Roaster is next to the hotel. All 70 luxurious suites of Ritz Apart Hotel distributed in 12 floors include cable TV. Some suites have balconies overlooking La Paz. Rooms are elegantly furnished and offer a seating area. Guests can relax with a massage treatment. Hotel Ritz Apart’s tour desk can offer advice on excursions. Duke’s Restaurant serves local and international dishes, the specialities are grilled meats, pasta, hot and cold sandwiches served through room service, which follow biosafety protocol processes implemented by the hotel for your safety. Ritz Apart Hotel is a 20-minute drive or 5.6 km from El Alto International Airport, and offers shuttles to and from the airport at a fee.

A bed or beds in a room at Ritz Apart Hotel

 

 

 

  • Casa de Sal - Salt Hotel

Set in Uyuni's city centre, Casa de Sal - Salt Hotel offers accommodation with free WiFi and free private parking on site. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant and room service is available. Rooms at Casa de Sal - Salt Hotel are built with salt blocks and feature details of Andean décor. Each room is fitted with a private bathroom, a seating area, a dining table, flat-screen TV with cable channels and heating. Bed linen and towels are included. The hotel also offers bike hire.

A room at Casa de Sal - Salt Hotel

 

 

 

  • HOTEL MAISON FIORI (Centro)

HOTEL MAISON FIORI (Centro) is situated in Cochabamba, 1.3 km from September 14 Square and 1.5 km from Santo Domingo Church. This 3-star hotel offers a shared lounge and a tour desk. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, room service and free WiFi throughout the property. All rooms in the hotel are fitted with a flat-screen TV. Guests at HOTEL MAISON FIORI (Centro) can enjoy a continental or a buffet breakfast. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Santa Teresa Monastery, Colon Square and Cochabamba Cathedral. The nearest airport is Jorge Wilstermann International Airport, 5 km from HOTEL MAISON FIORI (Centro).

A seating area at HOTEL MAISON FIORI (Centro)

 

 

 

  • Hotel America

Hotel America has a restaurant, bar, a shared lounge and garden in Santa Cruz de la Sierra. Boasting family rooms, this property also provides guests with a terrace. The accommodation offers a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. All guest rooms come with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a microwave, a kettle, a bidet, a hairdryer and a desk. With a private bathroom fitted with a shower and free toiletries, rooms at the hotel also have a city view. At Hotel America all rooms include a seating area. Continental and buffet breakfast options are available every morning at the accommodation. The area is popular for cycling, and car hire is available at Hotel America. For business travellers' convenience, meeting and banquet facilities, a business centre, newspapers and a fax machine and photocopier are offered. Popular points of interest near the hotel include 24th of September Metropolitan Plaza, Arenal Park and Sacred Art Museum. The nearest airport is Viru Viru International, 17 km from Hotel America, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Apart Hotel Regina

Situated 300 m from Colon Square, Apart Hotel Regina features accommodation with a restaurant, a bar and a 24-hour front desk for your convenience. There is a fully equipped private bathroom with shower and free toiletries. The aparthotel offers a buffet or American breakfast. Apart Hotel Regina also offers a bicycle rental service and a business centre. Guests can also relax in the shared lounge area. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Santa Teresa Monastery, Quintanilla Square and Stadium Félix Capriles. The nearest airport is Jorge Wilstermann International, 4 km from Apart Hotel Regina, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • HOTEL CANCILLER

Located in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 400 m from Sacred Art Museum, HOTEL CANCILLER provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. Featuring a bar, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, room service and currency exchange for guests. At the hotel, every room is equipped with a desk and a flat-screen TV. All units include a wardrobe. HOTEL CANCILLER offers 4-star accommodation with a sauna and terrace. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Metropolitan Cathedral, 24th of September Metropolitan Plaza and Arenal Park. The nearest airport is Viru Viru International, 18 km from HOTEL CANCILLER, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service.

 

 

 

  • Kachi Lodge

Kachi Lodge has a restaurant, free bikes, a bar and shared lounge in Jirira. There is a terrace and guests can make use of free WiFi and free private parking. The lodge include a pick up and drop off from Uyuni airport, meals are a gourmet bolivian fusion meals accompanied with local wines and soft drinks. Activities with guide and driver that speaks english and spanish are also included. At the hotel, each room is equipped with a wardrobe. The rooms are fitted with a private bathroom with a shower, a hairdryer and free toiletries. At Kachi Lodge each room is fitted with a seating area. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a continental or a à la carte breakfast. Guests at Kachi Lodge will be able to enjoy activities in and around Jirira, like hiking and cycling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN BOLIVIA

This largely undiscovered country is just starting to gain international recognition as a must-visit tourist destination – and for good reason. Bolivia has plenty in store for the curious traveler. Marvel at the surreal landscapes of the Salar de Uyuni, conquer some of the most beautiful mountains on Earth, fish for piranha deep in the Amazon rainforest or pave your own way through a land whose indigenous inhabitants still cling to the fascinating traditions of a bygone era.

With such a varied topography and rich cultural diversity, no two travel experiences in Bolivia are alike. For the adventurer there is mountain biking, zip lining, swimming, hiking, snowboarding and rap jumping. Nature lovers can enjoy exploring the country’s spectacular national parks, amazon jungles, salt flats and pampas. History buffs can join city walking tours as well as visit Bolivia’s many fascinating archaeological sites while cultural enthusiasts can explore colorful markets, savor traditional dishes, partake in fun-filled fiestas and study Spanish.

 

 

  • La Paz

Very few people come to Bolivia without spending at least a day or two in the world’s highest (administrative) capital. Besides having a myriad of things to see and do, it serves as the perfect jumping off point for other attractions in the country.

High-altitude adventures in La Paz - Lonely Planet

 

 

 

  • Cochabamba

The gastronomic center of Bolivia, Cochabamba is famous for serving huge portions of the country’s finest cuisine. It also happens to have a perfect year-round climate, a thriving cultural scene and plenty of stunning nature reserves right on its doorstep.

Things To Do In Cochabamba, Bolivia - Bolivia Hop | Bolivia Hop

 

 

 

  • Santa Cruz

Bolivia’s economic powerhouse tends to be largely overlooked by travelers. While this rapidly expanding city doesn’t have many tourist attractions itself, venture a few hours beyond its borders and you’ll find captivating sand dunes, rainforests, rivers and waterfalls. You might even see a sloth casually hanging out in one of its central plazas.

Santa Cruz,Bolivia - Travel Fan Art (10680284) - Fanpop

 

 

 

  • Tarija

Upon visiting Tarija, not far from the border with Argentina, many might wonder if they are still in Bolivia. This laid back, Mediterranean-style town features whitewashed colonial architecture, a thriving wine industry and a noticeable Argentine cultural influence.

Tarija - Wikipedia

 

 

  • Tupiza

Apart from being an alternative starting point for the Salar de Uyuni tour, Tupiza is also a terrific spot to spend a couple of days. Its surrounding badlands feature impressive canyons, rivers and valleys, which are perfect for exploring on a guided horseback tour. Reminiscent of the wild west, these are the lands where Butch Cassidy met his fateful end.

Tupiza/Bolivia - Foresta pietrificata - Picture of Tupiza Tours -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Potosi

The former economic center of the Spanish empire, Potosi used to be one of the biggest cities in the world due to its silver-rich Cerro Rico (Rich Mountain). These days, a visit to Potosi provides a fascinating insight into Spanish Colonialism and mining history. Many travelers join a guided tour to gain firsthand experience of the horrendous working conditions in the country’s most notorious mine.

Potosi, Bolivia: A city built on silver and surrounded by natural wonders

 

 

 

  • Sucre

Bolivia’s official capital and colonial centerpiece manages to charm even the most weary traveler. Its delightful array of whitewashed churches, government buildings, parks and monasteries entices many a visitor to stay longer than originally intended. It’s also the best place to learn Spanish in South America, with numerous high-quality yet inexpensive language schools to choose from.

Sucre, Bolivia: This elegant colonial city feels like a little slice of  Europe

 

 

 

  • Oruro

Oruro hosts one of the continent’s best carnival parades. Tens of thousands of intricately-dressed dancers strut their stuff down Oruro’s main streets to the infectious rhythm of exuberant marching bands. It’s a loud, outrageous and refreshingly unpretentious alternative to Rio de janeiro's carnival.

Oruro, Bolivia | World cities, City, Bolivia

 

 

 

  • La Cordillera Real

Meaning the ‘Royal Range’ in English, this spectacular Andean mountain range earned its name for one simple reason – it’s truly majestic. Every year, hordes of climbers come from all over the world to conquer the snowy peaks of this wondrous region.

With new model, Bolivia can better address a growing water crisis | SEI

 

 

 

  • Coroico

Just two hour’s drive from La Paz, Coroico’s relaxed way of life feels worlds away from the big city. Spend a day or two just kicking back and enjoying the stupendous views or exploring nearby rivers and waterfalls. There’s also some fantastic trekking in the region, including the famous three-day El Choro hike.

An Insider's Guide to Coroico, Bolivia

 

 

 

  • Sorata

Most travelers come to Sorata for its trekking, climbing and downhill mountain biking. But if you’re just looking to chill out for a bit, then Sorata’s the perfect place. This gorgeous little town enjoys a slow pace of life and impressive views of snowy mountains and lush forest valleys.

Illampu and Janq Uma Peaks (Sorata, Bolivia) - Travellerspoint Travel  Photography

 

 

 

  • Lake Titicaca

As one of the most historically significant places in the Andes, a trip to Lake Titicaca is a must. Grab a delicious plate of fresh trout on Copacabana’s lake shore before jumping on a ferry to the sacred Isla del Sol (Sun Island). A three-hour hike across the island passes numerous Inca ruins and takes in some spectacular lakeside views. Locals believe the Sun and the Moon were born here and, for many visitors, it’s not hard to see why.

4 activities for exploring the Bolivian Side of Lake Titicaca | Kuoda Travel

 

 

 

  • Madidi National Park

This wondrous National Park is internationally renowned for its incredible diversity. Over 1,200 species of bird call Madidi home (14 per cent of the world’s known bird species) as well as countless other mammals, reptiles and insects. Jungle treks, eco-lodges and animal safaris create the perfect opportunity to observe nature at its rawest.

Madidi National Park | Places around the world, Most beautiful places,  Beautiful places

 

 

 

  • Salar de Uyuni

Bolivia’s number one tourist attraction never fails to amaze. Salar de Uyuni, the world’s largest and highest salt flat, is conveniently surrounded by a throng of other natural wonders, including colorful lagoons, towering volcanoes, bubbling hot springs and steamy geysers. An absolute must while traveling through Bolivia.

How to Tour Bolivia's Salar de Uyuni

 

 

 

  • Toro Toro National Park

Toro Toro National Park has an impressive collection of well-preserved dinosaur footprints, some of which are mindbogglingly huge. If that doesn’t excite you, there’s also hikes through impressive canyons, bizarre animal-shaped rock formations and a fun caving experience.

WIT: Torotoro Bolivia - Why You Need to Visit Now - WITRAG Travel

 

 

 

  • Sajama National Park

If you really want to get away from it all, then Sajama is the place to go. This isolated National Park features a climbable dormant volcano, reflective lagoons, more llamas than you can poke a stick at, the world’s highest forest and some temperate hot springs to relax in after a long day exploring.

Sajama National park, Bolivia | We Love Mountains

 

 

 

  • Amboro National Park

This nature lover’s paradise is just a short drive away from the metropolis of Santa Cruz. The park offers plenty of superb hiking trails which take in cascading waterfalls, scenic viewpoints and an incredible variety of flora and fauna.

Amboró National Park

 

 

 

  • Samaipata

This pleasant little town nestled in a lush valley is a favorite of retired expats and international tourists alike. It boasts a temperate climate, close proximity to Amboro National Park, an ancient pre-Colombian fortress and a fantastic waterfall and swimming hole.

Samaipata - Bolivia's Most Laid Back Town | Tales From The Lens

 

 

 

  • Tiwanaku

As one of the most important pre-Colombian sites in the Americas, a visit to Tiwanaku is a must for any history buff. Set under the majestic Cordillera Real mountain range, Tiwinaku features an impressive number of beautifully crafted sculptures, gigantic stone building blocks and the mysterious, megalithic stone arch known as El Puerta del Sol (The Gate of the Sun). Take the time to peruse the onsite museum to learn more about this fascinating ancient culture.

Puma Punku at Tiwanaku, Ancient Ruins in Bolivia | Otherworld Mystery |  Ancient ruins, Ancient aliens, Ancient history

 

 

 

  • Rurrenabaque

Rurrenabaque is a humid little jungle town on the edge of Madidi National Park. Scores of adventurers brave the arduous 18-hour bus ride (or opt for a 45-minute flight) from La Paz to visit this renowned Amazonian eco-tourism hub. A three-day pampas tour utilizes dugout canoes to provide a floating wildlife safari that is arguably the best in South America.

File:Rurrenabaque ciudad.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

  • Biking in Bolivia's Death Road

The original inventor of the “World’s Most Dangerous Road” ride and one of the most popular tour companies in the country, Gravity Assisted Mountain Biking have been instrumental in establishing fun and safe mountain biking in Bolivia for over 10 years. Having been featured guiding and riding the road in a multitude of magazines, newspapers, TV shows and blogs, it’s easy to see why Gravity is the #1 company for those wishing to experience Death Road while living to tell the tale.

Bolivia: Biking The 'Death Road' In The Andes - GoNOMAD Travel

 

 

 

  • Zipline

If braving The World's Most Dangerous Road wasn’t scary enough, travelers can now push their adventurous side to the limit with a ride along one of Bolivia’s best ziplines. Developed in 2010 to build tourism in the Yungas region, Zzip the Flying Fox is a community minded business providing travelers with sky-high thrills over the Amazon. Located in the tranquil town of Yolosa (the finishing point of all Death Road tours) Zzip features a 1500 meter zip line that sees you whizzing rapidly along cables suspended above a valley or forest through the use of a harness and pulley system attached to the cables. Operating daily from 9am to 11am and 1pm to 5pm, Zzip the Flying Fox is a high-quality, safe, not to mention fun, activity perfect for those seeking a thrill in Bolivia.

Zzip The Flying Fox: Bolivia's Most Exciting Zipline - La Paz Bolivia

 

 

 

  • Sandboarding

Hurtling down sand dunes is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about things to do in Bolivia. Just one hour from the city of Santa Cruz however, is a beautiful, yet rarely visited natural desert, ideal for thrill-seeking activities such as this. Featuring 3000 hectares of soaring sand dunes, it’s no surprise that Lomas de Arena is becoming a popular destination in South America for sandboarding. Those with a need for speed can whiz down 12 meter sand dunes either standing up or sitting down – any style you choose, the fun is guaranteed! The protected park also provides nature lovers great opportunities for birding and wildlife watching. The surrounding tropical forests and savannah are home to over 286 species of birds not to mention other fascinating species including sloths, marmosets, caimans, capybaras, monkeys, deer, armadillos, mountain lions, pumas and many, many more. Bolivia’s answer to the Sahara, Lomas de Arena is an adrenaline filled-oasis where travelers can go to learn, discover and experience some of the country’s finest natural wonders.

Lomas De Arena Sandboarding And Wildlife Tour In Bolivia 2

 

 

 

  • Skiing & Snowboarding

Snow enthusiasts traveling to Bolivia are in for a treat with this one-of-a-kind adventure allowing skiers and snowboarders of all levels to experience the majestic Bolivian Andes while ripping it up on beautiful 5000m+ glaciers tucked in the mountains surrounding La Paz. The ultimate back-country adventure with all the gorgeous views and high altitude fun you can only get in the Andes, this is one experience that will take your breath away.

snow rush 5

 

 

 

  • Salt Flat Tours 

If you’re planning a trip to Bolivia, chances are you’ll want to experience the world’s largest salt flat: Salar de Uyuni. Visiting this popular destination is without doubt an unforgettable journey, providing a transient glimpse into the surreal realm of Bolivia’s southwest. The following is an overview of what you can expect from a tour of Salar de Uyuni, outlining all you need to know about experiencing one of the most spectacular places on earth!

red planet sal flats tour uyuni bolivia

 

 

 

  • Abseiling &rap Jumping

Ever wanted to scale a building Spider-Man style? Established in 2012 by the founder of Gravity Assisted Mountain Biking, Urban Rush gives thrill-seekers the chance to jump down a 17-story building, experiencing an adrenaline rush with a view to die for.

urban rush bolivia 2

 

 

 

  • Hiking Sica Sica

Sica Sica offers panoramic views over the city, and climbing it is about a 2hr round trip from the center of town, making it a great way to spend a sunny morning (or afternoon). The climb itself is challenging but attainable and would be suitable for anyone with a moderate fitness level or higher. There is a single path up to the summit, which can be found just off Avenida del Ejercito. If you’re coming from the centre of town, take Calle Grau all the way to its end (up and over the steps and keep going until you reach Calle Polanco). Turn left on Calle Polanco and Avenida del Ejercito is your first right (just a few metres down from the end of Calle Grau). Follow Avenida del Ejercito all the way to the first roundabout. The road to the left runs all the way to the summit of the hill. The path itself can become muddy and difficult after rain, so it is best hiked after several rain-free days. Also, please be aware that stray dogs have been sighted along the Sica Sica track, something to take note of, especially if you’re hiking alone.

Sica Sica Hill

 

 

 

  • Rock Climbing on Sica Sica

Sica-Sica is also a popular place for rock-climbing due to its proximity to the city and the presence of several rock-faces with routes suitable for a range of skill levels. Most climbs take place on two adjacent walls of a crag located on the western side of Sica Sica. Each wall is 25m high and has 7 routes. The easier wall, the “slab”, has a mix of cracks, jugs and crimpers (small, challenging holds), while the harder wall has an overhang on every route. The slab ranges in grade from 5.6-5.9 (US), while the overhang ranges from 5.7-5.11a. For advanced rock-climbers, there is Garzilazo, a 25m sandstone crag in the valley below Sica Sica. Eight routes ranging in difficulty from 5.10a to 5.12b.

The best outdoor things to do in Sucre, Bolivia | Czick on the road

 

 

 

  • Trekking to Maragua Crater from Sucre​

During our stay in Sucre we went on a two day hike to the Maragua Crater, a beautiful area just outside of Sucre. We weighed up the offerings from several other tour companies including Condor Trekking and Joy Ride Tours. In the end we settled on Jaku Trekking as they were slightly cheaper and offered a similar route / experience.

 

 

 

  • Paragliding in Bolivia

Joy Ride Tours offer tandem paragliding tours from Sucre. The paragliding flight takes place in the skies above zona de Viña Pampa, 1.5hrs from Sucre. The take-off point is 500 meters above the landing site on the banks of the River Chico, giving a minimum flight time of 10 minutes. With favorable air currents, the flight can last up to 20 minutes. The tour includes a sandwich, fruit, a bottle of water and a bar of chocolate. At the end of the flight you will be given a commemorative flight certificate. You’ll also be treated to a free celebratory drink at Joy Ride Cafe.

 

12 of the Best Things To Do In Bolivia - Kanoo Tours | Paragliding, Bolivia,  La paz

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN BOLIVIA

 

  • Gustu, La Paz

Meaning flavor in Quechua, Gustu offers exactly that. After opening in 2012 to rave reviews from renowned publications such as the New York Times and the Guardian, Gustu has become the undisputed king of Bolivia’s fine dining scene. The brainchild of Claus Meyer (of Noma fame), Gustu prides itself on serving locally-sourced ingredients, while adding a creative twist to traditional Bolivian fare. More than just a restaurant, sister NGO the Melting Pot seeks out promising young stars from disadvantaged backgrounds in El Alto and trains them up to work in the restaurant. Although expensive for Bolivia at 410 BOB (US$60) for a degustation menu, you won’t find better gourmet cuisine anywhere in the country. Still not convinced? Gustu was ranked number 14 in Latin America’s Top 50 Restaurants, the only entry from Bolivia, and head chef Kamilla Seidler received the honor of being declared Latin America’s Best Female Chef.

Gustu Restaurant La Paz – Aracari Travel

 

 

 

  • El Fogón del Gringo, Tarija

Considering Tarija is so close to Argentina, it’s no surprise the city whips up the juiciest asado (BBQ meat) in the country. The best of the best can be found at El Fogón del Gringo, where delectable Argentine meat is served alongside a first-rate salad bar. Some of the steaks are as big as 14oz (400g), so be sure to order a bottle of the superb local wine to help wash it down.

received_1879465235405373_large.jpg - Picture of El Fogon de Gringo, Tarija  - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Carla’s Garden Pub, Coroico

Run by a friendly Dutch expat in the peaceful, subtropical town of Coroico, Carla’s is a topnotch resto-pub and tourist hangout. As the name suggests, this delightful spot just down the stairs from the main plaza is focused around a lush garden, complete with hammocks and stunning views of the valley below. The menu offers a great selection of tasty European and Bolivian dishes, and excellent machine-made coffee. During the evenings, it’s the best place in town to suck down a few cold ones and meet some other travelers.

Lindo lugar - Picture of Carla's Garden Pub & Restaurant, Coroico -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Minuteman Revolutionary Pizza, Uyuni

Most tourists get out of Uyuni as quickly as possible after their salt flats tours, avoiding an overnight stay at all costs. But there is at least one good reason to stick around – the chance to eat a truly revolutionary pizza. Located inside Toñito Hotel and run by a long-term expat from Boston and his Bolivian wife, Minuteman serves up some of the best pizza in South America. Creative toppings like spicy llama and pesto adorn wonderfully doughy bases which can even be ordered gluten free. As Bolivia’s most longstanding tourist-orientated pizzeria, Minuteman is a must in Uyuni.

photo0.jpg - Picture of Minuteman Revolutionary Pizza, Uyuni - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • La Cocina, Samaipata

Easily the most casual eatery on the list, La Cocina is more of a Friday-night-takeaway than a silver-service-fine dining kind of place. Run by a young Turkish dude, La Cocina serves up amazingly tasty snacks such as hamburgers, quesadillas, falafels and shawarma, with optional deliciously crispy fries that come in three different flavors. The major selling point here is that the staff make all their own bread every day, which happens to be among the best dough in the country. Scoring an amazing dinner for under 30 BOB (US$3.80) makes La Cocina Samaipata’s number one in our book.

An Insider's Guide to Samaipata, Bolivia

 

 

 

  • La Taverna, Sucre

Offering up exquisite French cuisine in a romantic though unpretentious setting, La Taverna is the best bet for a fine evening meal in white city. Although there is a wide selection of dishes to choose from, the steaks are the specialty here, cooked to perfection and accompanied with a creative range of garnishes and sauces. Given it is a French restaurant, an extensive wine list is par for the course.

LA TAVERNE, Sucre - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Las Velas, Isla del Sol

Tucked away behind a forest on a hill above Yumani is the island’s best restaurant. Las Velas (“the candles”) is run by an internationally trained Bolivian native who cooks up a superb selection of pizzas and pastas as well as the local specialty, grilled trout. There is no electricity connected to his remote little restaurant, so candles are used to light the room instead, which is just as well, as this creates an intimate atmosphere for travelers to get to know each other over a game of cards and a few bottles of red. But be warned that the food can take up to two hours to arrive (the owners have to cook in the dark), so get there early, order straight away and step outside to watch the sunset from one of the best miradors (viewpoints) on the Island.

A Guide To Isla del Sol, Lake Titicaca | Bolivian Life

 

 

 

  • El Nomadico, Rurrenabaque

Famous for their legendary fish curry served in a banana leaf, El Nomadico is a must for those visiting the jungle town of Rurrenabaque. Run by a young Australian guy and his Bolivian wife, the restaurant also offers awesome steaks, lasagnas and a variety of Bolivian dishes during their lunch time specials. With a fine selection of cocktails and guaranteed ice-cold beer, it’s a great place to chill out and have a few after coming back from a jungle adventure.

Sensational! - Review of El Nomadico Bar Restaurant, Rurrenabaque, Bolivia  - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • La Cantonata, Cochabamba

A longstanding Cochabamba institution, La Cantonata has been serving up the city’s best steak, seafood and pasta since 1988. The place epitomizes elegance and old-world charm, featuring white table cloths, attentive waistcoat-wearing waiters and candlelit tables. This cozy and intimate atmosphere makes La Cantonata the place for that special romantic evening.

La Cantonata

 

 

 

  • Sach’a Rest, Santa Cruz

Since opening its doors in May 2016, Sach’a Rest has been turning heads in Santa Cruz for its creative fusion dishes that draw upon Nikkei and Mediterranean influences. Seafood is a big focus here, with ceviche sushi and fish chicharrón among the most popular dishes. With a modern and hip décor that features plenty of funky artwork, it’s fast becoming the top place to be seen for Santa Cruz’ young and wealthy socialites.

Sach'a Huaska, Santa Cruz - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN BOLIVIA

 

  • Walisuma -  arts & crafts in La Paz

For a one-of-a-kind souvenir head to Walisuma, which works with 59 different Bolivian artisans. Star items include gorgeous (and ultrasoft) alpaca and vicuña textiles made with natural dyes. There are also quinoa soaps, flavored Uyuni salts and designer sweaters. Prices match the quality.

No photo description available.

 

 

 

  • Mercado 16 de Julio - Market in La Paz

For an excellent market experience don’t miss the massive Mercado 16 de Julio, which stretches for many blocks along the main thoroughfare and across Plaza 16 de Julio. This shopaholic’s paradise has absolutely everything, from food and electronics, to vehicles and animals, all at reasonable prices. You’ll have to fight your way through the crowds, though. (Warning: watch your wallet in both senses of the phrase).

16 de Julio Market, La Paz

 

 

 

  • Mercado Campesino - Market in Sucre

A fascinating, sprawling market that's easy to get lost in, wandering row after row of goods from mundane everyday products to traditional foods. It might appear chaotic at first, but like a department store, it's organized by categories. Saturday is busiest. Stalls on the streets stay open later than the main building, some to around 10pm.

Bolivia Shopping - Markets in Bolivia | Bolivia, South america, Marketing

 

 

 

 

  • Centro Artesanal Moxos - Arts & Crafts in Trinidad

Local Beni crafts, including weaving, woodwork and masks, are sold at the Centro Artesanal Moxos, 300m southwest of town by the cemetery. Look out for the pifano, an indigenous flute made from the wing bone of the jabiru stork using a technique more than 1000 years old – it’s the staple instrument of the unique Moxos music.

Good arts and crafts market and nice garden - Review of FEIMA - Feira de  Artesanato, Flores e Gastronomica, Maputo, Mozambique - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Artecampo - Arts & Crafts in Santa Cruz

The best place to find fine artesanías (locally handcrafted items), this store provides an outlet for the work of 1000 rural cruceña women and their families. The truly inspired and innovative pieces include leatherwork, hammocks, weavings, handmade paper, greeting cards and lovely natural-material lampshades.

ArteCampo (Santa Cruz) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with  Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Inca Pallay - Textiles in Sucre

This weavers' and artisans' cooperative has an impressive array of high-quality handmade crafts, not all from the Sucre area. Prices are high, but this is the store that returns the highest percentage to the weavers themselves. You can sometimes see weavers at work on the patio.

Inca Pallay Shop (Sucre) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with  Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Madres de Clarisa Convent - Food & Drinks in Coroico & Yolosa

The Madres de Clarisa Convent sells homemade cakes, 10 types of creatively flavored biscuits and ridiculously sweet wines. You’ll find it down the steps off the southwest corner of the plaza (just across from Carla's Pub); ring the bell to get into the shop area.

HOTEL GLORIA COROICO 3* (Bolivia) - from US$ 53 | BOOKED

 

 

 

  • Chocolates Para Ti 

It's moved next door into the toy store, but this beloved shop still offers a wonderful selection of Sucre's most delicious chocolates, wrapped with love to take home. See if you can get back to your hotel before they melt in the Trinidad heat.

Soy Sucre

 

 

 

  • The Writer's Coffee

A gorgeous old-school bookstore with floor-to-ceiling shelves and great titles on local art and history. There's a chilled-out coffee shop in the front corner where you can dig in to your purchases or catch up on wi-fi.

The Writers Coffee - Picture of The Writers Coffee, La Paz - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Centro Cultural Tacana

The Centro Cultural Tacana has a handicrafts store and celebrates the Tacana people’s cosmovision. It's located on the southwest side of the main plaza in San Buenaventura.

Colca Tacana · Macrame Necklace — I T A Y A · A R T E

 

 

  • La Vinoteca

The best shop to pick up a bottle of the local vino, singani or other specialty food products. Carlos, the owner, is happy to open bottles to try by the glass.

La Vinoteca in Chile | My Guide Chile

 

 

 

  • Spitting Llama Bookstore & Outfitter

A great collection of secondhand books in English, German and French, as well as plenty of Lonely Planet titles. Also sells trekking maps and camping equipment.

The Spitting Llama

 

 

SUNNUNTAI, 04. LOKAKUUTA 2020
ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

What to See and Do on the Caribbean Island of Antigua

Antigua is one of the 2 major islands that make up the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda. Ringed with coral reefs, the island is known for its many sandy beaches. Antigua's corrugated coasts cradle hundreds of perfect little coves lapped by beguiling enamel-blue water, while the sheltered bays have provided refuge for everyone from Admiral Nelson to buccaneers and yachties. If you can tear yourself away from that towel, you'll discover that there’s a distinct English accent to this island. You'll find it in the bustling capital of St John's, in salty-glamorous English Harbour, and in the historical forts and other vestiges of the colonial past. Yet, Antigua is also quintessential Caribbean, full of candy-colored villages, a rum-infused mellowness and engaging locals who'll greet you with wide smiles.

Antigua's smaller sister island Barbuda was devastated by Hurricane Maria in 2017 and is still busy rebuilding, though its extraordinary beaches were unaffected, meaning that travelers wanting to lounge on white sand, snorkel around pristine reefs and watch the famous frigate birds nesting should not hesitate to make the journey here. Antigua is a convenient travel destination with plenty to do on land and sea.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

The best time to visit Antigua is from May to November, the island's offseason. Rates are cheapest at this time, and although there is a slight threat of hurricanes, the weather rarely escapes 80 degrees. You'll encounter less rain between December and April, but rates are more expensive and crowds are abundant.

 

December-February

The dry season begins in January, and though there are sometimes droughts, the sunshine creates one of the most pleasant climates in the Caribbean. But you'll have to make flight and hotel reservations several months in advance – this is the peak tourist season.

March-April

Antigua is often overlooked by spring break vacationers, so it's perfect for dodging coeds. However, the cruise crowds won't taper off until the end of April, meaning that hotel rates remain relatively high.

May-November

Hotels tend to offer bargain rates any time after April, especially on package deals. But many of the smaller hotels close for at least part of the time between August and October. June to November is also hurricane season, and although Antigua doesn't see too much rain, you should pack your umbrellas to be safe. Keep in mind that this area of the Caribbean has unfortunately not been spared from hurricanes in the past: In September 2017, Barbuda suffered severe damage from Hurricane Irma.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

With direct flights and easy connections from all our main source markets in the US, Canada, UK, Europe and the Caribbean, you will find yourself in the picturesque Caribbean twin islands of Antigua and Barbuda, in no time.  British Airways (London Gatwick), Condor (Frankfurt, Germany), Virgin Atlantic (London Gatwick), XL (London Gatwick) You can also connect to Paris (Air France) and Amsterdam (KLM) via St Maarten. 

By Plane - VC Bird International Airport (ANU) is about five miles outside of the Antiguan capital of St. John's. The island is also a major port of call for Caribbean cruise liners, and a sea ferry ties it to Montserrat.

By cruise ship - Many tourists come to Antigua and Barbuda via cruise ships. On Antigua, passengers enjoy a short walk through Heritage Quay into the heart of St. John's.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

The best way to get around Antigua is by car or taxi. Having a car can save you money, especially on longer visits, but the island can be difficult to navigate due to bumpy dirt roads and hilly areas that flood easily. A handful of rental agencies, including Alamo, Avis and Hertz, have locations in the arrival hall of Antigua's V.C. Bird International Airport (ANU), located on the northern part of the island just outside of the town of Osbourn. Travel to neighboring islands by air on LIAT charter planes or by sea aboard a cruise or a ferry, such as the Barbuda Express.

 

Taxi - This is one of the best ways to explore the island, since the drivers are happy to double as tour guides (with the hope of a slightly larger tip). Although, this arrangement can be convenient, it can also be expensive. Get a price quote before committing to one driver. Taxis can usually be found near popular attractions and the cruise port in St. John. Barry Taxi and Tour and Roger Taxi Tours are two well-reviewed companies.

Bus - Although there are bus services on the island, they are largely unreliable. Buses often turn out to be 15-passenger minivans with colorful paint jobs, and the bumpy roads make for a rough ride.

Car - Rental cars are another popular mode of transportation, but you'll have to get an Antiguan driving permit. They can be issued by most car rental agencies and require a valid driver's license from home, as well as an additional $20 fee. Don't forget that Antiguans drive on the left. Popular car rental agencies include Drive-A-Matic Car Rentals and Pete's Taxi and Car Rentals. To avoid costly fee, past visitors recommended arranging your car rental in advance and picking it up upon arrival at the airport instead of renting from your hotel after you arrive.

 

 

 

 

 


WHERE TO STAY IN ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

 

  • Cocobay Resort - All Inclusive - Adults Only

This all-inclusive St. John’s resort is located on 10 acres and overlooks Ffreyes Bay. Jolly Harbour Golf Club is 10 km from the resort. Airy cottages feature a private balcony with views of the sea, gardens or resort. Private beach access, a full-service spa and an outdoor pool are available at the resort. Live entertainment is presented on select nights each week. Cocobay Resort offers snorkelling, kayaking and hobie cat sailing gear. Spacious cottages at Resort Cocobay include a fridge and coffee-making facilities. Wooden floors and wood beam ceilings are featured. Each cottage offers plenty of light and includes mosquito nets. Rafters restaurant serves a buffet-style breakfast and lunch while an a la carte dinner is available. Sheer rocks Restaurant is open for dinner and features private pavilions. The resort provides a weekly cocktail party. The resort is 45 minutes’ drive from V C Bird International Airport. Nearby beaches include Valley Church Beach and Little Ffreyes Beach.

Cocobay Resort, a boutique hotel in Antigua - Page

 

 

 

  • The Escape at Nonsuch Bay - ALL INCLUSIVE

The Escape at Nonsuch Bay - ALL INCLUSIVE in Gaynors provides adults-only accommodation with a restaurant, a bar and a garden. Among the various facilities of this property are a private beach area, water sports facilities and a terrace. Free private parking is available and the resort also features car hire for guests who want to explore the surrounding area. At the resort, the rooms have a wardrobe, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. At he Escape at Nonsuch Bay - ALL INCL, all rooms have a seating area. Guests at the accommodation will be able to enjoy activities in and around Gaynors, like snorkelling.

Nonsuch Bay Resort - ANTIGUA pure and simple - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Antigua Yacht Club Marina Resort

Located in Falmouth Harbour, this waterfront resort is 3 km from the panoramic views of Shirley Heights Lookout. It features an on-site spa, a fitness center, and rooms with a flat-screen TV. Antigua Yacht Club Marina Resort boasts bright rooms with Indonesian furniture and ceiling fans. Guests can relax on the private balcony, boasting views of the garden or the marina. Massage services are available at this Antigua resort. Concierge services and a gift shop are also offered. St. John’s, the capital of Antigua, is a 20-minute drive from the Antigua Marina Yacht Club Resort. VC Bird International Airport is 22 km from the property.

The surrounding neighborhood or a neighborhood close to the resort

 

 

 

  • Nonsuch Bay Resort

Featuring lush, tropical gardens and a private beach, this Antigua resort stands next to the tranquil waters of Nonsuch Bay. Water sports and in-room spa treatments are also available. The bright, Colonial-style rooms of Nonsuch Bay Resort offer beautiful hardwood floors and French windows. A flat-screen TV, iPod docking station and patio are also included. The resort features sailboats and sailing lessons. Kitesurfing and kayaking can also be arranged on the protected waters of Nonsuch Bay. Guests can explore the beaches and reef of Green Island. The Bay at Nonsuch Restaurant serves a la carte meals with menus reflecting Caribbean, Asian and world cuisine. The club lounge offers a relaxing spot for drinks and light snacks. The Harmony Hall Plantation House is less than 1 km from Nonsuch Bay. The V C Bird International Airport is 20 km away.

 

 

 

  • Hawksbill by Rex Resorts - Adults Only - All Inclusive

Set among 37 acres of tropical gardens, this beach-front adult only resort boasts all-inclusive recreation options that include sunfish sailing and snorkelling. The Five Islands, Antigua resort features on-site dining, 4 beaches and an outdoor pool. Views of gardens or the Caribbean Sea are offered in all units at Hawksbill All-Inclusive by Rex Resorts. The simply styled rooms feature light colours; they include a mini-fridge, coffee facilities and an en-suite bath. At Hawksbill All-Inclusive, guests can enjoy the open-air buffet at The Tamarind Tree for breakfast and dinner. The reservation-only Il Vigento Su Mare specialises in lobster and pasta dishes while the Sea Grape Bar & Grill offers light snacks and drinks beachside. Guests can relax at the on-site spa with a massage or play at one of the on-site tennis courts. Souvenir shops and car rentals are available. This property is just 14 km from Jolly Harbour Golf Club and is less than 10 minutes’ drive from St. John’s. VC Bird International airport is within 20 minutes’ drive away.

 

 

 

  • Verandah Resort and Spa All Inclusive

Located in Saint John’s, Antigua, the family-friendly Verandah Resort and Spa All Inclusive features a spa, 3 swimming pools and an 18-hole mini-golf course. The spacious Caribbean-style suites have a private patio or balcony. With Caribbean architecture and décor, the suites offer a flat-screen TV and a seating area with sofa bed. A microwave, fridge and coffee-making facilities are included. Non-motorized watersports such as sailing, kayaking, windsurfing and snorkelling are included. The Verandah Resort also includes a well-equipped gym and tennis courts. Nicole’s fine-dining restaurant offers Caribbean-inspired cuisine. Casual dining can be found at the Buccaneer restaurant, which serves light dishes and an à la carte menu. Devil’s Bridge is a short walk from from the Verandah Resort, while the Antigua rainforest canopy tour is 17.5 km away.

 

 

 

  • St. James's Club Resort - All Inclusive

This 4-star Antigua resort boasts 2 private beaches along the Caribbean Sea and Mamora Bay. It features 4 restaurants, 6 tennis courts and a full-service spa with hair salon. Overlooking the ocean and gardens, each spacious room has a private terrace or balcony. Cable TV and an in-room safe are included. The rooms feature tile floors and tropical décor. The state-of-the-art gym has floor-to-ceiling windows with sea views. St. James Club boasts 4 outdoor pools, including a children’s pool and a 3-tiered tranquility pool. St. James Club All Inclusive has an on-site Watersports Center. Free windsurfing, sailing or kayaking lessons and equipment are available. The Billiards Center has pool and ping pong tables. Rainbow Garden restaurant offers a spacious dining room and wrap-around patio. The Docksider features panoramic ocean views and Caribbean-inspired dishes. Both beachside bars serve a signature rum punch. Antigua rainforest canopy tour is 20 minutes’ drive away.

A bird's-eye view of St. James's Club Resort - All Inclusive

 

 

 

  • Sugar Ridge Resort

Set on a hillside overlooking Jolly Harbour and the Caribbean Sea, Sugar Ridge offers a beach shuttle, 2 outdoor pools and an Aveda spa. Each room has a furnished verandah with spectacular views. Each block of 4 rooms has a private entrance. Decorated in natural tones, the air-conditioned rooms include a four-poster bed, free Wi-Fi, an LCD TV and an iPod dock. Sugar Ridge Resort has a gourmet restaurant, which offers fusion cuisine and incredible views of the bay and nearby islands. The lively Sugar Club serves light meals, including pizzas, tapas and sushi. Electric buggies can be hired from reception to explore the island. Just 600 m away, Jolly Harbour offers regular diving and fishing boat trips. Antigua’s capital, St. John’s, is a 25-minute drive away.

The building in which the resort is located

 

 

 

  • The Cove Suites at Blue Waters

Located on a cliff top overlooking the Caribbean Sea, and situated on 17 acres of tropical gardens is this 4-star luxury resort. It boasts 4 infinity pools, 2 white sand beaches, gourmet dining and a full-service spa. Cove Suites are located in 4 separate villas and each villa boasts its own private infinity pool. Every suite features an over-sized terrace or balcony with panoramic ocean views. There is a separate living area, flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations and large bathroom with a free-standing soaking tub. Amenities include state-of-the-art fitness centre, outdoor tennis courts, on-site water sports centre, full service spa, 4 bars and 3 à la carte restaurants. Gourmet entrées are served in the elegant, air-conditioned Bartley's Restaurant. On-site activities include early morning walks, sailing and cooking classes. Helicopter tours and sail-boat excursions can be arranged. Palm Restaurant offers Caribbean alfresco dining and The Pelican Bar features nightly entertainment.

A bird's-eye view of The Cove Suites at Blue Waters

 

 

 

  • Tamarind Hills

Set in Jolly Harbour, 1.1 km from Turner's Beach, Tamarind Hills offers accommodation with an outdoor swimming pool, free private parking, a garden and barbecue facilities. Staff on site can arrange airport transfers. Featuring a private bathroom, rooms at the resort also feature free WiFi. Tamarind Hills offers a terrace. The area is popular for hiking, and car hire is available at the accommodation.

Ocean View Villas and Apartments in Tamarind Hills|Luxury Ocean Homes

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN ANTUGUA & BARBUDA

Former British colonies in the eastern Caribbean, Antigua and Barbuda boast some of the most ravishing beaches in the world. Antigua proudly proclaims it has "a beach for everyday of the year," and Barbuda, Antigua's sleepy sister island, is also blessed with some pristine stretches of pink-tinged sand sprinkled with chic resorts. Not surprisingly, many movie stars and moguls jet to these islands to swim, surf, sun, and swoon on the dazzling shores.

Antigua draws the majority of visitors. Many arrive at the cruise ship port in the colorful capital of St. John's where shopping, museums, and historic buildings are the prime draws. The island preserves its history as a strategic naval port, and animal lovers can swim with friendly stingrays. Peaceful Barbuda has less than two percent of the islands' combined population. Seclusion seekers and nature lovers cherish the tranquility, while birders love the fabled frigate sanctuary. Water sports abound on both islands; diving, swimming, fishing, sailing, and windsurfing are all popular, and golfers will find a couple of scenic courses on Antigua.

 

 

  • Half Moon Bay, Antigua

At the southeastern end of Antigua, tranquil Half Moon Bay is fringed by one of the Caribbean's best beaches. Protected by a reef, this idyllic crescent of fine white sand and azure sea, backed by natural foliage, offers excellent snorkeling on calm days. When the wind is up, the surf can be rough. A small restaurant serves snacks just off the beach. Note that the beach is difficult to find, so a GPS will come in handy.

Location: Southeast coast, Antigua

Home

 

 

  • Stingray City, Antigua

If you have a lifelong fear of stingrays, this fun face-to-face adventure a five-minute speedboat ride off the east coast of Antigua, should banish those fears forever. Stingray City is a shallow pool with a sandy bottom amid a tropical reef, where hundreds of friendly southern stingrays glide through the crystal-clear waters waiting to be fed by visitors. Depending on your comfort level, you can stand, swim, or snorkel with them, and after your encounter, you can explore the surrounding coral reefs. Feeling their smooth, satiny bodies brush against your skin is a highlight of this exhilarating adventure. The trip to Stingray City is one of the most popular things to do in Antigua.

Cruise ship excursion - Review of Stingray City, Antigua, Antigua and  Barbuda - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • 17 Mile Beach, Barbuda

Those who stroll Barbuda's 17 Mile Beach, will probably never see a more ravishing stretch of sand, nor another footprint. Lapped by pale aqua seas, this stunning stretch of pink-tinged sand separates the Barbuda lagoon from the Caribbean Sea, and pleases even the most jaded beach connoisseurs. Facilities are few, if non-existent, so you should bring your own supplies. 

17-Mile Beach (Barbuda) - 2020 All You Need to Know Before You Go (with  Photos) - Barbuda, Antigua and Barbuda | Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Nelson's Dockyard National Park, Antigua

One of Antigua's most popular tourist attractions, Nelson's Dockyard National Park, in English Harbour, is home to Antigua's former 18th-century British Naval Dockyard (inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List in July, 2016) as well as restored historic buildings and some of the island's best nature trails. Nelson's Dockyard is the only continuously operating Georgian dockyard in the world. The restored marina, with beautiful old stone warehouses, encompasses hotels, restaurants, shops, galleries, and museums. Both the Admiral's House Museum and Dockyard Museum trace the site's history from the 17th century to the present.

After touring the Dockyard, you can enjoy panoramic island views from the ruins of Fort Shirley, perched on the hilltop at Shirley Heights, or Fort Berkeley, at the west entrance to the harbor. The park is also home to 18th-century Clarence House, originally built for the future King William IV, as well as the Dow's Hill Interpretation Centre, along the Lookout Trail near Shirley Heights.

Antigua: Historic Lord Nelson's Dockyard National Park 2020 - St John's

 

 

 

  • Dickenson Bay, Antigua

In the far north of Antigua, Dickenson Bay is one of the most popular tourist destinations on the island. Fronted by a long stretch of white sand beach lined with resorts and alfresco restaurants, the bay is great for swimming and offers the spectrum of water sports. Activity booths are sprinkled along the beach. The bay is also the hub for Antigua's windsurfing scene.

Dickenson Bay Beach in St. Johns #Antigua #travel | Cruise vacation,  Resort, Vacation trips

 

 

 

  • St. John's, Antigua

St. John's, the capital city and cruise ship port of Antigua and Barbuda, is a kaleidoscope of candy-hued colonial cottages and market stalls piled high with tropical fruits and flowers. Looming above the skyline are the white neo-Baroque towers of St. John's Cathedral, one of the city's most distinctive buildings. It is currently undergoing a thorough restoration. For an overview of the island's history, head to the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda in the 18th-century former Court House. Shopping is also excellent in St. John's. Duty-free shops abound at Heritage Quay, souvenir stalls beckon from touristy Redcliffe Quay, and the lively harborside public markets are the place to be on Fridays and Saturdays. For city and harbor views visit the ruins of 18th-century Fort James and Fort Barrington, built to protect St. John's from the French.

Visit St John's in Antigua with Cunard

 

 

 

  • 7 Devil's Bridge: Indian Town National Park, Antigua

Along the rugged northeast coast, the dramatic scenery of Indian Town National Park features the natural limestone Devil's Bridge, sculpted over the centuries by the pounding surf. At high tide, waves force geysers of water through blowholes in the nearby rock. The park also offers some rewarding hikes and excellent birding. More than 36 avian species roost in the park among the acacia trees, while the eastern point of the park is believed to have been an Arawak campsite.

Location: Northeast shore, Antigua

A complete guide to sailing in Antigua: Part two - The top places to visit  in Antigua - Dream Yacht Charter UK

 

 

 

  • Museum of Antigua and Barbuda

The Museum of Antigua and Barbuda traces the history of these islands from their geological origins to political independence in 1981. Housed in the museum is a full-scale replica of an Arawak dwelling, as well as pottery, weaving, tools, and exhibits on the islands' different ecosystems. The museum is located in the former 18th-century Courthouse in St. John's.

Museum of Antigua and Barbuda vs Shirley Heights | TripExpert

 

 

 

  • Fig Tree Drive

Along Antigua's southern coast, Fig Tree Drive winds through rainforest, farmlands, and fishing villages. This picturesque drive offers a glimpse of local life. Banana trees (called "figs" by the locals), mango trees, and coconut palms dot the landscape, as well as the ruins of sugar mills. Look for the roadside stands selling fresh-picked fruit. Along the route, the Fig Tree Studio Art Gallery sells vibrant local art and zipline rainforest tours are nearby.

ROAD TRIP - FIG TREE DRIVE - ANTIGUA - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Frigate Bird Sanctuary, Barbuda

Barbuda's Frigate Bird Sanctuary is a haven for birders. Accessible only by boat, the bird sanctuary lies in Barbuda's northwest lagoon and is home to one of the largest nesting colonies of frigate birds in the Caribbean. These large sea birds are known for their bright red gullets and one-and-a-half meter wingspan. The reserve also attracts about 150 other species of birds such as herons, cormorants, and pelicans.

Antigua to Saint Martin… Cowabunga loses his erection | Backpack Of  Cowabunga

 

 

 

  • Darby Cave, Barbuda

Darby Cave, caused by dissolution of the limestone, is one of Barbuda's most intriguing natural features. Although it is often described as a cave, the site is actually a sinkhole more than 100 meters in diameter. In contrast to the dry surrounding brush, the lush vegetation flourishing inside resembles a rainforest with ferns, tall palmetto palms, and thick lianas lacing around the tree trunks. Many birds can be spotted amid the foliage. Dripping water has also created stalagmites under the overhang.

Barbuda Caves – Visit Antigua & Barbuda

 

 

 

  • Martello Tower, Barbuda

On the beach at River, a few miles south of the village, Martello Tower (River Fort), was built by the British in the early 19th century on the site of a previous fort that was probably constructed by the Spanish. Today the thick stone walls and gun platform of this small defensive fort are mostly intact, and the ruins are attached to the remains of the previous fort. The tower is the highest building in Barbuda and an important landmark on the island.

Martello Tower Barbuda: The Island's Strongest Structure (With images) |  Barbuda, Tower, Pink sand beach

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

 

  • Catherine's Cafe Plage

Downright fancy for a beachside restaurant, delightful Catherine's overlooks the boats of Falmouth Bay and Pigeon Beach's shimmering sands. Hosts Claudine and Guillaume regale expats, yachties and locals with mouthwatering French fare from a stylish-casual cottage with a long bar and lounge chairs in the sand. It's a great lunch spot and especially busy for Sunday brunch. Reservations recommended. There's a small playground on the sand and direct access to the placid waters of the bay, which are perfect for swimming.

Watching the sun go down from Catherine's Cafe Plage - Picture of Catherines  Cafe, English Harbour - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Cecilia’s High Point Cafe

With gorgeous views of the azure sea, this fabulous beachfront find is presided over by a former Swedish model and her host of animal friends. It strikes the perfect balance between informality and professionalism. Perennial top menu picks include the lobster ravioli and the beef tenderloin, although the regularly changing blackboard specials also beckon mightily. Reservations advisable.

Cecilia's High Point Cafe Reviews | TripExpert

 

 

 

  • Papa Zouk

This high-energy joint is a local institution, famous for its Antiguan-style bouillabaisse and fresh fish – mahimahi to butterfish – served grilled or fried. With zouk on the sound system, crazy murals, Christmas lights and a nautical decor, it's the kind of place that's downright trippy even before you've started sampling the vast rum selection. Reservations essential.

Talking Menu - Review of Papa Zouk, St. John's, Antigua - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Le Bistro

Le Bistro is straight out of a foodie's daydream with a kitchen that has consistently wowed diners with meticulously prepared classic French cuisine. No matter if you fancy escargots or canard, you'll find the ingredients top flight, the presentation exquisite and the service immaculate. Reservations are essential.

Le Bistro - Hodges Bay

 

 

 

  • Dennis Cocktail Bar & Restaurant

Local boy Dennis Thomas creates magic on the plate with his mom's recipes and produce from his own garden. Tuck into such soulful dishes as creamy conch curry or pungent shrimp-and-chicken medley while taking in the sublime beach views from the breezy terrace. Those in the know come Fridays for the reggae barbecue or Sundays for the suckling pig roast. Happy hour runs from 4pm to 6:30pm, perfect for wrapping up a day in the sand with a coconut-rum-based Caribbean Sunset.

sunday lunch @ dennis cocktail bar Antigua - Picture of Dennis Cocktail Bar  & Restaurant, Bolans - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Miracle's

What was once a humble roadside cottage has evolved over the years into a cozy restaurant with linen-bedecked tables and a sophisticated island vibe. Catch of the day varies from mahimahi to tuna and even shark, while shrimp and lobster can be ordered in numerous ways and are served with a choice of two sides. Reservations recommended. Most dishes take a while to prepare, giving you plenty of time to nurse your beer on the wooden deck.

Miracles South Coast Restaurant - Families Love Travel

 

 

 

  • C&C Wine Bar

Eat, drink, socialise' is the motto of this locally adored courtyard cafe where South African wines complement tasty pastas, burgers, paninis and mains such as fragrant shrimp coconut curry. Tables spill from the pint-sized wine shop-bar onto a romantic courtyard, and fill to capacity crowd during 'Lasagne Thursdays' and 'Karaoke Saturdays' – book ahead. The name, by the way, stands for Cutie and Claudine, the charming hosts.

C & C Wine House – Visit Antigua & Barbuda

 

 

 

  • Ana's on the Beach

With its hot-pink, white and black color scheme, wispy cabanas and attached art gallery, breezy Ana's mixes urban sophistication with a relaxed vibe that matches its beachfront setting. The menu is big on Mediterranean staples including Caprese salad, seafood risotto and salmon tagliatelle, but also does a range of tasty curries. Being hemmed in by resorts puts it largely off the radar of locals.

Dinner Menu - Ana's on the beach Ana's on the beach

 

 

 

  • Colibri

The most talked-about recent addition to English Harbour's fine slew of dining options, Colibri is the brainchild of French transplant Didier, who helms a professional team working hard to bring its diners a superlative experience, either in the garden under the trees or in the stylish main dining room. Don't miss the excellent lobster risotto or the line-caught wahoo. Reservations advisable.

Best food in English Harbour - Review of Colibri, English Harbour, Antigua  and Barbuda - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Carmichael's

The chefs at this fine-dining outpost create a blend of Carib-continental cuisine, to be enjoyed with stunning views from the top of Sugar Ridge Resort. Bring a swimsuit for a sunset dip and cocktail in the infinity pool, then settle into a stylish rattan chair on the wooden deck while waiting for dishes such as Caribbean bouillabaisse and fresh lobster.

Carmichael's Restaurant Antigua | Food, Restaurant, Antigua

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN ANTIGUA & BARBUDA

 

  • Market​

Antigua's market – chaotic, colorful and always busy – sprawls north of 4a Calle Poniente. The best days are the official market days (Monday, Thursday and especially Saturday) when villagers from the vicinity roll in and spread their wares north and west of the main market building. The entrance to the market is dominated by tourist goods, so make sure you continue past to get to the heart of the everyday commerce.

Mayan market, Antigua, Guatemala | Antigua guatemala, Guatemala, Guatemalan  textiles

 

 

 

  • Nim Po't

This brilliant, sprawling depot has a huge collection of Maya clothing, as well as hundreds of masks, wood carvings, kites, refrigerator magnets, assorted Maximón figurines and local coffee and chocolate. The huipiles, cortes and other garments are arranged by region, so it makes for a fascinating visit whether you're buying or not.

Amazing selection; good prices; no haggling - Picture of Nim Po't Centro de  Textiles Tradicionales, Antigua - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Mercado del Carmen

Next to the ruins of the Iglesia El Carmen, this excellent market is a good place to browse for textiles, pottery and jade, particularly on weekends, when activity spills out onto 3a Av Norte. The inside is a warren of individual stalls, so take your time to find the treasure you're after.

Mercado de artesanía del Carmen, Antigua - Kris por el mundo - Blog de  viajes y fotografía

 

 

 

  • La Casa del Jade

More than just a jewelry shop, the Casa has a small museum displaying dozens of pre-Hispanic jade pieces and an open workshop where you can admire the work of contemporary craftspeople. It's inside the Casa Antigua El Jaulón shopping arcade.

Casa del Jade, Antigua | DestiMap | Destinations On Map

 

 

 

  • Maya Arte Nativo

This long and narrow shop has a superior selection of bright local handicrafts and home decorations, from flocks of miniature birds to hang from Christmas trees to painted ceramics, mirror frames and quirky sculptures.

inca relics - INCA POTTERY VESSLE | Arte maya, Arte nativo, Inca

 

 

 

  • Librería La Casa del Conde

Bookshop with a good selection of English as well as Spanish titles, including books on Central American history and politics, plus nature guides, literature and Lonely Planet titles.

The Best Independent Bookstores in Antigua, Guatemala

 

 

 

  • Doña María Gordillo Dulces Típicos

If you want to eat your way around some toothsome traditional Guatemalan sweets and pastries, this is the place for you. Try the coconut macaroons, dulces de leche (vanilla and cinnamon cookies) and marzipan – look for the crowd of antigüeños lined up to buy them.

Doña María Gordillo cuenta con dulces típicos a domicilio en la Ciudad de  Guatemala

 

 

 

  • Mercado de Artesanías

Masses of Guatemalan handicrafts fill the stalls of this building at the west end of town just below the main market. While not at the top end of the quality range, it has a variety of colorful masks, blankets, jewelry, purses and so on. Don't be afraid to bargain.

Mercado de Artesanías, Antigua Guatemala - Los mercados más emblemáticos de  Guatemala

 

 

 

  • Jade Maya

Started by a pair of North American archaeologists who were researching ancient jade quarries in the Motagua valley, this shop features a jade workshop and a worthwhile small museum (free admission) with an assortment of pre-Hispanic pieces.

Jade Maya - The Original Jade factory and Museum (Antigua) - 2020 All You  Need to Know Before You Go (with Photos) - Antigua, Guatemala | Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Centro de Arte Popular

Inside the courtyard shopping arcade Casa Antigua El Jaulón, this shop/museum displays Tz'utujil oil paintings, cedar figurines, masks and other crafts. The art is thematically arranged to illustrate the various aspects of indigenous life.

Centro de Arte Popular, La Antigua Guatemala | Sacatepéquez

 

 

 

  • El Reino del Jade

This shop near the Santa Catalina arch specializes in designer jewelry featuring jade and other gems.

El Reino del Jade, Antigua Guatemala - Lugares en la Calle del Arco de  Antigua Guatemala

 

LAUANTAI, 03. LOKAKUUTA 2020
MONTENEGRO - COUNTRY IN THE BALKANS

Montenegro | Foreign Buyers

Bursting at the seams with majestic mountains, breathtaking beaches and larger-than-life locals, minuscule Montenegro proves once and for all that good things do indeed come in small packages.

 

A Warm Welcome

It's nigh on impossible to come across a travel section without someone trumpeting Montenegro as the new 'it' destination. And though the country is rightfully revelling in the spotlight, the people remain as they've always been: candid, convivial and charming. Unlike in many other emerging destinations, hassling and scamming visitors isn't big on Montenegrins' agenda; for the most part, you're more likely to encounter a spontaneous bear hug than a bothersome tout. Whether you're chasing highland hospitality or coastal comradery, expect gregarious greetings, the shirt off your host's back and the addition of at least 5kg; these folks love to feed.

Where Land & Sea Embrace

It's not even 300km from tip to toe, but Montenegro's coastline crams in some of Europe’s most spectacular seaside scenery. Mountains jut sharply from crystal-clear waters in such a way that the word 'looming' is unavoidable. Ancient walled towns cling to the rocks and dip their feet in the water like they're the ones on holiday. In summer, the whole scene is bathed in the scent of wild herbs, conifers and Mediterranean blossoms. All of this – and much, much more – is wrapped up into an area two-thirds of the size of Wales.

Go Wild

When the beaches fill up with Eastern European sunseekers, intrepid travellers can easily sidestep the hordes by getting off the beaten track in the rugged mountains of Durmitor and Prokletije, the primeval forest of Biogradska Gora, or in the many towns and villages where ordinary Montenegrins go about their daily lives. Hike, horse ride, mountain bike or kayak yourself to somewhere obscure and chances are you'll have it all to yourself. This is, after all, a country where wolves and bears still lurk in forgotten corners.

Living on the Edge

Ever since the Roman Empire split in two 1600 years ago, Montenegro has sat on the borderline between east and west. The richness of its cultural history can be seen in the mosaic floors of Roman villas, flamboyantly painted Orthodox monasteries, ornate Catholic churches, elegant minarets of mosques, and the sturdy fortresses built by the numerous powers that have fought over these lands. Then there's the legacy of 50 years as a non-aligned communist state, independent of both the Eastern Bloc and the West. For those with even a passing interest in European history, it's a fascinating place.

 

 

 

 

 

BEST TIME TO VISIT MONTENEGRO

The optimal time to visit Montenegro falls roughly between April and September. The country lies in southern Europe with a coast on the Balkans, so Montenegro weather is frequently warm and sunny. Montenegro's climate follows two distinct patterns: the coastal region has typically Mediterranean weather, with hot summers and mild winters. The Interior of the country, however, has a sub-alpine climate, typified by warm summers and freezing winters. During the winter, temperatures can drop to as low as -15 °C or -20 °C degrees, with heavy rainfall that often manifests as snow.

The Montenegrin coast is a pleasant place to be at any time of the year, but it can get uncomfortably crowded in July and August. During this time, temperatures and tourists reach their peak. Accommodation is also at its most expensive during this period, with rates almost doubling in some places. June and September are widely regarded as the optimum months for a visit when the sunshine is virtually guaranteed, and there's far less pressure on facilities. Some hotels close between late October and early April, but you may well be able to take advantage of excellent rates from those that remain open.

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO MONTENEGRO

Flights to Montenegro are in pretty short supply, but Montenegro Airlines (www.montenegroairlines.com) flies to Podgorica and Tivat (near Kotor) from several European destinations. The state is also easily reached overland from any of its neighbouring countries. From Croatia, there are buses along the coast from Dubrovnik – also home to the closest budget flights – and there are a couple of services from Split too; some of these will require a bus change after a short walk across the border. From Serbia, there are several daily buses between Belgrade and the Montenegrin coast, via Podgorica; daily trains – including a night service – also run from Belgrade to Bar along the same route. From Bosnia-Hercegovina there are direct buses to Podgorica from Trebinje and Sarajevo.

Perhaps the most romantic way to arrive in Montenegro is by ferry from Italy. Between April to September, Montenegro Lines (www.montenegroairlines.net) runs between two and six weekly services to Bar from Bari (from €50).

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND MONTENEGRO

For a country with such a small population, the frequency of intercity buses is quite remarkable. In addition, Montenegro has poured substantial funds into the upgrading of its main travel arteries, and travel times are accordingly short. Hiring a car and driving yourself can save you money on tours. Driving yourself to the Tara Canyon for a rafting trip will save around 30 euros per person compared to booking a tour with transport, and it will allow you to stop at some of the sights along the way. A train line heads to Bar from the Serbian border – a beautiful journey. While services are infrequent, prices are dirt-cheap and almost every inch of track affords breathtaking views, especially the run into Podgorica from the Serbian border – be sure to sit on the western side of the train. 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN MONTENEGRO

 

  • The Chedi Luštica Bay

Set on the waterfront and boasting a private beach area and an outdoor pool, The Chedi Luštica Bay Hotel is located in Trašte Bay, 14 km from Tivat centre. Modernly styled rooms and suites offer mountain or sea views. Free WiFi is available throughout the property. The luxury hotel features rooms with air conditioning, a satellite flat-screen TV, a kettle and a desk. Suites include a seating area and a kitchenette with Illy® espresso machine. Private bathrooms come with a bath or a shower. For your comfort, a bathrobe, slippers and free toiletries are provided. Guests can enjoy a continental breakfast while vegan and gluten-free options can also be provided. Featuring 2 restaurants and a bar, you will find a selection of Mediterranean dishes and fine local wines. The nature-inspired spa and wellness centre, including sauna, steam room and indoor pool as well as fitness centre, is at guests' disposal. The Chedi Hotel also has a conference and business centre on site.

The UNESCO-protected Old Town of Kotor is 13 km away, while Budva is 26 km away. Tivat Airport is 11 km from the property. Airport shuttles are available upon request and at a surcharge. Onsite parking is also provided.

A bird's-eye view of The Chedi Luštica Bay

 

 

 

  • Villa DiEden

Situated in Budva, 600 m from Slovenska Beach, Villa DiEden features a garden and terrace The property offers a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi is available. All units in the guest house are fitted with a flat-screen TV with cable channels. The rooms are equipped with a kettle and a private bathroom with free toiletries, while some rooms have a kitchen equipped with a stovetop. The rooms will provide guests with a fridge. Mogren Beach is 2.3 km away. Aqua Park Budva is 3.3 km from the accommodation. The nearest airport is Tivat Airport, 20 km from the property.

A seating area at Villa DiEden

 

 

 

  • Blue Kotor Bay Premium Spa Resort

Blue Kotor Bay Premium Resort is an adults-only hotel and consists of rooms and suites equipped with modern amenities and elegantly decorated in bright tones. It features a spa and wellness centre, coffee and lounge bar and a private beach area. Stylish rooms and suite come with a balcony and panoramic view on Kotor Bay. Some of the modern amenities include a kettle and a flat-screen TV. En-suite bathrooms come with a walk-in shower and luxury toiletries. Guests can enjoy at the private beach with sunbeds and sun umbrellas, as well as use a beach concierge service upon previous request. At guests disposal is an in-house restaurant Blue, beach restaurant Lighthouse and Piano lounge & coffee bar with a selection of finest dishes and refreshing drinks. There is also a private marina with three private docks. The nearest airport is Tivat Airport, 15 km away and the hotel offers airport shuttle service.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Splendid Conference & Spa Resort

The luxurious 5-star hotel Splendid Conference & Spa Resort is set directly on a long sandy beach in the heart of Bečići, just 2 km from Budva’s Old Town. Supreme spa area with heated indoor pools, saunas, hot tubs and steam baths with Swarovski crystals is at guests' disposal. The elegantly decorated rooms and suites are fitted with air conditioning, an LCD satellite TV and a private balcony overlooking the Adriatic Sea and Bečići Bay. The comfortable bathroom offers a bathrobe, toiletries and hairdryer. The on-site à la carte restaurant serves supreme Montenegrin and international cuisine with freshly prepared ingredients. Wide selection of local and world famous wines is available. The private sandy beach with parasols and loungers is at guests' disposal. Guests can relax by the pool where drinks and snacks are served throughout the day. Spacious and modern Casino Royale is available on site. Tivat Airport is 20 km from Splendid Conference & Spa Resort, while Podgorica Airport can be reached within 60 km. Dubrovnik Airport is 68 km away and a pick-up service can be organised upon request and against a surcharge.

A view of the pool at Splendid Conference & Spa Resort or nearby

 

 

 

  • Hilton Podgorica Crna Gora

Newly renovated and upgraded in 2016, Hilton Podgorica Crna Gora is a quick walk to government offices, embassies, the city centre and its parks. Set in the heart of Podgorica, it features a rooftop bar while guests can enjoy a meal in one of the 4 on-site restaurants. The well-equipped business centre offers free WiFi internet access. Stylish and sunlit rooms offer a quiet relaxation space after a busy day. Terrace Fontana offers coffee and homemade pastries that you can enjoy. This fully renovated hotel also features a spa centre. Podgorica is a vibrant city with diverse cafés, jazz clubs, discothèques and taverns.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Marinero Apartments

Located just 200 m from the centre of Budva, Marinero Apartments feature a lush garden surrounded by palm trees, lemon trees and kiwi and orange trees. Free Wi-Fi and free parking are provided. All units are air-conditioned and uniquely decorated. The colourfully furnished apartments feature a seating area, cable TV and a fully equipped kitchenette. Private bathroom provides a shower, while the terrace provides a seating area. A sandy beach is just 200 m from the property, while Budva Old Town can be reached in a 10-minute walk. A restaurant and a grocery shop can be found 100 m away. The popular Mogren Beach is 500 m from Apartments Marinero. Local buses stop just 500 m away, while Tivat Airport can be reached in 35 km. The town of Kotor is 20 km away.

Gallery image of this property

 

 

 

  • Hotel Pine 

Set only 160 m from the beach, Hotel Pine is located in the centre of Tivat. The hotel was completely renovated in 2014 and boasts stunning views of the Tivat Bay. It features free WiFi in all areas. All rooms are air-conditioned and comprise a flat-screen cable TV, a minibar and a bathroom. The hotel's wellness centre features a sauna and a fitness room. The hotel offers an on-site bar and a restaurant. Breakfast can be enjoyed either in the restaurant or on the restaurant's terrace, lined with palm trees. A range of local specialities can be ordered from the menu, including seafood and meat dishes. The locally popular hotel's patisserie offers various sweets. The Tivat Airport is only 3 km away.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Boscovich Boutique Hotel

Located in Podgorica, 500 m from Turkish Bathhouse, Boscovich Boutique Hotel provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a fitness centre and a bar. The property is situated less than 1 km from Millennium Bridge, a 15-minute walk from Clock Tower in Podgorica and 2.6 km from Church of the Holy Heart of Jesus. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, room service and free WiFi throughout the property. At the hotel, all rooms have a wardrobe. At Boscovich Boutique Hotel every room is equipped with a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. A buffet breakfast is available daily at the accommodation. Popular points of interest near Boscovich Boutique Hotel include Natural History Museum, St. George Church and Parliament of Montenegro. The nearest airport is Podgorica Airport, 12 km from the hotel.

BOSCOVICH BOUTIQUE HOTEL $83 ($̶1̶0̶9̶) - Updated 2020 Prices & Reviews -  Podgorica, Montenegro - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Conte Hotel & Restaurant

Set by the sea and right on the main square in Perast, the Conte Hotel & Restaurant features elegantly decorated suites and apartments with free Wi-Fi provided in the lobby. The restaurant takes pride in its fish specialities. All accommodation units are air conditioned and have satellite TV. The reception desk can arrange laundry service and has a tour desk where you can get various tourist information. The hotel is situated in the former Home of Culture and is a protected heritage building. The church of Saint Nicholas is just a few steps away. The local bus station is next to the property, while the supermarket is only 50 m from the Conte Hotel. You can reach a sandy and stone-paved beach with a bar and sports facilities in a 4-minute walk. Perast Town Museum is just 100 m away. Several restaurants and bars are easily accessible in the town's historic core.

The building in which the hotel is located

 

 

 

  • Fontana Seafront Residences

Situated in Budva, 800 m from Mogren Beach, Fontana Seafront Residences provides accommodation with a restaurant. Featuring a bar, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi. The property features a 24-hour front desk. The rooms are equipped with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a kettle, a bath or shower, a hairdryer and a desk. The rooms have a private bathroom with free toiletries. Guest rooms at the hotel come with a seating area. A buffet breakfast is served daily at the property. Fontana Seafront Residences offers a terrace. Aqua Park Budva is 1.7 km from the accommodation, while Sveti Stefan is 5 km from the property. Tivat Airport is 16 km away.

Central Budva apartment, Montenegro - reviews, prices | Planet of Hotels

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN MONTENEGRO

Montenegro’s stunning natural beauty and diverse history make it a fascinating place to explore. Jaw-dropping scenery around every corner, remnants of vanquished kingdoms and trendy underground destinations mean this tiny country packs a mighty punch for its size. Here are the the list of Turisti-Info to must-see attractions and things to do in Montenegro.

 

 

  • Kotor Old Town & Bay of Kotor

Dominated by the 12-century Cathedral of Saint Tryphon, Kotor's Old Town is one of the Adriatic coast's best preserved fortified medieval towns. Distinctly Venetian in its style (Venice was one of many city states and empires that ruled over this area throughout the centuries), Kotor sits at the edge of the brilliant blue Bay of Kotor surrounded by dramatic, soaring mountains. The Cathedral of Saint Tryphon is known for its carved stone altar, an excellent example of the kind of stonemasonry the city was famous for during the Middle Ages. Spend some time wandering the maze of streets and alleyways throughout Kotor's Old Town, pausing for a meal at a traditional restaurant or a cold beverage at a sidewalk café in one of the piazzas. If you want more exercise, challenge yourself with a trek up to the upper town walls. From here, you'll have stunning views across the city and bay.

Kotor & The Bay of Kotor, Montenegro in HD - YouTube

 

 

 

  • Budva Riviera

Stretching along the central Montenegrin coastline with Budva as its anchor city, the Budva Riveria is a hot summer beach destination for locals and tourists alike. The beaches here are a mix of sand and pebbles, backed by the clear, turquoise and aquamarine-blue hues of the Adriatic Sea on one side and dramatic mountains on the other. There are a number of top quality beaches along the Riviera, including Mogren Beach, which is the closest to Old Town Budva at just a five-minute walk along a seaside pathway from town. The beaches along the Budva Riviera are also lined with restaurants with outdoor seating. Old Town Budva has a history that dates back 2,500 years. This medieval walled city has a lively atmosphere and is filled with restaurants and shops, as well as a town museum.

 

 

 

  • Lipa Cave

One of the largest caves in Montenegro, Lipa Cave, just a few kilometers from the village of Cetinje, is in the mountains north and just east of Budva. The cave was first discovered accidentally by a dog who fell through a hole into it, but managed to escape safely through another opening. Today, the karst cavern is also one of Montenegro's most popular tourist attractions for adventurous kids and adults alike. A visit begins with a ride on a miniature train through the wild countryside, full of pomegranate and wild fig trees, to the cave's entrance. From here, you'll join a guided tour through some of the 3.5 kilometers of passages and great halls carved by thousands of years of dripping water and its underground river.

 

 

 

  • Blue Grotto

Montenegro's still relatively undiscovered Lustica Peninsula is home to charming villages, beautiful beaches, and the Blue Grotto. The grotto is named for its florescent blue water, which gets its dramatic hues from the light reflecting off the sandy bottom in the round-shaped cave with a vaulted ceiling. You can only access the Blue Grotto by boat. Tours depart regularly from the Herceg Novia marina between April and October and either go only to the Blue Grotto or combine nearby attractions. The cave is also a great spot for snorkeling or diving.

Blue Grotto Tour - Picture of Delfin Boats, Herceg-Novi - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Lake Scadar

Lake Scadar, on the border with Albania, is the largest natural lake in Southern Europe. It is a great back-to-nature destination that hosts multiple species of migratory birds and other wildlife. The Montenegrin side of the lake has been designated as a national park. Explore the lake on a boat excursion and also spend some time checking out the villages dotting it. Many date back to the 13th century and have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage sites. On the lake's southwestern shore, you'll find Murici Beach, which is a pristine and quiet stretch of shoreline backed by the beautiful Rumija Mountain Range. The beach can be accessed via a steep road to a small village at the edge of the lake. This is a great spot to just escape and breathe in the fresh air and countryside ambience.

 

 

 

  • Ulcinj

Right by the Albanian boarder at Montenegro's southern tip, Ulcinj is an ancient seaport that was once infamous as the Adriatic Sea's pirate capital. Today, Ulcinj is a unique Montenegrin town with a largely Muslim population and some beautiful mosques and excellent Middle Eastern restaurants and coffeeshops along its peaceful seaside promenade. The area is also known for its beaches, including Velika Plaza (which translates to "Big Beach") and at 12 kilometers is Montenegro's longest beach. The water here is very shallow and great for families with small children. It is also a top spot for kite-surfers, who take advantage of the glassy smooth and shallow water and prevailing winds to catch a ride. If you'd like learn more about the sport, there are a number of kite surfing schools at the southern end of Velika Plaza.

 

 

 

  • Cetinje

The 15th-century town of Cetinje once served as Montenegro's capital during the late 19th and 20th centuries (prior to WWI when it was still an independent country). At the time, the inland valley locale at the edge of what was then the Ottoman Empire made it a coveted spot to conduct diplomacy. Today, the embassies have been turned into museums, government buildings, and educational academies, and the town is a pleasure to wander aimlessly about for an afternoon. The Cetinje Monastery here has a collection of Early-Christian-era relics you can see for a donation, and the Vlah Church dating back to the 15th-century is another notable sight.

 

 

 

  • Mount Lovcen

Montenegro's name was inspired by the towering granite peaks of Mount Lovcen, and the mountain is a source of national pride. Protected as a part of Mount Lovcen National Park, the views from the circular platform at the top are truly stunning and have you looking down upon the Bay of Kotor and the medieval city of Kotor on its shores. Also nearby is Njegos Mausoleum, where you can pay your respects to the author of Montenegro's national epic poem, "The Mountain Wreath." Its poet Petar II Petrovic-Njegos is buried here. The village of Cetijne is the main base for this park and where you'll find a number of hotel and restaurant options.

Montenegro: Full-Day Tour to Lovcen National Park & More - Herceg Novi,  Montenegro | GetYourGuide

 

 

 

  • Perast

On the same beautiful bay as Kotor but located just to the northwest, Perast is a picturesque small town notable for its multiple churches and stone-crafted villas. In town, the Church of St. Nikola has great views of the town and Bay of Kotor from its belfry tower. Two of Perast's most charming churches, Our Lady of the Rocks and St. George, however, are on tiny islets in the bay. The town does not have a beach, but the stone jetties along its bayfront are popular summer spots for sunbathers.

PERAST, MONTENEGRO - THINGS TO DO & TRAVEL TIPS | Biz Evde Yokuz

 

 

 

  • Sveti Stefan

On the Budva Riviera, Sveti Stefan is connected to the mainland by a narrow isthmus and has been inhabited since the 15th-century. Back then it was a simple fishing village. The town came to be known in the 1950s when it was turned into a luxury resort area, and guests like Marilyn Monroe and Sophia Loren would holiday here. Following a downturn at the end of the 20th-century as the Yugoslav federation collapsed, today it is again a vacation paradise, with two beautiful pebble beaches on either side of the isthmus. Although the beaches are public, the original village is only open to visitors staying at the Aman Resort here.

 

 

 

  • Durmitor National Park

Near the mountain town of Žabljak, Durmitor National Park is another popular natural attraction. The park sits in the Dinaric Alps and is home to some 18 glacial lakes, the Tara River, and the world's second deepest canyon (see Tara Canyon below). It is also home to thick areas of forest and wildlife, from brown bears to wild boars, and 163 different species of birds. There are opportunities to go skiing or snowboarding here in winter, and in summer, you can hike, camp, and whitewater raft among other activities.

 

 

 

  • Tara Canyon

Tara Canyon is another of Montenegro's amazing natural wonders. After the Grand Canyon, it is the world's deepest canyon, and just like the Grand Canyon, it can be experienced with an epic whitewater rafting trip. Note that the water is a bit on the chilly side, however, at around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don't want to get wet, you can also see the canyon from the Ðurdevica Tara Bridge. The concrete arch bridge was rebuilt after WWII, when it was blown up in an effective attempt to stop the Italian invasion. Today, the bridge is 172 meters above the canyon floor and besides taking in views from it, adrenalin junkies can ride across the canyon on a zipline.

 

 

 

  • Ostrog Monastery

Built during the 17th century as a refuge against Ottoman Empire invaders, Ostrog Monastery is now a major Christian pilgrimage destination. Set atop a large granite outcropping, the entire monastery was carved from a cave on a nearly vertical cliff. It is quite an impressive site, with two inner cave churches that can be visited. They are bedecked with frescos painted right onto the rock walls. The monastery also houses the remains of its founder, Sveti Vasilje, who became a saint after his death in 1671.

 

 

 

  • Biogradska Gora National Park

Montenegro has designated quite a bit of land to national parks, including the beautiful Biogradska Gora National Park in the center of the country. Set between the Lim and Tara rivers, it is filled with fast-running streams; sparkling, clear lakes; flower-filled meadows; and one of Europe's last primeval forests, where the trees are 500 years old. The top natural attraction in this park is Lake Biograd, which is a large glacial lake in the middle of the park. The nearby town of Kolasin makes a good base with lodging and restaurants.

 

 

 

  • San Giovanni Fortress

One thousand three hundred fifty-five steps. That’s all that separates you from the best view in Kotor. San Giovanni Fortress dates from the 9th century, and no visit to Kotor is complete without a hike to the top. The views from the top take in the Bay of Kotor, Mt Vrmac and Kotor old town. Simply breathtaking!

Up to San Giovanni Castle in Kotor

 

 

 

  • Black Lake

The peaks of Dumitor National Park make a stunning backdrop for the Black Lake. An easy 4-kilometer track around the lake meanders past historic caves and grazing cattle. There are boats for hire and it’s an idyllic spot to spread a picnic blanket and enjoy the scenery.

black lake montenegro - Google Search | Montenegro, Europe honeymoon, Lake

 

 

 

  • Velika Plaza

Ulcinj’s Velika Plaza, on the south coast of Montenegro, is a 12 kilometer stretch of sandy beach that’s popular with intrepid travellers. With kite surfing, beach parties and a music festival, this is one of the trendiest summer hot spots in Montenegro.

MCM beach - Picture of Long Beach (Velika plaza), Ulcinj - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Bar Old Town

Bar’s old town is the perfect place to get a feel for the cultural mix in Montenegro. The colourful street and restaurants have a distinctive eastern flair, showing the Turkish influence here. The stone old town is a mix of ruins, museum and art gallery.

Top 9 Things To Do in Bar, Montenegro

 

 

 

  • Our Lady of the Rocks

Our Lady of the Rocks is a 15th-century island church that’s been protecting the seafarers of the Bay of Kotor for over 500 years. A short boat ride from Perast or Kotor takes you to the island where for €1 you can take a guided tour through the church and attached museum. Not only is the island idyllic, but you’ll get beautiful views of Perast.

Our Lady of the Rocks Island | Porto Montenegro | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Nevidio Canyon

Nevidio Canyon is a must-do for adrenaline junkies. Tours go through the canyon from May to October. Once you’re in the canyon, the only way out is to hike, swim, slide and jump your way to the exit. This one is not for the faint of heart!

Montenegro canyoning - Nevidio - YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO EAT IN MONTENEGRO

A geographically diverse country, encompassing beautiful seaside as well as breathtaking mountain views, Montenegro also boasts a diverse cuisine. Bearing the influences of other Mediterranean traditions, Italian and Turkish, Montenegrin cooking history is also deeply rooted in its Balkan origins. Spanning fish and meat dishes, locally produced cheese, ham, beer, and wine, Turisti-Info gather the lists of the best places to experience Montenegrin cuisine.

 

 

  • Ćatovića Mlini

A traditional Montenegrin konoba (tavern, or restaurant), Ćatovića Mlini, meaning the Catovic’s Mills, lies washed by the waters of a stream in the small village of Morinj. Functioning for centuries as a watermill, the place now provides a relaxing and romantic setting for one of the better-regarded restaurants in Montenegro. Located in Boka Bay, the menu at Ćatovića Mlni revolves around freshly caught local fish. Fish dishes, fish-based salads, and other seafood are the highlights of the menu, which also features homemade cheese and prosciutto, as well as house-produced wines.

Catovica Mlini in Montenegro | My Guide Montenegro

 

 

 

  • Koliba at Kolibe Bogetići

Located in the midst of the Montenegrin mountainside, the tourist complex Kolibe Bogetići is five kilometres away from the orthodox monastery of Ostrog, embedded in the rock at Ostroška Greda. Comprising a number of bungalows and a restaurant, the complex, surrounded by mountainous vegetation, enjoys a particularly evocative atmosphere. Built in a classic Montenegrin style, Koliba proudly offers typical local dishes prepared according to the traditional recipes. Accompanied by a selection of house-crafted beers and wines, cicvara (a traditional gruel), dried sheep meat, polenta, and homemade cheese are among the local dishes guests can choose.

RESTAURANT KOLIBA BOGETICI - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Konoba Koliba

Located in the Seljanovo area of the city of Tivat, Konoba Koliba proudly serves the typical food of ‘good old Montenegro’. Being centred on the traditional rustic cooking of the Balkan region, the restaurant’s strength lies in its meat dishes, which feature a rich range of wood-grilled cuts. Situated just five minutes away from the sea, Konoba Koliba satisfies fish lovers by serving the freshest catches of the day. It also serves vegetarian options, all prepared with seasonal ingredients, such as the summer 2014 specialty of stuffed bell peppers. Currently on offer on the constantly changing menu is the grilled turkey steak.

KONOBA VILA MARIJA, Prcanj - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Konoba Stari Grad

One of the oldest konoba in Budva, Konoba Stari Grad sits along the beach in the old town. Featuring an outside terrace covered in pebble stones, the restaurant is decorated in a refined yet unpretentious style. Its interior has a rustic tone given by the stonewalls and dark wooden ceiling. Due to its location, it is easy to imagine that Konoba Stari Grad’s focus might be on fish, and indeed it is. Inspired by Mediterranean recipes, the menu is based on fish dishes prepared with the fresh daily catch, among which the octopus ragout is a favourite. A variety of local cheese and smoked ham from the Njegushi region is also a highlight.

KONOBA STARI GRAD, Budva - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone Number -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Perla Pop Lounge & Restaurant

Situated in the popular destination of Budva, Perla Pop Lounge & Restaurant stands out for its unique architecture and distinctive décor. Boasting a luxurious design of indoor terraces, extravagant lighting, velvet and wide windows, Perla is bound to impress with its hip, vibrant feel. Recalling the shape of the building with its rounded design, the menu offers abundant alternatives for all taste buds. Featuring a wide range of appetizers, soups, pastas, and risottos, the choice extends to meat and fish mains that include the sea bass ‘oliva Montenegro’, with olive paté and spinach purée, and chicken breast in truffle cream served with gnocchi.

Photos at Perla (Now Closed) - Bistro in Budva

 

 

 

  • Restaurant Galion

Part of Hotel Vardar, Restaurant Galion is located just across a little bay from the main site of the hotel. Offering charming views, the site provides the perfect atmosphere for this elegant eatery. Sea waves reflect the light in myriad blue tones on one side, while on the other the ancient walls of the town of Kotor offer a picturesque backdrop to the dining experience. With a focus on fish dishes, the food at Restaurant Galion is inspired by the flavours of international cuisine, infused with a hint of the local culinary identity.

Galion, Kotor - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Imanje Knjaz

Set in a luxurious ambience that blends elements of modern design with elegant and classic lines, Imanje Knjaz welcomes its guests in a charming and refined atmosphere. The soft light from the elaborate chandeliers illuminates the wood of the flooring and furnishings. Many picture frames encase old shots of Montenegrin landscapes and people. With a menu that draws inspiration from the journey of Prince Nikola I of Montenegro, the restaurant marries traditional local dishes with different European cuisines, mixing serdar steak and popeci Podgorica-style with pastas, meats, and fish dishes.

Hotel Knjaz, Podgorica, Montenegro - Booking.com

 

 

 

  • Plavnica

Located at the heart of Eco Resort Plavnica, Plavnica restaurant lies next to beautiful Skadar Lake. Not far from Podgorica, the resort complex is located on a branch of water that plunges into the lake, and is enclosed within the green landscapes of the nearby national park. Enjoying its charming location along the shore, the restaurant is an ample building decorated in a colonial style that recalls the atmosphere of elegant dining halls on old cruise ships. Be it in the wide indoor hall or outside on the fresh porches, guests will enjoy a mix of specialties from the local cooking tradition, as well as international and ethnic dishes.

Eco Camp Plavnica - Bungalows for Rent in Podgorica Municipality, Podgorica  Municipality, Montenegro

 

 

 

  • Restaurant at Hemera Hotel

Nestled in the elegant setting of the Boutique Hotel Hemera, this restaurant is infused with refined charm and style. Engraved stonewalls enclose the indoor dining hall, with embedded bookshelves and contemporary style lighting spreading diffused light on the eclectic furnishings and large carpets. A menu focused on Mediterranean dishes offers a choice of international flavours, with fish dishes and salads among the favourite mains. There is an ample selection of desserts and pastries. Also featuring a bar, guests are invited to lounge about while sipping on a glass of wine or a cocktail.

Hemera Restoran, Podgorica - Restaurant Reviews, Phone Number & Photos -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Restaurants at Hotel Hippocampus

Settled in the cosy surroundings of the narrow alleys of Kotor old town, the medieval building housing Boutique Hotel Hippocampus maintains the fascinating atmosphere of the ancient burg. Elegantly furnished with unique pieces, and restored to maintain the original features of the building, both the hotel and its two restaurants are infused with charm. The restaurants enjoy particularly enchanting locations: on the main level the indoor hall is complemented by a courtyard, while on the top floor guests can delight in marvellous views over Kotor. The menu blends Mediterranean cuisine with international influences, and features black tagliatelle with shrimps as one of the highlights.

Boutique Hotel Hippocampus, Kotor Hotel Price, Address & Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO SHOP IN MONTENEGRO

 

  • Cats of Kotor

Though you can't bundle them into your backpack (tempting as it may be), you can bring home the cats of Kotor in the form of beautiful, locally made handicrafts with a feline flavour. Part gallery, part boutique, this quirky shop sells everything from cat-themed jewellery and clothes to original artworks.

lovely souvenir shop - Review of Cats of Kotor, Kotor, Montenegro -  Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Pizana Gallery

Browse to your heart's content at this gallery, representing many of Montenegro's leading contemporary artists.

Galerija Pizana - Art Gallery

 

 

 

  • Kotor Bazaar

Recently opened in the long-abandoned cloister of a Dominican monastery, this little market has stalls selling T-shirts, souvenirs and religious icons. In the back corner there's a little medieval 'museum', where for €3 you can pose with replica weapons and armour, or try your hand with a bow and arrow.

Kotor City Guide - Montenegro

 

 

 

  • City Market

Self-caterers can stock up at this food market under the town walls. The vendors are happy to give out free samples of everything, from local pršut and cheese to olives and strawberries. On summer evenings stalls spring up selling clothes, jewellery and souvenirs.

Market in the City of Bar, Montenegro | Early September 2009… | L. Z. |  Flickr

 

 

 

  • Kamelija

This shopping centre, on the highway near the Stari Grad, has a big supermarket, loads of boutiques, a pharmacy, banks and a supervised kids' playground (from €3 per hour). It's a good place to buy a local SIM card.

Conveniently located close to harbour - Review of Shopping Center Kamelija,  Kotor, Montenegro - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Secondhand Shop

If you feel like ditching your duds after a long, sweaty day of kicking along the cobblestones (or just love a bargain), this Old Town op-shop is overflowing with top-quality threads.

Second-hand shop in Shimokitazawa, Tokyo's | Stock Photo

 

 

 

  • Efesya Souvenir

The best of a crop of Turkish shops to spring up in recent years, Efesya sells colourful glass lamps, ceramics, scarves, bags and even chess sets.

Efesya Souvenir (Kotor) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with  Photos) - Tripadvisor

 

 

 

  • Antiques Stanković

A treasure trove of socialist medals, Roman coins, antique jewellery, traditional garb and other interesting stuff to blow the budget on.

Home | Antiques Stankovic

 

 

 

  • Town Market

If you want to take on the locals in a tussle for the best fresh fruit and vegetables, get to this little produce market by around 8am.

Shopping In Montenegro: 10 Places To Go On A Shopping Spree

 

PERJANTAI, 02. LOKAKUUTA 2020
BEST SCENIC ROAD TRIPS IN EUROPE

A Guide to the Best Road Trips in Europe – Digitourist

Packed with ancient history, sophisticated cities, cultural treasures, fine food and even finer art, Europe has an embarrassment of riches and is a dream for all kinds of travelers. And with landscapes boasting rugged coastlines, rolling country fields and mighty mountains (to name but a few), this is a region that suits road-tripping down to a T. These nine diverse and dynamic countries – all featured in Turisti - Info's Europe's Best Road Trips guide – represent some of the top spots to hit the road in Europe. Discover what makes them so special and kick your trip planning into gear with our recommended road trips.

 

 

  • Italy

Few countries can rival Italy's wealth of riches. Its historic cities boast iconic monuments and masterpieces at every turn, its food is imitated the world over and its landscape is a majestic patchwork of snowcapped peaks, plunging coastlines, lakes and remote valleys. And with many thrilling roads to explore, it offers plenty of epic driving. 

The 6 Best Road Trips in Italy - Eating Europe

Recommended trip: World Heritage wonders – 14 days, 870 km/540 miles

Start – Rome; finish – Venice

From Rome to Venice, this tour of Unesco World Heritage Sites takes in some of Italy’s greatest hits, including the Colosseum and the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and some lesser-known treasures.

 

 

 

  • France

Iconic monuments, fabulous food, world-class wines – there are so many reasons to plan your very own French voyage. Whether you’re planning on cruising the corniches of the French Riviera, getting lost among the snowcapped mountains or tasting your way around Champagne'shallowed vineyards, this is a nation that’s full of unforgettable routes that will plunge you straight into France’s heart and soul. There’s a trip for everyone here: family travelers, history buffs, culinary connoisseurs and outdoor adventurers. Buckle up and bon voyage – you’re in for quite a ride.

Tall green trees flank a single-lane road in the South of France A gray car rides down a single lane road surrounded by green landscape and towards a very tall mountain

Two Day Road Trip From Paris to Champagne, Audi S5 Cabriolet HireChampagne Private Day tour - Champagne's Soul And Spirit

Recommended trip: Champagne taster – 3 days, 85 km/53 miles

Start – Reims; finish – Le Mesnil-sur-Oger

From musty cellars to vine-striped hillsides, this Champagne adventure whisks you through the heart of the region to explore the world’s favorite celebratory tipple. It’s time to quaff!

 

 

 

 

  • Great Britain

Great Britain overflows with unforgettable experiences and spectacular sights. There’s the grandeur of Scotland’s mountains, England’s quaint villages and country lanes, and the haunting beauty of the Welsh coast. You’ll also find wild northern moors, the exquisite university colleges of Oxford and Cambridge, and a string of vibrant cities boasting everything from Georgian architecture to 21st-century art.

26 Best Places In Britain To Visit - Hand Luggage Only - Travel, Food &  Photography BlogBritain's 10 greatest drives

Most scenic driving routes in the UK: Best roads in Britain | Travel News |  Travel | Express.co.uk

Recommended trip: The best of Britain – 21 days, 1815 km/1128 miles

Start and finish – London (via Edinburgh and Cardiff)

Swing through three countries and several millennia of history as you take in a greatest hits parade of Britain’s chart-topping sights.

 

 

 

 

  • Ireland

Your main reason for visiting? To experience the Ireland of the postcard  – captivating peninsulas, dramatic wildness and undulating hills. Scenery, history, culture, bustling cosmopolitanism and the stillness of village life – you’ll visit blockbuster attractions and replicate famous photo ops. But there are plenty of surprises too – and they’re all within easy reach of each other.

30 Scenic Drives In Ireland To Do At Least Once In Your Life Time | The Irish  Road Trip

Northern Ireland coastal touring route | IrishCentral.com

Recommended trip: the long way around – 14 days, 1300 km/807 miles

Start – Dublin; finish – Ardmore

Why go in a straight line when you can perambulate at leisure? This trip explores Ireland’s jagged, scenic and spectacular edges; a captivating loop that takes in the whole island.

 

 

 

 

  • Spain

Spectacular beaches, mountaintop castles, medieval villages, stunning architecture and some of the most celebrated restaurants on the planet –Spain has an allure that few destinations can match. There’s much to see and do amid the enchanting landscapes that inspired Picasso and Velàzquez. You can spend your days feasting on seafood in coastal Galican towns, feel the heartbeat of Spain at soul-stirring flamenco shows or hike across the flower-strewn meadows of the mountains. The journeys in this region offer something for everyone: beach lovers, outdoor adventurers, family travelers, music fiends, foodies and those simply wanting to delve into Spain’s rich art and history.

Road Trip in Spain: Northern Coast Itinerary | DFTM TravelThe Ultimate Road Trip in Spain: Your Stop-by-Stop Guide – Devour Madrid

Camino de Santiago - Portuguese Way - Guimarães - OUTDOYO

Recommended trip: Northern Spain pilgrimage – 5-7 days, 678 km/423 miles

Start – Roncesvalles; finish – Santiago de Compostela

Travel in the footprints of thousands of pilgrims past and present as you journey along the highroads and backroads of the legendary Camino de Santiago pilgrimage trail.

 

 

 

 

  • Portugal

Portugal’s mix of the medieval and the maritime makes it a superb place to visit. A turbulent history involving the Moors, Spain and Napoleon has left the interior scattered with walled medieval towns topped by castles, while the pounding Atlantic has sculpted a coast of glorious sandy beaches. The nation’s days of exploration and seafaring have created an introspective yet open culture with wide-ranging artistic influences.

The eating and drinking scene here is a highlight, with several wine regions, and restaurants that are redolent with aromas of grilling pork or the freshest of fish. Comparatively short distances mean that you get full value for road trips here: less time behind the wheel means you can take more time to absorb the atmosphere.

The Coolest and Most Scenic Road Trips to Take in PortugalThe Coolest and Most Scenic Road Trips to Take in Portugal

Miranda do Douro, Portugal

Recommended trip: Douro Valley vineyard trails – 5-7 days, 358 km/222 miles

Start – Porto; finish – Miranda do Douro

The Douro is a little drop of heaven. Uncork this region on Porto's doorstep and you’ll soon fall head over heels in love with its terraced vineyards, wine estates and soul-stirring vistas.

 

 

 

 

  • Germany

Grandiose cities, storybook villages, vine-stitched valleys and bucolic landscapes that beg you to toot your horn, leap out of the car and jump for joy – road-tripping in Germany is a mesmerizing kaleidoscope of brilliant landscapes and experiences.

German Alpine Road route detail | TomTomStreet view of houses in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany

10 Most Beautiful Places to Visit in Germany

Recommended trip: the Romantic Road – 10 days, 350 km/218 miles

Start – Würzburg; finish – Neuschwanstein & Hohenschwangau Castles

On this trip, you’ll experience the Germany of the bedtime storybook – medieval walled towns, gabled townhouses, cobbled squares and crooked streets, all preserved as if time has come to a standstill. 

 

 

 

 

  • Switzerland

A place of heart-stopping natural beauty and head-spinning efficiency, Switzerland lies in the center of Europe yet exhibits a unique blend of cultures. Dazzling outdoor scenery, such as the ever-admired Alps, pristine lakes, lush meadows and chocolate-box chalets, combines with local traditions, cosmopolitan cities and smooth infrastructure. In short, Switzerland makes it easy for you to dive deep into its heart: distances are manageable and variety is within easy reach. You can be perusing a farmers' market for picnic provisions in the morning, then feasting on them on a mountaintop come lunchtime. At nightfall, try gazing at stars in the night sky from cozy digs or reveling in the cultural offerings of one of Switzerland’s urbane cities.

The 5 Best Alpine Drives in Switzerland | Alpine Road ToursTop 10 ways to cross the Alps by car - LazyTrips

Switzerland

Recommended trip: the Swiss Alps – 7 days, 612 km/382 miles

Start – Arosa; finish – Zermatt 

From Arosa to Zermatt, this zigzagging trip is the A to Z of Switzerland’s astounding Alpine scenery, with majestic peaks, formidable panoramas, cable-car rides and local charm.

 

 

 

 

  • Austria

Austria is a road-tripper's fantasy land. Not only are there spectacular backdrops of spellbinding landscapes and storybook architecture, but opportunities abound to get out and experience them. Along these routes, you can scale soaring peaks, ski year-round, raft white-water rapids and pelt down toboggan runs. When you’ve had enough thrills and spills, Austria's multitude of cultural pursuits span medieval castles to monumental palaces, art-filled museums and magnificent churches. You can taste cheese at Alpine dairies, schnapps at distilleries, and beer and wine in monasteries where they’re still made by monks. Or just hop aboard a horse-drawn carriage to clip-clop through cobbled, lamp-lit city streets.

Five Scenic Drives in Austria Where the Hills Are Alive for Road Trips.austrianimages.com | Austria, Salzburg State, View from Edelweissspitze to  Grossglockner, Fuscherkarkopf

Five Scenic Drives in Austria Where the Hills Are Alive for Road Trips.

Recommended trip: Grossglockner Road – 5-7 days, 644 km/401 miles

Start – Salzburg; finish – Bregenz

Austria’s most exhilarating trip takes you on a wild roller-coaster drive over three legendary Alpine passes and packs in outdoor activities from year-round skiing to windsurfing and white-water rafting.

 

 

 

 

  • Trollstigen, Norway

Dramatic, cascading waterfalls, 11 tight hairpin bends, breathtaking mountain views, vertiginously steep inclines and awe-inspiring glimpses of the twisting route unfolding before your very eyes are what draw thrill-seeking travellers to the Trollstigen route in Norway’s Rauma region. Troll’s Ladder or Troll’s Path in English, the mountain road is studded with strikingly designed viewing platforms offering limitless photographic opportunities – or just the chance to gaze out over the 1,050ft-high Stigfossen waterfall, which motorists also cross on an arched, stone bridge. Some of the best views of all are from the 2,300ft plateau where there’s a car park and visitor centre, although the joy of driving the narrow road itself, often lined with rows of jagged stones, is what attracts many.

TROLLSTIGEN

Starts: At the town of Andalsnes in Rauma – take Country Road 63

Ends: At the village of Valldal in the Norddal Municipality

Despite the popularity of the route – and houses dotting mountain ledges and crags in the most improbable places – it’s the powerful sense of isolation in a vast landscape that makes this route feel special. That, and the adrenalin rush from negotiating the generally well-surfaced twists and turns.

 

 

 

 

  • Finland

Helsinki is not only an interesting city in itself but also a perfect base for road-tripping in Finland. From seaside towns to an epic hunt for Northern Lights in Lapland, Drive to Discover the Lakeland region of Finland. Visiting Lakeland is like taking a trip into the heart of Finnish identity. Roadtrip is one of the best way to visit in Finland including forests, lakes & castles! With a car you can explore the beauty of Lakeland at your own pace.

Lietvesi Scenic Road (Puumala) - 2020 All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go  (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

1. Helsinki to Porvoo

32 miles

49 minutes

2. Porvoo to Kouvola

54 miles

1 hour 5 minutes

3. Kouvola to Anttola

74 miles

1 hour 35 minutes

4. Anttola to Savonlinna

67 miles    

1 hour 34 minutes

5. Savonlinna to Joutsa      

150 miles

4 hours

6. Joutsa to Helsinki

124 miles 2 hours 12 minutes

 

 

 1. Helsinki

Helsinki is a city by the sea with an entire archipelago at its doorstep. The locals love the sea, often packing a picnic basket and heading for one of the many islands just off the coast. The shoreline that wraps around the Kaivopuisto park is the heart of maritime Helsinki. The city offers lots of opportunities to relax and unwind. Many will enjoy a leisurely jog along the shoreline or through the forests of Keskuspuisto, our very own ‘central park’. Helsinki is also ideal for cycling, with over 450 miles of bike lanes, and finding a bike to rent or borrow is easy.

Travelers are also encouraged to visit Suomenlinna (Viapori/Sveaborg) fortress, one of the biggest sea fortresses in the world, built on islands off the coast of the city. Suomenlinna is one of the most popular attractions in Finland and listed as a UNESCO Word Heritage site as a unique monument to European military architecture. Before heading out on the road be sure to visit Helsinki’s markets. Coffee with a cinnamon bun, doughnut or meat pie at the Market Square or Hakaniemi Market Square is a great way of slowing down and enjoying the city.

Helsinki, Finland

 

 

 2. PORVOO

Porvoo is the second oldest town in Finland. The timeless and unique atmosphere of the Porvoo Old Town is sure to appeal to travelers from all over the world. The cobbled streets are lined with old, doll-house-like houses and on top of the hill a white stone church looks over the river valley. Wonderful in summer, magical during wintertime.

Porvoo, Finland

 

 

 3. KOUVOLA

Kouvola is home to Repovesi National Park. The scenery of Repovesi is made up of vast uninhabited forests, bold steep-faced cliffs and dozens of clear lakes and ponds. Thanks to the varied but always impressive landscape, Repovesi National Park is one of Finland’s favorite trekking destinations.
 

Repovesi National Park, Finland

 

 

 

 4. ANTTOLA & THE MIKKELI REGION

Anttola is a charming village in the Mikkeli Region with shops, a bakery and an idyllic restaurant in the harbor. The Mikkeli Region is famous for natural attractions including the Astuvansalmi rock paintings in Eistiina, Neitvuori and the Hiidenmaa hiking route, the Luonteri canoeing route and the Orava route in Juva. We also recommend seeing the Puumala archipelago, the home of the Saimaa ringed seal. In addition to this, the Mikkeli region is a dream location for anglers, which provides the opportunity for rapids fishing, guided fishing trips and, of course, relaxed angling on a pier. Lake Saimaa is the largest lake in Finland and the fourth largest natural freshwater lake in Europe.

Anttola, Finland

 

 

 

 5. SAVONLINNA

When leaving Anttola, we recommend taking the route from Sulkava to Savonlinna. Along the way (Route 438), you can drive through the beautiful Vilkanharju scenic route and stop by at Holiday Resort Kukkapää for lunch (about 78 miles) Savonlinna is located amidst the thousands of lakes of the labyrinthine Saimaa lake region. In Savonlinna, we recommend you visit the Olavinlinna Castle, and take a sightseeing cruise on a nostalgic steam ship. The Olavinlinna Castle that was established in 1475 to bolster the eastern border defense. The castle has been used for tourist purposes since the 1850s, and an Opera Festival is held there since 1912. To reach Joutsa, we recommend taking a route through Linnansaari National Park, Varkaus & Pieksamaki which offer you many opportunities to stop and take in the scenic Lakeland of Finland.

Olavinlinna Castle, Finland

 

 

 6. JOUTSAU & LEIVONMÄKI NATIONAL PARK

Joutsau is located in Central Finland which is home to numerous lakes, undulating landscapes, lakes and rapids rich with fish and lakeside cabins, as well as cruises on the large lakes of Päijänne, Keitele and Keurusselkä. Central Finland has four national parks, each with its own unique traits. One such national park is Leivonmäki National Park is located in Joutsau. This park is perfect for family fun with many lakes, eskers that were formed during the Ice Age, as well as many well-established duckboard routes.

Joutsau, Finland

 

 

KESKIVIIKKO, 30. SYYSKUUTA 2020
SOUTH KOREA

The Carbon Brief Profile: South Korea

Split by a hair-trigger border, the Korean Peninsula offers the traveller a dazzling range of experiences, beautiful landscapes and 5000 years of culture and history.

 

Welcoming Hospitality

Decorum plays a major role in Korean people’s generosity to outsiders, and their instinctive graciousness possesses a highly endearing quality. Helpfulness abounds, whether it’s at a tourist office, asking someone for directions or finding yourself deep in a conversation with a stranger. Time-honoured Confucian principles have set a template for strong civic pride in a society that is introspective, perhaps, but also decorous and affirmative. You may pass glorious landscapes and gaze out across dazzling seas but don't forget, half of your travel journey will be about the people, and the Korean tribe are a joy to be among.

Urban Buzz

Korea might be known as the Land of the Morning Calm, but dive into its capital Seoul, the powerhouse of Asia’s third-largest economy, and serenity may be the last thing you’ll perceive. This round-the-clock city is constantly in motion, with a work-hard, play-hard mentality that epitomises the nation’s indefatigable, can-do spirit. You can hardly turn a corner without stumbling across a helpful tourist information booth, a bustling subway station or a taxi in this multifaceted metropolis where meticulously reconstructed palaces rub shoulders with teeming night markets and dramatically modern architecture.

Idyllic Countryside

South Korea’s compact size and superb transport infrastructure mean that tranquillity is always within easy reach of urban sprawl. Hike to the summits of craggy mountains – some of which transform into ski slopes come winter – enveloped within densely forested national parks. Get further off the beaten path than you thought possible by sailing to remote islands, where farming and fishing folk welcome you into their homes or simple seafood cafes. Gaze up at the distant stars from serene villages surrounded by rice fields, sleeping in rustic hanok (traditional wooden house) guesthouses.

Festivals & Food

Rest assured the ROK also knows how to rock. A packed calendar of festivals and events means there’s almost always a celebration of some sort to attend wherever you are – it might be Boryeong for its mud fest, or Gwangju for its Biennale or its annual salute to that most Korean of foods: kimchi. Koreans are proud of their culinary culture and rightly so – there's a tantalising array of dishes, flavours, aromas and textures in the local cuisine, to be washed down with plenty of toasting involving a head-spinning array of alcoholic concoctions.

 

 

 

 

 

   BEST TIME TO VISIT SOUTH KOREA

The best times to visit Seoul are from March to May and from September to November, when the weather is mild (average daily high temperatures stay below the mid-70s) and travel expenses are low. If you're a powder hound, you'll want to visit between December and February, when average daytime temperatures stay around the freezing mark and snow can be frequent. It's best to avoid the summer months, also known as monsoon season. During these months, Seoul is uncomfortably humid and full of tourists. What's more, hotel room costs are at fever pitch.

 

March-May - Springtime is arguably Seoul's most beautiful season. The city erupts with budding trees and blooming flowers, including cherry blossoms. The weather is also quite lovely, with high temperatures hovering between 50 and 75 degrees (though you might want to pack a jacket for evenings). Hotel and plane ticket prices are also at their most manageable; however, it's still a good idea to book early. Even though the crowds aren't as thick as the summer season, Seoul's many springtime visitors can limit your lodging options.

June-August - If you don't mind oppressive humidity, long lines, torrential downpours and high travel costs, then come to Seoul in the summertime. But for a more comfortable vacation, opt for a sweet shoulder season (spring or fall). Should you decide to plan a trip for this time of year, be sure to check out the vibrant festivals taking place in Seoul during July and August.

September-November - Seoul experiences pleasant weather in fall: Daily highs stay in the mid-50s and mid-70s, though you may experience some rain here and there. Autumn airfare and hotel prices are also more affordable compared to summer rates, and the thinning crowds mean shorter lines at major attractions. During Chuseok (a public holiday in South Korea), keep in mind that travel could become busier and rates are likely to spike, as the holiday is considered as big as Lunar New Year (the country's biggest holiday).

December-February - Though winter in Seoul is quite chilly – temperatures hover between the 20s and 30s – the cold weather does welcome plenty of opportunities to ski in the mountainous areas near Seoul. Plus, as the temps drop, hotels prices and airfare do, too. You may have to pack some heavy coats and sweaters for a wintertime trip to Seoul, but it'll be lighter on your pocketbook. However, be sure to avoid Lunar New Year. During this time, travel becomes expensive and congested with families traveling to their hometowns to celebrate.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING TO SOUTH KOREA

The vast majority of travellers arrive at the gleaming Incheon international airport; often referred to as “Seoul Incheon” on international departure boards, this offshore beast handles a large and ever-increasing number of international flights. Korean Air and Asiana are the two big Korean airlines, operating direct flights from a number of destinations around the world. Seoul increasingly features as a stopover on round-the-world trips, and the country is well served by dozens of international carriers. Fares increase for travel in the summer months and at Christmas time. A departure tax applies when leaving Korea, but will almost certainly be factored in to your ticket price.

 

 

 

 

 

GETTING AROUND SOUTH KOREA

The best way to get around Seoul is via the subway. You can throw in a taxi ride here and there if you plan on staying out late, or a bus ride if your destination is too far to walk. Seoul is too massive to be explored solely on foot, but it does contain some neighborhoods that were made for walking (Bukchon Village, for example). Because Seoul's public transportation is so cheap and extensive, we advise against renting a car (plus, traffic in the city is legendary). If need be, you can rent a car at either of Seoul's two airports, Incheon International Airport (ICN) and Gimpo International Airport (GMP). The vast majority of international flights come in via Incheon. You can take a taxi from Incheon or Gimpo into Seoul, or if you're looking to save a little coin, the AREX (Airport Railroad Express) train goes directly into the city too.

Subway - The Seoul subway is inexpensive and widespread, making it an effective way to get just about anywhere in the city. So long as you avoid rush hour (8 to 9 a.m. and 6 to 7 p.m. on weekdays) and don't try to ride between midnight and 5:30 a.m. (when the system is closed), you should have a pretty smooth subway experience. The signs, maps and recordings in the stations are in English. Seoul residents use cards known as Multiple Journey Transportation Cards (or T-money cards) to pay for subway rides, with fares starting at 1,350 won (about $1.20) for the first 10 kilometers of travel. T-money cards cost 2,500 ($2.24) won for the card; fares for 10 kilometers traveled cost 1,250 won ($1.12).

Bus - While Seoul's subway system is easy to navigate, its bus routes can be a bit more complicated and daunting for foreign travelers. Most bus maps are not translated into English, and most bus drivers speak only Korean. To ride the bus, you can pay the bus fare in cash on the bus or use a T-money card, which decreases the bus fare by 100 won for adult travelers. Buses and bus stops are color-coded to reflect different routes. Blue buses (main line buses) travel long distances within Seoul city limits and cost 1,300 won ($1.17) for a single journey ride. Green buses, which cost 1,000 won (90 cents), cover the same area but travel shorter distances. Yellow buses run a loop through downtown, and cost 1,100 won (about 98 cents) per ride. Finally, red buses run to Seoul's outer suburbs and cost 2,400 won (about $2.15) per ride. Enter the bus from the front and always exit through the back, unless the bus is only equipped with one door. Buses run all hours of the day thanks to the night bus, marked with an "N" before the bus number.

Taxi - You can hail a cab pretty easily in Seoul, and a short ride can be very inexpensive. Silver, orange or white regular taxis cost between 2,800 to 3,000 won (about $2.50 to $2.68) for the first two kilometers (about 1.25 miles) plus an extra 100 won (about 10 cents) for every eighth of a mile thereafter. Between midnight and 4 a.m., taxi prices increase by 20 percent. Deluxe taxis, which are black with a yellow stripe, cost 3,200 to 5,000 won (between $2.90 and $4.50) for the first three kilometers (about 2 miles), with an additional 200 won (around 18 cents) for every additional tenth of a mile. Aside from the price, the differences between these taxis and regular ones are more passenger space and no nighttime surcharges. There are also international taxis that guarantee bilingual drivers, but those must be reserved in advance (can't be hailed). If you opt for regular taxis, it's a good idea to write down your destination to show to your driver to avoid miscommunication.

Car - Driving around Seoul tends to be hassle-prone: Traffic in the city happens more often than not and drivers can often throw caution to the wind when getting around in a hurry. Avoid the headache of driving and make use of Seoul's public transportation instead – there's probably a subway or bus stop wherever you need to go, and both forms of transport are markedly cheaper than renting a car. However, if the urge to drive is insurmountable, you can always rent your own set of wheels from rental desks at Incheon airport. 

On Foot - Seoul is too big to traverse on foot alone, but it does contain a number of neighborhoods and hiking trails that provide nice areas to put one foot in front of the other. Just be careful when crossing the street – green lights given to pedestrians tend to be short to help the flow of traffic, so cross briskly.

 

 

 

 

WHERE TO STAY IN SOUTH KOREA

 

  • St. John's Hotel

Newly opened in January of 2018, St. John’s Hotel is located along Gangmun Beach in Gangneung. The hotel houses over 1000 guest rooms and suites as well as a seasonal infinity pool, banquet facilities and restaurants. All units at St. John’s are equipped with a flat-screen satellite TV, a desk, a seating area with a coffee table and a small fridge. You will also find an electric kettle and wine glasses. Private bathroom includes a walk-in shower and free toiletries. American breakfast buffet is available every day at Oh! Crab Restaurant. Freshly baked goods, coffee and desserts are available at ANGPANG lobby lounge all day. Gyeonpo Beach and Songjeong Beach are within 1 km from St. John’s Hotel. Gangneung KTX Station is under a 10-minute drive away.

St. John's Hotel in Gangneung, South Korea from 94$, photos, reviews -  zenhotels.com

 

 

 

  • Pyeongchang Ramada Hotel & Suite by Wyndham

Offering a complimentary shuttle bus, Pyeongchang Ramada Hotel & Suite by Wyndham features a convenient accommodation for skiing and having a leisure time with nature. Free parking and free WiFi are available at the property. All rooms feature a flat-screen TV and a terrace with views. Some rooms include a kitchenette. Private bathrooms are fitted with a hair dryer, a shower and free toiletries. Pyeongchang Ramada Hotel & Suite by Wyndham offers a continental or buffet breakfast. Guests can enjoy dining at the on-site restaurant, operated by one of the well known food companies in Korea. The hotel offers a business centre and a 24-hour front desk that can help guests with any queries that they may have. Other convenient amenities also include a coin laundry, a swimming pool and a fitness centre. The accommodation is located 1.8 km from Pyeongchang Olympic Plaza and 4.2 km from Alpensia Cross-Country Skiing Centre. The nearest airport is Yangyang International Airport, 66 km from the property.

 

 

  • Ramada by Wyndham Gangwon Sokcho

Ramada by Wyndham Gangwon Sokcho is located next to Daepo Port, highlighted by a road that extends to Oeongchi Beach, just 1 km away. The hotel houses 556 guestrooms and suites as well as on-site sauna facilities. All rooms and suites come with a private balcony with mountain or sea views. Minibar, bottled water and tea sets are provided in each room. Bathrobes, slippers and free amenities are placed in the private bathroom fitted with a rain shower. Staying guests have complimentary access to the business centre and fitness centre throughout the stay. The indoor swimming pool is available at an additional charge and includes kids’ pools, wet and dry sauna rooms, and sun beds. The hotel has an on-site restaurant serving all-day buffet with local and international dishes. Coffee, tea and light snacks are also available at the café. Ramada by Wyndham Gangwon Sokcho is situated 2 km away from Seorak Beach and 10 km from Seorak Waterpia water park. Yangyang International Airport is a 25-minute south from Ramada Gangwon Sokcho Hotel.

 

 

 

  • The Shilla Jeju

The Shilla Jeju is 10 minutes' walk from the famous Jungmun Beach. It features 6 dining options, a fully-equipped fitness club with 2 spa pools and a sauna, a luxurious spa and free WiFi at the business centre. Rooms of The Shilla Jeju are air-conditioned and features either a mountain or an ocean view. Each room at Shilla is equipped with flat-screen cable TV, a minibar and an in-room safe. There are both indoor and outdoor pools as well as a hot tub at the fitness club which are open for free to staying guests all year round. Children have free access to kids' playroom. Strollers are available for rental free of charge. Guests with an international passport can visit the onsite casino. Free parking is available at The Shilla Jeju. Cheonjee Restaurant serves Korean delicacies and unique Jeju dishes. For traditional Japanese food, visit Hinode at the 3rd floor. All-day buffet is also available at the Park View Restaurant. The hotel is a 10-minute drive from Yeomiji Botanical Garden and a 50-minute drive from Jeju International Airport. Free rental service for infant goods (a cot, a baby chair, a child cup, a baby bathtub etc.) is available upon prior reservation.

A bird's-eye view of The Shilla Jeju

 

 

 

  • Hilton Busan

Featuring ocean views, Hilton Busan is set in seafront location. This hotel provides an ATM machine and newspapers that guests can use. All rooms are fitted with a seating area and a flat-screen TV with cable channels. With a private bathroom, certain units at Hilton Busan also have a sea view. A buffet breakfast is available each morning at the property. Various dining options are available at the interactive on-site restaurant with open kitchen. The hotel also has a rooftop bar with ocean views, offering cocktails and a la carte menu. Guests at Hilton Busan can enjoy using the fitness centre, sauna as well as rooft pool with sun deck. The hotel also boasts jet spa and kids pool. Hilton Busan is situated 9 km from Haeundae Beach and Busan Aquarium.

Busan City hotels - Hilton Busan - Busan City

 

 

 

  • Skybay Hotel Gyeongpo

Located at the heart of 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic site, Skybay Gyeongpo Hotel is just within a short stroll of Lake Gyeongpo and Gyeongpo Beach. Boasting its cleanest quality, this iconic 5-star hotel offers indoor/outdoor pools, fitness centre and other top-of-the-line facilities. All rooms feature a terrace with either an ocean or lake view. Some rooms are equipped with a spa bath. Skybay Gyeongpo Hotel provides free WiFi, free private parking and 24-hour front desk. Guests can enjoy Infiniti Pool and Restaurant Soiree on the 20th floor with ocean view. The all-day dining Restaurant One is also available on the first floor. The nearest airport is Yangyang International Airport, about 40-minute drive from the property.

 

 

 

  • Dignity Hotel

Set in Yangyang, within less than 1 km of Osan Beach and 2.7 km of Naksansa Temple, Dignity Hotel offers accommodation with a bar and free WiFi throughout the property as well as free private parking for guests who drive. The property is situated 3.5 km from Seorak Beach, 4 km from Osan-ri Prehistory Museum and 16 km from Hajodae Beach. All rooms have a balcony. The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. At Dignity Hotel all rooms come with air conditioning and a private bathroom. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy an Asian breakfast. Dignity Hotel offers a terrace. Speaking Korean and English, staff will be happy to provide guests with practical information on the area at the 24-hour front desk. The nearest airport is Yangyang International Airport, 7 km from the hotel.

Book Dignity Hotel in Yangyang | Hotels.com

 

 

 

  • Shinhwa Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels

Located in Seogwipo, 11 km from Jeju Jungmun Resort, Shinhwa Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre. Among the various facilities of this property are a bar, a shared lounge and a garden. The accommodation offers a 24-hour front desk, an ATM and currency exchange for guests. Guest rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel each room is fitted with a wardrobe and a private bathroom. Buffet and American breakfast options are available daily at Shinhwa Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels. The accommodation offers a children's playground. The property has an on-site hot tub, hairdresser's and business centre. Alive Museum Jeju is 11 km from Shinhwa Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels, while Shilla Hotel Casino is 12 km away. The nearest airport is Jeju International Airport, 28 km from the hotel.

A bird's-eye view of Shinhwa Jeju Shinhwa World Hotels

 

 

 

  • Paradise City

Paradise City features an indoor and outdoor pool open all year round as well as a fitness centre and a children's playground. Free WiFi access and free private parking is available at the hotel. Each room is equipped with a flat-screen TV and a complimentary minibar. En suite bathroom is fitted with a bath and a toilet with an electronic bidet. Extras include slippers, a bathrobe, free toiletries and a hairdryer. Guests may enjoy playing darts, billiard, bowling and PlayStation games at Paradise City. Incheon Port International Passenger Terminal is 12 km from Paradise City, while Incheon Port Coast Passenger Terminal is 13 km away. The nearest airport is Incheon International Airport, 2 km from the property.

A bird's-eye view of Paradise City

 

 

 

  • Marriott Jeju Shinhwa World Hotel

Providing free WiFi in all rooms, Jeju Shinhwa World Marriott Resort features indoor and outdoor pools, spa facilities, a casino and a business centre. Each room is fitted with a safety deposit box, minibar, flat-screen TV and desk. Private bathroom includes a bath, bathrobe, hairdryer and bath amenities by Thann. Guests can store luggage at the 24-hour front desk or enjoy a drink at The Islet Lounge. Including an electric vehicle charging station, private parking is provided on site. Breakfast is offered at Sky On Five Dining Restaurant from 06:30 to 10:30. All-day-dining buffet is available from 6:30 until 22:30 at Café The Islet, while Chinese dishes prepared by chef Alan Chen are served at Le Chinois. Jeju Shinhwa World Marriott Resort is a 40-minute drive from Jeju International Airport. Alive Museum Jeju and Hyeopjae Beach are both less than 15 km away from the 5-star hotel.

A view of the pool at Marriott Jeju Shinhwa World Hotel or nearby

 

 

 

 

 

PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN SOUTH KOREA

Much of the Korean travel experience is defined by the hustle and bustle of the country’s sprawling metropolises. But for those willing to venture beyond the city limits into South Korea’s rural destinations, unique cultural encounters, regional culinary specialties and stunning natural landscapes await. South Korea preserves a large amount of tradition as well as natural beauty. As a result, it is a country full of spectacular sights of both industrialized, urban cities as well as cultural, suburban and rural areas. It is a diverse country for both city tourists and wild adventurers.

 

 

  • Namhansanseong Fortress

2,000 years ago Namhansanseong Fortress served as one of the four largest fortresses that protected the country’s capital, back then called Silla, from Tang China. Today, it currently stands as a historic monument for tourists in the Namhansanseong Provincial Park on top of Mount Namhan.

Official Site of Korea Tourism Org.: Namhansanseong Fortress

 

 

 

  • Gobungun, Changyeong

Gobungun, Changyeong is a green grassy field that has the appearance of many small hills. It is actually a site of over 180 ancient tombs that date to the fifth and sixth centuries. The majority of the tombs were built for those of royalty or high governmental status.

8 Beautiful Place in Korea That You Have to Know Part 1

 

 

 

  • Gyeonbokgung Palace

Established in 1395, Gyeonbokgung Palace houses the Throne Hall, which stands as one of the most, if not the most, iconic structures of the Joseon Dynasty. It was the center for essential state affairs as well as storage for ancient Korean royal books that were looted by the French military.

Gyeongbokgung Palace: Tickets & Changing of the Guard Hours

 

 

 

  • Changgyeonggung Palace

Located in the heart of Seoul, Changgyeonggung Palace served as the residential palace for queens and concubines of the Jeoson dynasty. During the Japanese colonial rule, the building became a zoo and a botanical garden, but later returned to its former refined status.

What you need to know about Changgyeonggung Palace - Asia Travel Log

 

 

 

  • Inwangsan

Inwangsan is a 338-meter high mountain that hosts numerous castles built on the outskirts of Seoul to protect the city from foreign invasions. Today it serves as a popular tourist spot to view of Seoul’s features, including the palaces, N Seoul tower, and the Korean president’s residence, the Blue House.

Seoul Hiking Tour - Mt. Inwangsan & Bugaksan - Trazy, Korea's #1 Travel  Guide

 

 

 

  • Seoul Seonggwak Fortress Wall

An 18.2-kilometer long stone wall that served to protect Seoul from foreigners during the Joseon dynasty, the Seoul Seonggwak Fortress Wall is a historic site that is part of a walking tour program. Starting from Dongdaemun, tourists walk along the fortress wall and continue on to Naksan’s park and museum.

Seoul Seonggwak, or Fortress Wall | Fortress wall, Natural landmarks,  Landmarks

 

 

 

  • Upo Wetlands

Known as South Korea’s largest natural swamp, which covers 5,500 square kilometers, Upo Wetlands is home of over 1,000 species. The government enlisted it to become a part of the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance to protect it from environmental degradation, and has been protecting it since 1998.

Changnyeong Upo Wetland | Places to visit, Places to go, Tourist  destinations

 

 

 

  • Andong Hahoe Village

Known for its preservation of most of its original structures, Andong Hahoe Village is South Korea’s most iconic folk village that has been a birthplace for scholars and nobles of the Yu clan since the 16th century. Today, it remains as a one-clan community that has conserved many of its traditions.

KD 29 Andong Hahoe Folk Village Day Tour -

 

 

 

  • Samhwasa

For centuries, Samhwasa has been a scenic point for inspiration. Poets, as well as painters, sought out the Samhwasa Temple to view the West peak of Dutasan Mountain, which was said to look like a phoenix and a crane, and the East peak like a dragon and a tiger.

Samhwasa Temple travel guidebook –must visit attractions in Donghae-si –  Samhwasa Temple nearby recommendation – Trip.com

 

 

 

  • Yonghwa Beach

Yonghwa Beach is unique in that both seawater and freshwater are available due to the Hwacheon stream. Thanks to its accessibility to both salt and freshwater, it is one of South Korea’s most valued sources for fresh seafood. In fact, many travellers visit Yonghwa Beach solely for the seafood.

Seascape Of Yonghwa Beach At Jangho Harbor High-Res Stock Video Footage -  Getty Images

 

 

 

  • Cheonjiyeon Falls

Known as the connection of the sky with the land, Cheonjiyeon Falls is a legendary site where seven divine beings descended from heaven to bathe in the pond: the name means ‘the pond of the gods.’ To respect the holy space, a Seven Fairies Festival is held every May.

Cheonjiyeonpokpo Falls [UNESCO Global Geopark] (천지연폭포 (제주도 국가지질공원)) |  Official Korea Tourism Organization

 

 

 

  • Miryang Maneosa

According to legends, the temple Miryang Maneosa was once home of the son of the dragon king, who was turned into the five-meter-long rock that is on the temple. Rumors claim that any woman who could not conceive sons would be able to after wishing on the five-meter tall rock.

40 Most Beautiful Places in Korea #4: Miryang Maneosa | asiatravelheavenly

 

 

 

  • Mount Halla

The highest mountain in South Korea, is Jeju Island’s most iconic milestone that has been designated as one of South Korea’s Natural Monuments. It is home of over 4,000 different types of animal species, especially around a crater lake called Baengnokdam.

 

Local Guides Connect - The Road to the Sky of South Korea, Mt. Halla -  Local Guides Connect

 

 

 

  • Darangee Village

A small ecological village in Namhae-gun, Darangee Village maintains its cultural and traditional efforts to preserve over 100 steps on farmlands on a 45-degree mountain slope. Due to the village’s dedication to its maintenance efforts, it produces a large amount of the nation’s rich natural resources such as crabs.

Darangee Village | Village Korea | Madan Lal Chhimpa | Flickr

 

 

 

  • Yangdong Folk Village

A traditional village that maintains its Neo-Confucian culture and architectural style of the early Joseon Dynasty, Yangdong Folk Village stands as the most valuable among South Korea’s six folk villages. It is one of the largest villages in South Korea that preserves ancient aristocratic lifestyles as well as folklore materials.

UNESCO Heritage - Gyeongju City Tour - Iamyourguide

 

 

 

  • Bomun Pavilion, Gyoengju

Located in Gyeongju, a city nicknamed ‘a museum with no walls,’ Bomun Pavilion is South Korea’s prized gazebo that is adjacent to a pond, where one could see cherry blossoms during spring, luxuriant green leaves during summer, ruby and mustard flora during autumn, and soft white snow during winter.

Bomun Pavilion, Gyeongju (경주 보문정)

 

 

 

  • Haeinsa Temple, Hapcheon

Haeinsa Temple is a significant milestone that houses some of the country’s most precious religious artifacts. These include the world’s oldest intact Buddhist canon, the Tripitaka Koreana, the oldest wooden Buddha statue in South Korea, and UNESCO world heritage storage hall of Buddhist Sutras called Janggyeong Panjeon.

Haeinsa Temple in Korea as One of the Biggest Buddhist Temple in South  Korea - Buddhis Media

 

 

 

  • Boseong Green Tea Field

An enormous field full of green tea leaves alongside the slopes of several hills, the Goseong Green Tea Field produces over 40 percent of South Korea’s tea leaves. To celebrate the flourishing fields, the neighboring residents hold a festival every May and decorate the fields with small colorful light bulbs every winter.

Korea Herald

 

 

 

  • Anapji (Anap Pond)

The Anapji or Anap Pond is an artificial pond man-made around 1,500 years ago during the Silla dynasty as part of the palace where flowers and birds flourished. To this day, three structures still stand on three separate artificial islands with patches of lotus flowers framing the pond.

Anapji Pond, a photo from Gyeongsangbukdo, North | TrekEarth

 

 

 

  • Cheongsando Island

Despite its nomenclature meaning ‘Blue Mountain Island’ for its panoramic green mountains and deep blue sea, Cheongsando Island was once part of a military base to prevent foreigners from invading. Today, however, it is famed for its residents pursuing a slow life, making it Asia’s first ‘Slow City'.

WOW KOREA: [Travel Korea][Tour Information][visit Korea] Slow City -  Welcome to Cheong-San-Do

 

 

 

  • Sankwang Temple

An emblem of traditional Korean architecture and culture in the southernmost part of South Korea, the Sankwang Temple is where the largest annual Lotus Lantern Festival in the country is held. During the festivities, the temple is decorated with numerous lanterns with geometric as well as lotus shapes.

Samgwangsa Temple in Busan – The Sajin

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT TO EAT IN SOUTH KOREA

In recent years South Korea has become better known for its technology than its food. However, thanks to delicacies like kimchi, which has become a global sensation, things are beginning to change. Here are is a list of South Korean foods you have to try.

 

 

  • Hoeddeok (sweet syrupy pancakes)

Known as a sweeter version of the Western pancake, hoeddeok, or sometimes spelled as hotteok, is a popular Korean street food, especially during the winter season. It is essentially flat, circular dough that is filled with a mixture of cinnamon, honey, brown sugar, and small pieces of peanut and cooked on a griddle. The delicacy has crunchy exterior and soft interior as well as an irresistible flavor.

Hoeddeok - Korean sweet syrupy pancakes - EatWellCoEatWellCo

 

 

 

  • Bulgogi (marinated beef barbecue)

A juicy, savory dish of grilled marinated beef, bulgogi is one of the most popular Korean meat dishes throughout the world, and was ranked as the 23rd most delicious food in the world according to CNN Travel’s reader’s poll in 2011. It is often grilled with garlic and sliced onions to add flavor to the meat. The meat is usually wrapped in lettuce and it is also traditionally eaten with ssamjang (a thick, red spicy paste).

Beef bulgogi - Caroline's Cooking

 

 

 

  • Samgyeopsal (pork strips)

One of the most popular Korean dishes in South Korea, samgyeopsal consists of grilled slices of pork belly meat that are not marinated or seasoned. They are commonly dipped in seasoning made of salt and pepper mixed in sesame seed oil, and then wrapped in lettuce along with grilled slices of garlic, grilled slices of onion, shredded green onions, and kimchi. It is one of the most common dishes found in any Korean restaurant throughout the world.

Samgyupsal Gui (Grilled Pork Belly) - Korean Bapsang

 

 

 

  • Japchae (stir-fried noodles)

Often served as a side dish during lunch or dinner, japchae is a traditional Korean noodle dish made up of stir-fried sweet potato, thinly shredded vegetables, beef, and a hint of soy sauce and sugar. Depending on the chef, additional ingredients like mushrooms are added to the mix. Japchae is known for its sweet and flavorful taste and its soft yet slightly chewy texture.

Easy japchae (Korean stir-fried noodles and vegetables) recipe -  Maangchi.com

 

 

 

  • Kimchi (fermented vegetables)

One of the oldest and probably the most essential dishes in Korean cuisine, kimchi is a spicy and sour dish made up of fermented vegetables. It is prepared with various kinds of ingredients, but the most common main ingredient is cabbage. Kimchi is popular among foreigners for its unique flavor, as well as its high nutritional value, fiber content and low calorie content. However, for Koreans, it is most popular due to its significant cultural value. Without kimchi, dinner is considered incomplete.

Vegetarian and vegan kimchi (Chaesik-kimchi: 채식김치) recipe - Maangchi.com

 

 

 

  • Ddukbokki (spicy rice cake)

Ddukbokki, also spelled tteokbokki, is a common spicy Korean food made of cylindrical rice cakes, triangular fish cake, vegetables, and sweet red chili sauce. It is often sold by pojangmacha (street vendors). People enjoy ddeukbokki for the combination of spicy and sweet flavors.

Tteokbokki (Spicy Stir-fried Rice Cakes) - Korean Bapsang

 

 

 

  • Sundubu-jjigae (soft tofu stew)

Served in a large stone bowl, sundubu -jjigae is a common spicy Korean stew generally made of dubu (tofu), vegetables, mushrooms, seafood, beef or pork, and gochujang (chili paste). Depending on the chef and region, some ingredients are removed, substituted or added to the mix. Though different variations exist, traditionally, a raw egg is placed on top of the stew and mixed with the soup before serving to add additional flavor to the dish.

Sundubu Jjigae Spicy Korean Tofu Stew with Seafood Recipe

 

 

 

  • Bibimbap (mixed rice)

Bibimbap is essentially a bowl of mixed ingredients including, but not limited to, rice, namul (seasoned and sautéed vegetables), mushrooms, beef, soy sauce, gochujang (chili pepper paste), and a fried egg. The ingredients found in bibimbap vary by region, and the most famous versions of the dish are found in Jeonju, Tongyeong, and Jinju.

Korean 'mixed rice' (bibimbap)

 

 

 

  • Seolleongtang (ox bone soup)

A traditional hot Korean soup made from ox bones, ox meat and briskets, seolleongtang is a local dish of Seoul, often seasoned with salt, ground black pepper, chopped green onions, or minced garlic according to the consumer’s taste. The broth is of a milky white, cloudy color and is often eaten with rice. Seolleongtang is known for its soft yet chewy texture and flavorful broth, and can be found in most Korean restaurants in Seoul.

Ox (beef) bone soup, Seolleongtang | Crazy Korean Cooking

 

 

 

  • Haemul Pajeon (seafood vegetable pancake)

A version of pajeon, which is a pancake-like Korean dish made predominantly with green onions, egg batter, wheat flour, and rice flour, haemul pajeon incorporates seafood to the common pancake. Common seafood ingredients used include, but are not limited to, oysters, shrimp, squid, and clams. Haemul pajeon is generally eaten as a main dish and is known for its soft and chewy texture as well as its mixture of seafood flavors.

Hobak Buchim (Korean Zucchini Pancakes) - Korean Bapsang

 

 

 

  • Soondae (blood sausage)

Soondae, or sometimes spelled as sundae, is a unique Korean dish made of pig’s intestines stuffed with several ingredients such as noodles, pork blood, and barley. Versions of soondae differ in fillings and wrappings, and are often prepared differently according to the province or city in South Korea. Nevertheless, though the recipes differ, every soondae is chewy on the outside and soft and flavorful on the side, creating an interesting mix of textures as well as flavors.

Soondae Bloody Soondae : Korean Blood Sausage (순대) – THE RED CELLAR

 

 

 

  • Naengmyeon (cold buckwheat noodles)

Naengmyeon is a common cold Korean noodle dish that consists of long, thin noodles, cucumbers, slices of Korean pear, slices of beef and a hard-boiled egg. The noodles are often made of buckwheat, potatoes, and sweet potatoes, but can also be made of arrowroot and kudzu, depending on the type of naengmyeon. It is a popular dish especially during the summer to cool off under the scorching heat and thick humid air in South Korea.

Mul-naengmyeon (Korean cold noodles in chilled broth) 물냉면 recipe -  Maangchi.com

 

 

 

  • Hobakjuk (pumpkin porridge)

A sweet and grainy dish, hobakjuk is a traditional Korean porridge made from steamed pumpkin and glutinous rice that has been soaked in water. Though its appearance is simple, it is extraordinarily sweet and flavorful due to the pumpkin. It is a popular meal during breakfast hours, and is often a perfect meal choice for people who are unwell and unable to consume heavy meals. It is served both hot and cold but is best when hot.

Pumpkin porridge (Hobakjuk) recipe - Maangchi.com