Visit London on a Budget

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Visiting anywhere on a budget can be challenging, especially London, because this is among the world’s most expensive city. Each year, many prospective tourists — people who would enjoy themselves very much in this city — bypass London because of high costs.

But it is possible to visit this vibrant, historic city on a budget. Here are some strategies for dealing with the price of a trip to London. It’s important however to think about how much it will cost you to get here in airfare against any frustration you will feel about missing important things due to a shortage of cash.


Accomodation

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The one thing you can’t escape is the cost of hotels in central London. Look a bit further out from the centre in zone 2 (where they will be cheaper and quieter at night when you want to sleep) and consider something like Air B&B.


Eating

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Eating out can be expensive if you fall for the tourist restaurants in the West End. At lunchtimes grab something to eat at a supermarket and picnic (even right in the centre of town there are nice places to sit like Soho Square). In the evenings think about going out of zone 1. Prices drop massively and you can get a well priced meal in a Turkish, Chinese or Vietnamese restaurant. Look for places that offer a prix fixe evening menu and don’t be seduced by extras on the menu, they really mount up (go for a drink in a pub afterwards)


Entertainment/Shopping

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If you stay in Bloomsbury you will be within a few minutes walk of the British Library, the British Museum and the Wellcome Collection. A good half an hour walk will take you to the Museum of London and the Gresham Lectures. All of these are free.

go to Fortum and Mason for a look at food souvenirs but shop at one of the big supermarket chains and buy British marmalade there for a fraction of the price. If you want U.K. designed clothes go to TK Maxx where they sell last year’s ranges at a discount- everyone who lives here does!


Sightseeing

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Lots of the big attractions are free (you can either see them from outside like Buckingham Palace or go in for free like the Tate Modern). The best places cost nothing. A walk along the river Thames or the streets of Soho or Mayfair tell you more about London that any paid for attraction ever will.

A hop-on, hop-off London sightseeing bus tour is great if you’re short on time or want to get an overview of the city before you dig into its specifics. This company has five different routes and live commentary which is always better than recorded versions.

Some of the best known tourist attractions are also the most expensive and at the same time least interesting. Ones to avoid are Madame Tussaud’s (tedious wax works, long queues), Ripley’s Believe it or Not (more waxworks and dullness) and the London Dungeon (eye wateringly expensive and amusing if you’re about 7 years old) and The London Eye (queues, queues, and more queues)

Things for free

British Museum – This is my favorite museum in London and it’s completely free to enter. The famous Rosetta Stone is here along with thousands of other artifacts from around the world. 

National Gallery – Located in Trafalgar Square, you won’t pay anything to see famous paintings from the likes of da Vinci and Van Gogh.

Tate Modern – This modern art gallery is in Bankside and is one of the largest museums of both contemporary and modern art in the world.

Museum of London – I love learning about the history of a new city I’m visiting, so stop by the Museum of London if you feel the same. You’ll see the city in a different light when you leave.

But how do I get around?? The tourist oystercard often has discounts and promotions available throughout the year. You can order one to be sent to your home address in your home country before you travel.  It means as soon as you arrive at Heathrow Airport you can go straight on the tube towards your hotel. Or even just take a bus. The 140 bus goes from Heathrow to Northolt and Harrow. Northolt for central line into London, Harrow for Metropolitan Line into Central London.


Travel

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It’s very doable to visit London on a budget. You can make it as cheap as you want or as lavish as you want. A great way to start planning a cheap trip to London is by figuring what parts are most important to you


Saving money

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On a general note, if you are in an area with lots of tourists go two streets away from the main crowds. You’ll generally find more interesting things to see, places will cost less and the crowds will magically disappear.

Don’t pay for internet access or use up your data allowance. Go to one of the coffee chains like Costa or Starbucks and use theirs for free – everyone else does. If you’re feeling really cheap don’t even buy coffee, just lurk in the doorway to get a signal.


 

Featured

Top 10 Spring Break Spots

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For many students, spring break is the perfect opportunity to let off some steam before the stress of finals and graduation. But for a destination to be spring break-worthy, it’s got to be affordable, accessible and popular among the college cohort. Considering these factors, plus editor insight and traveler sentiment, Spring Break really is the great American contribution to leisure travel. A week every year where the youngest, sexiest people in America go somewhere hot, with virtually no rules, and nobody there to recognize them. It’s a week where you can be whomever you want, do things you wouldn’t dare do back home, and generally enjoy life without much consequence.


Punta Cana

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This amazing destination has everything you will need to have an unforgettable trip. There’s plenty to do and everything you could want is at your fingertips.

Punta Cana has a varied, active nightlife and every day there is another addition to the growing list of establishments that offer night time entertainment. Tons of Spring Breakers, amazing clubs, open bar, what else could you want?

But this destination is great for families, too, who can easily get away from all the crowds to enjoy some exciting family activities or simply a bit of R&R


Cancun

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Cancun has all the makings of a quintessential spring break getaway. Along with its clean, white-sand beaches, it boasts budget-friendly, all-inclusive packages and a rollicking nightlife scene (don’t miss Coco Bongo). Despite its “Man-cun” reputation, the dude-heavy originator of all-you-can-drink SB debauchery is still going strong. No, it’s not the world capital of Spring Break that it once was, but what the city has lost in US college kids, it’s picked up in students from South America, Europe, and Canada.


Miami

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At first glance, Miami might seem like the ultimate stateside Spring Break destination. Crazy nightclubs, raging pool parties, and strip clubs that stay open 24 hours. That all said, the city can get expensive, and if your Spring Break coincides with Ultra, the price of hotels might necessitate stuffing six people in a room. Drinks can get costly too, so don’t forget to pack your wallet. The upside (if you’re a guy): The ratio of guys to girls is always favorable, since the clubs here keep a hyper-strict door. The trick, of course, is getting past the bouncer.


The Bahamas

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If you’re looking for a bit of Las Vegas in the Caribbean, the Bahamas might just be the spring break destination for you. When you’re not testing Lady Luck in Nassau’s twinkling casinos, barhop in Freeport. Having trouble finding affordable lodging and airfare? Consider a cruise. You’ll have plenty of choice when it comes to finding the right resort for a memorable spring break. Go with your friends, family, or both — and enjoy nothing but fun in the sun.


Orlando

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Your first reaction might be, “Yeah, great, Spring Break… from FIFTH GRADE!”

Orlando is home to the most popular theme parks in the country, it’s no wonder why this is one of the best places to go on spring break. Strategically plan your trip so you can visit both Disney World and Universal Orlando during your stay.


CABO SAN LUCAS

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Cabo is a well known tourist destination favored by the rich & famous, as well as an up & coming Spring Break hot spot. If you want to have an exclusive & unique experience, this is your spot. Cabo San Lucas has a well-earned reputation for rowdy, uninhibited nightlife. The after-dark action in Los Cabos is by no means restricted to the bars, clubs, and cantinas that crowd downtown San Lucas.


Montego Bay

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If it’s mojo you’re after this Spring Break, look no further than Jamaica’s MoBay,  a.k.a. Montego Bay, for some of the most rhythmic partying and good vibes you’ll experience anywhere. Considered Jamaica’s Spring Break capital, a week-long jaunt to the beautiful island will fill you not only with Red Stripe and jerk chicken, but a love and appreciation for the country that gave birth to the great Bob Marley. Along the famous Gloucester Avenue in the center of Montego Bay, known as the Hip Strip, you’ll find the hottest beaches and the best nightclubs for your Spring Break reggaeway to Jamaica.


South Padre Island

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If you’re looking for nonstop beach and pool parties, budget-friendly lodging and celebrity-hosted events, South Padre Island is for you. While it’s family-friendly for the rest of the year, college coeds flock here during the month of March. So if crowded sands sound like a spring break nightmare, this Texas retreat may not be right for you.


Las Vegas, Nevada

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What better place than Sin City to let loose while classes are on hold? While Las Vegas brings the party every day of the year, the festivities head into overdrive in the spring break season. During the day, gather your friends and head to one of the famous all-day pool parties—if you’re feeling daring, places like the Bare Pool Lounge have opted to keep their pool parties clothing optional. At night, plan your own “casino-crawl”, hopping from party to party and trying your luck.


Jamaica

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What’s not to love about reggae music, cream-colored beaches and all-inclusive resorts? That’s what you’ll get with a spring break in Jamaica. Those looking to relax and lounge on the beach will find upscale accommodations near Negril, while more adventurous types should choose a resort closer to Ocho Rios. No matter where you stay, expect plenty of food with jerk seasoning and a favorable exchange rate

Featured

How to Travel with only a Carry-on

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I didn’t always recognize the beauty of traveling light. Packing with just a carry-on is so hard for me. I tend to over pack and half the time I only wear a few things that I pack so I have a lot of things I don’t need. I usually pack like I’m going somewhere for 2 weeks but I’ll be gone for only 3/4 days. Yikes I know, so many things I dont need. 

After some trial and error, I think I have figured out how to pack with just a carry-on. The following will help you choose what to pack for a trip, and fit it all into a bag you can actually lift, so you know how to travel with only a carry-on on bag.


First thing first, whatever airline you have booked with, make sure you look to see what the size of the carry-on should be. Each airline is different, but it’s usually 19-20 inches. Also make sure you have up-to-date information on limits and restrictions- on what you can and can not take. 

The next thing is pick your bag wisely. You’re taking one bag, but what that almost always really means is one suitcase (or large backpack or duffel bag) and one purse or tote. You can also include a smaller bag that packs flat. This is useful if your plans include activities where you won’t want to carry your handbag or messenger bag.

Any bags you take should be light and comfortable to lift. I was in a store the other day and I was looking at luggage and I picked up the lightest and most comfortable suitcase, However I did’t get it, but it was really nice. Ok so now you have your bag, whats next? You have to figure out what you need.

The key word here is “need”. Taking that amazing pair of heels or sneakers just in case or that extra coat are not going to be on the list. Before your final pack, lay out all of your clothes and then take half of what you think you’ll need. Sounds tough, right? It really is, But, you have probably taken a number of trips before where some supposed necessities never saw the light of day (Me). Also take a look at the weather, that will help you determine what to take. 

If you’re travelling somewhere with cold weather, you’ll likely want to take a big, warm coat. But if you pack that in your carry-on, there won’t be much room for anything else! Instead of lugging a huge coat around with you, pack lots of layers that you can easily mix and match – you’ll still stay warm on your travels, have more flexibility in what you can wear, they’ll be lighter and also take up less space in your bag. Limit the what if scenarios. I have fallen vitim to this. Packing light requires a little bit of compromise and sacrifice, so be strict with your packing and be honest with how necessary certain items are.

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Ok now you have your bag, laid out your clothes that you are going to pack, now its time to pack. Wrap shoes in plastic bags and place them at the sides or corners of the bottom of your bag to help it hold its shape. Stash extra plastic bags too. They take up no space and are perfect for laundry or anything that gets wet. Another tip is to roll your clothes, don’t fold. Packing cubes come in handy. They let you fit so much more in your carry-on.

So you’ve packed your carry-on bag, but you don’t want to be that person who has to get something out of the overhead luggage bin every half an hour. Most airlines allow you to pack a personal item bag (but do check this with the airline you’re flying with!), so put all of the things you’ll need during your flight in there to place under the seat in front of you. Like your laptop, phone, books, pastport, chargers, etc. 

But the question is ..why travel with a carry-on? 

Boarding passes can be pre-printed on-line for most airlines, and one can sail through security without stopping at the airline counter to check-in luggage, thus avoiding long line-ups and not having to be at the airport as early.

Cost savings – many airlines now charge for checked baggage. 

All your belongings are with you, so no lost luggage and no burst liquids. 

By the time people wait at the airport carousal for their luggage, we get first dibs on taxis and are nestled in our hotel room sooner.

It’s quite simple: if you have limited or no space in your bag to put anything else in it, you don’t have the option to buy things and bring them home, well unless you buy another bag!

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What are your tips for packing for a carry-on only trip? Tell me in the comments below.

Featured

48 Hours in Las Vegas

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Considering the sheer number of things there are to do in Las Vegas, spending just two days there can get pretty hectic. The key is to come up with a plan of attack—a way to make sure you hit some of the best hot spots—but also leave enough breathing room for relaxation.

Whether a poker player, adventure lover, or dayclub pool party hopper, I can guarantee  you that you can find a lot to do in Vegas that’s your speed. So today I’m coming at you with my Las Vegas travel guide on how to do Sin City for a weekend.


Day 1

Ok, so you have made it to Vegas,  you have your bags but where are you staying? For the sake of this post, lets say you are staying at Caesars Palace, which conveniently located in the heart of the famed Las Vegas Strip. If you love Fine dining, exciting nightlife and entertainment, relaxing spas and salons, boutique shopping, and a buzzing casino then you’ve come to the right place.

Ok you got your hotel all set up, now what? Go to the Bacchanal. Located inside Caesar’s Palace, this buffet has anything and everything you want..but at a price. I would head hear first before you partake in all of the drinking and debauchery

You’ve had breakfast now its time to spend a little bit money…Las Vegas is the gambling mecca for professionals and novices alike. Whether you enjoy the penny slots or are a seasoned poker player, no trip is a complete without trying to go home with a little extra money.

Now you have won some money or lost some money…where to next? it’s time to hit up Vegas’ legendary pool party scene. This all Depends on what time of year you visit Las Vegas, one of the pleasures of staying along the Strip is spending time soaking in the summer sun poolside. Most of the well known hotels offer cabanas, entertainment, lots of bars, and a host of other activities to keep your mind off the heat.

Okay so we are going to be a  tourist for a mintue, but after a day of drinking, you need some food head over to Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar, it’s so over-the-top

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Once you’ve had a bite to eat, you can get ready for a shopping experience that’ll blow your mind! Vegas is home to all kinds of shopping, so whether you’re into high-end fashion or hipster thrift, you will always find something in Vegas. Also Caesar’s Forum Shops is connected to the hotel and offers ancient Roman streets, talking statues, exotic fish aquariums, top dining experiences and a nice variety of popular boutiques and stores 

Once you’ve built up a bit of an appetite, head to the Galleria Mall in Henderson and grab a table at Gen Korean BBQ House…Now your ready to hit the town, 

If you’re into party scene, then try one of Vegas’ newer clubs, then hit up Omnia! This place has one of the best views of the strip! Regular headliners include Calvin Harris, etc. 

If your not done, then head to the Peppermill, you willeave Vegas with a good story. 

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Day 2

 

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Today is all about grabbing quick bites so that you can keep your Vegas experience moving. After a good night’s rest, some water and a few Advil later, start the day off at the Donut Bar, you need this to absorb all of that alcohol from the night before. I love donuts, so this place is a must. 

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Now its time to just wander the strip for a bit. This is home to numerous casinos, alluring you with their offer of free refreshments and the chance to press your luck. Don’t miss out on the Fountains of Bellagio, which go off on a synchronized “dance” to music every half hour and are absolutely free to anyone passing by. Even though it is a bit touristy if you ask me. 

After you get the strip out of your system, its time for some shopping. For me,  Las Vegas has some of the best shopping in the US! I hope you didn’t lose all of your money at the casino or shopping the day before. 

I have to say the coolest thing is the Pinball Hall of Fame, which is a museum for pinball machines, it’s pretty cool. It brings on the nostalgic feel.  After all of that, you need food, Try Pop Up Pizza, Pizza Rock or if you want burgers, try Burger Bar, FukuBurger or Heart Attack Grill. 

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On your last day I suggest going to the spa. I’m not one for spa’s but if thats your jam, go for it. Indulge in a relaxing spa treatment at the Sahra Spa & Hammam.This place will leave feeling with senses awakened and at peace. Your muscles will be sore from walking and dancing and will put your soul at rest for the long slog home.

The stories and memories…well, they have to stay in Vegas.  

 

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London vs. Paris

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What are some great rivalries? New York Pizza vs Chicago, The Warroirs vs Lakers, Duke vs North Carolina, Alabama vs Every Football team, but what about cities? The rivalry that comes to mind is London vs Paris. The question of which city is better will probably remain unanswered for generations to come.


Food 

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I have never been to Paris or London BUT I have had traditional food from both places. While its been limited, I have had it. Now I have talked to people who have been to both cities.

Paris has earned a global renown for the quality of its cuisine. Haute Cuisine – literally ‘high cooking’ in French – is seen as the standard for European cookery. The city’s restaurants have earned a total of 81 Michelin Stars compared to London’s 61. For these reasons, we have to give the prize in our first category to Paris.

However, Don’t write London off, though. With hundreds of restaurants and an innovative food scene, London is always evolving as one of the most interesting culinary landscapes in the world. The deeply entwined cultural mix of London means that we enjoy a diverse palette, from delicious curries, sumptuous steaks.

If you trip to London then you stand the best chance to taste some of the best traditional British foods.

However, France is considered to be the ‘world capitol of food’ and here in Paris you have the best opportunity to taste the popular trending French food.

Nonetheless, French food is soooo good so, in that way, Paris wins. However, London has such an amazing selection of food from all over the world. In addition, the quality of food and produce is roughly the same in both cities.


Tate Modern vs Le Louvre

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The amount of art in these cities will overwhelm you. Whether you’re interested in renaissance art or something a little more modern, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to art galleries and museums in London and Paris. London houses some of the world’s best modern art galleries including the Tate Modern and Barbican, while in Paris you can spend whole afternoons looking at iconic sculptures in the Musée Rodin or post-impressionist masterpieces in the Musée d’Orsay, not forgetting the wonderful Musée du Louvre.


Music

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Paris has its fair share of great music. There’s certainly something romantic about hearing the lively bounce of a jazz-manouche street artist as you stroll through Montmartre. Many of the bohemian cafes and wine bars in Paris double up as impromptu gig venues during the evenings, and there’s an eclectic mix of progressive styles to hear.

Although the scene is buzzing in Paris, it can’t compare to the maturity of London – possibly the world’s greatest musical city. From Tin Pan Alley to the Troubador, Camden and Abbey Road – you’ll find more musical history here than you could ever experience in a single visit. Unfortunately for Paris, London wins the music category hands-down.


Nightlife

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This is another tough choice. The nightlife in London is well-established with some of the world’s top clubs. Fabric, XOYO, Ministry of Sound, Cargo, and Studio 338 all provide some of the most progressive music and dance scenes the world over. Paris is known for having a slightly over-pretentious scene. However, the big-name clubs in the city have unparalleled pedigree. La Locomotive, Batofar, Chez Castel and Le Montana all provide extraordinary experiences (if you can get through the door).

Although it’s a close draw, we’re going to have to give the prize to London for nightlife. Paris is magnificent, but it’s nose-in-the-air door policies and relatively early curfews give London the edge.


Beauty

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It depends. Comparing the central areas of both cities, the most beautiful parts of Paris are more beautiful than the most beautiful parts of London. However, the ugly parts of Paris are also wayyyyy more ugly than the ugly parts of London. So, while Paris has high highs and low lows, London is more “consistent” in its beauty.


Weather

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Exactly the same, believe it or not. Look at the figures if you don’t believe me. London has an undeservedly bad reputation in this area but looking at actual facts, Paris has slightly warmer summers but also slightly colder winters and they have exactly the same number of sun days and days of precipitation per year.


The London Eye vs la Tour Eiffel

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Tourists flock to these cities day in, day out to see some of the world’s most famous landmarks and if you’re lucky enough to live in London or Paris then these will be right on your doorstep. The river Thames overlooks many of London’s top landmarks including Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. In comparison, your stroll along the Seine will give you a sight of Notre Dame and you can see the Eiffel Tower sparkle at night


Public Transportation

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Speaking of the Metro, It might have some ridiculously long station names – “Ecole Vétérinaire de Maisons-Alfort” is a favourite – but the Paris metro is fast, reliable and makes for a painless morning commute, unlike the Tube with its frequent breakdowns and disruptions. Trains roll in and out of Metro stations every 2-4 minutes and at weekends it conveniently runs until 2am. What’s more, a monthly ticket will only set you back 60€.


All in all, it’s a very close call between the two cities. If I had to give you an outright winner? Well, I will always be a Londoner. For me, it’s the king of cities. But if I’d never visited Paris then I’d be missing out on a tonne of beautiful experiences too. Both are cities that you simply have to visit at least once in your lifetime. Which Hopefully I will in the near future

How to Spot an American Tourist

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Although I will admit that there are times where it is so easy to spot a tourist thats not American in the crowd while traveling, But I wonder how easy it is to spot us Americans in the crowd when we travel overseas.


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You hear us before you see us. I don’t think we have to be overseas to be loud. I have a feeling that Americans like to show that they are Americans so they speak English loudlier than normal so people can spot them. Native English-speakers have that fuffly kinda bitchy accent


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Un-naturally white, perfectly straight-toothed smiles have “U.S.A.” written all over them. The American dental experience is far superior to most first-world countries. What’s more, we love our white, straight-toothed smiles, and we flash ’em all around like the AmEx cards few non-American vendors accept. Beware that in most cultures, smiles are a rare invitation to chat, especially from women.


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Ask a bunch of foreigners how to spot an American abroad, and this is the one that comes up the most often. In fact, our outgoing personalities are often startling to more reserved types like Germans and Brits. An American tourist is very outgoing and friendly; he/she would talk to people who are complete strangers, just for the sake of having smalltalk for a while.


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Fanny means something sooo entirely different in British English, so beware with using that word. Secondly, fanny packs? Really? They don’t even look good in the United States, let alone abroad. They are a clear invitation for thieves, and they’ve got ‘tourist’ written all over them. Leave this fashion faux pas at the bottom of the closet where it belongs. Just FYI I own a fanny pack and LOVE it.


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Others around the world mostly wear darker-colored socks. In fact, in Paris, people actually find white socks offensive. Wearing socks with sandals is generally acknowledged as a no-go anywhere, so don’t do that. Wearing white socks, especially if pulled up, is primarily associated with Americans. Europeans tend to wear darker colored socks that match their trousers.


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As a proud tipper in America, I still have an internal struggle with this one every time I’m in a restaurant. (You mean I shouldn’t tip at least 15%?) Although tipping is less prevalent in Europe, it varies from country to country. One rule of thumb is to always make sure you look up the tipping etiquette for the country you’re visiting. If service isn’t included in the bill, a 5-10% tip is the standard amount for restaurant service. Anything more than that is unnecessary.


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It is an unfortunate truth that American students have earned a reputation abroad for excessive drinking. Not only is this dangerous because your decision making skills are impaired, but it makes it more known that you are foreign. Keep in mind that if you wouldn’t do something at home, why on earth would you do it abroad. Just because drinking is legal, and alcohol is easily accessible doesn’t mean you need to drink as much of it as possible every night. Know your limits is you choose to partake.


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English is indeed widely spoken all over the world, but not making any effort will just make everyone hate you. “If at all possible, at least say a greeting in the other person’s language, and then say, ‘Do you speak English?’ right after that, Yes, it’s likely that a lot of people, especially in touristy spots, will speak English, but the presumption that they do is really obnoxious. No need to bust out an entire language dictionary either. “If nothing else, learn how to say hello, thank you, and please


 

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Another easy way to spot an American abroad? Proudly displaying your favorite university/sports tee. Nothing screams “USA” more than a Miami Dolphins t-shirt. Skip the logo and opt for a sleek, monochrome tee instead.

The baseball cap is the classic American fashion piece. It is not so commonly worn in other countries as an everyday item. If it is to shade your eyes sunglasses are a more popular solution abroad.


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In the US people are always on the run, and grabbing a quick lunch is normal. It is not out of the ordinary to eat whilst walking down the street. However, in other countries, this is not common at all and goes against etiquette in some places.


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We’re looking at you, backpackers traipsing past the  the Duomo, or through Times Square. Seriously, unless you’re on a hiking trail or deep in the woods, you probably don’t need all of whatever it is that you’re carrying. For day excursions, I suggest a canvas tote or a messenger bag which can be worn across your body.  These are pretty much universal and also inexpensive, and you won’t leave your zippered pockets vulnerable, as you would with a backpack.  If you don’t have a place to drop your bulky luggage, do some research at airports, bus depots, train stations, major tourist attractions, and even a few local hotels. Many of these spots will be able to hold your big bag for a small fee. And trust me, you’ll enjoy your destination much more if you go there unencumbered.


These are just a few examples of how, us American look when we go overseas. It’s funny even when you see people from out of town in america. Let me know in the comments if you are one of these tourist. 

Different types of travelers

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I recently took a quiz to see what type of traveler I’m and I got “YOU ARE A RELAXATION TRAVELER!”

And I must agree there’s nothing better than sitting by the beautiful pool with a pina colada and a good book. I never sleep in on vacation, weird I know but I’m the type of person that by 9:00 am the day is half over and I’m up by 7 am on every vacation I go on. Vacations takes you away from the busy lifestyle of the everyday and gives you that special time just to unwind. Unhurried dinners, and strolling on the beach are your idea of a perfect week away.

I’ve traveled with so many different travelers, and they are basically a diverse breed and different travellers approach the same destination in varied ways. 

Let’s explore some of the (many) different types of travelers and leave a comment on which one you fall under. 


The Sexplorer

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Ohhh I know this type..Not me, In college my friend went on vacation and pretty much slept her way across Europe.

The Sex Addicts or as I call them The Sexplorer are just looking to score. They eye down everything that walks and speaks to no one of the same-sex because they see them as competition.

These types of travelers can usually be found combing the beach by day, going to the hottest clubs at night, and rooting through their suitcase of designer clothing by morning for the right look to take another shot at nailing that Itailan chick they met on Long Beach. 

These are not bad people, and it’s certainly not just men either. Like I said before my friend is a girl and she did this in college. She was not a bad person At the time, she was just really, really horny and traveling to a new country allowed her to have sex without anyone back home knowing about it. (It’s ok I use er as an example…we are not longer friends) 

If  this type of travel is your style, then go for it, but please be safe. 


The Budget Traveler

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a budget traveler is a traveler who is budget-conscious. I fall into this catagory, and I think most people do. I’m not as extreme through.Most people who travel have some sort of monetary restrictions but the budgeters? These are the people who won’t spare a cent. I love a free walking tours but I’m not into haggling for a deal. Most budget savy people will stay in economy accommodations  eat cheap meals, and fly during off-peak seasons

I think being this type of traveler takes really strong willpower, the budgeter is happy to turn down dessert (NEVER!) and I always find coupons if I’m going to the mall on vacation. 


The Techie

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I think we all fall into this catagory. Travelers exploring new destinations just because to satisfy their craving for taking photos with new HD 2000 Camera or using new travel tech gears. There is no particular destination as they like all places that look good in the new tech gear. Socia media falls into this catagory as well. You take a photo and edit the shit out of it for follows, they bad thing is that you are not living in the moment and get the full experience. 

You might take a lot of selfie’s from different angles with different attires. This type of traveler has to make sure they look perfect for pictures. They are more about making travelling portfolio. Their main motto is to bombard their Facebook , Twitter and Instagram. Wonder if they enjoy travelling or not. I would say not. 

 


The Foodie

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What is a Foodie???“Foodie Traveler: a person with an extreme interest in food that travels just to experience new food.”

I’m not really a foodie traveler. I like food, but I’m not as adventourous as I would like. 

You know you’re a foodie-traveller when –You Pick Your Travel Destinations Based on the Local Cuisine

So you are a  globetrotter and like to dip into local food? Does that make you a Foodie-Traveler? Nowadays, it seems that we can find any type of food anywhere in our home countries. When it comes to travelling, I mostly  globetrot for for the best pizza. So how do you know when you’re a foodie-traveller? You know you’re a foodie-traveller when…Every photo on your phone is…well, food! I guess I’m not one then. Who cares about landmarks and street performers. To a foodie-traveller, a beautifully presented plate of  locally prepared food or dessert is far more captivating than paintings in museums or scenic landscapes. There’s a thrill in spending the first two minutes snapping away with your phone or camera rather than taking pictures of renowned statues. By the end of your trip, sifting through albums of food photos is more prideful than any souvenirs you felt obligated to purchase. I sometimes feel like this, even though my camera roll isn’t filled with food. 

I’m not an experimentalist. Really, most food scares you. Chicken feet, blood sausages, seafood that don’t appear to exist in encyclopedias are a no no.You want to try everything and experiment with cuisines that are foreign to you. You’re a foodie-traveller.


The Partier

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These are the travelers who prefer travelling just for fun and parties. Their favourite destinations are the bars and clubs. This, I think is the same as the sexplorer. They are looking to party and get laid. Their favorite places to go are Goa, Ibiza, Amsterdam and Las Vegas. It can be like a “The Hangover” situation you can lose days, even weeks, of your travel to the thrill of boozing and checking out the different dive bars and clubs with individuals who are like-minded. 

11:00PM — 4:30AM is prime time for party animals, and when you see them, they’re either wasted, hungover, asking for charity because “they lost their wallet skinny-dipping”, or barging into your hostel room at the most ungodly of hours, turning on the lights and then trying to strike up a conversation about the hot girls/guys at the bar that they didn’t bring home, but unlike the sexplorer they will bring someone home. 

They might sound like they’re a disaster to be around, but Party Animals are super fun too. I like a good party but I don’t go crazy like some people I know. Plus I’m not in my 20s anymore. The Partier does bring energy to the vacation and they bring people together, sometimes sucking other poor sons of bitches into their whirlpool of drunkenness, all the while medicating their hangover with yet more alcohol, and yes I have been sucked in before…Never again


The Planner

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I’m this type of traveler. I need things to be planned out and on time. i don’t go to the extreme in creating Google Doc spreadsheets (which sound like a good idea) but I have seen people so it. I’m on that line of almost having things planned out to the hour.

Some people are just built this way. I salute the planner. The last vacation I went on, my aunt said that we will feel things out and go with the flow….meaning that nothing was planned and I almost had a panic attack. 

Us as planners, always get the very most out of our trip, we take some of the best photos and do the most research, and we are almost always more knowledgeable than most people going into any excursion. Now let me be clear, I only do this if I’m going to a city setting, on the beach is a different situation. I’m more relaxed. In the city, I normally have a checklist and planned itinerary down to every tiny detail 


The Group

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I love a good group. They are typically in their early 20’s to early 30’s, who like to travel in groups of their friends or with family,

The groups single mode of enjoyment depends upon their group and if found alone, they are best board persons of the world. However for me, the idea of solo travelling is not utterly bullshit, but ideal.This group of travellers make the most of every holiday as they’re usually someone in the group to goad the others into enjoying a diverse range of experiences on their travels.


The Fittness Freak

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Well There is not much to say about this type, other than the hotel they are staying at MUST have a gym or there needs to be a gym close by.  They watch what they eat and often prevent you from eating all the fun food while on vacation. Sometimes this can be annoying. I knew several people who are like this. If that’s your thing, go for it.


The Solo Traverler

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These crazy nuts always thrive to find themselves. Their main goal is peace, harmony, nature and they ponder the deepest philosophies of life. They usually travel alone and they ignore any company. They usually travel long and prefer walking to known places.


The No-expense Traveler

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You might have paid your dues in holidays gone by, suffering through limited legroom and dodgy hostels. Or perhaps you’re just adjusted to the finer things in life. The high-flyer is all about indulgent travel. You’re not afraid to shell out extra dollars on five star hotels rooms, extravagant dinners and first class flights. You’re legitimately about YOLO-ing and air-conditioning is non-negotiable.

A term used to describe this traveler with more disposable income is a flashpackers, which they tend to carry more electronics, stay in decent accommodations, and take taxis, though they share some characteristics of regular backpackers such as the intrigue for the local culture and lifestyle, longer travel length, and perhaps an open-ended itinerary.


The Thrill Seekers

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They always give an extra inch to their travelling. They travel to the tallest mountain; they jump from highest bungee jumping, sky dive from the highest altitude and so on. You will find these crazy people at every good enough crazy places. These chunks are as interesting as wild adventure.

Adrenaline junkies and dare devils. Travel far and wide to find the world’s highest bungee jump, the world’s tallest mountain (which they then proceed to climb) and pretty much anything extreme and perhaps previously unheard off. You will not find these people on a beach in St Barths or checking out the infinity pool at the hotel.

This type of traveler is what you see all over Instagram, but they’re not as common as you think. Believe it or not, most people who travel are simply tourists, and partake in organized events, hit the popular spots and love doing so. Nothing wrong with that.

I prefer to not end up in the hospital , so no I’m not a thrill seeker. The only downside to this traveler is that they need to find like-minded individuals to join them in their pursuits, and often they have to work hard to pull people out of their comfort-zone and take them off the beaten track. If a Thrill Seeker approaches you with a proposition while traveling . . .

TAKE IT! or Not…Its up to you


So these are just a few of the types of travelers you might come across or maybe you are one….Let me know in the comments which one you are or a traveler that I didn’t mention. 

Ways To Plan A Trip

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Planning a trip can be a daunting task. Thinking about anything more than which destination you want to travel to takes a bit more time. I have some tips and tricks for even the most unversed of traveler. The easy part is saving up and planning, the tough part is deciding where to go and what to spend your money on once you get there. None of this needs to be stressful and you’ll learn quickly that with a few tricks of the trade, you’ll be able to save some money in the process, too.

As long as you have an open mind and a passion for travel despite where it is, you’ll gain something from this post. Some of these tips might sound familiar while others could open up a whole new world of adventure for you.


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As a general rule when you are planning for a trip, there are a few main areas you need to consider:

  • Pick Destination
  • Length
  • Cost/Money
  • Save
  • Accommodation/Attractions/Activities
  • Get Travel Insurance/Visa
  • Packing
  • Safety
  • Have Fun

Pick out a destination

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What is your mood for the vacation? A serene calm place or a bustling place, an adventurous camp or a romantic holiday. First start by deciding where you want to go.  Investigate some interesting places, the internet is great for this.  You can look at national park sites, city tourist sites, and even Wikipedia are good sources.


Length

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Once you have a destination in mind, it’s time to decide how long you can go there for. This means if you’re in full time employment, checking with your boss about time off. If you work for yourself, figure out how long you can stay away without it affecting your work.


Cost/Money

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Before fully committing to the Vacation, you need to make sure you can afford to stay in the country of your choice for the period of time you’ve chosen. If you aren’t ok with staying in a shared hostel then research hotel prices, cost of a self-catering apartment, restaurant prices, tourist attractions and more. All of this will help you plan the best holiday possible.


Save

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Once you know how much your trip is going to cost you, it’s time to start saving. The sooner you start this process the more money you’ll have. Try to cut back on frivolous daily spending, such as bottled water, the Starbucks large coffee you order on your way to work every day and learn how to cook so you can cut down on expensive dinners out every other day. A small daily saving can, over the course of 6 months or so, pay for a lot (and sometimes, all, of your trip).


Accommodation, Attractions & Activities

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The 3 A’s 

Accommodation varies on who i am travelling and what my budget is. For example if i am going in a hotel then Booking.com: The largest selection of hotels, homes, and vacation rentals is the place to go to find the best price on a website. But if you’re on a budget, look at hostels and airbnbs or even couchsurfing.Do a thorough research for your desired hotel, check their ratings, reviews, photographs, and book either through telephone or online.

Start making a rough list of places you want to go to and things you want to see. Check things like timings and cost of entry to sites for foreigners, which in some countries are higher than cost for locals. This is even true for the U.S. I went to Orlando last year and getting into Universal is higher for peolpe coming from out of town (Which that was my first and last time going to Universal). 


Get insurance

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Travel insurance should be a non-negotiable addition to your holiday itinerary and will protect you when a flight is canceled, you’re robbed or you break your leg while hiking.


Visa and Vaccination

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A lot of people don’t realise this but a lot of places in the world require visa and vaccination before the trip so research is important.

Possibly one of the most important parts to consider before going on a trip is to find out if you need a visa to enter your country of choice. Visas are an entire other task which can require different documents that you need to submit. Some visas even require a face-to-face interview while others are as easy as getting the visa at the airport.


Packing

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The most important thing to remember when packing is you need to pack appropriately for the weather and culture of your destination. For example do not pack ski jackets when travelling to Singapore.

A short checklist of all the items you need is also highly recommended. I usually like to start about 2 weeks ahead of time so I can wash the things I need, get any medication I might need, make sure everything fits in my bags, etc.  I usually try to do carry on only, so I bring clothes that mix and match and can be washed along the way.  You can check your airline for the size bag that is allowed for carry on.  They usually allow two items for carry on, a small suitcase and a purse, backpack, laptop case, small bag, etc.  Make sure you check the airline regulations for toiletries.  In the US you are allowed a quart sized bag filled with liquid, gel or paste toiletries that are in containers no larger than 3 ounces each.  Also, make sure you don’t take anything sharp or pointy on board the plane, it will be confiscated at security. 


Have Fun!!!!!

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Don’t overthink it once you land, make friends but stay alert, explore, stay away from social media and concentrate on having fun.

48 Hours in Dublin

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If you’re planning a weekend in Dublin? Good choice! Having grown up in Dublin I congratulate you for having impeccable travel tastes! As with any major city, Dublin has no shortage of cool things to do and see.

If you’re not a morning person there are plenty of things to do in Dublin at night. And the craic. Definitely do not forget about the craic! If you don’t know what that means then you might want to check out my guide to Irish phrases.

When you only have 48 hours in Dublin you might feel a bit overwhelmed about where to begin and how to really make the most of your time to experience the best that the city has to offer. Never fear.  I’m here to help you out. 

It’s a real gem when it comes to maximizing your time and planning your trip. Each part of the city is handily dealt with in separate sections. It’s easy to see at a glance which attractions are close to each other, how to get to them, and where to find great food without going out of your way. So you can get the most out of your 3 days in Dublin. Navigating and finding your way around has never been easier. Let’s get planning your Dublin weekend.

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Getting to Dublin

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Dublin is well connected to the UK with airlines including Ryanair Aer Lingus CityJet , Flybe and BA. There are also ferries to Dublin and the nearby port of Dun Laoghaire.

Dublin airport is 12km north of the centre. There is no rail link but the 24-hour Aircoach shuttle provides a handy alternative running every 10 minutes at peak times with stops throughout the city; €7 one-way, €6 if booked online. Dublin Bus also operates the 747 Airlink to the Central Bus Station (1); €6 one-way. A taxi will cost about €25 one-way.


When to go 

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The weather is famously changeable in Ireland, including in Dublin. In general terms, May, June and September tend to be the sunniest months, while July and August can be a washout – and crowded to boot. Winter-time Dublin, with its contrast between chilly streets and a cosy, indoor culture, can be charmingly atmospheric.

 


Where to Stay

For a budget option, the award-winning Ariel House impresses with its relaxed and elegant charm. Two beautifully conserved red-brick Victorian properties enclose a mature garden and the comfortable sofas and grand piano (which guests are free to use) in the gracious drawing room make it feel cosy.

If extravagant décor and being really close to Dublin’s city centre are top of your priority list when it comes to accommodation then Trinity City Hotel is probably right up your street.  Set behind Trinity College, Trinity City is a 4 star hotel offering guests a convenient, comfortable base to explore the city from.  And if you really can’t help making your friends jealous by posting your photos to Facebook, the hotel also provides free wi-fi.


Where to Eat

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With about two days in Dublin you’ll have plenty of time to feast on some Dublin delicacies. If you’re looking for some traditional Irish fare to sink your teeth into on your weekend in Dublin, you can’t go wrong with Irish stew. Another one-pot dish to try is coddle.

Bacon and cabbage, as unappetizing as it may sound, is also really tasty. Grab a breakfast roll in the morning, or sit down for a full breakfast of sausage, bacon, eggs and other goodies. 

Speaking of goodies, try goody if you’re craving something sweet. Or wrap your mouth around the Dublin favorite of gur cake. And, you have to try soda bread when in Dublin!

If Texan BBQs and hipster hangouts are your thing head to Bison Bar and BBQ right next to the river Liffey on Wellington Quay.  That said, there’s nothing pretentious about this place; it’s got a relaxed atmosphere, the staff are friendly and the food’s so good they bring a roll of kitchen paper to your table should you get a little messy (and you probably will).  Try the pulled pork with fries and home made coleslaw or the 14 hour slow roast Irish beef brisket beef.  But be quick: when the food’s gone the food’s gone!

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Whats the best place for good atmosphere? Try Alliance Francaise. Always packed, good value and absolutely always delicieux is the café where you can treat yourself to reasonable coffee and croissant deals, as well as good value main meals. The relaxed atmosphere belies the seriously good food they offer.

If you are looking for fuel for a day of traipsing around the sights, look no further than Mama’s Revenge Burrito Hut, where for €5 students can get a gut-busting, half-kilo of burrito which tastes as good as the colourfully decorated shop-front looks.


What to Do

Trinity College

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A gorgeous, prestigious campus right in the heart of the city. It was founded in 1592 and is Ireland’s oldest university. Also a library housing 200,000 books in magnificent oak bookcases, Trinity College is still a functioning university in the heart of Dublin city and attracts thousands of visitors a year.

A campus tour, which lasts around 35 minutes, is a brilliant way to learn more about the history of the college and its buildings, and includes an introduction to the Books of Kells and the library (where you can spend as much time as you like).

Guinness Storehouse

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Home of the famous Irish “Black Gold”, learn about Guinness’s history, see how it’s made, and enjoy a pint from the panoramic bar. This is a massive tourist trap of course, so be prepared for crowds. And a rather extortionate entrance fee. It’s mainly worth it for all the old Guinness ads and the view from the Gravity Bar at the top of the Storehouse. Have always wanted to learn how to pour the perfect pint of Guinness? You can also be taught the art of Guinness pouring.

Christ Church Cathedral

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If you experience Dublinia, the exit from the gift shop leads you directly into Christ Church Cathedral. Founded in 1028, this breathtaking cathedral of the United Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough is one of the most sought after attractions throughout the Irish nation

Irish Museum of Modern Art

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Home to Ireland’s national collection of modern and contemporary art, the gallery includes works by Goya, Rembrandt and more. It also hosts a diverse range of exhibitions featuring both Irish and international artists.


Where to Drink

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You can’t go to Dublin and not have a refreshment. I mean you could, but where’s the fun in that? 

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Formerly St Mary’s Church, a 17th Century place of worship closed in 1964, The Church is now a bar, cafe, and restaurant with a stunning, unique interior including a stained glass window and a Renatus Harris organ.  This place has a cosy atmosphere, despite its size, and is the perfect place for a couple of casual drinks.

If coffee is more your speed, Java Republic is a new cafe by an Irish-owned artisan roasted coffee company by the same name. The stylish minimalist cafe on Molesworth Street is a must for coffee lovers.

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This is just a little taste of what you can do in Dublin for 48 hours, I hope you have a good time in Dublin and go to some of the places I mentioned

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World’s Underrated Beaches

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Whether you love the ocean or prefer to spend your beach days at the lake, there are plenty of beaches and beach towns to explore across america and the world. While some have gotten incredibly popular, others remain underrated, especially the most affordable ones.


Anna Maria Island-Florida

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This perfect picture postcard kind of place moves at a very slow pace. Often know as Florida’s best kept secret, Anna Maria Island sits at the southern tip of Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico and is perched north of Longboat Key.   Leave the car at home and travel the island by trolley bus. 

The beaches of Anna Maria Island are some of the best on the Gulf Coast. Not for just the soft sugar white sands and the rich turquoise blue water but the most incredible sunsets that this part of the world is famous for.


Honokalani Beach- Maui, Hawaii

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I’m not going to lie, I was a little frightened when I first seen this. Tucked away on a deserted stretch of Maui’s lush Waianapanapa State Park, Honokalani Beach commands awe from those lucky enough to chance upon it. The beach and other volcanic formations along the coast were created by waves crashing over hot lava flowing from the volcano Haleakala.


Hatenohama Beach Kumejima, Japan

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Hatenohama Beach, the 11km long coral sand cay is in Kume Island, Okinawa, Japan.Accessible only through a glass-bottom boat tour, the 7 km long (4.3 mi) stretch of sand makes this beach a popular outing spot, where you can both swim and snorkel. See some of the exquisite shells and tropical fish, or take snorkeling and diving lessons with expert instructors. A huge area of pristine shallow water sheltered by coral reefs and funky rock formations offers excellent diving opportunities, and you’ll see local fishermen looking for a catch further out from the shore


Koh Kradan Beach- Thailand

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Thailand is full of gorgeous beaches, but hordes of screeching tourists tend to undercut some of their allure, but not to worry with Koh Kradan. 

Koh Kradan Beach is located just off the coast of Trang and is a little slice of paradise. The water is so clear that often, you can just sit by the shore and watch fish swim about. The white sandy beach is perfect for swimming when it’s high tide and low tide gives you the chance to walk endlessly due to the long sandbar that stretches along the island.


Second Beach- Washington

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The three breathtaking beaches on Olympic Coast of Washington in the USA offer breathtaking sights. It is a great destination for hikers with a thick forest cover. Beautiful wildlife, mesmerizing shorelines, and canopied forests will simply leave you awe-struck. On your approach to sea, you can long hear the faint sound of crashing waves and breeze flapping your face.


Spartines Beach Alonissos- Greece

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Alonissos Beaches  are amongst the clearest and cleanest beaches in the world, making this area a very safe and satisfying island for swimming. The beaches are mainly pebbles/rocks with a few exceptions! Below are the main beaches on the island. There are many smaller ones that are not as easy to get to but equally beautiful. Making the effort to go to these remote beaches you will find you may be the only ones there… even in the middle of August! Also, it’s popular with nudists…So just beware. 😉


Islamorada- Florida

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Just an hour-and-a-half south of bustling Miami, Islamorada feels like an entirely different universe. The so-called “village of islands” is home to countless beaches at the edges of its scant seven square miles, most of them without official names and conspicuously absent of sunscreen-slicked sunbathers. The waters are so shallow, gentle, warm and clear that wading in feels like a dip in the world’s largest bathtub.


Lord Howe Island- Australia

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Lord Howe Island is but a tiny sliver of earth, the remains of a seven-million-year-old volcano adrift on the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand. A close-kept secret among Sydney cognoscenti, this tiny Pacific Ocean island—where tourists are capped at 400, streetlights are a rarity, and most people get around on bicycles—is an easy two-hour flight from the city. Born from a volcanic eruption 7 million years ago. 

Lord Howe Island,  is one of the most naturally beautiful islands in the world with its long Fiji-blue lagoon protected by the world’s most southerly coral reef and two mountains that wouldn’t look out of place in Tahiti. It’s a barefoot kind of place, a place to get back to simple pleasures, and perfect for adventure travellers, nature-lovers, couples and young families. 


Capo Sant’Andrea, Elba

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Capo Sant’Andrea is a small island inside the island of Elba, where Napoleon was exiled to in Tuscany, Italy. This part of the island is the most beautiful and naturally preserved based on the union between the sea and the mountains.

Capo Sant’Andrea is a small stretch of white sandy beach bordering crystal clear waters with an abundance of marine life and spectacular climbable cliffs. Because of its size, it can easily go unnoticed, but it remains a very beautiful and relaxing beach.


Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam

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Phu Quoc is a delightful spot with an unfortunate name. While some say “faux cock” (which reminds me of a fake rooster, or worse) and others attempt a potty-mouthed “poo wok”, the correct pronunciation of this Vietnamese island, which sits off the coast of Cambodia, is “foo kwuk”

The largest island in the Gulf of Thailand, Phu Quoc is nearer to Cambodia than mainland Vietnam. As a result, there is a sizable military force in this still underdeveloped tourist destination of just 103,000 residents, known for uncluttered beaches and the country’s best fish sauce—a key Vietnamese ingredient.Phu Quoc Island boasts idyllic beaches, romantic sunsets, evergreen forests, and a serene atmosphere, making it an ideal holiday destination for travellers looking to escape bustling city life


So when you are looking to book your summer vacation, to to visit these beautiful beaches. 

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