Why Melbourne Is An Unrivaled City For Event Tourism

You don’t really need a reason to travel to Australia. For reasons that are just about innumerable, it’s high on a lot of people’s lists, and it’s a country you’ll never forget having had the opportunity to visit. If you are the type to look for specific reasons to travel, however, or at least specific times to do it, Australia – and Melbourne in particular – might become all the more interesting.

This is because Melbourne happens to be one of the best cities in the world for fun and festive events. Any of these events can give you a perfect reason to visit, and a nice excuse to pack up your bags and head to Australia. We couldn’t possibly touch on all of them here, but these are some of the prominent examples you’ll want to keep in mind.

Australian Open

The Australian Open is the first “Grand Slam” tournament for professional tennis, and really signifies the beginning of the annual season to most fans. You can find pros and cons for each of the four Grand Slams around the world (the others being in Paris, London, and New York), but it’s fairly common to see comments suggesting the Aussie Open in Melbourne is the most enjoyable. Granted, it tends to be exceptionally hot when this event is held in late January, but it’s still a fun-filled two-week event and a chance to see world-class tennis.

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Australian Grand Prix

Formula 1 racing travels all over the world and involves a lot of great cities and locations. And sometimes those locations change from one year to the next, so that the calendar is rarely repeated. But the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne is one of the fastest growing races on the circuit, thanks in part to Melbourne’s sports-loving culture. If you’re interested at all in high-speed racing, or if you’re just looking for another terrific sporting event to take in, put it on the list!

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Melbourne BeerFest

Held in the spring, Melbourne BeerFest is one of several different food and drink festivals you could pick from throughout the year. Though as its name would imply, it’s certainly one of the signature ones, so to speak. Picture a major outdoor gathering in a pretty spot with craft beer and food available for you to consume to your pleasure, and you’ve pretty much nailed it. There are similar festivals all over the world, but it’s tough to beat the Melbourne setting for it.

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White Night

White Night festivals happen around the world, and while they vary from place to place the general atmosphere is that of a massive nighttime festival complete with brightly lit attractions and whatever entertainment comes out to play. In Melbourne this is a major event, held in February and bringing out a dazzling number of floats, light shows, and other attractions. It truly is a magical carnival of sorts, and a lovely excuse to spend a whole night out in Melbourne.

White Night 2013

Moomba Festival

Moomba is a little bit difficult to describe, but has been called Australia’s largest free community festival – which is to say it’s sort of a festival for festivity’s sake. It typically takes place on Labour Day weekend, and brings millions of revelers out to the banks of the Yarra River. The celebrations consist of fireworks, parades, watersports in the river, and even an event that sees people diving into said river for charity.

Melbourne Cup

Getting back to another of Melbourne’s celebrated sporting occasions, the Melbourne Cup horse races are perhaps as good as it gets. The event takes place on the first Tuesday of November, which is designated as a national holiday thanks to all of the attention that surrounds the races. The Melbourne Cup grounds are packed with a fun and festive version of the traditional pomp and circumstance that are attached to major horse racing events, and the action on the tracks is always compelling.

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Earthcore

Earthcore is another event that’s a little bit difficult to describe, but could be unforgettable to experience. Ostensibly a music festival, it basically encompasses all aspects of the arts, and is held for about a week in late November. There isn’t a precise location for the bulk of Earthcore. Rather, the festival takes place at various outdoor venues in and around Melbourne, and even in the Victorian woods.

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How to uncover the culture of Africa: 7 tips

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Traveling to another country isn’t all about spending hours lying in the sun and relaxing; it also offers up the chance to learn about a new culture. Africa is no exception. Thankfully, I have put together seven tips that will help you to uncover the culture of Africa on your next journey.

1. Head out on safari

When thinking about Africa, it can be easy to imagine all the animals living out there in the desert planes. So why not take a chance to experience them for yourself? Many companies offer up package deals that take the stress and worry out of organizing the tour yourself, and you could even learn some local tips and tricks from your local guide. After all, it’s their job to know all about the local area.

2. Take things slowly

It can be easy to get carried away when visiting another country, especially when trying to take in all that is on offer in Africa. Unfortunately, the faster you move, the more you could miss. Rather than scrambling around to see as much as you can before you go home, be sure to take the time to stop and look around, what are the locals doing? How does the wildlife sound? How does the sun feel on your skin? It’s the smaller things that will give you a better understanding of the culture of Africa.

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3. Visit the local bazaars

Over the years, I have been lucky enough to delve headfirst into many markets all around the world. Although many regions have their own take on the trade, Africa has perfected bazaars thanks to the variety of bargains on offer. The Khan-El-Khalili Bazaar in Egypt is one of the many I have got to browse through over the years, and these offer up the perfect way to chat with the locals and see life through their eyes.

4. Talk to the local residents

What better way to learn about the local area than by talking to the people that live there? Nearly everywhere I have been, there has been someone willing to offer up a secret vacation spot or snippet of information about the area that you would never learn unless you lived there. If you’re confused about how something works, be sure to ask. If you want to learn more about the history of the culture, get stuck in with some questions. You might even make some lifelong friends along the way.

5. Get on public transport

If you want to take a step deeper into uncovering the culture of Africa, then be sure to take a ride on their public transport. There are many variations of public transportation in Africa, with mini buses being one of the most popular. However, it might be best to opt for a shared taxi if you want a safer ride on your journey. The drivers of these vehicles tend to take things a little slower than their minibus rivals but will still get you there on time.

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6. Get your fork ready

Did you know that every country in Africa has its own specialty meal? While traveling around, you might come across kitfo in Ethiopia or mandazi in Kenya, and be sure not to let these opportunities pass you by. Enjoying mouthfuls of local offerings is a brilliant way to experience life in the local area as well as giving your taste buds the treat of a lifetime.

7. Learn some phrases

Before you head off on your next journey, do you know how to say “hello” and “goodbye” in the local language? It might be a small touch – and you might find many people speak English – but learning some simple words and phrases will show the locals how you’re willing to embrace their country. Plus, they could be more likely to help you uncover the culture if you’ve already made an effort before your plane lands.

Traveling through Africa is a perfect way to uncover the culture of the continent. However, if you have even more tips on how to learn about their ways of the world then be sure to let me know in the comments.

6 Planning Tips For Your Vacation Abroad

Traveling to another country on vacation can be a wonderful experience.  Travel broadens the mind and refreshes the spirit.

Choose an interesting place to go. Rather than settling on a well-known holiday destination, think outside the box. For instance, if you want a seaside vacation, consider an exotic location like Larnaca, a 6,000-year-old seaport in Cyprus. Next, determine how much money you will need, hunt for travel deals, and work and save for the trip.

Some things that you should take care of well before your intended trip include making sure that you stock your wallet, get your passport renewed, apply for any necessary visas, and get an International Driver’s License (if you intend to rent a car). You may also want to consider whether you should get Traveler’s Insurance, if you need to get any health shots and if you have enough prescriptions meds with you.

1. Decide how you’ll stock your wallet

Although traveler’s checks used to be a go-to solution when traveling, they can be problematic if you go to a less developed country. Getting cash in the foreign currency might be a problem, too, because you might have to take a large stack of notes, which increases the risk of theft. You might be better off taking a credit card and informing the issuer which country you’ll be visiting. This way, your card won’t be denied for suspicious activity when you make purchases from a foreign country.

Additionally, you have to consider what to do if your wallet is stolen. One simple solution is to have a family member send you money. If, for instance, you live in Australia, you can ask them to sign up for a Ria Money Transfer Australia account. They can then use this service to send you the amount you need in an emergency.

2. Renew your passport and apply for any necessary visas

Make sure your passport is up-to-date, valid for 6 months after your date of return. Renew it, if it’s set to expire. Next, see whether you will need a visa and find out where to get one. Make a photocopy of everything. If your passport is ever stolen, file a police report, go to the nearest embassy or consulate and fill out a statement about the theft and apply for a new passport. Carry your photocopies with you in your carry-all.

3. Apply for an International Driver’s License

If you are planning on renting a car, then also consider getting an International Driver’s License.

4. Decide on Travel Insurance

Travel insurance can provide protection should you have a medical emergency or trip interruption. But before you apply for this, make sure that there are no travel warnings and advisories about the country you’re planning on visiting. If they are, then you may not be able to get travel insurance.

5. Find out about Vaccinations

Find out about any required vaccination shots at least six weeks before you leave. These may be necessary if you’re traveling to a country where a disease is widespread. Also, find out about any dangers associated with drinking the local water.

6. Fill your Prescriptions

Take photocopies of your prescriptions and pack them separately from your non-prescription meds. You may also have to check to see these prescription drugs are legal in the destination country. Usually, this is not a problem, but it’s best to make sure that it’s not on a confiscation of prescription drugs list.

And if you need to use a syringe, then get a letter from your doctor about why you need to inject yourself. As you go through customs, be sure to declare your syringe.

Finally, get enough medicine to last your whole trip as it might be difficult to get a prescription refill when you’re abroad.

Plan Early

By planning ahead, you’ll enjoy a safe time abroad. The earlier you take these six steps the better.  If there are any delays in getting the required paperwork, it won’t interfere with your flight plans.

How Safe Is Cozumel?

How Safe Is Cozumel?

Recently a travel advisory was issued about Cozumel. But how safe is Cozumel? Safest Place in Mexico. According to Dailene Erickson who has been a resident of the town for the past 17years, the travel advisory is not only unwarranted but taints a false and negative picture of a wonderful town.

She first arrived in the town for scuba diving in the year 1993 and immediately fell in love with the town. The culture and the scenery were some of her prime attractions. After making Cozumel her home in 2001 she has been able to work in various places and has even fortunate enough to raise her daughter.

Her view of the town

Knowing just basic Spanish when she moved to the town, she has been able to climb the ladder from a single lady looking for a job to a successful entrepreneur in Cozumel. Her previous jobs as a dive master and bartender have made her understand life in the town. This makes her opinion on town safety very reliable.

Cozumel is a hub of sporting activities. There are various sports such as windsurfing, paddle boarding, and even triathlons. The climate around the shores makes it very conducive to enjoy these games. The town has a 40mile bike track that snakes its way around the island. This is the prime spot for undertaking sporting activities such as bike riding or even hiking.

The town is rich in biodiversity. There is a lot of marine life that one gets to see. If one is lucky you even get to see an Eco-race when swimming in the cool ocean waters along the shore.

Safety. Being a person who loves running, Dalaine has been able to engage in the hobby at any time may it be day or night. Being a lady, she always takes the necessary precautions every time she hits the road. Over the years, she has however not experienced any form of insecurity.

What other people think of the town

Her love for sports has made her interact with quite a number of people who are curious about how safe it is for her to run around the town all by her self-considering she is a lady. From her experience, there is nothing to fear. If she has been able to even raise her daughter in Cozumel, there should be nothing stopping anyone else from enjoying a peaceful and fulfilling life in the town.

Get your facts right

If one relies on the news alone, you may get the wrong impression of Cozumel but in today’s world we are inundated with fake news that distorts the truth and this is being down by tourism centers trying to take business away from Cozumel by putting out fake news to say it isn’t safe when it clearly is. There are various Facebook posts that paint a very positive picture of the town. Very many tourists visit the island each year and have been able to establish how wonderful the place is not only as a tourist destination but a place to start a home.

Being the safest place in Mexico is an honor and there’s so many great resorts like this one from Royal Holiday Vacation Club the world’s best travel company according to Trip Advisor. Cozumel is an island that is worth paying a visit. There is a lot in store for you when it comes to sports and beautiful scenery. It is a safe place and you are bound to enjoy the experience.

Have the Perfect Year in California With These Seasonal Destinations

People insist that California doesn’t experience all four seasons, but that’s silly. The weather is different, but each season is beautifully represented in typical West Coast style. Visit California in spring, summer, fall, and winter to see for yourself.

Watch the Wildflowers Blossom in Spring

Head inland in the springtime, away from the coast. Later in spring, wildflowers pop up along California’s sandy coastline, but as the season gets going, the greenery struggling to bloom again craves warmer temperatures. It’s cooler near the water, even in sunny California. During March and April, springtime explodes. There’s less fog, the hotel rates are lower, and the crowds are thin.

Yosemite is one of the best places to watch the flowers return to the landscape. Head to the north of San Diego and let the Carlsbad Flower Fields steal away your breath. In Huntington Garden, camellias reign supreme. Check out Mendocino, as well. The rhododendrons in the Coast Botanical Garden will make you feel brand new.

Welcome Sea Life in Summer

Along the coast of California, marine life joins the tourists in flocking to the shores in the summertime, although many of them come from the opposite direction. Along the beaches of La Jolla, the leopard sharks are the most welcomed guests. In spite of the name, these sharks are harmless. The big, brightly colored critters are personally responsible for drawing divers, kayakers, and snorkelers to La Jolla every summer. Their visit almost always begins in June, but they tend to hang around in July and August, as well. Consider taking a swim with them this year. Dive down and say hi.

Experience the Perfect Fall in SoCal

Southern California puts on a spectacular show every autumn. Visitors never expect it because the stereotype is that California has no seasons, but residents of LA know better. The air doesn’t have the same crisp nip you experience on the East Coast, and you can still swim as you bob for apples and plan your Halloween costume, but multiple fall-friendly activities are on offer.

Just as you can in nearly any New England town, you can go apple picking around Oak Glen. You can spend an hour or two in a pumpkin patch picking out the perfect jack-o-lantern. Lose your way in a corn maze, or desperately find your way out of a haunted house. A drive through Los Angeles will even reveal breathtaking fall foliage. Keep your eyes pointed toward the mountains, or peep at the gardens throughout the city.

Spend Winter in Big Bear Lake

Believe it or not, California is home to some exceptional skiing. It’s such a hot destination that you need to make reservations well ahead of time. Check out HotelPlanner to find Big Bear Lake hotels in November, December, or January. In addition to skiing, snowboarding, and sipping cocoa at the lodge, you can play in the powder, make snowmen, and experience winter in an entirely new climate.

Have you ever thought of taking a seasonal vacation? Where would you go?

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