Shop ‘til you drop?

Shopping for souvenirs on holiday can either be a fun experience, or totally stressful; it all depends on where you’re heading, and whether you find yourself in a haggling situation or not.

Having the money to shop is often the first barrier, because you usually have to budget for food and drinks whilst you’re away. Try and save as much as possible before you head off on holiday and this will be easier to manage. A good way to try and keep cash in your pocket is to look at your travel plans and see if you can streamline them in any way. I always drive myself to the airport for this very reason, but also because it saves me stress too. Airparks offer some fantastic rates on nationwide parking, including great value Leeds Bradford Airport parking, proving you don’t have to be flying from a huge major airport to take advance of this service. See what’s on offer at your terminal.

If you manage to save yourself a bit of extra cash by the end of your holiday to head off and spend, then I always find the markets are the best place to go for unusual souvenirs. Just make sure that what you’re buying isn’t made of any animal product, which is more common in places like Sri Lanka or African countries, and only stick to buying things you’re sure are environmentally sustainable. We all have a responsibility to the planet, after all.

Haggling is often the thing that puts people off about markets, but once you’re in the swing of things, you’ll find it much less daunting. In the tourist resorts that have this kind of market, such as those in Turkey for example, you’ll find the experience loud, frenetic and colourful, but it’s actually a really good laugh too. You can’t upset anyone too much provided you’re polite and you don’t suggest a price that is wildly low. The best rule to go by is to ask how much an item is, offer something at half, and then work your way up to meet in the middle somewhere. You will more often than not come away with several bargains to take back home for your loved ones.

Try and buy something that is specific to the local area too, so if you’re talking about Turkey again, then take home some Turkish delight; if you’re heading to Greece, grab a bottle of ouzo; or if you’re lucky enough to be visiting Cuba, take home some cigars and a bottle of rum. It’s always fun to be a tourist when shopping!

Should You Start Planning a Spa Vacation?

Let’s be honest…. life can get pretty stressful. Just think about those strict deadlines at work, standstill traffic on the highway, the never-ending responsibilities at home, and well, everything in between! It’s no wonder you’re feeling frazzled, stressed, and anxious. Before you give up on relaxation altogether, take a nice deep breath. Go on! Now, take another. And one more for good measure. Feeling a little calmer? Take that feeling to a whole new level by spending your free time at the spa. Yes, a spa vacation is the perfect way for you to find your inner Zen.

Do you need a break from the daily hustle and bustle? Then it may be time to start planning a getaway of your very own. If you’re dreaming of a spa vacation, here is everything you need to know.

Why Plan a Spa Vacation?

You’re probably wondering: why do I need to plan a spa vacation? Can’t I just go somewhere nearby for a couple of hours? Going to get a massage is great…but imagine an entire vacation devoted to helping you relax and feel good! Nothing could be better. Think of it this way: plenty of people go to the spa and even make travel plans – but not everyone enjoys luxury travel. You can take your getaway to the next level by experiencing a spa vacation full of pampering and relaxation. It will allow you to forget about your troubles, re-focus your energy, and tend to your needs for a change.

What Is a Spa Vacation?

Now to answer the most basic question: what is a spa vacation and what can you expect from one? A spa vacation takes a day at the spa to a whole new level. It allows you to unwind while you get away from your day-to-day life. During your trip, you can enjoy a number of different spa treatments each and every day. You can also lay out by the pool (or ocean!) and make the most of all that gorgeous scenery. Or you can simply add on a massage or facial to a sightseeing vacation. It is totally up to you! Some people choose to take spa vacations by themselves or bring along a spouse or close friend. Think about what will make you happy before you book.

Where Can You Take a Spa Vacation?

One of the best things about going on a spa vacation has to be the versatility. It’s not just the spa treatments you’re able to select. You can also choose your location. Spa vacations may take place on an exotic island, at a resort, or in a major city. It all depends on where you want to go. Whether you’re dreaming of a white sandy beach or some breathtaking mountain views, there is always a spa vacation for you to choose from. Thank goodness for that!

 

So, should you start planning a spa vacation of your own? With relaxation in your grasp, the answer is always yes! It’s time to take care of yourself. That means getting away from all of those responsibilities – at least for a little while. Remember: you deserve it.

The Postcard of the 21st Century?

Do you know what I miss? Getting postcards in the mail. It was always kind of exciting to get a taste of somewhere exotic. Growing up, I used to collect all of the postcards I got in the mail. In fact, I think I still have them all somewhere. Believe it or not, I think I miss sending postcards just as much as I miss receiving them!

Whenever I would travel somewhere, I’d always go out and grab a handful of postcards – one for each of my loved ones. Then I’d write a short message about my trip on the back and send it off. Things are so different now! I’m more likely to send a quick text or post something silly on Facebook than scour the local shops for a postcard. It’s not quite the same, is it? That’s why I was so excited when I heard about Lettr.

Lettr is being called “the postcard of the 21st century.” It lets travellers stay in touch with their loved ones the old fashioned way – but with a modern twist. Instead of buying a postcard and sending it through snail mail, all you need is your smart phone, tablet, or a laptop. Snap a memorable picture, write a personalized message, sign, and send. Easy! And instead of taking a couple of weeks for your postcard to arrive (did you ever make it home before the postcard made it to your BFF?), your loved ones will get your postcard in just a few days. Even better? You don’t need to jot down any addresses before you leave home. You can connect Lettr to your Facebook and they’ll handle the rest. (That lets you spend more time enjoying the sights!)

Honestly? I absolutely love this idea. There is something so special about blending the immediacy of the technological age with the sentimentality of a physical postcard. It is kind of the perfect solution. I also think it’s great that each postcard can be unique and personal. For example, you can send a different card to each person in your life or send the same one to everyone. It’s totally up to you! By using your own pictures, adding your signature, and creating a customized message, you have plenty of room to get creative. Plus, it’s kind of cool that the postcard will show which city and country it was sent from.

Are you planning on taking a trip this summer? Then don’t forget to send a postcard wit Lettr. It’s a quick and easy way to let people know you care – or brag about your ridiculously awesome getaway.

Since this idea really spoke to me, I’ve got a giveaway for my lovely readers! That’s right – the first 10 people to click on this link will be able to send their first postcard free. Not one of the first 10? That’s okay! You can still send a postcard to your loved ones. All you have to do is head to Letter.co to find out more.

The Most Beautiful Places to Visit in The World

Travelling is a great way to see the world. With so many incredible places to go, choosing where you visit can be tough! If you’re ready to take in some of the most beautiful sights the world has to offer, look no further. This list is sure to get your inspired.

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The Lau Archipelago, Fiji

It almost goes without saying that Fiji is one of the most beautiful places in the world. With crystal blue water, white sand, and truly breathtaking scenery, it is no wonder Fiji starts off this list. The Lau Archipelago is a collection of Fiji islands that are located nearly 200 miles away from the mainland. That means the landscape is unspoiled by tons of tourists. Most importantly, it’s beauty is completely undeniable.

Isla Vieques, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is without question a beautiful place. Even more beautiful is Isla Vieques. This stunning island is a mere six miles off the coast. Once known as Navy territory, it is now open to tourists. The area offers lush forests and hills, white sand, and lots and lots of picture-perfect water. While it’s not a popular tourist destination yet, it may be in the near future, as more resorts are taking advantage of this beautiful spot.

Fjordlands National Park, South Island, New Zealand

Once dubbed the eighth wonder of the world by Rudyard Kipling, this area in New Zealand truly is astonishing. Movie buffs will likely recognize the area from the popular Lord of the Rings films, where it stood in for Middle Earth. This island has both snowy mountains, lush forest, and marshes. With such astounding sights, this is one travel destination you won’t want to miss.

Morzine, France

If you’re more into skiing than lying out on the beach, this next beautiful place should be right up your alley. Morzine, France, which is located in Portes du Soleil, has been described as an alpine paradise. It’s not just beautiful to look at – there are also tons of ways to keep yourself occupied. You can ski, snowboard, mountain bike, golf, or even tour around the city. The options are endless!

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Of course, Rio made the list! This city is without a doubt, one of the most beautiful – and the most talked about – places to visit. It is a diverse city that offers spectacular views (best seen from the statue of Christ at the Redeemer at Corcovado) as well as a bustling city life. Rio really does give travellers the best of both worlds.

Thornybush Game Reserve, South Africa

For a little adventure and a little beauty, there’s nothing quite like South Africa. Heading to one of the game reserves is a fantastic way to take in the landscape. It also allows you to see exotic animals in their natural habitat. The Thornybush Game Reserve offers sleeping accommodations as well as safaris during the day. There’s no better way to get up close and personal with nature.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a nature buff or if you prefer a little rest and relaxation by the pool. The world is full of beautiful places to see and experience. This list is just the beginning!

The Best Asian Casinos

The world features so many different casinos that it can be hard to select a travel destination. In recent years, Asia has become well known for providing excellent casino gambling especially Macau. The Venetian Macau is the largest casino in Macau. Its gambling floor alone is over 500,000 square feet. With all this space, you can be sure the Venetian Macau offers an extensive variety of casino games. Table games feature some popular favourites and number over 800. Slot machines are also numerous with over 3500. These would include three and five reels slots as well as other favourites such as progressive slot machines.

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While many casinos are found in places like Macau, one unexpected Asian country to find gambling is South Korea. As is the case with some countries, citizens of South Korea are not permitted to gamble in the casinos. Therefore, don’t expect to meet some natives of the region when gambling. There is one exception, the Kangwon Casino. This is one that locals can frequent so it you wish to meet up with locals, visit here. They have numerous gaming options include approximately 1000 slot machines and 100 gaming tables.

Popular casino games include roulette, blackjack and baccarat. Another popular game is big wheel which is a favourite in Asia but not played in other parts of the world. Somewhat similar to roulette, players make wagers on the results before the wheel is spun.

Singapore is home to some exciting casinos including the Resorts World Sentosa. The casino itself offers over 2400 slot machine games as well as over 500 table games. With online casinos such as Jackpot City offering a huge amount of games such as JackpotCity Avalon II slots, such a high choice is imperative nowadays. With such a selection, visitors to this casino can easily find a game of interest. Also, when taking a break from gambling there are many other fun-filled activities to enjoy. For instance, Universal Studios has their first Asian park on the premises. Additionally, there is a Marine Life Park which has a large oceanarium with breath-taking ocean life to view.