Five Popular Music Festivals in Europe

We all know the popularity of Europe as a continent. The romantic cities, the beautiful beaches and delicious cuisine; but one thing that can really set Europe apart is the quality of its music festivals. As it’s such a diverse continent, you can be sure that this is reflected in some of its biggest festivals. Have a look at some of the most popular in Europe, get your festival gear packed and your foreign currency arranged.

Benicassim Festival
Image by HairTransplantPakistan (http://www.flickr.com/photos/yourticketmarket/)

The Festival Internacional de Benicàssim, Spain

If you’re a serious music lover you’ve probably heard of this festival. Benicàssim is a small town located between Barcelona and Valencia and every year hosts one of the best festivals anywhere in the world. Taking place in mid-July, it predominantly hosts alternative rock and electronic artists and is well worth a visit.

Roskilde, Denmark

This is one of the biggest festivals anywhere in Europe and is one not to be missed. Running from June 30th, 2011, it is a non-profit event with the aim of developing music and culture in the region, and gives tourists a great reason to visit a usually expensive country. Every year it’s a favorite with visitors from all over the world and this year the headlining acts are the Arctic Monkeys, Iron Maiden and M.I.A.

Exit, Serbia

As one of the most interesting venues to hold a festival, Exit is held in the Petrovaradin Fortress of Novi Sad. Regarded as one of the jewels in the European festival scene, it runs for four days and has attracted a number of big names since 2005. Over the years it has often been used to get across political and social messages and even has its own record label which issues MP3 releases.

Oxegen, Ireland

Why not visit stunning Ireland as part of your European adventure and take in the country’s biggest festival, Oxegen? The four day festival is held at Punchestown Racecourse and hosts over 90,000 people each day. It’s seen as Ireland’s answer to Glastonbury and for some is regarded as a better festival. Some huge names have played here over the years like Green Day, Kings of Leon, Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Foo Fighters.

The Isle of Wight Festival, UK

In its original form, this festival attracted such legendary names as Bob Dylan, who played to an estimated 200,000 people in 1969; and The Doors, The Who and Jimi Hendrix the following year, where around 600,000 witnessed one of the best concerts ever held in Europe. These days the festival has been revamped and moved to a different site, but it’s still a great one to enjoy.

Have you decided? Are you going to one or all? Just make sure you book your ticket and get ready to party!

Must Visit Mediterranean Cruise Ports

Mediterranean cruises are becoming increasingly more popular. There are more than a hundred ports served by a wide range of cruise lines. Here are some of the most interesting ports which you can visit:
-Funchal:  The city of Funchal, the largest population of the Maderian archipelago, is named after the large amounts of fennel that grew wild. The city rises straight up from the sea to an altitude of almost 5000 feet.
 The city offers all year round good weather, stunning scenery, fantastic shopping opportunities for locally made crafts and embroidery plus a varied choice of activities such as vigorous hiking to placid contemplation of nature.     
-Ajaccio: Located in the isle of Corsica, Ajaccio is one of the most picturesque ports that can be found in the whole Mediterranean. The island of Corsica was ruled by more than four centuries by the Genovese. The Italian influence can be appreciated in some of the street names and the local cuisine. However Ajaccio is quintessentially French as it is depleted with an array of patisseries and stylish fashion shops, the main caveat is the price tag of these shops.
-Naples: The city offers striking architectural contrasts with elegant 18th century palaces standing next to Soviet style block of flats. The city offers a vibrant atmosphere combining cafes as chic as fashionable as the ones we would expect in Italian northern cities like Florence with traditional food stalls offering fresh vegetables or tripe.
Without doubt the most famous attraction near Naples is the city of Pompeii. Located 15 miles southeast of Naples, Pompeii used to be a buoyant city till the eruption of the Mt Vesuvius which buried the whole city in ash.  The town was covered in ash till the 1860s were an excavation began revealing the city.
-Palma de Mallorca: The capital of the Balearics Islands is a must see destination for all the architecture enthusiasts. It offers a delightful blend of Gothic, Moorish and Renaissance styles. Cruise voyagers can find an array of fountains, grand churches or old castles in its winding streets. The beaches are very close by the city and the water is tantalisingly clear.
-Lanzarote: The northernmost of the Canary Islands offers sub- tropical climate with temperatures remaining stable throughout the whole year. The island is volcanic in its origin; some of areas of the island offer a lunar landscape as a matter of fact some parts of the science fiction saga of Planet of the Apes were filmed in Lanzarote. The island boasts interesting volcanic features such as the longest volcanic tunnel in the world which is over 7 km long and the volcano park at Timanfaya is the most popular attraction at the island.
-Las Palmas: Though its scenery is not as dramatic as the one in Lanzarote, it is a prime destination for sun worshippers. The island enjoys warm weather all year round and boasts amazing beaches like “La Playa de Las Canteras” which is one of the longest beaches in the world.
The ports palm tree lined streets are all clean and endowed with exuberant floral displays

Natural hot spring spa destinations in Eastern Europe

Once the preserve of the wealthy and privileged, who would travel across Europe to ‘take the waters’, modern spas can be traced to various ancient towns whose residents recognised the beneficial properties of their naturally occurring thermal springs and mineral-rich waters.

Look past the travelling Victorian gentry and you’ll find the Ottoman Turks and the Romans also put great store in the rejuvenating and healing powers of naturally heated water. There’s evidence that the practice of bathing goes even further back, to the Babylonians and Ancient Greeks and there’s no reason not to suppose that mankind took a dip as soon as they encountered this most invigorating of natural resources. Even the Japanese macaque, commonly known as the snow monkey, recognises the benefits of a nice hot spring.

Spa resorts in Eastern Europe

 While there are spa resorts available worldwide, many areas within Eastern Europe benefit from the naturally occurring resources of geothermal waters. Heated water has a greater capacity to hold dissolved minerals, leading to springs that are particularly nutrient-rich. The exact composition will vary depending on the location and geological conditions but all can have beneficial properties.

Add areas of stunning natural beauty and the fact that Eastern Europe can offer such great value for money and it’s little wonder that the region – from Hungary and Slovakia to Romania and the Czech Republic – is becoming so popular when it comes to spa resorts and wellness holidays.

 Wellness holidays

 Everyone needs the occasional break from the stresses and strains of modern life but some holidays, loaded with too much rich food, late nights and alcohol, can leave you feeling more burned out than rejuvenated.

Wellness holidays are different, being specially formulated to help you achieve relaxation, peace of mind and physical well-being.

Facilities and treatments may vary from one resort to the next, but may include:

  •   Wellness consultation and specially designed programme. The consultation, undertaken by a qualified health professional could include a lifestyle questionnaire, live blood cell analysis, breath-function test, blood sugar and cholesterol analysis and spine, joint and muscular assessment. A programme will then be specially drawn up based on the results, as well as your own personal health goals.
  •   Weight loss programmes, complete with personally tailored diets and exercise programmes.
  •   Water treatments, based in a variety of swimming pools, thermal baths, saunas, steam rooms and more.
  •   Exercise classes and facilities, which could include – but are certainly not restricted to – aqua fitness, yoga, Pilates, tai chi and Nordic walking.
  •   Beauty treatments often making use of natural resources such as rich, mineral-packed mud.

 Spa resorts in Hungary

 Budapest is quite rightly known as the city of spas. Some 80 thermal springs emerge in and around the Hungarian capital, explaining why it’s built its reputation over centuries. You can still see the ruins of the giant bath-houses the Romans built to capitalise on the thermal waters, while some of the baths built by the Turks around 500 years ago are still in use today.

Budapest is most certainly one of the most famous spa resorts in Hungary, but there are many other destinations to consider.

Héviz is a stone’s throw away from the stunning Lake Balaton – the biggest inland lake in central Europe, nicknamed the Hungarian Sea and the largest natural thermal lake that is suitable for bathing anywhere in the world.

The small village of Bük is home to one of the most active mineral springs in Europe and Sárvár is a charming spa town featuring two different kinds of thermal water. Close to the River Raba, it also offers alternative activities such as canoeing, kayaking and fishing.

Spa resorts in the Czech Republic

 The Czech Republic is another great spa destination and Danubius have a range of spa holiday offers centred around the famous resort of Mariánské Lázn? (Marienbad in German). Situated right next to the German border, in the area formerly known as Bohemia, the town is surrounded by rolling forest full of deer. Natural springs water verdant pavilions  while also providing the spa element.

This is, of course, just a taster. There are a host of spa and natural hot spring resorts in Eastern Europe just waiting to be discovered.

About the Author: Travel writer Alexandru Rotaru specialises in finding and reviewing the most popular spa resorts in Eastern Europe.

The Amsterdam Clubbing Guide

A night out in Amsterdam is without a doubt a fabulous experience. The city is one of the capitals of nightlife in Europe, well, possibly even in the World. Needless to say, the clubs in the city are one of the best in terms of quality, serving not only top class atmosphere but also music on a truly master level.

Unlike many other cities, best places to go out in Amsterdam are not located in one particluar spot. For Liverpool it might be the Concert Square, for Manchester, the famous Deansgate but in Amsterdam party spots are spread around the city centre. And, each of those places offers something unique to a nightlife goer in the city.

The Rembrandplein is filled with larger bars, including the famous Escape, the top electronic music venue frequented both by locals and tourists alike. Other notable clubs include Club Homo and another famous venue, Studio80. The latter is famous for its more experimental approach to electronic music.

Another famous clubbing spot is the Leidseplein. Three large well known clubs are located there. Paradiso, the World famous concert venue, Melkweg and Sugar Factory. Each of those clubs specializes in different types of music, so you may want to check all three out to taste their variety.

But Amsterdam nightlife is not about clubs and bars only. Hosted parties at random locations are another clubbing highlight of the city. A bit more expensive than the usual club entry fee, those parties offer much better music, top class DJs and an amazing atmosphere. Westergasfabriek is one of the locations for such parties. A former factory, now offers its several buildings to those top class parties.

One of the greatest things about the nightlife in Amsterdam is the abundance of information that you can find online relating to current and planned events. Surely with such an abundance of things going on in the club scene, it could be difficult to track anything, however, few website manage to organize a lot of information really well.

Lastly, if you are courageous enough, you might want to visit the famous Red Lights District. It is located between the central station and the popular Dam Square. One of the soft highlights of the place is the chance to observe the working girls in the fully bright windows while they display their charms.

On the Red Lights district you may also find some erotic museums and discover the art of romance and sensual pleasure from the past.

One note of warning, taking any pictures in the district is strictly prohibited. If you are caught doing so, your film will be destroyed and you might be thrown out of the area.

It is a truly unique experience to be a part of and witness the famous nightlife of the Dutch capital. And, if you are going to the city, then I hope that my short introduction will offer some good pointers and hints as to where to look for the best of the Amsterdam nightlife.

Thomas is a keen travel writer, covering a wide range of topics, from city breaks to tourist attractions in Europe.

Top 10 things to do in Edinburgh

Castles, festivals, lively pubs and one of the UK’s most charming city centres makes Edinburgh a fantastic choice for a getaway. The Scottish vibe takes on many different hues in this cosmopolitan city, where the top 10 list of things to do in Edinburgh includes everything from single malt tastings to hikes up extinct volcanoes.

Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh is a city made for walking. Its streets wind up, down, around and over the hilly terrain, where every new corner offers a surprise. Plenty of history is etched into the city core of Edinburgh, which also boasts a wonderful array of trendy cafés, bars, boutiques and art galleries. There aren’t many bad things to say about Scotland’s capital, but bring a stout rain jacket and some woollies to deal with the notoriously fickle weather.

Edinburgh Castle: the city’s top attraction deserves its popularity. For 1,000 years, this magnificent fortress has stood over Edinburgh and a tour offers both stunning and panoramic views as well as inspiring fantasies about kings, knights and days gone by.

Museum of Scotland and Royal Museum: these two repositories of Scottish heritage are simply loaded with cool antiquities, a cache of weapons and other engaging exhibits. The sleek, modern design of the building is the perfect balance to its contents, the Millennium Clock and the Victorian atrium.

Arthur’s Seat: how many other cities can boast an extinct volcano? A relatively easy climb rewards travellers who scale this mount at the city’s eastern edge with mind-bending views in all directions and a dose of exercise.

Royal Botanic Garden: the truly impressive collection of plants, trees and flowers in Edinburgh’s urban garden creates a great atmosphere for quiet strolls or an escape from the bustle of the city.

Princes Street: under the shadow of the castle is the city’s most exciting strip of high-end shops and funky boutiques. There’s a reason Edinburgh is the UK’s second-hottest shopping hub, and the dining options in the West End neighbourhood at the end of Princes Street ensure you’ll stay nourished for the next round.

Old Town: Edinburgh’s medieval core is a maze of cobbled streets and buildings all askew. Drop in anywhere along the Royal Mile and allow yourself to get lost. Hours of memorable wandering are guaranteed and a taxi is always on hand to return you safely to your hotel.

The National Galleries: Scotland’s exquisite collection of art is spread over five different buildings, including some real gems like the Burrell Collection. The artwork ranges from pieces by Renaissance masters to pop art.

The Edinburgh Festival: need a reason to visit Edinburgh? Plan your trip in August around the city’s world-famous Edinburgh Festival, a panoply of culture and art. It’s actually several festivals held in congruence around the city, featuring cool indie music at the Fringe Festival, classical Scottish dance and music at the International Festival and a host of smaller events.

Dean Village: this amazing grain-milling settlement from the 12th century has been completely restored and is open to the public as a living museum. Soak in the tranquil ambiance, learn a bit of history and leave time for a long stroll along the Water of Leith riverside path.

Palace of Holyroodhouse: another of Edinburgh’s fantastic royal legacies is this palace built by King James IV in the 16th century. The palace and its lush interior are open to the public whenever the royal family is not present. Adjacent is Holyrood Park, the city’s largest public park that’s like a microcosm of the Scottish countryside, with a loch, rolling meadows and crags.

John is a guest blogger from National Car Hire who provide car hire in Edinburgh and across the UK

Happy Times in Hertfordshire

Five of the Best Family Days Out in Hertfordshire

Hampshire travel
Hampshire travel

The county of Hertfordshire is a delightful mixture of open agricultural landscape and natural woodlands, picturesque and historic market towns and vibrant cities. A former Roman settlement, the county is steeped in history with remnants of the Roman occupation preserved for visitors, alongside a stunning selection of some of Britain’s finest stately homes and gardens. With no shortage of fascinating museums, wildlife parks, outdoor activity centres, woodlands and grassland areas to explore and much more to see and do it’s tricky to pick favourites from all that Hertfordshire has to offer. If you don’t have time for anything else though, here are five of the best family days out to enjoy in Hertfordshire.

  1. Paradise Wildlife Park, nr Broxbourne – Paradise Park really is ‘where the wild things are’ in Hertfordshire! If you’ve ever wanted to come face-to-face with a white lion, meet a meerkats or take tea with a tiger then Paradise Park can make it happen. There are oodles of animals to meet and you can even feed them with the park’s specially prepared feeding bags. Kids will love playing in any or all of the park’s five adventure playgrounds, the Tumble Jungle or Paradise Lagoon. Tigers of a different kind will enjoy the ‘On Safari Adventure Golf’ – eighteen holes of animal-themed crazy golf. Aside from the exotic animals you can do some real wildlife spotting of your own; Paradise Park’s extensive ancient woodland is home to deer, beaver, owls, foxes, hedgehogs and butterflies as well as a host of interesting plants and flowers. And when you need a break from the excitement you can always get a snack or a drink in the Safari Suite or Tiger Treetops café.
  2. Knebworth House and Park, Knebworth, Stevenage – A stately home with dinosaurs?! It’s true. Not only is Knebworth House a magnificent example of a Tudor-Gothic mansion house and a fabulous place to spend a day’s exploration in its own right, but the house sits in 250 acres of rolling wooded parkland. Knebworth House is immediately surrounded by twenty-five acres of immaculately tended gardens, but beware the Dinosaur Trail. Follow this path and you’ll bump into seventy-two scarily realistic dinosaurs lurking amidst the shrubbery. Don’t be too shocked when you find a mammoth in the marigolds or a brontosaurus beneath the beech trees. If that all sounds a bit much, mums and dads can send the kids into Knebworth’s maze and lose them for a while, giving parents the chance to browse the kitchen garden and the herb garden or grab a cuppa from the Terrace Garden Room. In Knebworth Park, besides the rolling acres of picnic-perfect greenery there’s a miniature railway and an adventure playground.
  3. The Snow Centre, Hemel Hempstead – Whether you’re a first timer on the slopes or a pro when it comes to snow, the emphasis is on family fun at the Snow Centre. Giving ‘chilling out’ a whole new meaning. With the main 160 metre slope constantly refreshed by state-of-the-art snow cannons, as well as a slope for learners the choice of method by which you get from the top to the bottom is yours. Show-offs will want to ski or snowboard, but for pure fun and an enjoyably thrilling ride you can jump on one of Snow Centre’s nifty lightweight sledges, skim your way down on an inflatable Airboard or just crazily spin, slide and bounce to the bottom on a rubber ring. Do it once and you’ll be hooked, so it’s a good job there are lifts to save you the effort of trudging all the way up to the top of the slope again. When you feel like defrosting and watching others have fun on the slopes, the Edge café is the perfect spot for that warming après-ski refreshment.
  4. Willows Farm Village, St Albans – Willows Farm Village packs in a lot of fun for the whole family; where else can you try your hand a driving a mini JCB digger, indulge in a spot of sheep racing or jump aboard Tristan the Runaway Tractor? Willows farm has amusements for kids (and big kids) of all ages, from funfair rides to falconry displays and from ferret fun to Frisbee golf. Under-fives have their own indoor and outdoor play areas and there’s a pets corner of farmyard favourites, with lambs and chicks adding to the ‘aaah! – factor’. Elsewhere there are friendly wallabies and reindeer to meet; you can go panning for gold or go for a bounce in the Bouncy Haystack or on the trampolines. With so much to see and do it’s a good job that Willows Farm Village offers plenty of options for refuelling, from ice-creams to barbecued burgers. And if you happen to overdo lunch in the Farmhouse Restaurant, there’s always the option to walk it off with a stroll around the lake.
  5. River Lee Country Park, Broxbourne – Ah, the great outdoors. There’s nothing more enjoyable than a family day out in a great British Park. Few come greater than the award-winning River Lee Country Park which covers a thousand acres and stretches from Broxbourne, Hertfordshire to Waltham Abbey in neighbouring Essex. The park provides a network of paths that link numerous lakes, waterways and open spaces, so there are many different ways to explore the park. Wildlife is abundant, so those with a keen eye may spot Muntjac deer, barn owls, mink, grass snakes, water voles, kingfishers and more. Activities-wise, the park offers opportunities for white water rafting at the new Waltham Cross White Water Centre, whilst gentler boating pursuits can be found at the Lee Valley Boat Centre in Broxbourne. Bicycles can be hired from the Old Mill in Broxbourne, and those keen on fishing can obtain day permits to try their luck in the River Lee. The park is also home to one of Hertfordshire’s most historically significant buildings: the Rye House Gatehouse. One of the first brick buildings in Britain, Rye House is also one of the finest examples of a medieval moated site in Hertfordshire.

Like so many of Hertfordshire’s attractions, River Lee Country Park contains enough variety, surprises and activities for all of the family that you’ll find it provides not one great family fun day out in Hertfordshire, but many.

This was a guest post by John for Luton Hoo Hotel and spa Hertfordshire

A Pub Crawl Through London

Red Lion on Duke of York Street
Red Lion on Duke of York Street

The real conviviality of the English people is easily found in its pubs. More than a bar, more than just a place to eat, a pub is a meeting place. Babies are welcome. Families are encouraged. Single women can feel at home in a pub, and couples will find candle light, fireside dining, and cozy corners to snuggle up in. While London now can claim to have some of the finest dining anywhere, it is in its pubs that you will find the homiest cuisine. So let’s take a tour of some favorite London pubs for a pint and a dish or two!

The Horniman at Hay’s Galleria sits on the river Thames right near Tower Bridge. It has tables outside by the river for the view and the sunshine and inside it is absolutely beautiful with crystal chandeliers and dark wood panelling. Try their justifiably famous Fish and Chips.

Established in 1675, The Guinea in Mayfair looks like a quintessential English pub on the outside. Open the door and walk in and take a seat at one of the comfy upholstered benches. The Guinea is famous for its savory pies and real ale. If you fancy a more formal meal walk next door to its adjoining restaurant the Guinea Grill for a wonderful aged steak and old world service.

True beer aficionados will want to visit The White Horse pub on Parsons Green for its long list of beers. This is where beer festivals are held and beer education occurs. Serious beer lovers congregate here. But along with its huge reputation for beer it holds a strong following in sway for its inventive pub food. So it makes a perfect destination for both.

The Red Lion on Duke of York Street is so pretty inside it is worth even a peek in. It is lined with beautiful cut glass mirrors and has great mahogany paneling. Classic pub food including sandwiches and salads make this a fun lunch stop when you are in the center of London. A beautiful old Victorian pub, Princess Louise on High Holborn has etched glass, wood panelling and comfortable booths to settle into. Delicious food and great beer prices make the Princess a favorite of Londoners.

For a family venue with a view of the river Thames, make your way to The Dickens Inn on St. Katherine Docks. It is fun, really pretty, full of atmosphere, and Charles Dickens’ grandson opened it! In addition to all this, they have frequent entertainment. It is also a beautiful location to spend an evening on a date night. Try their Fisherman’s Pie or the 28 day matured Rib Eye Steak. And finally, you can’t visit London without a visit to the Sherlock Holmes Pub for its dishes named after his books and a replica of his study upstairs. The food is lovely and the atmosphere absolutely superb.

Alex is a financial journalist and part time travel blogger. He loves blogging about exotic destinations and beautiful scenery although most of the time he only gets to write about financial issues such as mortgages, loans and umbrella companies .

Making the Most of a Trip to Prague

Whether you are planning a weekend break visit to Prague or a longer stay to the middle of Bohemia, Czech Republic, then this article will hopefully help you to make sure . Prague is, also, a popular weekend break with some of the best sightseeing in the world, making it difficult in choosing what to see and do.

If only in Prague for a weekend break, plan your visit carefully if you want to take in the many sites, but it’s lovely wandering the winding cobblestone streets looking at the fine architecture with styles from many centuries. Prague hosts a number of galleries, monuments, castles, historical churches, museums and so much more.  Prague, also, has a great nightlife with the many music clubs of nearly any style. You most likely will want to go to “Old Town,” and visit one or more of the historical churches, for example, and don’t forget the wonderful Palace of the Lords of Kunstat.  Then rest for a bit in the Old Town Square and enjoy a beer.  More to be seen is in Prague’s Lesser Town with the Prague Castle. Make sure to go to the observation tower on the top of Petrin Hill in the park for a great view.  St. Nicholas Church is very much worth a visit and there is much more to see in Lesser Town.  Prague’s New Town is very large. Due to mostly being demolished and rebuilt in the 19th century, it is much more modern that the Lesser Town or Old Town.  But, there are monasteries, palaces, towers and the Toy Museum to say the least so put on your walking shoes and tour around.  You can always stop to rest and watch the hustle and bustle of city life in Wenceslas Square.  For many, a visit to the Jewish Quarter holding the sad remains of the former WWII Jewish ghetto is a must.  Interesting is the Old Jewish Cemetery and there are several synagogue’s to visit.

Then there is the Czech food, mainly consisting of beef or pork in sauces and dumplings and a side dish like rice or potatoes. A favorite is Svickova or Rajiska a dish of meat, sauce, and whipped cream.  The Czechs, also, like to use chicken, duck, fish, turkey, rabbit, and lamb in their dishes so there is a good variety.  But many, when out and about, just enjoy having fried cheese with baked potatoes and tartar sauce or one of the tasty soups.  Also, it is almost a must to sit in a beer garden under the sky, enjoying drinking one of the perfect beers along with some of the many fine cheeses and the tasty sausages.

Sugar makes a person happy so happily enjoy the pancakes filled with jam, fruit or even ice cream and then covered with whipped cream, more sugar, and/or almonds.  Fruit dumplings or Kolac (cakes) with jam in the middle are very tasty.  The salads are huge and, also, very sweet.  You won’t go hungry or thirsty in Prague!!

Prague winter breaks, especially during Christmas, can be delightful even with the cold as the lighted markets and snow are quite romantic.

Prague is a wonderful weekend break with cheap deals on restaurants, hotels, and pubs and fantastic sightseeing.  And don’t forget the food and beer!!

This article was written by Ricky May, on behalf of Holiday 365, who offer fantastic deals on family holiday parks and boating holidays uk.

Greek Island Hopping

Greek island of Crete
Greek island of Crete

If you plan to visit Greece, wouldn’t it be a waste to spend the whole trip on one single Greek island when there is so much more waiting to be explored? Why not Greek island hopping? This means crossing the sea waters by multiple shorter journeys between islands, see the wonderful coastal scenery, explore wonderful villages and meet some of the greatest people in the world.

Pure Sense Of Freedom

If you aren’t constrained by a precise schedule and itinerary, Greek island hopping brings a real sense of freedom: you are no longer stuck into spending a night in a hotel or villa that might not be to your taste, plus, just imagine waking up every morning in a different place and moving on whenever you feel like it. Besides, the great thing is that English is widely spoken, you can easily find rooms to rent at a good price and ferry links on the main routes are frequent, so here you have all you need for a superb budget holiday.

Sun, Beach And Water Sports

The dazzling blend of sun, sea and sandy beaches is complimented by a lot of vacation activities. Famous islands Santorini and Paros now have water parks, great bike trails and scuba diving opportunities, while other islands including Naxos, Lefkas and Rhodes are popular windsurfing spots. The Greek islands still have a relaxed and casual feel and even on the most crowded ones, you can still find a place just for yourself.

The Islands

Most travelers enrolling in Greek island hoping visit at least 4 – 5 islands on a usual two-week vacation and choose as the guide mark, the Greek capital, Athens. On a usual trip, most travelers choose to start their Greek island hopping in Athens and first get to Paros. From there you can pay a visit to neighboring island Antiparos, that’s before leaving for Naxos.

Once you get on Naxos, you can make time for an excursion to some of the beautiful Cycladic islands, there are over 200 islands. Also, from Naxos you can easily get to the islands of Ios (first settled by Phoenicians) and Santorini. Ios is typically more easily to get to, as Santorini is a day trip away, provided that you wake up in time not to miss the early ferry. From these main islands you can then choose to come back to Athens with an overnight boat.

Adventure And Excitement

The whole schedule might sound a bit hectic, but actually it is all very casual and easy-going. By taking day trips to neighboring islands and keeping accommodation to the minimum and planning your itinerary so that you get to the most popular spots, you can have an amazing vacation. Even if you don’t have more than a week’s time, you can still do some Greek island hopping and feel great exploring the sea waters and the stunning Greek landscapes.

But the more time you have at your disposal, the more places you get to see and explore. Think about it, in about three weeks you can explore the whole Aegean, visiting smaller and more secluded islands and enjoy your Greek island hopping vacation there without thinking too much about schedule and if there isn’t a boat for one or two days then it will all be part of your vacation.

 

This article has been contributed by Aishwarya Vohra. She works for Offshore Ally, which is a company of competent talented virtual assistant and SEO link builders. She likes to read wants to travel the world. Connect with her via Twitter.

Images by Peace Correspondent

Unique Holiday Experience at Sicily Villas

Italy is the most famous tourist destination due to its beautiful beaches, mountains, hills, culture, cuisine and wine. Most of the cities of Italy are world famous attracting tourists every year. Sicily is an autonomous region of Italy that offers beautiful sceneries and extravagant beaches.
Italy is a remarkable destination that offers a unique kind of life experience. It is rich in culture with ancient roman architecture and renaissance palaces. Italy has lot to offer for everyone whether you are nature lover, history lover or fun lover. Italy greatly portrays the ancient Roman Catholic culture. The beautiful landscape of the country is a renowned attraction and popular spots for travel writers, painters and photographers to express their art form. You can have a vivacious experience of your stay in Sicily, Italy by living in rental villas or farmhouses that give you luxurious accommodations.
Sicily is an island located just off of the coast of Italy in the Mediterranean Sea. Sicily, like regions of Italy when viewed separately, has its own rich culture, art, music, literature and enthusiastic people. The two most popular regions of Sicily are Palermo and Trapani, which are also two important historical cities, very rich in monuments, churches and art museums, close to the two main airports in Sicily. If you are a patron of art, history or a novice traveler, Sicily has a lot to offer you and can certainly not be done in a day. To truly explore the city and its surroundings you need to relax in its hospitality and absorb the culture. There are several villas in Sicily that will give you the chance to set back and enjoy the culture at your own pace.
Sicily too reflects the culture and hospitality of its neighbors. Over time Sicily has become a famous tourist destination and Sicily vacation rentals have gained in popularity due to the growing demand.
Do visit Sicily, Italy for the most enticing exotic holidays. Also don’t miss beaches and villas in Amalfi Coast, which is true beach lover’s paradise. For your accommodations, find exotic rental villas and live in the lap of luxury in the heart of Italy’s beach hub. Explore the area at your own pace and take in all the local offerings to truly experience Italy. Finding appropriate vacation rentals can often be a challenging task as safety and security are important for a peaceful vacation. To find the ideal source for your vacation rental villas find resources that are both trusted and have received positive reviews from previous customers.