Essential Things to Pack for Winter Travel

A winter holiday appears like the ideal getaway until you understand that you’ll be faced with not only cold temperatures and breezy winds but, in some cases, challenging weather conditions like heavy snowfall and rain too! Winters vary in different regions of the earth. While some winters give friendly, chilly weather, few are more challenging and are distant from being a winter wonderland.

That’s why it’s essential to be well equipped when you’re gone on your desired winter holidays. But don’t worry about the details; we can support you out with that. Dismiss all fears and doubts with this list of essential things to pack for winter travel!

MEDICINE

All kinds of diseases may ambush you through your winter holidays, so be sure to get ready for them!

A common concern is regular coughing fits caused by the harsh, dry air. An OTC cough syrup will possibly help you in the situation. Whip them out whenever you want some relief for disturbed throats and coughing!

DOWN JACKET

Your first line of defense versus the howling winds and biting cold should be a regular down jacket. Down jackets are excellent insulators and guards you facing the severe winter winds. When traveling to an area that snows a lot, grab a down jacket that is waterproof to prevent yourself from getting soaked.

It would be best if you also go for a jacket with a detachable hood. A hood lined with an insulating material like synthetic wool or faux fur will be even better to help in defending your head from the cold.

THERMALS

In harsh winter situations where temperatures fall way below 0, you’ll need to have a set of thermal underwear (usually called long johns). Long johns catch and utilize your own heat as protection facing the wintertime freeze. These will maintain you snug and warm and act as an excellent extra layer of heat maintenance if your down jacket solely isn’t performing the job completely. Opt for woolen ones when going to sub-zero colds, as those work most useful.

SCARVES

Scarves are often ignored, but they are essential in winter weather! The body loses heat and gets colder when there are regions of exposed skin. A scarf will be helpful to help maintain the body’s natural heat by preserving the neck. Cashmere is the most suitable material for scarves if you’re looking to stay warm.

BEANIE

While a jacket hood gives some layer of protection to the head from severe winter conditions, it doesn’t always work, particularly in extreme temperatures. For added protection, another winter travel essential is an excellent heat-retaining beanie. Do I need that, you ask? Well, try to remember the last time you fell sick from the weather. Didn’t you “feel it in your head” first before the sickness expanded to the rest of your body?

Keeping the head warm is essential in guaranteeing that other parts of the body stay warm. Therefore, to make sure that your winter vacations aren’t cut short, pack a good beanie made of wool or fleece that suits snugly to protect warmth. Beanies also play an important role in protecting your ears from the cold, so it’s a handy item!

Salvador, Brazil Travel Guide

brazil

Salvador has the energy and unembellished beauty that only a few cities can match. This city was once the spectacular capital of the New World colony of Portugal, but today the pulsating heart of the Afro-Brazilian community of the country. Its brightly-hued centre is a living museum of golden-laden churches and seventeenth- and eighteenth-century architecture. Here are the top must-see attractions in Salvador, Brazil. 

Igreja NS do Bonfim

According to one of my well-travelled bar owner who gives out custom made custom made drink chips, the popular eighteenth-century church, located some kilometers just north of Comerica is the source of the colored ribbons (fitas) that is seen everywhere in Salvador, a symbol of Bahia and a church souvenir. In the Room of Miracles (Sala dos Milagres), devotees leave ex-votos, letters, and photos.  

Pelourinho

Pelourinho is Cidade Alta’s centerpiece; this UNESCO World Heritage site features magnificent churches and colonial buildings. Wander through the cobblestone streets to gaze up at the oldest architecture in the city. Cultural centers as well as schools of capoeira, dance, and music pack these seventeenth- and eighteenth-century buildings. Thanks to UNESCO funding, this place has undergone significant restoration work. Admittedly, the Pelourinho has in this process lost most of its character, but it is an understatement to say that it’s now better and safer. 

Museu Nautico da Bahia

The superb nautical museum contains relics and exhibits from the days of seafaring and displays on the slave trade. Also, it offers excellent views on the surroundings. All information in this museum is offered in both English and Portuguese. 

Largo do Pelourinho

This picture-perfect square was once the whipping post site – one of many close-by locations where many slaves were punished and exposed. In 1835, when slavery was abolished, this neighborhood soon fell into absolute disrepair. Major renovation efforts were initiated in the 1990s to preserve the colonial houses and churches of the cobblestone square. The square is today the heart of this historic center. 

Museu Afro-Brasileiro

Home to one of the most important collections in Bahia, this museum exhibits pottery, baskets, wood carvings, and other crafts and artwork linking African and Brazilian artistic conditions. The highlight of the Museu Afro-Brasileiro is a room filled with magnificent carved wooden panels illustrating orishas (spirits popular in Afro-Brazilian spirituality) by Carybe, who is the most renowned twentieth-century fine artist in Salvador. 

Mercado Modelo

The original nineteenth-century Customs House, where slaves were first housed once they arrived in the country was destroyed partly in 1986 in a fire. After restoration, this place was transformed into a market. The Mercado Modelo is a nice spot to pick up trinkets, and some cafes offer a seating area with spectacular views of the bay.

What OTC Medications To Bring To Your Travel Abroad

first aid kit

Many people consider their first aid kit as the most important item on their packing list. This is because if an unexpected emergency occurs, they want to be prepared for it. 

Perhaps you are among those who doubt the necessity of packing a first aid kit. Maybe you prefer to carry along some medication instead. If so, what over-the-counter medications can you include for maximum preparedness? 

What are the Benefits of a First Aid Kit?

  • It prepares you for a medical emergency and enables you to treat basic injuries quickly
  • It helps you protect your family and friends and render aid to others in need
  • A kit contains all the essentials you require, packed together in a carrier or box
  • You will be able to relieve irritation caused by insect bites and possibly prevent scarring

Over the counter medication that will help you deal with emergencies without having to search for medical clinics in the unfamiliar territory include:

Hydrocortisone

This comes in the form of a spray, cream, or ointment. It is an oral medication used to relieve symptoms of insect bites, stings, prickly heat, and nappy rash. Most treatments are mild and can be purchased from pharmacies that dispense a maximum of 1% strength.

Cough Medication

For mild cases of sore throats and coughs, lozenges, cough drops, and cough syrups come in useful. Let the pharmacist know about any other medication you’re taking so that he can recommend cough medication that is compatible.

Some cough mixtures contain paracetamol and Ibuprofen, for example, therefore if these ingredients are present in the medication you are taking, you might be in danger of an overdose.

Pain Killers

Your first aid kit should have fever reducers and painkillers. These come in handy in providing relief for minor aches and pains. Paracetamols help reduce temperatures and they are generally safe.

Aspirin can be a life-saver if you encounter an adult experiencing chest pains. Other useful painkillers to have are acetaminophen and ibuprofen which is good for muscle aches and pains.

Anti-diarrhea Medication

Mild cases of diarrhea can be treated with over-the-counter medication such as bismuth subsalicylate (trade name Pepto-Bismol) or Loperamide. These are available in tablet or liquid form.

Whilst these drugs might not treat the infection, they will halt the watery bowel movements and the discomfort that accompanies them. Loperamide which is also known as Imodium can be purchased over the counter, and so can Pepto-Bismol.

Diphenhydramine

Allergy medication is an essential item that should be in every first aid kit. Diphenhydramine is considered one of the best as it provides relief for a wide range of allergic reactions.

The downside is that it causes drowsiness. Diphenhydramine can also be obtained in the form of a cream that can be used to treat insect bites.

Loratadine is another allergy medication, but it is more costly. However, it is a good option if you want to avoid the feeling of drowsiness.

Carrying a first aid kit with you when you travel is a good idea, as it helps you contain an emergency situation as you await help. First-aid measures reduce recovery time for the patient, and nothing beats the feeling of satisfaction you get when you help someone out.

5 Point Packing List When Going on Safari

A safari is different from any other tour you have been on. It’s an exciting journey that takes you into unfamiliar territory, hence you need to be prepared to face whatever it may bring. Here are some tips on what to pack so that you are suitably equipped for your safari.

The Right Luggage

When deciding on the type of luggage to carry along with you, it is good to keep in mind the mode of transportation that you will be using. Domestic aircraft have strict luggage limits as these are light carriers with limited capacity. Hence it is recommended that you carry a soft-sided bag without wheels; a Duffel bag is a good idea.

Similarly, when you are traveling by minivan or landrover, you need a bag that can easily be squeezed into the back. Most light aircraft limit baggage allowance to 15kg(33lbs). This is not difficult to achieve as safari lodges and camps will supply you with all you need in terms of linen and towels.

The Right Shoes to Pack

The shoes you pack will depend on the activity you have booked, for example, if you are on an adventure walking safari, light-weight hiking boots will come in handy. However, not much walking is involved in standard safaris, therefore comfortable walking shoes or trainers will do. For the evenings, pack light slip-on shoes with some grip for safety.

What is the Appropriate Clothing?

The good news is that same-day laundry service is widely available on most tourist circuits, therefore you can keep your wardrobe changes to the minimum. The keywords to remember are comfortable and breathable when selecting clothes to pack. This will ensure that you are at ease during the long drives in the bush.

Do remember that in the tropics day and night temperatures fluctuate greatly, therefore prepare for this by dressing in layers. Pack a warm jacket for use during cold mornings and later in the evening when the temperatures drop.

It is not a must to purchase khaki-colored outfits for the safari, although earth colors hide smudges of dust and dirt. In addition, neutral colors will reflect the heat and keep you cool. But do avoid bright colored clothing as it may make you visible to certain species of animals.

Remember to pack swimwear, as most lodges and safari camps have swimming pools. You may also opt to dress up for dinner. Long-sleeved tops and long trousers will protect you from mosquitos; however, it’s best to leave expensive jewelry behind.

The Essential Equipment

An essential piece of equipment that you must have is a good quality pair of binoculars as they will enhance your game-viewing drives. Animals that are away on the horizon will be brought up close, a sensational experience, not to be missed.

Bring along a camera to catch memorable scenes of wildlife, fascinating landscape, and colorful traditional dancers.

A safari hat is an essential part of your wardrobe as it will offer protection against the tropical sun. The heat of Africa can be scorching and the last thing you need is sunburn. 

Last But Not Least

The following items are standard for all international travel:

  • Travel documentation, Travel insurance, passport, vaccination certificates.
  • The second pair of prescription glasses and your prescription medication
  • Photocopies of all personal documents
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • A good book

Safaris are special indeed, as they enable you to see animals in their habitat. Therefore go out there, get up close and marvel at the power and beauty of these wild creatures. You might get hooked on the safari experience as many others have before you.

5 Reasons Why You Should Travel Solo

Much as it’s great to share your excitement and enthusiasm with traveling companions when you are on the move, quiet moments for reflection as also invaluable in life. There are many reasons why you should travel solo and below are some of them.

You learn to be independent

Sometimes travel plans are put in disarray when companions change their minds and cancel a trip at the last minute. It can cause anguish and disappointment. Therefore, when you travel solo, it is liberating. You learn that lack of company cannot prevent you from following your dreams. When you travel alone, you are creative, you learn to enjoy your own company. As a solo traveler, you can take a break from socializing and seek company only when it suits you.

You spend less

Traveling with family and friends subjects you to a form of peer pressure. You are at times compelled to compromise on your budget and spend more than you intended. Differing tastes may mean spending precious funds on entry fees for monuments that do not particularly interest you. 

You may have to contribute to expensive nights out at fancy restaurants. The advantage of solo travel is that you can eat what you want and where you want. You can also opt to only visit places that are of special interest to you. Therefore you are more likely to stay within budget and may possibly even afford to extend your stay.

It motivates you to make friends

When companions travel together, they keep each other company. Hence, you are more likely to reach out and make friends with other travelers and local residents when you travel solo.

On the other hand, solo travelers are viewed as more approachable. People will feel less intimidated to talk to you and offer help if you need it. This opens the way for endless opportunities for interesting conversations which will enlighten you on differing viewpoints and cultures. You will be greatly enriched by the encounters.

You can follow your own schedule

Solo travel enables you to devote time to your pet projects or pursue a cherished hobby. Whether it is amateur photography, sketching landscapes, or a craft, you can take time out at your leisure to pursue it. Solitude helps you to tap into your creativity.

Another advantage of traveling alone is that you can truly achieve the break that you deserve. There is no pressure to maintain a frenetic pace. You can indulge in as many naps as you wish.

Traveling solo enhances your experience

When you are alone you can focus on the things that are important to you and plan your trip your way. This enhances the travel experience and you are more in tune with your desires. Being alone frees you of distractions and you respond more positively to new experiences.

When you leave family and friends behind, you break free from the familiar and focus your attention on the attractions around you. There is no one to remind you of what you left behind. This makes you more open-minded, and you will more readily embrace new experiences.

Everyone should try traveling solo at least once in their lives. Although it means going out of your comfort zone, solo travel helps you discover your inner strengths and attributes and it builds self-confidence.

4 Colorful Festivals in South America

The Latin America is such a vibrant continent and to add up to the already colorful atmosphere are their world-famous festivals that showcase their passion and spirit. Most festivals are of religious origins but there are also some that are made to celebrate extraordinary things or happenings. It’s quite hard to choose just 4 festivals that are truly unique and colorful because there’s just so many remarkable festivities to choose from, but after much deliberation here are the handpicked ones.

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS, MEXICO
Day of the Dead is the most distinct festival in Mexico, this vibrantly macabre celebration is done every year on the 1st and 2nd of November. “Gone but never forgotten” is very much literal in this festivity, since on the first day they honor all saints and all their loved ones who died as children and on the second day all those who died in adulthood. They bring the celebration to the cemeteries, with food (especially the favorites of their departed beloved), fruits, tequila, candles, music and pictures. It’s quite lively and positive for such a macabre festival name.

RIO CARNIVAL, BRAZIL
The world-famous festival and the most visited one in all of South America is none other than the celebration happening in the streets of Brazil. The 2 week long celebration is quite unparalleled, with it being the most flamboyant and ostentatious of all. Floats of unbelievable decorations, samba dancers showcasing their dancing skills and vibrant and intricate costumes, and the revelers that just jam-packing the streets day in and day out might be too much to take, but hey, you’re looking at the most grandiose carnival party in the world so might as well enjoy it.

INTI RAYMI, PERU
Inti Raymi or the Festival of the Sun, is the longest known pre-Columbian festival dated back when Inca Empire was still at its peak. Celebrated every winter solstice when the world is farthest from the sun, they celebrate the Sun God and and honor him with prayers, processions, music, dancing, food, flowers and llama sacrifices.

FIESTA DE LA VIRGEN DE LA CANDELARIA, BOLIVIA & PERU
This 2-week long festivities, starting in early February, is honored to the beloved Patron Saint of Copacabana and is centered in the sleepy fishing village around Lake Titicaca. It is undeniably the most flamboyant fusion of Catholic and pre-Columbian paganism rituals in South America. The festival brings the whole community together with music, dancing, and elaborated colorful costumes and intricately designed masks.

Travel China

China is a country in the eastern part of Asia and it is the most populous country in the world. This guide will help you learn how to get the most out of a trip to China. It’s a huge country and there’s a lot to discover.

The Forbidden City
Beijing is full of incredible experiences, from local traditions to historical architecture and culture. If you are planning a trip here, you can’t miss the Forbidden City. It’s a former Chinese palace from the era of the Ming Dynasty built over five hundred years ago in 1420. It has previously been home to Emperor’s and the Chinese government and is now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With brightly colored walls and beautifully crafted features around the whole grounds, you can explore it freely at your own pace and learn an awful lot about Chinese heritage.

The Temple of Heaven & Summer Palace
A couple of other famous landmarks to visit are the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace. Visually, these temples look incredible and they are definitely a great spot for a few unmissable photos. It won’t take you long to explore the temple of heaven which is right in the city center and is surrounded by beautiful gardens where you will find local singing and exercising together. If you have some extra time on your hands, it’s a really peaceful place to walk around, get some fresh air, and take in the culture that’s all around you.

The Great Wall of China
Beijing is also a great place to book a trip out to the Great Wall. You can get a day trip out, climb 800 meters up the wall, and get some fantastic views from the top. Many of these trips come with a tour of a China factory where you can see how traditional Chinese ceramics are made. Once you see the level of detail that goes into this work, you will discover it’s actually a really interesting tour and it only takes about half an hour to complete.

Xi’an & the Terracotta Army
Then there’s the city of Xi’an where you can see the famous terracotta army. They were originally built for the first emperor of china to give him an army that could protect him in the afterlife. There are three huge vault rooms and a museum exhibit to explore with over 8,000 soldiers. No two are the same with each figure having a completely different face or expression. It takes about three hours to see everything at the Terracotta Army exhibit, leaving you plenty of time to do even more with your day.

Giant Wild Goose Pagoda
If you are heading back to Cheyenne, then it’s a good idea to check out the Giant Wild Goose Pagoda. This is a stunning Buddhist temple that dates back to the seventh century with beautiful grounds and incredibly detailed shrines.

Chengdu
A trip to China won’t be complete without seeing the giant pandas. The best place to see these is in Chengdu at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. This is a non-profit facility where they are doing everything they can to conserve and protect giant pandas. You can get an up-close look at these guys on that tour.

Shanghai
Being one of China’s most modern cities, Shanghai has so much to offer. It’s full of intriguing marketplaces that you could literally spend all day getting lost in but one of the best to explore is the Yuyuan Bazaar. This place has everything from gadgets to clothes, art, and authentic Chinese Street food. Like most Chinese cities Shanghai has plenty of traditional gardens that allow you to step into a peaceful space away from the hustle and bustle of the streets. In fact, there’s even one right at the heart of the Yuyuan Bazaar where you can see cultural architecture bonsai trees and koi ponds.

If you are looking for the best views in Shanghai, then there are two places we can recommend. The first is heading to the top of the TV tower. Know that it will cost you around $22 to get a ticket to the observation deck but the views from up here are second to none. If you will only be here once then we think it’s definitely worth it.

The best view of Shanghai’s iconic skyline is completely framed and it can be found at the Bund. It’s great to come here at night and watch the city light up the sky. Other great things you can do from Shanghai include going to a silk factory where you can see how the Chinese make their authentic silk products. Or going for a day trip out to Suzhou, this city was built on a series of canals and is often referred to as the Venice of China. You can take a boat trip down the canals, meet the locals, and spend the day exploring the city.

Toronto Travel Guide

Toronto is located on the northern shore of Lake Ontario and it is the largest city in Canada. Besides being the capital of the province of Ontario, it is also a major cultural and economic center of Canada. It was founded in the late 1700s and used to be known as York. Toronto has a population of about 6 million and it attracts people from across the world. Neighborhoods such as Little Italy, Greektown, and Chinatown are some examples of this city’s diversity. Here are the top must-see attractions in Toronto.

CN Tower

The CN Tower is an iconic tower in Toronto that you will get to catch a glimpse of nearly everywhere you go in this city. This tower is among the seven wonders of the modern world.

Art Gallery of Ontario

At this gallery, art gets to meet architecture. The Art Gallery of Ontario was designed by Frank Gehry, a Toronto born architect. As a child, he used to visit the original Art Gallery of Ontario.

Casa Loma

This is an elegant hilltop castle that is equally impressive but from a different era entirely. Sir Henry Pellatt dreamt up this place a century ago. The spirit of the Torontonians is perfectly reflected in this model.

Parks and Gardens

If you are looking for a place to relax in Toronto, take a stroll in one of the many green spaces here such as the High Park and Edward Gardens. Students, couples, and families share the botanical displays here with some curious chipmunks. Toronto’s rejuvenated Distillery District near the waterfront mixes the new with the old in a tasteful way.

Royal Ontario Museum

The design of this museum is one of the most striking twists to a historic building. Browse through the galleries to see the depictions of the country’s past and the artifacts of the aboriginal people of Canada. You will also get to explore some natural exhibits and see artworks from across the globe.

Modern Canada Square

The modern Canada Square overlooks Lake Ontario and it is a cultural hub in the Harbourfront center. You can visit a Brewhouse or theater and you can relax in one of the center’s pleasant marina. Sports fans can visit the nearby Hockey Hall of Fame or catch a game in Rogers center.

Kensington Market

The Kensington Market will give you a different shopping experience entirely. There are many vintage stores here and this neighborhood represents the funky side of Toronto where anything goes. When it is time for lunch, you can try the Greek or Italian food or the typical Hogtown treat.

Summer Vacation in the Mediterranean Sea

With summer fast approaching for Europeans, it’s a good time to start thinking and planning where your summer vacation will take place. Planning you summer getaway isn’t as easy as you might think, besides the obvious essentials like a hot summer sun and sandy beaches on the seashore, there are a lot of other things, that you might want to take into consideration when planning your summer vacation. We’ll compose a list on some of the best summer destinations for 2019 and everything they have to offer, easing your search and hopefully narrowing down your list and choosing the perfect location for your summer getaway.

Malta

Malta is a small little island, located in the Mediterranean Sea just beneath Sicily, this small little country doesn’t disappoint when we take into consideration that it has some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe, topped by the Mediterranean Sea as a back drop, an added bonus is that most of the beaches in Malta are hardly even crowded. The spectacular seashores aren’t the only thing that put Malta first on are list, this small little island has a rich culture and tradition, with a number of historical sites for visitors to explore, getting in touch with the country’s culture along the way. The entire coastline of the island is 27 kilometers long, which means you can probably walk from one side of the country to the other in less than a day, but if you’re not keen on walking you could always rent a car or even take a ferry to see the lively cities of Silema, Valletta, Bugibba and the neighboring island of Gozo.

Portugal

The Mediterranean Sea seems to include the most wonderful destinations for a summer getaway and Portugal seems to fit right in. It’s no strange fact that Portugal is among the most visited destinations in Europe, with the number increasing on a yearly bases. Its spectacular coastlines, long sandy beaches, traditional fishing villages, vibrant cities and some of the finest wine attract visitors from all over the world. Portugal also has a rich history, a great indication for that, are its 14 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, like the Castelo de S. Jorge, Tower of Belem and Park and National Palace of Pena.

Montenegro

One of the most beautiful and heavily overlooked places in Europe is the small little country of Montenegro located in the Mediterranean Sea. The entire coast of Montenegro will surely have you seduced with it Mediterranean charm, rocky shore and its cool breeze in the summer nights. Montenegro is quite a diverse destinations suitable for all types all travelers, whether you’re looking for a more laid back experience enjoying the warm weather and medieval architecture cities such as Petrovac, Herceg Novi and Kotor or perhaps want to go all in and relax in the all-inclusive resorts of islet of Sveti Stefan, Porto Montenegro or the nightlife metropolis of Budva, Montenegro has you covered.