Tours & Travels
After working hard in the office/school and always striving imperatively to meet the deadlines, the sheer idea of a vacation rejuvenates the soul. So here are the top best vacation spots in America and Europe that provide an opportunity for tourists to hit the popular places in these wonderful countries.
Whenever we want to take a break, the first few things we think of are time availability, total expense, and location. Of course, once the mind is set on taking this much-needed break, the next logical step is finding a place to travel to. Now this is where most of us can find a hiccup in the plans as finding a vacation spot, that too in the United States is tough. There are so many places to visit and not enough time. So why not let us help you find few of the best vacation spots in America!
A total of 30 U.S. states have either saltwater coastlines on the shore of the ocean or lake coastlines. So you can imagine the wide range of choices when it comes to vacationing at the beach. Of course, there are many beaches which are favored more than others; due to the high tourist attraction. The following list has been compiled keeping this ideology in mind and also, the list is provided in no specific order.
Vacation at the Beach
Ho'okipa Beach, Maui, Hawaii
If you love the ocean and love taking beach vacations, then Ho'okipa beach is the place to be; especially if you love surfing and windsurfing as there are 4 distinct surf breaks. Each year, Ho'okipa hosts windsurfing competitions. The best time to visit is in the winters because of large surf. There are several areas where you can have picnics and take loads of pictures from the observation decks.
Lanikai Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
Lanikai is a very small beach; approximately 0.5 mile. However, it is one of the best beaches in the world. There is a residential area close to the beach and it doesn't have parking nearby. So you'll have to park your vehicle on the street and walk towards the beach. There are several shops that provide kayaks, paddle boards, canoes, and many other equipment on rent. It is advisable to visit the beach during the weekdays as weekends are mostly crowded with tourists and locals.
South Beach, Miami, Florida
Visiting South Beach is a beach-lover's dream as it draws the rich and the famous from all over the world. But that's not all. Relax at the beach, play water sports, sunbathe, click pictures, snorkel, sail, surf, and pretty much anything your heart desires on Miami's white sand-covered beach. After a fun-filled day at the beach, you can hit the clubs and enjoy a wild nightlife of Miami. The beach is clean, inviting, and will give you countless memories for a lifetime.
Venice Beach, Los Angeles, California
If you're looking for real California living, visit Venice Beach in Los Angeles. Of course, you have the regular beach activities such as surfing, volleyball, snorkeling, sunbathing, etc.; but what attracts people to this beach is how it has so much more. You have the option to do all the water activities or skateboard, bike, rollerblade through the Ocean Front Walk. There are tons of sidewalk sellers with handcrafted items and artwork for sale. You'll see a group of people playing music and others dancing. Plus, the restaurants near the beach offer a range of cuisines for the tourists; there is a rooftop lounge where couples/friends/family can get the best view of Venice beach sunsets. You can even stroll through the Venice Beach Boardwalk and visit the Muscle Beach Gym; a sight never to be missed.
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
For the adventurous kind, Myrtle beach can be a trip of a lifetime. Any kind of attractions you want, this beach has it. So let's see what it has to offer. Visit the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, Myrtle Waves (water park), Boardway at the Beach (shopping center), Family Kingdom Amusement Park (seaside amusement park), The Carolina Opry (musical show), Medieval Times (Medieval-themed dinner theater), Huntington Beach State Park and Brookgreen Gardens, Myrtle Beach State Park (coastal forest), Pirates Voyage Fun, Feast & Adventure (pirate-themed dinner theater), Freestyle Music Park (musical theme park), Gay Dolphin Gift Cove (a 26,000 sq. ft. gift shop), and so much more.
Glass Beach, Fort Bragg, California
It's true that nature does find its way. The Pacific Ocean was used as a garbage dumping area by the residents of Fort Bragg in the early 20th century, but the Glass Beach has transformed itself today. The thrashing of waves, over many decades, helped the beach clean itself as it would break down all the trash in the water. What was left behind was glass which was then transformed into the small, beautiful, and colorful pieces that we see on the beach. There have been several clean up programs for the Glass Beach in the past as well. Each year, countless tourists visit the beach to marvel the miracle of nature. You can't collect any pieces from the beach park, but you can visit other areas near the park for souvenirs.
Fort Lauderdale Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Fort Lauderdale Beach is more than just a spring break spot for college students. At the beach, you get the chance to windsurf, jet ski, snorkel, scuba dive, deep-sea fish, rollerblade, play volleyball, and go sailing. At the north side, you can also enjoy the day taking a nature hike, canoe trip, picnic along the coast, or go shopping. As for the south side, you'll get to see all the restaurants, beachfront shops, and nightclubs.
Pebble Beach, California
Apart from the actual beach, you can spend the day at the Pebble Beach Equestrian Center. You will take a horseback ride to explore the gorgeous Monterey Peninsula which is above 34 miles long. The trail is beautiful with unbelievable scenery and the marvelous sounds of the waves. Plus, golf lovers can really enjoy themselves here at Pebble Beach. Why, you ask? Well, with eight private and public 18-hole golf courses, who wouldn't!
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
There are several beaches in Cape Cod and to select the one that suits your vacation requirements needs a bit of research. At the Upper Cape Cod beaches, see the Cape Cod Canal and the Monument Beach Marina at the Monument Beach, enjoy the warm water at the Wood Neck Beach, or the Falmouth Heights Beach which overlooks Vineyard Sound and Martha's Vineyard in Falmouth. At the Mid Cape Cod beaches, visit the Sandy Neck Beach which has high sand dunes and crystal-clear water or windsurf at Hyannis Harbor on Kalmus Beach. At the Lower Cape Cod beaches, you will find grassy sand dunes on Breakwater Beach, North Beach which is accessible by boast only, or take a dip in the Bucks Pond Beach (freshwater).
Hamoa Beach, Maui, Hawaii
Hamoa Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Pacific Ocean as it has a gorgeous 30-foot high sea cliff and lush, green vegetation. The water is crystal clear and blue that offers ample chances for swimming, bodysurfing, paddle board surfing, snorkeling, scuba diving, and so much more. The beach has a mix of white-black sand and you get plenty of breathtaking scenic photographs.
Famous National Parks & Hiking Trails
Yellowstone National Park
On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone National Park was established and is approximately 3,468.4 sq. miles in area. The park is primarily located in Wyoming, however some parts cover Montana and Idaho as well. Before you visit the park, it is essential to know about the recreational activities here as there are many lakes, canyons, rivers, and mountain ranges. There are about 9 hotels and lodges in the park where you can stay. Year round, the park can be enjoyed for various reasons. However, the best time would be Spring (March to May) as you get to see babies around the park. At the park, you will see the largest geysers, hiking, camping, bicycling, fly fishing (catch and release only), horseback and llama rides, wildlife viewing, boating, etc. There's so much to do and see, it can be a bit overwhelming. So take your time in researching and make your itinerary.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The park spans the ridgeline of Great Smoky Mountains, which is about 816.28 sq. miles in area; the border between North Carolina and Tennessee. You will find various species of plants, trees, animals, reptiles, birds, fish, and amphibians. There are 2 visitors' centers, Sugarlands Visitors' Center and Oconaluftee Visitor Center, log cabins, churches, barns, and many historical attractions (Cades Cove Historic District, Elkmont Historic District, Oconaluftee Archaeological District, Noah Ogle Place, Roaring Fork Historic District, and many more). You can spend the day hiking through the park, sightseeing, fly fishing, bicycling, horseback riding, water tubing, etc.
Glacier National Park, Montana
Located in Montana, the park is approximately 16,000 sq. miles in area of mountain ranges, lakes, meadows, and forests. The best time to visit the park is during the months of July and August as it is ideal for hiking and climbing in the park, see the Logan Pass, and spot wildlife. September and October months, there is less crowd and you can camp out in the park, but the temperature at nights can be a bit cooler. During winters, you can enjoy the park while snow showing, cross-country skiing, and trekking. You can easily drive through the campgrounds from mid-June to mid-September. The highlights of the park are Going-to-the-Sun Road, Lake McDonald Valley, Logan Pass, North Fork, Two Medicine, Goat, Haunt, Many Glacier, and St. Mary Valley.
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
Covering approximately 1,902 sq. miles of area, this natural wonder of the world can leave anyone speechless due to its sheer size. The South Rim is much more accessible than the North rim, as many tourists come to the park from the Arizona State Route 64. You can choose to take either the South Rim Drive tour (which includes the 8 miles western drive to Hermit's Point, Mohave Point, Powell Memorial, and Hopi Point) or the 25 miles of the eastern portion of Desert View. You can also enjoy the hiking tour which includes the Rim Trail (8 miles) along with the Hermit's Rest (7 miles), or take a private helicopter ride.
Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail
The trail is approximately 1,200 miles long which encompasses the Continental Divide in Montana, the Pacific coast of Washington's Olympic Peninsula, and the northern area of Idaho. If you're looking to hike, mountain bike, or go horseback riding, this trail is ideal. The trail passes through various national parks such as Glacier National Park, Olympic National Forest and Park, Flathead National Forest, Kootenai National Forest, Idaho Panhandle National Forest,
Colville National Forest, Okanogan National Forest, North Cascades National Park, Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Deception Pass State Park, Bayview State Park, Joseph Whidbey State Park, Fort Ebey State Park, Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve, and Fort Casey State Park.
Yosemite National Park, California
Situated in the central-eastern part of California, the Yosemite National Park is a 1,200 sq. miles of gorgeous waterfalls, deep valleys, meadows, sequoias, cliffs, river beds, glaciers, and gorgeous mountains. There are many lodges and campgrounds for an overnight stay in Yosemite. However, they are open and accessible only during the season and are sometimes closed due to harsh conditions. There are several hiking trails, accumulating to over 800 miles of area, ranging from easy strolls to multiple-day trips. The park is open all year long and can be enjoyed for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
Arizona National Scenic Trail, Arizona
The Arizona Trail caters to hikers, joggers, cross-country skiers, mountain bicyclists, and equestrians as it cannot be entered in a motorized vehicle. It is approximately 820 miles wide which covers from Utah to Mexico. The highest point is the San Francisco Peaks which is about 9,600 feet.
Kalalau Trail, Kauai, Hawaii
Not a long trail, just about 11 miles, the Kalalau Trail runs along the Nā Pali Coast on Kauai island. You can hike through the trails, but it is strictly advised for experienced hikers as the trail is quite challenging with various stream crossings, steep climbing, slippery areas near the waterfalls, and falling rocks. If you wish to camp in the park, you can avail a 5-day camping permit. However, once the permit has expired, you have to wait for a month to get another permit.
Tahoe Rim Trail
The 165 miles long Tahoe Rim Trail passes through California and Nevada, and is ideal for hiking, trekking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and skiing. It crosses through 1 state park and 3 national forests. The park doesn't allow motorized vehicles in. The best times to hike in the trail is between the months of July and September. You can visit the trail year-round, however, you should avoid coming during winters as there are chances of severe storms.
Arches National Park, Utah
The park has approximately 2,000 natural stone arches with hundreds of pinnacles, fins, and giant rocks balancing on one another. There are several easy to long trails in the park where visitors can trek, hike, mountain bike, and even camp in. Rock climbing is strictly prohibited in the park. The most famous features of the park are the Balanced Rock, Dark Angel, Wall Arch, Petrified dunes, Double Arch, Devil's Garden, Delicate Arch, Courthouse Towers, Skyline Arch, Fiery Furnace, and many more.
Theme Park & Sightseeing Spots
Almost everyone is aware of Disney World and Disneyland in Orlando and Anaheim, respectively. However, there are many more theme parks across the country which you can visit and enjoy. Apart from the theme parks, there are countless states, cities, and counties for sightseeing. Here's a small list of "must visit" tourist sightseeing destinations around the country.
Times Square, New York City, New York
New York City is huge (no surprise there) and of course, listing only one tourist attraction is unfair. However, it is safe to say that Times Square does attract more visitors each year than any other place; approximately 39 million visitors annually only in 2011. Being the major commercial intersection in Midtown Manhattan, Times Square is a marvel stretched from West 42nd Street to West 47th Street. Apart from the obvious jaw-dropping stature of the intersection, you will find the Times Square Studios, Planet Hollywood, NASDAQ sign, W Hotel, Paramount Hotel, Broadway theater, Crown Plaza, Madame Tussauds Museum, Ripley's Believe It or Not!, Top of the Rock NYC, The Ride NYC, One Times Square (New Year's Eve ball drop), Disney Store, M&M's World, Chevrolet clock, The Hard Rock Cafe, and so much more.
San Diego Zoo and SeaWorld, San Diego, California
San Diego Zoo and San Diego SeaWorld are a little over 7 miles away from one another. It's better to purchase the 3-for1 Pass (adult - US $143 and child - US $113) because that way, you not only get access to the San Diego Zoo, but can also visit San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and SeaWorld San Diego with unlimited entry for 7 days from first use. Or you can purchase the Go San Diego Card (adult - US $199 and child - US $165) to visit San Diego Zoo 1-Day Pass, San Diego Zoo Safari Park Africa Tram Safari Pass, SeaWorld San Diego, Legoland California, Knott's Soak City, USS Midway Aircraft Carrier, Harbor Cruises/Whale Watch, Birch Aquarium, all Balboa Park museums, and many more attractions.
Disney World and Universal Studios, Orlando, Florida
You can purchase the Orlando theme park package (Disney World and Universal Studios Orlando) for US $178 for adults. You can hop between both theme parks as you enjoy the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios (Disney World), and Universal's Islands of Adventure and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Universal Studios). These parks are perfect for visitors of all ages.
American Falls (Niagara Falls), New York
There are three waterfalls, the Niagara Falls( Ontario), the Horseshoe Falls (Ontario and New York State), and the American Falls that together make the Niagara Falls we know. The American Falls is entirely on the U.S. side, in New York, and is approximately 70-110 feet in height. You can view the falls from a steep angle and come quite close to the edge as well. There is a pedestrian bridge where visitors can view the rapids of the Niagara River going upriver from the falls.
Navy Pier, Chicago, Illinois
Navy Pier has become a famous tourist spot as it gives people a chance to spend the day of fun on Lake Michigan. There is an annual outdoor art exhibition at the Gateway Park which allows free entry for visitors, music synchronized fireworks on the lake which can be seen from the dock or on-board a cruise, various rides and attractions (150-foot Navy Pier Ferris Wheel, Musical Carousel, Transporter FX, Wave Swinger, Bike and Roll Chicago, Light Tower ride, Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows, remote control boats, and 18 hole miniature golf course), Landshark Beer Garden, and so much more.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota
The world famous granite sculpture in South Dakota, The Mount Rushmore National Memorial is approximately 60 feet in size. As many of you may know, the sculptures of the heads are of the 4 U.S. presidents - George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. Each year, about 3 million visitors come to the park; especially during the week of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.
Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana
Mardi Gras means the Carnival season. The celebrations begin on or after Epiphany (it's a holiday) and ends one day before Ash Wednesday (first day of Lent). During this season, people from across the country and all over the world come to New Orleans (a popular destination for Mardi Gras) and wear masks, costumes, dance, take part in parades, etc. Although Mardi Gras is quite popular in the United States, it's not celebrated or observed nationally. Apart from Louisiana, the sates of Alabama and Mississippi also observe this season.
Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure, Anaheim, California
One day is not enough to cover the Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure. Just inside Disneyland, you have the Main Street, U.S.A. (Disneyland Railroad, Main Street Cinema, Main Street Vehicles, The Disney Gallery, and Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln), Tomorrowland (Astro Orbitor, Space Mountain, Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, etc.), Fantasyland (Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan's Flight, Mad Tea Party, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, etc.), Frontierland (Fantasmic!, Big Thunder Ranch, Mark Twain Riverboat, etc.), Adventureland (Tarzan's Treehouse, Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden Eye, etc.), New Orleans Square, Micky's Toontown, Critter Country, parades, fireworks, and many more attractions. As for Disney California Adventure, you can visit Buena Vista Street, Paradise Pier, Grizzly Peak, Condor Flats, Pacific Wharf, Hollywood Lane, A Bug's Land, Cars Land, and many more live entertainment.
Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California
The Golden Gate Bridge is 1.7 miles long, 27.4 meters wide, and 227.4 meters high. This suspension bridge holds 6 vehicle lanes along with walkways for pedestrians and bicyclists on either side. There are specific entry times during daytime. So make sure you check the times before you make plans for a visit. You can either drive or choose to walk or take a bicycle ride on the bridge. Apart from viewing the bridge from up close, you can also take loads of pictures of the bridge from the California Coastal Trail.
Las Vegas Strip, Las Vegas, Nevada
This 4.2 mile Las Vegas Strip will leave anyone wanting for more. As the city lights are turned on from evening, the entire Strip just comes to life. With casinos to lure you in and shows to make visitors want to come in to the hotels, there's never a dull moment here. Apart from the paid shows in various hotels, there are several free street shows on the Strip such as the Fountains at Bellagio, the volcano at The Mirage, and the Sirens of TI at Treasure Island. You can either take the free shuttles that operate at several areas on the Strip or choose to walk on the sidewalks. Las Vegas is no place for kids. However, if you are traveling with family, there are certain adult attractions that you'll have to pass on.
Finding a vacation destination is not the toughest thing to do, especially when you're searching for states, cities, or counties across the country. What will take most of your time in research is finalizing a destination. With literally tens of thousands of choices, you really have some work cut out for yourself. Depending on what you want from your holiday, family time, romantic getaway, or fun under the sun, choose a destination and find out exciting deals.
Popular Vacation Spots in Europe
Europe is a home to some of the most beautiful vacation destinations in the world. You'll fall short of time and money to visit all the vacation destinations in Europe, as they are in huge number. It is a continent with abundance in culture, tradition, economy, natural beauty and it reflects modern-day growth and development in its unique style. Know more about the same by reading further.
Although, Europe is the second smallest continent in the world, it comprises nearly 48 countries that are testimony to the cultural diversity of this continent is amazing. It has been a cradle of the mighty Greek and Roman empires. Right from the ancient days of Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Cleopatra, Hannibal, Homer, Spartans, Iliad, the Trojan War and Ulysses, journey to the middle ages of philosophy, theology to the modern times of Renaissance, French Revolution and the world wars, Europe has seen all in its past. Almost all the countries, cities and states in Europe have something unique about their culture and heritage. It is often believed that next to Asian countries, it is in Europe where you'll find innumerable diversity of people and traditions. Vibrant and unending night life, exotic beaches, mesmerizing flora and fauna, excellent infrastructure, superb transportation, luxurious hotels, grand festivals, breath-taking natural wonders, high-tech cities, Europe has everything to offer you!
Vacation Destinations in Europe
Europe travel offers people scope for growth and consistency. Owing to many popular vacation spots in Europe, it is not surprising to get confused. Since there is no end to the long list of travel destinations in Europe, it is good to zero in on some options that you would like to visit. You must thoroughly research before choosing a city in Europe. If any of your friends, relatives of acquaintances have been to Europe, you must consult them for handy tips regarding the Europe travel experience. You can't visit all cities or places in Europe, so plan your travel based upon the time available, your budget and comfort. The idea should be to enjoy the experience and not get lost in the multitude of options. Choose places that you have always wanted to visit.
Amsterdam boasts of being the central hub of European culture. With more than 75 festivals held every year, Amsterdam's rich cultural heritage is a great aspect of this city. Being the capital, financial and cultural city of Netherlands, Amsterdam has the unique blend of traditional beauty and present day growth. The headquarters of 7 fortune 500 companies are situated in Amsterdam. The 17th century canals in this city have been added to the UNESCO world heritage site. Some of the must visit places in Amsterdam include the historic canals, the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, Stedelijk Museum, Hermitage Amsterdam and the Anne Frank House. Amsterdam is liberal and free in its own style. It is also world-wide known for its red light districts and because of the cannabis coffee shops, wherein, very minute quantities of cannabis products are sold in licensed coffee shops!! So when you visit this city, be ready to accept many aspects of Amsterdam's wholly liberal and tolerant attitude, as this city is upfront with everything that life offers!
It is a mesmerizing place to be, especially if you have read and studied about history of oldest cities in the world. The transformation of Athens from a state of arts, learning and philosophy in its earliest years to the modern-days cosmopolitan metropolis leading in financial, industrial and cultural aspects of Greece has been phenomenal. This capital city of Greece is believed to be the place where great philosophers like Plato and Aristotle established their academies. It is also famous for introducing the world to the concept of democracy. It was in Athens where the first Olympic games was organized in 1886. Classical architecture and ancient monuments are still seen in this city continuing the rich legacy of Greeks. The Acropolis of Athens and the Daphni Monastery are two monuments that have been included in the UNESCO world heritage list. Athens University, the National Library of Greece, Academy of Athens, Hellenic Parliament, National Archeological Museum and numerous varieties of Roman, Byzantine monuments are some other famous attractions in Athens.
Gaudi architecture is one of the most profound arts in the world and Barcelona is a home to most of them. Millions of tourists visit Barcelona every year to enjoy all that this magnificent city has to offer. The most famous, the Sagrada Família, a UNESCO world heritage site, is by far one of the masterpieces in Roman Catholic church architecture. Designed by the Antoni Gaudi, this incomplete church is still under construction and is believed to be completed by 2026!! Barcelona is more than a single city as cultures and traditions of various European cities are embedded in it. Besides Gothic architecture, there is a lot to enjoy in Barcelona with vibrant night life full of music, theater shows and concerts. With many parks, museums, beaches and excellent entertainment in the form of media and sports, Barcelona is a top destination to visit.
Venice is a city that defines art, beauty, music and romance. People from all across the globe visit Venice owing to its magnificent landscape, cultural richness, musical grandeur and beautiful churches. It has been constantly ranked amongst the top 10 European destinations in the world. Since the 18th century, it has emerged as a major tourist attraction. Some of the must see places in Venice include the Grand Canal, Basilica di San Marco, Rialto Bridge, The Doge's Palace, Islands of the Lagoon in Murano and Burano and Lido. Venice is an extremely small city and is densely concentrated. One of the phenomenal facts about Venice is that it is situated on 117 different islands and is connected by nearly 150 canals and nearly 400 bridges! Since a large number of couples flock this city during the peak seasons like Valentine's day month, it is for sure, an expensive city. There is always a high demand of accommodations in hotels facing the grand canal area as it is perceived to be the most beautiful site in Venice.
The rich history of Istanbul makes it one of the most visited cities in Turkey. It is believed that Istanbul was once the vibrant capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. Major attractions in Istanbul include ancient and modern-day mosques, museums and world-class shopping center. The Sultan Ahmed Mosque (also known as the "Blue Mosque") is the most popular tourist attraction in Istanbul. Besides the Blue Mosque, numerous other places to visit in Istanbul are Hagia Sophia, the Topkapý Palace, the Basilica Cistern, the Dolmabahçe Palace, the Galata Tower, the Grand Bazaar, the Spice Bazaar, and the Pera Palace Hotel. In the past couple of years, Istanbul has become world famous for establishing some of the largest shopping malls in Europe and in the world. Cevahir Mall in Şişli district of Istanbul is the Europe's largest shopping center and the world's six largest mall. Since tourism is an important aspect of economy, there are thousands of hotels to accommodate visitors from all corners of the world.
The capital city of Sweden, Stockholm expanded from a fortress of the 13th century to present day metropolis. It is a city that has a remarkable beauty with blend of the old and the new cultures. There is a lot to explore about Stockholm's rich past and legacy. To do so, you must not forget to visit some of the most notable tourist attractions in this city, namely, the Gamla Stan, that is one of the oldest parts of Stockholm. Visiting the narrow streets of Gamla Stan will be like a live walk through the history of past couple of centuries. Oldest buildings and architecture is what makes Gamla Stan a remarkable place in Stockholm. Some other places to visit in Stockholm include the waterways, national museum, Skansen and the beautiful archipelago. Stockholm is a beautiful city and it is also the financial center of Sweden. Hosts of IT and insurance companies provide employment to thousands of people making it a city of service oriented people. Sweden is a great and peaceful place to spend a vacation owing to its well managed parks, tree-lined roads and pleasant water bodies.
This beautiful, lush green capital city of Ireland is a heaven's abode particularly due to its greenery. No other city in Europe has more green spaces per square kilometer than Dublin! Old monuments and historical buildings besides hosts of night long events make a trip to Dublin really special. You can visit the Custom House, which is an incredible piece of architecture dating back to 18th century. Besides that, you can also go for sight seeing of The G.P.O., The Four Courts and the Dublin Castle that are the prime administrative buildings in Dublin. Moreover, you must also visit the St. Patricks Cathedral, Christ Church Cathedral, Ha'penny Bridge, St.Stephens Green, Trinity College, The Dublin Spire and The Guinness Storehouse. These are some of the remarkable and must visit places in this Irish city.
Paris, the capital city of France is a dream city for most of us. It is the most visited city in the world with nearly 30 million tourists coming to this most vibrant city every year. Every square inch of Paris has a rich past and history. Given the scope and extent of places to visit in Paris, it is advisable to short list few must visit places so that you don't have to rush in this crowded city. Some of the most popular tourist attractions in Paris are The Louvre Art Gallery, Arc de Triomphe, The Conciergerie, The Eiffel Tower, Centre Pompidou, Notre Dame de Paris and Cite des Sciences at de l'Industrie. Besides these places, be it the day life or night life, Paris is always buzzing with numerous events in the media and fashion industry. The party hardly stops in Paris! If you really want to visit a place that is an amalgam of several cultures and represents the peak of modern-day development, Paris is the best option for you.
Geneva is one of the top 10 cities when it comes to high quality of living. It is a global city with headquarters of most of the international organizations like the UN and the Red Cross. It is also one of the top 5 expensive cities in the world owing to the presence of major financial and international organizations in this country. In your visit to Geneva, you can hardly miss the beauty of Lake Geneva, as most of the Geneva lives around this lake. Surrounded by beautiful world-class gardens and the most famous Jet d'eau, a 140 meter tall fountain, Geneva lake is a peaceful place to enjoy the beauty of castles and monuments alongside the lake. Those interested in adventure sports can indulge in the ura Mountains near St.-Cergues, 45 min from Geneva. The Red Cross Museum and Geneva's Tram are some awesome places visiting which will give you deep insights about the past of Geneva and Europe, besides giving you information about the herculean works done by the Red Cross since its inception. Along with these, a ride on a bike or even a walk through the historic villages will mesmerize you owing to the abundant vineyards in the old villages. Moreover, plenty of sports facilities right from swimming to golf or tennis and numerous entertainment options at night make Geneva a truly remarkable place to visit.
Copenhagen is world famous for its amazing infrastructure and environmental friendly measures. Nearly 36% of the citizens in this capital city of Denmark commute to their work by a bicycle. Copenhagen is noted for its worlds oldest amusement park, Tivoli gardens. In the garden, there are plenty of fun filled and crazy activities you can enjoy with your family. Other tourist attractions that are very popular in Copenhagen are the Kronberg Castle, Strøget, The Little Mermaid, Round Tower and Amalienborg. It is also a home to Nokia's largest research center outside Finland. It boasts of being a major IT city in Denmark. While visiting Denmark, make sure your budget is at peak, because it is rated to be one of the most expensive cities in Europe.
When you're planning to visit the above mentioned holiday destinations in Europe, ensure that you have planned in advance about your budget and other resources. These popular vacation spots in Europe are definitely going to give you everlasting memories. Have fun and enjoy every moment of your vacation.
Best Winter Destinations in Europe
Europe, which is culturally rich continent, has countless destinations for explore this winter. In Europe, vacation destinations can be divided into warm and cold owing to fact that the continent spans from the waters of the Mediterranean to the ice of the Arctic.
Broadly speaking, you can choose to travel to warm and cold locations in Europe. The warm locations include the nations near the Mediterranean sea, southern nations of the peninsula. The cold regions include the alpine regions and the nations to the north.
Southern Portugal is one of the warmest winter destinations in Europe, and has a heavenly cool cum warm climate in most of the seasons. The Algarve, which can be translated as 'the west' is a haven for people who love food, beaches, bars, casinos and a warm climate. The Algarve region has several coastal towns and cities, with Faro and the other prominent towns and cities which include, Albufeira, Lagoa, Lagos, Loulé, Olhão, Portimão, Quarteira, Silves, Tavira, and Vila Real de Santo António. The coastlines are dotted with limestone caves and scenic locations on sea-side cliffs. Rich food, sea food, local drinks and cuisine are some other attractions. Historic architecture and a very rich culture can also be observed. Some of the best beaches in Europe, nice resorts and low-cost of being a tourist makes this region a great tourist attraction. Southern Portugal and Spain provide some very good cheap winter destinations in Europe, if you are traveling on a tight budget.
The climate in Italy is not exactly suitable to have a tan yet the rich culture and history of Italy tends to attract phenomenal visitors from across the world. Rome, Venice, Vatican, Milan and Florence are some of the many cities that remind us of the great architecture of the Renaissance and the Middle ages. The Romans, were great planners, well even planned some of the nation's future tourism economy when they laid the foundations of some of great buildings such as Colosseum, Forum and Pantheon. It would also be a shame to miss the Trevi fountain and of course the St Peter's Basilica in Vatican, St Mark's Basilica, St Mark's Square and the Leaning tower of Pisa. If you are a literature enthusiast, there are several towns and cities which hosted some of greatest stories and plays, such as Verona which hosted the famous love story Romeo and Juliet. Italian cuisine is of course as always fantastic, and in cities such as Milan and Rome, you can find the best restaurants to entertain your taste buds.
Other warm climate locations include, Sicily, Spain and parts of the Aegean regions, are always amongst the best winter destinations in Europe. Temperate climate is also found in several central European nations such as Germany, France and Austria, which make them the perfect winter vacation destinations. Most of the time of the year you will have a very warm and pleasant climate in such regions.
Switzerland has some of the finest winter vacation spots in Europe, as of course, it is considered to be the most beautiful region on earth. Within Switzerland, there are countless ski resorts as well as mountain lodges to visit. In winter, Switzerland mountains are also an attractive spot for ice climbers and mountaineers. If you love snow sports then this is the place for you. Further up Germany and its culture is also a fascinating locations in Bavaria and the Rhine region. In fact some people visit these regions only to have a look at some of the best castles that were built this region. Burg Eltz, Schloss Neuschwanstein, the Wartburg and the Marksburg are some of the most beautiful castles in Germany. Fascinating cuisine, fine wine, German beer and a warm culture will leave you spell-bound.
For even colder climates, Ireland and Scotland are probably the best vacation spots in Europe. The Scottish land is especially very beautiful in the winters and there several locations where you can go, including, Edinburgh, Glasgow and the best monument of the region, the Wallace monument. If you are a history enthusiast, then you may as well, visit Skara Brae, a neolithic settlement found in Scotland. In Ireland, the Trim castle, Killarney National Park, Brú na Bóinne, Skellig Michael and the Giants Causeway, are some of the fascinating destination, some of them being heritage sites.
Well, apart from these offbeat locations, there are also conventional locations in Europe such as Paris, London, Barcelona Stockholm (Sweden), Berlin, etc, not to mention the top ten European cities. Overall, may it be a warm climate or a cold climate, European vacations offer a lot of fascinating locations and destinations, which are culturally and historically significant and have cuisines which will trouble us in our dreams after the vacation.
Europe is known for its culture. The languages spoken in Europe can be divided into three language families, namely Romance languages (derived from Latin), Germanic languages and Slavic languages. Other than the languages belonging to these three main types, there are a number of other languages that are spoken in Europe. Other than Austria and Yugoslavia, all countries in Europe have a language named after the country name. German is the official language of Austria, whereas Serbo-Croatian is the language of Yugoslavia.
Christianity is the main religion of the continent. There are three main types of churches in Europe, namely Catholics, Protestants and Eastern Orthodox churches. There are some parts of Europe, where Islam is practiced predominantly. The other religions which are practiced include Buddhism, Judaism and Hinduism. However, there is a growing trend of people becoming irreligious, atheistic and agnostic observed in Europe.
Given the diversity in the continent, every state has its own cuisine, although, some of the cuisines are similar to one another. The cuisines can largely be divided into Eastern European, Northern European, Southern European, Western European. This differentiation has been made on geographical basis.
Interesting Facts about Europe
1. An interesting fact about the European continent is that it starts from North America to end at North America again, due to the presence of countries like Iceland and Russia in the continent.
2. For the past 20 years, the population of Europe has been static, with the birth and death rates being constant.
3. Vatican City State has been declared as a world heritage site by UNESCO. It is the only 'country' in the world, which has been declared so.
4. Like Japan is termed as the 'Land of the Rising Sun', Norway in Europe is called the 'Land of the Midnight Sun'.
5. In the literal sense of the words, there is no desert in Europe.
6. There are three time zones in Europe, namely Eastern European Timezone, Western European Timezone and Central European Timezone.
7. One of the facts on Europe is that , there exists a common currency in 12 nations of the European continent called Euro, which was introduced in 2002. In 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011 more countries came under the single currency banner.
8. The Statue of Liberty was designed by a French, who went with the name Frédéric Bartholdi and it was another French, Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, who built the statue in France before it was shipped to America.
9. The only metropolitan area, which is a part of two continents is Istanbul, as it is located on the Bosphorus Strait, which is a part of Europe as well as Asia. Therefore, it is often said, "if you want to have lunch in Europe and dinner in Asia, then you have to be in Istanbul".
10. An interesting fact about Europe is that there are three countries in Europe, whose names start with the alphabet 'I', namely Iceland, Italy and Ireland.
11. You will be astonished to know, that Germany has as many as 9 neighbors, namely Switzerland, Netherlands, Poland, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, Austria, Belgium and Czech Republic.