Is Cyprus The Perfect Mediterranean Wedding Destination?

Cyprus is a fantastic holiday destination and has a reputation for its popularity among Britons. It’s a top choice for UK residents looking to move to the Mediterranean after retirement, and is widely known for its beautiful scenery paired with great tourist-friendly resorts. Over the last few years, Cyprus has also grown in popularity as a dream wedding destination, with couples travelling from all over the world to host their marriage ceremony and celebrations there.

There are so many reasons why Cyprus is pretty much unbeatable as a destination wedding hotspot. The large population of former UK residents there and the ever-growing interest in destination weddings on the island make it very easy to find fantastic wedding planners to help organise your big day, especially when it comes to booking a venue. Beach and hotel weddings are the de facto choice for young couples, but there are also many wedding chapels and churches available. A great wedding coordinator can arrange exactly what you need, and they’re easy to come by on the island. Whether it’s a civil ceremony in a hotel or a church wedding near the beach, getting married in Cyprus can be a breeze with the right team.

For another thing, there’s the sheer beauty of the place. It’s a Mediterranean island surrounded by spectacular coastlines, blue waters and golden beaches. What more could you ask for in a wedding destination? Well, how about being the on the Island of Love? That’s exactly what you’ll get here, as the Greek goddess of love Aphrodite was said to have first walked the Earth right here. You can actually have your wedding ceremony on the very beach where she rose out of the sea, according to legend.

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The best small villages around the world

colombia

A lot of people often travel to the cities, but did you know there are also many small town villages all over the world that are also worth the visit? Visiting a small town is great to see and have a feel of the authenticity of the country’s culture. Often the small villages have a more traditional feel compared to the city. No matter where you are planning to travel, whether its Asia, Europe or America, don’t forget to check out some of their beautiful small town villages. We’ve listed some of the best towns in the world below.

kawagoe

Kawagoe, Japan

Kawagoe is known for having kept the old structures and buildings in Japan that were built back in 1638. It’s the only town in Japan that has some of the oldest buildings in the country. Many tourists will visit the town to see the oldest clock tower that was also rebuilt and known as Toki no Kane which is still intact and still being used in specific hours. Kawagoe is only 60 minutes away from Tokyo by train which isn’t too far to travel to.

Penestanan, Indonesia

Penestanan is home to some of the most famous painters in India. The town is also named as ‘Artists Village’ in India. The village is surrounded by a variety of traditional villas, landmarks and natural farming. It’s the perfect area where you can get away from the busy life of the city and enjoy the natural surroundings and relaxing atmosphere of Penestanan. You will find some cafes, stalls and large rice fields all around. It is the perfect countryside of India.

Guatape, Colombia

The small village called Guatape in Colombia is filled with bright and colourful buildings that surround the whole village. No matter where you go around the town, you will find some artistic paint and bright colours of almost everything! Their public motor transport are even painted with eye-popping colours! It’s a lively village that’s worth seeing.

Kyoto Vegan and Vegetarian Cuisines

kyoto

Kyoto is situated in Japan and is known for its historic destination. Many travellers all around the world visit Kyoto to see its remarkable temples, museums and shrines that represents Buddhism. As Kyoto is one of the main homes for Buddhist, many local restaurants are are catering vegetarian meals mainly because Buddhists are mostly vegetarian.

vegetarian

Their main popular vegetarian dish is called Shoji ryori which is a mix of vegetables tofu and plants. You will see the dish is served in almost every restaurant in town. Moreover, Kyoto is known to have over 100 vegetarian restaurants. It’s the perfect place for a vegan who is looking for more varieties of vegan dishes. Although most of the vegetarian is traditional cuisines, you can also find a variety of other vegan dishes from Italy and France.

Vegan restaurants and cafe

The Morpho Cafe is one of the most popular cafes in Kyoto. They serve fresh dish which mainly includes vegetables, salad and tofus. Their hot drinks and cold drinks are all served with soya milk which is perfect for vegan and vegetarians. The atmosphere of the cafe has a very cool vibe and they are also known for serving unique dishes that include tofu burgers and vegan curry.

Macrobiotics Prunus

The restaurant serves a vegan-macrobiotic restaurant which means all their dishes doesn’t have any animal ingredients. The owner named Yuka highly believes about the importance of eating fresh vegan foods for a healthier body. Yuka welcomes all travellers around the world and loves to chat with anyone about her dishes.

Fortune Garden Kyoto

The fortune garden provides an exquisite food service from start to finish. Their main menus consist of vegetarian French dishes. They also provide a test sample for some of their dishes to all their customers. Their venue has also a traditional Japanese yet modern vibe.

Places to see in Laos

buddha

Laos is the capital of Vientiane which is situated in Asia. Like many other places in Asia, Laos offers many historical and cultural areas which are visited by many travellers around the world. So if you happen to stop by in Laos or are planning to visit the city, why not check out our recommendations below.

Buddha Park

Buddha Park is filled with plenty of Buddha statues. It is one of the biggest parks in Laos as it has over 200 statues of Buddhas! So if you’re a big fan of Buddhism, you will definitely wouldn’t want to miss out. It’s a magnificent scenery for travellers who also love to take photographs and capture all the amazing sculptures and statues of Buddhas.

Night Market

If you have been around Asia, then you’re aware of the night markets. The whole places come alive at night with a variety of stalls that offers traditional foods and different kinds of goods. You can find almost anything by strolling around the night market. The market is located in Mekong River.

Wat That Luang

The Wat That Luang is a national monument of Laos. The building also symbolises the Buddhist religion. It is filled with golden temples and various sculptures of Buddha and surrounded by a stunning garden.

Mekong River

The Mekong River is perfect for any travellers that love the natural surroundings. You can walk alongside the river and enjoy the scenery. There are also a couple of cafes and stalls where you can have a snack or simply shop around.

Patuxai

The Patuxai is a war monument that resembles the Arc de Triomphe in France. Patuxai is the remembrance of those who fought against the French back in the war. You can also walk to the top of the monument and enjoy the beautiful panoramic view of Laos.

The Best European Countries For Road Trips

Europe is a fantastic, varied continent for exploring by road, so it’s no surprise that many people love to forget paying for expensive flights or trains and simply drive themselves around. This way, you get full control over your route and you can explore everything at your own pace, plus there’s almost no place on the continent you can’t reach by road (once you cross the English Channel, of course).

So what kind of trip are you looking for? Europe has everything, from rocky coastlines to sandy beaches, lush countryside to busy cities. Perhaps you’d like to see as much variation as possible? But in any case, you will need to plan a smart route. Here are some of the best countries for exploring by road, which might make your shortlist.

France – Pretty much the easiest continental country for UK residents to explore by road, France is just a short ferry journey away. Just remember to switch sides of the road when you arrive, and you’ll be able to explore whatever you like. Take a tour of the countryside in search of the finest French vineyards, drive up to some of the world’s favourite ski resorts, or take a tour of the glamorous holiday hotspots in the south.

Italy – With several famous, historic cities to visit, each packed with attractions both ancient and modern, Italy offers a great selection of man-made wonders. Its natural landscape is equally beautiful, though, varying from the snowy slopes in the north to the surprisingly green coastlines further south. Travelling by car is an ideal way to see it all.

Portugal – With a surprising history that most people know little of, Portugal has a huge amount to offer if you choose to explore it by road. Medieval wars, devastating earthquakes and the waves of the Atlantic Ocean have shaped both this country’s history and its geography. Beautiful architecture, delicious food and a friendly culture are all benefits of Portugal which you can experience for yourself on a road trip.

Britain – Of course, one option for Brits is to stay at home and enjoy everything the UK has to offer. What could be easier? Take a road trip to a part of the country you’ve never really seen, and find out what you’ve been missing all these years. You might be surprised how much natural beauty we really have, and there are many underrated towns and cities to visit across the country too.

The Most Impressive Palaces & Castles In Europe

Europe is famed for its fascinating and varied history, spanning a huge period of time and leaving behind many physical reminders of ages gone by. Many of these include grand castles, palaces and royal buildings which are dotted throughout most countries on the continent. Visiting all of them may be almost impossible, but here are just a few of the best places to see.

Neuschwanstein Castle – Germany

Bearing a striking resemblance to the classic Disney castle, this fairytale royal home is one of Europe’s most iconic and it would seem wrong to start our list with anything else. Dominating the landscape from its raised pedestal in the Bavarian forest, Neuschwanstein welcomes nearly 1.5 million tourists every year.

Château de Chambord – France

Incredibly, this extravagant castle was only constructed as a symbol of power, and was used as an elaborate show home but not properly lived in by its owner, François I, for more than a few days in total. The king’s grand design was completed in 1519, and is one of only a few French palaces which remains almost entirely the same today.

Palace of Pena – Portugal

Alongside the famous ruins of Sintra, not far from the capital of Lisbon, this impressive and colourful Portuguese palace dates from the 19th century. Although the building itself is truly unique and inspiring, the grounds were designed to be almost equally impressive, boasting hundreds of different types of trees.

Eltz Castle – Germany

The Germans really love their fairytale-inspired castles, and this beautiful example has sat in the heart of Eltz Forest for close to 900 years. Its wonderful blue roof tiles and timber-framed towers are immaculately maintained, so they look just as impressive as they would have in the Middle Ages.

Windsor Castle – England

As British castles and palaces go, you may find yourself somewhat spoilt for choice, with impressive royal homes from across the centuries dotted throughout the country. However, one of the most immaculate and impressive examples is Windsor Castle, which holds the impressive record for being both the oldest and the largest castle in the world to still serve as a reigning monarch’s official home. When The Queen isn’t at home, however, part of the castle is open to the public and is one of the finest examples in Europe.

Why Family Holidays Are Actually The Best Kind

Many parents love the idea of a romantic getaway away from the kids, or even a trip alone after a particularly exhausting period of being around family-non stop. It’s not always practical to do this, but it seem the vast majority are no longer despairing.

In fact, there’s never been a better time to enjoy your family holiday to the fullest and really enjoy some quality time as a group. Here are the reasons why you might find that enjoying a trip with the whole family is actually the best decision you could make.

Travel isn’t so pricey

In the past, the only way to keep transport costs down was to drive around in a car, spending every waking moment together in a confined space. No wonder this could sometimes be a recipe for disaster, and less than appealing for both parents and kids.

Now, it’s much easier to get cheap flights to European holiday destinations, and even many countries much further away. This means the options available to larger families on a budget are a lot more open.

Accommodation is better

Families are now catered for much better in most hotels and apartments. Adjoining rooms are easier to find, and you won’t be limited to the most basic, cramped suites if you’re willing to pay a little more. In fact, larger rooms often give you better value for money than simple double rooms. Services are usually available to look after and entertain younger children, too, and standards for these have improved over the years.

It’s easy to keep kids entertained

Technology today means it’s way easier to keep your kids happy on a long journey, and even if they lose interest for a while when you’re there. Handheld devices can provide music, video, reading material, games and contact with other friends and family so nobody needs to be bored, and this takes some of the pressure off the parents.

It’s not only the journey time which has been made easier than it used to be for kids, though. Most tourist destinations now realise the value of appealing to children more than ever, since this appeals to parents by extension and keeps their attractions going. Even museums, restaurants and other grown-up places tend to cater to children much more than they used to, even just ten years ago.

Quality time for family bonding

In today’s modern lifestyle, even though a few advancements have made family holidays easier, those same factors can limit the quality time we spend interacting with our closest family members in day to day life.

A family holiday with less stress is the key to enjoying each other’s company a lot more, so hopefully your family will be able to strike the right balance here. It’s important that parents and kids all get to bond with each other while they experience brand new things and enjoy their leisure activities, so take advantage of the chance while you can.

Where To Experience A Brand New Culture This Spring

We all have different reasons for wanting to travel, but it’s a natural human instinct whatever way you look at it. Some of us, for example, want to learn more about other people’s cultures and simply experience something completely different to their day-to-day lives. If this sounds like you, read on to discover some of the amazing places that are perfect for visiting during the spring time.

Celebrate New Year in Thailand

Although Thailand is already very hot at this time of year, that might not bother you if you love warmer climates and your sense of adventure won’t be dampened by the heat. If you venture further from the popular hub of Bangkok, you will most likely discover a lot more of the local culture in this beautiful country.

The great thing about this time of year, whether you’re in the capital or not, is that Thai New Year is celebrated in the middle of April. Due to the hot weather, a traditional public celebration will usually be centred around a huge water fight, so you can cool off while literally soaking up another country’s vibrant culture.

See the iconic sights in Rome

The weather is absolutely perfect in Italy during the run-up to summer, if you prefer things a little cooler than the likes of Thailand. Quite a lot of walking will probably be involved around the centre of Rome, so you won’t want to get too hot and bothered. The main sites are mostly within walking distance, but this could take you some time.

A few days is enough to wander around the partially-ruined Colosseum, visit Vatican City and experience the hugely popular Trevi Fountain for yourself. If you take the time to read and listen as you go, you will probably learn a huge amount of history from this European cultural capital.

Explore the hidden secrets of Jordan

This underrated destination is located close to the most western edge of Asia, and has more in common with Egypt than you might realise. It has a wide array of fascinating ancient ruins to explore, with incredible palaces carved into canyons which are best explored on the back of a camel.

Unlike Egypt, however, a large amount of Jordan is covered with lush, green nature including wild flowers and fruit trees. This is especially true during the spring, making it the ideal time to visit before the much hotter summer months. Overall, it’s a place not to be missed, and the rich culture here may well surprise you if you don’t have much knowledge of the country.

Common European Tourism Mistakes to Avoid

If your European holiday is still in the planning stages, it’s the ideal time to sort out ways of saving money and planning for potential situations where things haven’t gone to plan. Just because circumstances are unforeseen, it doesn’t mean you can’t have some sort of knowledge and backup plan prepared in advance. There are plenty of stories out there which should give you a general idea of the possible problems you’ll face as a tourist and the most well-known pitfalls to dodge. Some of those include the following…

Wrong

1) Taking on too much

If you haven’t been to somewhere before (and perhaps you think you may only go once in your lifetime), it can sound like a good idea to cram in as many activities as possible. However, seeing everything in a short space of time will make everyone rush by in a costly blur at best, and if you’re not used to travelling there’s a high chance you’ll also be exhausted quickly. Schedule some downtime and you will enjoy everything more, even if you have to cut something impractical from your plans.

bags travel

2) Renting a car unnecessarily

Most European cities are surprisingly easy to get around, if you haven’t learned this for yourself. People who are used to driving everywhere may find it hard to adjust, especially those coming from America where many urban areas are on a larger scale. Generally things in Europe are simply more compact and there is little space for traffic, so everything is accessible by walking or local transport. If you rent a car, especially in a historic city, the chances are you won’t get to use it enough to make it worthwhile.

rent a car

3) Booking the first hotel that appears

Using a supposedly impartial comparison site to find your hotel will not always give you unbiased results. Paid listings can be confusing and make it look like you’re getting a good deal when it’s actually on the expensive side. Spend some time looking through the available options and focus more on the reviews for a place than where it appears in search results.

hotel booking

4) Staying in an inconvenient place

Whilst it is good to save on hotel spending as we have established above, sometimes when you arrive you’ll wish you paid just a little more to be closer to the main attractions. If you have to spend time and money travelling to and from your hotel on the outskirts of your destination, you have not really saved any money at all.

 

The Cheapest Way To Use Your Phone While Travelling Europe

Generally speaking, it’s easier than you may think to use your mobile phone while travelling round Europe without racking up huge bills. How exactly you go about this will depend on the specific offers available at the time, and the country you are living in currently, but overall it shouldn’t be difficult to work out how to save money and still make and receive calls, and even use your data connection to access the internet. Here’s how it works.

Save phone costs

If you’re in the UK…

For UK residents, many phone providers will currently let you travel around Europe at absolutely no extra cost! For example, Three now offer data roaming with no fees or price hikes at all, so you can benefit from the same low cost that you pay at home from anywhere in Europe. On some contracts you simple have to inform your carrier that you are going to a different country, and they will check that your phone can work there temporarily. Sometimes you may have to pay higher prices, if you are on a PAYG plan or with certain providers including giffgaff.

If you’re in the US or elsewhere…

It’s not so easy for tourists from outside of Europe to use their phones in European countries, but it’s also not that complicated to set up. You have a few options to choose from.

Mobile typing

Firstly, you might simply commit to not using your phone much, and inconvenience yourself slightly rather than have the hassle of coming up with a dedicated plan. If you’re willing to keep your phone off or on “flight mode” for the entire duration of the trip this may be OK, but for many of us that’s not ideal. Since the costs of spontaneously using your phone abroad with no pre-planning can be fairly high, it’s best to consider another option.

You might decide to buy an international package from your current provider. This would be a temporary package that could include calls, texts and/or data to browse the internet. You can often get them as a one-off add-on that’s easy to setup, and it could work out at a good price if you plan to use your phone a lot. However, you could waste money if you don’t need to use as much as you buy.

phone wifi

The cheapest way to use your phone abroad, and probably the best for most people, is actually to wait until you get to your destination and buy a SIM card from a shop. This will work if you buy a card on the same network you usually use, or if your phone is unlocked you can go for any provider. You just have to insert it into your phone and then you can start using it n whatever local plan is the cheapest. This means since you’re paying prices meant for locals, you can get better deals in general. This option might require some extra research but it’s really the ideal way to be cost effective with this aspect of your holiday spending.

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