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Prepare your money matters before embarking on a long-term international trip. Travelers, especially travelers with children, need to have their bank accounts and budgets sorted before getting on a plane or boat.

Manage Your Money While Traveling Long-Term

Manage Your Money While Traveling Long-Term

Planning in advance will save you from money woes while you’re in the middle of enjoying your vacation or stuck in another country without access to your bank.

Get the Right Bank Account

Even if you prefer to use physical currency when out of the country, you’ll face moments when you need to pull out your debit or credit card. When that occasion happens, you want to know that you won’t face exorbitant fees for using your card internationally. Seek out a bank account without international withdrawal fees. Some of the best accounts will remit ATM service charges.

Look for Banking Apps and Savings Links

Your bank account needs more features than simply low or no international fees. One major feature is a mobile app or at least an internet banking option. With this option, you can check your funds while you’re traveling.

If you’re unfamiliar with the local currency and exchange rate, checking your bank account will give you your spending in dollars. You also want a link between your checking and savings accounts. If you run into unexpected expenses while traveling, the savings account link is indispensable.

Set Up Auto Payments

Asking yourself to remember to pay the bills from your long-term vacation is asking too much. To keep any bills from being delinquent and affecting your credit score, set up auto payments through your service providers. Many cable, electricity, and utility providers have auto-debit options, so connect your accounts and set up automatic payments before you go. You’ll thank yourself when you don’t have to fear coming home to no lights and no air conditioning because you forgot to pay the electric bill.

Plan for Emergencies

You have someone watching your house and your car, right? If something happens, make sure that person is able to handle any issues. Leave secure checks with a friend or family members in case an emergency happens at home. If a pipe bursts, you don’t want to wait for funds to transfer between time zones to pay the plumber.

Shop Local Currency Before You Leave

Before you go, research getting the local currency in the countries where you’ll be traveling. Chances are you can exchange at least some currency at home for a lower rate than you could abroad. Plus, once you arrive at your destination, that currency will already be available to you. At home, you can look for the best rate before exchanging, since different outlets will offer slightly different rates. Abroad, you may be stuck with the nearest currency exchange, which could impale you with terrible exchange rates.

Plan for more expenses than you think you’ll incur; budget extra for what you can’t foresee. Planning your travel finances does not need to be complicated. The goal is to make money matters simple once you’re on your journeys. When you take time to set up the right accounts beforehand, you’ll be fine during your travels.

Merken

Taking a trip with your family is a wonderful way to bond and create special memories. You can use the time away to really understand what your kids love and dream about, and find ways to help them achieve their goals. Still, if you want your family vacation to be successful, you’ll simply have to plan ahead. You’ll have to come up with activities that every family member is going to enjoy.

 

Turn Your Family Vacation into a Real Adventure

Turn Your Family Vacation into a Real Adventure

That said, we’ve come up with a list of five things you can do that are going to turn your family vacation into a real adventure.

Spend time in nature

Spending time in nature helps kids build confidence, teaches them responsibility, and gets them moving. Therefore, including some nature adventures in your next family vacation seems like a great idea. No matter what place you’ll be visiting, you should be able to set aside some of your kids’ time for outdoor play. Of course, visiting lakes, canyons and other nature’s wonders is always an option. Just bear in mind that you have to ensure your kids have fun all the time. For example, if you’re visiting a lake, you can promise you’ll teach them how to skip rocks or let them take their own photos with your camera. There are tons of other fun activities you can do with your kids outside, such as treasure hunting or collecting things like rocks or shells. You can even encourage them to collect rocks every time you travel and toss them in jars which represent each of the places you’ve been to. Also, it’s recommended that you don’t overload your kids with the information about the spot you’re visiting, since all they’ll want to do is play and have fun.

Hit a local beach

Visiting the beach with your family is always guaranteed to be fun. And if the destination you’ve travelled to is close to a beach, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t spend a whole day swimming and making sandcastles with your little ones. Just bear in mind that planning a day on a beach with your kids is an equivalent of planning a two-week trip with just your spouse. You’ll have to make sure there’s enough sunscreen for everyone and remind your kids to apply it from time to time. Besides remembering to pack sunscreen, you’ll also have to do a food prep and come up with a strategy that will include swimming, playing, and resting. It’s recommended that you bring at least one washable lovely for when your kids get tired of swimming and building sandcastles (and they will). That way, they’ll have something to rest on or even take a quick nap on. You might also want to stock up on shopping bags before you hit the beach, since there will always be plenty of things your kids will want to bring home.

Learn about culture

Even though kids will always want to play and have fun, rather than sightseeing, there are ways to make them interested in learning about local culture and visiting popular spots. First of all, you should pull out a map or use Google and show find all the places you’re going to visit. Ask the kids to estimate for how long you’ll travel and what you’ll be able to see once you’re there. That way, you’ll get them all pumped up about the vacation, which means they’ll be more ready to learn about the local culture and actually visit all the popular spots. If you’ll be going to a museum or an old castle, make sure you do your homework since your kids will never stop asking questions about the things they get to see there. Just bear in mind that you should speak kids’ language when talking about art and history. It’s also a good idea to talk to locals about museums and events that kids might find interesting.

Go shopping

This is something your kids are guaranteed to love, especially if there are any big toy stores at the place you’re visiting. You can get ready for shopping with your kids even before you hit the road and look up stores online and find the ones your kids might find interesting. Just bear in mind that kids can get overexcited when visiting toy stores and forget about their needs. This means it’ll be up to you to make sure they’re not hungry or tired. When shopping in places you haven’t visited before, you should always try to start early in the morning when shops aren’t crowded since this makes shopping more enjoyable for both parents and kids. And if you plan to visit a lot of stores, you might even want to think about bringing your Andersen shopper electric bikes on your vacation. By riding bikes, you’ll make shopping quicker and more fun for the entire family. If you notice your kids are getting fatigued over the course of the day, you can always take a break from shopping and have lemonade or ice cream.

Visit a local zoo

Visiting a zoo is fun for all ages, but especially kids. Therefore, having a zoo day is a great way to make a vacation more interesting and adventurous for your little ones. Before you decide to have a zoo day, make sure you take a look at local zoo’s website and see whether you can pick a day that might have some special features included in your admission. Also, just like when visiting a beach, you’ll have to bring tons of things your kids might need. We’re talking about stuff such as spare clothes, sunglasses, and extra water. Even though kids love seeing animals, you can try to make it more fun by making a game out of it. You can print out sheets about each of the animals you’ll be seeing and give them to your kids. Once you’re at the zoo, you can ask your little ones questions while they’re looking at the animals. And the kid with most correct answers can later pick a place where you’ll go for ice cream or pick out a souvenir from the zoo’s gift shop.

Merken

 
By: Bailey Gaddis
 
While the spirit of many ski towns dissolves with the snow, the Tahoe area pulsates with energy all year. When the skiers and boarders skip town, usually after enjoying the snow from November to July, a fresh crop of thrill seekers and wanderlusts emerge to enjoy the hiking, biking, diving, fishing, swimming, and sightseeing in the visually rich environment.
 
With an overflowing platter of recreational options, this area is ideal for families yearning for adventure, but with a variety of comfort zones.
 
When planning your summer vacation to Tahoe, pick and choose from the following to craft an epic journey into this astounding pocket of the Sierra Nevada mountain range.
 
1.    Bike Riding: If you’re looking for a scenic, safe, and leisurely family bike ride, rent your wheels at Parallel Mountain Sports in the Village at Squaw Valley (or bring your own!) and have them direct you to the path that snakes along the Truckee River all the way to the crisp waters of Lake Tahoe.

1. Truckee River Trail - Photo   Credit - Flickr - Kyle Briscoe

1. Truckee River Trail – Photo Credit – Flickr – Kyle Briscoe

 

Many of Tahoe’s other popular spots (see Sand Harbor below) rent bikes and offer family-friendly paths. 
 
2.    Scuba Diving: With excellent visibility and a fantasyland of shipwrecks, forests, and mazes of boulders, the depths of Lake Tahoe provide an optimal yet eerie destination for scuba divers.
3. Beach at Sand Harbor - Photo   Credit - Flickr - TravelingOtter

2. Beach at Sand Harbor – Photo Credit – Flickr – TravelingOtter

 
Many of the nearest dive shops are located in Reno, Nevada so make sure you pre-plan your dives – and psst… one of the favorites is Sierra Dive Center.
 
3.    Beach Bumming: Stick your toes into the warm silky sand at Sand Harbor, which offers boulders to dive off, rentals for goodies like bikes and SUP boards, hiking trails, and clean facilities. Make sure you arrive early to snag a parking spot, as the allure of this sanctuary is not lost on fellow beach bummers. 
2. Sand Harbor Popular Dive Site on   Tahoe - Photo Credit - Flickr - Don Graham

3. Sand Harbor Popular Dive Site on Tahoe – Photo Credit – Flickr – Don Graham

 
4.     Fishing Charter: The Hyatt Regency at Lake Tahoe’s Incline Village is now offering a program named Fishable Lake Tahoe that allows families to book a private fishing charter, which includes fishing licenses, bait, tackle, and complimentary beverages and snacks. And, because prepping your catch is often the most unsavory aspect of fishing the resort’s Lone Eagle Grille will prepare and serve your fish for you – but, you can still call it a meal well earned!
4. Hyatt Regency Fishing Charter -   Photo Credit - Hyatt Regency

4. Hyatt Regency Fishing Charter – Photo Credit – Hyatt Regency

 
5.     Paddle Boarding: If you want an ideal way to glide over the clear waters of Lake Tahoe while also giving your arms, core, and legs (OK, every part of your body) a workout, check out the stand-up paddle board rentals, lessons, and tours at Tahoe Adventure Company. If you slip off the board on your journey pat yourself on the back for having a well-rounded Lake Tahoe excursion – because come on, you can’t go on the lake without getting in it.   

5. SUP and Kayak on Lake Tahoe -   Photo Credit - Flickr - Adventures On Wheels

5. SUP and Kayak on Lake Tahoe – Photo Credit – Flickr – Adventures On Wheels

 
6.    Geocaching: Catch a ride on the Ariel Tram that takes you over 2,000 feet up to High Camp at Squaw Valley and get to searching for the ten geocaches that contain prizes and a log sheet to sign. After you’re done exploring, make your way to the High Camp pool and hot tub perfectly positioned to offer gasp-worthy views of the mountainscapes.
6. Geocaching at Sqauw Valley -   Photo Credit - Flickr- Squaw Valley Alpine Mea

6. Geocaching at Sqauw Valley – Photo Credit – Flickr- Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows

 
7.    Ropes Course: The ultimate family bonding activity lives at the Lake Tahoe Ropes Course, which includes three aerial adventure parks that suit every level of ability. Plan to spend over 2.5 hours navigating this course while diving into the act of team work with your friends and family. Children as young as 5 can participate.

By: Bailey Gaddis

San Francisco has figured out how to achieve the tricky alchemy of sophistication mixed with flair and fun, making it an ideal vacation destination for a family with a varied platter of interests. From epic bay views to grassy sprawls, fine art galleries to interactive museums, and white table cloths and candles to picnic benches surrounded by the smells of hamburgers, San Francisco has something for everyone.

But, with such an expansive city to explore it can give even the savviest traveling family anxiety when deciding where to start. Union Square is a favorite home base for many families as it’s drenched in amble opportunities for shopping, dining, and outdoor recreation. Also, Union Square is within walking distance to Chinatown, the iconic cable cars, and so much more.

Where to Stay in San Francisco

The Westin St. FrancisA family friendly hotel that provides gifts for the kids at check-in and offers family rooms and complimentary cribs. This historic hotel is also a great option if your family enjoys a sprinkle of luxury. And, depending on your style preference of said luxury, The Westin has you covered, offering both classic and modern rooms.

 

1. The Westin St. Francis - Photo  Credit - Prayitno on Flickr

1. The Westin St. Francis – Photo Credit – Prayitno on Flickr

 

 

Inn at Union SquareIf you’re yearning for a getaway that allows you to cozy-up in one of America’s most eclectic cities check out the newly renovated Inn at Union Square. This boutique hotel has chic and comfortable rooms set far enough back from the street to allow the sweet sounds of silence to echo through your room (at least after the kids go to sleep.)

 

2. The Inn at Union Square - Photo  Credit - Bailey Gaddis

2. The Inn at Union Square – Photo Credit – Bailey Gaddis

 

 

Located less than a block from Union Square Plaza and surrounded by some of the best dining options in the area, this modern inn will add a few doses of ease into your travels.

Hilton San Francisco Union SquareWhat’s a must-have amenity for many kids? That’s right, pool. A rare commodity in many city hotels, the Hilton offers a large outdoor pool and Jacuzzi area. Also, the hotel provides small but often-essential details like a mini-fridge, children’s menu, and an on-site convenience store.

 

3. The Hiton Pool Area - Photo  Credit - Dion Hinchcliffe on Flickr

3. The Hiton Pool Area – Photo Credit – Dion Hinchcliffe on Flickr

 

 

Where to Eat in San Francisco

Super DuperSometimes, a family just needs a quality hamburger without a lot of fuss. At Super Duper, you can nosh on a burger made from humanely raised cows that are fed a 100% vegetarian diet and sourced from family-owned ranches – the patties are served on freshly baked buns. And what’s a burger without a side of quality fries, and shakes and cones made with organic cream from Straus Family Creamery. And don’t worry about the calories – all the walking San Francisco demands will sizzle them off.

 

4. Super Duper Burger - Photo  Credit - Jun Seita on Flickr

4. Super Duper Burger – Photo Credit – Jun Seita on Flickr

 

 

E&O Kitchen and BarThis three story modern Asian eatery is a great option for parents traveling with kids old enough to order room service and a movie for and sneak away to have a romantic dinner. If you’re up for a culinary adventure try the Japanese “Bop.”

TacoreaOffering a fascinating fusion of Mexican and Korean inspired tacos this laid back taco joint will keep your taste buds entertained with options like a kimchi burrito, spicy pork bowl, or (my kid’s favorite) the tater tot nachos.

Where to Explore in San Francisco

Cable Cars – An easy way to get to San Fran favorites like the Fisherman’s Wharf, where you can immerse your family in the Exploratorium, hop on tour to Alcatraz, or visit the creatures at Aquarium of the Bay. And, this classic transportation allows you to skip the hassle of navigating your car through the busy streets and spending half your day hunting down parking. Buy your tickets at the intersection of Powell and Mason Street in Union Square.

 

5. Cable Car - Photo Credit - Mike Roqué on Flickr

5. Cable Car – Photo Credit – Mike Roqué on Flickr

 

 

Yerba Buena Ice Skating and Bowling CenterIf you family enjoys some good-natured competition step on the ice or into some bowling shoes at this center located in Yerba Buena Gardens. This space is a rarity in that it’s open every day of the year.

 

6. Yerba Buena Skaing Rink - Photo  Credit - Michael Ocampo

6. Yerba Buena Skaing Rink – Photo Credit – Michael Ocampo

 

 

Children’s Creativity Museum A collection of kid friendly labs and studios all facilitated by artists and educators there to support the creative process of guests. The creative areas include a Community Lab, Imagination Lab, Play Patio, Animation Studio, Music Studio, Tech Lab, Innovation Lab, and Spiral Gallery.

 

7. Childrens Creativity Museum -  Photo Credit - Ruth Hartnup

7. Childrens Creativity Museum – Photo Credit – Ruth Hartnup

 

 

Union Square Plaza – This central spot to enjoy fresh air, well-placed benches, and a heart shaped art installation is a favorite during the holidays when it transforms into a winter playground with an ice rink and massive lighted tree.

 

8. Union Square Plaza - Photo  Credit - adrian8_8 on Flickr

8. Union Square Plaza – Photo Credit – adrian8_8 on Flickr

 

 

Traveling with young kids is not a good idea for some. For others, it is a total nightmare. While these are how some people describe their experiences, it is not often the case. In an article by Cameron Wears in Nomadicmatt blog, he presents traveling with kids as a good experience. One that is challenging but not daunting.

Travelling with young Kids is a pain?...

Travelling with young Kids is a pain?…

Traveling with kids don’t need to be a pain. It could be a surprisingly pleasant and rewarding experience with the help of the right bag packed full of the right things. Here is a list of things to bring for a hassle-free, enjoyable traveling experience with young kids.

  • Smartphone containing all downloaded electronic confirmation of booked transportation, hotels, or apartments. Waiting in line to buy tickets is a dangerous endeavor when traveling with children. Young children have short attention spans and some have shorter tempers. Asking tired children to travel some more because the hotel you intended to go to is fully booked may induce some whining and crying. By booking ahead of time, parents can ensure an easier transportation and faster access to hotel or apartment accommodation. Parents can also choose to make many time allowances when booking ahead of time. This is important because with kids everything is uncertain. Irritability, toilet stops, and stalling must be considered when making travel plans. As for accommodation, it is important to double check that the accommodation is comfortable, the right size, and offers the right services needed. Hotels are usually good enough for sleeping in and leaving things to go sightseeing. However, it may be better to book apartments for longer vacations, people with special dietary requirements, and for larger groups of families. Service Apartments like Lalco Residency offers multiple bedrooms, living area, dining room, and a kitchen. This is good for those who need to self-cook and who wants all of the family to stay in one place.
  • Antibacterial wipes and hand sanitizers are a must. Sometimes travelers may have to eat at restaurants with questionable hygiene or those that lack facilities for washing hands. Wipes may be used to clean cutlery in these establishments while hand sanitizers can clean hands when water and soap are not available. This will prevent the discomforts that come with diarrhea and vomiting due to gastroenteritis.
  • Medicines. Kids seem to get ill on the worst days including vacations. Reduce the stress of looking for pharmacies in an unknown country with different language by packing a travel health kit in your luggage. Centers for disease control and prevention suggests bringing medicine for fever or pain like acetaminophen or ibuprofen, anti-diarrheal medication such as Loperamide, and antihistamine for allergies. Besides medicines, First-aid essentials such as bandages and plasters, thermometer, nail clippers, and a hot water bottle are must-haves. Sunscreens are important all year round. There are various available sunscreens on the market. Check out this post from the Independent for the list of the 9 best sunscreens for kids.
  • Comfortable clothes appropriate for the weather and terrain will make happy children. Don’t forget to check the weather of the location you’re going to. Pack rain coats, rain pants, and galoshes if going to a rainy destination. For hot days, it is advisable to wear lightweight and breathable clothes. For colder destinations, it is important to bring lots of layers to keep warm. It wouldn’t hurt to check forums and blog posts for advice either. Check out Travel Fashion Girl’s article to learn more about packing for multi-season tips.
  • Toys and snacks. Children are full of energy that can cause trouble if suppressed. Make sure to prepare activities to keep children engaged during long flights, queues, and restaurant waits. Coloring books, word searches, and Rubik’s cube will pass time quickly. Travel journals will get kids drawing and writing about the new things and activities they have tried while traveling. If you want a lighter travel, filling your Smartphone with children-friendly apps is the way to go. Smartphone camera may also be used to keep children away from boredom. If there is no room for children’s apps on the Smartphone and there’s no space for toys in the bag, be sure to bring interesting stories and deliver it with style to captivate the attention of the kids. Snacks are good to keep children from hunger when delays happen. Keep away from sweets though to avoid sugar rush which can make the statement “traveling with kids is a pain” come true. Instead of packing chocolate bars, candies, and cakes opt for fruits, savory crackers and bread instead.
  • Accessories. Accessories are not only good for the sake of fashion and beautiful photographs. Take, for example, Hats and sunglasses. These protect from the harmful rays of the sun during summer days. Gloves and scarves are for winter. Gloves trap warmth inside and prevent the hands from losing its grip due to icy temperatures. The grip is important for performing movements needed outdoors such as unpacking a backpack. Scarves protect the neck from getting hit by strong winds thus preventing neck pain. It also gives additional warmth.
  • A file storage containing all important documents. Placing passports, visa documents, and insurance documents in one location will reduce time spent looking for misplaced documents. Searching for things is not ideal with kids around. Once the documents are found, it might be the kids who go missing next. Buying ID in necklace holders for the kids to wear is a good idea. If the kids get lost, the ID will help them find their way home. Sending email copies of the documents are also advisable in case the original files are lost.

It takes the right bag with the right things to make “traveling with young kids is a pain” into “traveling with young kids is an enjoyable experience”. Anticipating the possible challenges of traveling with kids is a good way of preventing stress and frustration that comes with hot, cross, and crying children. Equipped with the right materials, parents can prevent sickness, tantrums, and bored kids. Traveling with kids is a wonderful experience. It gives time for the family to get to know each other and spend quality time together. Discovering new places with children is not a nightmare with the right bag at hand.

About the Author: Lysha works at Lalco Residency – Luxury Service Apartments & Hotel Mumbai and she loves her job. Helping clients and monitoring the progress of business strategies along with her leadership skills make her perfect suit for Hospitality services. You can catch up with Lysha at Lalco Residency in Mumbai.

Merken

Merken

As if traveling wasn’t hard enough, getting from the plane to your place of stay can and most of the time is a long lasting nightmare, especially if you are traveling with your family. Children can be demanding, and after a long flight, and an unpleasant neck ache you need some good news, something to relax you, to take you directly to your comfy bed, not needing to fight your way there.

Getting to your place of stay is a matter of choice, and normally you wish to make the best choice for your family. Using private airport transfer might seem like an expensive idea, some unneeded luxury, but let us check some facts, and judge again. You will see that sometimes the most obvious is really the best solution!

Lower your level of TAXI stress

Lower your level of TAXI stress

Airport private transport present transportation service which offers to get you and your family from the airport directly to your place of stay, and once you’re done, it takes you back to the airport. All of this is done online, so you can book it in advance, prepay it, and need to worry not!

There are plenty of advantages of hiring a private transfer, and these are only some of them:

  • Lower your level of stress: as already mentioned, the flight is stressful enough. Compared to using public transport, or hiring a rent a car, the private transfer can be cheaper, because you pay for the whole transport car, not by person, contrary to the public bus. Plus, you don’t need to drive, using maps, or GPS, or other means of navigation, so you don’t need to worry about getting lost. Enjoy your trip to your accommodation stress-free. Plus, your children will probably be also anxious and will need to blow some steam, which is not good if you’re going to walk to the bus station or wait for a taxi, which for some airports can be quite a challenge to find.
  • If you are visiting your destination for the first time, there is a chance you might get lost. Airport private transfer is serviced by professional drivers, which will take you to your place by the shortest and fastest route, even show you the tourist attractions as you travel.
  • Security: all private transfers are booked in advance, so not only you need not wait for the transport, you can inform the company about the size of your luggage, the number of passengers, etc. When using public transport, you always have to worry about your luggage; some cities are more dangerous than other.
  • Payment: you can make a prepayment online, or fully pay the service. Using public transportation often requires you to pay in the local currency, which means looking for the exchange office, plus, if using a taxi, you can easily be ripped – off, because the driver can drive you around the city, charging much more than he should. If using the bus, again, local currency can be a problem, plus some buses need a ticket bought on a vending machine, yet another stress! Private transport offers you all the information in advance, booked for a fixed price quoted on the website when and unchangeable after the confirmed reservation!
  • Split cost: when traveling with other families, the advantage is splitting the costs, because you will pay for the vehicle, not by person.
  • Language issue: no such issue if using private transfer, because most of the time, when visiting a new place, the different language can be a problem for getting around. Most of the private transfer companies’ drivers are well educated, and they speak one or more world languages, you can even use some of them as your translators on your way to your accommodation.
  • Another stress relief: you don’t need to worry about parking fees, pay toll fees, rent a car paperwork, car insurance, passenger insurance. All of these fees are predetermined, so there are no hidden charges, never!
  • Dependable: many airport transfer companies offer their services 24/7, 356 days a year and most of them track your flight, and so in a case of flight delay, they ensure you on time pickup.

Always make sure you book some of the most reliable and trustworthy companies, who made their reputation by always giving the best service possible. Companies like kiwitaxi, blacklane, mydriver, Canada transfer, USA transfer etc.

Private Airport Transfer – Family Friendly Solution

Private Airport Transfer – Family Friendly Solution

Offering services in all of the most visited countries in the world, Kiwitaxi is one of the most popular choices when traveling. All the transfer can be booked online, with services offered so far to more than 100 000 tourists all over the world, gaining a vast experience in the process. They work with only the most experienced and reliable service providers in every country. You can choose the right transportation for your needs, they offer cars from 4 all to 19 passengers, and can even choose the child seat option; the driver will install the seat before your arrival, or departure.

Few more important things: always book your transfer at least 16 hours before; if in a hurry, be sure to contact the companies support team, and try and find a solution.

Life is a trip, not a destination, so give your family the time of their life!

Merken

Merken

 

Fun Things to Do with Kids in the Cayman Islands

Fun Things to Do with Kids in the Cayman Islands: Image source: https://flic.kr/p/9mNFYP

The Cayman Islands are one of the most ideal places for a beach escape. Although they are mostly about the ocean and the sand, there are plenty of fun activities there besides catching the sun and swimming. This is especially important if you are traveling with kids, because regardless of how beautiful the scenery is, the kids are not ones to sit back and enjoy the view. So, if you are lucky enough to be planning a Cayman Islands family holiday, here are some fun activities that will keep your kids entertained all the time.

Go on a Pirate Cruise

The Caribbean has a rich history of mischievous pirates patrolling the seas, lurking for treasure-packed European boats. While they unleashed a lot of irreparable mayhem, their image is romanticized in numerous movies, including the Pirates of the Caribbean, and kids love pretending to be pirates in their games. That’s why they will definitely enjoy participating in a wild experience of spending some time on realistic-looking pirate ships where they can sail with other pirates or even walk the plank.

 

Go on a Pirate Cruise

Go on a Pirate Cruise – Image source: https://flic.kr/p/9mREfN

Visit Stingray City

Stingray City is one of the most famous tourist attractions in the area. Not only will your kids enjoy it, but you too will have a great time. Here you can see more than a hundred stingrays that cruise the series of sandbars. The visitors are allowed to interact with the stingrays and take a real close look at them while standing in water that is two to four feet deep. Stingrays are graceful creatures and some of them are really large and impressive.

Grab the stars

Similar to Stingray City, Starfish Point allows you to observe the sea stars through the shallow and crystal clear waters. Toddlers and young children will enjoy playing here, because most of the water is roughly a foot deep, while the parents can get their thrill by taking artistic shots of the sea stars as well as their kids while playing.

 

Grab the stars

Grab the stars – Image source: https://flic.kr/p/9mRHEG

Explore the Cayman Turtle Centre

This is another adventure that is actually a close encounter with the rich wildlife of the Cayman Islands. The Cayman Turtle Centre is home to the turtle hatchery and the turtle touch tank. You can also visit the Breeding Pond that has giant green sea turtles. If you plan a half-day visit, you will also be able to see a saltwater crocodile and other predators in their own lagoon, and also take a swim in the island’s largest pool with a waterslide and waterfalls. Finally, if you are feeling up for it, you can even snorkel with young turtles and tropical fish.

Meet iguanas

If you go to the Botanic Park, make sure you visit the Blue Iguana Safari which is located in this facility. Here, you will be able to see blue iguanas, popularly called “blue dragons”. This is not just a pretty sight. Visits to this safari can be very educational for kids, because the guide will explain to them why blue iguanas became endangered and how this program was able to bring them back from the brink of extinction.

 

Meet iguanas

Meet iguanas – Image source: https://flic.kr/p/9mREt7

Come aboard the submarine

Have you ever been in a real submarine, and we mean real, not a toy found in a theme park? If not, this will be a treat for you too, and the kids will be amazed. The Atlantis Submarine will take you on a 50-minute journey deep below the surface around the jaw-dropping reefs of Nassau (New Providence Island). On this journey, you will be able to see exotic fish, sharks, shipwrecks, etc.

Learn to dive or snorkel

The Cayman Islands are breathtaking on the surface, but they are even more stunning below it. If you are traveling with teenagers, taking a diving course could be very fun for them. Not only will they be able to learn a new skill, but they will also be introduced to a whole new world. Professionals from Cayman Turtle Divers can help them with everything from setting up their gear to teaching them how to be safe. They will also take them to some of the best scuba diving locations, such as Grand Cayman Reef, Grand Cayman Wall, Stingray City and Kittiwake Wreck Dive.

 

Learn to dive or snorkel

Learn to dive or snorkel – Image source: https://flic.kr/p/9mRGCQ

One of a kind horseback riding

What’s the big deal, you may say, horseback riding is something you can do just anywhere and the kids will not be very impressed. However, this experience is nothing like any other your kids had. At first, it will be just a regular ride down a beautiful and uninhabited beach, but once you get to the water, the saddles will be removed and you will ride into the ocean, because, guess what – these horses can swim.

Swimming with the dolphins

Dolphins are amazing creatures and they are very friendly. At the Dolphin Cove, you can meet some dolphin friends and swim with them. However, this is an option that should be used by adults, young adults and teenagers proficient in swimming, while younger kids and non-swimmers can enjoy a dolphin encounter from a safe place.

Hiking the Mastic Trail

For true adventurers there is nothing better than setting off on an exotic trail surrounded by trees and wildlife. The trail passing through Mastic Reserve certainly gives you that pleasure, especially because it is an untouched old-growth forest with a wide variety of animal and plant species. So, if your family has a sense of adventure, and if you’ve brought better footwear than flip-flops, be sure not to skip this one.

Sail on a boat

The local population takes real pride in their clear waters and marine life. It is no wonder that so many travel offers are directed precisely towards these areas. Sailing on a boat doesn’t seem like the ideal way to actually discover the treasures below the water surface, but that’s why they have boats with a glass bottom. By sailing on one of these, you will certainly have a good view of the water, which is something the kids will love.

As you can see, the Cayman Islands are much more than just stretches of soft sand and clear water. They also offer fantastic and fun activities your children will definitely enjoy, and who knows, maybe even you can have an exciting experience.

When it comes to fairy tale destinations, there aren’t many countries that can compete with Poland. The country’s fairy tales don’t simply exist in storybooks and the imagination, they can be found all across the country. From medieval towns to fantastical salt mines, hidden dwarves and stone dragons. There’s charming architecture of a time gone by in painted houses and romantic castles and the living breathing enchanted forests of yesteryear. Around every corner your imagination can go wild!

Whether you have a princess without a crown or a valiant prince in the making, a storybook lover or a history buff, every member of the family will be delighted by these charming days out! The whole family can lose themselves in the land of make believe, right here in Poland.

Coo over Castles

What better way to immerse yourself in a fairy tale adventure, than to explore some of the country’s most charming castles. If like me, you enjoy ‘window shopping’ for castles and would like to see more than one, you can do no better than the Lower Silesia region of Poland.

Hire a carriage (or a car) and spend a few days exploring the palatial palaces and mystical ruins that occupy the area. The castles originate from an impressive range of history, with some as old at the 12th century and some the grandiose homes of 17th century nobles.

For entirely different reasons, my favorites are Zamek Chojnik and Zamek Ksi??. Zamek Chojnik is an overgrown and other worldly ruin, that includes a beautiful woodland hike up to its location atop a hill, whereas Zamek Ksi?? is very much a palatial affair. A gorgeous coral building which sits majestically within excellently manicured gardens, it’s the perfect princess castle!

Whilst majestic architecture is abundant also in my new home city Krakow, for truly magical buildings it’s best to head out of the city. My favorite castle of all is the beautiful Kazimierz Castle which is nestled in the spectacular Ojców National Park (just 24 Kilometers away from Krakow). Characterized by its ragged rock formations and thick woodlands, it’s easy to feel like you’ve stepped into the most dazzling of stone globes!

Explore Magical Forests

Away from the hustle and bustle of Poland’s medieval towns, an enchanting forest can be found on the borderline of Poland Belarus. Bialowie?a Forest is the last primeval forest in lowland Europe, the last home to the European Bison called here ?ubr and centuries old Oak, Elm and Lime trees. Visit in winter to track the bison and wolves and to feel like you’ve stepped into the white wilderness of Narnia; or come and spring and travel around the forest on a noble steed (or you know, a mountain bike).

There’s no woodland area more unique than Poland’s Crooked Forest, in West Pomerania. Nobody really knows why the pine trees of Crooked Forest all bend sharply to the North just above the ground level, before curving back towards the sky. Were the trees manipulated by a human tool when they were planted? Was it simply a freak of nature, caused by a vicious snow storm? Or perhaps it was cursed by a wizard!

Hunt for Dwarves in Wieliczka and Wroc?aw

One of the most infamous attractions of Poland to this day, is the awe inspiring Wieliczka salt mine. Coax your children there by telling them it’s the rumored home of the dwarf kingdom, then watch their eyes light up as they take in the beautifully carved subterranean architecture and sparkling chandeliers. Historic statues and mythical creatures carved out of the rock salt, ensure that the experience is truly magical!

In recent years, the Dwarves of Poland have found a new home above ground – the town of Wroc?aw, where their population has been increasing steadily since 2005. There are over 350 now going about their day to day business in the town and special maps can be procured to assist your little ones in their search; although perhaps it’s wise to warn your children that their magical powers turn them to statues as soon as human eyes rest on them! Wroc?aw’s dwarves are scattered across the whole of the town, leaving plenty of opportunity to sightsee as you go!

Search for Dragons’ Lairs

Any visitor to Krakow can’t fail to notice that stone dragon gargoyles are perched atop many of the city’s oldest buildings and make no mistake, whilst these dragons may be made of rock, once upon a time a living breathing dragon terrorized the city! Well, so the legend says anyway.

A charming day can be spent counting the dragons and visiting the Dragon’s cave at the bottom of Wawel Castle Hill. Children can hear all about the story of old King Krak and the shoemaker who finally defeated the dragon and even see a fire breathing stone dragon. The perfect activity for your dragon slayer in the making!

Painted Villages and Crooked Houses

To truly feel like you’ve stepped into a magical kingdom, a visit to the ancient village of Zalipie is an absolute must. Rightly one of the country’s most popular tourist destinations, Zalipie is home to beautiful painted wood cottages. In a tradition, which has flourished over the last centuries, women of the village painted floral motifs over cracks in their wooden homes, with strikingly beautiful results.

A modern day kooky building is Sopot’s Crooked House, built in 2004 by the design team Szoty?scy & Zaleski. The vertigo inducing house, is warped and confusing in an utterly charming fashion! Inspired by the Polish fairytale illustrations of Jan Marcin Szancer and Per Dahlberg; it’s truly like stepping into the pages of your favorite story book!

The East Coast of the United States of America measures in at about 2,000 miles in length — and that’s just the amount of actual coastline along the country’s right-hand side. The beach as well as the area inland are ripe with interesting places to visit.

Most Affordable East Coast Destinations in the US for 2017

Most Affordable East Coast Destinations in the US for 2017

Of course, you already know this if you’re trying to plan a vacation along the East Coast. It can be difficult to narrow down your choices and eventually select your destination when there are so many big cities, historical sites, quaint towns and beautiful beaches to visit. An easy way to slash the list is to consider your budget, since many East Coast cities have a reputation for being expensive — New York City, we’re looking at you.

In order to make planning your next budget-friendly vacation easier, we’ve narrowed down the expanse of the East Coast down into a six-city list. These destinations combine the entertainment you seek with the wallet-friendly bottom line you need. Read through, find the spot that’s right for you and voila: you’re ready to book your next vacation.

1. Englewood, Florida

Englewood has all of the draws of the Sunshine State without the big price tag. If your vacation won’t be complete without a visit to the links, you can find plenty of well-maintained and challenging golf courses. And, of course, the area has plenty of white sand beaches for sunbathing and, when it gets to hot, you can take a dip in the bright blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

2. Harwich, Massachusetts

A trip to Cape Cod is one of the most quintessentially American vacations to take. But, with that iconic of a trip often comes a pretty hefty price tag. You can beat the system, though, by planning your Cape Code trip to Harwich, MA, in the fall.

The town will still have all of that classic New England charm, but it won’t cost as much because it’s off-peak. There’s still plenty of outdoor fun to be had, too: you can hike, kayak and bike as you would in the summer. Plus, you can spend time in the Harwich adorable downtown area without the rush of summer tourism. You might just find you prefer the Cape when the leaves start changing colors.

3. Dover, Delaware

The First State doesn’t get as much attention as its East Coast neighbors, but Delaware has plenty to offer tourists. Staying in a hub like Dover can provide you easy access to all the state has to offer, including its lively coastline of beaches like Rehoboth, its casinos and all its historical sites.

Dover is also a great example of strategic accommodation along the East Coast. The city is situated conveniently between bigger tourist hubs like Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, DC. You can save money, stay in Dover and check out all of the major cities without paying major city hotel prices.

4. Williamsburg, Virginia

Here’s the perfect destination for all the history buffs out there. Williamsburg has a full-on historical village populated by re-enactors who show visitors just what colonial Virginia was like. It’s also near to Jamestown and Yorktown, both of which are pristine representations of what our country once was.

Oh, and if you’re looking for a more modern activity to do while you visit all the state’s historical highlights, you can check out Busch Gardens theme park or Water Country USA, a water park near to the start of American colonization.

5. Franklin, North Carolina

North Carolina has it all — at least, as far as outdoor pursuits are concerned. The Tar Heel State has a full coastline of beautiful beaches to the east and the ripple of the Appalachian Mountains on its west.

In Franklin, NC, you can rent an affordable cabin that lends you easy access to the latter. The mountain climate is especially nice in late summer and early autumn, when temperatures land somewhere between 60 and 70 degrees. You can head out for hikes, fishing and even swimming in waterfalls. The more people you share the cabin with, the more affordable the trip will be, too.

6. Memphis, TN

Memphis is a bit farther from the East Coast than some of the other cities right on the shoreline. But don’t let distance deter you from visiting the home of Blues, delicious barbecue and Elvis Presley.

In fact, for many, The King is the main draw of Memphis. His estate, Graceland, gives visitors an idea of how Elvis lived. He spent 20 years overhauling the home he bought in 1957, and now visitors can see it in its entirety, including the meditation garden where Mr. Presley is buried. There are plenty of other Elvis-centric sites to visit, too.

These are only six of the many destinations along the East Coast that you might consider for your next vacation. But they represent all this side of the country has to offer — and the fact that many trips don’t have to break the bank. Whether you found your dream locale on this list or have let our selections inspire you to do more research, you’re on the way to the perfect East Coast getaway.

Kacey is a lifestyle blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.

Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!

So are you planning a vacation in South America with your kids? Vacations are a great way to engage with your kids. But at the same time you need to pay a bit more attention to the planning part when you are travelling with kids. South America has many places that will interest kids. However to make the experience a memorable one, you need to do your research.

The tourism industry in the South American countries is developing rapidly, ensuring that the tourists have a comfortable experience during their stay. Tourism in countries like Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela etc. isn’t only convenient, but also offers countless exotic Latin American experiences.

Best Places To Visit With Kids In South America

Best Places To Visit With Kids In South America

Here are a few places you can enjoy with your kids in South America;

#1. Machu Picchu, Peru

Peru is one of those holiday destinations that you would love to visit again after you have been there once. Not just because it has some very interesting places to visit, but also because of its kind hearted and tourist friendly people and the vivacious atmosphere. Machu Picchu, the ancient city abandoned since 1572 where the Inca civilization once thrived, is beyond any doubts the most remarkable places in Peru. Apart from its historical value, Machu Picchu is also located at a spectacular location in the Andes mountains. Peru isn’t, however, only about Machu Picchu, it has a lot more up its sleeves that will definitely enthrall your kids. The Choco Museum in Cuzco, where your kids can learn a plenty of stuffs about chocolates, or the Sacred Valley, which was also a part of the Inca civilization, are also some of the places in Peru you should not miss.

#2.  A Wildlife Tour of Argentina

What can be more exhilarating for the kids than a firsthand wildlife experience? They are surely going to have very fond memories of this trip. Argentina is a vast nation with a diverse topography and natural endowments. Every part of it has something to offer. If you are looking for something as exotic as a wildlife tour, the Valdes Peninsula won’t fail to impress. It is famous for its marine life which includes whales, sea lions, dolphins, and a lot more. The best time to visit the Valdes Peninsula is from May to December. Continue the wildlife experience to the Galapagos Islands where you will come across a host of unique creatures like the blue-footed boobie birds, Galapagos fur seal, Albatross and more.

#3. The Coffee Region of Colombia

A tour to the coffee region of Colombia will be one of a kin experience. Like the wine tours in Chile and Argentina, the coffee region tours in Columbia are also equally popular with coffee lovers. And you can tag your kids along for a fun learning experience. Guests are explained the entire process of coffee making from the sowing the seeds to the final stages when they are harvested and roasted. There is a lot more to do here as well. You can explore the Cocora Valley on horseback or visit the butterfly park or coffee park.

#4. Igazu Falls, Argentina

Argentina and Brazil share the Igazu Falls which are located in the Igazu National Park. It is the worlds largest system of waterfalls which divides the Igazu river into the upper and the lower parts. The waterfall system presents a stupendous view which would take any traveler by awe. You can book a full day tour of this wild and magnificent natural phenomenon from the either side, i.e the Brazilian and the Argentinean, of the falls. You will be led through the different trails and foot bridges to numerous vantage points for a breathtaking view of the falls. You can also observe the region’s wildlife on your way to the falls.

#5. Parque das Aves, Igazu National Park, Brazil

The Parque das Aves, which means ‘birds park’ in English, is located bear to the Igazu National Park and is an important point of interest for the tourists visiting Foz do Iguassu in Brazil. Here you will be able to see birds of around 150 different species. The colorful, feathery inhabitants of the park will be more fun to be around with if your kids take a keen interest in birds. This is a sanctuary for birds that can no longer survive on their own in the natural world. These birds are cared for by experts at the sanctuary and kept in a safe and happy environment.

#6. The Archaeological Park of Saint Augustine, Columbia

This is one of the most intriguing places to visit in Columbia. This ancient site located in the calm, laid back town of Saint Augustine consists of ancient statues, sarcophagi, monoliths and petroglyphs. These ancient statues and structures depicts smiling and smirking monsters, human faces and figures and also different types on animals like snakes, jaguars and birds. These ancient structures at the Saint Augustine were carved out of rocks between 100 A.D. to 1200 A.D.

#7. Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

The enthralling natural beauty of Chile is best realized from the Torre del Paine National Park that rises 2000 meters from the Patagonian Steppe. The park was created in 1959 and formed a part of a vast sheep estate formerly. Until it was converted into a national park, the region had undergone a massive phase of exploitation, from which it is still recovering. However, the pristine blue lakes, the winding trails through the forests, gushing rivers and not to forget the icy blue glacier together upholds the treasures that Chile has in store for its visitors.

Conclusion

South America is a part of the world that is remembered for a number of things, from football to wines. Travelling with kids and family to any of the South American will be as much fulfilling and fun as it would be for a lone traveler or a couple. There are so many reasons to visit South America that you would need to sit down and chalk out your plan carefully. However, any place you choose will be worth every penny you spend on the tour.

About the author: Mark Davis, the managing partner of Tango Tours and Tango Food and Wine Company, is obsessed with providing the best customer experience. He has been running Tango Tours since 2014. Mark started Tango Tours after over 20 years as a sales and marketing manager at a major U.S. airlines and traveling extensively throughout the world.

Also, he was in the wine importing business as a partner in Tango Trading Company. Their company specialized in wines of Argentina. The wine importing business is when he first developed many of his contacts in Buenos Aires and Mendoza and his knowledge and passion of Southern Hemisphere wines.

It extremely important to Mark that his guests have the ultimate food and wine experience as well as experiencing the local culture.