How to Eat Like the Locals Do While You’re on Vacation

If you love eating out and exploring new cuisines, your upcoming vacation is the perfect opportunity to broaden your horizons. Here’s how to eat like a local.

Food is one of the main reasons why people travel. What’s the point of visiting another country if you’re not going to try a few local specialties? As a traveller, you’re always going to encounter tourist traps but with a few simple tips, you can make sure that you’re dining like a local for most of your upcoming vacation.

Insider Tips for Dining Like a Local

  • Do a little research before you leave

Discovering hidden gems while you travel is all a part of the fun but it never hurts to do a bit of research before you hop on a flight. There is a wealth of insider secrets and local tips available to anyone who performs a quick search on their destination, so make sure that you don’t miss out on a few of the best dining experiences. Doing a quick search will also tell you the best times to visit certain restaurants too.

  • Forgo the English menus

If you really want to eat like a local, try out restaurants that don’t have English menus. This is not to say that there aren’t any good local restaurants with English menus, they’re just tourist traps more often than not.

  • Don’t skip local food markets

Local food and farmer’s markets are often some of the best places to experience local cuisine. Almost every country in the world has these types of markets, so ask around and plan a fun day out. You may even stumble upon a market or two as you go about your day, so give them a try if you do.

  • Watch what the locals do

One of the best ways to find out about the best places to eat is to ask locals themselves. Whether this is the concierge at the hotel or the server at a restaurant, locals are generally more than happy to provide you with some of their personal recommendations.

  • Use your hands and eyes to order

Trying to make sense of a menu or asking your server to explain all of the dishes to you are not the only ways to decide on a meal. Take a walk around the restaurant and see if you can spot any dishes that look particularly appealing to you. You could also ask what the house specialty is and give that a try.

  • Learn the etiquette

If you’re going to be spending a lot of time at local restaurants, it helps to know the etiquette. Websites such as TripAdvisor and Lonely Planet offer a lot of information on the right and wrong ways to dine out in foreign countries.

Over and above these tips, remember to relax and enjoy this experience. In most countries, locals are very used to foreign diners and are more than happy to help – they’re not going to judge you if you don’t know how to pronounce something. Locals want you to have an enjoyable experience so let them make recommendations and enjoy exploring these new dishes.  

How to Feel Less Anxious about Flying

Hate flying? There are ways that you can get to your destination with as little anxiety as possible.

Seeing a new place is always exciting but if the thought of getting there fills you with dread, it can take away from the overall experience.

Anxiety about air travel is not uncommon. In fact, the whole experience can be a bit stressful if you’re not prepared but when you already have anxiety about the flight, everything else feels worse too.

What many people don’t realise is that flying is far safer than getting into a car and driving to your destination. However, people hate flying for many different reasons, including a fear of heights, claustrophobia and terrorism.

Whatever your reasons, there are steps that you can take to improve your flying experience.

Tips to Overcome Your Fear of Flying

  • Do a little reading

Sometimes knowing exactly why flying is so safe can make you feel a lot better about your upcoming trip. For example, knowing how planes are equipped to deal with emergencies and how a plane continues to fly even if an engine fails can all keep your anxiety to a minimum. One thing you should avoid is any media about airplane disasters – don’t skew your impressions unnecessarily.

  • Stick to an aisle seat

If you can choose your seats when you book your flight, stick to an aisle seat if you’re prone to feeling anxious and claustrophobic. This way you can get up and move around with ease and you won’t need to catch a glimpse of sky-high views from the window.

  • Focus on the positive outcome

In the days leading up to your flight, do what you can to focus your mind on the positive outcome of your trip. Think about the things you will do once you get to your destination or the friends and family that you will get to spend quality time with.

  • Give yourself plenty of time

To ensure your stress levels are as low as possible, give yourself enough time to get to the airport, check in and get through the boarding gates. If you have the option to relax in an airport lounge prior to your flight, take full advantage. Airport lounges are geared towards relaxation, making them perfect for anxious flyers.

  • Have something to keep your mind busy

Give your mind something to focus on during the flight. Whether this is an eBook, a relaxing playlist or a few games, make sure that your phone battery is charged and that you’ve downloaded everything you need to keep your mind busy during your flight.

  • You’re in control

If a lack of control is making you feel anxious, turn this around in your mind. For one, you decided that you wanted to fly, which means you get to decide how positive you want this experience to be. You control your thoughts! Your breathing is something else you control, so breathe slowly and deeply to relax your body and mind. Know that any negative feelings and emotions you’re experiencing are temporary and will pass. Just keep riding the wave and flipping your mind back to the positive.

If you are really concerned about an upcoming trip, speak to your doctor about medication options. Sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medication can both be options but you should always speak to a medical professional first.

9 Small European Towns Everyone Should Visit at Least Once

Portree Scotland_Small European Towns

If you simply love exploring small towns and villages, there are a few in Europe that you simply have to see. This is our recommended list.

Europe is well known for its larger cities such as Paris, London and Berlin but in between all these popular tourist destinations are smaller, charming towns that truly embody all that Europe’s about. From beautiful cobbled streets and colourful buildings to spooky bridges, there is so much to see once you venture outside of the busier European cities.

If you would like to experience some old-world charm and beautiful scenery during your next vacation, here are a few towns that you should definitely consider adding to your list.

1.Ribe, Denmark

Population: 8,168

Ribe is the oldest town in Denmark and all of Scandinavia. Established back in the eighth century, Ribe is home to some of the most striking cathedrals and quaint houses made of timber, all of which are connected by cobbled streets. Some of the must-see attractions include the Ribe Cathederal, which was built in 948, the VikingeCentre, the art museum and Sælhund, which is a black and white inn on the waterfront.

Source: Britannica

2. Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria, Germany

Population: 26,178

Just 80 minutes outside of Munich, you will find a delightful Bavarian town filled with historical buildings, painted religious scenes and beautiful cobbled streets. Garmisch-Partenkirchen was once split into a Roman and Teutonic town but they were combined after hosting the 1936 Winter Olympics. The town is situated at the bottom of Germany’s highest peak, Zugspitze, which is a sight to behold. Other worthwhile sights include the Partnach Gorge, Michael Ende Kurpark and Riessersee, a picturesque Alpine lake.

Source: TripAdvisor

3. Portree, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Population: 2,480

If it’s natural beauty you’re after, the Isle of Skye in Scotland is a must-see. Portree, in particular, is home to an abundance of pastel-coloured buildings, small pubs and a peaceful harbour. Along with taking in the nature along the coastline and around the town, Portree is a great place to try new food and do a little shopping.

Source: Herald Scotland

4. Colmar, France

Population: 70,284

This dreamy town dates back to the 9th century and is often referred to as Little Venice because of the waterways that run through it. Colmar is known as the capital of wine and since it has both a French and German influence, there is an abundance of eateries and bakeries around every corner. Top things to do in Colmar include seeing St. Martins Church and the Renaissance-style Pfister house and visiting the Tanner’s and fishmonger’s districts.

Source: Jana Meerman

5. Hallstatt, Austria

Population: 779

From the moment you arrive via the ferry, you will realise how special Hallstatt is. This breath-taking town is a UNESCO World Heritage town and is home to quaint restaurants, 12th-century churches and a vibrant market square. Some of the top attractions in Hallstatt include the famous Ice Cave, Bone and House Cemetery, Lake Hallstatt and the 5 Fingers Lookout Point.

Source: Road Affair

6. Bled, Slovenia

Population: 8,171

Established in 1004, Bled is surrounded by beautiful mountains and was at one point gifted to the Bishop of Brixen by the Holy Roman Emperor. Bled Castle can be found in the middle of the lake, while another hilltop castle offers some of the most stunning views. If health spas are your thing, you will love this town. Other worthwhile things to do include ringing the wishing bell, exploring Bled Island and taking a hot air balloon ride over the town.

Source: Eurail

7. Rye, England

Population: 9,041

Located in East Sussex, Rye was once one of the most important shipping centres during Roman times. This medieval-looking town is filled with terra cotta roofs and is home to St Mary’s Parish Church and the Ypres Tower. Rye is only a two-hour train ride from London and hosts the Bay Scallop Week in February. Along with eating and drinking like locals, visitors should definitely see Mermaid Street, the Rye Windmill and explore the Rye Castle gardens.

Source: Reddit

8. Goreme, Turkey

Population: 2,000

Built during the Roman era, Goreme has one of the most unique landscapes because of the rock formations that surround the town. In fact, many of the hotels and homes are built into these caves and rock faces, making for a very different accommodation experience. Goreme looks like something out of a fairytale, especially when you watch the hot air balloons sailing above you in the early morning light. Goreme is home to a number of historical and religious sites and an array of restaurants. Must-see attractions include the open-air museum and Devrent (Imagination) Valley.

Source: World of Travel

9. Albarracín, Spain

Population: 1,016

This gorgeous mountain town is located in a rocky valley near the Guadalaviar River and is filled with red, pink and orange homes. Most of the town was destroyed during the Spanish Civil War but the homes and streets were gradually rebuilt. Some of the attractions that you should see include the Catedral del Salvador, the town’s castle and the Torre del Andador (Walkway Tower).

Source: Afar

With so many wonderful little towns to explore in Europe, you may just need to extend your stay.

Quick Tips to Help You Pack Lighter for Your Euro Trip

Packing for a Euro Trip_Air Doctor

Planning a euro trip over the December period? Here are a few simple tips that will keep your luggage as light as possible.

There’s nothing quite like spending a snowy December in the beautiful cities of Europe – it just has an entirely different energy about it. However, if you’re going to brace the colder temperatures, you’re going to need the right clothing.

So, how do you decide what to pack without having to bring your entire wardrobe along with you and pay extra fees for overweight baggage?

Pro Packing Tips for Your Upcoming Euro Trip

The further up north you go in December, the more severe the temperatures are going to be, so take this into account when you’re packing for your upcoming trip.

Here are a few tips that will ensure your luggage is as light as it can possibly be throughout your euro trip.

  • Start with a Smaller Suitcase

If you have smaller luggage available to you, start with that. When you have more space, you automatically want to start filling it with more clothing and items you think you’ll need. By starting smaller, you’re forced to be more picky about your clothing and accessory choices.

  • Pack for the Best-Case Scenario

Instead of packing for the worst possible scenario, rather pack as if everything will run smoothly on your trip. You can always purchase additional items if you really need them. In most cases, just packing the basics is more than enough to see you through your entire trip.

  • Get a Few Packing Cubes

These handy little cubes really make a difference to the space in your bag. Along with helping you save space, packing cubes make it that much easier to stay organised. Use them to divide your clothing into days to make it easier to pack the right number of outfits. They will also prevent you from packing additional items you might not need because your outfits are all pre-planned.

  • Merino Wool is an All-Round Winner

If you want to pack light and stay warm during your winter Euro trip, find clothing that’s made from Merino wool. As an added bonus, you can wear jerseys made from Merino for several days and it won’t smell.

  • Make Versatile Choices

Choose clothing, shoes and accessories that are versatile and can be worn with multiple outfits. For example, instead of packing two different types of boots, rather choose one pair of boots that will go with everything else you’re packing.

  • Wear Your Bulky Items on the Plane

To save some extra space in your luggage, wear your bulkiest jacket and shoes on the day of your flight. You can always take it off on the plane and you won’t need to worry about it taking up too much space in your checked luggage.

Following these few basic guidelines should be enough to save you space and money before and during your upcoming trip to Europe.

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Discover 7 of the World’s Most Untapped Destinations

Congo gorillas Travelers

If you want to make your next vacation the most unique yet, here are a few destinations to consider.

The world is filled with wonderful things to do and see but since time and money are the two most common travel restrictions, sometimes you need to be a little pickier about your destinations, particularly if you want to see something unique.

There’s nothing quite like experiencing a place that not many people have seen and the good news is that there are so many unspoiled treasures to discover around the world. We have put together a list of some of the most beautiful and interesting travel destinations that you should consider for your next vacation.

Untouched Travel Destinations Not Many People Know About

  • Faroe Islands

Source: https://jewishnews.timesofisrael.com

This beautiful island retreat is located between Scotland and Iceland. The water might not be ideal for swimming but the untouched landscape offers more than enough splendor and will keep you busy for hours every day. The rocky coastlines were known to be Viking territory in the past, which adds to the history of this interesting place. Most of the buildings feature large glass windows and balconies, from which you can take in the views. In order to preserve the ecosystem, tourism is limited, so you will need to plan this trip quite far in advance.

  • Xilitla

Source: https://www.visitmexico.com

This eye-catching blue and green landscape is located at the top of Huasteca Potosina in Mexico. Visitors will get to experience an array of natural pools and caves that tell a magical story.  If you decide to make your way to Xilitla during the Spring, you will also get to experience the butterfly season, which adds even more color to this already vibrant landscape. If you love being in nature and discovering new cultures, this is definitely a destination you should add to your list.

  • Georgia

Source: https://www.thoughtco.com

Georgia lies between Europe and Asia and is a country that not many people actually know about. Georgia played an important role in the history of the Silk Road and is a warm and hospitable place where travelers are made to feel right at home. Georgia is brimming with history, beautiful spring waters and green mountains that see snow in the winter months. The country has also a rich winemaking history that you can experience during your stay. If castles are something you enjoy, you will have 11 to choose from in Georgia.

  • Congo

Source: https://www.thegef.org

There are very few destinations like Congo – it’s definitely one for the adventurers. Travelers can expect luscious forests, exotic wildlife and welcoming cities along the way. Brazzaville, the capital of Congo, is known for its safe and clean streets and is definitely something you should see while you’re there. And naturally, Congo is most well known for its gorillas. Travelers will have the opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent creatures with the help of trained guides.

  • Lofoten Archipelago

Source: https://www.lifeinnorway.net

If kayaking, hiking and sailing are your ideas of an ideal vacation, you definitely need to explore Lofoten in Norway. There is an array of impressive mountains and fjords for visitors to enjoy and if you happen to go at the right time of the year, you may just be lucky enough to experience the Northern Lights. The Lofoten Islands are also home to some impressive wildlife, including white-tailed eagles and whales.

  • Alberobello

Source: https://discoveritaly.alitalia.com

Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996, Alberobello is a quaint town in Italy that dates back to the 14th Century. The town’s unique little homes are called Trulli, which are cone-shaped and built with limestone. If small, historic seaside towns are your idea of the perfect vacation, Alberobello is the perfect place to get away from it all.

  • Southern Namib Desert

Source: https://www.finglobal.com

This destination may be remote but it’s one you will never forget. Located in Namibia, this desert offers a feast for the eyes in terms of colors, unique landscapes and stars. Travelers can explore the landscape by hot air balloon, horse, or 4×4. Hiking is also an option if you want a real adventure. There is also a number of amazing accommodation options available that offer the perfect end to an adventurous day.

Life is short and we should all be exploring as much of the globe as we possibly can whenever possible, and these unique destinations are a great start.

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12 Strange Places from Around the World You Should Take the Time to See

Enjoy exploring the more unusual tourist destinations? Here are a few you should definitely add to your list.

There are so many fascinating, weird and wonderful places to see across the globe and if you prefer to see the attractions that you won’t find in your usual tourist guide books, here are a few unusual and unique sites to add to your growing list.

  • Die Rakotzbrück

Location: Germany

Constructed during the 19th century, Die Rakotzbrück has a reflection that merges with the water below, forming a perfect stone circle, regardless of where you view it from. Many of the locals also refer to it as ‘Devil’s Bridge’ because it can only have been built by the hands of the devil. The bridge is definitely more renowned for its aesthetics than functionality and makes for beautiful photos.

Source: https://imgur.com/gallery/sAdcfgh

  • Spotted Lake

Location: British Columbia

During the summer months, the water evaporates, leaving behind small mineral pools of different colours. The lake is said to have the highest natural concentration of this mineral in the world, which is why it was used to manufacture ammunition during the First World War. To see this unusual lake, you would need to head out on Highway 3 outside of Osoyoos. The native Okanagan people believe this unusual lake to be sacred and use the mud to treat aches and ailments.

Source: https://charismaticplanet.com

  • Tunnel of Love

Location: Ukraine

When you first see this tunnel in Ukraine, it looks like something out of a fairy-tale. The tunnel is actually a section of industrial railway that links Klevan and Orzhiv. The rails are about five kilometres in length and are surrounded by green arches. The trees were deliberately planted during the Cold War to conceal the fact that they were transporting military hardware. While the rails are still in use, it’s a very romantic place to take a walk.

Source: https://ukraine-kiev-tour.com

  • Thor’s Well

Location: Oregon

Also known as Spouting Horn, Thor’s Well is a massive sinkhole that sucks in water and shoots it out with great force. To see this natural phenomenon, you would need to take the Captain Cook Trail from the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area. It is absolutely fascinating but also dangerous, which is why visitors are advised to keep their distance, especially during high tide. Sinkholes like this usually start out as caves but once the roof of the cave collapses, it causes suction.

Source: http://bestofthenorthwest.com/discover-thors-well/

  • Jellyfish Lake

Location: Palau

Palau is home to over 70 marine lakes and one of them is filled to the brim with colourful jellyfish. Even though they thought the lake’s marine life was coming to an end in 2012, jellyfish numbers have grown and the lake is now open to the public again. And you don’t need to worry about the jellyfish stinging you either.

Source: geek.com

  • Sea of Stars

Location: Maldives

Vaadhoo Island in the Maldives attracts millions of visitors every year because of the bioluminescent sea plankton that light up the water. Most people say that the best time to see the plankton in their full glory is between August and November but this has been known to vary. Not only is it romantic but this destination makes for amazing photos.

Source: https://www.wanderpig.com/sea-of-stars/

  • The Hand in the Desert

Location: Chile

Created by Chilean sculptor Mario Irarrázabal, the Hand in the Desert is an unusual piece of art that is situated in the middle of the Atacama Desert, a few miles outside of Antofagasta. The artist’s work is usually linked to human suffering, with this sculpture perfectly capturing feelings of loneliness and isolation.

Source: https://www.suitcaseandi.com

  • Huashan Mountain

Location: China This is definitely one for the daredevils. Huashan Mountain is home to one of the most treacherous hiking trails in the world. Located near Huayin in the Shaanxi province, the mountain has a lot of significant religious history and is considered one of the five most sacred mountains in the country.

Source: https://www.nomadasaurus.com

  • Plain of Jars

Location: Laos

In the Xieng Khouang Province, you will find a field filled with megalithic stone jars. Research shows that the giant jars were used during ancient funeral ceremonies to brew rice wine for giants. Even though the area was bombed during the 1960s, it is not safe for visitors once again.

Source: ancient-origins.net

  • Giant Crystal Cave

Location: Mexico

Located at Naica Mine, this amazing cave is made up of shiny mineral pillars that are rooted deep in the earth. Research shows that these pillars have been growing underneath the city for over 500,000 years. This is definitely one for the science and nature fanatics.

Source: https://cen.acs.org

  • Glass Beach

Location: California

After years of rubbish being dumped onto this beach in California, nature turned things around by breaking everything down and turning it into colourful pebbles. This glittering beach is something to behold, especially considering Mother Nature did this all on her own. Unfortunately, because people keep taking the glass pebbles home with them, you may not be able to visit this beach for much longer.

Source: allthatsinteresting.com

  • Fingal’s Cave

Location: Scotland

A lot of people have seen rounded caves but not many people have seen symmetrical square caves such as this one. Located on the tiny island of Staffa, this dramatic cave is comprised entirely of hexagonal basalt columns that formed when a single lava flow cooled around 60 million years ago. You will only be able to enter the cave at low tide and will need to arrange a tour.

Source: https://www.visitscotland.com

Now, all that’s left for you to do is decide which one of these sites you would like to see first. Happy travels!

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5 Ways to Reset Your Internal Sleep Clock While Travelling

Jet lag

Jet lag can be a nightmare but it is possible to get proper rest while traveling internationally.

There are few things that can match the excitement of planning an international trip. Unfortunately, those feelings of excitement and adventure are often met with fatigue upon arrival.

You didn’t manage to get much sleep on the plane and now your body feels slightly hungover – welcome to the world of jet lag.

Anytime your time zone shifts more than two hours, jet lag becomes highly likely, and the more time zones you cross, the worse it gets. If you will be traveling to a time zone that will require you to go to bed earlier, jet lag can feel even worse. This is because it’s much easier to delay your bedtime than forcing your body to go to bed earlier.

Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to alleviate the symptoms associated with jet lag.

How to Prevent Jet lag from Disrupting Your Sleep Cycle

  • Plan Ahead

To minimize the effects of jet lag, it helps to start adjusting your sleep schedule several days before your trip. Go to bed a little earlier or later every day to help your body’s internal clock get closer to your destination’s time zone.

To minimize the effects of jet lag, it helps to start adjusting your sleep schedule several days before your trip
To minimize the effects of jet lag, it helps to start adjusting your sleep schedule several days before your trip
  • Use Lighting to Your Advantage

Some experts recommend manipulating light to help your internal clock get back on track. Your body reacts to the daily cycles of lightness and darkness, which means you can use this to your advantage while traveling. Get out into the bright sunlight in the morning and spend as much time as you can in natural light throughout your day. Start surrounding yourself with dimmer lights as the day progresses or as you want to start feeling more relaxed and sleepy. Once you’re ready to sleep, or at least try to sleep, make sure that the room is completely dark.

  • Consider Fasting Before Your Flight
Because digestion and metabolism also play a role in your sleep cycles
Because digestion and metabolism also play a role in your sleep cycles

Because digestion and metabolism also play a role in your sleep cycles, it is possible to use food to reset your internal clock and minimize the symptoms associated with jet lag. According to a study by Harvard Medical School, fasting for about 16 hours before or during your flight could reduce the effects of jetlag. For example, you could eat a very late lunch/early dinner at about 4pm and only eat breakfast again at 8am. By getting into your usual breakfast, lunch, and dinner times in the new time zone, your circadian (sleep) rhythms will benefit too.

  • Ask Your Physician about a Melatonin Supplement

Natural sleep aids such as Melatonin can be a big help while you’re traveling. Melatonin helps your body’s internal clock sync up to your new time zone and is particularly helpful if you’re crossing five or more zones. Speak to your general physician about whether Melatonin is a viable option for you.

  • Stay Up a Full Day or Night

Sometimes the best way to avoid jet lag is to force your body to adapt to the new time zone. Pulling an all-nighter or staying up all day could be helpful and make it easier for your body to adjust. You are going to be tired though, so make sure that you’re not doing anything that will put you in harm’s way.

Now that you know how you can minimize the effects of jetlag, you can look forward to loads more sleep and energy on your next trip.

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Staying Safe During Spain’s Listeria Outbreak

Bacteria

If you’ll be traveling to Spain in the near future, this is what you need to know about the country’s biggest-ever listeria outbreak.

Spain is currently in the throes of its biggest listeria outbreak to date and holidaymakers are being warned to stay safe and keep an eye out for symptoms.

Over 150 people have already been affected by the outbreak and over 500 patients are currently being tested for the infection. Andalusia currently has the largest number of listeria patients but there have been other reported cases in regions such as Madrid, Catalonia and Extremadura.

What is Listeria?

Listeria is an infection that is caught from eating foods that contain a specific type of bacteria (Listeria monocytogenes). Deli meats and unpasteurized cheeses are the most common carriers of the bacteria.

Listeria is an infection that is caught from eating foods that contain a specific type of bacteria

 In most instances, the infection only results in mild illness but it can be much more dangerous to those with compromised immune systems, including pregnant women and patients over the age of 65. Well over a thousand people contract listeriosis every year, a hundred of which succumb to their symptoms.

Listeria is a food-borne disease. The only exception is in the case of pregnant women, who can transfer the infection to their baby. Listeria is not contagious.

If you’ll be traveling to Spain in the near future, this is what you need to know about the country’s biggest-ever listeria outbreak.
Listeria

Keep an Eye Out for These Symptoms

Symptoms of listeria last for several days and include a lot of flu-like symptoms such as fever, muscle aches, nausea and diarrhoea.

In some severe cases, the bacteria can cause brain-related conditions such as abscesses and meningitis.

Symptoms will generally show up a few days after you’ve eaten contaminated food but in some cases, symptoms only show up a month after infection.

Listeria infections can last anywhere from one to six weeks, depending on how severe each case is.

Protecting Yourself from Listeriosis While on Vacation in Spain

Here are a few tips that can reduce your risks of contracting listeria.

  • If you will be purchasing and eating any fresh produce, make sure that you run it underwater for at least a minute and dry it before consuming it.
  • Thoroughly cook any raw meat
  • Think twice about eating soft cheeses, sprouts, deli meats and hot dogs
  • Ensure your hands are clean before handling any food
  • Since listeria can still grow in a refrigerator, it’s best to clean the shelves and walls with soap and water before storing any food in it
  • Avoid restaurants with buffets, salad bars and unclean surfaces
  • Always place food in a closed plastic bag before throwing it away
  • Keep all cooking surfaces clean before and after food preparation

Listeria is not necessarily a serious infection but it’s not something you want to deal with while you’re on vacation, which is why it’s best to know what to look out for. If you notice any symptoms, contact a doctor in your area using the Air Doctor app.

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Galapagos Islands – pictures of a heavenly destination

Galapagos Islands – pictures of a heavenly destination

The Galapagos Islands is a top travel destination for good reason. This is why you should plan a trip of your own.

The Galapagos Islands is a destination unlike any other. Many travelers say that it has a unique aura and once you arrive, you soon forget about the rest of the world.

If you have an interest in Charles Darwin, evolution, history and adventure, you’re going to love this travel destination even more.

The Galapagos Islands are located just over 900km west of Ecuador and are a mecca for those who want to spend time in nature amongst unique wildlife. It’s also one of the few places in the world where the animals don’t have a problem being around humans, which means you can get up close to a lot of beautiful wildlife.

The Galapagos isn’t the most affordable destination though, purely because it’s not easily accessible but there are ways to plan a vacation that won’t break the bank. There is a limit on how many people are allowed to arrive on the islands, which is why the landscape still looks so pristine.  

Credit: Hurtigruten

Why the Galapagos Islands Should Be Your Next Travel Destination

If you like the idea of going a little off the beaten track for your next vacation, here’s why you should consider the Galapagos Islands.

  • Beautiful white-sand beaches. While the wildlife is one of the main attractions, travelers can also look forward to spending quiet time on the beaches filled with fine, white sand. Simply walking along the beaches is an experience all its own.
  • See what Darwin saw. In 1835, Charles Darwin sailed to the Galapagos Islands for the volcanoes but ended up collecting several Galapagos species for use in his research and to illustrate his controversial theories, which now have a place in natural history.
  • Take a small cruise. The island destination is well known for its small cruises, which can take you to see most of the archipelago’s 18 islands. The best hiking routes are also only accessible by boat.
  • Unique wildlife. The wildlife on the Galapagos Islands is just spectacular. In fact, the islands are home to species that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. From 200-year old tortoises and an abundance of fish to huge iguanas and sea lions, travelers can look forward to a unique wildlife experience.
Sea lion underwater San Cristobal Island
  • Stunning views. If photography is your thing, you’re going to love this destination. The stunning views are enough of a reason to visit the Galapagos. The views from the top of the volcanic cone are something else.
  • Snorkeling and diving. Explore some of the most untouched reefs in the world and get up close and personal with the marine life that calls the waters home, including sharks and manta rays.
  • Scenic hikes. Take a hike through a unique landscape that’s filled with beautiful fauna and flora. While you can’t walk on your own, it’s easy to arrange a guided hike with a local.

Galapagos Islands: Quick Travel Tips

Here are a few tips that will help you plan your trip to the Galapagos Islands:

  • Avoid the busy seasons. Summer and the winter holidays are the busiest and most expensive times to travel to the islands.
  • Resources are limited. You are heading to a remote destination so be prepared for certain types of food to run out and for there to be little to no internet access.
  • Do some reading. To really appreciate the wildlife, fauna and flora, do a bit of research on your way to the islands or while you’re there. Otherwise, hire a tour guide if you can.
  • Don’t touch the wildlife. The primary rule in Galapagos is to leave everything as you found it. You also can’t touch the animals.
  • Take a cruise. If your budget allows for it, take a cruise as this is the best way to see as much of the islands as possible during your trip. Some of the best activities are also only accessible via boat.
  • Choose your season. The islands only have two seasons: hot/wet and dry. Hot/wet is from December to May and is ideal for swimming and snorkeling. The Dry season is from June to December, is slightly cooler and the marine life is bountiful.
  • Pack strategically. Some of the must-pack items for travelers heading to the islands are reef-safe sunscreen, comfortable walking shoes, appropriate clothing for warm/wet weather and an underwater camera.
Christmas Iguana on Espanola Island in Galapagos Islands. Male Marine Iguana with Sally Lightfoot Crabs in background. Amazing animals wildlife and nature on Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, South America.
Animal wildlife nature photographer tourist on Galapagos looking at Galapagos Sea Lion taking photos on Galapagos cruise ship adventure travel holidays vacation, Espanola Island, Ecuador South America
Galapagos prickly pear on Rabida Island in Galapagos National Park, Ecuador. It is endemic to the Galapagos Islands.

The Galapagos Islands are spectacular and everyone should experience it at least once in their lives. With a little planning and maybe some extra budgeting, this will definitely be one of your most memorable vacations.

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World’s Largest Indoor Waterfall Opens in Singapore’s Changi Airport

in Singapore’s Changi Airport

After four long years of construction, the Jewel Changi Airport is open for all to enjoy.

Even though Singapore’s Changi Airport has been dubbed the world’s best airport for several years now, this hasn’t stopped them from making this space bigger, better and more beautiful.

Jewel Changi Airport is officially open and the new features have taken this space to a whole new level that both locals and travellers can enjoy. Along with helping travellers reach their destinations, the airport now also offers an array of dining, shopping and entertaining experiences in an almost surreal setting.

The scenes that you encounter when entering the new Jewel complex makes it feel like you’re experiencing a whole different world. Changi Airport is now home to the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, which drops 130 feet from an oculus.

The Vortex waterfall is surrounded by a four-story garden called the Shiseido Forest Valley, which is made up of over a thousand trees, providing visitors and travellers with a breath taking indoor forest experience. There is also a 165-foot sky bridge, giant slide and two mazes.

The flow of the waterfall is controlled using rainwater collection tanks, with the excess rainwater being used to irrigate the forest.

Because the 10-story building was constructed using glass and an aluminium and steel framework, it lets in a lot of natural light, which just adds to the beauty of the natural features within.

At night, a sound and light show lights up the tumbling waterfall, providing visitors with a whole new eye-catching experience. Travellers and locals can also enjoy an 11-cinema IMAX theatre, art installations, a number of restaurants and bars and the Changi Studio Experience, which includes interactive games and immersive shows.

Some of the additional offerings that have been added at the airport include:

  • Early check-in services
  • Baggage storage facilities
  • YOTELAIR hotel with over 100 rooms
  • Changi lounge for cruise passengers
  • Power bank loans

Airports aren’t generally seen as fun but Changi Airport is changing the game. The Jewel is only 30 minutes away from Singapore’s central business district, so locals can enjoy this new complex just as much as international travellers can. In fact, the airport is already attracting thousands of local visitors, especially because Singapore isn’t a big place to begin with, so having an attraction such as this is a big deal.

Changi Airport currently connects to over 400 cities globally and is the seventh busiest airport in terms of international traffic. If you’re planning to visit Singapore in the near future, you may want to take some time out to experience all that the Jewel has to offer.