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4 Tips for Legoland Germany

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1. Staying Over Night.  The Legoland Hotel was something special.  I had images of sleeping on a lego bed, but it was a normal bed; ha ha!  The decor however was so great for the kids, with little pieces of lego art everywhere, and lego to play with in the room.  The only thing is you had to book a breakfast sitting.  We do like to just chill and get up to our own beat, but that was not possible.  We booked the later setting and we had a late check out, but it felt restrictive.

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2. Birthday booking.  I booked a birthday package and was not disappointed.  They made a birthday room for my daughter, she had her own bottle of birthday bubbly to share with her brother and friends, as well as a birthday present.  It was super special and made her day.

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3. Separate parts shop.  This is where my husband got his big kid on, and came into his own element.  So to say the family a lego fanatics is an understatement.  We like to build cars, canons, catapults and anything that can be concocted in the imagination.  So in the lego shop you can buy multiples of parts, some special parts are restricted to a 100 grams, but if you are there as a family, you can still get what you need.  It's well worth a visit if you are looking for certain parts that you don't necessarily find enough of in lego sets.  The kids are also into We Do and code what they want their creations to do, you can see videos on my instagram.

4. VIP Gold Pass Token.  I know it's costly but it was worth ever penny.  We never waited for a ride and did all rides in one day:Ninjago was so cool.  If you can afford it, I would highly recommend booking a gold pass.  You reserve a ride and when it beeps you walk into the entrance, the max we then waited was maybe 4 minutes.  Time is precious!  My parents were with us for this trip as it was my daughters birthday, and we both said "we never had this in my day", but they loved it.  My 66 year old Dad kept hoping onto all the rides.

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The only thing that could be improved was the food, like most theme parks the food is much to be admired.  The food however at the hotel in the evening was very good.

21 Top Tips for Date Weekend/ Week in New York

1. Johns Coffee Shop for breakfast with the locals

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2. Breakfast at Jacks Wife Freda 

 Lush fresh and healthy bowls.

Lush fresh and healthy bowls.

 After a healthy bowl I of course indulged; rich but devine!

After a healthy bowl I of course indulged; rich but devine!

3. Jimmy for an adult night out, the ability to lounge, a roof top pool and view

 Late night drinks in Jimmys with my bestie, we flew in from Zurich and she flew in form Oxford.

Late night drinks in Jimmys with my bestie, we flew in from Zurich and she flew in form Oxford.

 Art installation as you go up to Jimmys.

Art installation as you go up to Jimmys.

4. The Waverly Inn we ended up eating here twice filled with art character drawings you have to pay a visit, great food and a little yard where the carriages used to come into New York.  Steeped in history.

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5. Speak easys where you can buy home made gin, protruding brick walls when you walk around greenwich village.

 Walking around there was so much history in the architecture that was unexpected.  Rich in history you just have to open your eyes.

Walking around there was so much history in the architecture that was unexpected.  Rich in history you just have to open your eyes.

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6. Rockafella for the art deco and the Rainbow Rooms

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7. Empire estate building

8. Statue of liberty I'd seen before, it was a foggy day and my bestie wanted to see.  It was the funniest inveigling moment when you could see nothing it was so bad. Note to everyone do not go up on a foggy day, but when it is clear the views are well worth it.  We did have such a laugh though!

9. Time Square - from the Marriott gives you 360 views of the city without the hustle and bustle

 One picture in Time Square then up to the 360 views of the city with cocktails.

One picture in Time Square then up to the 360 views of the city with cocktails.

10. The High Line started as a regeneration project by 2 individuals, and the community then restored and regenerated the space along the high line.  We had a relaxing walk all the way along, and enjoyed finding exhibits and just letting life pass us by.

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12. Little Italy and China Town for a little of the cultural make splashes, street art and maybe grab a coffee in Little Italy.  China Town had become very run down from when I was last there in my teens but still work a look.

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 The different feel of the village at night.

The different feel of the village at night.

13. Bath Tub Gin had great cocktails, but you need to book to get a table.  It was so packed we decided to leave after a few cocktails.

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14. The Musket Rooms highly recommended, it was one of our favourites the food was amazing.  If you follow me on instagram you will see I could not choose which dish to post, so I posted them all.  Well worth it.

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15. Ta Combi recommended for dinner and drinks, it was so fresh and so cheap mexican food with a great ambience.  

 Great little Mexican so fresh, cheap and full of atmosphere.  We visited here twice as it had such a buzz at night.

Great little Mexican so fresh, cheap and full of atmosphere.  We visited here twice as it had such a buzz at night.

16. Caribbean gourmet try the banana bread from Heavywoods Bushwick.  We were so full after Jacks Wife Freda we walked, found a Danish artisan bakery my husband wanted to try and then Heavywoods.  The banana bread was so delicious, and we saw the other guests dishes that next time we will definitely book there for breakfast.

 We walked a lot sometimes 20,000 steps on my Apple Health App this was on the way to Heavywood, and you find so many little gems like this.

We walked a lot sometimes 20,000 steps on my Apple Health App this was on the way to Heavywood, and you find so many little gems like this.

17. Central Park walking central park was great, the restaurant very over rated.  I would pass. We did it for the a friends 40th, but the other restaurants we visited were far more delicious.

18. The 9/11 memorial.  This was one of the most somber places I have been, but the memorial and the never ending hole that it has left is a place to reflect.  You can then head to the financial district, which is weird as the commercialism and divides in the world are kind of depressing/

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19. The Intrepid Museum.  I'm married to a geek but even I got lost in this museum for the good part of the day.  It was fascinating not just the machinery, but all the stories and how they lived during the hanger in World War II.

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20. Shopping.  Of course my Marc Jacobs broke which was a disaster.  However, Macy's was run-in a 25% reduction of everything.  That was just half a day of buying more than a bag.  I discovered Rachel Roy, just how do we not have that label in Europe! People trees and basically you will find a lot of your favourite brands in New York. I basically topped up my wardrobe as I never get to shop and try things on in a shop (online shopping is typically my go to as a mum). 

21.  Go to the main station and look up at the stars.  Keep an eye on your pockets, but you will find little finds like these.

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5 Tips for Antigua Guatemala

1. Rum.  The bars in Antigua and Guatemala City are full of amazing rum, I'd never tasted a Mojito like it

2. Visit The Plaza Central Park and chill out.

3. I recommend you stay at the Monastery not only a great hotel, but steeped in history and great food.

4. Cathedral de Santiago is picturesque inside and out.

5. The street markets are full of interesting cloths, food and jewellery.  You d get a lot of people approaching you so be prepared to say no.

I was down to do a trek on one of the volcanic mountains, but my our son got sick with an ear infection his health was obviously more important.  What I experience of Guatemala was amazing and is on my list to go back.

 The architecture in the old church was amazing

The architecture in the old church was amazing

 Expect regal religious relics and catholic symbolism

Expect regal religious relics and catholic symbolism

 Inside the monastery was fascinating and we had a delicious meal there, I wish we would have stayed the night.

Inside the monastery was fascinating and we had a delicious meal there, I wish we would have stayed the night.

 Religious symbolism on the streets

Religious symbolism on the streets

9 Top Tips for Date Weekend in Porto Portugal

1. Intercontinental Hotel Porto.  The intercontinental suite was amazing. We have an ambassador card well worth the investment as your room is always upgraded so our suite was amazing!  The weekend was so special, with lay ins in luxury and a late night jazz bar.

 View from our hotel room

View from our hotel room

2. Walking around all the architecture.  When we are away even with kids, or on a date weekend we love just walking around.  Life has a different pace just taking the cultures, people, smells and architecture in. Porto has this amazing blue and white tile work.

 The blue tiling facade which is everywhere and just gorgeous 

The blue tiling facade which is everywhere and just gorgeous 

 Fantastic architecture everywhere just explore!

Fantastic architecture everywhere just explore!

3.  There is an old small bookshop that was so cool.

 Loved this book store

Loved this book store

4. The railway station.  The art work in the rail station was well worth a visit, beware of pick pockets as ever.

 Inside the train station

Inside the train station

5. Restaurant ODE okay so in porto I fell in love with molasses bread and sheep cheese, you will no what I mean when you visit.  This stuff us phenomenal.  I got the concierge to book ahead as these restaurants really get booked up.

6. Restaurant OPaparico.  This was out of the way but amazing. Again I got the concierge to book.

 The entrees in the restaurants were always so fresh, having some sheeps cheese again!

The entrees in the restaurants were always so fresh, having some sheeps cheese again!

7. River tour.  We did the 6 bridges river tour, just relaxed back and soaked in the atmosphere. The  buildings were interesting as you could see the lack of funds to invest or renovate, but there was still so much beauty in the place. 

 The 6 bridges boat tour where you get to see the buildings in their full beauty, but can see the renovation needed.

The 6 bridges boat tour where you get to see the buildings in their full beauty, but can see the renovation needed.

 Just 2 of the 6 bridges.

Just 2 of the 6 bridges.

8. Port tasting. We went tasting port after the river tour and it was so smooth.  

 We tried the port at Porto Calem

We tried the port at Porto Calem

9. Tour of Porto we took the bus tour and in some ways got to see the whole of porto, in others it was such a short weekend, we wish we would have stopped a bit more between stops especially the beach,

 The bus tour took us past beaches and fishing men.

The bus tour took us past beaches and fishing men.

Badenfahrt the festival that happens only every 10 years (kids perspective)

Badenfahrt is the festival that happens only every 10 years.  It's a unique, special and I would even go as far to say spectacular festival in Switzerland.  There is an eclectic mix of music, food, bars, exhibitions, fair grounds and activities. 

My kids favourite things were:

1. Kids disco

2. The fairground had so may rides for the kids from mini rollercoasters, merry-go-rounds, water-balls, heater shelters and the list is endless

3. Music stages (we attended the free ones but you can pay for access, and also go at night)

4. The book bar and cafe to chill out

5. The children's association area with circus equipment to try and climbing

My tip is to take a spare water bottle.  Switzerland is full of free fountains and at 4CHF a bottle its easier to fill up.  We take the kids everywhere as we have no grandparents here; the kids love it.  We will go to Badenfahrt again before it closes for a date night, but even in the day the atmosphere was amazing.  The bands were buzzing and in Switzerland everything is pretty safe.  Of course things are crowded so always keep an eye on the kids, this is just the nature of being a mother.

 Street art between Badenfahrt exploring the main stages and sections with the kids, there was music galore: soul, jazz, folk, rock....

Street art between Badenfahrt exploring the main stages and sections with the kids, there was music galore: soul, jazz, folk, rock....

 So many fair rides for the kids

So many fair rides for the kids

 A children's area with circus school, climbing walls, skate park and an imagination treasure trove for kids

A children's area with circus school, climbing walls, skate park and an imagination treasure trove for kids

5 reasons not to miss the Glauker Festival (Magical Festival)

The Glauker festival is one of a kind.  We discovered it about 5 years ago as the kids were allowed to touch, feel and see performing arts, magic and real imagination.  This year there were 5 reasons not to miss it, and here is the pick of the best bits:

1. The kids having to make their own candy floss, nothing in life that is worth it comes without hard work ;).

 You have to ride for your own candy floss

You have to ride for your own candy floss

 Nothing in life comes for free

Nothing in life comes for free

2. See and hear a band of geese, this is the stuff of fairy tales and here anything is possible for the kids.

3. Ride a self powered train.  Last year it was a self powered carousel that was just magical.

4. Robot giraffes out of Africa.  These were life like Giraffe robots making their way down the middle of a historic Swiss town, the kids were in wonderland.

5.  There are so many performing artists, clowns and acts not to miss.

Look out for this festival in 2018.

7 Top Tips for Family Trips to Copenhagen Denmark

We got married in Copenhagen, it's one of our other homes and one of our favourite cities. As well as visiting friends and family when we go there, we also like to visit other parts of Seeland, and Copenhagen so the kids stay in touch with their routes; and their viking ;).  Here are our top tips.

1. Tivoli - Tivoli is the only theme park I know in the heart of the city. It's amazing and full of rides, experiences, chilling in the gardens and listening to a show.  There are several great restaurants.  You will not regret going here with the kids.

2. The Blue Planet Aquarium - strangely even open on Danish Christmas which is celebrated on the 24th.  So in our house Christmas lasts a longer time 2 days!  However, one Christmas we landed and grandad or Far Far needed more time to prepare.  We went to the aquarium and the kids loved it, there was so much to see and do.

3. The viking museum.  You will need to hire a car but well worth a visit on a good day.  There's really cool brunch place near by before you go in, and the museum is full of things to see, do and even dress up.  Here you can row a viking boat and make a boat.  There's pieces of wood, saws, nails and hammers left there.  This becomes a bit of a competition and a great activity with the kids to make your own viking boat that can float.

4. Open sandwiches are a must to try.  Eva Davidson is my favourite, which my husband took me to way before we had the kids.  I'm not a fan of bread, but Danish bread is just awesome and her sandwiches are like a work of art!

5. There are so many great restaurants, and not just Noma.  Tonys is where we had our pre wedding party.  We love cheap and cheerful placed too like Sticks and Sushi with the kids, and Lagkagehuset as my husband misses Danish pastries, so much so that he taught himself to make them!

6. With kids I would do the bus tour, as in reality the little mermaid is small.  There are so many great places to see: the navy quarters, the queens palace and all the great danish architecture.

7. Time is also worth being spent just chilling out at Nyhavn.

 

 My daughter getting a hug from Rasmus Klump Bamse which is a Danish kids book and TV character at Tivoli

My daughter getting a hug from Rasmus Klump Bamse which is a Danish kids book and TV character at Tivoli

Top 3 Mobility Hacks from a Family that's Travelled 1000's of miles

We travel pretty much all the time, and the kids are so used to it so we can pack light and do hand luggage.  There are 3 takes that have stood us in good stead for all our travels.

1. The Trunki changed our travel as 3 years ago as sleepy, tired and moony kids to be honest are no fun in airports.  Ours kids race each other and love being pulled which makes easier and quicker to get from one gate to the other, or even get through immigration.  Secondly, you can keep track of them.  Thirdly they may be tired and on the Trunki they always perk up if awake, or I can wake them. No '3' is what I resort to with a sleeping child.  Finally, they can pack what they need which has taught mine how to pack, what they have to versus want to take.  So they can only take what there is space for in the Trunki, but they need things like under wear and a toothbrush if we are only flying hand luggage (sometime we have checked in luggage and of course it's full of their favourite toys, books and colouring).

2. The Manduca which carries them on your back or tummy, for mine the favourite is the tummy as the love nestling in my boobs.  The picture probably does how much I have used this justice, and to beware he/she is probably towards the end of life.  However, even in July this year we arrived in Northern Denmark at midnight, because there was no direct flights.  On the first transfer the plane was late and then kept the next flight open for 10 minutes to make the connecting flight.  So one on the Trunki ( who was still awake), and another in the Manduka.  On reflection this must have been hilarious watching a Mummy who already has a size G bust, with a a 4 year old running through the airport; but we made it!  After 7 hours of travelling there was no waking the children.  So the final walk out was easier.

3.  Finally, and as they've grown older these are a god send.  I remember when we went to Australia with my youngest and just hauling a car seat it was a nightmare.  Rentals charge a fortune, and when you land they often do not have the right one for the age group which infuriates me, as we always pre-ordered.  It's  a post for another topic as the safety of kids is paramount, but often they do not have the right seat.  So 'Mifold' are just genius and fit into my handbag.  European safety approved, easy to use, store and whip in and out these have made our travel so much easier.

 

 Our Trunki's may be a bit warn but they've done 1000's of miles and rock and rolled our kids around many an airport. 

Our Trunki's may be a bit warn but they've done 1000's of miles and rock and rolled our kids around many an airport. 

8 Top Tips for Family Holidays in Ibiza

I took my two little ones to Ibiza for a yoga holiday and surprised myself with how much it has, as opposed to my raving days when I partied on the island so many times pre motherhood.

1. Breakfast: Santa Gertrudis - Bar Costa - get a sandwich with ham & cheese - best sandwiches on the island - homemade bread.

2. Go to the pirate tower with view on the magical island Es Vedra - It’s hidden, so you have to drive to Cala D’Hort and then follow the road up towards Eivissa - around 7800 m (from Cala D’Hort), You can turn right into a small private street (in front of a left turn of the main road - you also see the top of Es Vedra from there) - follow the road until there is a little roundabout where you can park - then follow the little rocky way and you will end on a beautiful plateau, 243 m above sea level, where you can look at Es Vedra… from there follow the way on your left up until you reach the pirate tower… MUST DO!

3. Dinner: Santa Gertrudis - best beef of the island (if you're a beef lover) and not much known by tourists. Restaurant CAN CAUS - order the beef filet that you can BBQ on the table…

4. Take the boat to Formentera - best place for the kids to play in the turqoise water. I would do this from Cala Llonga at 9:45 am - you can easy park there and the boat takes an hour. Also a nice beach.

5. Wednesday: Visit - the Hippy Market in Es Canar (Punta Arabi) - it’s the biggest hippy market of the island. My kids loved it and we had to buy so many Ibiza clothes… After that you walk through Es Canar to a small Italian restaurant on the right side. 

This restaurant is just a few meters before the new Jacaranda lounge - actually also a nice place (not so good food), but a great pool bar with Sangria Cava (Champagne) and our kids loved to swim in this pool.

6. Nassau Beach Club Great beach where the kids can play.

7. If you love Sea Food - the Paella at Cala’Hort is great.

8. When I used to go to Ibiza pre kids I would head Cafe Del Mar, or Cafe Mambos.  However, we found a great place to watch the sunset, soak in Ibiza with the kids.  The kids loved to go out with us in the evening, so we went to some bars, lounge clubs that had live music or good DJ’s.  I took the kids to Kumaharas which had DJs, acrobats, fire dancers, little shops, a lunge area to watch the sunsets, as well as a restaurant and a stall selling nutella pancakes into the early hours.  The kids loved it dancing to the live DJ and saxophonist.  

 

 The Beach by Nassau Beach Club

The Beach by Nassau Beach Club

 Chilling a Kumaharas

Chilling a Kumaharas

 Drinks at Nassua

Drinks at Nassua

 The food was excellent at Kumaharas

The food was excellent at Kumaharas

 Even after dark there were large lounge areas for us to chill out with the kids to listen to the Dj's and see artists.

Even after dark there were large lounge areas for us to chill out with the kids to listen to the Dj's and see artists.

WHAT IF I WANTED THE TOP 10 HOLIDAY DESTINATIONS FOR VALUE 2014

We finally booked our holiday but with no sun we are taking another break last minute. So this year I thought it was time to write a blog on affordable destinations, where you can travel on a budget but still have an amazing time. 

Last year we blogged on this topic, but Spain is no longer number 1, and this year it’s Bulgaria. 2014 Post Office World Wide Holiday Costs Barometer provides the cost measurement.  The cost per day includes: coffee, beer, soft drink, wine, water, sun cream, cigarettes (although you could give them up and spend it on something nice) and a 3 course meal for 2 adults. 

The cost per day has gone up from 2013 from £36.14 a day to £43.26. That is in line with the overall inflation affecting us globally, but unfortunately people’s salaries not increasing at the same pace and in some cases declining. So getting the most for your money is even more important.

We are often so focused on the cost of the travel and hotel, it’s important to consider what we spend when we are there – The Total Cost.

  1. Bulgaria £43.26 a day

I can now see a trip to Sofia in the horizon given the value that it offers, and from reviews it has the geography, history, architecture and culture, which would make for a great break. Bulgaria moved form being 2013’s number 6 on the Holiday Cost Barometer to number 1.

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  1. Turkey £54.11

Turkey has moved from the number 10 spot in 2013 to number 2 in 2014. There are of course the typical holiday resorts, but Turkey has many hidden treasures.  The obvious is Istanbul.  Turkey is one of the best cities I have visited, so much so that I have had to do it 3 times.  The summer and winter clubs made the romantic weekend each time.

A not so known destination is the The Cappadocia region of turkey where you will find hotels carved in rocks, with rooms starting from 20 Euro’s.

Turkey

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3 and 4. Costa del Sol and Costa Blanca £54.88 and £55.18 respectively

I am not sure why Spain warrants a mention twice, but the Post Office has split these two regions. This year I visited Nerja again for a girls holiday with it’s beach, caves, old town and our cozy pool with the same old couple who have run the café for a life time. Palencia for a wedding and later this year a yoga retreat in Ibiza. The tapas and wine in Spain if you find a good place can really make the holiday.

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  1. Portugal £56.44

Whether you want to go to the beach e.g. Algarve or you are interested in the history and culture it has a wealth of activities.  For example, the estate of Initiation Quinta da Regaleira in Sintra in Portugal, music and parties in Lisbon or water sports.

 Portugal

  1. Cyprus £62.35

Cyprus has great weather, beaches, walks and sights such as Limassol, Kolossi Castle, Tombs of the Kings, Monastery of Apostolos Andreas and for the kids Ostrich Wonderland Theme Park.

Cyprus

  1. Greece Crete £66.47

Greece appears again twice: split between Crete and Corfu.  I am not too sure if maps are being re-written here but the Post Office Barometer has given us a guide as to where to go in regards to value. One of my fondess memories of Greece as a whole is in Rhodes where I hired a bicycle and cycled everywhere. Greece is steeped in history so if you are planning a visit it offers great weather and beaches.

Crete

  1. Croatia £71.86

Croatia is a jewel in the crown and whether it be a city break or stay on the coast and visiting islands it gives a great welcome. There are many amazing restaurants to be found and places of natural beauty that can be discovered by foot. Dubovnik still has buildings dating back to 13th and 16th century and churches of national heritage. Wade Goddard captures the recent atrocities in the 90’s in a War Photo exhibition. On the coast islands like Korcula offer wine tasting trips and Bacvice with its beaches and water-sports. Great hikes can be found in Upper Velebit, Mala Paklenica and Velika Paklenica.

Croatia

  1. USA Orlando £76.21

As a child many of my holidays were in the States to visit family we could not afford to go on holiday without visiting family, so we were fortunate to have a large family. It was not until I saved up my own money that I first stayed in a paid apartment with 2 other friends in Ibiza. As such I had the insiders view of the USA whether that would be visiting family and hanging out in Florida, Washington, Boston, New York Visiting the museums, art galleries and restaurants in each city. Staying in the Bronx and Brooklyn with cousins. In Orlando we visited the mall a lot with our teenage cousins. I must say that is not my kind of holiday now, because I like to discover new places, history, culture and people. However, the USA has so much to offer beyond Orlando with amazing natural geographic wonders.

Orlando

10. Greece Corfu £77.34

Greece was also at number 7.

No Sun Yet... Hunt for it in September

This year there has been no summer to speak of in Switzerland.   Some one stole the sun!  I'm heading to a yoga retreat in Ibiza in September and will hopefully find the yellow stuff, for those who are searching for a bit of sun in September here are 7 top locations.

Ibiza weather average 24 degrees

Ibiza

Tunisia weather average 25 degrees

Tunisia 2

Greek Islands weather average 24 degrees

 Greece

Mauritius weather average 21 degrees

 Mauritius

Koh Samui weather average 28 degrees

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Madagascar weather average 18 degrees

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South Africa weather average 20 degrees

South Africa

 

 

Old School Kids Games to Keep Kids Occupied on Travel Journeys without the IPAD

I've just come back from the annual girls holiday and about to leave for the family holiday, this time on a long drive.  I had an interesting debate about the use of IPAD with a girlfriend as we now live outside the UK and often embark on long car journeys as well as frequent plane journeys.  Whilst some felt the iPad was not needed, it does have it's place.  In the UK we travel was limited as we were basically on an island, and in Switzerland we regularly drive to France, Italy, Austria, Germany and even Denmark, journeys can vary from 1 hour to 24 hours.  

We actually have a healthy mix of games, nursery rhymes and iPad, but to pay homage to the old school games that we played  as kids on those holiday journeys, here were my top favourites.

I Spy with my Little Eye

I spy is one of those games that you can do anywhere, improving grammar and cognitive ability. The number of players are unlimited, but there is one person who picks an object without saying what it is apart from the first letter. “ I spy with my little eye something beginning with ….” The person then has to guess the object. For example ‘T’ and the object they have to guess is “tree”

Hang Man

Is a game you can play anywhere and with unlimited players. It can be used to improve grammar, cognitive ability, spelling and even languages. The word does not have to be one that is seen but one person picks a word and then draws underscores for the number of letters in the game. The players have a limited amount of attempts to try and work out the word, the attempts are limited to drawing each part of the hang man so the base, leg, and arm of the hanging apparatus, and then each body part of a man. When a correct letter is guessed it is written in the space and then when a false letter is guessed it is written down but crossed out. In a car this game has limitations, as it is difficult for the driver to participate but great for the plane.

Colouring

A pack of pens, pencils or crayons and a colouring pad go a long way.

Card Games

Multiple games can be taught from Snap, Slap Jack, Rummy to Black Jack.

The Alphabet Game

A good game to play in the car is the alphabet game where kids have to spot license plates A-Z in order.

The Animal Game

This game can be played on any mode of transport. One-player names an animal, and the other players have to name an animal that begins with the same letter. For example, Aardvark and Antelope. This game can be used to develop different languages, for example, “Schwein und Schlanger”

Draw and Guess

Pictionary was one of my favourite games growing up and seems to have gone out of circulation, but we still have our vintage box game. On the go on the plane we can still play with a simple piece of paper. Where one person try’s to draw what the object, country or thing that they have in mind and the others have to guess.

Travel - The Top 5 Heritage Sites

There are so many places of outstanding cultural or natural beauty, but the top 5 have been identified by The World Heritage Committee as important to the common heritage of humanity.  The 2013 list identified 981 sites that may help you spark inspiration for your next holiday. 759 cultural, 193 natural, and 29 mixed properties.  The list in order: Italy, China, Spain, France and Germany.

Italy 

A staggering 49 heritage sites in total of both natural and cultural significance, not to mention the cuisine.

Manarola

Manarola Italy

Amazing Churches

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Photo Credit: Architecture Pics 

Verona

Look Amazing - Beautiful Verona, Italy

Photo Credit: Look Amazing

China 

There are 45 heritage sites the only country outside Europe in the top 5.  China has a multitude of historical sites which often have significant meanings by their colour, material and symbolism.  Some sites have been rebuilt due to fire, others are one of the 7 wonders of the world and then there is the natural beauty that can be found in their rice fields and beaches.

Red Beach

Red Beach China

Photo Credit MJiA

Tianzi Mountains

Tianzi Mountains

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Zhangye Danxia Landform

China

Photo Credit: unbelievableinfo.blogspot.it

The Great Wall of China

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Photo Credit: Great Wall Of China.org

Spain

Has 44 heritage sites with so many historical buildings and architects like Guadi.

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France 

Joint place with Germany and has 38 heritage sites of both natural beauty and historical sites.

Bourges Cathedral

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Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Germany 38 sites.

Steeped in history from the world war, natural features such as the black forest.

Bonn

Bonn

Photo Credits: Adas Meliauskas

Black Forest

Black Forest

Photo Credits: andy linden

Berlin

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Berlin - Reichstag

Reichstag

6 Travel Destinations For Those That Love Heights

Whether it is a city break, family holiday, love of architecture or excursion some of us need something to climb and get a buzz out of heights.

1. Mount Everest Himalayas between China and Nepal

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A natural wonder, at 8,848 meters it is our highest mountains.  Climbing it is not for the faint hearted it requires training, fitness and mental resilience.

2. Jacobs Ladder St Helena

699 mad made steps on the remote island of St Helena connecting Ladder Hill to the capital James Town.

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3. Sydney Harbour Bridge Walk Australia

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Modern architecture provides fantastic scenery with a walk peaks at 134 m high.

4. The Eiffel Tower Paris France

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City breaks whether it's Paris, New York, Rome, Barcelona or numerous cities offer the chance to see some amazing pieces of historic architecture.   They may not be as high as our current buildings, but at the time were a significant piece of engineering.

5. Burj Khalifia Dubai

Modern architecture.  The world's tallest building in Dubai at 828 meters.

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6. Bryce Canyon Colorado USA

The biggest cluster of these unusual-looking geological features anywhere in the world.  The erosion exposed delicate and colorful pinnacles called hoodoos which are up to 200 feet (61 m) high and span an area of 20 miles.

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What City Are You Flying To This Weekend 6-8th Sept? 10 Events To Influence You.

This Weekend Where are You Headed?  If you still haven't booked here are 10 events that might influence your choice, and if you are already headed there / live there check these out.

1. Lucerne Festival in Summer will take the centenary of this famously scandalous work as an occasion to devote itself to music associated with upheaval and times of change.

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2. London Itunes Festival is still going with its 30 nights of free music with: Queen of the Stone Age playing @ Roundhouse London 6th, Phoenix 7th and Bastille 8th.

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3. Vienna Grafenegg Festival concludes this weekend.

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4. Berlin Festival held at the airport Friday 6th with acts like Bjork, Pet Shop Boys, Blur, Casper and MIA.

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5. Paris Pub Crawl in Paris  7th.  This local organised event will get you mingling and meeting people who live in Paris.

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6. Istanbul Rock and Coke with the Arctic Monkeys andThe Prodigy

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7. Milan Formula Grand Prix 6th, 7th, 8th

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8. Sydney Marrickville Organic Market 7th 8.30 - 3.00pm

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9. California The Beach Boys @ Thunder Valley Casino 6th  and 7th 

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10. New York Live on Pier 26 @ Hudson river Park Pier on the 7th

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Chase the sun in September

August is almost over.  Where is the year going?  So where can we get that little bit more Vitamin D in September.  These weather forecasts give enough choice for the diverse traveller from beach, to safari, city break or snorkelling:

The Algrave 29 °C
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Bodrum 30 °C
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Crete 27 °C
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Hungary 23 °C
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Red Sea 33 °C
 
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Kenya 30 °C
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Australia 27 °C
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Brazil 33 °C
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The Best Pools in the World

The Best Pools in the World

When planning a holiday one of the criteria may be a great pool.  Check out some of the most amazing pools in the world.

  1. Barbados Sandy Lane has a 7,500 Sq Foot Pool and 47,000 Sq Foot Spa

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2. The Oberoi Udaivilas Palace, Udaipur in Rajasthan.  The luxurious spa with its own swimming pool overlooks the lake and is a haven of serenity. Trained therapists pamper body and soul with rejuvenating treatments.

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3. The Atlantis Resort, Paradise Island, Bahamas

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4. Six Senses Thailand.  The resort is made up of just 66 private villas, many with personal pools, which are landscaped within natural vegetation.

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5. Blue Lagoon Geothermal Resort a series of hot baths in Iceland.

Blue Lagoon

Top 4 Cities for Foodies 2013

Top 4 Cities for Foodies 2013

If you are a foodie and part of a good weekend away is great food.  These are the top Cities to visit according to the worlds top 50 restaurants for 2013. 3 are in Europe and the other is New York just incase you want to catch a red eye flight for the weekend.

1. Paris has 5 of the top 50 restaurants in the world:

L'Arpege rank 16

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Le Chateaubriand - rank 18

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L'Astrance - rank 23

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L'Atelier Saint-German De Joel Robuchon - rank 24

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Septime - rank 49

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2. New York has 4 of the top 50 restaurants in the world:

Eleven Madiso Park - Rank 5

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Per Se - Rank 11

Per Se NY

Le Bernardin - Rank 19

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Daniel - Rank 29

Daniel food 12/2008

3. Denmark has 2 of the top 50 restaurants in the world

Noma - rank 2

Noma

Geranium - rank 45

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4. London has 2 of the top 50 restaurants in the world

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal - rank 7

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The Ledbury - rank 13

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Top 8 Destinations August

If you have not booked your holiday yet and you are chasing the sun then here are the top 8 locations for sun in August; according to the weather predictions!

Galicia 26 °C

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Costa de la Luz 31 °C

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Lake Garda °C

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Lle de Re 24°C

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New England 26°C

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Sri Lanka 30 °C

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Seychelles 28 °C

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The Canadian Rockies 16 °C

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Top 5 Destinations for Snow in November

Okay so we are almost at the end of our summer holiday, but as a constant traveller we are already thinking about our next holiday.  My husband has gotten me pregnant the last two ski seasons, but this season I am so looking forward to the powder - so much; that I need to go in search of it early.

I've had a look at the weather (more than 80mm) and our usual haunts Switzerland or France do not appear.

1. Norway will apparently be covered in snow.  So you have a wide variety of choice including sea skiing.Image

2. Aosta Italy - The prices in Italy are also a little lower so help with the overall cost of the ski trip.

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3. Klagenfurt am Wörthersee

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4. Japan Furano and Myoko - get away from the normal locations to experience skiing on a different terrain and in a different culture.

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5. Whistler Canada is one of my favourite locations a West Coast Trail girl, Vancouver rocks but with this much snow it's a must.

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