Exploring Paradise: Trekking and Hiking in Mauritius

Mauritius, a land of idyllic beaches and seaside escapes, is the ideal landscape for outdoor enthusiasts; the island is home to a network of stunning trails through gorgeous terrain, perfect for trekking and hiking. Lace up your boots and discover the diverse ecosystems, forests and natural beauty of this paradise island, with the best sites to explore on your Mauritius adventures.

Tamarin Falls

Embark on a refreshing hike amidst lush rainforest to reach the cascading Tamarin Falls. Take a dip in the cool, jade waters beneath the falls or explore nearby caves to get in touch with your inner adventurer.

Z thomas, Tamarind Wasserfall unterer Bereich 2019-09-30 12, CC BY-SA 4.0

La Cambuse Beach – Royal Palms Forest Trail

Combine a pristine beachfront with a scenic hike. Follow the Royal Palms Forest Trail, a moderate trek leading to a secluded cove framed by dramatic cliffs. Relax on the white sand of La Cambuse Beach, a perfect reward for your efforts. For a touch of added convenience, book a stay at Anantara Iko Mauritius Resort & Villas, located a short drive from the forest and only steps away from the beach.

Le Morne Brabant

This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers a challenging yet rewarding hike. Ascend the slopes of Le Morne Brabant, a monolithic mountain steeped in history, and surrounded by panoramic views of the southwest coast that await those who reach the summit.

Lion Mountain

For a more family-friendly option, hike Lion Mountain, named for its resemblance to a crouching lion. The well-maintained trail offers stunning views of the surrounding area with a turquoise lagoon below, and is considerably less challenging to navigate.

Black River Gorges National Park

Finally, adventure seekers can delve into the heart of Mauritius’ wilderness at Black River Gorges National Park. Explore a network of trails ranging from easy to challenging, as you traverse through dense vegetation, cascading waterfalls, and breathtaking gorges.

Discovering the Captivating Falcon Souq in Doha – A Unique Experience for the Whole Family

Doha is a city that blends modern marvels with ancient traditions. But for a truly unique experience, look no further than the captivating Falcon Souq. Here, you will have the chance to delve into the fascinating world of falconry, a cherished tradition deeply woven into Qatar’s heritage.

A Rich Heritage

Falcons are more than just birds in Qatar and are part of a rich heritage. Not surprisingly, these winged wonders are the nation’s national bird too. Rooted in Bedouin history, falconry involved training these majestic raptors to hunt for food. Today, it’s a celebrated sport, and the Falcon Souq is well worth visiting from luxury hotels in Doha to gain insights into this tradition.

Image via pickpik

Planning Your Visit

Found within the famous Souq Waqif (also worth exploring!), the Falcon Souq is easily accessible on foot from the Corniche; one can easily plan a visit here while staying at properties like Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara. Look for the gilded plaque marking its entrance between Al Ahmed and Al Asmakh Streets. Evenings, especially Thursdays, are an ideal time to visit. Witness customers inspect falcons, their discussions with shopkeepers echoing through the air, and soak up the atmosphere of this historic marketplace.

What More to Expect

Prepare to be awestruck by the majestic birds on display. Capture incredible photographs or, under a shopkeeper’s watchful eye, have a falcon perched on your arm for a truly unforgettable experience! Take a look at the fascinating array of falconry accessories, from intricate hoods for the birds’ eyes to protective gloves for falconers. If you are lucky, you may even see a thrilling public auction where the bidding will reveal the immense value placed on these skilled predators.

The Falcon Hospital

A testament to the importance of falcons in Qatari culture, the Souq also boasts a dedicated falcon hospital conveniently located right next door. Step inside the Souq Waqif Falcon Hospital and marvel at the sight of hooded falcons – a practice used to keep them calm during the taming process. You will come across a falcon-waiting room and pharmacy, showing the care and respect these birds receive.

Don’t Miss These Exciting Activities in Bintan – Adventure-filled Getaways Await!

Bintan isn’t just about sprawling beaches and luxurious resorts, it’s an adventure playground waiting to be explored! If you are looking to get your adrenaline pumping when on holiday, these are action-packed activities you can look to try.

Fun Water Sports

The vast South China Sea surrounds this destination, and it’s calling your name! Unleash your inner speed demon with jet-skiing, wakeboarding, or knee-boarding in Bintan; things to do with the whole family on the other hand include taking banana boat rides. You can also go on fishing expeditions, explore the underwater world with snorkelling or get in some cardio while kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding!

Image via The Residence Bintan

Island-hopping Escapades

Look to stay at resorts like The Residence Bintan, which offers unforgettable island-hopping adventures. Discover hidden coves, pristine beaches, and crystal-clear waters, unlike anything you have seen before.  Imagine snorkelling amongst vibrant coral reefs or diving into the unknown – all within reach! One such gem is Mapur Island, a secluded paradise perfect for escaping the crowds and experiencing serenity.

Mangrove Cruises

Head off on a guided tour along the Kawal River. Cruise amidst a remarkable mangrove ecosystem teeming with life. Keep your eyes peeled for curious monkeys swinging through the trees, colourful kingfishers darting by, and even the occasional monitor lizard sunning itself. You can also opt for a night tour and witness the mesmerising spectacle of fireflies illuminating the river – pure magic!

Diverse Land Activities

Some resorts in Bintan offer land activities for young and old alike. Explore the jungle on an ATV or trek to the top of a hill and be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views. Meanwhile, fans of Hawkeye (or Robin Hood!) can try their hand at archery! For some friendly competition between family or friends, you can take part in paintball battles or bubble soccer for a fun-filled day that you can cherish for a lifetime.

Unveiling Adventure: Top Spots for Trekking near Siem Reap

Siem Reap, Cambodia, is a gateway to the magnificent Angkor Wat temples. But beyond these architectural wonders lie hidden gems waiting to be explored by foot. Here’s a glimpse into some of the top trekking destinations near Siem Reap.

Kulen Mountain Waterfall Trek

Kulen Mountain Waterfall in Siem Reap | Image via Wikimedia Commons

Escape the hustle and bustle with a trek to Kulen Mountain National Park. Hike through lush rainforests, encountering hidden waterfalls and refreshing pools. The cascading Kulen Waterfall, a centrepiece of the trek, offers a chance to cool off and soak in the beauty of nature. This moderate trek is perfect for those seeking a scenic escape close to a hotel in Siem Reap the likes of FCC Angkor Siem Reap.

Beng Mealea

For the adventurous soul, a trek to Beng Mealea, an ancient temple complex, offers a glimpse into forgotten history. This “abandoned Angkor” is shrouded in mystery, overgrown by jungle and teeming with wildlife. The challenging trek rewards you with the sight of a captivating temple complex, untouched by extensive restoration efforts.

Explore Local Villages and Farmlands

Immerse yourself in Cambodian culture with a trek through traditional villages and farmlands. Witness the rural way of life, interact with friendly locals, and learn about their customs and traditions. This easy-to-moderate trek offers a chance to appreciate the beauty of the Cambodian countryside and connect with its people.

Combine Trekking with Wildlife Watching

For nature enthusiasts, a trek through Phnom Krom offers a unique combination of adventure and wildlife spotting. Hike through dense forests, keeping an eye out for gibbons, hornbills, and other fascinating creatures. This moderate trek culminates in breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes, making it a truly rewarding experience.

Reasons to Fall in love with Kyoto

Kyoto, the ancient capital of Japan, embodies a rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural beauty. Nestled in a valley on the island of Honshu, Kyoto is renowned for its well-preserved temples, traditional wooden houses, and stunning gardens. As the cultural heart of Japan for over a millennium, the city offers a captivating glimpse into the country’s imperial past.

Historical Japanese Settings

Kyoto served as the capital of imperial Japan from the 8th to the 19th century and remains one of the country’s best-preserved cities. While modern buildings line its main streets, turning into the city’s alleys transports visitors to a Kyoto reminiscent of centuries past. Here, rows of traditional wooden townhouses, known as “machiya,” are either residences or have been converted into shops and restaurants. Consider staying at the Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto if you’re looking for a luxury apartments stay in Kyoto.

The Immaculate Cuisine

From casual street food to Michelin-starred restaurants, Kyoto offers a diverse array of delicious cuisine. Nishiki Market, a bustling covered food and shopping arcade is an excellent starting point for sampling affordable bites. Don’t miss the grilled fresh oysters at Daiyasu, a small seafood shop located near the eastern entrance of the market. Just off the market, hungry diners patiently wait for a seat at Ramen Sen No Kaze, renowned for its creamy soup ramen and flavorful char siu.

The Glorious Temples

In Japan, monarchy and religion are inseparable; it’s no surprise then that Kyoto, the imperial capital for a millennium, is teeming with temples and shrines—precisely 2,000, to be exact. The Fushimi Inari Shrine stands out as the city’s premier attraction for good reason. The hour-and-a-half hike up the sacred Mount Inari is flanked by thousands of vermilion torii gates, creating a breathtaking path for pilgrims and tourists alike.

Proximity to Arashiyama

Arashiyama – Image via Flickr

Arashiyama, located west of Kyoto and just 20 minutes away by train, is a charming district. The southern part of the town borders the Katsura River, while the Hozugawa River flows through the north. Mount Arashiyama provides a picturesque backdrop to the town, from which it takes its name. While Japanese tourists have been visiting for years, the district’s popularity among international visitors has grown recently, largely due to its star attraction, the Bamboo Groves.

Unveiling Serenity in the Heart of Singapore

Singapore’s cityscape holds a hidden gem – the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple.  This magnificent Buddhist temple, adorned with intricate carvings and bathed in tranquillity, offers a sanctuary for spiritual seekers and culture enthusiasts alike. Let’s delve into the captivating elements that make this temple a must-visit.

A Jewel of Tang Dynasty Architecture

Step back in time and immerse yourself in the grandeur of Tang dynasty architecture. The temple’s design, with its intricate carvings, soaring pagodas, and tiered roofs, evokes the golden age of Chinese Buddhism. Marvel at the vibrant colours and the meticulous attention to detail that adorns every corner.

A Beacon of Spiritual Significance

The temple’s namesake, the Buddha Tooth Relic, is a sacred tooth fragment attributed to the historical Buddha. Enshrined within a stupa (dome-shaped structure), the relic attracts devotees from around the world seeking spiritual blessings. Daily prayer services and meditation sessions offer a chance for inner reflection and peace.

Exploring Buddhist Culture

Image via Wikimedia Commons – Bahnfrend, Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum, Singapore, interior, 2014 (06), CC BY-SA 4.0

The Buddha Tooth Relic Temple is more than just a place of worship; it’s a cultural centre promoting Buddhist teachings and traditions, and visiting it is one of the best things to do in Singapore. Wander through the museum, showcasing artefacts and exhibits that illuminate the rich history and philosophy of Buddhism. Witness traditional Buddhist art forms, from serene sculptures to intricate paintings.

A Haven for Serenity

Amidst the bustling city, the temple provides a tranquil oasis. Lush courtyards, adorned with lotus ponds and bonsai trees, cultivate a sense of peace. Escape the urban noise if you’re staying at a property such as Dao by Dorsett AMTD Singapore and find a moment of quiet contemplation within the temple’s serene atmosphere.

Discovering the Wonders of Kenya – Wildlife Safari Adventures

 

Kenya is a land of breathtaking beauty and unforgettable experiences. Embark on a thrilling safari adventure and witness the magic of Africa firsthand. Explore the vast savannas teeming with wildlife, from the iconic Big Five to a dazzling array of birds and exotic creatures.

img via flickr

Spot the Big Five on a Thrilling Safari Adventure

Kenya is home to the legendary Big Five: lion, elephant, leopard, rhino, and buffalo. Join an experienced guide and see these magnificent creatures up close in their natural habitat.

Witness the Great Migration

Every year, between July and October, millions of wildebeest and zebra embark on an awe-inspiring journey across the savannas, known as the Great Migration. Witnessing this natural phenomenon is a truly unforgettable experience. For the best safaris in Kenya, consider researching reputable tour operators such as SkySafari that prioritise responsible tourism practices that protect the environment and support local communities.

Explore Diverse Landscapes

Kenya boasts a variety of stunning landscapes beyond the savanna. Hike through the lush rainforests of the Aberdare Mountains, or marvel at the dramatic scenery of the Great Rift Valley. Relax on the pristine beaches of Mombasa, or visit Lake Nakuru National Park, famous for its flamingo flocks.

Immerse Yourself in Kenyan Culture and Traditions

Kenya is a land of rich culture and traditions. Visit a Maasai Mara village and learn about their unique way of life. Sample delicious Kenyan cuisine, or attend a traditional dance performance.

Thrilling Adventures in Phi Phi Islands

The Phi Phi Islands, Thailand, are synonymous with breathtaking beauty and relaxation. But amidst the turquoise waters and idyllic beaches lies a world of adventure waiting to be experienced. So, leave the comfort of your sun lounger for a while and get your adrenaline pumping with these exciting activities!

Enjoy Water Sports

When you stay at a resort such as SAii Phi Phi Island Village overlooking the pristine shores of Loh Bagao Bay, the dazzling ocean becomes your playground! Delve into an intriguing underwater kingdom while snorkelling to encounter colourful coral and marine life. You can also explore mangrove forests by kayak or stand-up paddleboard, soaking in the stunning scenery as you glide through the tranquil waters.

Experience Island-hopping

Don’t forget to enjoy island-hopping adventures, one of the most thrilling things to do in Phi Phi Islands. Head to Phi Phi Leh, where you can visit Viking Cave, snorkel at Loh Sama Bay, and explore Maya Bay, the iconic location of the film, “The Beach.” Continue the adventure on Phi Phi Don, where you can spot playful monkeys at Monkey Bay and snorkel alongside black-tip reef sharks at Hin Pae. Finally, unwind with a delicious lunch on the pristine beach of Bamboo Island!

Go Scuba Diving

Take the plunge and discover the hidden wonders of a realm beneath the waves with some exhilarating scuba diving. Look for a resort that partners with a PADI-certified 5-star dive centre, offering training and certification for both beginners and pros alike. With expert guidance, you will soon have a chance to encounter a dazzling array of fish, hawksbill and green turtles, and maybe even huge whale sharks!

Explore Phi Phi Don Island

Phi Phi Don Island – Image via Flickr

Those based at a resort on Phi Phi Don Island can embark on exciting longtail boat excursions around the idyllic coastline. Cruise to charming bays, snorkel in crystal-clear waters or hike through coconut palm-covered hills amidst breathtaking panoramas. Don’t miss the chance to enjoy the inspiring sights at Phi Phi Island Viewpoints 1 and 2; the truly adventurous can hike to Viewpoint 3 and be rewarded with unparalleled vistas of the bay!

Fun Things to Do in Penang with Friends – Memories made to last

 

Penang, often called the “Pearl of the Orient,” is a vibrant island that perfectly blends modernity with history, culture, and nature. Whether you’re a group of thrill-seekers, food lovers, or culture vultures, Penang offers a plethora of activities that will make your trip with friends unforgettable. Here’s a guide to some of the most fun things to do in Penang with your friends.

img via wikipedia commons

1. Explore George Town’s Street Art
George Town, the capital of Penang, is renowned for its vibrant street art. Take a leisurely walk through the streets and hunt for the famous murals and wrought iron caricatures. These artworks are not only Instagram-worthy but also tell the stories of the city’s heritage. Don’t forget to strike a pose with the interactive murals!

2. Feast on Street Food at Gurney Drive
Penang is a food haven, and Gurney Drive is one of the best places to indulge in its culinary delights. From char kway teow to assam laksa and rojak, this food paradise offers a wide variety of local street food. Grab your friends, share a table, and try as many dishes as you can. Remember, the more, the merrier! You can also sit down for a great meal at one of the best hotels in Georgetown Penang that offer gourmet cuisine and great fusion foods like The George Penang by The Crest Collection.

3. Visit Penang Hill
For breathtaking views of the island, head to Penang Hill. Take the funicular train up the hill and enjoy the cool, refreshing air. Once at the top, explore The Habitat, a nature park with a canopy walk and treetop bridge. It’s a great spot for nature lovers and photographers alike. Enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee at one of the hilltop cafes while soaking in the panoramic views.

4. Discover the Wonderfood Museum
The Wonderfood Museum is a quirky and fun place to visit, especially for foodies. The museum showcases giant replicas of Malaysian dishes, offering a fun and educational experience about the country’s diverse culinary heritage. It’s a fantastic place to take creative photos and learn more about the local cuisine.

5. Relax at Batu Ferringhi Beach
If you and your friends are in the mood for some sun and sea, Batu Ferringhi Beach is the place to be. Relax on the sandy shores, take a dip in the ocean, or try out various water sports like parasailing, jet-skiing, or banana boating. As the sun sets, the beach transforms into a lively night market where you can shop for souvenirs and enjoy street performances.

The Ultimate Maldives Snorkeling Guide: Dive Into Paradise

The Maldives, a string of idyllic islands adorned with pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters, beckons snorkelers with a kaleidoscope of marine life. Here’s your ultimate guide to experiencing this underwater wonderland.

Finding Nemo & Beyond

The Maldives boasts coral reefs teeming with colourful fish and you may even spot the occasional turtle. Snorkelling in Maldives opens up your world to butterflyfish, angelfish, and clownfish darting amongst the coral formations, offering a breathtaking spectacle. Keep an eye out for larger residents like Moorish idols, parrotfish, and even graceful manta rays gliding by.

Image via pickpik

House Reef Paradise

Many Maldivian resorts such as Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma Maldives provide access to stunning reefs, accessible directly from the shore. This eliminates the need for boat trips, making snorkelling convenient and perfect for families or casual explorers. Explore the vibrant underwater world just steps away from your villa.

Manta Magic & Whale Shark Encounters

For an unforgettable experience, embark on a snorkelling excursion to specific locations. Hanifaru Bay, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, offers the chance to witness majestic manta rays gracefully feeding on plankton blooms. Certain areas are renowned for whale shark sightings, allowing you to swim alongside these gentle giants.

Snorkelling Essentials & Safety

Ensure a safe and enjoyable experience by packing essentials like a properly fitting mask and fins. Reef-safe sunscreen protects the delicate coral ecosystem. Opt for a guided snorkelling tour, especially for beginners, as guides can navigate the best spots and ensure your safety.