Cruising Down the Dubai Creek or Marina – An Aquatic Adventure to Cherish

Garnering a reputation as a commercial city of ultramodern architecture, luxury shopping and endless entertainment, Dubai has made its mark as a highly sought-after tourist destination. Cruise down the waterways in the city that never sleeps as you choose the Dhow Cruise as your next entertainment activity in Dubai.

 What Is It?

Reflective of the city’s history of sailing vessels that carried goods to the Arabian Gulf, the Dhow Cruises in Dubai are often led by dhow captains waiting to earn an extra buck from tourism, a result of the increasing popularity of container vessels to transport goods and services, compelling them to turn to other sources of income. This offers tourists of 5-star resorts in Dubai as well as other hotels an opportunity to secure an action-packed cruise featuring dinner, functioned by several operators.

 Features

The Dhow Cruises are located within city limits, neighbouring most lodgings like Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort. Daytime cruises are often inclusive of a sightseeing tour of the city from the Dubai Creek or the marina while the night-time cruise features music and a buffet amidst blinding lights. While the basic offerings in all Dhow Cruises are similar, guests are advised to compare packages and prices of different operators prior to confirming the cruise.

Image via Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort

 Your Options

Your options for the Dhow Cruise lie in the night-time and daytime, at the Dubai Creek or marina. Contemporary travellers are likely to prefer the option of a Dhow Cruise at the marina where sights are glamorous and modern, while the old souls may savour memories cruising down the Dubai Creek beside the historic centre of the city.

 The Ideal Time

Dubai is a city blessed with sunshine all year round, making a tour of the city rather tolerable at any time. However, November through April is the ideal time for a vacation, if one wishes to avoid excessive amounts of heat. While cruise prices tend to rise during this season, the packages remain the same. Most operators offer both daytime and night-time cruises with a range of features to choose from.

Your Kayaking Adventure in Abu Dhabi – A Journey Through the Still Waters

Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE is not only a commercial city known for its skyscrapers and oil exports but is also an active tourism destination offering an excitement-filled vacation to travellers all around the world. Kayaking has become a recent favourite among the many activities offered to visitors in Abu Dhabi and here are some of the top kayaking spots in the city to explore.

Photo by Hillebrand Steve, USFWS on Pixnio

 Kayaking in the Mangroves

A vacation at Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island Al Sahel Villa Resort is a guaranteed pass to plunge into a range of water sports. Therefore, kayaking in the mangroves has become one of the most sought-after activities in Abu Dhabi for leisure and entertainment. Kayaking through the mangroves is a doorway to catch glimpses of migratory birds, rare animals, mammals and vibrant marine life.

 Private Adventures

Private kayaking adventures can often be organised by the resort, hotel or tour company by contacting a help desk. A tailored tour to glide your way into kayaking is perhaps the best method to explore the waters at your own pace. All private kayaking adventures will be guided by a professional who will allow tourists to move at a comfortable pace and offer advice on adventure goals and interests based on one’s experience level.

 Sir Bani Yas Island Kayaking

Sign up for some nature-based sightseeing in Sir Bani Yas Island as you kayak your way to aquatic pleasure. The waterways amid the thriving mangroves of Sir Bani Yas Island reconnect with the sea, offering breathtaking sights of rare creatures, and migratory birds, as well as a sneak, peek into the marine life along the way.

 Louvre Abu Dhabi

The routes, packages and tours that offer kayaking experiences to tourists are many. Louvre Abu Dhabi is not only a museum that represents the contemporary Arab world but also a hub of excitement for its visitors. The museum offers guests an opportunity to go kayaking around the museum in the stillness of the Arabian Sea. This unusual tour offers a new perspective of the museum as one circle around this marvellous structure.

Experiencing Yi Peng & Loy Krathong in Thailand

Two lantern festivals that are popular in Thailand, Loy Krathong and Yi Peng are truly spellbinding to witness and here’s more on what you need to know.

Loy Krathong

Lantern festival
Image via Wikimedia Commons (Takeaway, LK loy krathong yi peng san sai, CC BY-SA 3.0)

This is the name given to a water lantern festival in Thailand that falls on the full moon of the local lunar calendar’s 12th month, normally November. ‘Loy’ translates to ‘float’, while ‘krathong’ is in reference to a floating object or container. Thus, it’s no surprise that the key element of this event is the krathong which is traditionally made from the bark of a banana tree; on this small krathong, an incense stick or candle is placed, before being sent down a waterway, generally at night.

Making a Wish

Each person will launch one of these floating lanterns which can also contain food, flowers or garlands and at the same time make a wish in the hope it will be granted; some also consider it symbolic of sending their problems ‘floating’ away. As you would expect, the waterways throughout the country become places to see and join in the traditions of Loy Krathong. This not only includes cities like Bangkok, but destinations such as Koh Samui; 5-star hotels on the island including SAii Koh Samui Choengmon are within easy reach of sites such as Chaweng Lake, one of the places to experience this festival.

Yi Peng

An equally captivating and visually stunning festival, Yi Peng is more popular in Northern Thailand since it’s a traditional Lanna (ancient northern kingdom) festival. It takes place on the full moon of the second month according to the Lanna lunar calendar; ‘yi’ translates to ‘two’ and ‘peng’ means ‘full moon day’. Interestingly, it coincides with the date of Loy Krathong so both festivals are celebrated on the same day; however, the key difference is that for Yi Peng, the lanterns float not on the water but up in the air!

A Magical Sight

On this day, people will gather in one place to release what are called ‘khom loi’ which are special lanterns with a flame that makes them float into the night sky against the backdrop of a full moon. By releasing the lanterns, one symbolically releases the misfortunes of the year, while some may write a wish on them believing it will come true. Chiang Mai is one of the best places to witness the stunning spectacle of Yi Peng with the Three Kings Monument being a prime spot. It’s celebrated at other locations and visitors can join too as well as enjoy parades and other cultural events.

  

 

 

 

Snorkeling in The Maldives

The Maldives is home to numerous water sports – and snorkelling and surfing are two of the most popular water sports around the year.

snorkeling maldives
snorkeling maldives | Image by Ric Taylor via flickr

Best time to snorkel

Snorkelling is a water sport that will allow you to explore the shallow waters in the sea, and this will enable you to swim with schools of colourful fish, turtles, and sometimes even stingrays. Whilst this is an activity you can do around the year, the best time to go snorkelling in the Maldives is from November to February.

Where to go snorkelling

Male is the most popular place to go snorkelling for locals, but you can also do this at other islands in different atolls. Addu atoll and Lhaviyani atoll are two of the best locations to snorkel when you are in the Maldives.

How to learn

World-class luxurious resorts like the OZEN RESERVE BOLIFUSHI, home to a host of Maldives Luxury Villas, have private beaches. If you are willing to learn, there are many schools that teach different water sports. There are shops where you can rent the necessary gear, so you do not have to worry about purchasing goggles and other items.

What to expect

Depending on where you are snorkelling, you can spot sting rays, manta rays, parrotfish, clownfish, blacktip reef sharks, Moorish idols, and a range of other fish.

 

Set Off on a Desert Hike – A Beginner’s Tips for Survival

Explore the desert landscape for a thrilling ride in the golden dunes on a sunny day. While these terrains will offer an action-packed adventure to whoever chooses to venture out into the desert, it is also important that one is equipped and dessert-ready for a hike.

 Stay Hydrated

It is no secret that your desert adventures will not involve any natural source of water. Therefore, staying hydrated is among the most important factors to adhere to, when setting off on a desert safari from your vacation lodging at Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara. The harsh environment in the desert gives minimal shade and is likely to be a scorching experience, therefore, carrying plenty of replenishing juices, water and snacks to munch on will help keep you hydrated and energised to explore miles and miles into the desert.

Image via Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara

 Choose Off Times

Whether you are setting off on a desert safari or a hike, the rule of thumb is to avoid peak hours. Summer heat in the deserts usually climbs up to three digits and will not treat one kindly. Therefore, expert hikers choose their timings wisely. The ideal times for a hike in the desert would be early morning or late afternoon when there is shade and less heat.

 Protection is Key

A desert’s biggest threat to a hiker is the sun. Therefore, the right items of clothing and sun protection should be chosen to survive the heat. Be sure to include sunscreen, sunglasses, hats and loose-fitting synthetic clothes to keep you protected from the scorching sun. It is advisable that sunscreen be applied every 1-2 hours in order to avoid sunburns and poisoning.

 Be on the Lookout

A desert is not simply an empty land of grains but also a home for some of the most poisonous creatures known to man. Therefore, desert hikers are often warned to be on the lookout for rattlesnakes, scorpions, poisonous lizards and tarantulas who can camouflage themselves in the desert dunes. Therefore, do a thorough check of your sleeping bag before use and avoid sticking your hand in any wet or cold places.

Solo Traveling in Ao Nang, Krabi – Enjoy the Solitude!

Located in Southern Thailand in Krabi Province, Ao Nang is a small town filled with adventures for a solo traveller. The vibe is amazing, and the people are always welcoming. Here are some tips to make your journey of solitude easier.

 Where to Stay

Solo travellers are more than welcome on the island, and there are plenty of Ao Nang beach hotels that will happily accommodate you. Try resorts like Avani Ao Nang Cliff Krabi Resort where you can find good deals for solo travelling, while you indulge in freedom and relaxation.

 What to Eat

You can try all the Thai food and a few local fusion dishes during your stay in Ao Nang. Most restaurants will look simple and humble; however, the taste of the food will blow your mind! The authentic dishes made with fresh ingredients and island spices will keep you craving for more.

 What to Visit

You can try visiting a few Buddhist temples for a relaxing meditation experience to cleanse your mind. Kayaking is another way to enjoy the beauty of nature on a serene ride. A walk down the beach or taking a fishing boat with the locals on a sailing adventure.

Photo by nicocattini form PxHere

 What to Keep in Mind

You will be safe and treated with the best hospitality though be mindful to be respectful of the locals, the Thai Royal Family and Buddhism as well as other religions. Rudeness will be strongly frowned upon or even get you in trouble legally in some cases, so be on your best behaviour!

Holidaying in Pattaya – Thailand’s Most Coveted City!

Pattaya is an all-inclusive city nestled on Thailand’s eastern gulf. This vibrant destination is home to a host of sandy beaches, stylish hotels and resorts, night markets, clubs, theme parks and religious sites giving you a slice of fun, luxury, comfort and relaxation. Read on to find out about some of the most coveted attractions of this heavenly city.

 Explore the beautiful Koh Lan

Koh Lan is a beautiful island nestled 7km away from Pattaya. There are ample boats to reach this stunning island from Pattaya at different intervals of the day. Even though the island is quite small, there are at least 6 different beaches, each one boasting its own charm and aura.

Terry.lives.in.tokyo, OCT2010VN 246, CC BY-SA 3.0

 Take a trip to Khao Chee Chan Buddha Mountain

Khao Chee Chan also known as Buddha Mountain is a popular tourist site located in Chon Buri Province. Famous for its enormous sculptural image of Lord Buddha, this landmark site is visited by tourists across the border each day. The place is open from 8 am to 6 pm every day and make sure that you are dressed appropriately before paying a visit.

 Immerse in the nightlife at Walking Street

There is no better place to relish the shimmering city lights and go wild to the tunes of music than at Pattaya Walking street. This 500m long street welcomes no vehicles after 6 pm making it the perfect place for a memorable time. Teeming with nightclubs, beer clubs, restaurants and go-go bars, the night lives on till morning in these lively streets. If you are spending your staycation at one of the most stylish Pattaya resorts the likes of Avani Pattaya Resort, you can simply walk into these buzzing streets whilst enjoying the glimmering neon lights and singing to the tunes of good music.

Enjoy a blissful day in the water parks

No trip to Pattaya is complete without a little bit of adventure and fun at the city’s many water parks. These waterparks are brimming with everything from water slides, swimming pools and pool bars, to obstacle courses and children’s playgrounds. These water parks including Ramayana Waterpark, Splashdown water park and Pattaya waterpark are the places to be if you want to share some fun frolics with your friends or family.

Family Activities on a Beach Trip in Mui Ne, Vietnam – Fun-Filled Experiences for All

A sublime coastal destination, Mui Ne in Vietnam has much to offer families and here are some of the many activities you can enjoy with your loved ones.

Play Games at the Beach

One of the area’s key allures is its scenic shoreline which stretches for around 15 km with plenty of sun-kissed sands to choose from. You can stay at family-friendly properties right by the beach with Anantara Mui Ne Resort which features pool villas and a kids’ club being an ideal choice. Families can enjoy building sandcastles, playing games and sports and spending quality time with each other.

Explore the Sand Dunes

The two areas with sand dunes at this destination are very popular too and amongst the best things to do in Mui Ne with your family is to visit each of them. At the White Sand Dunes, you can enjoy a stunning pristine desert landscape where you can try activities like quad biking or going on hot air balloon rides. Equally impressive are the Red Sand Dunes where you can rent sleds that can be used for a fun ride down the dunes.

ruben i, Mui Ne sand dunes 1, CC BY 2.0

Visit the Fairy Stream

Another key attraction to visit with your family is the enchanting Fairy Stream which can be combined with your trip to the Red Sand Dunes. This lovely little stream is set amidst fascinating rock formations that add to the charming setting. The stream is only around ankle-deep, and you can easily wade along it, while if you climb up to the top of the rocks, you can take in some stunning views too.

Take a Trip to the Ke Ga Lighthouse

For family excursions in Mui Ne, you can go on a trip to the Ke Ga Lighthouse which happens to be Southeast Asia’s oldest lighthouse! This site is located on Ke Ga Island and can be reached by boat which lends to the whole adventure. While you won’t be able to go inside the 65-metre-high lighthouse, you can explore the surroundings featuring ancient Su trees, large rocks and an idyllic beach.

A Hike to Castle Hill

Looking for a bit of adventure in Queensland? Go on a little hiking tour to Castle hills, standing tall in the epicenter of Townsville. With panoramic vistas of the city’s landscape and nearby attractions, you will feel that getting to the top of this giant monolith is all worth the effort. Want to know more about the popular hiking trails, where to stay, what to eat, and what scenic views await once you reach the summit? Keep reading to find out!

Getting to the top

Hiking to the summit of the castle hills | Image by Samuel Mann via flickr

Whilst you can drive up to the top of these magnificent hills, I bet it will not be as fun making your way through an adventurous mountain trail. Out of the two main hiking trails that guide you to the summit, the Goat track remains a favorite among hikers. Offering a pleasantly challenging route, it will take a little over an hour for you to complete your journey across this popular mountain trail. Since the mountain track is enjoyed by hikers around the world, prepare to meet some like-minded explorers during your expedition as well.

Where to stay

Making your pick from the best Townsville Australia hotels depends much on your preference and budget. From budget hostels for backpackers to plush little abodes for family stays like Oaks Townsville Gateway Suites, within easy reach of the city and nearby attractions, finding accommodation in Townsville is indeed a piece of cake. Whilst planning your stay in this thriving metropolis, also remember to unlock the special offers and discounts curated by opulent hotels and resorts to make your stay more memorable!

Views from the summit

Once you reach the top of the hill, take a small stroll to reward yourself with some sweeping views of the city, the Great Barrier Reef, Magnetic Island and many more! Paired with the changing hues of the glistening sun, there is no better way to see the best of what this beachfront city has to offer than from the top of Castle Hill.

Things to be mindful of

With the blazing sunrays and grasslands, the castle hill trail is an ideal terrain for slithery snakes to wind their way across the land. During your journey to the top, always keep an eye out for these slimy creatures to avoid any risk to your life. While the hill is also a great place to accompany your dog on a little adventure, watch out for those stray dogs wandering around the trail that you do not want to meet.

Kid-friendly Enthralling Experiences to Try in Queenstown!

Whether you are looking for adventure zip rides, speed jet boat rides, serene cruise rides, downhill bike rides, joy luge rides, thrilling skiing experiences, or fun indoor activities, Queenstown is the one-stop destination to enjoy it all! Above all, all these thrilling experiences are curated for kids and adults alike, so you and your little daredevils can feel the thrill without having to worry about safety.

Zipline adventure

Imagine swishing through a 130 m line at a speed of 60k’s an hour? Kawaru zip ride is an ideal place for you and your daredevil kids to go wild with excitement. There are three zip lines altogether and you and your kids can opt to go single or tandem. However, if you are kids are only 8 or 9 years of age, they must only ride the tandem and must be accompanied by you. So, why wait? Brace yourself to soar up from the Kawarau Bungy centre and swiftly fly past the surrounding greenery! Do not forget to bask in the scenic views as you scream along the ride!

Fun in the water

Jet rides in Queenstown |Image by Kuno Schweizer | Image via unsplash

With Queenstown hosting the world’s first commercial jet boat tour, what better way to explore this beautiful hinterland than hopping on board a jetboat with you and your kids? Be it white water rides, wilderness jet experiences, wine tasting tours, or clay bird shooting tours, you and your kids are spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting an adventure jet ride. What’s more? If you and your kids are not fans of speed boat rides, there is always the famous TSS Earnslaw, to enjoy a serene cruise ride along Lake Wakapitu.

Sky Rides with views

A family expedition to Queenstown is not complete without a visit to the Skyline, Queenstown! Not only is this adventure centre, a magnet for killer views of Coronet Peak and shrouded mountain ranges, but there is also ample thrill rides waiting to be tried! Here you and your kids can enjoy Skyline luge rides that traverse across banked corners and tunnels along an 800m line, downhill mountain bike rides that allow for scenic views plus fresh breeze, and many more! The thrilling sporting centre is also within easy reach of Oaks, Queenstown club suites, better known as the best ski resort in Queenstown. So if you choose to stay in this magnificent resort, you can conveniently round off your experience with a drive to the Coronet Peak ski field.

Thrilling indoor activities

Did the weather put a damper on your plans? There is nothing to mope about! Queenstown is packed with a myriad of thrilling indoor activities to keep you and your kids busy throughout the day! Choose from a range of fun indoor activities like wall climbing, bouldering, paintballing, indoor sky diving, and visits to haunted houses, and your kids will be giggling with joy!