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Facing my Fears: Afraid to Travel

Have you ever been travelling and when it has come time to move on you can’t or don’t want to? I am facing my fears on that at the moment.

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We are strong believers that slow travel is the best way to see the world. We don’t like rushing through every city and country gathering stamps in our passport.

That’s why we choose to work abroad while on our adventures. It allows us to travel for longer. It is why we lived in Jasper National Park for a year before choosing our European base in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh Castle Braveheart Scotland

Our original idea was to stay a few months in different places to experience a part of the globe before skipping off to the next destination.

That was two years ago.

Before I knew it our temporary destination has become our home away from home.  The driver on my bus to work knows my name. I recognize people in my local supermarket.

And now that we are facing the possibility of leaving I find myself scared. I am too attached to leave, but don’t really want to stay.

I am afraid to travel.

How did this happen to us? When did we forget our travel purpose of being temporary residents in a city?

In hindsight I made a few mistakes.

I found a really good group of friends. I am in a job I really enjoy and could easily see myself here in five years time. I have even scoped out a local coffee shop with a gorgeous chocolate cake on the menu.

Cake Edinburgh, Love Crumbs
Cake Edinburgh, Love Crumbs
Cake Edinburgh, Love Crumbs
Cake Edinburgh, Love Crumbs

In essence I have made myself a life here. And now I feel like I am going to be leaving home for the second time.

But as I sit here writing this post, I can see our motivation in the background. A giant map of the world. And I am reminded that Edinburgh is a very small part of that world. There are so many places I still want to see.

World Map

And moving isn’t all that bad.

Moving to a new place is exciting. Exploring new neighborhoods, eating at new restaurants and finding secret views for the first time.

It can be so easy to lose sight of your travel goals. That is why travelling as a couple is so great. We can remind each other of our purpose.

Cole is great at cheering me up when I start to get sad about leaving. But all it takes is a small reference to a city on my bucket list dream list and I am dreaming of the future in a new destination…

Three Valleys Sunset

This might become our next temporary home.

So as I finish this article I am happier than when I started writing. I cannot call myself a traveller if I am not facing my fears and I am reminded that the world really is our oyster. We have so many great adventures ahead of us to experience.

While it will be hard, it will be worth it.

All we have to do is take the leap.

This is a post from a series called Facing my Fears. It helps us to step outside our comfort zone, in comfort. Check out the rest of the series here.

Tell us about how you Face your Fears when moving to a new destination in the comments.

Adela is one half of the New Zealand Adventure Couple who have been travelling since 2009. She loves the outdoors and has a real passion for Snowboarding, Mountain Biking and Surfing (apart from being scared of sharks). She loves food and writes all our food posts. Consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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69 Comments

69 Comments

  1. Annette | Bucket List Journey

    October 15, 2012 at 3:59 PM

    It would be hard to leave a place once you feel happily comfortable, especially hard to leave that cake! But, you are right, there is a whole big world out there to see 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      October 15, 2012 at 4:49 PM

      Thanks Annette! We are taking the steps to make sure we get out there and see it all 😉 But you are right, that cake is delicious haha.

  2. Karen @ Trans-Americas Journey

    October 15, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    As fellow slow travelers we completely understand that comfortable feeling of having a temporary home on the road–and the reluctance to leave it! We’ve begun house sitting (which we love–post on that going up this week) and we’re currently back in Nicaragua at a friend’s house enjoying the comforts of home (doing laundry! cooking food!), at least for now. It will be hard to move on again, but exciting as well–especially with batteries fully charged by a period of non-travel. Can’t wait to hear where you guys are off to next!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 15, 2012 at 8:48 PM

      We keep looking at house sitting for our next option. Applied for a couple of them but then when it has come around to finalising the details we haven’t been able to make it. Next time for sure.

  3. Victoria

    October 15, 2012 at 5:53 PM

    I can relate to this. It’s hard when you find somewhere you love, but I guess you can always go back if you want to. I think it’s also important to not feel too much pressure to see it all. Staying for longer than you thought in somewhere you love isn’t always a bad thing. It’s a tricky balance sometimes. On another note, your next temporary home looks colder than Edinburgh! Do you brave the jandals in such cold climates?!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 15, 2012 at 8:49 PM

      Haha we can’t go back because of the visa situation actually!

      We love the snow 😉 But might have to leave the jandals in storage while we are there.

  4. Laurence

    October 15, 2012 at 8:51 PM

    It sounds like you have a great life up in Edinburgh – but you’re right – the world is such an amazing place and there is so much out there to see! Change is always going to be a scary thing, however many times we do it – but I think you’e on the right path 😀

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:39 AM

      Maybe we need to find someone that has a small campsite or something to relax on for a few weeks…

  5. Vera

    October 15, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    Adela -I left Rotorua although they had THE BEST chocolate brownies EVER on the weekly night market, and so can you;)!! …I’ve had a few places that I didn’t feel like leaving, because I didn’t have the feeling I was ‘over with it’ yet (and then I just got stuck there until I got more excited about leaving than I was happy with staying). I think that it is actually pretty awesome that you have had such good experiences with making friends, loving work, being greeted by the bus driver – and finding THAT chocolate cake! Locating good chocolate cake is never a mistake, it’s a talent, and you shall take it with you, to your next destination, so don’t be afraid;)!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:12 PM

      Thanks Vera, you are right I do look back on my time here with really fond memories which is great. And you are so right about not leaving a place and getting stuck there! And I have high hopes for finding a new coffee joint 🙂

  6. Lesley Peterson

    October 15, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    Does traveling mean never going back or retracing one’s steps? Is a place the same place once moved forward in time? I really enjoy revisiting places, again and again, for new art shows and architecture, to see what has changed and what hasn’t, just to enjoy what pleased me before: the food, the weather, a favorite painting. I get around pangs of travel regret by consciously saying ‘next time’. And surprisingly there nearly always is a ‘next time’ even if I don’t plan for it. Happens more often than not, even if it takes years. Love Scotland, it’s definitely on my short list for a revisit.

  7. Andy

    October 16, 2012 at 12:03 AM

    The old notion of the hardest step is the first one was never more true. It is extremely difficult to move sometimes especially if we have been stationary for a while. The longer you get to moving, the easier it becomes. Thanks for the cool post! Keep traveling and living the dream!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:14 PM

      Thanks Andy, I am hoping after I make the choice to move the actual move will be easy! As you said I have to keep living the dream!

  8. Jenna

    October 16, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    It’s tough to leave a good thing, no doubt! Though sometimes it helps to remind yourself that things rarely stay the same. The friends you have could leave, the job could change its home base, and the coffee shop could turn into a nail salon 🙂 I don’t mean to say you should expect the worst, but rather appreciate the moment without attachment, as Buddhists say. You have the rest of your life to move back if you choose!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:16 PM

      I so know what you mean Jenna, in fact a few of my friends are moving on not long after we are planning to leave – so that is a comfort! Thanks for the comment!

  9. Raymond @ Man On The Lam

    October 16, 2012 at 4:54 PM

    Just remember that great big wide world that’s out there waiting for you and I think you’re gonna do just fine. 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:21 PM

      Thanks Raymond – I try to keep reminding myself of that! Or at least Cole is there to remind me 🙂

  10. Trudy

    October 16, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    Good luck with your next move – where are you off to next? We are leaving Holland in December after over a year and I’ve got mixed feelings. I’m totally ready to go but it takes this amount of time to really know a place and we have such good friends here. It’s hard also if you have a job you love cause that’s always something that’s hard to find. I’m glad you love Edinburgh though, I think it might be on my future home list!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 16, 2012 at 9:26 PM

      You should definitely put Edinburgh on your “to live in” list Trudy, its a great city 🙂 We have a few options in mind for our next destination; France, Berlin or maybe even Spain. Holland will be great though – good luck with the move I am sure you will do great 🙂

  11. Juliann

    October 17, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    I love moving to new places. Until I met my husband, I moved every year or so. But he likes being near family, and I’ve come to value that more and more, too. Now we just take move vacations to quench my wanderlust. But if he ever says, “Let’s move,” I’ll have our bags packed and ready to go within minutes.

    • Cole Burmester

      October 17, 2012 at 7:19 PM

      We do miss our families a lot! But luckily with Skype and cheaper travel we do get to see them lots to keep our homesickness away 🙂

  12. Pete

    October 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    I think we all have the same feelings at times, but for they immediately disappear once I step foot on that plane, train or whatever and know that I’m going somewhere else. It’s the challenge that I strive for. Staying put for too long and having a routine is what scares me. Best of luck and hopefully our paths will meet up sooner or later 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:46 AM

      The act of travelling is definitely a great motivator to keep on moving. We have just become too relaxed with our slow travel way of life. Need a good kick up the a$$ to get going again!

  13. Cathy Sweeney

    October 19, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    I always get a little sad whenever I leave a place — whether I’ve been there a short time or a long time. But I get excited as soon as I think about the adventure ahead! However, that chocolate cake does look like it might be just enough reason to stay in Edinburgh. Happy travels!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:46 AM

      I think on our last day in Edinburgh we will be visiting the cake shop 😉 We have too many other places to visit to get tied down for too long, that’s for sure!

  14. Laurel

    October 19, 2012 at 8:22 PM

    I like having a base too and exploring from there. Looking forward to seeing where you next adventure takes you.

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:47 AM

      It is a bit scary that we still haven’t organised where our next adventure will be. Hopefully in the next 2 weeks we will have it confirmed!

  15. Mikeachim

    October 20, 2012 at 1:31 PM

    I love travel…except when I’m about to do it. There’s something in me that digs its heels in and has a Little Madam (Little Mister?) hissy-fit. Confuses me no end, because once I’m off, I almost always love it, partly because I have no choice by that point, but partly because of the excitement you mention…

    I’ve concluded it’s not travel that I’m afraid of, it’s uncertainty, and the more predictability I have in my life, the more difficult I find it to handle leaps into the dark. When I’m ready to move, my mind is coming up with all sorts of excuses as to why I need more time. I haven’t got x done. I haven’t taken advantage of the local delights of y. I haven’t properly said goodbye to z. But what I’m really fighting, I think, is my mind having grown accustomed to predictable routine. It’s not the place – it’s the certainty of being here tomorrow, and the day after, etc.

    Wherever we stop, we are surrounded by routines. People making grooves in the world by doing similar things day in, day out. This is how societies survive and the world would fall over if people didn’t set down habitual roots like this (travelers being freakish in this respect. If everyone decided to hit the road, governments would collapse overnight. Discuss). And it’s not about “good” or “bad”, it’s how almost all of the world works. And partly because of that, and partly because of thousands of years of cultural conditioning, we settle into routines so very easy, and we grow comfortable with predictability.

    (Disclaimer: I may be talking out my ass, you’ve met me, you know what I’m like – but also, I’m reading a very good book called “Uncertainty”, by Jonathan Fields. Much food for thought on this topic).

    Here’s a really interesting read on travel and stability – where the author is making a case for constant movement being as difficult to get out of as constantly staying in one place: http://www.ribbonfarm.com/2011/07/31/on-being-an-illegible-person/

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:51 AM

      Brilliant points Mike. You should probably start writing or something as I think you have a great way with words…

      Totally nailed it though and it is amazing the comfort we all get out of having a set routine. Whether it is being able to visit your local coffee shop every morning or knowing that the Formula 1 is on at 2pm on a Sunday, it just works. I guess that is why we love travelling so much. We love to step outside our comfort zones, but I think humans can only handle so much unpredictability for so long. It is why everyone suffers from some sort of “travel burn out” after a while.

  16. James Shannon

    October 20, 2012 at 10:49 PM

    Sweet ski photo near the end of the post … where’s it located?

    No worries guys, I’m sure you’ll find aspects of your new destination that will hook you just as you found those things about Edinburgh that appealed to you…

    Facebook is a wonderful thing … you and your new friends will make plans to link up again, somewhere in the world, before you even realize it! 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:56 AM

      The photo is from the 3 Valleys ski resort in France. Epic area and about 20 times larger than Marmot! No joke.

      Cheers for the reassurances too 😉

  17. D.J. - The World of Deej

    October 21, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    This is definitely one of my biggest concerns with venturing out long term. I’m afraid that every place I’d land would start to become home. But you’re right…they’re just small pieces of a big world that needs exploring…

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 11:57 AM

      Nowhere will be exactly like home, but when you get into a routine it is really hard to break it! I guess that is why so many people don’t find the time to travel ever in their lives!

  18. Stephen Schreck

    October 22, 2012 at 4:02 AM

    I have moments like that, usually about a month before I am due to leave until my first day traveling. Once I land in a place I have never been all those feeling are replaced by the amazing feeling you can only get while traveling. That being said I challenge anyone not to spend a long time in Edinburgh and not want to leave.

    • Cole Burmester

      October 28, 2012 at 12:00 PM

      Definitely agree Stephen! Once we step onto the plane on our way to a new destination all our fears evaporate and the sense of adventure returns. Pity we all like routines so much.

  19. Peter Lee

    October 22, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    I think it is really difficult to move from your comfort zone to a another place. But it all depends on you, if you like changes than it would be the best thing you can do yourself. Moving to a new place is great way to meet new people, experience their culture and explore new places.

  20. flip

    October 23, 2012 at 4:56 AM

    moving to a new destination is exciting for me as I’m motivated in seeing new things and trying new stuff… but after being on the road for quite some time now (18 months).. i’m thinking of staying put in just one place for a few months to rest and just to chill and do nothing 🙂 thanks for sharing your insight on this topic…

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:21 AM

      We all need a little bit of routine in our lives every now and then. It is amazing how quickly the itch to travel comes on though after just a few days or weeks in one spot!

  21. Pola (@jettingaround)

    October 23, 2012 at 10:19 AM

    I can understand getting comfortable in a place and attached to friends, favorite hangouts, the daily routine. I hope that your fears soon give way to the excitement of exploration you describe. Best of luck and enjoy!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:22 AM

      We are getting excited about moving on now that we have a plan… all will be revealed soon! 🙂

  22. Angela

    October 23, 2012 at 11:47 AM

    I understand your fear of traveling and leaving the places you love, I have it too sometimes, but the fear of not traveling is bigger 😉 Probably the most painful time for me was when I left China, I’m almost afraid to go back because I don’t want to feel the pain of leaving all over again!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:23 AM

      Totally agree that the fear of NOT travelling scares us more. Not sure what we would do with ourselves if someone ever told us we could never travel again!

  23. Lijiang

    October 25, 2012 at 8:23 AM

    I also love to travel from one place to another places, that is so exciting. Always imagine about next destination. I like relaxing pace, not to rush.

  24. The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen)

    October 25, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    I understand your mixed emotions. Traveling the world is great … but it’s also good to have a home, to see friends regularly, and to have a job you enjoy (though this can be on the road, too!). We recently moved from the U.S. to China for at least a year. There were mixed emotions as we had to give up a lot and bid farewell to a lot in order to come here, but we’re very glad we did. And I’m sure in a year or two when it’s time to move back home, we’ll face similar emotions about moving back! Good luck with your decision, guys!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:38 AM

      Thanks Ellen for your support! It is always hard to say goodbye, but so exciting to go to new places. But as long as we keep reminding ourselves of that, then we will be fine 🙂

  25. Ali

    October 25, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    No matter how exciting change can be, it’s usually scary too. I like the comforts of home too, but I know I *need* that change. You keep in touch with friends and make new ones, and suddenly you have friends all over the world even if you can’t see them often. Good luck with the next step!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:42 AM

      Cheers Ali. It is definitely the excitement of meeting new people, eating new foods, and trying new adventures that keeps us going after 3 years on the road!

  26. Mary @ Green Global Travel

    October 26, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    I can relate to your fears. As an adult, I’ve never lived outside of the Atlanta area. For now, Bret and I both function best when we have a stable home base with friends, family, and our dog Huckleberry. Unfortunately, having a permanent home base has it’s drawbacks as well- more expensive to live, more expensive flights, less time to explore a new place. Good for you for facing your fears and moving on to the next phase in your travel life. Best of luck!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 9:45 AM

      I never knew you had a dog called Huckleberry! Cute 🙂 We do like having a base, and that is part of the reason we have enjoyed living in Edinburgh so much. We can pack up for the weekend and in 2 hours be in another country with different cultures, food and adventures. Makes life very simple. But we do need another challenge now I think 😉

  27. Michael @ Changes In Longitude

    October 29, 2012 at 2:01 AM

    We’ve had similar feelings on our RTW, but the excitement and anticipation of seeing a new place outweighs the thought of staying put, at least so far.I guess in the end you just have to do what feels right to you. I think travel is turning us into unstoppable nomads.

    Cheers,

    Michael

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 10:36 AM

      Totally agree with you there Michael! You will reach a point one day where you will feel burnt out. That is when you realise you need to slow down. It happens to everyone, no matter how many years you travel for 😉

  28. CreditDonkey

    October 29, 2012 at 9:59 AM

    Hi Cole and Adela,

    Every travel blog I read fuels my desire for travel. Fear is in there too, and I have yet to take my first step but once I do, I also plan to take it slow like you do and savor the experience.

    Best of luck in your new adventure!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 10:37 AM

      Thanks Theresa! Once you take that first step, all you will want to do is start running and never stopping 🙂

  29. Abby

    October 31, 2012 at 5:47 AM

    It is never a mistake to make great friends!! I love moving and thrive on that excitement. But I have now stayed put for two years myself. It is amazing. It was a fear I needed to get over, and I can’t believe how much I’ve learned about myself during this time period. It’s strange where life can take us!

    • Cole Burmester

      October 31, 2012 at 10:48 AM

      But you are still getting the crazy adventures in Vegas so that is alright 😉

  30. Steve

    November 3, 2012 at 5:33 AM

    It’s really hard to leave the place which you have fallen in love with. You’ll miss the place, people, cuisine and culture. This makes us afraid to travel and try something new. Just be brave enough and think that something better is coming!

    • Cole Burmester

      November 3, 2012 at 4:48 PM

      Everywhere that we go we seem to fall in love with. We just hope our next move will be just as good 😉

  31. Kieu ~ GQ trippin

    November 3, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    Yum.. CHOCOLATE CAKE! You know.. I think I suffer from the opposite – fear of staying put. The last year, all we’ve known is travel and being on the constant move. I always admire those who can stay in one place and truly absorb it all in but am afraid that I’ll want leave the moment things get comfy. Let’s trade places and conquer our little fear together, shall we? 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      November 3, 2012 at 7:36 PM

      Sounds like a grand idea Kieu 😉 Would be great to finally meet you guys somewhere!

  32. Maddy @ I'm Not Home

    November 4, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    I am in Asia atm and those pictures of chocolate cake are just too much!

    I know what you mean – it’s hard to leave somewhere you’re so attached to, especially as you know you’ll probably never live there again. At least if you stay in Europe you know you can pop over for a visit! I’m thinking of making a base for myself next year so it’s good for me to hear the perspective of someone who has done it. Good luck with the move!

    • Cole Burmester

      November 4, 2012 at 6:03 PM

      Sounds like we might be swapping places as we want to hit up Asia at the end of next year 😉 Need to swap some ideas etc

  33. Reena @ Wanderplex

    November 12, 2012 at 11:35 PM

    I think it’s really natural to crave familiarity and a sense of routine which is probably why you’re so afraid of moving on. But I think you can get that “familiarity” on the road too – you just have to travel more slowly. I find after I’m in a place for a couple of days, I start to feel more “at home”. You’ll be fine!

  34. Victor Tribunsky

    November 13, 2012 at 1:16 PM

    There are some sities in Europe where I know I could live, but I know there are some places that will be more interesting. So – constant search! 🙂

  35. Alexandra

    December 11, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    I’m nearing 20 months on the road with the longest in one spot my boyfriends home of Germany. It’s funny I never really feel at home here I actually feel more homesick when I have a base that isn’t my home. Maybe I’m crazy but I’m happier when I am on the move! Less than a month to go before another crazy 6 months of RTW travel and at least 13 new countries to visit!

    • Cole Burmester

      December 12, 2012 at 1:37 AM

      Totally agree with you Alexandra! When we are travelling I often find we are too busy to think about home because we are having so many adventures! But as soon as we slow down and stop for a bit, that is when we get home sick.

  36. Teresa

    January 18, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    I completely understand how you feel. I have been back home for a couple of years and am planning to head off again in the next few months. I did it before so I know I can do it again – rent out my house and go – but… I didn’t expect to be dragging my heels (which is what I am doing). It is important to remind yourself of your goals and the reason why you are living this type of life.

    • Cole Burmester

      January 19, 2013 at 9:33 AM

      Well said Teresa! There is a much bigger picture that we sometimes forget to look at when we start staying for too long in one place. Not that staying in one place is bad necessarily, but to achieve all our dreams and see the world we really need to move around 🙂

  37. Mingma @ green lotus trekking

    August 29, 2014 at 8:05 PM

    I like your information which is very useful for me. Thanks.

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Travel Tips

5 Spanish Beach Holiday Destinations Off The Beaten Track

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Spanish package holidays have been a firm favourite of Europeans for more than 50 years, with many going to tried-and-tested destinations such as the Costa del Sol and Costa Brava. But what if you’re looking for a Spanish beach holiday somewhere new? Well, Spain has plenty of fantastic beach resorts you’ve probably never heard of, so we’ve unveiled five of the best destinations off the beaten track for you to consider.

Zahara de Los Atunes, Cadiz

The beach resorts in the far south of the country may be less well-known than those on the Mediterranean side of Spain, but they boast many more untouched beaches, including the spectacular Zahara de los Atunes beach, which stretches for five miles from the picturesque fishing village of the same name. The beach is popular for its water sports and makes an excellent family-friendly destination for those looking for all the trappings of a beach holiday but without the crowds. There are no high-rise hotels, giving the area a more intimate, friendly feel.

The Cíes Islands, Galicia

The little-known Cíes Islands in the north-west coast of Spain is a real find. With white-sand beaches that glisten in the sunshine thanks to tiny particles of quartz and waters of the clearest blue, it’s no wonder these islands are known as the ‘Galician Seychelles’. The 1,200m long Playa de Rodas, with its natural lagoon, sugar-like sand and turquoise waters, is beautiful. It doesn’t get much more off the beaten track than the beaches of the The Cíes Islands, accessible only by ferry, and with no hotels and only campsites available, you can live like Robinson Crusoe, if only for a few days.

Es Pujols, Formentera

On the tiny Balearic island of Formentera is the resort of Es Pujols. The one resort on the island, it provides a slower pace of life for those uninterested in the sights and sounds of its boisterous neighbour Ibiza. During the day, visitors can chill out on one of two white-sand beaches, while in the evening raise the tempo at one of the resort’s trendy nightspots. Es Pujols may be small, but it has everything a holidaymaker could want, from sunbathing and water sports to great restaurants and nightlife.

Altea, Alicante

Hidden away in the province of Alicante is the small whitewashed town of Altea. It’s just a 20-minute drive from glitzy Benidorm but couldn’t be more different. Here you can experience traditional Spain in all its glory as you wander along the cobbled streets of the old town before stopping off at one of the many traditional tapas bars for a bite to eat. Visit the exquisitely decorated Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Consuelo church before finishing your day soaking up the sun at one of the many beaches dotted around the Altea area.

Punta Umbria, Huelva

For unspoiled coastline head to Punta Umbria in the Spanish province of Huelva. There you’ll find a number of spectacular beaches, including the urbanised beach of Playa de Punta Umbria, which offers plenty of peace and quiet and escape from the crowds while still providing plenty of amenities to keep you and the family fed and watered. Be sure to take time out to visit the Paraje Natural de las Marismas del Odiel, a protected area of wetland where you can take long walks and enjoy the sights of spoonbills, loons, cormorants and flamingos.

Now that you know about these off the beaten track destinations, why not try something a little bit different for your next beach holiday to Spain?

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Travel Tips

Why is the Grand Central Station Worth a Visit?

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Grand Central Station is one of New York City’s most iconic fixtures, right up there with Times Square and the Empire State Building. Only a couple of blocks away from the Westgate NYC Hotel, it’s also close to some of the Big Apple’s most popular attractions like St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Bryant Park.

Located in midtown Manhattan, the terminal is a certified National Historic Landmark that deserves a spot on any tourist’s itinerary. Find out why it’s worth seeing below:

It’s an architectural marvel.

Calling Grand Central a “train station” is the same as calling the St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican a “church”. It is the world’s largest railway station, at 44 platforms and 67 tracks, including a rail yard and sidings. The terminal covers 48 acres of prime real estate in Park Avenue and serves an average of 750,000 commuters daily.

In addition to its sheer size, Grand Central can be classified as a work of art on itself. It was designed in the distinctive Beaux-Arts style that has defined turn-of-the-century American Renaissance architecture. The façade and structure of the terminal are made primarily of granite, and the sumptuous interiors use imitation Caen stone, Botticino marble, and pink Tennessee marble.

There’s artwork all around.

The terminal incorporates numerous public artworks into its design, making it a worthy addition to any art lover’s itinerary. Grand Central’s south façade alone features several works of art, including the world’s largest example of Tiffany glass; a 13-foot-wide clock worth 20 million US dollars; the 48-foot-wide Glory of Commerce sculptural group by French sculptor Jules-Félix Coutan; and a 4-ton, 8.5-foot bronze statue of American railroad and shipping magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, the man responsible for the station’s existence.

Inside, you’ll find the Main Concourse ceiling mural, which was designed in 1912 by French artist Paul César Helleu. Themed after celestial bodies, the artwork contains over 2,500 hand-painted stars and golden bands amidst a turquoise backdrop. Another notable mural is the Graybar Passage mural that was painted by muralist Edward Trumbull in 1927. It is a depiction of American transportation.

Contemporary works of art have been added to the terminal over the years. These include a mixed-media mural called A Field of Wild Flowers made by American visual artist Roberto Juarez, a mosaic made with glass and bronze called As Above, So Below by Brooklyn-based artist Ellen Driscoll, and Sirshasana, a hanging sculpture made with aluminum, polyester resin, and crystals made by Donald Lipski, an American sculptor.

It’s a shopping and dining destination

Since its inception, Grand Central was built with the commuter’s comfort and convenience in mind. When it first opened, it contained several amenities including a ladies’ waiting room, a shoeshine room, a beauty salon, and a barbershop. Today, it houses numerous shops, restaurants, cocktail bars, and other services. The 65 retail establishments include an Apple Store, L’Occitane, M.A.C. Cosmetics, and diptyque.

On the lower dining concourse, you’ll find fast-casual New York institutions such as Shake Shack and Magnolia Bakery, as well as the 107-year-old fine dining restaurant Grand Central Oyster Bar. Grand Central Market occupies its own area, where local vendors sell high-quality gourmet products and fresh produce in a European-style market setting. There’s even a tennis club on the premises called the Vanderbilt Tennis Club which is open to the public from 6 A.M. to 1 A.M.

Grand Central Station is New York in a nutshell: vibrant, exciting and diverse. A full calendar of events means that there’s always something going on, so check it out next time you’re in the city!

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Travel Tips

Travel Sri Lanka Tips – 5 Things You Need to Know

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Known as “India’s tear”, Sri Lanka is a country that has a lot to do. From beach and mountains to surfing, diving, and chaos, all within the same island. Are you looking for adventures? Sri Lanka will not disappoint you, and here we will tell you why.

Polonnaruwa y Anuradhapura: to enjoy cycling

These cities declared World Heritage by UNESCO, are ideal for traveling on two wheels because of distances allow it, and you can stop to observe the beautiful stupas, Buddhist statues, and perfectly preserved ancient temples. Then you can go back to rest at the reserved hotel in Sri Lanka with Voyage Privé.

Lion Rock (Sigiriya): for those who dare to climb

This mountain that represents centuries of Indian history will give you the best views of the island. It is an archaeological ensemble whose history dates back to a prince who made it his fortress due to the feared invasion of his brother, who had usurped the throne and expatriated to India. The views will be worth it since you will appreciate the size of the rock and the extension of the gardens of its base.

Dambulla Caves: to be surprised in silence

Located at the top of a rock, these caves offer a tour of Hindu religious history that will blow your mind. More than 150 statues and paintings on the walls await you to appreciate them in silence and understand the rich culture of the region.

Beaches of the South: to relax and enjoy

Golden sand and dream palm trees make these beaches an impressive paradise. Medaketiya, Tangalle, and Unawatuna are some of the best beaches on the island, where you will find relaxation on the one hand and, on the other hand, the possibility of surfing and the typical “stilt fisherman” that are so famous for tourism.

Festivals: to have fun and fill with color

If your trip coincides with the date of festivals in the country, you can observe the impressive dances, dresses, and colors that display this type of event. Decorated elephants and the emotion that is lived are things that you will remember for a lifetime. You must follow the lunar calendar to determine the date of the festivals that take place days before the full moon.

Have you started packing yet? Sri Lanka offers adventure, culture, religion, amazing landscapes and many options to enjoy. Start planning your trip and live a great experience!

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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