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Delight your family with an Athens summer escape you’ll never forget

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Going to Athens may be one of the most culturally-rich experiences your family might have. Whether you’re doing some shopping in the winding streets of the Plaka, enjoying a fresh gyro sandwich at a local lunch joint, or marveling at some of the most important historical sites in all of Europe and perhaps the entire world, Athens has something for everybody.

This is precisely what makes Athens an awesome one-stop city for every family member to enjoy. The history-loving parent will find lots of ancient sites to explore and museums to learn from, the teenager craving the perfect instagram capture will find beautiful scenery and photo opportunities, and hipster foodie in your family will find all sorts of treats to delight all of those gastronomical senses.

So where’s the catch?

Well, to be frank, Athens is expensive. While Greece is touted to be one of the more budget-friendly major European countries, even just renting a hotel room can be quite pricey.

Not to mention that you’ll have to account for all sorts of other costs when it comes to planning your activities. Entrance fees, expensive dining options, and boat tours can all make the trip hard on the wallet.

In my first trip to Athens on my own, I remember that taking a short cruise and paying for entrance fees alone added up to be a small fortune, not to mention the fact that I was paying for my hotel, food costs, and transportation.

It just ended up being quite pricey even as a solo traveler. Upon deciding to go back to Greece with my family, I came up with a plan to experience all of the above activities with them, but at a wallet-friendly budget that would still allow us to do all everything but without the cost of paying for a hotel.

How is that even possible?

Well, you can hire a yacht in Athens. Quite simply, it’s an easy-out. You get your Athens cruise and your shelter at the same time for the cost of basically, just a hotel. Surprisingly, the price of renting a yacht averages out to be about the same as staying at a hotel. So, why not just combine the cost of two separate budget items, sailing and accomodation, into one?

It’s not an immediately obvious solution, but it works. Not to mention the fact that most of these yachts come with a kitchen, so you could even save on the cost of some meals by opting to prepare your lunch and then go out for dinner.

For my family, we prefer to take our morning easy so we’ll just sleep in late, fry up some eggs onboard, and then venture out to explore the city and have lunch out. We save on the cost of breakfast, have an awesome time cooking together, and then start the day.

Bond with your family, save money

Sailing together is also an awesome family bonding experience. Whether you’re a parent that wants to teach their kids about teamwork or you’re an adult child that wants to treat their hard-working parents, there is always room to bond and grow together when you’re sharing a yacht or a sailboat.

For those with older family members that might not be able to spend quite so much time being out and about, having a yacht with onboard kitchen facilities allows more flexibility to take a break in your schedule to go back onboard, relax, cook up some food, and then venture out once more after a nice break.

You also get your share of watersports experiences when you decide to rent a boat. You can go snorkeling together, or if you rent a smaller boat, you could attach a kneeboard to the back and experience an adrenaline rush like no other.

It just opens you up to more experiences and possibilities in tailoring your holiday to suit your family’s needs.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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Travel Tips

The Top Wildlife Attractions In The Exumas

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Best known for their idyllic turquoise waters and over 365 cays, the Exumas is also home to one of the world’s largest marine parks. As one of the oldest national parks in The Bahamas, this island chain is home to a spectacular array of wildlife that can be seen all year round.

If you are seeking memorable wildlife experiences, consider a detour from the typical holiday stop-offs with one of these extraordinary up close and personal animal encounters.

Here are some of the top wildlife experiences the Exumas has to offer.

Feed the pigs on Big Major Cay

Easily accessible, Big Major Cay is an uninhabited island in Exuma, home to a large colony of friendly pigs. While it is rumoured that the pigs were left by passing sailors, Pig Beach is unique in its charm, delighting visitors with scenes of undeniable beauty. These happy pigs share the island’s crystalline waters with discerning seafarers all year round and love getting to know their human counterparts. Graciously accepting snacks and attention, these remarkable animals make for fantastic company and even better photo opportunities.

The cay is perfectly sheltered from natural storms, offering attractive tranquillity throughout the year. That being said, the best time to see these lovable creatures are the winter months. Much drier and less humid, December through to April make for a much more comfortable visit.

Swim with the sharks on Compass Cay

Take a dip in the shallow waters off Compass Cay, an exclusive island in the Outer Exumas, and enjoy a thrilling swim with the resident nurse sharks. Despite their daunting silhouette under the water’s surface, these 2-metre long nurse sharks are quizzical and placid creatures that feed off small fish and crustaceans on the seafloor. Surrounded by a sandbank, the marina’s waters are especially clear, making it a fantastic immersive experience for all. With snorkelling gear, you can join them underwater and listen to the high-pitched whistles they use to communicate. Alternatively, you can stand on the submerged viewing platform and pet them as they glide past. The viewing platform coupled with see-through waters makes for an incredible photo opportunity.

Get up close with the iguanas on Allen Cay

Located just 30 minutes by boat from Nassau, horseshoe-shaped Allen Cay is the gateway to the Exumas. Allen Cay is home to beautiful anchorages and picturesque beaches. However, the real appeal is the Allen Cay rock iguanas. At nearly three feet in length, often basking on the sun-lapped beaches or cooling-off in the surf, the rock iguanas are hard to miss. As Allen Cay is uninhabited, you can only reach the island by boat. With great anchorages off the southern shore, Allen Cay is easily accessible via a tender or dinghy ride. If you choose to pay the iguanas a visit on your holiday don’t forget to take a handful of fruit for these spectacular reptiles.

Snorkel Thunderball Grotto alongside exotic fish

Named after the iconic 1965 James Bond film, Thunderball Grotto has gained a world-renowned reputation. Accessed via a hidden entrance coming off from the beach, the underwater cave system surrounds a hollow centre, making the destination a striking haven for avid divers and snorkellers. Populated by hundreds of exotic fish, the wide tunnels are illuminated by beaming spotlights reflected around the hollow centre, making a snorkel excursion a colourful and mesmerising experience. To enjoy the Thunderball Grotto in true Bond style, it is recommended to visit the caves at high tide. During these times, divers can make their way through various tunnels and for the most relaxed snorkel, there is always the option to take things easy in the open water centre.

Of course the best way to get up close and experience these magnificent creatures is with a luxury Exumas yacht charter. So, if the idea of feeding the pigs, swimming with sharks or diving down to otherworldly waters with an array of tropical marine life excites you, make sure you request that your charter broker adds these incredible animal attractions to your charter itinerary.

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Travel Tips

Amazing Places to Travel In Pakistan and From Pakistan

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Even though Pakistan is known as a developing country, it holds natural beauty, lush landscapes, and archaeological sites for the truly curious.

Indeed, Pakistan holds potential for tourism. Did you know, According to the International Travel Magazine, Pakistan has been ranked as one of the top tourist attractions in the world in 2020? Yes, over the years, Pakistan has been a famous tourism spot. With that said, there are some places in Pakistan that you must visit.

Pakistan also has quite a bit of economic activity that ranges from fashion to finance and more. The country has quite a bit to offer for tourists that choose to visit it. At the same time, individuals from Pakistan may choose to go to other countries to seek economic opportunity or to merely travel.

If you are looking to travel to Pakistan or travel in and around the country, remember to have knowledge of your airblue flight schedule and other matters. With that being said, here are a few of the places to be aware of when you are looking to travel in and around the growing nation of Pakistan.

Places to Travel In Pakistan

Here are a few places to travel within this South Asian region.

Peshawar

One of the most tremendous cities of Pakistan, Peshawar comes under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. The city is known for its historic places and cultural values. The residents of Peshawar are called Pathans and speak the language Pashto. As the largest city in the province, Peshawar has the Mughal mosque.

It is decorated with calligraphy and floral work. Additionally, the Peshawar museum has items from the Mughal era. The museum holds great significance in the eyes of visitors.

Karachi

The next city you must visit in Pakistan is Karachi. The cosmopolitan city is the largest city of Pakistan and ranks 5th globally. Karachi is well-known for being the city of light, its food, and its beaches. The beautiful diversity in architecture speaks volumes about the city itself. From high-rise buildings in Clifton to the fire hall in Saddar, Karachi is a mix of old and modern architecture. It has endless options for entertainment including theaters, shopping malls, restaurants, and museums.

Lahore

The last city we have to think about is Lahore. The second-largest city in Pakistan holds a historical value of more than 1000 years. As one of the most traditional cities in South Asia, Lahore has a population of over 20 million. You shouldn’t miss the shahi qila also referred to as the Lahore Fort. A treat for art lovers, it has palaces, halls, and mosques, and most importantly, the palace of mirrors (Sheesh Mahall).

Fantastic Places to Travel From Pakistan

There are several places you can travel to from Pakistan, but there are some places in the middle east that you shouldn’t miss out on. Let’s take a look at some of the places you can travel to from Pakistan right away! Whether you are going for tourism purposes or for economic purposes, these are some of the best places that you should certainly visit.

Dubai

The first city we have is Dubai. As the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Dubai is a traveler’s dream. It has futuristic architecture, nightlife, attractive destinations, and historic sights. Whether it is a family vacation or a honeymoon, Dubai is a perfect spot to relish the days of your life. Places like the Mall of Emirates, Jumeirah Beach, Burj Khalifa, and Ain Dubai are a delight to visit.

Riyadh

Over the years, Riyadh has become one of the most prosperous cities in the Middle east. From shopping malls, restaurants, and museums, Riyadh has been the number 1 tourist destination. You can go biking in the red dunes, or make your way to the world-class Riyadh zoo. Riyadh is recognized for its outdoor festivals and events.

Jeddah

Jeddah is known for its contemporary skyscrapers and incident villages. As one of the largest cities of Saudi Arabia, Jeddah is an economic hub and a tourist destination. The famous Jeddah sculpture museum is a must-visit. It has the essence of Arabic traditions and monumental art. It has a beautiful floating mosque that you can visit any time of the day or offer prayers. You can visit the souks in Jeddah and learn more about their culture.

Don’t Forget to Have Fun

It can be stressful to plan out your vacation or travel plans, ensure to make your flight schedule on time and get to where you need to be. But remember that the whole point of your trip is to relax, meet a certain objective, and be present. Experts would suggest to be mindful and ensure to have a great time as you move around!

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Travel Tips

7 Best Ways to Explore Greece

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Greece has everything to offer travellers–whether you want to explore bustling cities, relax on pristine islands, learn about fascinating culture, or just soak up the sunshine. Whatever you decide, we hope this list helps inspire your next trip to the country.

Visit Athens

Athens is one of Europe’s most beautiful cities and should be at the top of every traveller’s itinerary when visiting Greece. This thriving metropolis boasts of over 1 million inhabitants and a rich history dating back to 3000 BC. Overlooking the Saronic Gulf, the Acropolis dominates the skyline with its distinctive minaret-like structure built upon layers of rock.

Its construction started under Pericles and continued right up till 1828. For centuries now, Athenians have lived side by side with their past glory. Athens offers plenty of reasons to visit its many museums and monuments, including the Acropolis, Keramikos museum, Ancient Agora Museum, National Archaeological Museum and more.

Sightsee the Peloponnese Peninsula

The Peloponnese peninsula stretches southwards from Sparta and includes the largest cities of southern Greece: Corinth, Argolis, Patras and Larissa. Its mountainous terrain provides excellent conditions for walking, biking, para-gliding, rock climbing and mountaineering. The area is dotted with small settlements, monasteries, castles, and churches dating back centuries.

Take a boat tour along the Greek Islands

The best way to see the beauty of the Greek Islands when you visit Greece is by taking a cruise ship vacation. You’ll experience breathtaking views as well as enjoy an authentic island lifestyle that’s unlike anywhere else in the world. There are dozens of different cruises available throughout the Mediterranean Sea; however, there are only two main types: coastal tours and offshore trips.

Coastal tours take passengers near shore while offshore excursions allow them to travel farther out into the open sea. If you’re looking for something between these two options, consider a mix of both. For example, a combination of a coastal tour followed by an overnight sail will give you time to spend ashore before returning home. For the best experience, consider renting a private boat or yacht.

Get into the water activities at Mykonos

Mykonos is known for being one of the world’s top destinations for windsurfing, kite surfing, parasailing, scuba diving, jet skiing and yachting. Whether you prefer land-based sports or sea adventures, you won’t get bored on Mykonos. Several companies run organised trips to different locations around the island. However, if you’d like to venture off the beaten track, there are several opportunities to rent equipment locally.

Watch sunset drinks while sitting by the beach

Kos offers several great locations for watching sunsets. One particular area worth checking out is at Kasteloura Beach where you’ll find a bar serving cocktails with fantastic views across the water. Alternatively, head to Platis Gialos harbour, where you will spot dolphins playing around the boats moored nearby.

Have breakfast overlooking the sea in Corfu Town

Corfu town sits right next to the beautiful bay of Laganas, where it enjoys views over the Gulf of Mirabello. This picturesque location means that this part of Corfu will always be busy, especially during summer months. However, even though there are plenty of bars and clubs, most people still choose to enjoy their breakfasts here.

Wander through old town Patras

Patras used to be one of the largest cities in southern Europe until the 19th century. It keeps much of its original charm despite being modernised. The old quarter contains ancient churches, narrow streets lined with restaurants, cafés and boutiques. There’s also lots to do beyond wandering around the old town; take boat trips or visit the Aquarium of Southern Italy.

Enjoy seafood fresh off the grill in Halkidiki

Halkidiki is a popular choice among tourists looking for cheap holidays in Greece. With so many activities available, no matter what your interests may be, you’re bound to have fun!

Do a wine tasting in Rethymno

The Greek island of Crete is most commonly associated with luxury resorts, high end cuisine and glitzy nightclubs. However, those seeking something more down to earth will enjoy visiting the small towns scattered throughout the region. Among them is Rethymnon located along the southern coast. Here, visitors can sample some delicious wines before heading home.

Greece has been attracting travellers since antiquity. Today, thousands flock here every summer hoping to experience this beautiful country first hand. From exploring bustling markets to relaxing on pristine islands, there’s plenty to see and do in Greece. Whether you choose to stay in cosmopolitan Athens or explore remote villages dotted all over the Aegean Sea, there’s always an adventure waiting just round the corner.

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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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