Category Archives: Travel

Wing Lee Street – An Image of the Past

The attractive Wing Lee Street provides a glimpse into Hongkong as it existed many years ago. This fascinating enclave contains many tenement buildings which once housed a harmonious and closely knit community.

The cosmopolitan city of Hongkong offers many interesting experiences for the visitor. In addition to modern malls and varied shopping opportunities the city also offers interesting places to visit, such as historically and culturally significant districts.

One of these captivating areas is the well-known Wing Lee Street. This lane is not an imposing site and it is not a modern showpiece. In contrast it presents an intriguing glimpse of the city as it existed many decades ago before the advent of modernity. The tenement style buildings known as tong Laus which are found here are unlike others found anywhere in the city as they are constructed in sets of clusters on a common terrace. This style of construction is not to be seen in other parts of Hongkong.

In recent years Wing Lee Street has come into the international limelight as it was featured in the well-known motion picture ‘Echoes of the Rainbow’. This memorable film which starred Simon Yam gave Hongkong its first prestigious Crystal Bear prize at Berlin’s well recognized international movie festival. In fact the creators of this film have called for the preservation of this unique urban environment.

Additionally this fascinating film has made many of its viewers actually visit the street, captivated by its historical and cultural legacy. The quaint residential buildings evoke images of an era when its residents were a closely knit interlinked community which lived in harmony and shared each others’ joys and sorrows.

Interestingly many of the local businesses were printing shops as many printers moved their businesses to this part of the city. Even today you will find a few such businesses still in operation. Some of the local buildings have been renovated but have not been transformed into shops or restaurants. You will also find an interesting information centre which displays photographs of the original buildings as they once existed. With so much to see and admire a visit to Wing Lee Street will always be enthralling.

If you are visiting the city and are interested in a 4 star hotel Hongkong an outstanding choice would be the Cosmo Hotel. This Hongkong boutique hotel offers attractive interiors and gracious hospitality.

Free Air Travel, Free Hotels and Free Car Rentals

Free Travel, Free Hotels and Free Car Rentals are possible. This is an amazing opportunity from American Express Canada to Refer-A-Friend. Get up to 30,000 points very quickly with just 1 credit card application. Get another 25,000 with another, 15,000 with another and so on.

This is an amazing way to “rack up” some TRAVEL POINTS FOR FREE. American Express has several cards, most of them have the first year’s fee waived. Then you can start traveling for free! This is also a great opportunity to fly in Business Class, First Class or Premium Economy.

Don’t miss out on this great opportunity to fly for free. Or if you prefer, you can also get FREE HOTELS or FREE CAR RENTALS.

And start enjoying the good life thanks to American Express Refer-A-Friend.

Here are all the Bonuses:

The Platinum Card

Complimentary airport lounge access world-wide through the Platinum Lounge Benefit1 and the Airport Club Program. Earn 1.25 Membership Rewards points for every dollar in purchases charged to your Platinum Card.

You can earn up to 30,000 bonus Membership Rewards points. Earn 10,000 bonus Membership Rewards points upon first use of the Card and 20,000 points when you charge $500 in purchases to the Card in the first 3 months of Card membership.

The American Express Gold Rewards Card

Earn double points on eligible travel and everyday purchases. Travel whenever, wherever, however you like with Trip Flex TM rewards. Transfer your points one-to-one to Aeroplan. Travel Insurances and Services that can give you the peace of mind to experience all of the adventures ahead of you.No annual fee for the first year. A savings of $150

You can earn 15,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you charge $500 in purchases to your Card in the first 3 months of Card membership, plus you pay no annual fee for the first year

The American Express Business Gold Rewards Card

No limit to the number of Membership Rewards points you can earn, plus earn up to 40,000 bonus points each year. Book any travel you can find, then call us to pay for it with points, taxes and fees too,2 or transfer your points one to one to Aeroplan. $180 annual fee waived for the first year (30% annual interest rate applies to balances not paid in full).

Earn 25,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you charge $3,000 in purchases to your Card in the first 3 months of Card membership, plus pay no annual fee for the first year.

The Business Platinum Card from American Express

For every dollar in purchases charged to your Card1 earn 1.25 Membership Rewards points. Relax or catch up on business with access to over 600 airport lounges around the world, and receive extras at world-class resorts

This is a great opportunity and it will not last long.

Checklist for Travelers to Canada

One way to get to know a person is to travel with him or her. People’s true personality tends to emerge when they are dealing with stress. They also reveal their maturity, sense of responsibility, and other positive qualities’ or lack there of when faced with situations with which they are not familiar. However, that does not necessarily mean that you should seek out stressful travel situations in order to discover your travel companion’s true personality. It therefore pays to anticipate difficulties when traveling with others and to be ready for them.

If you are traveling to Canada, the first priority is to be sure to carry your travel documents. If you are from the United States, you need to have a valid passport, permanent residence card or nexus card (US citizens and permanent residents are allowed to enter Canada without a visa). If you come from a country that is not included on Canada’s visa-exempt list, then you should have your travel documents and visas ready. Border officers and airport customs will check these documents before they grant you entry into the country or even allow you to board an airplane flying to Canada.

Those who are traveling on temporary resident visas should also bring their visitors to Canada insurance documents in case border officers ask to see it. To be safe, you should also bring photocopies of all of your travel and identification documents.

Of course, a traveler’s checklist should include appropriate clothing. The type of clothes you need to bring to Canada will depend upon the time of year that you will be there, and the place where you will be staying.

If you are in Canada for the summer, you can bring your usual summer clothes: t-shirts, shorts, jeans, and other light clothing. You should also bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and hats for UV protection. Summers in Canada can get very hot, just as it can get very cold during the winter. If your visit occurs during this season, do not forget to bring your warmest jackets, boots, and long underwear. You should also bring wind breakers, gloves, scarves, mufflers, and hats. The cold winds can get very strong during winter, especially if you are headed to the prairies – Manitoba, Saskatchewan and northern Alberta. Actually, anywhere in the North will be cold.

Canada has plenty of outdoor adventure attractions, so there is a chance that you will go hiking or exploring the outdoors. You should definitely bring a pair of sturdy hiking boots, or at least walking shoes. Even if you do not plan to go hiking or trekking, walking through snowy streets still requires a pair of boots. Be sure not to forget warm socks as well!

There are also cities in Canada, in northern Ontario, Quebec and the Acadian regions of the Maritimes, where Canadian French is widely spoken. The people of Quebec, for instance, often prefer not to speak English even if they can understand it. So do not forget to bring a French phrasebook with you.

Finally, you should have a widely-accepted credit card in your wallet at all times. Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted in most stores, hotels, restaurants, and other commercial establishments.

Wilderness at its Best in Canada

Canada is one of the tourist destinations known for its dynamic cultural heritage. It is a best place for a family vacations. Vacations in Canada are best if you plan your trip well in advance.

History of Canada is colorful and it’s interesting to know about this. The history of Canada goes back 26,500 years with Paleo-Indians who populated in North America. They got adapted to the environment of that land and settled there. You can still find the influence of these Aborigines. From traditional music and dance to art to their own unique language. This feeling can be felt in most modern cities of Canada.

You can travel to Canada with ease due to rich transport options. You can take flight from any part of world to Canada. If you are from neighboring countries then you can also take a car to reach here.

Canada tourism is a great adventure trip for entire family. Arctic safaris take you to a side of Canada which is Somerset Island. This place is a heaven on Earth and you can dig for fossils and enjoy the wonderful scenes of Sea. Sunset at this place happens at 2 am and if you can awake to this time you can experience an amazing view. Glimpses of sky will fill your heart with joy at this time.

If you are a party animal, then go to Montreal. You can enjoy delicious food in modern restaurants here. Vibrant nightlife of this place makes this place best for party. You can also spend time at Cirque du Soleil where you can see the extensive cultural scene.

Niagara Falls in Canada is famous in world as it is the largest waterfall. This is the landmark of Canada and thousands of visitors come here every year to view this exclusive scene. Canada trip cannot be completed without a trip to Niagara Falls.

So have fun in Canada with your family and friends and live life King size this vacation season.

Tour Operators in Kolkata for Easy and Tailor Made International Travel

Traveling to abroad countries has become a cherished fashion in the recent era. There was a time when wealthy people all over the world enjoyed international vacations. Traveling abroad merely for vacations was something that was not everyone’s cup of tea. Time has changed. People are no more limited in traveling inside our country alone. Growing affordability and changing attitudes towards life have made international traveling much more popular in the recent era. If you look through your cable channels, you would find how many traveling channels have been added recently onto your cable network.

For a first timer, traveling abroad is always a feeling of hesitation, uncertainty, and to certain extent of fear. Most of the common people who have traveled before overseas find it much confusing whether their planning is appropriate. If you are the one to plan an international holiday very first time, it is always better to take help of an international tour operator. Remember that traveling abroad is truly not simple as traveling inside the country. You need to take care of so many aspects before leaving ground of your homeland. In such a situation, a reliable international tour operator is the one, who can guide you best will all necessary doable.

Whether you take help of a tour operator or not, it is always wise to know all necessary aspects before traveling overseas. Here are some tips that would help you making a foreign travel much easier and smooth.

Your preliminary task is to choose a decent location for traveling. If you are a first-time international traveler, you should choose a holiday destination that is popularly liked by Indians. It is never advisable for anyone to pick a destination that is less visited and less popular, no matter how scenic or relevant the place may be. For example, South Eastern Asian countries like Singapore, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, and other European countries such as France, Paris, London, and Italy are much exciting holiday destinations preferred by the Indians. For the first time, try to choose a location from among such a long list of countries that are equally beautiful and stimulating.

As you are traveling to a foreign land first time, you must try to develop knowledge about local details of the travel locations. If you have planned for Bangkok and Pattaya, try to go through all possible information about these places. It is not only for the sake of safety, but also for the sake of greater exploration of the places. When you already know about the local details where you are traveling, you would certainly find it more interesting.

The Document Attestation Required Before Going Abroad

The whole world is becoming a global village by each passing day. More and more people are ready to explore cross border opportunities which are available readily. The growing popularity of the region of Middle East points towards the fact that the region has gained prominence and has become a job hub which is attracting hundreds and thousands of individuals everyday to visit the country and carve out a promising career for themselves.

While going to a foreign country you must pay attention to certain important tasks which when completed facilitates your smooth and hassle free entry. Certificate attestation is one such task which should not and cannot be overlooked as it stands out as the most important pre – requisite which needs to be fulfilled. Degree attestation is the fundamental process of providing authenticity to the various educational documents you carry while traveling to a foreign land. The documents have to pass through a long line up of government bodies whose signatures and seal is required in the process of document validation.

As and when the original set of documents reaches the concerned government department and authority they perform the necessary steps so that the documents can be presented as a set of legal papers. In the event of visiting a foreign country it is important to carry accredited documents to avoid any kind of inconvenience.

As mentioned, the region of Middle East is a job hub which attracts many a person. There had been instances proving the fact that many individuals possessing fake documents manage to sneak into different countries. Some resort to unfair practices and carry fake certificates to land up a job. To counter such issues, document attestation and apostille comes as an apt solution.

Carrying validated documents saves you from the fingers which might get pointed towards you. You can have a ready and satisfying answer in case somebody eyes you and your documents with suspicion. Document attestation undoubtedly instils in you the added confidence as you have the signatures of the government authorities on your set of documents. The task of document attestation, however, poses the picture of an enduring and tiring task to be completed.

Those who have had a prior experience would agree to the fact that finding a reliable degree attestation agency is a tough task on an individual’s part. Getting a document attestation requires the individual to trust the attestation agency with the original documents so a thorough investigation on the certificate attestation agency is definitely needed. Individual’s should necessarily look into the clientèle of the certificate agency and comprehend the level and degree of the customer satisfaction and take a decision based on that.

How to Plan a Trekking Tour of Bhutan

Do you have Bhutan in your list of next vacation destination? Then gathering information about the various trekking options available in Bhutan will prove a good idea. Normally, you must plan three to six month ahead of your travelling date to allow to travel agent time to process all documents and formalities.

Trekking tours of Bhutan has become really popular recently. This small Himalayan country is nestled amidst high mountains that protect it from all sides. To the western world, Bhutan has remained inaccessible for many years, mainly because of inefficient communication infrastructure. But as travelling to exotic location has become the newest trend demand for unexplored Asian destinations have risen significantly. Bhutan features quite at the top of that list. Trekking is one of the major attractions of Bhutan and also the most famous. It attracts thousands of visitors year round to this quaint little country of Himalaya.

To trekking lovers, Bhutan offers some exciting tracks amidst its picturesque landscape. During the hike tourists can reveal in its natural beauty and indigenous flora and fauna and get a close experience of the vibrant lifestyle of its people and festivals. For most sincere trekkers there is a hike to the most famous point of Bhutan, Taktshang Goemba or the tigress nest, which is 900m above Paro valley. But others can take less rigorous tours under the supervised guidance of experienced tour operators.

Tourism in Bhutan is highly regulated and mostly governed by the Government agencies. All tours must be prepaid and preplanned through a reputed Bhutanese travelling agency. Private tourism isn’t commonplace yet. The best way to travel is with a qualified agency that has specialized in organizing treks Himalaya Bhutan.

The travel agents in Bhutan offer customized trekking tours that they often combine with cultural tour, festival tour, photographic tour, adventure tour, eco -tour or spiritual tour of Bhutan as well. Tourists are given opportunity to get firsthand experience of the effervescent life of the people and their colorful festivals that play very crucial role in their lives.

The photographic tours organize special photographic lessons for enthusiast during their trip to capture its unspoilt nature. Tourists can indulge in adrenaline rushing adventure sports such as rafting, kayaking, biking etc. depending upon tourist requirements these travel agencies are flexible to customize their trips and suggest the best possible solutions.

Trekking trips of Bhutan are often conducted in small groups and these groups are generally formed of people with common interest. Apart from tour operator, who is often an experienced guide, cook and valets too accompany the team to look after the needs and requirements of the team members.

The cost of travelling to Bhutan is moderate. The government and locals promote eco-friendly tourism which helps them preserve the natural wonders of their country. Its natural marvels are scattered across the Paro Valley. Climbers, on their way, can discover many such wonders as they make way towards their destination.

Geography Trips to Study the French Alps

Geography trips to the French Alps are an opportunity for students to improve their understanding of glaciated landscapes and the associated landforms by seeing and studying them for themselves. From dry ski slopes to rivers and gorge formations, the French Alps offer a wealth of options for youngsters seeking to expand their knowledge. Students can also examine the human uses of glaciated areas, and how the lifestyles of people living there are affected by their surroundings. Some potential highlights of geography trips to the French Alps are outlined below.

Gorges du Fier

Considered one of the natural wonders of the Alps, the Gorges du Fier is a stunning gorge carved by the River Fier. Youngsters can walk along a footbridge attached to the side of the gorge, giving excellent views of its features: stacked boulders, the play of light on the gorge walls, the circular ‘Giants’ Kettles’ eroded into the rock by the action of water bearing stones over extended periods of time, and the river running at the gorge’s base.

Gorges du pont du Diable

Another stunning gorge in the French Alps is Gorges du pont du Diable, gouged into grey marble amid a beautiful forest. It creates a link between the Leman’s Lake area and the Chablais Massifs. It can be admired from a footbridge over the rushing river.

Mer de Glace

The Mer de Glace (‘Sea of Ice’) is France’s longest glacier, at seven kilometres long and 200 metres deep, and is an excellent destination for geography trips in the Alps. Easily reachable by the Montenvers Train, it is located in the Chamonix Valley. It originates high in the mountains at an elevation of 2,400 metres and is fed by the confluence of three glaciers. It is renewed by accumulation and ablation, creating crevasses and seracs as it progresses downslope. It is also used for electricity generation, with tunnels bored under the ice to collect water from the glacier’s base and channel it to a hydropower plant downriver: a classic case of human use of the glacial landscape. Students visiting the glacier can also take a cable car to explore an ice grotto.

Barrage d’Emosson

Further evidence of people in the mountains using their landscape can be seen at Barrage d’Emosson, an impressive dam used for hydropower. The dam became operational in 1975. Water collected from the Mont Blanc massif is channelled into a reservoir lake at an altitude of 1,930 metres, which is controlled by the dam. This water is then used to power Vallorcine Power Station and La Bâtiaz Power Station. Visiting the dam on geography trips gives students a good sense of the scale of hydropower operations, as well as the stunning Alpine views around the reservoir.

Holiday Villas Rent Italy: The Latest Trends in the Italian Tourism Field

Villa tourism is one of the greatest phenomena of the Italian tourism in the last years. In fact, many tourists coming from many different countries of the world go to Italy and rent a wonderful villa with garden and swimming pool to spend a relaxing and comfortable holiday with all the family or a large group of friends. People come from many nations, such as United States, Canada, Brazil, Japan and Arabic Emirates, but also from many European countries, such as Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Holland, Belgium, England and Ireland as well.

The most appreciated destinations we find Tuscany, Umbria, Lazio and Amalfi Coast, but also Apulia, Sardinia and Sicily, where tourists can find art, culture, good food and clear waters. Italian tour operators specialized in the field of holiday villas rentals in Italy has generated a 78 million Euros turnover. These data come from a recent study carried out on this topic revealing all the details about this new and interesting phenomenon of the villas rental market in Italy. According to this research, we can talk about the boom of “family reunion”, where senior and young people rent a large house to spend a summer holiday all together in Italy. Italian experts say that luxury vacation villas turnover has increased by 3.4% in the last year. In fact, 1.38 million tourists landed in Italy have rented a total of 1.800 villas and 300 luxury apartments in summer 2013. Most of the foreign tourists spend about 10-11 nights in Italy. The top destination is Tuscany (it represents 50% of “villas tourism” market), after that we find Umbria (that represents 14.4%), and Amalfi Coast (10.1%), where art, culture, sun and clear waters blend in a wonderful mixture. The fourth destination is Le Marche region (4.1% of the tourists choose this place for their vacation). After that, we find Northern Italy Lakes (3.6%) and Liguria region (2.9%), especially the area of Le Cinque Terre. After the top destinations, we find some other emerging regions, such as Apulia, where tourists prefer choosing manor farms and ancient farmhouses for rent.

Visitors always wish to rent a villa with garden, swimming pool and Wi-Fi service and direct access to seaside. Average cost for a mid-summer weekly rental (for an apartment with 8-12 beds) is between 3.500 and 5.000 Euros, whilst a luxury villa is between 8.000 and 12.000 Euros.

School History Trips to Unlock the History of Athens

School history trips bring students into contact with the past, showing them what their texts refer to. In Athens, where ancient monuments still stand, the distant past can be better appreciated: students can know how it felt to stand on the Akropolis beside the imposing Parthenon, or leave the city to visit the nearby Oracle at Delphi. Any school student taking History or Classics classes will benefit from visits to the great city of Athens.

The Akropolis of Athens

The most famous site in Athens is undoubtedly its Akropolis, a citadel on a rocky outcrop rising approximately 150 metres above the centre of the city. It was in use by human habitants of the region for thousands of years before the city of Athens developed and thrived in the Archaic and Classical periods. What stands on the Akropolis today dates to those periods: the Parthenon, the Propylaia, the Erechtheion, the Theatre of Dionysos Eleuthereus, and more.

Visiting the Akropolis of Athens on school history trips, students will first be awed by the marble steps and monumental gateway — the Propylaia — that take them onto the top of the hill. The massive structure of the Parthenon, the temple to the city’s patron goddess Athena, dominates the hilltop and draws all visitors to it. It is a staggering work of ancient architecture and the centre of Athenian celebrations in Athena’s name. Other surviving structures, such as the Erechtheion on the top of the Akropolis — with its porch held up by Caryatids — and the Theatre of Dionysos on the hill’s side, where many of the famous tragedies and comedies of ancient Athens were performed, complete this sensory introduction into the scale and shape of Athenian public life.

The nearby Akropolis Museum is an excellent next stop for students on school history trips, as it provides a wealth of material culture associated with and found on the Akropolis – from spindle whorls to statues. Elsewhere in Athens, sites such as the Temple of Olympian Zeus and Andrian’s Arch are beautiful, well-preserved monuments.

The Oracle at Delphi

Young visitors can trace the steps of many famed people in the ancient world by leaving Athens to visit the Oracle at Delphi. The Athenian tragedian Aeschylus wrote that the significance of Delphi began in prehistory with worship of Gaea, and certainly the site has long been in use, with a wealth of Mycenaean remains found there. Most of the ruins visible on the mountainside today date to the 6th century CE, including the reconstructed Temple of Athens (dedicated at Delphi in honour of the Athenians’ victory at the battle of Marathon) and the remains of the Temple of Apollo, a theatre and a stadium for the Pythian games held at the site. The rock on which the Oracle sat and prophesied is still in situ. Young learners on school history trips can stand beside it and contemplate the role of prophecy in the ancient world.