Bordeaux, France Travel Guide

Bordeaux is a region where charm and history flow freely just like the well-known wine produced in this area. A vacation to this city is one for all the senses. Delve into Bordeaux’s fascinating history of wine country and ‘taste’ the fruits of its labor. From the vineyards that are living pieces of history to the museums specially dedicated to the city’s history. Here are the top attractions in Bordeaux, France.

Cathedrale St Andre
The adorable Cathedrale St Andre dominates Bordeaux’s city center. First sanctified in 1096, only one wall remains from this time and much of this cathedral dates back from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. This masterpiece is considered the most beautiful and largest religious building in Aquitaine. Its towers soar to 265 ft. and inside you’ll find the magnificent Marcade collection of 42 illuminations as well as other religious artefacts. Besides the cathedral, Tour Pey Berland bell tower presents visitors with an opportunity for fabulous views and a challenging climb.

Opera National de Bordeaux
This opera house is housed in the majestic Grand Theatre of Bordeaux. Ever since it was inaugurated in 1780, it has hosted several operas, ballets, and other performances. Opera National de Bordeaux was designed to be the arts temple by Victor Louis, and he has definitely achieved that. From the soaring auditorium to the imposing staircase and entrance hall, the skill and scale of this building’s construction are truly spectacular.

Place de la Bourse
The breathtaking Place de la Bordeaux is perhaps Bordeaux’s most iconic sight. Built by Louis XV’s First Architect, Ange-Jacques Gabriel, this edifice dominates the Garonne banks. This square is loved by both locals and visitors and makes a great place for a stroll. It is bordered on three sides by the central pavilion, Hotel des Fermes, and Hotel de la Bourse.

St. Seurin Basilica
Dating back to the 11th century, St Seurin Basilica is one of Bordeaux’s oldest buildings. It was built by the monks to accommodate pilgrims on the pilgrimage route of Saint James de Compostela. In the 13th century, the church was added to with the construction of a Gothic entrance and again in the 14th and 15th centuries with the construction of many chapels. The surrounding grounds and large structures make for a peaceful oasis in the center of the city.

Pont de Piere
This is a landmark bridge that connects the left bank with the right bank of the Garonne River. Completed in 1822, this was the first bridge that was built across the Garonne. Walking under the ornate streetlamps of the bridge in the evening is romantic and lovely.

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A visit to Naples, Italy

Naples is raw, a place of panoramas and soul-stirring art, unexpected elegance and spontaneous conversations. Welcome to the most unlikely masterpiece in Italy. The wealth of cultural assets in Naples is extraordinary. You will find ancient ruins, three castles and royal palaces. Some friends of mine who own an Edmonton wedding DJ company absolutely loved their time in Naples and couldn’t say enough good things about it. Thanks to their input and some of my own research, I’ve put together the top attractions in Naples, Italy.

Museo Archeologico Nazionale
You will find some of the finest collections of Graeco-Roman artifacts in this national archaeological museum. It was a cavalry barracks originally and later seat of Naples University. This museum was established in the late eighteenth-century by Charles VII, the Bourbon king to house antiquities inherited from his mother and treasures looted from Herculaneum and Pompeii. Highlights include the celebrated Farnese Bull (Toro Farnese) sculpture and breathtaking mosaics from Casa del Fauno. The ground-floor features a collection of colossal Roman and Greek sculptures. The rest of the ground floor is devoted largely to fascinating discoveries from Cuma, Stabiae, Boscoreale, Herculaneum, and Pompeii.

Museo di Capodimonte
Designed originally as a hunting lodge for King Charles VII of Bourbon, the construction of this monumental place started in 1738 and took over a century to finish. It is now home to this art gallery which is the richest and largest in southern Italy. Its vast collection ranges from 12th-century altarpieces to works by Warhol, Titian, Caravaggio, and Botticelli. The gallery has 160 rooms spread over 3 floors. The 1st floor features works by greats such as Titian, Raphael, and Michelangelo, with highlights including Parmigianino’s Antea, Bellini’s Transfiguration, and Masaccio’s Crucifixion.

Cappella Sansevero
It is in this Masonic-inspired chapel you will find Giuseppe Sanmartino’s magnificent sculpture, Veiled Christ (Cristo velato). Its marble veil is so realistic that it is very tempting to lift it and view Christ beneath. It is one of the many artistic wonders that include the colorful frescoes by Francesco Russo, Antonio Corradini’s Pudicizia, and Francesco Queirolo’s Disinganno sculpture.

Certosa e Museo di San Martino
The high point of the baroque of Neapolitan, this charterhouse-turned-museum was between 1325 and 1368 built as a Carthusian monastery. Centered on one of Italy’s most beautiful cloisters, it has been altered, adorned and decorated over the years by some of the finest talent in Italy, most notably Cozimo Fanzago, a baroque sculptor and Giovanni Antonio Dosio, an architect. Today, it is an excellent repository of Italian and Neapolitan artistry. The monastery’s church as well as the chapter house, treasury and sacristy that flank it contain several paintings and frescoes by some of the greatest 17th-century artists of Naples, among them Massimo Stanzione, Guido Reni, Jusepe de Ribera, and Battista Caracciolo.

Catacombe di San Gennaro
The most sacred and oldest catacombs in Naples became a pilgrimage site when the body of San Gennaro was in the 5th century interred here. This carefully restored site lets visitors to experience an evocative world of broad vestibules, corridors and tombs. Its treasures include 5th-century mosaics, 2nd-century Christian frescoes, and the oldest portrait of San Gennaro.

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5 Things to Do in Shibuya Tokyo

Shibuya is the ward of Tokyo that encompasses music, fashion, and food. It’s a shopper’s paradise, and it has a thriving nightlife as well as an entertaining scene for urban youth. Shibuya is big and exploring it on foot may take time. Here are 5 top things to do in Shibuya, Tokyo.

Shibuya Scramble
Shibuya Station is a pretty large station with many lines connecting. It is a hub obviously and there is a view of Shibuya crossing right here at the window. One of the iconic images of Tokyo which you will see in movies and travel photos is the Shibuya crossing aka Shibuya Scramble. This has to be like the biggest district crossing in the world, I don’t even think Times Square can equal it.

As much as it is impressive to see Shibuya scramble from above, it is equally thrilling to cross the scramble and feel a part of the massive pedestrian sea. If the view from the station wasn’t enough, then you could cross the street to the Tsutaya building. The building has its entertainment from music, books, and DVDs but the view from the second floor of Starbucks is front row seating. Grabbing a window seat there can be tricky, if you happen to manage to steal a seat there please observe Japanese etiquette when there’s limited seating. Don’t be a space hog, have your drink and go.

Hachiko Statue
When you get to Shibuya Station, you will see a statue of a dog. Hachiko was a faithful dog and his master loved him like a son. So every day Hachiko will go to Shibuya Station to meet his master and one day his master didn’t arrive. Hachiko waited at Shibuya Station each day for his master for seven years. He was immortalized for this reason.

Center Gai
Right next door to the Tsutaya building is Center Gai. The street is recognized by its colorful arch and it is called Center Gai because it’s the center of Shibuya. It’s lined with shops and fast-food restaurants. It’s a lively youthful area and the clubs here stay open until dawn.

VR Park Tokyo
There is a VR experience where you get to be in your favorite game. If you are into gaming, VR Park Tokyo is a several story game center. It may not be your cup of tea until you step inside because the games here and the prizes sure look fun.

Mega Don Quijote
My favorite one-stop shopping in Tokyo is Don Quijote. It is a multi-level mall selling anything you can imagine at discount prices. Shibuya, however, has a mega Don Quixote – it’s open 24 hours and has tax free counters for tourists if you bring your passports.

Shibuya is quite large with more things to do than I can list, so let me know what you would recommend.

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Visit to Bahamas

Located just 50 miles off the Florida coast, the Bahamas are ready-made for exploration filled with a unique blend of ethnicity and cultures. Nassau on the island of New Providence is the capital city and the heart of the Bahamas. With 70 percent of the population living here, it is the commercial and economic center of the Commonwealth.

Straw Market
Stroll by the straw market on Bay Street for some beautiful, handcrafted straw bags. Walk a bit further and check out the flamingo pink Parliament building near Ross and square. If you are feeling adventurous, climb the sixty-five steps of the Queen staircase – one step for each year of Queen Victoria’s reign.

Aquaventure Waterpark
If you are traveling with kids, head to Atlantis on Paradise Island. They can experience all the pools rapids and water slides they can handle at Aquaventure Waterpark.

Long Island
165 miles southeast of Nassau is Long Island. Far from the bustle of Nassau as big-city life, it provides a perfect getaway of beautiful beaches, white churches, and some traditional Bahamian cuisine. One of the biggest draws to Long Island is Dean’s Blue Hole, the world’s deepest blue sinkhole. At 663 feet deep, this massive natural phenomenon is a favorite for both snorkelers and divers who come to explore its mysterious depths.

Abaco Islands
Though the outer islands of the Bahamas might be described as sleepy, the Abaco Islands will be the first to shake off the snooze. Yachtsman and divers flock to this glittering crescent of islands and keys for sailing, reef diving, and sunny ports of call.

Man O’War Cay
On Man O’War Cay, you can see how the boat building tradition has been passed down over the centuries. You can watch the local artisans working on their handmade bags. Strolling through this friendly town is a real treat for any visitor.

Hope Town
Just a short ferry ride away, a candy-striped lighthouse watches over the colorful homes within Hope Town. The town’s history can be found at the Y Annie Malone Museum which houses artifacts from the record years when the town made a living salvaging the ships that wrecked on its shores. Today life in Hope town is much more laid-back, take a walk through town on one of the many narrow footpaths and you will soon feel like part of the community.

Harbour Island
Escape to Harbour Island in Eleuthera with a rich and famous a rumor to hide out and visit pink sands beach. Grab your golf cart and head inland to Dunmore Town, a hundred year old village lined with quiet streets and colorful wooden homes. This small area boasts some of the best colonial architecture in the Bahamas.

Exuma Islands
If you want to get off the beaten path, head to the Exuma islands where you can relax on the beach, swim in turquoise water, snorkel near one of the many caves, or mingle with some of the island’s local inhabitants.

With so many possibilities, it’s easy to see why the Bahamas continued to be one of the world’s most famous island getaways.

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Koh Phangan Complete Travel Guide

Koh Phangan is one of my favorite islands in the world and I think this place is very unique compared to all the other islands you could visit in Thailand. It has a laid-back vibe as well as beautiful beaches and offers plenty of freedom for the people that come here. This will be a full travel guide about Koh Phangan and I will share with you everything I know about the island so you can have your best stay here.

How to Get There

Koh Phangan is located next to Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand. It doesn’t have an airport so you have to beat it by ferry. There are two main ways to get here by plane: you can take the convenient but more expensive way and take a flight from Bangkok to the island of Samui and then take a quick 30-minute ferry ride to Koh Phangan which cost around $140 one way or you take the cheaper but longer route with a flight to Surat Thani, then a two-hour bus ride to the coast followed by another 2.5 hour ferry trip to Bhangarh. The cheaper way cost around $40 one-way, so it’s quite a big difference.

Accommodation on Phangan

Although there are some luxury hotels on the island, most of the accommodations are rather good standard or basic bungalows right next to a beautiful beach. You could either book a hotel or go for an AirBnB but either way you can expect to find anything between $30 and $150 per night depending on what you are looking for.


Location is key on Phangan because the island is bigger than you might think and depending on what you are expecting from your stay you should choose the accommodation properly. If you want to stay far away from everything, I would recommend the entire north and northwest of the island. If you want to have a bit of everything and want to be able to reach all the places around the island quickly, I would recommend staying somewhere in the Thong Sala which is also the only real town on the island. From there, almost everything is the same distance so no matter where you want to go you can reach it fairly quickly.

If you are just coming here to party, I can recommend staying in Haad Rin or somewhere next to it. Haad Rin is a beach on the far southeast of the island and it is famous for hosting the full moon party once a month. There are a lot of party tourists there and even though partying can be nice on Phangan I wouldn’t necessarily stay in this area because you might miss out on what the island has to offer apart from them.

Getting Around the Islands

There are three main ways to get around the island – by rental car, motorbike, or by taxi. Since all the taxis here are controlled by one Taxi Company, the prices are quite high and services not really that good. The only times I would recommend taking a taxi is when you are going to a party and want to drink alcohol. Renting cars might be an option for some people but in general I would say it’s not really necessary and by far the best way to get around the island is renting your own motorbike or scooter. It’s one of the main reasons I love this place so much because driving a motorbike here gives you the ultimate feeling of freedom.

It’s fairly safe and convenient. You have to pay around $6 to $8 per day for motorbike and you have to give them your passport as a deposit. Don’t be worried about this as it is just a normal procedure in Southeast Asia because they need to have some form of security. If you choose your rental shop wisely for instance by checking Google ratings everything will be fine and you won’t regret it. As a matter of fact, I wouldn’t even recommend Phangan to anyone who isn’t willing to rent his own motorbike because it has such a huge impact on how good your experience will be on the island.


The food in Phangan is amazing and still fairly cheap compared to other regions in Thailand like some parts of Bangkok or Samui. You can get awesome local Thai food for $2 or choose from the plenty of international restaurants that are run by foreigners and offer good quality as well. There are also lots of good cafes around the island and coffee would be around $1.50 or fresh fruit smoothie around $1.

I hope this travel guide helps you make your next trip to Phangan an unforgettable experience.

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Kuching, Malaysia Travel Guide

Kuching is the capital of Sarawak and Borneo most populous city. Kuching’s colorful history reads like an adventure novel. With its architectural and cultural treasures, it has a lot to offer visitors to this city. We advise you to set some days aside to truly appreciate this magical city. There are several museums you can explore in Kuching. Prominent among them is the Sarawak Museum. It is considered one of the finest museums in Southeast Asia. You will also find many historic buildings here such as the Astana which is the former palace of the white Rogers and the Fort Margherita.

There are many national parks close to Sarawak, they include Semenggoh and Matang Wildlife centers where you can see orangutans, Kubah with its rare orchids and palms, Kuching Wetlands with a fascinating mangrove ecosystem, Gunung Gading where you will see giant rafflesia flowers, and Baki which houses the rare proboscis monkey. There are also hundreds of Bidayuh and Iban longhouses within easy traveling distance. Sarawak’s main resort area is Damai that is located on the nearby Santubong Peninsula. You can also explore Kuching by visiting the rainforest and Bako or go on a longhouse trip. After the rigors of jungle trekking, you can relax on the beach.

Kuching has many modern skylines and the city’s heart pulsates with vibrant markets, houses, shops, and lanes that have only changed a bit in the past decades. Kuching is popular for its beautiful sunsets and it is a city that stays up late as visitors and locals mingle in the many restaurants, bars, and cafes along the waterfront. Kuching is also a perfect place to explore the surrounding beach resorts and national parks. One of the best ways you can experience this area is by peddling up the river on one of the kayak tours.

Like many cities and towns in Kuching, the reason for Kuching’s existence and its focal point is the river. The best way to get your first experience of this beautiful island is to hire a sampan to meander you slowly through the Sarawak River. You will get the chance to see a wooden-roofed palace, an entire street of Chinese stop houses from the 19th century, a Victorian fort, a golden mosque as well as a Malay Village set against the distant mountainous background.

Kuching is immersed in nature’s sights and sounds as well as a green whirl of towering trees, you will experience a Borneo that changed a bit over the years. This city is home to friendly and relaxed people and it is so close to the best of Sarawak. It is easy to see why this city is considered one of the best-kept secrets of Malaysia.

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