Top 10 Safest Countries and Destinations 2016

Porto Portugal Europe
Worried about safety when travelling?  Consider these countries for your next trip to ease your anxieties.

 

#10 Canada

A video posted by Rain Travels (@ra_raines) on

Although many see Canada as being very similar to the U.S.A., there are a lot of differences between the two countries.  Canada has one of the highest standards of living in the world and one of the lowest unemployment rates.  It rarely sees acts of terrorism, although some of its major cities have a minor amount of violent crime.  Overall, Canadians are very open, multicultural, and welcoming and unlike their U.S. neighbours, have strict gun laws.

 

#9 Slovenia
Formerly part of Yugoslavia, Slovenia experienced its violent uprising in the 90s, but has since emerged as one of the safest nations in the world. The country now rarely sees violent protests, engages in few international conflicts, and has low crime rates.  Known for both its coastline and scenic alps, there is something for everyone in this up and coming country.

Read more

Top European Destinations for U.S. Travellers

Italy Venice Contiki European Discovery Summer

MMGY’s annual study on American travelers was just released.  The study includes the top European cities Americans are seriously considering visiting over the next two years.

Top Cities for US travellers 2016

The study, which has been conducted for more than 20 years, surveyed nearly 3,000 active travelers living in the U.S. with an annual household income of at least $50,000 (with 815 respondents having an annual household income of $125,000 or more). They also took at least one leisure trip of 75 miles or more during the previous 12 months that included overnight accommodations. Respondents were evenly distributed between males and females and between all generations.

Read more

Spa weekend in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic

Karlovy Vary Main Square

The breathtaking beauties of Karlovy Vary (known also by its’ German name Carlsbad) are not simply worth your attention, it inspires admiration and respect! By becoming one of the admirers, you add yourself to a list that includes Beethoven, Peter the Great, Schiller, Chopin and many other famous artists.

 

Karlovy Vary is the home of various warm springs, established in early 1368. Ever since, it has been the preferred destination for holidays, as well as the host of many international conferences and festivals. Covered with amazing gardens and creative flower arrangements, Karlovy Vary is Europe’s “Venice of healthy waters”.

Read more

Florence, Italy Must-Do at Night – And It’s Free!

Florence Italy Night Stroll

It goes without saying that there’s plenty to do while visiting Florence, Italy. But one thing that everyone should do (and it’s free!) is see all the main sites during the middle of the night. The way the city lights up the main attractions at night makes for great photos, not to mention there’s no crowds! Don’t worry as it’s quite safe to do this at night as Florence overall is a very safe city with security guards found at most attractions.

Here’s a mini-preview of what you’ll see in a mini photo essay format.  All photos taken with an iPhone 5C between 3am – 4am.

 

Florence Italy Night Walk

Read more

The Hidden Gem of Italy – The Top Reasons to Visit Bologna

Italy Hidden Gem Bologna Italy

I was fortunate enough to be invited by Emilia Romagna Region Tourist Board and Bologna Welcome to discover the beautiful region of Bologna, Italy. As usual, my objective was to discover hidden gems around the area that’s off the beaten path.

Overall, the region was unbelievably beautiful with very friendly people. If I could sum up the experience in one sentence, it would be that Bologna is a city where non-Italians become Italian. It’s a city full of authentic local experiences from family owned restaurants, historic buildings and outdoor markets.

So without further ado, here are the top reasons to visit (and even live) in Bologna, Italy.

Read more

Move Over Waygu Beef, Chianina is the next Beef Trend!

Thick Raw T-Bone Steak with Seasoning and Rosemary

Waygu beef has long held the crown for the best beef in the world for its tender texture and succulent flavour.  As the demand for good beefs and steaks increases worldwide, one can only wonder, what is the next best thing?

The answer lies in the heart of Tuscany, Italy.  As if there isn’t enough reason to visit the area, Chianina beef is making the region even more famous.  The Chianina breed is becoming the latest foodie steak trend in the U.S. as its beef is delightfully tender, tasteful and very low in fat.

 

Chianina Beef Trend Tuscany Italy

Read more

Hike to Heaven from Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona Spain Hiking Reviews

Walking through the centre of Barcelona, you are surrounded by the city. Concrete, cobblestones, glass, metal, cars, people, dogs, hustle and bustle. It’s very easy to get sucked into the busy pace of the city – the parties, the concerts, the shopping, the cleaning, the working, the gyming, the life. You begin to long for an escape, a moment of peace, a pause to catch your breath and calm your mind. What you forget is that you are actually in a beautiful part of Spain surrounded by natural wonders, wildlife and opportunities for outdoor adventures.

If you take the plunge, then go to Plaza Espanya and buy a ticket and jump on a train for an hour. As Barcelona fades into the distance behind you, salvation rises ahead of you in the form of the impressive and imposing Montserrat – ‘the jagged mountain’. The mountain named for its serrated edges and mounds that are haphazardly astounding.

Read more

Crimea Ukraine/Russia: Is Travel Possible?

Crimea Ukraine Russia Hiking Travel Sunrise

Crimea has been in the news a lot over the past year.  It’s an unfortunate circumstance for its image and tourism, which is sad considering the beauty of the peninsula.  But when it comes to travel, is it safe?

Luckily, it’s a lot easier than you think.  We hope that the below information and photo-essay will motivate you to visit the peninsula some day. Enjoy!

 

Red line: From Kiev Blue line: Return to Kiev
Red line: From Kiev – Blue line: Return to Kiev

General transport guide:
From Kiev, take a train to Simferopol
Take a bus from Simferopol to Sevastopol
Take a bus from Sevastopol to Balaklava
Hike from Balaklava to Yalta – Expect 4 to 5 days
Bus from Yalta to Laspi
Laspi back to Simferopol by bus, then train back to Kiev by train

Read more

Andorra – Skiing in the Land of No Taxes

Andora Ski Snowboarding Trip Tips Travel Ski lift

Taxes. What a drag. We work and work and give half our money away. Okay, so it’s necessary, but nobody likes seeing their pay-check being chopped by tax. Wouldn’t it be lovely if there was a place where tax didn’t exist? Where the world was duty-free and you could make your cash go a little bit further?

Every heard of Andorra? Andorra is a tiny principality in the Pyrenees between the borders of France and Spain, and, wait for it, it’s tax free! And just to add to the allure of this place, it also has some gnarly ski slopes and resorts dotted all over the place. So you have tax-free and powder. Taxfree and powder! Oh the joy. Who bestowed this gem on the earth?

Andora Ski Snowboarding Trip Tips Travel Slope

Read more