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Posts Tagged ‘energy’

The Best Places to Travel in November

Bryce Canyon
Editor’s note: Those who choose to travel are strongly encouraged to check local government restrictions, rules, and safety measures related to COVID-19 and take personal comfort levels and health conditions into consideration before departure.

We’re well into autumn, and if you’re wondering what happened to spring and summer, you’re not alone. Our unusual season of staying at home, dining outdoors, camping, road trips, and remote work and school is moving towards winter. Fall weather and changing colors on trees are reminders that natural events continue, and it’s time to get out and enjoy the scenery. We offer a few destinations that may be within driving distance, along with some further away for those of us anxious for a real change.

Related: More fall vacation ideas

Fall weather is ideal for exploring the outdoors in Sedona with its spectacular red rocks and perhaps even a vortex experience for extra energy. The rolling hills of Lexington, Kentucky and its wooded areas provide a colorful backdrop for horse farm visits. For history and late season autumn color, you can head south to Williamsburg, Virginia or to New Orleans for great dining in addition to comfortable weather.

Ski season arrives late in November, and we know there are those who can’t wait for snow. They just might find some in Mammoth Lakes, California or Stowe, Vermont, but if not, they can await snowfall in the beautiful mountain surroundings. Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah also offers fresh air and gorgeous scenery without crowds in November. On the other hand, there are sun seekers who don’t want summer to end, and they can find the perfect beach in Grand Cayman, expected to be open for visitors in November.

Related: 10 Best Fall Vacations for Foliage Views, Fewer Crowds, and Stunning Scenery

In Mexico, San Miguel de Allende will observe Dia de los Muertos traditions with adjustments for COVID-19 safety; visitors can still participate with health guidelines in mind. Wherever you go, be sure to follow local health and safety guidelines, and check the dates and hours of operation for the places you plan to visit as many attractions have reduced hours due to the pandemic.

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Travel for Teens:The Best 2 Week Europe Trip Itinerary

Airline tickets

This Europe trip itinerary for teens is the perfect way to spend 2 weeks in several different countries. If you only have one week in Europe, discover these 20 Europe Trip Itinerary Ideas. 

My friend is taking her teenage daughter on a surprise 2 week Europe trip for her sweet 16 birthday this summer, and I promised to help her plan the itinerary. They are about to take a trip of a lifetime together and they have a big bucket list to get through. It’s an ambitious itinerary, but with just the two of them and the ease of getting around Europe, it’s totally doable and the best way to travel Europe in 2 weeks.

Here are the European countries on their bucket list:

  • England: London
  • France: Paris & The Loire Valley
  • Italy: Lake Como & Rome
  • Greece: Kefalonia

Europe is such a great place to travel for teens. There are so many iconic sites, beautiful scenery, culture, and history that it is hard to be bored when you visit. Even in this article about travel for teens, the top five destinations are in Europe! Maybe you could even get them to put their phones down and take in the sites, or at least take a good selfie with them.

I personally love traveling with teens. They have so much energy and excitement about the world and they’re so much less needy than my little kids (who I also love traveling with). It’s just a completely different experience and I love seeing the world through their eyes.

Travel can be so good for teens too. It can really help them come out of their shell and help them to realize that the world is bigger than their friends and family and that there are so many different ways to live. Here are just a few benefits of travel for teens:

Travel for TeensTravel for Teens

Benefits of travel for teens

  • Teaches Organization: Traveling takes a lot of organization to be able to create an itinerary and follow through.
  • Encourages Budgeting: Travel costs money, and it’s important for teens to learn how to save their money and to learn to spend it on important things, like travel, rather than on things they don’t really need.
  • Breaks Stereotypes: It can be so easy for people to believe stereotypes about different countries and cultures. If there’s one thing that travel teaches us, it’s that people are essentially all the same, despite our country of origin.
  • Teaches Problem Solving: It doesn’t matter how much planning goes into your travels, something is bound to go wrong. Traveling as a teenager helps them to practice problem-solving in a safe environment with an adult present. On my last trip to Italy with my teenage niece, our taxi driver drove off with my phone and wallet. She was able to remain calm and help problem solve until we came to a resolution.
  • Teaches Individualism: Traveling really does help you to discover who you are, and this is true for teens too.

Europe Itinerary 2 Weeks

Europe is also a great trip for teens because you can hit so many different countries and cultures in a short period of time. This is a great list of the best European countries to visit with kids. 

I’ve organized this two-week European itinerary to move smoothly between countries and to have very unique experiences in each destination. It’s a good mix of cultures and active, fun, and educational activities that should keep teenagers engaged and active, ready to make memories with you.

Europe Trip Itinerary for 2 WeeksEurope Trip Itinerary for 2 Weeks

First Stop Day 1-3: London

-Getting to London-

London! Your first stop on your 2 week Europe trip! It’s a great place to start. You can immerse yourself in a new culture without the stress of a language barrier for the first few days.

Fly into London: Getting to Europe is pretty easy. There are so many amazing flight deals year round. Keep an eye on flights until you find the best deals. It can be tricky traveling with teens because of their demanding school and activity schedules. It’s a good idea to find out if they can do any kind of independent study so that you can go to Europe during the offseason, which will be much less crowded, cheaper, and more enjoyable. To find the best flights, check out my guide to finding cheap flights here where I discuss all the tricks and tools I use to find killer deals, especially to Europe! I’m taking my almost teen 12-year-old to London this spring and I found tickets for $300 Round Trip.

-What to do in London-

Spend time in this incredible city full of history and culture for three days. You could honestly spend weeks, months, and even years in this city and still not see everything. With only three days in London, I recommend using my London Itinerary Guide and selecting your 3 favorite days. I suggest following Day 1: London’s Main Sites, Day 4: Ancient History, and Day 6: Harry Potter (if you’re into that, and why wouldn’t you be?!).

You can use this interactive map of my favorite London itinerary to help you plan this part of your Europe trip to London:

If you’re taking kids on this Europe trip, be sure to read my awesome list of things to do in London with kids. And if you’re looking for an itinerary that’s a little bit different and you’re a Paddington Bear fan, be sure to read Paddington’s Guide to London…it’s adorable!

Book Your Stay in London

resources

Perfect London Itinerary
London with Kids
Paddington’s Guide to London
Christmas in London

Europe Trip Itinerary for 2 WeeksEurope Trip Itinerary for 2 Weeks

Second Stop Day 4-6: Paris

-How to Get from London to Paris-

The best way to get from London to Paris is to take the Eurostar. Taking the Eurostar from London to Paris is the easiest and quickest way to get from city to city. I love that this train, that goes under the English Channel takes you from one city center to another. Flying is fine, but getting between the airports and the cities can be a huge pain. Even if the Eurostar costs a little bit more, be sure to add the cost of trains or taxis from the airport into your flight costs. You can book your Eurostar tickets through ACP Rail International. I use them all the time and they are trustworthy.

Book Eurostar Tickets Here

-What to do in Paris-

Your next three days will be spent in the city of Light! With so many things to do in Paris, narrowing down where to go and what to do can be challenging. I’ve narrowed down my favorite sites and activities that you can easily see in three days. I recommend, of course, going up the Eiffel Tower, and also seeing it sparkle at night, dining on some delicious French food, visiting all the parks you can, climbing up to Montmartre, visiting Notre Dame, and as many museums as you can fit in.

For a more extensive guide to Paris, follow my Paris Walking Guide. And if you’re visiting Paris with kids, be sure to read my Family Guide to Paris. Be sure to eat all the good food you can by following my Paris Food Guide. This is my favorite hotel in Paris.

Here is an interactive map of Paris

If you don’t want to spend all three days in Paris and are feeling like getting away from the big city, rent a car and take one of these amazing day trips from Paris. 

Book Your Stay in Paris

resources

Paris Itinerary
Paris with Kids
Paris Food Guide
Day Trips From Paris

Europe Trip Itinerary for 2 WeeksEurope Trip Itinerary for 2 Weeks

Third Stop Day 7-10: Rome

-How to Get from Paris to Rome-

My favorite way to get from Paris to Rome is to take the overnight train. It’s about a 14-hour train ride with a quick train change in Milan. If you wanted to spend more time in Milan or even a day in Lake Como (one of my favorite places in the world), you could take the overnight and take the train to Rome the following day.

Book Train Tickets Here

-What to do in Rome-

Rome is such a beauty! Another city that deserves more than a few days, but you can definitely make your time here count. You can read my guide to One Day in Rome or my Family Guide to Rome. I highly suggest doing a Vespa Tour and a Food Tour in while you’re in Rome. Airbnb and TripAdvisor have some great tours. Be sure to see the Colosseum, Pantheon, and eat all the gelato, pasta, and pizza you can!

Book Your Stay in Rome

resources

Rome in One Day
Rome with Kids
How to Survive Train Travel in Italy
Best Places to Visit in Italy

Europe Trip Itinerary for 2 WeeksEurope Trip Itinerary for 2 Weeks

Fourth Stop Day 11-14: Greece

-How to Get from Rome to Greece-

Spend the last few days of your Europe trip relaxing on the beach in Greece. My all-time favorite island in Greece is Kefalonia.  It’s got everything to offer for your first taste of Greece. Kefalonia is an easy flight from Rome and an easy flight back to London if you’re flying home through there. Ryanair offers amazing deals within Europe and flies to Kefalonia regularly.

-What to do in Kefalonia-

Kefalonia, Greece has so much to offer including friendly locals, inexpensive lodging, stunning scenery, incredible history, beautiful beaches, fabulous weather, and tasty food. Kefalonia is easily drivable, and I suggest you visit the whole island, taking in all of the sites and trying all the local food you can. There are plenty of great lodging options on the island from resorts to Airbnbs. Read my Guide to Kefalonia, Greece to learn all about this amazing island.

resources

What to do in Kefalonia, Greece
How to Fly for Cheap or Nearly Free

I hope you have an amazing time on this two week itinerary of Europe! If you have any questions, suggestions, or just a story to share, please get in touch on Facebook or Instagram.

Travel for Teens Europe Trip ItineraryTravel for Teens Europe Trip ItineraryPin Me!

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Some Useful Tips While Hiking in Sapa

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Located in the Northwest of Vietnam, Sa Pa is a quiet and peaceful town. But it has a strong attraction to any visitors thanks to the magic of nature, the cool climate, and the fresh air. Hiking in Sapa is a good option that is favorited by many travelers as it helps them understand and have great experiences in this beautiful land. If you are also planning to get a Sapa hiking trip in the near future, keep in mind some of the helpful tips below.

1. Stay at a guest house

In Sapa town and the surrounding area, there are hundreds of accommodations, from homestay with a cheap price to luxury resorts, hotels. So, you may be confused when choosing where to stay. Nowadays, many tourists get the good option like homestay while hiking in Sapa. As it is not only cheaper but also closer to the local living of this mountainous area. You will not only have a place to stay but also have the opportunity to experience the life of the ethnic group in Sapa, their activities,  traditions, and cuisine.

sapa homestay

 

The hosts of homestays are locals people so they are very kind and generous. You can join the daily works, taste some specialties, drink their wine… Living as a true village in this mountainous land will be an unforgettable memory for you.

The hosts can also give you some advice to explore Sapa. In addition, the homestays are often located very close to the favorite sites while hiking in Sapa such as Ta Phin Village, Muong Hoa Valley, Y Linh Ho Village… So it’s very convenient for you to move. In summary, a local homestay would be a great option for your trip.

2. Find a local guide

If you hiking in Sapa by yourself, you may face many difficulties or lost much time on search, asking for directions. In order to save time and energy, it’s much better to hire a local guide who knows well the terrain, weather and tourist destinations in Sapa. As a result, your trip will be safer and you will have more enjoyable to explore the local life.

Sapa Trekking 2 Days Tour (4)

 

You can find a guide through a hotel in Sapa or the main tourism office found in town. The guides are mostly local and they can communicate fluently in English. So there’s no reason to not hire one. They will help you much in the journey of hiking in Sapa.

3. Carrying reasonable baggage

Before hiking in Sapa, you should find the necessary information for your trip such as must-come destination, the weather forecast, the suitable clothes.  Remember only bring what is absolutely necessary to you. And you will have to carry them by yourself when trekking. At first, luggage may be lightweight, but after a time,  when you have become tired, they will become heavier and it’s harder to carry. Some items needed are:

Sapa Trekking 2 Days Tour (1)

Food: This is an important thing of your discovering journey in Sapa. You can lose energy after a long distance of hiking. So some fast and nutritious food can be useful for you such as bread, chicken egg, snack, orange juice, tangerine…
Medical supplies: Don’t forget to bring these indispensable items. You should prepare some wind oil, diarrhea medication, flu medication, medical alcohol, cotton, gauze, salon pass…
Climbing sticks: You may have to climb to Ham Rong Mountain or Fansipan Mountain. In that case, a climbing stick is very useful during your trip.
Camera: Sapa is beautiful with the ranges of mountains in the mist, the vast terraced fields, the peach blossom forest in the spring, the villages with special architecture… All will make you impress and want to keep them in the photos. That’s why you should bring a camera fully charged.

4. Hiking route recommended  in Sapa

Day 1: Hiking in 5-hour to Cat Cat – Y Linh Ho – Ta Van Village

Depend on tourist’s timing, they usually chose the different route for hiking in Sapa. But we recommend you to visit some highlight villages here such as Cat Cat, Y Linh Ho, Ta Van, Giang Ta Chai or Supan Village.

Firstly, from Sapa town, you can trek about 1 km to Cat Cat village.  Along the way, you can admire the beauty of nature such as the majestic waterfalls, the terraced fields, and the clear river… Located at the foot of Hoang Lien Son Mountain, Cat Cat Village is a place where the Black H’mong ethnic group lives for a long time. You can witness the daily life of local people, talk with them to understand more about their culture. After that, take a rest to prepare for the next trekking.

Sapa Trekking 2 Days Tour (6)

Leaving Cat Cat Village, we will continue the trip by hiking to Y Linh Ho, the village of another Black H’mong group, 7 km far from the center of Sapa. This place is favorited by the poetic of Muong Hoa Stream, the nice architecture of local people ‘s house and their friendliness. You will also have an opportunity to see their special dress that has the dark color in black and navy dyed with indigo. The daily activities of residents also attract the attention of tourists, especially foreigners. Y Linh Ho is one of the must-come destinations for whom love the adventurous hiking in Sapa.

Ta Van Village is the last destination on this hiking trip. Located 8 km from Sapa town, this is the village of the Zay communities. Trekking to this place can give some impressive experience for adventurous travelers because the pass path is quite creepy and steep. Visiting Ta Van will be unforgettable memories. You can discover the ethnic life,  unique custom, and long-standing culture. Moreover, there are many homestays here so you can choose to stay in this village to experience the local life. That will be very convenient and efficient for you to have relaxation after a long day of hiking in Sapa. In addition, you can find out more about the culture of ethnics people by taste their unique cuisine, visit local homes as well as schools.

Day 2: Hiking in 3 hours to Giang Ta Chai – Su Pan

The next morning, before continue exploring Sapa, you can enjoy a breakfast made by the local chef. Then we will go hiking to Giang Ta Chai.

After about a half hour trekking the trails, the beautiful rice fields, the pristine bamboo forests and cool waterfalls, you can see Giang Ta Chai, the village of Red Dao Group in Sapa. Located on top of the hill, from here, you can look down to see the beauty of Muong Hoa river. If you have much time, don’t’ ignore to visit Hau Thao village nearby, where you can see many Dao and H’mong women gather here for trading and exchanging handicrafts.

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Finally, we will trek to Su Pan Village, the last destination in your hiking in Sapa trip. As well as the Lao Chai and Ta Van Village, Su Pan is located in the middle of Muong Hoa Valley. But it can be referred to as a mountainous commune. About 17km from Sapa town, this village retains more primitive features than any other village in Sapa. That’s the reason why many adventure lovers especially like it. They can see a much rudimentary house built on the rocky land in which the locals grow corn and cassava as their main food, or the people work on their rice terraced fields. This will be an unforgettable experience

Whenever you go hiking in Sapa, you can catch the stunning scenery, the friendly smile of people here, the different cultures. Let’s come here to discover and feel it!

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