Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

Ten Must See Sights in Washington, DC!

If you happen to be in Washington, DC whether it is for business or pleasure, do not leave the place until you’ve visited these ten must see sights.

Must See In D.C.

1.) The White House

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - The White House

The most obvious attraction of Washington, DC is the White House. Home to the most powerful man in the world, the White House attracts millions of tourists per year. Most tourists are content just to see the White House beyond its gates. However, you can schedule to have a walking tour of the White House’s East Wing by contacting your Member of Congress.

2.) The International Spy Museum

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - The International Spy Museum

The US-Russian Cold War is one major event in US history, which is given emphasis in this museum. Revisit the past covert activities between the US and Russia by visiting this museum.

3.) The Capitol

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - US Capitol

Another architectural feat that you should visit in this district is the Capitol building which houses both the Senate and the House of Representatives. Visiting the Capitol is free, but there are limited tickets given away on a daily basis. Be sure to get in line early to avail of one.

4.) Arlington National Cemetery

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - Arlington National Cemetery

Give respect to the hundreds of thousands of American soldiers that sacrificed for freedom by visiting the Arlington National Cemetery. Take a gander at JFK’s eternal flame and experience the tranquility of the place, especially in early morning visits.

5.) Monuments by Moonlight Tour

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - Monuments by Moonlight Tour

Although you can see them during the daytime, you should experience a three-hour walking tour of the monuments under the moonlight. You will notice that the illumination of the monuments during the night gives them a more revered look.

6.) The Smithsonian Institute

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - The Smithsonian Institute

If museums are your thing, then visiting the Smithsonian Institute cluster of museums is a must do. However, you must choose which museums to visit since you cannot visit all of them in just one day.

7.) Old Town Trolley Tour

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - Old Town Trolley Tour

Experience Washington, DC by riding on the old town trolley which will pass more than a hundred points of interest. You can take your time visiting each point since your ticket will allow you a day of getting on and off the trolley.

8.) US National Zoological Park and US Botanic Gardens

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - US National Zoological Park and US Botanic Gardens

If you are fond of nature, then these two parks are two places that you must visit.

9.) Georgetown

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - Georgetown

Head over to Georgetown for some great shopping and dining experiences while walking on century old cobblestone streets.

10.) The US Supreme Court

Ten Must See Sights in Washington DC - The US Supreme Court

See in action the lawyers and the judges on America’s highest court. Or you may just marvel at the Greek classical structure that they are housed in.

Make the most of your Washington DC trip by exploring these 10 places

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - London

Often referred to as Great Britain (GB) or simply Britain, this Island Country to the north-west of European Mainland has been such a marketable tourist destination for decades. Such immense appeal is largely attributed to the amazingly stupendous topographic settings as well as its rich cultural diversity and heritage that traverses several millennia.

Consisting of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, this world-renown superpower is fascinatingly only as big as the state of Texas, if not smaller. This is however a plus to your vacation pleasures as you can easily explore the whole country from one coast to the next simply by train or a bus.

10.) Loch Ness

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Lockness

Home to the mythical Loch Ness monsters, the Spectacular Loch Ness has been a popular tourist attraction for centuries. The picturesque scenery presented beyond you is a sight to behold. You get the chance to view the Urquhart Castle from the 14th Century as well as the Loch Ness Exhibition Centre with its whole history recounted.

9.) Cardiff: Welsh Capital

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Cardiff

From the spectacular historic Castles to the magnificently indicative sceneries, Cardiff city in Wales is absolutely inspiring. Visit the Cardiff Castle, an immense historic masterpiece that has stood the test of time since the 11th Century. Shop in the various Victorian Shopping arcades including The Hayes and Cardiff bay. Also treat yourself to the sundry of Welsh delicacies as you enjoy the galleries and theater experiences on the vibrant Mermaid Quay.

8.) Canterbury

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Canterbury

Standing just an hour’s train ride from London, this historic cathedral City listed as UNESCO world heritage site lies along the River Stour and has been a tourist attraction Centre for over 1500 years. The major attraction here is the centuries-old Canterbury, home to the Archbishop of Canterbury, which is a manifestation of baroque architecture of the Britons of the early days. These alongside the Canterbury Tales and the outstanding Canterbury Roman Museum will entice any tourist to this small historical City.

7.) Liverpool and Manchester

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Manchester

The two cities to the North of England and bordering Scotland and Wales are homes to even more diverse cultural heritage. The highlights here include the Manchester cathedral, the Museum of Science and Industry, Manchester art gallery and Chinatown. Down at Liverpool, the Beatles Story in the Albert Docks area, Merseyside Maritime Museum and Walker art gallery.

6.) The University Towns of Cambridge and Oxford

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Cambridge

No one can resist the chance to visit two of the world’s most famous Universities, better still when the chance presents itself in one single hop-on hop-off bus ride and the monumental institutions are a paltry 128 kilometers apart.

5.) Medieval York and its Minster

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - York

Also in northern England, the Medieval York boasts one of the most marvelous Gothic cathedral designs, an architectural masterpiece, in all of England stretching way back to the 3rd century. Complimented with the impressionistic interior artistry, this is definitely worth your viewing time.

4.) The Cotswold and the Lake District

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Lake District

These could be described as the Idyllic pasturelands of England and are a portrayal of anything English that is pleasant and peaceful. Located just next to the popular Bath and Bristol, these overwhelmingly photographed regions of the UK include Gloucestershire and Warwickshire counties.

3.) Historic Windsor and the Stonehenge

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Stonehenge

Enriched with Thames-side settings and cobblestone lane-ways, Windsor is home to the Windsor Castle which has served as summertime home to the royal British family for a millennium. Also head down to the planet’s oldest pilgrimage that has stood for over 4500 years – The Stonehenge. This world heritage site was erected initially as a worship place but has since hosted traffics of tourists wishing to witness the display of Man’s ingenuity.

2.) Edinburgh

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - Edinburgh

Scotland’s capital is one of the most attractive cities in Britain. Highlighted by Edinburgh Castle – a gothic historical royal fortress rested above the old city – which has played host to numerous sight-seers since the 13th century, Edinburgh will sure to capture your essence with incomparably rich variety of picturesque attractions.

1.) London – UK’s Ultimate destination

Top 10 Places To Visit In The UK - London

The English capital and the home to the Queen is easily the ultimate destination for anyone planning to visit the UK. Throbbing with life and vibrant at worst, the metropolis offers a rich variety of mystic sights that have stood the test of time and are paranormal at best. Starting from the Tower of London located next to the River Thames, you move down to the royal Buckingham palace – host to the Royal family since Queen Victoria – where you enjoy the pomp of the Changing of Guard. Westminster Abbey down the Whitehall road is another must see cryptic edifice. Your excursion is not complete if you don’t visit the wide range of museums handy in the capital.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

Top 10 Places To Visit In The USA

My wife and I have a dream that when we retire or win the lottery we will buy a van and travel around the United States. We’re not interested in going aboard because there is so much to see right here in the United States. Listed below are the top 10 places to visit in the USA.

10.) Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville, North Carolina

Using a mixture of cosmopolitan flair and Southern charm Asheville is beaming with restaurants with boutiques and street musicians. In July of each year there is a street festival called the Bele Chere where people flood the downtown area. They enjoy a children’s play area, music, food and enjoy the art. Of course Asheville is known for the 8,000 acre and 250 room of the Biltmore House where you can take a public tour. Thomas Wolfe Memorial is here because this is where the author grew up.

9.) Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado

Here you can find the 23 acre Botanic Garden and the zoo. You can visit the Museum of Nature and Science and the Denver Art Museum. There are more than 500 shops and restaurants to see as you walk down the mile long 16th street mall. To make sure you get plenty of exercise you can bike along 850 miles of paved trails that can connect with a network of larger dirt trails. You can pick up a bike at one station and leave it at another when you sign up for the city’s bike sharing program.

8.) Southern Utah

Southern Utah

Where the natural playground of Southern Utah where lies the North rim of the Grand Canyon along with Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park, Lake Powell. There are also five state parks here in Kane County where the wonders are in abundance. You can go playing golf, camping, four wheeling, hiking and view rock formations and red rocks that are mind boggling. You can visit old movie sets in Frontier Movie Town where a lot of the old Western movies were made.

7.) California Coast

California Coast

Oh the adventures in the wine country are unforgettable. You can tour the wineries and drive the Pacific Coast Highway. Then you can visit the Hearst Castle and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. You have the option of scuba diving in Monterey Bay or to explore the Big Sur coast near Carmel. The downtown shops and restaurants of San Luis Obispo will keep you busy and you can shop till you drop or you can take a 90 drive north to Los Angeles if you prefer bigger shopping trips.

6.) Alaska

Alaska

Denali National Park showcases some of the wild terrain of the United States. This is the home of Mt. McKinley which stands 20,000 foot tall. You can take a bus trip along the Denali Park Road which is the park’s only road and is 92 miles long. Included in the bus ride will be more of a chance to see the animals, since the animals are more used to the noises of the bus and are less likely to run away and the noises from the hikers scare them away.

5.) New Orleans

New Orleans

New Orleans is famous for the Mardi Gras and fabulous French Quarter. With strong diverse cultural roots it is home to a world famous music scene. After the devastation of Hurricane Katrina New Orleans had to be rebuilt and when they rebuilt they made a new program which is called voluntourism. This is where the people that visit their city help with the rebuilding of New Orleans. If you want to be involved in this you can be but you don’t have to, you can just come to relax, have fun and party. Go to Audubon Park where there are lakes and nature trails or visit the historic mansions and ride the famous streetcars.

4.) Montana

Montana

Having more than 700 miles of trails and more than 1 million acres of meadows, lakes, and forests, the Glacier National Park in the Rocky Mountains is more than a fun filled day. You will be sharing the park with the 70 mammal species that call it home such as the grizzly bear and the grey wolf. There are more than 270 bird species like the harlequin ducks and the golden eagle. Millions of years ago the glaciers were responsible for making the park’s terrain. If you don’t have time to do the hike through the park then you can take the 50 mile Going-To-The-Sun Road and this will let you get a great view of the park. In the winter sometimes the park has to close because of the snowy conditions so you might want to check with the park before you make the trip.

3.) Hawaii

Hawaii

When you go to Hawaii you can pick an island you want to go to or you can island hop and see all six. They are the Big Island, Lanai, Molokai, Kauai, Maui, and Oahu. In Oahu there lies Honolulu which is their state capital. Of course there are different things to see and do on each island that is why it would be so important to see each one. On Maui you can take a drive and take in the sunrise or sunset, depending on the time of day, by driving up the 10,000 foot Haleakala Volcano. On Kauai you can go on serious hiking trips on the rugged Na Pali Coast. Then on Big Island you can visit the Volcanoes National Park and as you visit Papohaku Beach on Molokai you will see why the 3 mile beach is ranked as one of longest beaches in the state of Hawaii.

2.) Sedona/Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon

When you drive about a two hour trip from Phoenix you can witness the red rocks that come up out of the desert. People come here for all kinds of reasons, some just to see the majestic Grand Canyon but some also come to commune with nature and meditate and many use it as a meditation of healing. You have your options on how to see the Grand Canyon. Some hike down it on mule, some hike or some raft the canyon and then you can always just look down into it. The canyon has a depth of 6,000 feet into the ground but on the average is about 4,000 feet deep and is 277 miles long.

1.) New York City

New York City

This city is called the city that never sleeps and it is because there is always so much to do there. You can see the Statute of Liberty or you can go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art or take in a Broadway show. Even the nature lovers will enjoy Central park with its 25 acres and all the fun things you can do in a park. Also, make sure you stop by the Carnegie Deli for a big roast beef sandwich like nobody else can make.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

10 Simple Tips To Help You Avoid Getting Sick When You Travel

I get a lot of questions about health care on the road – “How can I avoid getting sick? What need vaccines? What happens when I do get sick?” Since I’m not a doctor, I don’t like giving medical advice so I’ve asked Mike Huxley, a registered nurse and author of the blog Bemused Backpacker to write a few articles on health and safety when you travel. His first article focused on creating the perfect first aid kit. This article features easy ways to stay healthy on the road.

Getting sick is a part of everyday life, and being on the road doesn’t exempt you from that fact, especially when travel itself it exposes you to a whole new range of bugs, parasites, and environments. The fact of the matter is the longer you are traveling, the more likely you are to pick up a bug or two.

The key to minimizing the chances of this, however, is to actively combat the risk factors of becoming sick in the first place. The last thing you want to do is to expose yourself to any more risk than you have to. Prevention is far better than any cure.

Wash your hands

Outdoor sinks used to ask your hands and prevent illness

I know this sounds basic, but it is surprising how many people forget it, and as a nurse, the simple act of washing your hands has been drilled into me since day one of basic training as a key component in infection control. The National Health Service (NHS) in the UK has had a huge impact on controlling infection in a clinical setting simply by reinforcing the importance of washing your hands, but the same is true for every aspect of day-to-day life, and traveling the world is no exception.

Hand hygiene is essential to stop the spread of infection and can dramatically reduce your chances of diarrhea, vomiting, food poisoning, gastroenteritis, flu, norovirus, MRSA, or even hepatitis A.

Many travelers carry small bottles of hand gel, and these are great as a backup, but they aren’t a replacement for good old soap and water. Wherever possible, wash your hands under hot water for at least thirty seconds before and after eating and always after going to the toilet.

Drink bottled water

When you can’t be sure of the purity of the local water or you are traveling in areas where sanitation is not that great, then it should go without saying that you should avoid the local tap water. Even if locals drink it without any problems, your stomach may not have the right bacteria to protect you from becoming ill, avoid local water — even ice in your drinks — in countries that don’t purify their tap water.

I recommend that at the very least you should always drink bottled water and double-check that the seal is intact on the bottle top too (a common scam is to sell bottles refilled with tap water). It is also a good idea to use bottled water to brush your teeth. But personally I prefer to use a water bottle with a built-in filter as this reduces the need to buy bottles of water constantly, saving both money and the environment.

Be careful of food contamination

Food contamination is one of the biggest causes of traveler’s diarrhea and gastrointestinal problems on any travel adventure. If you are not careful with your food on your travels, you could potentially be exposing yourself to diarrhea, E. coli, Shigella, Salmonella, Giardia, Entamoeba hystolytica, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidia, Cyclospora, cholera, and much more nastiness.

You should always ensure — as much as is practicably possible — that any food you eat is fresh, cooked thoroughly, and served piping hot.

I love street food for this very reason, as you can see how clean the cooking environment is, and the food is often prepared right in front of you. But look out for signs of good hygiene practice at any street food stall or food court you eat at. Does the person handling the food wear disposable gloves and change them frequently? Is there a separate person handling the money or, at the very least, does the person cooking the food remove and replace gloves every time they handle cash? Is hand washing a regular occurrence? Is raw food left out in the open or is it stored correctly? These things may seem inconsequential but they are important.

You may want to avoid — or be very careful of — the following:

  • Salads that may have been prepared in local untreated water
  • Raw fruit and vegetables that you haven’t peeled or skinned yourself (if you have, they are generally fine)
  • Food that has been left out and exposed for a period of time
  • Food that is shared, such as in buffets undercooked, raw, or reheated food, especially meat, fish, or rice.

You probably aren’t going to avoid a bit of stomach upset completely on your travels — especially if you are traveling long term — but if you are aware of good food hygiene practices and follow them as much as possible, then you can at the very least minimize the risk of becoming ill.

Don’t be afraid of having familiar food

Eating local food and delving into the local cuisine is one of the absolute true pleasures of traveling and one you should never miss out on, but that said, a degree of common sense is needed too. Jumping straight into a diet of spicy curries or predominantly red meat is a good way to ensure some form of gastrointestinal upset if your stomach isn’t used to it.

Food intolerances happen when your gut can’t properly digest the food you’ve eaten, or you’ve introduced something completely new and different to it, which can irritate the digestive tract and lead to stomach pain, cramps, gas, diarrhea, vomiting, and heartburn. Don’t worry — this generally isn’t serious and will pass relatively quickly. The trick to trying new foods and new cuisine is to mix it up a little bit.

If you have a sensitive stomach, take it easy at first and don’t be afraid of eating familiar food from time to time.

Try and stay active

One of the best ways to stay fit and healthy and fight off unwanted infections is exercise. The benefits of exercise are well known and well documented: it improves your overall health and well-being and strengthens your immune system, which makes you less susceptible to illness. And if you do get sick, your body is better able to fight off the infection and more quickly get you back on your feet. It isn’t foolproof, of course, because fit people still get sick, but in general the fitter you are, the better your body will be at shrugging off that annoying bug or illness. I always try and maintain a healthy lifestyle, and that doesn’t change because I am traveling.

If you aren’t active or fit before you start traveling, use it as an excuse to start! Go on a jungle trek, go hiking into the countryside or up a mountain, swim in the sea, go for a jog — whatever tickles your fancy as long as it gets you a little out of breath.

Protect yourself against the sun

Sunburn can seriously ruin a good travel experience! I got very badly sunburned years ago in Thailand after snorkeling for too long and forgetting to reapply sun cream. It is not an experience I want to repeat!

Current recommendations on sun protection say you should use a minimum of factor 15, though I recommend at least SPF 30.

Protecting yourself from the sun goes beyond getting bad sunburn though. You should also stay well hydrated if you are traveling in a country or region with a hot or tropical climate, as well as cover up with loose clothing and even a hat or scarf. If you don’t, then dehydration can set in very quickly, and that can lead to more serious conditions such as exposure, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke, which if left unattended can become a medical emergency.

I once cut a day’s sightseeing short in Egypt when I spotted the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion developing in another traveler and had to help her to get rehydrated and cooled down. It happens a lot more easily than many people think so be sensible, use sunscreen, cover up, and stay hydrated.

Get vaccinated

Vaccinations are probably one of the most common travel health concerns that people ask my advice on in my capacity as a qualified nurse. There is no one-size-fits-all answer to those questions, however, due to the unique nature of individual circumstances, but there is one universal constant: If you can protect yourself, it is a good idea to do so.

Prevention is always better than the cure, and nothing is better at protecting you from the risk of getting a disease than being vaccinated against it.

Not all vaccinations are required for every individual for every trip, and a lot depends on what vaccinations you have already, what country or region you are visiting, and individual factors, such as your personal medical history, how long you will be traveling, and what you will be doing. This is why it is essential that you get one-on-one personal advice from your local travel clinic, nurse specialist, or physician before you travel.

To give you a basic understanding of the types of vaccinations you will need, however, they are often broken up into three distinct categories:

  • Routine vaccinations are the ones that everyone gets throughout their childhood and early adult life; specific schedules (and sometimes the vaccine administration itself) do differ from country to country, but these generally include the BCG vaccine, the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, and vaccinations for diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTP); hepatitis B; hepatitis A (for at-risk groups); Haemophilus influenzae type b; rotavirus; measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR); and HPV (for young girls only, to prevent cervical precancers and cancers). It is important that you are fully up to date with all of your routine vaccinations, including boosters, if you plan to travel. If you aren’t, then a health professional’s office should be your first port of call, before even departing.
  • Recommended vaccinations include all the vaccines that aren’t included in the routine schedule of your own country and are specific to travel to any given destination. These can include vaccinations for hepatitis A (if you don’t have it already), rabies, Japanese encephalitis, cholera, and typhus, among others.
  • Required vaccinations refer to vaccinations for yellow fever, meningococcal disease, and polio. Many countries where yellow fever is present will require you to have proof of vaccination before you are allowed in, and if you are heading anywhere else after traveling to a country where these diseases are present, you will need to show proof of vaccination — known as an international certificate of vaccination or prophylaxis (ICVP) — before entry.

Protect yourself from mosquito bites

Mosquito bites are an absolute nightmare for any traveler. At best they will simply annoy you with painful and itchy welts, but at worst they can transmit a whole variety of diseases, such as yellow fever, dengue, Japanese encephalitis, and chikungunya, not to mention malaria.

Mosquitoes can be a problem in many parts of the world, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization, and the NHS’s Fit For Travel site are excellent places to find out where there are outbreaks of diseases such as dengue or malaria.

Even if you are in a low- to no-risk area, it is still a good idea to prevent mosquitoes from biting you in the first place, even if it is only to avoid the annoyance of painful bites. It should go without saying that the best thing you can do to protect yourself from being bitten is to use preventive measures:

  • Air-conditioned rooms are great for minimizing mosquito bites, as they are often better sealed and less likely to let them in.
  • Cover up. Wearing the right clothing is essential. Wear light, loose cotton clothing that covers most of your skin, especially around peak exposure times and places, for example, near bodies of water or at twilight or after dark, the peak time for malaria-carrying mosquitoes to feed.
  • Sleep under permethrin-coated nets where necessary.
  • Use anti-mosquito coils and plug-in devices where appropriate.
  • Always apply a good dose of 30–50% DEET spray, and reapply it regularly. Some people prefer more natural alternatives, but these are often not as effective or are often not clinically proven to be effective at all.

It is important to remember that none of these methods is completely foolproof. You can do everything right and still get bitten. I once caught dengue fever in India despite taking all the usual preventive measures, and it was one of the most unpleasant travel experiences of my life. It isn’t nicknamed “breakbone fever” for nothing! However, you can always minimize your risks with the tips above.

Take antimalarials when necessary

As a nurse I advise people on taking antimalarials all the time, and one of the biggest problems is the huge amount of misinformation and fear there is surrounding this issue.

Basically speaking, if the area you are heading to is considered a high risk for malaria then yes, antimalarials are usually strongly advised. If you are visiting an area that is a low to no risk, then antimalarials aren’t usually advised.

Antimalarials are medications, and like all medications they have side effects. There isn’t one type of antimalarial; there are a variety of prophylaxes available, each of which has a range of common and rare side effects.

The most important thing to remember, however, is that each antimalarial affects different people differently. Just because one person develops side effects, that doesn’t mean the next person will. In fact, the people who suffer from severe side effects are in the absolute minority. A lot of people will only suffer mild side effects, and most will have none at all.

Now, knowing when they are necessary and when they are not is a different matter, and a lot of different factors have to be taken into consideration. These factors include the following:

  • The level of risk in your destination
  • The time of year you are traveling
  • Whether there are any current outbreaks
  • How long you are staying in any high-risk areas
  • What you will be doing (spending extended time in rural areas or cities, spending time near bodies of water; other high-risk factors, etc.)
  • Your personal medical history
  • Past experience with antimalarials

Make an appointment with a travel health professional

Health care professional giving a shot to a traveler overseas
It is important that you discuss your plans with a health professional well before you head off on your ‘round-the-world adventure. Many travelers instead leave it until the last minute. Too many people contact me for an appointment at my travel clinic a week before they leave not realizing that vaccinations may need to be timed weeks apart!

The average recommended time to see a health professional is 6–8 weeks before you leave, but personally I would aim for a little earlier than that, especially if you will think you will need more than one vaccination or if you have specific health concerns. The worst that will happen is that you will get an appointment closer to your time of departure if it is determined that you don’t need that amount of time to get things sorted.

These very simple steps will dramatically reduce your risk of getting ill abroad, but they are often so simple that many people overlook them. Before you set off on your trip of a lifetime, take a moment to think about your health and prepare properly. That way you will be able to enjoy your trip with peace of mind.
Remember that these are general health tips only, and while they are written by a qualified nurse, they are no replacement for a consultation with your travel health nurse or physician, where individual health concerns can be discussed based on your personal history.

Michael Huxley is a registered nurse from the U.K. (who is especially interested in emergency nursing and travel medicine) and writes about his travels on his blog Bemused Backpacker. There he blogs about backpacking, sustainable travel, and health related issues. It’s an awesome blog! Michael is also an active moderator in our community forums.

Important Note: The information provided here is for general travel health advice and information only. It is provided by a qualified nurse, but it is not a replacement for a personal consultation with a travel nurse specialist, your GP, or a doctor specializing in travel medicine who can tailor advice to your individual medical history and needs.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

12 Tips For Air Travel With A Baby Or Toddler

Air Travel Tips

Air travel with an infant or toddler is difficult. However, advance preparation and following some simple tips can make air travel with your baby easier and more enjoyable. Remember, it is your family vacation and you do have control over many aspects of your baby travel experience.

Planning ahead and being prepared are the keys to successful air travel with an infant. Clearing security when you travel with an infant can be tricky.

How to Prepare for a Flight with a Baby

  • Booking Your Flight
  • Packing For Your Trip
  • Baby Supplies & Toys
  • Formula, Food & Beverage
  • Dressing To Travel
  • Car Seats, Infant Carriers & Strollers
  • At The Airport
  • In Flight
  • Renting A Car

Booking Your Flight

Research flight times to your destination on different carriers. When you fly with a baby you should consider flying at times that are not as busy so you can have more room to feed and take care of your baby.

Baby Travel Tips

Try flying at night. Traveling with your infant at night will give your baby the best opportunity to sleep on long flights and won’t break their sleep routine.

Are you trying to decide whether or not to purchase a ticket for your infant or toddler under the age of two? Sit in front of the TV with your baby on your knee for the same length of time as your flight and make your decision.

If you decide to purchase a ticket for your infant or toddler make sure to ask about child fares.

If you are using an airline with a frequent flyer program, enroll your child as well. Some airlines offer full points for child fares.

Check with your travel agent or airline for the availability of kids’ meals and reserve one for each leg of your flights.

If traveling with a partner on a long flight, you might want to consider booking seats away from each other. That way one can sleep while the other tends to the baby.

Contact the airlines to request special assistance for when you board and exit the airplane. Such assistance may not be available, but many airports do have motorized carts, wheelchairs or other forms of assistance. It never hurts to ask. Getting assistance might even be the difference between making your connecting flight or not. Sometimes special assistance passengers get rushed through check-in, boarding, immigration and customs.

Packing For Your Trip

Take a look at the baggage regulations for your airline. Air travel with a baby means lots of baby gear. Check the size, weight and number of bags your family will be allowed and the associated charges. On most airlines, if an infant travels in your lap, you are not allotted space for the baby’s luggage. Also, some airlines don’t allot a full baggage allowance to child fares. Your family vacation with a baby can be easier if you ship your baby supplies ahead with a company like Babies Travel Lite and rent your bigger gear at your destination.

Traveling with baby thru an airport definitely requires hands. Try using a backpack as your carry-on so you can have your hands free to tend to your baby. A backpack with wheels can give you the option of wheeling your gear when it’s more convenient.

A baby traveling with you means you will need more baby supplies at the airport and on the airplane. Make sure you don’t exceed your carry-on allowance.

Your diaper bag probably won’t make it through airport security. Before you leave for the airport go through your diaper bag and make sure you bag and the baby supplies inside meet the TSA requirements for carry-on items. There are special TSA rules and regulations when you travel with an infant.

Baby Supplies & Toys

When traveling with an infant or toddler, always be sure to bring enough diapers and food (don’t forget your toddler will need snacks) for the flight, scheduled layovers, and unexpected flight delays.

Air travel with a baby or toddler means you should be prepared for the unexpected. Don’t forget extra cloths and health care items like medicine and band aids.

Your baby will appreciate a blanket and anything else you normally use to keep them warm and comfortable. Taking a baby on a vacation that begins with an airplane ride can be upsetting, remember that familiar things can help make baby’s flight less traumatic.

If breastfeeding, you might want to bring a blanket large enough to cover the baby during feedings.

When flying with a toddler, buy a few new toys to peak their interest. Let them see the toys for the first time during the flight. Wrapping them can be fun, but the Transportations Safety Administration advises against traveling through the airport with wrapped presents.

Hide a couple of favorite toys a few weeks before your trip then pull them out on the airplane or at your destination for an added surprise.

Tips Baby Travel Tips

Here are a few toys that parents traveling with toddlers have found work well on airplanes.

  • Favorite teddy bear or soft toy
  • Crayons and coloring books
  • Storybooks
  • Stickers
  • Small plastic toys such as cars, dolls or animals
  • Etch A Sketch or travel Magna Doodle

Formula, Food & Beverage

If your baby prefers warm bottles of formula, carry an empty thermos thru security and get boiling water from a coffee shop or restaurant at the airport. Adding a splash to the bottle will warm it up and be a comfort to your travelling infant. ALWAYS test the temperature of a bottle before feeding it to a baby.

Airline water may not be as pure as you or your baby may like (it is documented). Pack a bottle of juice in your carry-on or purchase water after you clear security so you have it available on the flight for drinking or making formula.

Long waits while traveling are common. Food and beverages are not always available. When you travel with your baby make sure you have a bottle or sippy cup, beverages and enough food and snacks.

If you have a child that can chew gum or soft candy, both are great for relieving pressure in the inner ear during take off and landing .

Dressing To Travel

Remember, it’s more important to be comfortable than fashionable when traveling with your baby.

You should dress in layers in case your traveling infant spits up or causes a spill.

Sometimes airlines seat all families with children at the rear of the airplane where it happens to be hot. Dress your children in layers so you can better control their environment

Whenever you travel with baby there is a risk of spit up, spills or diaper mishaps, be sure to bring along extra clothes and even some scented diaper disposal bags to carry soiled clothes and mask the smell.

Car Seats, Infant Carriers & Strollers

If you are traveling with an infant who does not have a separate seat, bring your infant carrier and check it at the gate, not the ticket counter. Having use of the carrier in airports will make traveling easier for you and your baby.

Bring your stroller and check it at the gate, not the ticket counter. Most airports require long walks to other gates, baggage claim and exits the stroller will make getting around much easier. Also, by checking it at the gate you can have use of your stroller during any layovers.

Children traveling in their own seat on the airplane may use an FAA approved child safety seat. Consider bringing your child’s car seat. Having your baby or toddler travel in their own car seat can make traveling more pleasant for everyone. This also applies to infant carriers.

CARES makes a specially approved harness for baby air travel. Look into whether a CARES harness is a good choice for you when you travel with your baby.

If you are bringing your infant carrier or car seat on the airplane, make sure you are familiar with how to use a lap type of seat belt to secure it to the airplane seat. All seats brought on to the airplane must be secure before takeoff. Trying figuring out how to secure it, in tight quarters, while taking care of your child, is something you definitely want to avoid.

At The Airport

Allow plenty of time at the airport. Remember how much extra time it takes when you take your baby anywhere and apply that to your airport plans.

Most airlines don’t pre-board families with small children anymore. If your airline doesn’t, ask the desk clerk at the gate for assistance placing your car seat in your seat on the airplane before they start boarding. While you are at it, ask them to place anything else that is bulky in an overhead bin. You should also ask if you can gate check your stroller just before boarding instead of at the airplane door. This will leave your hands free to navigate your child to his seat.

When you are first on and last off the airplane you can usually get additional assistance from the flight crew.

Always change your baby immediately before you are ready to board. Changing a baby on an airplane is not easy and the fewer times you have to do it in flight the better.

Utilize the long walkways in the airport during layovers if you are travelling with a toddler. Supervise your child as they burn off some energy exploring the airport while you wait for your flight.

In Flight

Many babies and children experience pressure in their ears during flights, especially during take off and landing. Encourage your child to suck and swallow by taking a drink. This should equalize the pressure. Chewing gum or a soft piece of candy works well for older kids. To ensure your baby will want to drink during takeoff try to avoid feeding immediately before your departure.

Airplane air conditioning can cause traveling babies and young children to become dehydrated so always carry a full sippy cup and encourage your child to drink often.

Baby Travel Tips

If you are a breastfeeding mother, be careful not to get dehydrated. Take a few sips on a regular basis to ensure this doesn’t happen.

Always test the temperature of airline food if feeding it to your baby. It is often too hot for them.

Some airplanes have a bathroom with a fold down changing table. If you are traveling with an infant ask the flight attendant if your airplane has one when you board.

Never turn down a drink for your child. Save unopened juice for later in the flight when the flight attendant may not be able or available to serve drinks.

Keep track of the time back home so you can keep your baby on their normal schedule while on vacation. Try to adjust feeding and sleeping times gradually. Babies don’t adjust feeding and sleep times easily, if at all making travelling with your baby a bigger challange.

Renting A Car

If you are renting a car, you might choose to rent a car seat too. Traveling with baby means so many bags, that if you are not using your car seat on the airplane you might want to avoid checking it and rent one.

If you are renting a car seat, make sure it is the correct size for your child’s height and weight.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

Top 10 Best Ski Resorts In The World

Some think that laying out on the beaches of the world is the way to go when vacationing. But others go a different route. When it comes to relaxation, some like to be surrounded in the cold air, with mountains around, and a fire blazing in the fireplace.

But that isn’t the end of it. Once they are done relaxing inside, they want to go outside and play in the snow. Many that enjoy being outside in the snow love to ski. And what better place to do so than at a ski resort.

We have compiled this list of the Top 10 best ski resorts in the world, as well as the reasons why they are the top 10 best ski resorts. Here they are and why:

 

10.) Aspen, Colorado

There are many that like to go here to ski because those that are famous (and famous always is followed by wealthy) ski here. Aspen has four mountains, and a lot of steeps. This makes for some ideal conditions to ski, no matter what level skier you are.

There are a lot of experts that like to go to the mountains that this resort lies on. The is because you are able to access a lot of acerage on the backside of the mountain terrain. But keep in mind, it is expensive here.

 

9.) Cortina, Italy

This ski resort will match up with any other one that is in the Alps. The city of Cortina was the host of the 1956 Olympics. There is no traffic in the streets here. The snow makes it one of the greatest places on earth to ski.

It was one of the first cities to have a ski resort, and it is considered one of the most stylish places that you can go in Italy. Again, make sure you grab your pocketbook. It is quite expensive.

 

8.) Mont-Tremblant, Quebec

This resort has been around since 1939, and is Eastern Canada’s most well known ski resort. It was the first ski resort that ever opened in Canada, and also is the second to have ever opened in North America.

Many people love to go here to ski because once they are done, they can pack up the skis and drive an hour away to the popular city of Montreal, Canada.

 

7.) Stowe, Vermont

This resort is looked at as one of the most picturesque and renowned resorts that you can ski at. It gives a sort of “New England like charm” and has a drop that is considered the biggest the area has.

There are two areas here that you can ski – Spruce Peak, and also Mount Mansfield. Spruce Peak puts its back to the terrain of Sumgglers’ Notch. Because of this, Stowe has a lift link that connects it to another resort.

There are more than sixty restaurants and ninety shops at the resort, and this makes the visitors stay close to the resort while they are visiting there.

 

6.) France’s Chamonix Mont Blanc

This was where the first Winter Olympics took place back in 1924. It has always been ranked as one of the most famous ski resorts of the world. It is on the foot of the famous mountain “Mont-Blanc,” and this mountain has one of the highest peaks of the Alp mountains.

The elevation there is 15,771 feet, and so the snow that comes down from there is great. There is a famous 9209 foot run for skiers. This is a total of 13.7 miles of straight skiing. A skier’s paradise.

 

5.) Banff Lake Louise, Alberta

Another resort in Canada, it has made several top 10 best ski resorts lists. It is one of the top scenic resorts in the mountains of North America.

There are three different areas that you can ski. Lake Louise, Sunshine Village, And Mount Norquay. These mountains are about 31 miles apart.

Norquay has been labelled by the Insider’s Guide, which is a magazine that selects Canada’s best skiing spots, as a brute legendary that is unforgiving because of its monter verticals and moguls. It is considered a “must stay.”

 

4.) Vail, Colorado

This is America’s favorite resort according to the Legendary Vail market. It is ranked as one of the top five resorts around the world. It is the largest ski resort in the US and has about 5300 acres of terrain to ski on.

One thing that makes this the skiers paradise is because it has some of the fastest detachable high speed quads that you can find on a single mountain. There are art galleries, ballooning, ice skating, museums, hockey, as well as more.

 

3.) Zermatt, Switzerland

This resort is well known for its five star hotels that are located around it. Zermatt is one of the top resorts in Switzerland. It has a car free area, and is very picturesque. It has the second largest vertical drop on earth for a lift served resort. Very popular.

 

2.) Kitzbuhel, Austria

The 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics were held here in Kitzbuhel, and is called the “Pearl Of All Of The Alps.” It is one of the most famous resorts in the world. At the heart of a village that is over 700 years old, it had skiers coming here as early as 1892.

 

1.) Whistler Backcomb, British Columbia

The mountains here are huge, and many come here because it is some of the best skiing in the world. It has one of the largest vertical drops in the United States. There is a village here that offer the visitor cafes, more than 100 restaurants, and many international stores.

Whistler has been voted by many as the best ski resort in North America, and has stayed that way for years.

So when it comes to the top 10 best ski resorts in the world, this list has them. Check them out, and when you are ready to go skiing, make sure that you make your way to one of them.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

Top 10 Places To Visit In Dubai

Dubai is a city-state located in the United Arab Emirates. Dubai was the 7th most visited city in the world in 2019 and it is expected to accommodate even more in the upcoming years. It is great for tourism and famous for its culture and wealth. Let’s see the Top 10 places to Visit in Dubai. Let us know if you have some other interesting places to visit in Dubai.

10.) The Dubai Mall

The Dubai shopping mall is the world’s largest shopping mall based on total area. It is a part of the 20-billion-dollar Burj Khalifa complex, and includes 1,200 shops. In 2011, Dubai Mall became the world’s most-visited shopping and leisure destination, and attracted more than 54 million visitors. There is also an aquarium, which is the largest suspended aquarium in the world, and ice rink.

 

9.) Ski Dubai

Ski Dubai is an indoor Ski resort with 22,500 square meters of indoor ski area. It is a part of the Mall of the Emirates, one of the largest shopping malls in the world, located in Dubai. It was developed by Majid Al Futtaim, which also operates the Mall of the Emirates. In 2007 Ski Dubai was awarded the Thea Outstanding Achievement Award by the Themed Entertainment Association.

Ski Dubai is also home to a number of penguins who come out to play several times a day. Penguin encounters can be booked, allowing the public to interact directly with the penguins. Winter clothing, ski and snowboard equipment are included in the price of admission.

 

8.) Dubai Museum

Dubai Museum is the main museum in Dubai. It is located in the Al Fahidi Fort, built in 1787 and is the oldest existing building in Dubai. The museum was opened by the ruler of Dubai in 1971, with the aim of presenting the traditional way of life in the Emirate of Dubai.

It includes local antiquities as well as artifacts from African and Asian countries that traded with Dubai. It also includes several dioramas showing life in the emirate before the advent of oil. In addition to artifacts from recent discoveries as old as 3000 B.C.

In 2019, Dubai Museum welcomed 1,800 visitors daily, with a yearly total of 611,840. In March 2019, the Museum had 80,000 visitors. The most popular times are from August to April.

 

7.) The Palm Islands

The Palm Islands are an artificial archipelago in Dubai. It is built in the form of palm and well known all over the world. It offers an unbelievable coast line with gorgeous places for accommodation.

 

6.) Burj Al Arab

It is the fourth tallest hotel in the world and referred to as “the world’s only seven-Star hotel”. Its construction was started in 1994 and completed in 1999. Its shape is designed to mimic the sail of a ship. You must visit this once in your lifetime.

 

5.) The Dubai Fountain

The Dubai Fountain is a record-setting choreographed fountain system set on the 30-acre manmade Burj Khalifa Lake, at the center of the Downtown Dubai development in Dubai. It was designed by WET Designs, the same company responsible for the fountains at the Bellagio Hotel Lake in Las Vegas. Illuminated by 6,600 lights and 25 colored projectors, it is 275 m (902 ft) long and shoots water up to 500 feet into the air accompanied by a range of classical to contemporary Arabic and world music.  It was built at a cost of AED 800 million (USD 218 million).

 

4.) Dubai Beaches

Dubai has got very beautiful beaches in the world and they run along Jumeirah Road. There are many hotels and private clubs along the length of the beach but at the same time there are many public access places which include playgrounds, barbecue sites, food kiosks, and picnic areas for families.

 

3.) Desert Safari

Dubai Desert Safari is a must do tour in Dubai. If you are visiting Dubai for pleasure or business spare an evening for this Desert Safari to cheer you up. On the desert dune safari you will experience thrilling drive in the Arabian Desert’s sand dunes and enjoy a great BBQ Dinner over a live Belly dance in a desert camp just outside the modern city of Dubai.

 

2.) Wild Wadi Water Park

Located in Dubai and situated in front of the stunning Burj Al Arab, Wild Wadi offers 30 rides and attractions for all the family.  Wild Wadi has a heated/cooled wave pool, multiple water slides and two artificial surfing machines. It is one of the must visited place in Dubai.

 

1.) Burj Khalifa

The #1 spot belongs to Burj Khalifa. Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. Its construction was started in 2004 and it was opened to the public in 2010. You can enjoy the stunning visuals from top of this building. Burj Khalifa alone is worthy enough for travel to Dubai. Make sure to visit it sometime.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

5 Fun Things To Do In Miami With Your Kids

Miami is best known as the city of sun, beach and all night parties, a dream destination for any young traveler. But don’t worry if you are visiting Miami with the whole family, as you’ll be surprised how many fun things you can do in this beautiful city with your kids.

Miami offers plenty of kid-friendly and educational activities that will keep your children busy and entertained during your stay. Check websites listing hotels in Miami like this one to find the best accommodation option for your family, and take a look at this quick guide to discover the family friendly side of Miami.

1.) Miami Metro Zoo

The Miami Metro Zoo is one of the best zoos in Florida. This zoo houses more than 700 wild animals from all over the world. There are no cages, only moats to separate groups of animals from the same geographic territories, that are actually recreated at the park.

Visitors can walk around the zoo seeing rare Bengal tigers, feed Samburu giraffes or take the Monorail to visit the park and learn about the different animals.

2.) Miami Children’s Museum

The Miami Children’s Museum, also known as MichiMu, is a non-profit educational institution on Watson Island. The museum features permanent and travelling exhibits, as well as programs and classes in English and Spanish to help kids explore their imagination by learning arts, culture, and more about their community.

The permanent exhibits include Pet Central, Meet Miami, Television Studio and Castle of Dreams, as well as 14 galleries, a parent and teacher resource center and an auditorium.

3.) Parrot Jungle Island

Parrot Jungle Island is an interactive zoological park in Watson Island, where visitors can get the opportunity to learn about tropical birds and their natural habitats, which are recreated on the site.

The zoo houses ligers, llamas, tigers, kangaroos, different species of reptiles, orangutans, monkeys, and condors, as well as a variety of fish and plants. You can also take part in shows hosted in the park every day, such as the Winged Wonders with some of the most beautiful and playful birds of the world, or the Dr. Wasabi’s Wild Adventures that will take the audience on a wild safari ride through the animal kingdom.

4.) Miami Museum of Science

While visiting the Museum of Science in Miami, you and your kids can learn about history, ecology and science through an interactive and educational experience. The museum hosts a planetarium that features daily shows, and an observatory that operates daily from 8pm to 10pm.

In the museum you will also find a wildlife center that houses snakes, turtles, and other reptiles as well as birds of prey. Do not miss the current exhibits that teaches kids about hurricanes, climate change, underwater secrets, and other exciting things.

5.) Miami Seaquarium

Who doesn’t know and love Flipper, the dolphin? The Miami Seaquarium is the right place to bring your kids to see fun-loving dolphins and other marine species, such as killer whales, sea turtles, manatees, and other marine reptiles and fish.

The oceanarium is located in Biscayne Bay, in downtown Miami, and it also hosts shows with trained dolphins and famous killer whale, Lolita. Your kids will definitely love it!

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

10 Tips For Taking Children On A Safari Trip

Isn’t a Safari trip just the perfect idea of a vacation with your family and kids? This is a chance of a lifetime adventure where you can watch wild animals in their natural habitat and teach your children about the wild. Moreover, safaris are an incredibly family friendly experience, and both parents and children can enjoy each other’s company and learn a lot together as they spy on the lions, elephants, and zebras in the great wild plains. The safari is perhaps the best classroom in the world for the kids and it’s all about sharing an adventure and spending quality time together.

Before booking a Safari vacation with your children, make sure to read the following tips before finalizing things.

1. Let The Anticipation Begin

Before starting the trip, make sure to get your kids interested in wildlife and let them know what lies in store ahead. Talk to them about the wildlife and watch some wildlife films together. Get them totally excited for the family adventure, and build that anticipation – which is a massive part of the magic of safari!

2. Look For A Kid-Friendly Destination

If going on a safari with children for the first time, make sure they have a good start. To do this, it’s essential to research a bit first and look for child-friendly destinations that not only offer a very good time for wildlife watching, but also provide child-friendly lodges that cater specifically to children. They (the lodge) should keep them busy and entertained when they’re not busy watching the wildlife. Make sure the lodges have facilities for babysitting, play rooms, and other family-oriented amenities.

3. Ask About The Age Restrictions

There are strict minimum age requirements at most lodges. Because of this, it is absolutely essential to learn about those requirements and make sure your children are able to take part in the game You can ask for a private safari vehicle if the children are under 12, but it can really ramp up the costs. Double check the age limits before you book. One of the biggest concerns among the lodges and safaris are the noise levels that can frighten the animals away. Baby, toddler and young child noises are one of the top reasons some lodges and safaris require older kids. Most safaris expect them to be 7 or older. However, if you have a private jeep just for your family, they might lower the age limit.

4. Check Out The Medical Facilities

There are plenty of malaria-free destinations for safari, but it’s still best to remain prepared and assume the worst. The risk rises in certain areas over others, so ask lots of questions of your trip planner (or our trusty Google search!). Take anti-malaria medication and ensure there are proper medical facilities where you’re staying. Botswana and Namibia carry a low risk of malaria, but the risks rise as you go north.

5. Plan Your Itinerary Carefully

Children can get impatient and cranky if the weather’s hot or if they need to travel on a dirt road that seems to go on for hours. You wouldn’t want to get stuck in the middle of Africa under the hot sun with cranky, hungry kids. This can spoil all the fun for everyone. So again, check with your travel operator about the roads, the weather, the driving time and safari travel conditions. However, once on the safari, you should know when to call it a day, since tired and cranky kids make for terrible safari companions. Keep the temperament and personality of your child in mind before planning your trip.

6. Follow Some Rules

In order to make the trip more manageable, set out some basic rules for the kids to follow. Keep the length of the game drives short, and do not force the children to go on and on. If they fall asleep while watching cheetahs, giraffe’s or rhinos, don’t wake them up. Use their body clock to plan the length of your game drives going forward. Return to your lodge to give your children rest. Plan some in between activities between the game drives, and do something different. You could go for some cultural activities, long walks or even horse riding. As most safaris take place in the early morning and late evening hours, things can get boring for the children. So, make sure they have plenty of rest and sleep before your start.

7. Might Have To Discuss Mating And Kill With Your Children

The wild landscape exposes primal behaviors of the animals. You might see lions mating or a pride of lions getting ready for a kill. Those subjects are new and sensitive (and sometimes scary) for your child, so be well prepared. You have to teach your children how to sit still and remain quiet so as to not to disturb the animals. Teach them how to identify animal tracks and how to keep a safe distance from the animals.

8. Safaris Are Not Just About The Big 5

Although safaris and the big 5 are synonymous, it’s equally fun to focus on the small animals. You can take a guided drive around a reserve trying to spot lions, but your children would be equally interested in the small creatures as well. However, it is essential to tell your children that safaris can be exciting, but they are much more than just a desire to see the animals. They need to be patient as they might be out in the fields for hours.

9. Take Books And A Sketch Pad When Out On A Drive

You’re on a guided safari drive with a youngster – it’s a good idea to bring a diary or a sketch pad for them in case they get bored. Ask them to observe and draw the wildlife and scenery they see around them. Or they can take notes in their journals. Urge them to note the shape of the animals, the colors, the way they walk, etc… You’ll have lots to discuss. Bring along any animal or bird books, and try to kick off some conversation about nature. You can also get wildlife guidebooks once at your lodge and pull them out if or when your little one starts getting bored.

10. Cameras, Recorders, And Binoculars

Most cameras are for adults, and not a toy you want your son or daughter to have – unless they’re old enough to be careful with it. But a good pair of durable safari binoculars are a must-have for your trip. If by chance you have more than one child on the trip, it’s best to have binoculars for each child so they don’t fight over them when the excitement begins. They will keep them engaged during the game drive, and lets them watch every move the animals make. The elder children can easily handle a camcorder, and it can be exciting for them to shoot their own wildlife videos and create some great multi-media memories.

Everyone has their own vision of what a safari would be like, and how it would be to watch a lion or cheetah from close quarters. After all, there are no shortage of books, movies, National Geographic and Discovery channels on the subject of wildlife and safaris. But, nothing can beat the experience of exploring vibrant Africa and its wildlife on a safari.

Don’t get anxious about taking your kids on a Safari, or planning a trip to Africa. The hardest part is just packing to get there. Once you have that knocked out, the rest will be fun-filled, memorable and exciting! Nothing can be more precious than the look of wonder on the face of your child as he sees a giraffe or lion in their habitat for the first time. This is an opportunity to get closer to nature (and your kids!)

And finally, if you’re too worried about them on the trip, then begin with baby steps. Take them first to a zoo or a smaller game park within your state or home country. Let them become more receptive towards nature, and develop a natural curiosity to learn more about wild animals. Then you can step up to the real deal safari trip when they’re ready.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.

The Most Dangerous Beaches In The World

Sunny beaches can offer a perfect gateway vacation. What can be more enjoyable than relaxing at a sandy beach. However, that natural beauty can be dangerous. The dangers can range from unexpected animal attacks to strong rip currents. Discover some of the most dangerous beaches on the planet.

New Smyrna Beach, Florida, USA

The beach is known as one of the top 10 beaches in Florida. However, the reputation of this beach is not perfect.

In 2007 there were 112 shark attacks recorded worldwide. Seventeen of them or 15% of all attacks in the world occurred at the New Smyrna Beach. The ocean waters near the beach feature black tip, spinner and bull sharks. Swimmers and surfers can become accidental targets for these predators.

Out of 238 attacks  registered at the beach over the years, none were fatal yet. As a matter of fact the beach found its place in the “Guinness Book Of Records” as “The Sharks Capital Of The World”.

Cape Tribulation, Australia

The name of this beautiful beach serves as a warning for potential dangers. Cape Tribulation beach is a home to many dangerous animals. From dangerous crocodiles and ostrich-like birds to venomous snakes.

Land animals are not the only risk at the beach. From October to June the biggest troubles are in the water. Rainy season brings thousands of box jellyfish. They are known as the most venomous jellyfish in the world! Their venom is able to kill a human within minutes if stung. The poison attacks the cardiovascular system, leading the swimmer to drawn.

Praia De Boa Viagem, Brasil

Shark attacks were very uncommon at this sandy beach. However, during last 25 years there were at least fifty shark attacks reported. May not seem too high, but 19 of them were fatal.

There is an opinion that fishing boats are to blame. They destroy ecosystem by fishing close to the shore.

Shenzhen, China

This popular vacation destination is located close to Hong Kong. As a matter of fact, it is so popular, that it can be dangerously overcrowded. During high season the place is packed at the beach and in the water. As a result, Shenzhen beach is known for its accidents.

Playa Zipolite, Mexico

This beautiful sandy beach is also known as “The Beach Of The Dead”. You might think that the beach won’t be too popular due to its name. But this paradise-like looking place is attracting a lot of tourists.

As a matter of fact, the sandy shore is perfectly safe. However, the water is extremely dangerous. Huge waves create deadly undercurrents. Thanks to lifeguards accidents have decreased significantly in recent years.

Staithe Beach, Yorkshire

Staithe Beach is located in the UK. As you can imagine, it is not the warmest beach on the planet. This place is known for its surfing opportunities. However, it is somewhat controversial.

The group “Surfers Against Sewage” stated that this is one of the worst beaches in Europe. The waters are very polluted and cannot meet basic European standards. It is appeared that runoffs from nearby farms pollute the water.

It is very rare to see swimmer at the beach. But surfers and fans of paddle sports are quite common.

Hanakapiai Beach, Hawaii

Hanakapiai beach is magnificent. It is actually not as easy accessible. One has to hike two miles along the Kalalau Trail to reach the beach. And it is totally worth it! The beach is very beautiful.

However, as it is remote, there is no lifeguard station there. At first glance, the water may appear calm and safe. But strong rip currents are known to pull swimmers out to the open sea. If someone pulled, the closest accessible shore area is about six miles away. Over the years, at least 83 people have drowned here.

About the Author: Michael Flynn

My name is Michael Flynn and I am a lifelong world traveler. I have visited over 100 countries and have stepped foot on each continent. I love to visit new places, meet new people, and try cultural foods.