By October 23, 2018 0 Comments Read More →

More than the Beaches : Mix up your Trip

What do we travel for?  Culture, activities, history, extreme weather or just the ability to lounge on a beach for two weeks soaking up the sun and sipping the cocktails?
 
Why restrict yourself, pick a destination that has them all and when you get bored of laying horizontal, get up off the sunbed and venture out and explore.  Shun the package holiday and try and look for a travel agent that can offer you more than all inclusive cocktails, warm buffet food and sunbeds round the pool that are packed tighter than sardines. 
 
Here’s a couple of our top destinations:-

Goa, India

Goa has it all, and whilst it has been getting more commercialised over the last decade, it still offers great opportunities to mix up that trip.  Goa has some most amazing beaches in the world.  Stick around Candolim or Calangute and you can enjoy busy beaches around lots of your fellow package travelers, but when you have had enough of these get hold of an experienced local travel operator and head off north some some of the more peaceful stretches of sand on the Goan coast and explore some of the local history and culture.   Here are our favourites:
 
  • Anjuna & Vagator Beaches –  can be found just to the south of Chapora River – consider staying a night or two in the beach huts so you get to see the stunning sunsets.
  • Take a wander through old Goa – Explore the 16th century Portuguese architecture and the old churches.
  • Travel farther afield to Hampi – yes it may be  bit of a slog to get there (try the train its fun) , but the splendour and magnificence of the Hampi monuments that await you will be worth the trip

goa-sunset-with-sellers-in-distance

Cuba – Cigars, Cars and Cerveza

Cuba’s beaches and independent tourism sector have become much more accessible in recent years.  Now is a good time to visit and mix up that sun tan with a bit of the Cuban culture.  

First the beaches  – Playa Los Flamencos can be found in Cayo Coco, its surrounded the the all inclusive hotels, but offers a little peaceful beach time.  It set on 3km of fine white sand with crystal clear waters affording you a great snorkelling opportunity when you get bored of the beach.  

Leave the beaches behind and Cuba will offer you so much more, here are our picks:-

  • Delve deep in to the Cuban cultural revolution on a tour – Whatever your politics, this is part of Cuba’s history so why not explore some of the landmarks that shaped the revolution while you are here.  Consider doing this as part of an organised tour and you will benefit from the knowledgeable local guides.   
  • Get under the skin of Havana Cuba’s capital. – from puffing on their world famous cigars sipping a coffee and watching the world go by.  The Old Quarter is a UNESCO Site and well worth seeing, if only to watch the 1960’s classic cars roll by the Malecó, why not considering hiring one to explore the further reaches of the city?.  Finally open your ears and let the music waft in from the bars and squares around the city. 
  •  Looking for something different?   Time your trip for the Latin American film festival in Gibara. The southern edge of the Cuban islands offer something for the more adventurous traveller. 

So for your next trip do something a little more interesting and ditch those package tours and come home with something more than a tan and a few extra inches on your waistline.   Bring back memories of the people and the history of the places you visit. 

Posted in: Travel Planning

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