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If you're planning a stay in any of the hostels in Paris it probably means you'll be involved in some serious sightseeing. But as you dash in and out of museums and galleries, don't forget to take some time out to indulge in something else the city is very famous for - its café culture. The café-bars of the French capital are renowned throughout the world, and there is good reason for that. Sitting quietly sipping coffee in a Parisian café is one of life's great pleasures! As is well documented, however, the city's café culture is quite unique, and it pays to be aware of some local etiquette.

Sit and Sip

On first glance, in high-profile places, coffees can appear a little expensive. But when you consider you'll be able to take your time, relax, read, write postcards or just watch the world go by, it doesn't seem all that bad. You'll never feel rushed and can sit at a table for an hour or two without a waiter batting an eyelid.

No Smoking

As in any public place now in France (including all the hostels in Paris), smoking is not allowed in cafés. There are, however, usually some open-air tables where you can still light up. If you're offended by the smell of smoke, stay inside and choose a table that won't be affected by travelling fumes.

Grab a Bite

Most cafés in the city also serve snacks, so you can enjoy delicious pastries for breakfast, and soups, baguettes and other light bites at lunchtime. You can often also order a simple three-course meal special.

Not Just Coffee

Although the word café means coffee, the cafés in France are actually called café-bars. This means they serve all kinds of drinks, both hot and cold, and you can order anything from water to beer or wine.

Service Charge

Service and taxes are always included in the price on the menu and there are no hidden additional charges. Obviously, if you want to leave an extra tip that's up to you, but bear in mind something will already have been included in the price.

The Parisian Way

The idea of sitting in a Parisian café evokes images of romance and 'times gone by'. The culture originated when life in the city was much more leisurely and people could afford to spend plenty of time whiling away the hours. That luxury is no longer available for the normal person, and in the past 50 years, there has been a huge decline in the number of cafés in the city. It could even be argued that the culture now relies for the most part on tourists and visitors staying in the hotels and hostels. In Paris today, for locals, the pace of life is such that a coffee break is short and sweet.

While traditional cafés may be in decline, they certainly won't disappear, especially if visitors do their bit to preserve them. Find the best café (there's any number within walking distance of all the hostels in Paris), then just sit back and enjoy! It's the Parisian way, after all.


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When it comes to selecting a destination for a Northern Lights holiday, most people tend to look towards one of two locations: either the Lapland region of Sweden or the island that lies to the west of that country, Iceland. And while travellers unfamiliar with each country may consider them, essentially, similar - they are, after all, both partially included in the Arctic Circle - nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, the type of experience offered by either country is different in almost every regard, except for one: they are both excellent points from which to sight the Aurora Borealis. This, combined with their picturesque scenery and a plethora of complementary activities, is a large part of the reason why these two countries are so popular.

Below we focus on perhaps the more understated of the two locations, Iceland, in terms of its climate, activities, and places to visit while on a Northern Lights holiday.

Grown-Up Geography Excursion

Where terrain is concerned, Iceland is almost like a 'grown-up' version of a geography lesson one would take at school - but not in a classroom, for real! The country is most famous for its breath-taking volcanic landscape, which appeals to nature enthusiasts, even beyond the expectations of a sighting of the vision of the Aurora Borealis. This country also has an advantage over Sweden where climate is concerned, with minimum and maximum temperatures being far more forgiving. However, those taking a Northern Lights holiday to Iceland are advised to dress appropriately, in several layers, as the weather can still be quite cold.

Where activities and sightseeing are concerned, Iceland is a dream destination - with plenty to see and do aside from the lights. The famous thermal Blue Lagoon is a definite must-see, and whale watching tours (in both summer and winter) or invigorating rides on horseback are available.

The country's close relationship with its natural environment is evident at every turn, however those who love the excitement of more sociable activities will also find much to enjoy. New Year in Reykjavik, the country's capital, is invariably an exciting and festive event, and the country is fast becoming known for its world-class cuisine. Seafood is in plentiful supply all year round, and puffin and rotten shark (which is nothing like as bad as it sounds) are some of the recommended delicacies when tasting one's way through this Nordic country.

Iceland has an abundant wealth of attractions to offer visitors, either as the chosen location for their Northern Lights holiday or otherwise.



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Waterparks offer a great deal of fun in the sun, of course, but you need to take the proper steps to make sure you and your loved ones stay safe and hydrated on your next visit. Here are some of the most important things to remember for safety, comfort, and fun.

Dress Appropriately

Since you will be outside for the majority of the day, you will want to protect you and your children from the shining sun. For the most protection, have everyone wear a hat and a loose t-shirt, as well as water shoes and sunglasses. If you are bringing younger children, keep an eye on them to make sure they are not getting tired or overheated.

It is also important that you bring plenty of sunscreen and apply it on a regular basis. Put it on 30 minutes before you leave home and then re-apply it every time someone gets out of the water. Even waterproof sunscreen needs to be re-applied every 80-90 minutes if you have gotten wet and dried yourself off with a towel. You will also want to consider using a lip balm that has an SPF of 15 or higher.

Keep Hydrated

It is easy to become dehydrated quickly when you are running around in the sun, and it is even easier not to notice if you are getting cooled off periodically by water slides. Be sure you and your children are drinking plenty of liquids throughout the day. Stay away from any caffeinated beverages, however, because they dehydrate you more quickly.

Close Observation

You should always keep a close eye on your children when visiting waterparks, even if there is a lifeguard present. Either be in the water with them or watch them carefully. Lifeguards are responsible for scanning large areas and cannot see everything all the time.

Pay Attention to the Rules

All waterparks have specific safety rules and regulations, sure be to read all posted signage. Different slides and pools will be appropriate for different age groups, so make sure your small child does not get on a slide intended for older children and adults. Check all regulations related to age, height, ability to swim and medical condition. If you have any questions whatsoever, talk to a staff member or a lifeguard.

These are just some of the things you will want to keep in mind at waterparks to ensure you and you're family stay safe, hydrated, and having fun.



Has that dream vacation been on your mind a lot lately, but the travel costs keep holding you back? Make that much-needed getaway possible with Wizootravel. Save up to 60% on hotels and flights with our guaranteed cheapest deals to destinations worldwide. No hidden fees. Just what you see. Book your dream holiday now!





As exciting as traveling can be, it also comes with some stressful aspects. Hurling luggage to and fro can be a breeze, or it can cause strain on your travelling experience. The first thing you need to do is consider your travelling style and cater specifically to those needs when choosing the right travel luggage for your vacation. With that in mind, we have compiled a list of some important things to consider beforehand.

Suitcase or Backpack?
We mainly focus on suitcases rather than backpacks in this article for the following reasons:
  • Convenience
Maneuvering through airports with a lot of people and traffic, while carrying a large weight on your back is not easy. Suitcases are a lot simpler to maneuver through traffic with ease.
  • Wheels
Simply roll your luggage with ease. This is our top reason for picking a suitcase.
  • Organization
A backpack does not give much organization leeway. You'll only have access to a top-loading packing mechanism where you will be forced to remove everything to reach an item at the bottom. A suitcase gives you a clear view of all your belonging as soon as you unzip or open it.
  • Impressions
Carrying a backpack doesn't really look good.

Hard or Soft?

You should choose your travel luggage based on your travelling needs. For example; are you travelling for business, or for fun? Are you planning to carry any expensive items that might break easily? A hard carry-on is perfect for anyone carrying items such as an expensive camera, or if your vacation is going to be in areas with harsh weather conditions. Hard casing will offer protection to any item prone to breakage.

Soft luggage is perfect for anyone looking for added storage. These bags can expand making them ideal for anyone wanting to carry some souvenirs back with them. Also, soft carry-on cases are easy to stuff into an overhead compartment.

Size

One main thing to keep in mind is to never purchase a carry-on that's larger than you can actually lift over your head. Next, how long is your vacation going to last for? Many people are able to survive with fewer items than others but when visiting a foreign place, a smaller carry-on is more ideal. Before purchasing a carry-on, inquire about that specific airline's international and domestic size requirements.

Some airplanes allow smaller carry-on's so it's best to always restrict yourself to buying a suitcase that's approximately 21 x 13 x 9 and aim for a weight of 15 - 20 pounds.

Here's a breakdown of some popular carry-on sizes:
  • International carry-on size is mostly 18 - 20 inches
  • The most popular size of a carry-on is 21 - 22 inches - This is a great size, offering ample space, yet light enough to lift. You can travel for a month without much hassle.
  • If you're travelling with a loved one, then a medium size would be perfect. So, consider purchasing a 23 - 24-inch carry-on.
  • For those who love having extra space, then 25 - 27 inches will provide you with lots of room to carry your souvenirs or your clothing items. Also, if you are vacationing with your family, then you can easily fit everyone's belongings into just one of these suitcases for easy handling.
  • A 28 - 32-inch size is simply too large for a travel suitcase. It's very bulky and can be very hard to manoeuvre. This size is simply best suited for anyone planning to move abroad or anyone thinking of going to live in another country for long durations of time.
  • Sometimes it might be better to purchase two smaller suitcases as opposed to buying a large, heavy one. Granted, you'll have to pay extra but it'll be worth it because you won't have to worry about stuffing everything into one bag or, incurring overweight fees when travelling back home with some souvenirs. 
Color

It's best to purchase a bag with unique prints and colors. This way, you'll find it easy to spot it on the luggage carousel. Also, you won't accidentally mistake it for someone else's bag.

Wheels

Wheel choices come in two options; two or four. Two wheels is the most common as these bags tend to be lighter and easier to run with. You can also yank your bag over stairs with ease without having to manually lift it. However, these type of cases tend to tip over easily.

Four wheels stand upright allowing you to easily roll them sideways in crowded or shallow pathways, such as inside a plane.

Look for bags with locking wheels - this will prevent your bag rolling away.

Material

Always make sure that your luggage has water resistant materials or it has at least been treated with a sealant on the inside to keep your belongings dry. This is quite important as sometimes your luggage might be placed on wet, sticky, or dirty surfaces by baggage handlers.

If your bag doesn't have a moisture-resistant sealant, then simply line the top and bottom of your suitcase with plastic bags (a garbage bag or a dry cleaning bag will do just fine.) This simple trick will keep your clothes dry even if your suitcase gets wet on the outside.

Straps

Purchase a suitcase that comes with adjustable straps. These straps will help keep your belongings secure and compressed.

Piggy Back Clip

Have you ever seen those looped clips located on top of some travel bags? They are called piggyback clips and they allow a traveler to clip a smaller second bag on top of the larger one - this way, your items will stay secure together throughout your travels.

If your carry-on doesn't come with any piggyback clips, you can go online and buy one for a reasonable price.

Compartments

Compartments come in handy when you want to organize your belongings. For example; instead of storing your small shampoo, or liquids, with your clothes, store them in an external pocket (this will prevent your clothes from getting ruined in case of any spillage). Plus, they'll be easy to locate when the need arises.

Author: Bob Tom

Has that dream vacation been on your mind a lot lately, but the travel costs keep holding you back? Make that much-needed getaway possible with Wizootravel. Save up to 60% on hotels and flights with our guaranteed cheapest deals to destinations worldwide. No hidden fees. Just what you see. Book your dream holiday now! 



There are a lot of choices of destination when you are going on vacation. The main questions are how big your budget is, what sorts of activities do you and your family love doing, and whether you are traveling domestically or internationally.
Ask any traveler and they will have numerous suggestions, but here are top-rated places to go that should suit every taste and budget. The overseas suggestions will be worth a visit no matter what the exchange rate.
1. Singapore

This is a fantastic island-country and city with the best food in the world at the most affordable prices. The accommodation ranges from tourist to five-star, all at affordable prices. Book online for a package deal. There’s so much to do that you won’t be spending time in your room. The public transportation is superb, so you can get anywhere you need to go. Buy a travel pass when you arrive at Changi airport and head out for adventure.
The tourist buses called “ducks” will take you around every attraction in the city center, plus onto the river. Nearly everyone speaks English and the British influence is still strong. Try the chocolate buffet at the Fullerton Hotel on Saturdays and the original Singapore sling at the world-famous Raffles bar. Even the height of luxury is affordable in this paradise.
2. New Zealand

If you get a good deal from Air New Zealand during the “off-season”, which are the spring and fall in the Northern Hemisphere, you can head down under for a song. They also offer multi-airfare passes so you can get up to six internal flights for only a bit more than the cost of the international ticket. You will usually fly into Auckland on the North Island and branch out from there.
For those who love the tropics, head north to the beautiful Bay of Islands for a beach holiday. If you want a spa holiday, head to the middle of the island, Rotorua.
Are you a fan of Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit? Head to Wellington on the North Island for tours of many of the locations used. If you love skiing, head for Queenstown on the South Island to ski the Remarkables, filmed so lovingly in the movies just mentioned.
Best of all are the backpackers' hostels – you can stay in a Microtel for around 6 USD per night. The food is fantastic, as is the local wine.
3. Ireland

Ireland is full of fun, food and fabulous attractions. A flight to Shannon Airport is only about five hours from the east coast of The US.
Ireland is full of castles, unspoilt nature, and seafood. Public transportation is easy and cheap, everyone speaks English, and they are all very friendly to North Americans. Great bed and breakfasts abound. Expect to pay around $13 for a meal and $35 for accommodation each night outside Dublin.
Dublin caters to tourists, so it does not have the real Irish feel of Cork or Galway, but it does have a fantastic amount of attractions, including Trinity College and the two cathedrals. The youth hostels near Christ Church Cathedral are clean and modern. Expect to pay $20 to $100 per night, depending on season and number of people in the room.
4. Portland, Oregon

This is a family-friendly city with lots to do and superb public transport. It is also the gateway to all sorts of scenic locations, including the glacier Mt. Hood, where you can ski all year round. The variety of restaurants is as good as New York City, but for a fraction of the price. Don’t miss Powell’s – the largest bookstore in the world.
5. Nashville

Affordable, family friendly, with lots to see and do. It beats Disneyland/world by a mile in terms of value. There are seven theme parks within driving distance and attractions of every kind to enjoy, from music to museums – all at affordable prices.
Has that dream vacation been on your mind a lot lately, but the travel costs keep holding you back? Make that much-needed getaway possible with Wizootravel. Save up to 60% on hotels and flights with our guaranteed cheapest deals to destinations worldwide. No hidden fees. Just what you see. Book your dream holiday now!
There is something magical about a hot air balloon ride. Soaring up in the sky, going past the clouds fills the heart with a child-like glee. Since its invention in 1783, hot air balloons have given humans the unique opportunity to see the world from high up above. Be it marveling at the beauty of serene landscapes or seeing the exciting theater of the natural sunset amidst the clouds, hot air balloons help to open a new door of experience for everyone.

The wind tousling your hair, and your eyes feasting on the beauty of nature, hot air balloon rides are a marvelous way to spend your time. They can also be incredibly romantic. Indeed many people have taken the wonderful opportunity to propose to their beloved. A central piece in a Disney movie, hot air balloons capture a child's innocence and excitement with incredible precision.

Here are 5 best Hot Air Balloon Rides in the world that you need to experience with your loved ones or alone:

Napa Valley, California 

While most of Napa's pleasures are best delighted in on the ground with a glass close by, a view from above offers another incredible method to encounter California's well-known valley. On the off chance that you set out from Yountville, you'll be able to see landscapes of Mount St. Helena and the Mayacamas Mountains, with clearing vineyards in the closer view; in the correct climate conditions, you'll even have the capacity to see the San Francisco horizon out yonder. Numerous inflatable organizations offer early lunch and wine sampling bundles with their rides to top off the aeronautical experience.


Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya 


Hot air expands in Kenya's Maasai Mara National Reserve have filled in as the ultra-sentimental scenery of almost every East Africa safari leaflet since the early years of extravagance tourism (we're taking a gander at you, Micato Safaris). Like the Serengeti, here, natural life spotting is achievable year-round; however, the vistas here are most stupendous when the wildebeest have relocated over the Mara River into the Maasai Mara, ordinarily during July and October.

Loire Valley, France 

The Edenic valley in the French heartland is best known for its gathering of dazzling châteaux, however the pleasant towns, clearing greenery, and winding stream characterize the locale as much as its stately homes. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Loire Valley is just two hours south of Paris, making it a simple side excursion from the city. The spring and summer months see the locale in full blossom, making it the ideal time for a dawn or nightfall ride over the rural scene.

Jaipur, India 

The strongholds and royal residences of the Pink City are sufficiently noteworthy, yet getting a flying perspective from elevated inflatable trumps a mobile visit unfailingly. Associate over Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Winds), Amber Fort and City Palace (to name yet three of the city's engineering treasures), before gliding over provincial towns and remote stone sanctuaries. Book a trip for dawn, and you'll see Jaipur spring up. While a closer look is needed to peer at the spellbinding architecture, an aerial view can help you look at the city from a whole new perspective.

Yangshuo, China 
The limestone karst arrangements close Yangshuo and Guilin draw guests from everywhere throughout the world, offering a supernatural scene along the Li River that has been deified in everything from customary Chinese works of art to Star Wars. Most experience the locale by pontoon, yet consider a hot air expand ride as an incredible option for dodging the group. Untethered flights take off to as high as 4,900 feet and take you through the karst crests and encompassing farmland, while fastened flights, picking up an elevation of just around 300 feet, offer a similarly engaging alternative for those hoping to remain nearer to the ground.


Author: Roger Voshall


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Family vacations can be some of the most fun, happiest times in anyone's life. They offer lifelong memories that will stick with both the parents and kids for the rest of their lives. A lot of family vacation spots are great for grandparents as well.

Where should you take your family this year? What kinds of activities are everyone looking forward to?

Here is an overview of some of the top destinations for family trips:

Disney World

Disney has always been, and probably always will be, the number one getaway spot for families. It's known for its parades, rides, performances, and overall experience. Everyone should visit Disney World at least once in their lives. If you haven't yet taken your kids there, it's never too late to do so.

Grand Canyon

This large, infamous national park is an admired family destination. There is plenty to do here - it's not just about sightseeing. You can go rafting, hiking, kayaking, and take a trip on the Railway. If possible, don't go during the summer, as you will have to deal with crowds.

Dinosaur Valley State Park

What kid doesn't love dinosaurs? Located NW of Glen Rose in Texas, this park covers over 1,500 acres. It offers a wide variety of outdoor opportunities for family activities. Take the kids through the area and check out the best-preserved dinosaur tracks. This is not only a fun vacation, but a highly educational one as well.

Monterey Bay Aquarium

This is the place to go if you want to see beautiful scenery along California's coastline. It showcases local wildlife and sea creatures. The tank design makes it so that kids can get close to the sea turtles, bat rays and even sharks! There are plenty of fun activities as well, such as humpback whale spotting and penguin feeding shows. Stay at one of the many affordable family-friendly hotels in the area.

Gatlinburg, TN

There is plenty of family fun to be found in Gatlinburg. In this historic southern town, you can play mini-golf, go skiing, enjoy rides at an amusement park, visit museums and aquariums, check out Ripley's Believe it Or Not: Odditorium, and more.

London, England

London is among the best family vacation spots in Europe. There are no language barriers and plenty to discover and experience. Even though the city is known for high price tags, there are still budget lodging options at chain hotels and small inns.

Family-Friendly Cruise

Why not enjoy yourselves on a cruise ship? There are fun activities available for parents and kids of all ages. You can also easily arrange for family-oriented excursions in port cities. In addition to the Disney Cruise Line, there are some Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and Carnival cruises that cater to families. Look over the itineraries and select one that you think everyone will enjoy. Visit several family vacation spots in 7 - 10 days on a cruise ship!

Author: George Botwin

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