Fehmarn Island: between cycle paths, beaches, nature and lots of sun

With 2200 hours of sunshine a year, the island of Fehrmarn is not only one of the sunniest areas in Germany, but it is also the third largest island in the country.
Fehmarn has 300 kilometers of scenic cycling routes. From flat rocky paths along the sea to open meadows and fields, which glow bright yellow during the rapeseed flowering season in spring.
Kiters and surfers love the island thanks to the good wind conditions and infrastructure. Tens of thousands of migratory birds rest in Fehmarn’s four nature reserves every year.

Information on the island
St. Peter's Church in Landkirken, Fehmarn
SSt. Peter’s Church in Landkirken

The name of the island dates back to fe mer, in Slavic “by the sea”. The inhabitants call their island “Crust” because of the shape reminiscent of the crust of bread.
Fehmarn is located between the Kiel Bay and the Mecklenburg Bay in the Baltic Sea. Staberhuk is the easternmost point and Marienleuchte the northernmost point of Schleswig-Holstein.
Fehmarn has 12,552 inhabitants (as of 31 December 2016), of which around 6,000 live in Burg.
Since 1 January 2003 the whole island has become the city of Fehmarn (from the merger of the rural communities of Bannesdorf, Landkirchen and Westfehmarn).
Together with Burg, Landkirchen and Petersdorf are considered the main towns of Fehmarn.

How to get: The Fehmarnsund Bridge
Image by Marabu from Pixabay

Fehmarn can be reached via the Puttgarden ferry station in regional or international long-distance rail transport on the Vogelfluglinie, direct transport link between Copenhagen and Hamburg.
Since 1963 Fehmarn has been connected to the mainland via the Fehmarnsund Bridge (also known as the “hanger”).
On 31 July 2010, the new Fehmarn-Burg station was opened.
Basically you can reach Fehmarn by taking a regional from Hamburg to Lübeck then change to another regional in the direction of Puttarden, and with this you get off comfortably in Fehmarn-Burg.
Motorists can reach the island on the “Vogelfluglinie” via the European route 47.
The Fehmarn-Neujellingsdorf aerodrome is located in Neujellingsdorf.

What to do in Fehmarn
Image by Ronile from Pixabay

Fehmarn has 78 km of coastline divided into 20 different types of beaches:

  • To the south are the whitest and sandiest beaches on the island
  • East: steep coast
  • North: dunes with inland lakes
  • West: mainly natural beaches
  • flat slabs of rock to the west and north of the island

4 nature reserves:

  • Northern Lakes Plains (accessible)
  • Wallnau (NABU Wallnau Waterfowl Reserve)
  • Grüner Brink (accessible)
  • Krummsteert / Sulsdorfer Wiek (Krummsteert not accessible)
Sport
Kitesur at Fehmarn
Image by Olle August from Pixabay

Fehmarn is known for water sports with 17 areas around the island for kite-surfing.
Sailors can sail in 5 marinas with good nautical infrastructure. Due to its geographic location and wind conditions, sailors like to use Fehmarn as an ideal stopover for a safe and peaceful voyage without complicated turns.
The Danish South Sea in the Schleswig-Holstein Bay, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern or other countries close to the Baltic Sea are easy to reach and explore from Fehmarn by sailboat.
Diving, fishing, hiking, running, walking, biking (300km of marked cycle paths) and horse riding are popular on the island.
Other sporting activities include: climbing, Adventure Golf Fehmarn, Golf Park Fehmarn with an 18-hole golf course and the indoor wave pool “Feh Mare”.

Museums
  • Ernst Ludwig Kirchner : Exhibitions of the Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Association with Evidence of Kirchner’s artistic work on Fehmarn including reproductions of his best-known paintings in their original size, historical photographs, notebook reproductions and biographical data.
    www.kirchnervereinfehmarn.de
  • Galileo World of Knowledge: In this interactive 3,200 square meter museum you can explore the thematic worlds “Technology and Energy” and “Earth and Life”.
    www.galileo-fehmarn.de
  • Fehmarn Submarine Museum: Visitors can experience life in a confined space during a visit to the U11 submarine and discover the postwar German Submarine Fleet exhibit.
    www.ostsee-u-boot.de
  • Mühlenmuseum Jachen Flünk: The “Jachen Flünk” mill is the oldest windmill in Schleswig-Holstein. It is still fully operational and is open to the public as a mill and agricultural museum.
  • Lifesaving Museum Fehmarn: Exhibition on the history and technology of rescuing people at sea with video and audio documents, ship models, information on the German Society for the Rescue of the Castaway.
    www.seenotrettungsmuseum-fehmarn.de
  • Dark experiment: With an eye mask and blind cane you can experience a walk in the woods or a shopping in the supermarket.
    www.dunkelexperiment.de


Evente and Festival
Thies Rätzke photo

Some of the most important festivals and events are:

  • The Surf-Festival: The Fehmarn Surf Festival starts in May and kicks off the main water sports season. Do not miss, within the event itself, one of the largest outdoor fairs for surf and SUP athletes, where many new products can be tested for free.
    www.surffestival.de
  • The Midsummer Bulli Festival (VW Bus): A little nostalgic, 1960s surf vibe at the Midsummer Bulli Festival (VW Bus), held in June in South Beach. A high density of T1 and T2 vehicles in the beach field plus a varied support program with BULLI-Bar, the Sunset BULLIvard shopping street and live entertainment on stage.
    http://www.midsummerfestival.de/
  • The Rapeseed Blossom Festival: a three-day festival with lots of live music, dances and shows. Visitors can party and stroll among numerous stalls offering a mix of Fehmarn specialties from local crafts.
    The highlight is the coronation of the Rapsblütenkönigin (Queen of the Rapeseed Blossom), which is celebrated on Saturday during a Queen’s Ball with fireworks, followed by a colorful parade on Sunday through the streets of Petersdorf. The new queen will represent Fehmarn for one year nationwide on various occasions.
    For this reason, many girls come to Fehrman to attend the Rapeseed Blossom Festival.
    “Rapsi”, a blend of orange juice, rapeseed honey and liqueurs is a yellow drink that you can enjoy at the festival.

  • The Wine Festival: In a welcoming atmosphere, wine connoisseurs and wine producers from various German growing areas meet to experience a fun weekend around the theme of wine. You can taste various wines directly under the open sky. Culinary delights, expert advice and daily live music guarantee the best in entertainment.
  • The Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival: The Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival concerts have become a solid tradition in Fehmarn and are among the most loved highlights of the year. Renowned artists offer first-class listening pleasure at Hof Johannisberg.
  • Since 2003, every year on the last Wednesday of August, the Kröpel Festival has been held in Petersdorf, where everything revolves around the Kröpel. the confederation of “country women” from the western part of Fehmarn cooks the island specialties directly on site, so that you can smell the scent of 1,500 “Kröpel” in the air. Live music and small stalls of handicrafts such as silver and stone jewelry, woodwork, Danish fashion or canola pillows are presented during the festival. Fun for kids with skill games, wheel of fortune etc, make it attractive for kids as well.
  • Fehmarn Christmas Market, Marketplace Burg: The lovingly decorated stalls present a wide range of culinary delights and attractive Christmas gifts. Around 100 Christmas trees and festive lights flood the market square with sparkling light and create a Christmas atmosphere. A varied program with live entertainment ensures that young and old will not be bored.

    More info on: https://www.fehmarn.de/en/events
Local gastronomy
Fish sandwiches in the port of Orth
Dirk Moeller photo

In Fehmarn you can choose from a great gastronomic selection, from regional to international with a cuisine made rich in regional specialties of freshly caught Baltic fish and numerous (farm) cafes with fantastic cakes.

Grills on the harbor
Barbecue area at the marina in Burgtiefe
Thies Rätzke photo

Pier, wine, sunset…
Modern grills and nice seating await you in the Burgtiefe marina! In one of the most beautiful barbecue areas on the island!
While the sausages is cooking, relax and enjoy the marina while watching the sea and boats. Whether you are a group or a couple, the waterfront will always be a stylish grill!

XXL grill in Wulfen, steep coast: Sun, sound of the sea, charm of the cliffs, beach, Lawn, smell of coal, view of the Fehmarn-sund brücke…
Try it!
From Easter to October it can be especially nice to spend a day here.
The sea view is truly splendid.
The large grill is perfect for groups.
The toilets are directly on site.
The grill is available for a supplement of € 20 including cleaning at Georg Muhl,
Tel. 04371 6758,
email: info@fewo-muhl.de

Where to eat fish

If you are in Fehmarn you must absolutely try the fish sandwiches and, why not, also some unique locations where you can taste fish from the Baltic Sea:

Bread, cakes and much more

Börke is a bakery in Fehmarn that you absolutely must visit if you want to try some delicacies for your breakfast or just to enjoy something sweet.
Rapeseed honey bread, homemade jam, delicious cakes, biscuits are just some of the specialties you can find here.
https://www.inselbaeckerei-boerke.de/

Where sleeping in Fehmarn
Thies Rätzke photo

Accommodation for tourists on the island of Fehmarn is divided as follows:

  • 50% are apartments and holiday homes
  • 34% campings
  • 10% hotels and inns
  • the remaining 4% is allocated to pensions, recreation / training houses, youth hostels / shelters and prevention / rehabilitation clinics
  • There is a 4-star hotel.
  • Fehmarn has around 14,534 beds, of which 1,600 are hotel beds.
  • 17 campsites on the island offer a total of around 6,000 pitches and over 18,000 beds.

With 17 campsites directly on the coast, Fehmarn is a popular destination for campers, meaning the island welcomes many repeat guests each year, but continues to do so to delight new guests.
From large campsites with lots of exciting leisure activities to small family campsites, Fehmarn offers a choice of motorhomes and pitches for every guest. For those who prefer a little more comfort and do not want to do without their own bathroom or a fully equipped kitchen, the mobile home is the perfect solution and can be rented at many campsites.
This year four of the 17 campsites have been awarded 5 stars by the ADAC: Camping- und Ferienpark Wulfener Hals, Inselcamp Fehmarn, Camping Miramar and Camping Strukkamphuk.
According to some strict criteria imposed by the ADAC it was possible to achieve this goal and obtain recognition.

The cycle paths
Thies Rätzke photo

Lots of sunshine, a mild climate and a flat, even complex, Fehmarn is a great destination for cyclists.
About 300 kilometers of signposted cycle paths stretch across the island and the coast. Natural beaches, inland lakes and cliffs alternate along the 78 kilometers of coastline. Inland from the island, the road leads through villages, meadows and fields, which glow a bright yellow during the rapeseed flowering season in spring.
You are all invited to purchase a special tour map with five designated routes at the tourist information office. You can choose for example the church tour, the harbor tour or the Sundbrückentour.
Depending on the direction of the wind and your conditions, you can tackle the tours left or right and start it at any time. The so-called Ostküstenpromenade between Staberdorf and Klausdorf is one of the most scenic cycle paths in Fehmarn: the cycle path runs with an unobstructed view of the Baltic Sea directly above the steep coast.
The marked routes of the “Baltic Sea Cycle Path” and the Mönchsweg are also very popular. For a break we recommend the five tourist marinas, as well as a visit to one of the five “farm cafes”, which are partly connected to a farm shop. Beautiful views are provided by the so-called camp sofas, curved wooden benches, found in many places on the island.
On the steep coast between Katharinenhof and Staberdorf east of Fehmarn, the camp sofa can also be rotated 360 degrees. A popular destination for cyclists is Fehmarn’s highest lighthouse “Flugge”. The 162 steps lead to a 370 ° view at 37 meters. Nearby you will find the “NABU Wasservogelreservat Wallnau”, a reserve for water birds. Migratory species of sea birds can be observed from the observation huts.
A large network of “charging stations” is available for e-bikes.
On the island assistance is provided by two local bike rental shops offering first aid and support for any breakdowns.

Nature reserves and wildlife

Thanks to their rich food offer and their favorable location, the four nature reserves Grüner Brink, Wallnau, Krummsteert and Northern Lakeland are an attraction for migratory birds on Fehmarn.
Tens of thousands of them travel to these places every year on their journey between breeding grounds and their winter “homes”, using the German island – depending on the season and direction of flight – as a bridge to the north. or the south. The best place for bird watching is at the NABU Wallnau waterfowl reserve, one of the most ecologically valuable areas in northern Germany. Unnoticed by the birds you can enjoy spectacular views from specially built observation huts in these areas. It is possible to observe very rare bird species from a ten meter high observation tower.
It is worth visiting between mid-April and mid-May, when migratory birds show up during courtship. Detailed information on bird species and flight routes is provided at the fairground.
Especially for children, the tactile path exhibition is an experience. Barefoot and blindfolded, they can make their way through cones and spruce woods, touch “things” in hidden places and smell plants like lavender and rosemary. Waterfowl reserve employees guide people through the gardens and bistro which offers delicious organic food.

Also accessible to visitors is the 134-hectare Grüner Brink on the north coast of Fehmarn. The 2.5 kilometer long and up to 180 meter wide strip of land between the dam and the Baltic Sea that was formed by the construction of the dam in 1872 and has been under conservation since 1938.
The altered flow conditions have led to this ‘area, where small inland lakes were formed which subsequently dried up. Nowadays, only the salty waters of the Baltic Sea flow into these small inland lakes during heavy floods. In one year there are up to 170 bird species around the “Grüner Brink”. Southwest of “Grüner Brink” you will find the largest nature reserve of Fehmarn, which at 751 hectares is the largest in East Holstein.

Image by Peter Krötz from Pixabay



Northern Lakeland has only been protected since 29 August 2014, making it the youngest of the island’s four protected areas. It mainly comprises coastal stretches and the adjacent flat areas with widely used lakes, reed beds, salt marshes and meadows.
Many endangered animal and plant species such as the crucified toad, bittern, little tern, common tern, coastal sea kale, beach pout and thistle are native to this area.
There are several routes through the nature reserve, for example, east of Markelsdorfer Huk (northwestern Fehmarn) to reach nearby campsites with restaurants and bathing areas outside the nature reserve.
There is another observation platform next to the Markelsdorfer Huk.

The Krummsteert is located on the southwestern tip of the island of Fehmarn. It is part of the Krummsteert – Sulsdorfer Wiek nature reserve, which covers approximately 395 hectares and has existed since 1980. It is divided into four different ecosystems: the Krummsteert, the Sulsdorfer Wiek, an ancient sea bay located behind the dam, the Ramskamp with salt flats and brackish ponds as well as aquatic areas of the Baltic Sea. From the 37-meter-high Flügge lighthouse visitor platform, the view opens up over the entire Nehrungshaken. The path from Orth to the lighthouse passes the Sulsdorfer Wiek, the Ramskamp reed bed and the Flügger ponds.
The factsheets provide information on breeding and migratory birds. Particularly protected is the tiny islet of Kolhof located in Burger Lake (Burgtiefe), which also serves as a breeding ground for numerous birds in the southern part of Fehmarn.


Beaches
Image by Stephan Becker from Pixabay

The beaches of Burgtiefe and Wulfener Hals are the southernmost and with the whitest sand on the island. In this stretch the coast is particularly flat with the best conditions for building sand castles or looking for shells.
The same goes for Grüner Brink in the north of Fehmarn.
In Bojendorf there is a full service available for renting beach chairs, a kiosk and sports and leisure facilities. The unique location of the Burgtiefe marina is a popular starting point for trips on the Baltic Sea. A few steps away is the south beach of fine sand, considered the tourist center of the island of Fehmarn. There is also the FehMare Adventure Wave Pool with a wide range of spa services.

More infos about Fehmarn here: https://www.fehmarn.de/

The Earth Day and the new video on the landscape created by the volcano of La Palma after the eruption

For the fifth consecutive year Earth Day is celebrated with careful audiovisual production that includes the wonderful and unique landscapes of the eight Canary Islands, with a special role dedicated to the new space created by the eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano on La Palma. This video will try to reach 5.2 million people, in particular Internet users who have a particular interest in environmental issues and nature tourism.

Earth Day, which is celebrated every 22 April, has in recent years become the perfect excuse to highlight the natural spaces of the Canary Islands which are now enriched by the newborn volcanic environment of La Palma. This new landscape is called to become a major tourist attraction that will serve to promote the economic recovery of Isla Bonita.
The celebration of this event consolidates the fact that the Islas Canarias brand has become a standard-bearer for the defense of the territory and the uniqueness of the different landscapes offered by the archipelago, great natural attributes of the destination.
With the celebration of Earth Day in recent years, the Canary Islands brand aims to strengthen in the minds of tourists its commitment to defending the territory and the uniqueness of the archipelago’s landscapes.

To achieve greater success in communicating this message, the target audience has been segmented so that the content reaches the Internet users most interested in environmental issues, nature tourism and the discovery of the landscapes of the destinations they visit.
Furthermore, it is hoped that this video will go viral on social networks thanks to the emotional message conveyed by the natural environments, fauna and flora of the eight islands.
This year the video was also made in vertical format to be able to share it on the reels of Instagram and its replica on Facebook.
The piece will be broadcast in ten markets: English, German, French, Spanish, Swedish, Italian, Dutch, Belgian, Irish and Norwegian.

The Wienerwald: the Viennese forest, a UNESCO biosphere reserve

Contrary to what you might think, Vienna has a green lung made up of woods, vineyards and meadows to the west of the city. It extends from the outlying districts of the city to the countryside of Lower Austria. We are talking about the Vienna Woods, one of the 727 UNESCO Biosphere Reserves in the world, but the only one, at least among the European ones, located on the edge of a metropolis. It covers an area of approximately 105,000 hectares and extends over seven of the 23 Viennese municipal districts, and over 51 municipalities in the Lower Austria region.

It is a territory where man and nature coexist and benefit from each other. The intertwining of forests and settlement areas, as well as the contrasts between rural areas and the metropolis, produce special natural conditions and at the same time represent a great challenge. The goal is to protect natural habitats and plant and animal species by creating the conditions for responsible development.
More than 60% of the area is covered by forests, the effect of which on the climate, air and water balance is fundamental for the entire metropolitan area. The Viennese Wood in all seasons is a recreational area much loved by residents, a destination for trips and excursions in all seasons: in spring, when primroses appear and the forest smells of wild garlic; in summer, when it becomes an oasis of coolness, where you can find refuge from the heat of the city; in autumn, when the foliage transforms the green of the leaves into yellow and red. But even in winter, with bare trees, its landscapes have an irresistible charm.

Wienerwald
Image by Katharina Jankele from Pixabay

In addition to forests, meadows and vineyards characterize the landscape. There are 33 forest associations and 23 open grasslands, in which very specific animals and plants live. In dry meadows, for example, pulsatilla and yellow hadonide can be found. Siberian iris and marsh gentian grow in wet meadows.
With a variety of 70 plant species and 560 animal species per hectare, lean lawns not only display unexpected richness, but are also particularly beautiful thanks to showy blooms.
Then there are small peat bog meadows, now rarefied, habitat of orchids, amphibians, dragonflies, cicadas and many other insects. In the eyes of hikers and nature lovers, the colorful meadows of the Viennese Wood are the original image of “unspoiled nature”, but all these meadows and pastures exist only thanks to centuries of cultivation by man.
With the disappearance of agricultural use, the meadow would return to the state of forest, through various evolutionary stages.
Finally there are the vineyards: the wine-growing landscapes have motivated the designation of the Wienerwald as a UNESCO biosphere reserve.
On the sunny slopes of the Viennese Wood, viticulture draws the landscape, together with fruit trees, hedges, and stone walls, the latter also surprising natural habitats.

Fraser Island: Australia’s dream island

Fraser island is the largest sand island in the world.
Spanning 184,000 hectares, 123 kilometers long and 22 kilometers wide at its widest point, Fraser Island is a typical dream island with rainforest, endless beaches and transparent sea where we would all like to be shipwrecked and live forever.

History and legends of the island

The traditional name of the Butchulla people for Fraser island was K’gari wich means paradise.

According to a legend, Fraser Island was named K’gari in honor of the beautiful spirit who helped Yindingie, messenger of the great god Beeral, to create the earth. As a reward to K’gari for his help, Beeral transformed her into an idyllic island with trees, flowers and lakes. He has put birds, animals and people on the island to keep her company.

It seems that the island had been occupied for at least 5,000 years or more, but only in 1770 did Captain Cook sight the Butchulla people on the east coast, while Matthew Flinders had contact with the people of the island between 1799 and 1802.
In 1991 the island was named a World Heritage Site and today is managed by the Department of the Environment and Heritage through the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.

The shipwrecks of the island

Shipwrecks in Freser Island
Photo by Andreas Dress on Unsplash

It seem that about twenty ships wrecked on Freser island, wich today have become an attraction for tourists.
The most famous is undoubtedly the Maheno, which has been stranded on Fraser’s beaches since 1935.
Built in 1905, the SS Maheno operated a regular route between Sydney and Auckland until it was commissioned as a hospital ship in Europe during the First World War.
On 3 July 1935, at the end of the service, the Maheno left Sydney pulled by a ferry but, after 4 days it ran into a cyclone and, about fifty miles from the coast, disappeared into the sea with 8 men on board.
On July 10, a plane spotted the Maheno stranded on the shores of Fraser Island, with its crew waiting on the beach for the arrival of the Oonah ferry, which revealed itself a couple of days later.
Today the Maheno remains stranded in a state of corrosion on the beaches of the island and, emptied of everything,  it’s one of the great attractions of the island.

The dunes and the sand

Seventy Five Mile Beach, Frase Island
Seventy Five Mile beach, Image by Adobe Stock

Fraser island and its dunes are costantly canging. Each year the dunes move based on wind, humidity and the behavior of plants living on the Australian island.
Fraser Island’s colorful sands lie north of Eli Creek and comprise 72 different colors, mostly reds and yellows.

Seventy-Five Mile Beach (pictured above) is an amazing beach highway where all road rules apply, The speed limit is 80 kilometers per hour and it is necessary to give way to planes that land and take off!

The rainforest

Fraser Island
Image by Matt McLeod from Pixabay

Among the unique characteristics of Fraser there is also that of having a rainforest that grows on a soil that is not very fertile such as sand.
Plants derive their nutrients solely from rain and sand. The sand is covered with mineral compounds such as iron and aluminum oxides.
Near the shore, the air contains the nutrients from the splashes of sea water that are deposited on the sand.
In a mutual relationship, the fungi in the sand make these nutrients available to the plants.
These in turn provide various organic compounds to the mushrooms which, having no chlorophyll, they could not synthesize on their own.

Wildlife

Fraser island is an environment rich in wild animals wich, in their own way, constitute fundamental but fragile elements in the context of the island.
Every slightest change or contamination can damage this wonderful environment and its inhabitants who contribute in an important way to preserve the natural balance of the Australian island.

In Fraser, more than 350 species of birds have been sighted, which come to nest here and find an optimal context in which to feed and find shelter. There are almost 80 species of reptiles, of which about twenty are represented by snakes. From July to November, you may also spot dolphins, dugongs, turtles and humpback whales. If you were not yet satisfied with all this life, know that in Queensland and Fraser lives the second most important population of Brumbies, a breed of wild horses typical of Australia.

Fraser’s vegetation

Fraser Island
Photo by GAWN AUSTRALIA on Unsplash

The list of plant species fount in Fraser is truly impressive.
Suffice it to say that on the island there are at least a thousand species divided into 150 different families. Acacia, banksia, barony, callitris, dianella and eucalyptus are just some of the many species present that will welcome you to this beautiful island.

How to get

Fraser Island ferry
Fraser Island Ferry, Adobe Stock Photo

By car, it takes at least 3 to 4 hours from Brisbane to get there. You have to reach Maryboroug and then Hervey bay. Fraser ferry schedules are on these links.
http://www.fraserislandferry.com.au/
and
https://www.kingfisherbay.com/getting-here/fraser-island-ferry.html

Regular bus services are available from Brisbane to Maryborough and Hervey Bay. From the north, services are guaranteed with Greyhound-Pioneer-McCafferty’s, Premier and Suncoast Pacific Coaches. If you prefer the train, you can consult the timetables on the website of the Queenslandrailtravel.

Qantas Link fly from Brisbane to Hervey Bay (Hervey Bay Airport)

What to do and where to stay

Fraser island
Photo by Nick Dunn on Unsplash

If all this beauty ever bores you (I have strong doubts about it), on the island there are many organized activities such as while watching or 4WD tours for example, plus other activities that the two resorts on the island will do their best to make even more your days in this paradise are wonderful. It goes without saying that this is a perfect place for a wedding or honeymoon.

Da Lat: the city of flowers

Da Lat is somewhat hidden in the highlands of Vietnam in the south of the country. With its colorful hills, meadows full of flowers, trees full of blooms, it attracts all kinds of tourists, from families through couples to lovers of wellness and nature or, why not, of photography.

From lat it was once a holiday center for the French who have left indelible marks on the architecture of this city.
The nerve center of the Vietnamese city is the lake, but don’t forget to visit the hills, full of colors and natural wonders.

Pongour,Waterfall.,Da,Lat,,Vietnam
Pongour waterfall, Shutterstock photo

As mentioned above, the focal point of Da Lat is undoubtedly the Xuân Hương lake where you can find the market with stalls full of fresh flowers, hotels and local meats and, also in the area, the charming train station of the city. The natural beauty that you absolutely cannot miss are the waterfalls in the area: Pongour and the Elephant for example are about fifty kilometers from Da Lat and offer incredible scenery, as well as the possibility of practicing sports such as canoeing, hiking and mountain biking.

The city of eternal spring

Lake of Da Lat
Image by Phúc Mã from Pixabay

The temperate climate of Da Lat is the strong point of this area. Do not forget, however, to bring some heavier clothes in the winter months and that between April and November it could rain. The month of May is perhaps the best to visit Da Lat and its natural wonders.

Ibiza: a journey through beaches, markets, gastronomy and nature

Ibiza is well suited to all types of travelers. Whether you are a family, a couple, a group of friends or maybe sportsmen looking for a particular environment, in Ibiza you will find an island full of unique emotions and suggestions.
With its 572 km² of total area, Ibiza is easy to explore, as you won’t have to travel too many kilometers from one point to the other on the island. The points of greatest interest are generally about 15 ‘away from each other and thus, you will have all the time to discover the beauties, the beaches and the gastronomy that this Balearic island has to offer.

The pleasures of the island

Kayaking in Ibiza
Kayaking in Ibiza
Image from Promoción Turística de Ibiza

Ibiza enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate that allows you to visit it, taking advantage of a good climate all year round.
With 3000 hours of sunshine per year, very little rainfall, turquoise waters and the possibility of practicing many “sea sports”, Ibiza offers many possibilities and freedom for recreation.
There is certainly no lack of nature, sunsets, the typical scents of the Mediterranean and the opportunity to fully enjoy the beaches of the island.


The nature

Posidonia Oceanica
Posidonia Oceanica
Underwater sea, Mediterranean, Balearic Islands, Ibiza, Spain

40% of the island is covered with pine and juniper forests divided into 1800 different species.
The flora, of the Mediterranean type, has a variety of 940 different species. 43% of Ibiza’s land area is protected, of which around 18% is divided into eight natural areas.
If that wasn’t enough, keep in mind that 75.4% of the island’s coastline is protected. Just to name a few, make a note of the Marine Reserve of the north-east coast of Ibiza-Tagomago, the Natural Reserves of Es Vedrà, Es Vedranell and the islets to the west.
Although the wetlands of the island attract many species of birds, the characteristic animal of Ibiza remains the pythous lizard, easy to spot on the walls or in the paths.

Ibizan podenco
Podenco
Promoción turistica de Ibiza
Image by Vincent Marí

Another characteristic animal of the island is the Ibizan podenco, a particular breed of native dog of Egyptian origin that seems to have brought the Carthaginians in 654 AD, when they founded the city of Ibiza.
It is an elegant, agile, strong breed with a very supple walk.

According to UNESCO, Ibiza is a privileged environment for the conservation of Posidonia Oceanica, a World Heritage Site as well as an aquatic and endemic plant of the Mediterranean.
These aquatic plants are not only responsible for the purity of sea water but significantly contribute to reducing the erosion of marine coasts. Posidonia Oceanica is also a form of nourishment for various marine species and, for all these reasons, it is essential that it be preserved, avoiding damage or loss over the years.

Sea Salines, Ibiza
Sea Salines
Image by Vincent Marí

Sea Salines has become a natural park since 2001. With an area of 3000 land hectares and 13,000 sea hectares, the natural park of Ibiza is an environmental wealth and protected reserve for 210 species of birds, among which flamingos, Himantopus and the Balearic Shearwater stand out.
The park, thanks to its salt pans, is able to produce 50,000 tons of salt every year.


The UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Phoenician city, sa Caleta, Ibiza
Phoenician city, sa Caleta, Ibiza
Image Consell d’Eivissa

In addition to the aforementioned Posidonia Oceanica, Ibiza can avail itself of UNESCO heritage sites of all respect and historical importance. In 1999, UNESCO declared the walls of Dalt Vila a World Heritage Site, as the best-preserved coastal fortress in the whole of the Mediterranean.
The same goes for the remains of the Phoenician city of sa Caleta and the necropolis of Puig de Molins, perfectly preserved over time.

The Renaissance walls that “envelop” the ancient city with the Cathedral and the Almudaina Castle on top, are the most important monuments of Ibiza.
Dalt Vila is made up of narrow labyrinthine streets, calli and squares that give a sense of serenity completely opposite to that of the port, the bay and the commercial area of the barrios of la Marina and Sa Penya.

According to UNESCO, the remains of the Phoenician city of Sa Caleta and the Phoenician-Punic necropolis are a very important testimony of the life, culture and urbanization of the Phoenician and Carthaginian cultures.

The underwater grasslands of Posidonia oceanica represent a natural wealth both for Ibiza and for the global marine biodiversity. The so-called “lungs of the sea” present in the waters of the island are among the best preserved in the Mediterranean and, as such, they must remain.

Shopping and markets

Artisania market, Ibiza
Mercado artisania, Ibiza
Image by Jon Izeta

Shopping in Ibiza could be just as rewarding as doing it in a big city: from major international brands to small and young designers, passing through local crafts, it will be possible to find and discover everything on the island.
Dalt Vila, the barrio de La Marina, Avenida Bartolomé Roselló and Marina Botafoch are just some of the areas where you can go shopping for “depth”. Letting yourself be carried away by the colorful shop in the middle of a street is certainly the best thing to do. You can come in and find many surprises all of a sudden.

Sant’Eulària, Sant Josep, Sant Antoni and Sant Joan contain a multitude of excellent commercial boutiques inspired by local products where you can find authentic treasures.
The markets of Las Dalias and Punta Arabí are absolutely worth a visit. Las Dalias opens all year round on Saturdays, while in summer it also has a night “version”; unique.
Punta Arabí for 25 years every Wednesday with about 400 stalls.

But if you love stalls and markets, you cannot miss the local handicraft stalls at the Port of Ibiza, Figueretes, Sant’Eulària, Sant Antoni, Sant Joan, San Miquel or the works of the potters of San Rafael.

Local gastronomy

Squid fried
Frita de calamar
Image by Vincent Marí

The gastronomy of Ibiza is mainly based on the Mediterranean trilogy, consisting of wheat, wine and olive oil. The sea and the land so generous have always given possibilities and multitudes of traditional recipes, elaborated according to the season and the climatic conditions of the island.

Flaó
Flaó
Image by Vincent Marí
Ibiza wine
Vino de Ibiza
Image by Vincent Marí

The food markets


The traditions of the island

Ball Pagés: Traditional Ibiza dance
Ball pagés
Image San Joan de Labritja

Ibiza boasts a rich heritage of traditions that allow anyone who visits it to immerse themselves even more in the heart of the island. The island’s countryside has been self-sufficient for generations thanks to the spirit of self-adaptation and the ability of the people of Ibiza to make the most of nature’s resources.
On the island you will find many examples of traditional architecture that, over the years, have allowed the Balearic island to get the nickname of Isla Blanca. Just get lost in the back streets to admire how many white houses have been converted into restaurants or to discover some very white building submerged in nature.

Rural architecture in Ibiza
Rural architecture, Ibiza
Image by Vincent Marí

Ball pagès, the traditional Ibiza dance, stands out for being a unique folkloric representation in the Mediterranean. With centuries of antiquity and an uncertain origin, this ancient courtship dance takes place in all the popular festivals of the island and in the weekly performances scheduled during the summer tourist season.

Playing sports in Ibiza

By bike in Ibiza
By bike in Ibiza
Image by Jon Izeta

Finding a sport that suits you in Ibiza shouldn’t be difficult. After eating, shopping, sunbathing on the beach and maybe staying late at night, a little healthy sport would be good for anyone. A lot of greenery lends itself well to sports such as golf, horse riding, walking, running or cycling, while the sea and the beaches offer the canonical multitude of water sports such as kayaking, windsurfing, kitesurfing and much more.

It is almost superfluous to remember that Ibiza is also full of many sporting events throughout the year: marathon, half marathon, regattas, cycle tour, trial and much more. For professional and non-professional sportsmen, but also for all fans, in Ibiza there are always interesting events to follow.


What to do and see in Ibiza

Dalt Vila

Plaza de Vila, Ibiza
Plaza de Vila
Image by Aurelio Martinelli

All months are perfect for visiting the fortress district of Ibiza, although it is during the afternoons and summer evenings that you will find more “life” thanks to the restaurants open around the squares of Vila, Sa Carrossa and del Sol.
A walk to the cathedral and the castle will make you discover medieval palaces, secluded squares, art galleries and beautiful corners in the purest Mediterranean style.

The walls and ramparts: declared a World Heritage Site in 1999, the Renaissance citadel of Ibiza is the best preserved in the Mediterranean. It was built during the second half of the 16th century following the plan promoted by the monarchs Carlos I and Felipe II to modernize the military infrastructure of the strategic coastal territories of the Spanish Crown with the aim of improving the defense against attacks by the Ottoman Empire and others enemies of the time.
The complex, which was originally only accessed from the Portal de Ses Taules and the Portal Nou, is made up of seven bastions, of which the two on the western side are museumized: Sant Jaume and Sant Pere.
From the rest of the ramparts you can admire magnificent views of the city, the beaches of Ses Figueretes, Platja d’en Bossa, Es Cavallet and the nearby island of Formentera.

Museums:

  • Necropolis of Puig des Molins
  • Ibiza Museum of Contemporary Art(MACE)
  • Puget Museum
  • Cathedral and Diocesan Museum

The historic districts outside the walls: La Marina and Sa Penya maintain the port character of Mediterranean cities, with simple houses with white facades and a marked seafaring air. Located near the port, the streets of these neighborhoods are full of entertainment during the summer tourist season thanks to their boutiques, shops, bars, restaurants. Ice cream parlors and cafes, many with views of the marina and the luxurious boats that dock there. The Parque and Vara de Rey squares, with their remarkable colonial-style buildings, are worth a stop during a stroll through the center of Ibiza.

La Marina in te ebvening, Ibiza
La Marina
Image by Aurelio Martinelli
From Promoción Turística de Ibiza

7 things to do in Ibiza

  1. Go shopping in La Marina, Dalt Vila or Eixample, where Adlib fashion boutiques, stalls, traditional shops, national and international brands, art galleries, multi-brand shops await you.
  2. Take the water taxi that connects the district of La Marina with the promenade and the beach of Talamanca.
  3. See how the artisans work their pieces in the Sa Pedrera craft market, open to the public on Fridays.
  4. Enjoy the lively nightlife of the city, especially that of Dalt Vila, La Marina, the port, the promenade and Ses Figueretes.
  5. Walk along the walls from bastion to bastion, paying attention to its informative panels and museum spaces.
  6. Join the theatrical guided tours organized by the Municipality of Ibiza.
  7. Buy sweets in the cloistered convent of Sant Cristòfol, popularly known as Ses Monges Tancades (the closed nuns), and other Ibizan gastronomic products in the Mercat Nou and Mercat Vell markets.

Beaches

Talamanca, Ibiza
Talamanca, Ibiza
Image from Promoción Turística de Ibiza

The capital has accessible beaches where you can enjoy swimming and water sports. North of the town hall, in the bay of Talamanca, there is the 900-meter-long beach of the same name, with various services and catering. Closer to the historic center is the beach of Ses Figueretes, along which the district of the same name extends and a multitude of accommodation, restaurants, shops, cafes, bars and pubs. Following on from Ses Figueretes, there is Platja d’en Bossa, a long sandy beach shared by the municipalities of Ibiza and San Sant Josep which has one of the most developed tourist offers on the island.


8 things to do in Sant’Eulària

Las Dalias Market
Las Dalias market
Image from Promoción Turística de Ibiza
  1. Reach the islet of Tagomago by kayak or explore the stretches between Pou des Lleó and Canal d’en Martí and between Cala Llonga and Santa Eulària.
  2. Enjoy the rural landscape of Santa Gertrudis on horseback.
  3. Follow the circular trekking paths of the town hall, such as the one that goes up to the Torre d’en Vall.
  4. Surfing in Cala Martina and Cala Pada, getting started in the world of sailing on the beach of Santa Eulària and diving in Cala Llenya, Cala Mestella or Pou des Lle.
  5. Buy Ibizan-style souvenirs at the hippy markets of Las Dalias and Punta Arabí and visit the artisan market of Santa Gertrudis.
  6. Approach Sant Carles, Cala Nova and the hippy market of Las Dalias aboard a tourist train.
  7. Enjoy a trip along the east coast on board the ferry that connects the port of Ibiza with the tourist centers of Es Canar, Santa Eulària and Cala Llonga.
  8. Set foot on eleven shores in a single day following the Route of the Beaches, a circular route for mountain biking that passes through Cala Nova, Cala Llenya, Cala Mestella, Cala Boix, Es Figueral and S’Aigua Blanca, among other beaches.



The beaches of Sant’Eulària

Cala nova, Ibiza
Cala Nova
Image from Promoción Turística de Ibiza

Sandy beaches, steep cliffs rising from the coast, wild coves and a generous number of islets form the beautiful littoral landscape of Santa Eulària. Along its 46 kilometers, there are frequent shores of calm waters suitable for bathing children and with a wide range of services, such as Cala Llonga, Cala Pada, Cala Martina, Es Niu Blau, S’Argamassa, Es Canar, Platja des Riu de Santa Eulària and the urban beach of Santa Eulària, the first of the Balearic Islands to declare itself a “smoke-free beach” where smoking is not allowed.
The shores best known for their photogenic beauty are S’Aigua Blanca and Es Figueral – both overlooking the islet of Tagomago-, Cala Nova, Cala Llenya and Cala Boix – Ibiza’s only dark sand beach-, while the most intimate coves are Cala Mestella, Pou des Lleó, S’Estanyol and Cala Olivera.


What to do in San Josep

Es vedrà, Ibiza
Es vedrà, Ibiza
Image by Jamie Turek from Pixabay

The village of Sant Josep is quiet and surrounded by cultivated fields. Its small urban core has grown around its church and street. The temple was built in 1730 following the characteristics of popular Ibizan architecture and is the only church on the island with a sundial on the facade. You can have a coffee in the charming little square located in front of the temple, browse its shops and galleries and enjoy many local dishes in its many restaurants. In addition, fans of cinema and theater will find a rich program at the Can Jeron Culture Center.

The Phoenician settlement of Sa Caleta is located a few meters from the Es Bol Nou beach. This deposit is one of the four sites in Ibiza declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Its origin as a settlement dates back to the 8th century BC. and you can see the remains of the urban layout and two ovens.

7 things to do in San Josep

  1. Visit the Ses Salines Interpretation Center near the church of Sant Francesc. Inside, information is provided on the ecological importance of the salt ponds, the dune strings, the Posidonia oceanica meadows and the cliffs of the natural park and on the numerous marine and terrestrial species that host these habitats, such as the pitiusa lizard (Podarcis pityusensis ), the seahorse (Hippocampus ramulosus), the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), the flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber), the Balearic shearwater (Puffinus mauretanicus) or the stilt (Himantopus himantopus).
  2. Stroll along the coast in search of the surveillance towers in the south and west of Ibiza: Es Carregador or Sa Sal Rossa, Ses Portes, Es Savinar and En Rovira.
  3. See the Ibiza sunset from the various bars and cafes located in Portmany bay or from the shores of Cala Tarida, Port des Torrent or Platges de Comte.
  4. Practice numerous water activities in the bay of Portmany, and in the nearby tourist centers of Cala de Bou and Platja Pinet.
  5. Plan an excursion to discover the ecological and landscape values of the Natural Reserves of Es Vedrà, Es Vedranell and the western islets.
  6. Go to the Sant Josep market on Saturdays to look for local agricultural products (open during the summer tourist season) or take part in the colorful atmosphere of the Sant Jordi second-hand market (all year round).
  7. Climb to the top of Sa Talaia, the highest mountain in Ibiza with a height of 475 meters. It is one of the most attractive trips for hikers and cyclists in the municipality, as from the top you can enjoy a wonderful view over a large part of the island.

The beaches of San Josep

Platges de Comte
Platges de Comte
Image by Vincent Marí

Sant Josep has more than 20 beaches and coves for all tastes and needs, including Platja d’en Bossa, the longest sandy beach in Ibiza and one of the busiest thanks to the wide range of hotels, restaurants, clubs , pubs and water and nautical businesses.
The wild beaches of Ses Salines, Cala Jondal, Cala Bassa, the set of coves that make up Platges de Comte and Cala d’Hort stand out for their beauty and popularity, the best viewpoint on the famous islet of Es Vedrà. Other unique shores are Es Cavallet – of nudist tradition -, Cala Codolar, Es Bol Nou, Cala Carbó, Cala Molí or the beaches of Cala Vedella, Cala Tarida and Port des Torrent, with a family atmosphere.

What to do and see in Sant Antoni

Puesta de sol Sant Antoni
Puesta de sol Sant Antoni
Image by Menchu Redondo

The beauty of its bay, the spectacular sunsets with the Ponente islets in the background and a practically unchanged rural landscape are three of the great attractions of Sant Antoni, a destination open to all travelers that always surprises, whether near the sea or inland.

Sunset in Ses Variades: the stretch of the promenade between Caló des Moro and the breakwater is known as Ses Variades and during the summer it becomes one of the most visited places on the island thanks to the bars and cafes that play music at sunset, often offered by famous DJs.
Outside the summer tourist season, the promenade allows you to enjoy beautiful sunsets in a peaceful environment.

Route of the churches: the temple of Sant Antoni, whose origin dates back to the 14th century, is an excellent example of a Pythian church-fortress that still has its defensive tower and the starting point of this itinerary. Inland, the silhouettes of the small church of Santa Agnès, whose portico is located near the ancient main entrance, and the temple of Sant Mateu, crowned by a simple bell gable, give a singular beauty to the rural landscape of both. valleys.
For its part, a visit to the church of Sant Rafel, built in the late eighteenth century, offers an excellent view of the city of Ibiza and a curvilinear bell tower that gives lightness to the austere facade.

Almond blossom
Almond blossom
Image from Promoción Turística de Ibiza

Santa Agnès and the almond trees: this small hamlet is located in the Pla de Corona valley, one of the most peaceful places in Ibiza. The best time to visit is between January and February, when its hundreds of almond trees bloom.

The vineyards of Sant Mateu: the north of the municipality is traditionally linked to wine production and currently hosts the plants of two wineries on the island that produce wines with I.G.P. Ibiza, Vino de la Tierra | Vi de la Terra.

5 things to do in Sant Antoni

  1. Practicing water and nautical sports offered in the bay: diving, sailing, kitesurfing, paddle surfing, water skiing, parasailing, jet skis, kayaking, fishing …
  2. Enjoy a boat trip to admire the beauty of the cliffs of Ses Balandres and Cala d’Albarca, as well as the Natural Reserves of Es Vedrà, Es Vedranell and the islets to the west.
  3. Walk the coastal path that connects Sant Antoni to Cala Salada, go cycling in the area known as Es Broll, stroll through the Pla de Corona until you reach the cliff overlooking the islets of Ses Margalides
  4. Buy local products in the Forada Market (Saturday), at the Sant Antoni Agricultural Market (Friday) or at the Sant Rafel Handicraft Market (Thursday, from July to September).
  5. Visit a winery to taste the wines of the island.

The beaches of Sant Antoni

Cala Gració
Cala Gració

Sant Antoni is home to coves and beaches ideal for children who also stand out for the beauty of the environment or its views. Within the urban core of Sant Antoni there are the beaches of Es Puetó, S’Arenal and Caló des Moro, which are added to the beaches of the bay that administratively belong to Sant Josep.
A few minutes by car or bus from the town are Cala Gració and Cala Gracioneta, two coves surrounded by pine trees, separated by a small promontory; the turquoise waters of the photogenic coastline formed by Cala Salada and Cala Saladeta – one of the most photographed in Ibiza – and the stone terraces of Punta Galera, an ancient stone quarry that has become a favorite place for nudist practitioners.

What to do and see in Sant Joan

Sant Miquel church
Sant Miquel church
Image by Vincent Marí

Sant Joan and its church: the town that gives its name to the town hall is a quiet and charming place, whose few houses are located along the road and around the church dedicated to an John the Baptist. The temple, completed in 1770, is structured around a single rectangular nave with a ribbed vault and seven side chapels. Other hallmarks of the temple are its bell tower, built in the 19th century, and its portico with two arches. On Sundays, the square in front of the church becomes a meeting point for visitors who go to the artisan and gastronomic market.

6 things to do in Sant Joan

  1. Admire the beauty of the cliffs of northern Ibiza aboard the excursion boats that depart from Portinatx.
  2. Explore the surroundings of the beaches of Portinatx, Port de Sant Miquel and Cala de Sant Vicent on a paddle surf board or on a pedal boat.
  3. Follow the itinerary that leads to Punta des Moscarter and the homonymous lighthouse, the highest in the Balearic Islands; or walk down to the remote virgin cove of Es Portitxol, on the coast of Sant Miquel.
  4. Admire the fabulous views from the top of the Torre des Molar, located a few kilometers from the Port de Sant Miquel and where you arrive after a trek.
  5. Buy handicrafts and agricultural products from the north of Ibiza at the Sant Joan Sunday market.
  6. Get on the tourist train that leaves from Portinatx and discover some of the most beautiful corners of the north of the island.

The beaches of San Joan

Cala de Sant Vicent
Cala de Sant Vicent
Images from Promoción Turística de Ibiza

The north coast is home to coves for all tastes, from those with all services to those hidden under the cliffs, suitable for those who want to get away from the hustle and bustle or practice nudism. The beaches of Port de Sant Miquel, Cala de Sant Vicent, S’Arenal Gran, S’Arenal Petit and Port de Portinatx have equipment, restaurants, shops and water activity rentals, making them a very suitable choice for families.
Benirràs is also very popular, thanks to its hippy environment, its sunsets and the uniqueness of the landscape of its fishermen’s cottages with the islet of Cap Bernat. The remaining coves of Sant Joan are perfect for those who do not need services or for those who simply want a kiosk close at hand to be able to rent sunbeds and umbrellas: Cala de Xarraca, Cala des Xuclar, Cala d’en Serra, S’Illot des Renclí, Es Pas de s’Illa and Caló des Moltons.



Scilly: the magical English islands

The Isles of Scilly lie approximately 45 kilometers off the Cornish coast and enjoy the mildest climate in the UK. There are 140 mainly uninhabited islands and islets and 2,200 inhabitants spread over five islands: 1,800 live on the largest island, St. Mary’s; about 110 on Tresco and St. Martin’s, and fewer than 100 inhabitants permanently reside in Bryher and Sant’Agnese. Despite this, these five islands are all connected to each other, they can be reached with trips of a few minutes and, above all, every year on the archipelago, around 100,000 tourists arrive from Cornwall or with cruise ships that pass by here to admire the sea. crystal clear, beaches and the unspoiled natural beauty of the Isles of Scilly.

The nature

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Regardless of which island you choose for your stay, here the possibility to move and appreciate nature is really wide. The islands are many and very close to each other, which gives the opportunity to move easily while admiring all the beauties of nature. Depending on the time of year, you may encounter dolphins, puffins, cormorants, sea magpies and many other seabirds and maybe some Atlantic gray seals if you’re lucky enough.

Local products

On the Isles of Scilly every local product is truly “local” and made on the spot. In this small community, the products of the island are in abundance. On almost all the islands you can meet local farmers, fishermen or perhaps bakers, brewers, winemakers and more.

  • Island fish
    The Pender family has been fishing off Bryher for hundreds of years, supplying quality fresh lobster, crab, fish and shellfish to the Isles of Scilly.
  • Salakee duck
    A small St. Mary’s company raises small batches to ensure the highest welfare possible for the ducks.
  • Veronica Farm
    Family-run farm that uses local ingredients including St Agnes milk, butter and clotted cream, to produce the ultimate delicious, buttery vanilla fondant, all done by hand in the farmhouse kitchen
  • Hillside Farm
    Five acres of organic farm, growing fruit and vegetables alongside Devon cattle for beef, grass-fed year-round for tasty, eco-friendly beef.
    Sold at the farm gates
  • Troytown Farm
    Considered to be the smallest dairy in the UK A farm with 9 dairy cows, Troytown produces and sells milk, cream, yogurt and ice cream.
  • Westward Farm
    A small family farm in St. Agnes, They grow botanicals for their distillery by making premium gins (plus apple juice and cider) and a range of soaps that use essential oils.

How to get to Scilly

Getting to the Scilly is pretty straightforward and there are three options available: Airplane, ship, but also helicopter, should you want to try something different for your trip.
You can consult this link where you can choose one of the three travel options and search for all the information or go to the site dedicated to helicopter travel where you can receive information about it and book, if desired, a comfortable day trip.

9 good reasons to visit and fall in love with the Greek islands

I know it. The Greek islands do not need many introductions around the world, because their good reputation is so recognized that it should be enough to attract tourists for the next 1000 years. However, I find it fascinating to tell the beauty of this part of the world, trying to “summarize” in a few points what really attracts so many people to these parts. At least from what a simple traveler like me can see …

1. The friendliness, the welcome and the Greek people

Skiathos… Photo by Nick Karvounis on Unsplash

The Greeks make hospitality and kindness a way of life. You ask for information in English and they answer in your language. Ask 500 questions and they (almost) never lose patience, keeping calm and smiling. Tourists and travelers in Greece are considered a treasure and are treated as such. Contrary to what one might think, on the Greek islands there are essential services that work excellently: from car rentals to emergency services, everything works perfectly to ensure that those who visit the island have an optimal stay. I saw firefighters putting out fires and gardeners working early in the morning in the green spaces of hotels and tourist resorts. The Greeks you know around are always available and a smile corresponds to a smile.

2. The excellent Greek cuisine

Image by Claire05 from Pixabay

Greece boasts a culinary tradition that is nothing short of excellent. As in the whole Mediterranean area you will find fresh dishes, tasty products, excellent olive oil and even good wine.
A simple Greek salad is a delicious rich and tasty dish ideal to satisfy anyone on a hot summer day on some Greek islet. Trying any freshly caught fish from the sea is still the best way (in my opinion) to approach the delights of the island you are visiting.
There are restaurateurs who let guests in near the kitchen to choose the fish that is still fresh. Here you will have the possibility to choose the type of cooking and the side dishes.
… and while you wait outside with a few slices of pita (soft and tasty Greek bread), the chefs prepare sublime dishes for you.
There is nothing better than relaxing in a Greek restaurant overlooking the sea while sipping good wine or a cold beer…
Don’t forget Ouzo, the typical liqueur also served with ice cubes. Personally, I also love Greek coffee, but beware of the slightly “dusty” bottom. It’s not like espresso that you can throw down in an instant and run away…
Greek coffee is to be drunk calmly…sitting down…

3. The transparent sea

Paxos… Image by conolan from Pixabay

Whether you prefer the pebble beach or the fine sand one, on the Greek islands you will always find a blue and transparent sea to welcome you.
I remember The intense blue of Platis Gialos in Lipsi welcome me after a long walk under the June sun. But also the transparency of the waters on more “touristy” islands and crowded beaches such as Tsampika beach in Rhodes, in the scorching July 2021.
However, I think it is also a question of “tourist presence”. The most beautiful and cleanest beaches are always those a little off the beaten path. It depends on what you are looking for…
Greece has many beaches without any service or tourist that are real terrestrial paradises. Seek and you will find.

4. Greek history and monuments

Lindos Acropolis…Image by 11333328 from Pixabay

The history of Greece has very ancient origins, so much so that Greek art and culture are defined as the “cradle of Western civilization”.
Visiting the Greek islands does not only mean spending whole days by the sea sunbathing or swimming in the sea (no one forbids you to do it of course!) But also having the opportunity to explore many buildings that belonged to the past and archaeological sites that nowhere else of the world you will find so preserved.
Touching and admiring amphitheaters, immense columns of temples with sensational views of the sea will give you an idea of what Greece and its islands were in history and how civilization has evolved over the centuries.

5. Nature and animals

Kastelorizo…sea turtle

Despite the many tourists, the Greek islands still preserve areas where uncontaminated nature holds up very well and some animals live in absolute freedom. You will immediately notice the imposing presence of cats all over the islands that go in search of food among the tables of the restaurants. They are not annoying. Just a little hungry.
Donkeys are among the most common animals in Greece and are used both for carrying things and for attracting tourists. If you love to walk and look for unusual places off the beaten track, you will find small outdoor stalls by the sea where they stay and return after a few short morning outings.
Goats are everywhere! you will find them day and night climbing on the most inaccessible mountains and on the paths to reach the beaches. Be careful if you rent a car! They are often on small roads that lead to the sea. But they just observe the strange individuals moving around in as many strange tin boxes: the tourists in their rental cars.

Lindos: goats grazing at dawn

A good time to see Greek goats running and jumping in total freedom is dawn. Early in the morning the Greek shepherds take the goats to pasture and leave them free to roam around the small villages. Tourists are still sleeping and it is a sight to see these animals running freely. If you want to wake up so early (in the summer the sun rises between 5.30 and 6.15 in the morning), you can admire beautiful breathtaking views.

The lucky ones also have the pleasure of admiring and photographing some sea turtles swimming in the seas of the Greek islands. They are very strong and very resistant animals that approach the harbors of the islands in search of some fish and in search of food. They give a sense of life and constant presence of nature as well as joy. In kastelorizo there are five or six who have been returning and living around the island for years. An inhabitant of the island told me how their presence was constant over time despite the tourists and boats present in the small port.

Not least is the vegetation present on the Greek islands. Don’t be surprised if in the gardens of the houses or around the island you are visiting you come across some strange flower or tree from time to time. The spontaneous variety of the Mediterranean in this area is truly incredible
f you want to learn more and know more, consult this article on our partner site dedicated to the flowers of the Greek islands.

6. Colors

white signage beside purple bougainvillea beside body of water
Photo by Gotta Be Worth It on Pexels.com

Imagine the blue of the sea and that of the domes of the Greek churches. Then think of the doors and windows that are also blue.
The blue sky.
The burning sun.
The colors of the flowers: from the purple of the bungavillea to the red of the hibiscus.
Nothing is missing on the Greek islands.
Not even the whiteness of the houses or the perfectly kept paths of hotels and tourist resorts. And if you like shades you can throw yourself on the sunsets: Santorini has the reputation of having the most beautiful ones but I challenge anyone who has been on a Greek island to go home without a photo of a crazy sunset by the sea or on top of some Mountain.

7. The scent of the greek islands

Hydra: girl sniffs flowers… Photo Shutterstock

Explaining a perfume is really difficult but I’ll try.
The scents of the Greek islands are the most unique and devastating (in a positive sense) there is.
From the flowers to the sea, from the sky to the earth, everything smells of something.
Imagine waking up in the morning and already smelling some perfume that comes from the sea, then passing from the coffee, to the scent of the sand, arriving at lunch with the table filled with colors and scents.
The Greek islands are a bit like this: wherever you set foot you will feel something good, different sensations and something pleasant to welcome you.
…and if that’s not enough…

8. The sun

Sun in Santorini… Image by Russell_Yan from Pixabay

Since I started traveling between the Greek islands, I don’t remember cloudy days, much less rain or cold days.
The hot sun constantly floods this part of the world for much of the summer, giving warm weather and beautiful tans to those who come here. Personally I also find the morning shade and the air conditioning out of place. But I think I am a bit strange to love the heat and the scorching Greek sun so much.
After all, no one is perfect.

9. The beaches and the empty streets

My Mini (for rent) on the way to Prasonissi beach

Over time I realized one thing: the earlier you wake up in the morning, the more tranquility and peace you will find on the beach.
Since I started to love photography, I have discovered that better photos are taken at sunrise (and at sunset). Except that at sunset it is full of people while at dawn there is hardly anyone.
In Greece there are beaches that are overcrowded during the day that remain almost empty until 10 in the morning, others out of the way, which are almost always deserted, because there are no umbrellas, bars or restaurants on the beach.
The same goes for the streets.
If you travel between May and mid-July or after August until the end of the season, the problem hardly arises, but there are roads not far from super tourist areas where you will come across more goats than cars.
People have a habit of following the “beaten” and safe roads, ignoring the smaller road signs.
Personally I am attracted by the small signs that read “beach”, “anywhere” or by the small white villages with the streets so narrow that a woman in the ninth month of pregnancy would have difficulty crossing.

But it’s the best way to get lost…and I love getting lost in the Greek islands…

Everything you need to know about Guyana’s majestic Kaieteur Falls

Suddenly the Potaro River drops 226 meters and its mocha color turns to foam and the deafening sound of crashing water. Kaiateur Falls are among the most powerful and tallest single falls in the world if you think that in height they are four times higher than Niagara Falls and twice as high as Victoria Falls.

Kaiteur National Park covers an area of approximately 627 square kilometers that includes rainforests between which passes the Potaro River and the extraordinary Kaieteur Falls.
In the large green context you can find unique species belonging to nature such as the tank bromeliad, the golden frog and the Morpho butterfly (morpho menelaus)

by Erik Zandboer from Shutterstock

The Golden Frog (pictured above) lives within bromeliads (Bromeliaceae) in Kaieteur Falls, Guyana. Kaieteur Falls is the only place in the world where this specific frog lives.

How to visit the falls

There are three main points from which you can admire the Kaiteur Falls: through the hiking trail you can reach the Johnson, Boy Scout and Rainbow viewpoints. The route is about twenty minutes long but the tours are organized so that, between photos and a few stops, the entire tour can last around two hours.

Break and Lookout are two viewpoints closed to the general public which require special permission from the Commission of Protected Areas to be visited. There are a couple of accommodations where it is possible to stay overnight: the Kaieteur Rest House and the Tukeit Rest House but keep in mind that, for both you need to bring bed linen, hammocks and food supplies but, above all, that to stop and sleep it is necessary the approval of the Commission of Protected Areas.

If you are daring enough to want to keep company at the falls for a few nights, perhaps you should rely on local tour operators.

Near the airstrip there is also a small museum that collects images of the history of the Kaieteur Falls where you can also find information on the flora and fauna of the park. There is also a small shop with small local handicrafts.


How to get to the falls

Airplane: Most travelers prefer the day tour by opting for a 45 ‘flight in a small Cessna from Georgetown Airport. Obviously the weather conditions and the number of passengers can influence the various tours. For this reason it would always be good to organize yourself well in advance.

By land or by river: a slow journey of a few days is perhaps the best way to discover the park and the waterfalls, totally immersing yourself in the heart of nature and adventure. There are several tour operators who organize trips of this type. Find all the info here.

Source: Guyana tourism

Photos: Shutterstock and Adobe stock Photos

Estonia: Places surrounded by nature away from tourist destinations

Estonia is covered for half of its territory by forests and can count about 2,000 islands and islets. All this makes it an ideal destination for excursions and walks immersed in nature. Autumn is a perfect season for the colors it can offer, but it is excellent because it “opens the way” to winter, the most fascinating time of year when traveling to Estonia.

The Estonian sea
Saarema Sõrve lighthouse at sunset
by Peter Aleksandrov from Shutterstock

Vilsandi is a remote islet 2 kilometers from Saarema. If the water level is low it is possible to cross the stretch of sea on foot, but there are those who prefer to take a canoe and enjoy the sea with this “drier” vehicle. Vilsandi is a nature reserve with trails and juniper forests in abundance. You will find ways to walk and explore. And if you love the sea, there is plenty of it here!

The Harilaid Peninsula is also a good spot to find off-the-beaten-path paths for mass tourism. There is a hiking trail that crosses the whole island and leads up to the lighthouse. The lucky ones will also have the opportunity to spot some seals!

Harilaid Lighthouse
By Artenex from Shutterstock

The Harilaid lighthouse has a unique feature: it is partially submerged by the sea. With time and the “movements” of the earth, the lighthouse, which was once built on the beach, now stands in the middle of the sea.

Remote corners of Estonian nature
Summer landscape of Konnu-Suursoo Bog in Korvemaa, Estonia.
by Elvin Heinla from Shutterstock

Wetlands are the jewels of Estonian nature. Endless wooden paths cross the forests and, in winter, it is possible to rent snowshoes to explore these routes among the wonderful whitewashed landscape.
Kõnnu Suursoo near Viru Marsh, Muraka Marsh, Laeva and Meenikunno are more remote options if you love places away from it all to walk among nature.

Bike, camping and berry picking
Viru Bog in Lahemaa National Park in autumn
by Candy 1812 from Adobe stock

Another way to experience Estonia in peace is to travel by bike. You can take a train and move from one stop to another and then explore a certain place by bike. Some interesting options can be those of going from Orava to Viljandi or from Taevaskoda to Kiviõli on Lake Peipsi or Saaremaa, Hiiumaa, Muhu, all ideal islands to be explored by bike.

Lovers of picking berries, berries or mushrooms can find “bread for their teeth” in the Estonian forests. Here you can find the Nordic wild blueberry, lingonberry, lingonberry, wild strawberry, wild raspberry and cloudberry. There are also mushrooms but the best places are kept secret by the locals, so try to settle for what you find.

Source: Visitestonia

Photos: Visitestonia, Shutterstock and Adobe foto