World?s 10 Most Unusual Hotels

World?s 10 Most Unusual Hotels

They say that travel is about the journey, not just the destination. But if you’ve ever arrived at your destination only to find out that your hotel room is dingy, dirty, and miles from all the action, it’s time to take matters into your own hands.

An increasing number of hotels are positioning themselves to be more than just a place to sleep—they are the action.

You may have heard of the ice hotels in Sweden and Montreal, or even funky spots like California’s Madonna Inn and the Dog Bark Park in Cottonwood, Idaho … but here are few more unusual hotels to inspire your next trip.

These are our picks for the world’s most unusual hotels, in no particular order.

1. To the Lighthouse

Love all things nautical? Then try sleeping in a lighthouse.

There are actually dozens of lighthouses around the world that welcome overnight guests, but at Brown’s Point Lighthouse in Tacoma, Washington, you get to be the lighthouse keeper.

This 30-foot concrete structure is perched by Commencement Bay and the keeper’s dwelling (at right) was recently restored for overnight stays. Guest participate in the “keeper program,” in which they maintain the lighthouse and hold public tours. This job is designed for at least two people, and six maximum, making it a great educational experience for families. Rates range from 0-0 per week. 253-927-2536,

2. Go Climb a Tree

If it seems like the days of kids clambering up trees and running around outdoors are a thing of the past, skip the sedentary vacations and force them out – and up.

The Cedar Creek Treehouse is a private mountain retreat in the woods of Mt. Rainier, located 50 feet up in a 200-year-old Western Red Cedar tree.

Owner Bill Compher built the treehouse himself, making it large enough to accommodate up to five people.

There’s a bathroom, kitchen and dining area, not to mention skylights and an observatory 100 feet up that offers great views from all around.

Though it’s a safe climb up, kids under 10 are not allowed inside the treehouse. Rates are 0 for two people, and for each additional guest. 360-569-2991,

3. All Aboard the Romance Train

To conjure up the romantic days of train travel, why not cozy up inside an actual train car for the night? The Northern Rail Traincar B&B in Two Harbors, Minnesota, is made up of connected rail cars with 18 guest rooms.

The Porter Suite sleeps two and includes a dinette and a private bath for 9-9. Or go all out and climb aboard the King Conductor Suite, a full train car that sleeps up to four, with a king bedroom and a separate living room.

Located on 160 acres of forested land (about 25 minutes outside of Duluth), you have access to Lake Superior and Gooseberry Falls, plus outdoor activities like hiking and golfing. 877-834-0955;

4. Were You Raised in a Barn?

Located on the Puget Sound, just a ferry ride away from Seattle, is a quirky little spot designed for two. The Big Red Barn Getaway is a real barn built in the 1890s which has been renovated into a tiny inn.

You’ll be surrounded by miles of unspoiled nature (and may even catch sight of a Bald Eagle). The historic Victorian seaport of Port Townsend is a 10-minute walk away, where you can take advantage of the requisite quaint antique shops and art galleries; Fort Worden State Park is only two minutes away, with gorgeous beaches and plenty of hiking trails.

And, since it’s a barn, Fido and Fluffy are welcome to join you for an extra fee (but they’re asked to stay out of the Jacuzzi). 360-301-1271,

5. How About a Yurt?

Ever slept in a yurt? Even know what a yurt is?

These round, canvas dwellings were created by Mongolian nomads more than 2,000 years ago; it’s an ingenious structure that sits sturdily on the ground and often can fit several people at once.

Treebones Resort in Big Sur, California, has 16 yurts along the ridge above the Pacific Ocean, four of which can fit families. You’ll have the best ocean-view room in town. Rates are 0-0 for two to four people, including a waffle breakfast. 877-424-4787,

6. Batting Around in a Cave

You may not know that there are several underground hotels in Cappadocia, Turkey (a region in the middle of Turkey not too far from Ankara), but the most highly touted one of all is the Gamirasu Cave Hotel, which is located inside a restored, thousand-year-old Byzantine monastic retreat. There are 18 exquisitely adorned rooms, some of which were actually monk cells, which are carved into the cave or built with volcanic rock.

Calm, cool and peaceful, a stay here will make you feel as if you’ve been transported centuries back in time. And don’t worry, there is running water. Room rates range from about 0 for a double room to about 0 for a deluxe suite.

7. Digging the Dug-Out

The Australian outback is filled with opal mines and dugouts galore—so dive in and experience one first-hand at the Desert Cave Hotel located within the sandstone of Coober Pedy.

The hotel boasts 19 underground rooms, and about 30 rooms above ground for those who prefer not to live troglodyte-style. Also underground are casinos, shops featuring locally mined opals and Aboriginal arts and crafts. Rooms are about 0 a night, not including meals or a cave tour.

8. Sleeping in the Pipelines

OK, this one is for the truly adventurous … but if you ever wanted to brag that you slept in a drainpipe, read on. Daspark Hotel in Lintz, Austria consists of three concrete drainpipes in the middle of a park.

Inside each one is a teensy room built for two, with a double bed, a lamp, a small storage space, and even power outlets. Food, toilets and showers are all located nearby.

If you’re concerned about sleeping in a public park, rest assured that the drainpipes are all locked with a safety code. Sure, a drainpipe room may be a little, well, rudimentary, but the beauty is that you determine your own rates.

9. Sleeping with the Fishes

With both China and Dubai building underwater hotels called the Hydropolis, sleeping under water seems to the wave of the future. China is hoping to have its land-based HydroTower component open by the Olympics, but if you can’t wait until then, stick a little closer to home and visit the Jules Verne Undersea Lodge.

This underwater hotel is actually a research lab in Key Largo, Florida, but regular landlubbers are invited to spend the night. You’ll actually have to scuba dive your way into the hotel, but they’ll give you all the necessary training. An overnight visit costs about 5 and includes diving gear and unlimited dives if you’re certified (or you can get certified during your stay). 305-451-2353,

10. Doing Time

The new Liberty Hotel in Boston has been making headlines as a former jail-turned-luxury-hotel. After a five-year renovation program that cost upward of 0 million, the Charles Street jail has maintained some precious features that pay homage to its history—such as a restaurant called Clink, and a bar called Alibi housed in the former “drunk tank.”

But if you’re looking for a more, well, authentic prison experience, you’ll have to jet yourself over to Latvia to the Karosta Prison. Located in Liepaja (about three hours west of Riga), this former Soviet detention facility was once known as the “prison that nobody escaped from.”

Today, it welcomes (if that’s the right word) visitors to spend a night for about .

This is no blueblood luxury hotel: Guests play the role of a prisoner, complete with ex-Soviet military guards berating and ordering you around, cold iron beds, and toilets that remain uncomfortably close to their original state. Karosta Prison – English website.

By Managing Editor Sarika Chawla for Peter

: Peter Greenberg is a preeminent expert on travel. His focus is on the journey, providing insider’s tips and recommendations to an increasingly savvy and demanding traveler. Peter is also author of The New York Times best-selling series, The Travel Detective, which uncovers secrets the airline, hotel, cruise and rental car industries don’t want consumers to know. Check out Travel Hotels for more insider information.

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The Best Santa Cruz Attractions

The Best Santa Cruz Attractions

There are many attractions that draw people to Santa Cruz, both to visit and to live. From beautiful beaches and boardwalks to the beauty and wildlife of the redwood forests, the area in and around Santa Cruz is full of things to see and do. Whether you are planning a vacation or relocation, the varied attractions will ensure that you are never bored!

One of the premier attractions that brings people to the area is the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. This is the oldest amusement park in the state, and it sits on the coastline of the beautiful Pacific Ocean. Plenty of old fashioned rides and attractions keep this amusement park feeling historic, while newer thrill rides keep the attraction exciting for those seeking a modern adventure. Since the amusement park borders the beach, visitors can bring their beach gear and spend some time enjoying the sand and surf.

For those whose favorite thrill is finding a great bargain, there are plenty of local attractions that revolve around shopping. The Pacific Garden Mall in the heart of downtown Santa Cruz is one example. The unique shops in this outdoor mall are the perfect places to find a unique California gift. Street performers are a common sight along the mall’s streets.

For the intellectual individual who is researching more cerebral attractions, the area provides several museums along with the beauty and fun of the beach. The Santa Cruz City Museum of Natural History highlights the flora and fauna of the area. This museum has plenty of attractions that appeal to adults, but with the hands on design of many exhibits, it is the perfect place to take children who need a break from the beach.

The Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History is another museum in the city. This museum features rotating exhibits that highlight contemporary artists and historical artifacts from the area. It also hosts tours of three historic county buildings, including the Davenport Jail Museum, the Evergreen Historic Cemetery, and the Octagon Building.

Of course, the most famous attractions are the beautiful beaches that the area is famous for, and there are several that guests can choose from when visiting. Cowell Beach, the main Santa Cruz beach, is the one next to the Boardwalk. Here visitors can enjoy the sand and surf along with excellent restaurants lining the wharf.

At the Lighthouse Point Beach, visitors can explore the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum and watch actual surfers perform on the waves. This is a beach where dogs are welcome. The Natural Bridges State Beach, yet another popular and well-known beach, has an interesting arched rock formation overlooking its shores, providing lovely views. The tide pools at this beach provide an excellent place to view the wildlife that is normally hidden below the ocean waves.

If you have ever been to visit these Santa Cruz attractions, then you know the appeal of the city. Many visitors return to become residents. While the housing prices in Santa Cruz are relatively high, befitting its status as a “destination location”, the people who live there feel that the high price is well worth it. Come and visit Santa Cruz and see for yourself!

Seb Frey is a Capitola, California Real Estate Broker specializing in Santa Cruz Real Estate. He is fluent in Spanish and enjoys helping people find their piece of the American Dream in Santa Cruz. You can find Seb’s blog at

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Wine Country Tours: The Importance Of Examining All Of Your Options

Wine Country Tours: The Importance Of Examining All Of Your Options

Are you in the process of planning a trip to wine country? If you are, you will want to take a wine country tour or even a number of them. Wine tasting and wine tours are, perhaps, the two activities most commonly associated with trips to wine country.

When looking to take a wine country tour, it is first important that you examine all of your options. This is important, as you, literally, have so many to choose from. Starting with location, Northern California, the Finger Lakes area of New York State, and parts of Washington State are known for their great wine production. This results in multiple areas in the United States being known as wine country, especially by locals. With that said, Northern California is the area most commonly talked about on both national and international levels.

Another one of the many reasons why you are encouraged to examine all of your options, when looking to take a wine country tour, is because wine tours come in a number of different formats. For tourists who are unfamiliar with the area, guided wine country tours are a popular option. Many guided wine tour companies have participants meet at a public location, where everyone is then boarded on to a bus or a traveling van. The only downside to guided wine tours is that they often limited on the number of available spots they have. Also, many tend to visit only a specific number of wineries and those wineries are often predetermined ahead of time without input from tourists, like you.

In keeping with wine country tour options, you also have the ability to take an independent tour. This is where you will, essentially, be transporting yourself to wineries and vineyards in the area. Independent wine tours are ideal for those who do not want to be rushed, those who have a way to get around, like with a car rental, as well as those who would like to visit specific wineries and vineyards that may not be visited by guided tours. Many tourists like taking their own independent wine tours, as they have much more freedom to do, see, and taste what they want.

Speaking of the wineries and vineyards that you can visit, you have an unlimited number of options. That is just another one of the many reasons why you are encouraged to examine all of your options before making any official arrangements concerning wine country tours. For example, did you know that in California’s wine country, you have around four hundred locations to choose from? You do. If you would like to take a guided wine tour, examine some of the vineyards and wineries that will be examined. Are they ones that you would like to visit? If you are interested in independently taking your own wine tour, be sure to examine as many options as you possibly can.

Cost is another one of the many reasons why you should take the time to examine all of your options, when looking to take a wine country tour. Cost is and should be important with both independent and guided wine country tours. Does the cost of a guided wine tour include wine tasting? If not, make sure that the rate you are charged is at least semi affordable. For independent tours, examine the rates that each vineyard or winery charges. Also, examine their method of collecting money. Are you just charged for wine tasting or are you also charged an admission fee?

Perhaps, the greatest reason why you are urged to take the time to examine all of your options, when looking to plan a wine country tour is because of satisfaction. By examining all of your options, you are more likely to choose guided wine tours or wineries to visit independently that you are actually interested in attending. By handpicking your vacation activities, you are more likely to enjoy yourself.

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Been at the computer too long? Need a little break? Take this 1-minute vacation. Look, listen and imagine yourself in a meadow in Northern California with the Roosevelt Elk. Then you can get back to work.
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Travel Q&A

Travel Q&A

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Everything’s Close When You Stay in Downtown La

Everything’s Close When You Stay in Downtown La

Los Angeles, California. Maybe New York City has a slightly better claim to it, but a lot of people think L.A. really is the Center of the Universe.

In the case of Los Angeles, it is the center of the entertainment universe and has more legitimate movie stars per square inch than just about any other place on earth.

And so visitors come for the glamor and the glitz, for a chance to catch sight of a star maybe just going to the supermarket or walking in quasi-designer cut-offs and tee-shirts down Melrose Avenue. They come to see how movies are made, how television shows are produced, to be thrilled by the area’s amusement parks and to soak up the endless sunshine on beaches populated by the most beautiful people in the world. Downtown L.A.

On our most recent visit, we tried something different: setting up base camp right in downtown Los Angeles, which of course is the hub of the Los Angeles Basin with spokes heading in every direction for every kind of adventure you can imagine. Checking in at the Omni Los Angeles, our “camp” was actually the lap of luxury. This hotel is a modest size for downtown L.A. ‘ just 17 stories,’ but located right in the heart of downtown next to California Plaza’s shops and restaurants and just a short walk from many interesting sites. The rooms at the Omni are tastefully modern, decorated in the tan, beige and subtle green combination that you see in so many new houses these days. Rich mahogany furniture, elegant lighting fixtures and chocolate velour couches contrast nicely with the overall color scheme. In short, it’s just what you might expect in L.A. , luxurious and very up to date.

Similar to the “giants” of the Redwood forest, downtown L.A. has its own “Valley of the Giants” giant, mostly modern, gleaming buildings that will keep you straining your neck as you constantly feel compelled to look skyward at these products of man’s ingenuity. With L.A.’s sunshine, the buildings reflect each other, each one offering a different, fascinating visual pattern. And almost none of these skyscrapers are elongated boxes, all the newer ones have angles of some sort, all snugly placed alongside each other like some humongous three-dimensional puzzle.

If you appreciate art and design, it’s a two-minute walk to the Museum of Contemporary Art with its imposing “tree” of airplane and transportation parts greeting museum-goers at the door. Or, it’s another two minutes down the street to the Walt Disney Theater, home of L.A.’s classical music and maybe the most unusual looking structure in all of downtown with its billowy, non-linear angles. Sculptures and other forms of artwork are sprinkled throughout the downtown area, leading one to believe this is one very art-conscious city.

Of course no visit to L.A. would be complete without encountering some movie-making. There always seems to be an L.A. movie shoot on weekends — and this trip was no exception. A crew on a truck rigged with a camera platform that lowered to almost road level was filming a vehicle “chase scene” as it passed by our hotel.

Those who love movies and the Oscars will recall that, for years, the Academy Awards were given out at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, another two-minute walk from our hotel. In fact, the entire downtown civic center is nearby and this part of Los Angeles would be an especially convenient place to stay if you wanted to include a play or concert, or perhaps a game at Staples Center.

Back at our hotel, we discovered that a large section of the fourth floor has been converted to a spa and state-of-the-art gym. The latter is probably a necessity if you endulge in dinner at the Omni’s fine dining restaurant, Noe, where you’ll find award-winning “progressive American cuisine.”

While there is much in downtown Los Angeles to visit and enjoy, there are also short excursions to such nearby places as Hollywood, Santa Monica, the Getty Museum and so much more. Here are a few of our favorites:

Getty Museum

When the Getty Museum first opened in 1997, the museum’s parking and transportation system were quickly overwhelmed to the point that anyone thinking about visiting the museum had to make parking reservations months in advance. Those unwilling to wait hoofed it for miles and then waited up to four hours just to take a tram ride to the museum’s spectacular hillside setting west of downtown Los Angeles.

What a difference 10 years makes. Today no reservations are required and it’s possible to drive right to your parking spot, grab a tram and be on top of the mountain just a few minutes after your arrival.

A trip to the Getty is like a quickie art seminar that will teach you just enough names and buzzwords to make your friends believe you really are educated. It’s a great addition to any Southern California vacation.

Santa Monica

If you’re looking for the cool factor, it would be hard to beat Santa Monica, a playground for L.A. TV and movie people that is all neatly compressed into 8.3 miles strategically bordered by the Santa Monica Mountains on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other.

The words “trendy” and “hip” seem to pop up a lot in the descriptions of the some 400 restaurants packed into this little piece of real estate. Throw in a few art galleries, some luxury hotels and ‘ oh yes ‘ celebrities and you have the makings of an eye-popping diversion from your everyday hometown. Of course Santa Monica has an unbelievably beautiful location. Palisades Park has incredible views that include the expansive beach areas as well as places as distant (and famous) as Malibu and Catalina. The Santa Monica Pier is the dominant feature on the water’s edge ‘ and also over the water — and is a favorite for families.

La Brea Tar Pits

Close to downtown is the La Brea Tar Pits, one of the world’s most famous fossil localities. More extinct Ice Age plants and animals have been recovered here than anywhere else on earth.

It’s hard to imagine but here, just a few blocks south from glitzy Beverly Hills, there were once such animals as saber-toothed cats and mammoths roaming the area. The museum offers skeletal reconstructions of some of these beasts while the surrounding area, Hancock Park, offers pathways around some of the archeological dig sites as well as the tar pits.

The fossils collected at La Brea date back to between 10,000 and 40,000 years ago. Nearly all of the skeletons on display in the museum are real fossil bones found at the tar pits. Since 1906, more than one million bones have been recovered from the La Brea Tar Pits representing 231 species of vertebrates. Another 159 kinds of plants and 234 kinds of invertebrates have been identified.


Hollywood’s definitely worth the short trip from downtown L.A. The famous intersection of Hollywood and Vine really isn’t all that appealing, although there has been some major renovation in the area just in the past few years. Hollywood at Highland ‘ a great place to park, by the way — is an impressive new upscale shopping complex adjacent to Grumman’s Chinese Theater (with its foot and hand prints), and the Walk of Fame stretches from the complex on down Hollywood Boulevard for several blocks.

It is interesting to watch the people who, in other cities, might be called street performers. In Hollywood, they’re movie characters with elaborate costumes that lure unsuspecting tourists into taking pictures of them with their arms, tentacles, paws or whatever wrapped around other tourists.

Close by is the home of the Academy Awards, the famous Kodak Theater. For only a person, one can take a half hour tour of the theater.


WHERE: Los Angeles is at the center of the entertainment universe, 400 miles south of San Francisco, 125 miles north of San Diego.

WHAT: A large, sprawling metropolitan city with enough interesting attractions to keep you occupied for weeks.

WHEN: Anytime. Great year-round L.A. weather is legend.

WHY: There is something for everyone: culture, beaches, amusement parks, fine dining, you name it.

HOW: For more information on Los Angeles, contact Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau at 213-689-8822 or visit For more information on the Omni Los Angeles at California Plaza, please phone 1-888-444-OMNI or visit

Cary Ordway is a syndicated travel writer and president of Getaway Media Corp, publisher of websites specializing in California vacations and Northwest getaways.

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Travel FAQ

Travel FAQ

Any apposite forclosed homes?
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Any apposite gymnastic school contained by arizona?
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Preferably outside the metroplex..No JFK sites please. – Down town of McKinney. There’s an air museum within that covers airplane and rocket history-in fremont there’s the Rutherford B. Hayes museum-probably a little more than 1 hrs drive.

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Carole Terwilliger Meyers visits Google to present her book “Weekend Adventures in San Francisco and Northern California”. This event took place on Jul 21, 2009, as part of the Authors@Google series. Life is a journey. Here to help you escape the bumps and enjoy the ride through Northern California is the thoroughly revised 8th edition of WEEKEND ADVENTURES IN SAN FRANCISCO & NORTHERN CALIFORNIA. Award-winning author Carole Terwilliger Meyers, who published the first edition of her book in 1977, invites you to visit the vast array of vacation wonders in Northern California. You can spend the night in a coastal lighthouse, play chess on one of the two largest chessboards in the United States, and pan for gold in an authentic Gold Rush river. WEEKEND ADVENTURES has something for everyone–from weekend warriors anxious to test their mettle to world-weary slugabeds who want breakfast brought to them on a tray. Weighing in at almost 1 1/2 pounds, WEEKEND ADVENTURES is packed with interesting places to visit: the Santa Cruz mountains, the coast south to Morro Bay and north to Eureka, the Wine Country, the Russian River area, Sacramento and the Delta, Highway 101 north and south, the national parks, the Gold Rush Country, Lake Tahoe, and the Mt. Shasta area. San Francisco and the Bay Area–including the East Bay, Marin, and the Peninsula–are also detailed. Former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown says, “Ms. Meyers love for the City and her familiarity with its abundant charms

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San Diego Travel Guide

San Diego Travel Guide

San Diego.

San Diego every traveler’s fantasy! San Diego will fill you with endless adventure; it is splendid vicinity to visit through out the year having just the perfect weather. This place is bestowed with divine breathtaking beauty to allure you. Hmmm! What bliss? Who would like to leave this piece of paradise and go back home? You can feast your eyes on nature while sitting on sandy beaches and spectacular long coastline, here you can brush off your everyday worries and let yourself loose in the nature. San Diego is a complete holiday package for family as well as couple or a loner. The events and world-class places in San Diego will keep you busy for quite a few days. You‘ll long cherish your this trip to San Diego and the reveries will keep you afresh long after your visit.

San Diego mainly is famed for its great weather and captivating beaches but besides the perfect weather the events and places of San Diego is also peerless. These activities attract 30 million tourists every year with its unique amusements. The invitation of multiple breath-stopping events is open to people belonging to all varied fields of life and having different tastes. A variety of diverse entertainment and events awaits you in San Diego.

1. Events.

A whirlpool of events will surround you and leave you gasping with all the excitement. Remember you should have handsome amount of holidays in hand for your trip to San Diego, there are a lot of venues and events worth catching up with and of course you don’t want to miss any. Lovely climate of this eye-catching piece of earth allows having activities round the year. A novel specialty of San Diego is kite decorating and flying competition held in March on Ocean beach supported by the perfect wind kite-flying needs. Balboa Park offers Native American dancing, music and art exhibition in American Indian Cultural Days in May whereas things get in full swing with Block party at Pacific Beach held on Garnet Ave the same month.
Famous two days Ocean beach fair and Chili Cook-off Street bash in June is another candy for the visitors, it is coupled with three-week Del Mar Fair, a mega county fair held at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, with banner musical acts and hundreds of carnival rides. Moreover US Open Sandcastle Competition is held in Imperial Beach, south of Coronado in the mid-July. Hottest month of the year August is loaded with fun and fiesta, Hillcrest city Fest Street fair is held in one of San Diego’s chirpiest inner-city areas in August. The Gaslamp Quarter party scene follows in September during the San Diego Street Scene festival. Bright, colorful, decked boats floating in San Diego’s harbor will crackle firework in your soul with its fascinating vista. This Harbor parade of decorated, dazzling lit boats in December is the next big event else than Christmas with dozens of sparkling boats floating gracefully in San Diego’s harbor.

2. San Diego Attractions.

In addition to these stimulating occasions there are other awe-inspiring must see venues that’ll fill the thirst of your nature-loving eye and give solace to your soul with its miscellany. Room on the sun kissed beaches while leaving behind your footprints on the sandy banks of San Diego let the costal breeze brush through your hair though the mild dry desert air whisper lovely unwritten melodies to you. Feel one with water; let the blue green pure water wash your lethargy away.

Sea world.

Yap! It’s time to get wet. Get drenched in water with the “soak zone” at the stunning show at sea world. Sea world alone is enough exciting attractions for the San Diego visit. It’s worth coming to this place to be transfixed by these magnificent sea-animals entertainment. You got to come early not to miss anything, as there are long lines at this place. Plus there is show timing that of course you would hate to miss and it is only repeated twice daily. Shamu the sensational gray killer whale displays the masterpiece. The tricks played by Shamu are so graceful and absorbing that by the end of the show you’ll for sure fell in love with this magnificent creature of sea. Shamu-son of sea loves to splash water on audience as a souvenir to them from him on their visit to sea world. Seeing the popularity of Shamu, Shamu the killer whale has become an unofficial symbol of the city.

You can fulfill your dream of touching a dolphin. Who can resist loving such an adorable creature? Speculate a high-energy dolphin show with state of the art special effects. You can feed them or see others feeding them. Its main lead character the star dolly decorates the dolphin show. She stands like queen amongst other fellow dolphins. Furthermore penguins, the sea otters and seals also exhibit beguiling shows. You can have your marine life choreographed with all these special animals. A unique show of land’s pets going to water and showing tricks for water is also very thrilling. If you want to have tiny winy break from seeing shows the haunted house can give you a pause tied with thrill. Furthermore you can also watch penguins, seals, dolphins, sea otters and ferocious sharks swimming through the clear blue water. Food at Sea world works like a catalyst for your tour, any meal you get is superb in its quality.

Wild Arctic though a newer attraction at Sea World but equals in amusing visitors reviving the tradition of Sea world, it provides you a glance into life under the northern seas and ice flows. The main feature of this part is that it portrays the glacier image in full spirit; you can actually smell of ice and snow and icicle drip under the canopies, which is not less than a blessing in the scorching heat of summer. Another secret to Wild Arctic’s admiration is white beluga whale in the tank at underwater viewing area. Anyways I can safely says including all the wonders San Diego’s Sea world remains the kingdom of Shamu, this is a must visit place at least once in life. There are also “Cinderella carriages” available that’ll take you to a fairyland and seal your vision with charming sea view tour along the harbor. A water ski display will add in the variety of entertainment Sea world offers. The last but of course not the least the night firework show will leave breathless with its stupendous glory.

Contemporary art museum.

San Diego beaches are only about beautiful sunshine and surfing, definitely it has much more to offer. If you are not all time party-animal and would like to be mesmerized by the nature then array of these spectacular places will entangle your attention; with your visit to every new place your enthusiasm to see the next place will be enthralled. If you are interested in history or in a more intellectual contentment, the museum of Contemporary art is just the place for you. Surrounded by glamorous and picturesque suburb of La Jolla, Museum of contemporary art beholds brilliant collections of 1960s and 70s pop art and minimalist, plus you can also scrutinize the conceptual works and cross-border art from San Diego and Tijuana. Besides this conventional type of museum you can see a more untraditional San Diego’s Maritime museum consisting of three ships. This museum contains educational tools for both adults as well as kids. These glorious vessels present an elevating vision to its audience.

San Diego Zoo.

San Diego Zoo’s world famous popularity is enough for its introduction. San Diego Zoo is standing proudly in the famous Balboa Park and is popular for a bouquet of activities. One of the main attractions of San Diego zoo is its collection of exotic animals fill you with pleasure. One day is not enough for Zoo; try to divide your tour to Zoo on two days to enjoy and see it fully. This zoo serves as real treat for kids. 10 bio-climatic zones from arctic tundra to rainforest make this Zoo more intriguing. San Diego Zoo is habitat of over 3000 animals ranging from small to endangered species of different animals. The zoo starts with plants and leads to different zones of zoo including the best part consisting on Pandas exhibition and then the huge diversity of exotic rare birds that are hard to find easily. It’s really great fun to see hippos swimming underwater through the glass-paned viewing area. You can also feed and touch plus enjoy watching the grandeur of jungle-tigers, gorillas and many more rare endangered species.

With Wild Park take a journey in to virtual world due to its geographical environment that is replicated in flora and fauna. Experience the cool sky train safari, which will provide you an overall fascinating view of Balboa Park. Gondola cars are worth taking once to feel the comfort of viewing the whole area while you mutely float along.

Mission Bay Park.
This park has San Diego’s biggest play ground. 27 miles of shoreline, 19 miles of sandy beaches, free parking, great playgrounds, picnic sites, barbecues, and basketball and volleyball courts what else you need? This place is a homeland of multiple activities like swimming, skating, bicycling, kayaking, jet skiing and waterskiing that gives fun to kids and adults. You can also take some sailing lessons, rent a boat, or play golf or tennis.

Or you can simply bask in the sun lying on the beach seeing the kids giggling on the sandy beach. Mission bay park up-to date you with helpful maps, it also have gift-shops where you can buy souvenir for your friends on your way back home.

Other places.

Besides these important places mentioned above there are still other awe-inspiring places to see. Fascinating scenic beauty will transport you in to a utopia. You should visit old Down Town San Diego to have peek in rich cultural background of this of the finest city of America. And also don’t miss these hit list places La Jolla, Cabrillo National Monument, Gaslamp Quarter, Hotel Del Coronado and Mission San Diego de Alcalá.

3. Kids event venues.

Whenever you plan vacations, the first thing that comes to your mind is what is there to interest kids where you are heading? Even most of the times we go on a holiday just for the kids so that they can enjoy, yes San Diego have a lot of potential to entertain kids of all ages along with adults at the same time.


San Diego premier theme park has something to offer for kids of all ages even the toddlers. It is separated by several areas specifying Dino Island, Explore Village, Miniland USA, Funtown, Knight’s Village, and Imagination Zone. You’ll feel kid’s excitement mounting as they reach the gate where a 9-foot, bright red, LEGO dinosaur welcome them to a new experience of enjoyment, ecstasy, and action. Legoland in itself is enough thrilling activity to keep you engrossed for the whole day. It will accelerate creativity and mount excitement in children as well as in adults while they initiate exploring all the areas one by one. Fun town part is especially designed fro kids it offers “transportation opportunities” for young kids; they can fly biplane, or play captain in a Lego boat or be a pilot in a Lego helicopter. All the Legoland divisions have something for kids to keep their interest in tact. Fun town gives an ideal start to Toddlers that includes Playtown and the Fairy Tale Brook boat ride. Intriguing Castle hill presents two exhilarating coaster ride, Dragon Coaster and SpellBreaker.

Older kids would definitely enjoy the Imagination Zone which features the popular ride Fun Town’s Sky Cruiser and also LEGO TECHNIC Coaster. Out of five venues, only Playtown provides a family theatre experience, don’t miss the chance; be sure to explore all the areas of Legoland as it’ll kindle both mental and physical activity in children and adults. Besides Legoland, Sea world and Zoo also offer a lot of pleasure for kids. San Diego’s almost every venue as something for children’s interest.

Hotel Reservation.

Let the colors of benign nature spill over your soul, indulge in luxuriant sun drenched sandy beach and feast your eyes on the beautiful fire burned sun-set while the turquoise crystal, silvery waves are splashing through your feet relaxing in the balcony of your hotel nearing beach. Hotels are easily available ranging from high rates to cheapest. But even the cheapest of hotels do provide best service. Rooms are available as low as 12 dollar a day and up to 180 dollars + depending on their evaluation. These hotels are neat and tidy and will make you feel like at home away from home. Along with accommodation you can enjoy food as well that starts from 5 dollar up to 20 dollar +. Hmmm! Not bad ha? So now you can shun your worry that your trip will fall heavy on your purse you can enjoy your visit to San Diego and also remain secure financially. It’s not that your return from San Diego will leave you penniless, see you can enjoy your vacation to the fullest with such competitive rates for every event and entertainment San Diego have to offer.

A luxuriant mix culture of San Diego gives ample wide selection of cuisines for you to ravish. Large assortment of cuisine will baffle you but don’t worry it’s time to taste all new delicious courses you never tasted before. You have a chance to eat these special exquisite cuisines that will make your trip a memorable one. There is a long list of hotels you can choose from according to your taste and affordability Like Gaslamp Strip Club will suit you if you are a barbeque lover. Don’t be embarrassed by the name of the hotel it actually refers to strip steak. This is the best place in town for meat-lovers. By the way Gaslamp club is amid-range hotel so you can easily enjoy staying and eating here.

Indulge in the luxury of eating right where the garnet banks of beach meets the blue water of ocean at Kono’s. There is no better place then Kono’s for delicious breakfasts, burgers and sandwiches and a sea view as bonus. Everyone can afford the competitive prices of Kono’s. Then comes the hi-fi Parallel 33, India, Morocco, Japan, China and San Diego’s fusion of all dishes is available at this innovative restaurant. The prices are a bit high but the assortments of diverse cuisines are no match with the prices, they are simply mouth-watering. There are also other budget and mid-range hotels you can check according to your taste and desire.
Car rental.
If you are thinking that you’ll reach to San Diego and can enjoy your trip without a car think again. This is the first thing you should be doing after reach to your desired destiny. Yes you can take your own car too, but I’ll suggest why take this hassle of parking cars and then walking long way to a hotel or elsewhere. Enjoy the trip to the fullest rent a car and enjoy the scenes in your drive to any of the places. San Diego is quite easy to explore by car. If you are reaching to San Diego by plane, airport itself offers a lot of ground transportation as almost all the main car rental agencies have desks on the airport lounges so you can rent a car right from the airport. Or if you are desirous of traveling to San Diego through car then there are three main routes that you can choose from i.e. 1-5, I-8 or the I-15.

• I-5 provides entrance from San Ysidro, to US-Mexico border crossing, and to southern and most part of San Diego.

• Through Southern California 1-8 starts from west and east enters into Arizona where it connects with route number I-10.

• I-15 moves from north to south, with San Diego being the farthest south.

Rental cars are also available form hotels and down town, in addition if you are ready to try something new then trolley (tram) service usage for traveling is also one of the attractions in San Diego. Then Gray hound buses are in abundance in the area and there is also the facility of train. So you have a lot of choices to select from.

6. Air Travel.

San Diego international airport is just 10 minutes drive out of down town. While landing at San Diego airport maybe shocking for the new comers as the plane passes so close from down town building. It is not a major gateway but there are some direct flights to San Diego. If you are flying from abroad then you might be coming from Los Angles but the good news is the connecting flight to San Diego only takes 35 minutes to reach at it’s native airport or you can get here by car as it’s only take 2 hr journey. There are a lot of air-shuttle agencies serving the tourists to and fro the airport. As San Diego is one of the most wanted places you can also get concession packages through out the year, do check before booking your tickets.

7. Vacation Package.

A lot packages that San Diego offers are so tempting and ready to take you to most fabulous places you’ll ever dream of. There are San Diego cards that will enable you to see a lot of diverse magnificent places as the boredom-beating museums, natural zoos, animal parks and beautiful sandy beaches at quite low rates, which if you visit on your own may cost you three to four times more expensive without the discount cards. In the same way for almost all events too there are packages for the convenience of visitors. You can benefit yourself by getting one or two packages for you.

The memories of San Diego will keep you fresh even after you return to the dreary life routine, this incredible expedition of curiosity and wonder gives you a nice outlet from everyday tense life. The rocking night of San Diego will lull you to sleep when you’ll reach home from your office. It’s a nice isolated corner of nature not yet exploited by man-made progress; one should visit it at least once in life.
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San Diego mainly is famed for its great weather and captivating beaches but besides the perfect weather the events and places of San Diego is also peerless. These activities attract 30 million tourists every year with its unique amusements. The invitation of multiple breath-stopping events is open to people belonging to all varied fields of life and having different tastes

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Outdoor Adventure

Outdoor Adventure

Come summer, and it’s time to enjoy the authentic outdoors. Given below are our top three destinations for outdoor adventure this summer.


The Grand Canyon National Park: The world’s most famous, most visited, most-viewed ditch, the Grand Canyon is an iconic natural wonder. This summer, get away from your stereotyped tailgate picnic to the Canyon. Move away from the thronging crowds and explore the heart of this colossus. Take the Hermit Trail and enjoy a 25-kilometer round-trip just below the south rim. On the way, you’ll plunge into the Red Rock abyss and see the Canyon up close. Day hikes are stunning, though humid. Bring plenty of water, nutritious food and a winning attitude.


Yosemite National Park: For the ultimate viewing experience, the Yosemite Valley at the heart of Yosemite National Park is a must-see. No wonder the place is overrun with feisty tourists who make the campgrounds look more like a crowded street in New York rather than the great outdoors. But, you can still have the time of your life if you venture further inland for some breathtaking action. Climbing the sheer face of the “El Cap” is one such experience. Its 3,000+ face is considered to be one of the best big-wall climbing surfaces. There are some 80 routes to the summit. Scaling the largest chunk of exposed granite on the earth won’t be an easy task. Springtime is the best time to try it. In the summers, the rock is baking hot and in the winters, the days are short and chilly. Advanced reservation at a nearby camp site is recommended.


The Olympic National Park: Mammoth trees, amazing wildlife and spectacular vegetation make the Olympic National Park one of the best parks in America. People visit this Park for a number of reasons. Some like to delve into the little seen lollipop-shaped backpacking route that goes around the White Mountain. Others like to climb the first divide, from where they can catch the spectacular view of flowery meadows and white-capped mountain peaks. Adventure activities include fishing, camping, backpacking, climbing, hiking and beach combing.


While the above are our top picks, you don’t have to limit yourself to these destinations alone. Visit the Redwood National Park and enjoy camping, hiking or horseback riding surrounded by giant trees looming over you all the way up to the sky. The Channel Islands National Park and the Voyageurs Park are places to visit if you love water sports like swimming, kayaking, snorkeling and whale watching. The Channel Islands is just the place for a family vacation. Your little ones will be thrilled by opportunities for whale watching, beach combing and enjoying the live underwater video program. For family fun and adventure activities with bigger children, you can check out the Big Cypress National Park. Besides being delighted by the forest, kids can get their fill of live alligators, fishing, biking, bird watching and canoeing.


As you can see, the National Parks in America offer you and your family unparalleled adventure and fun. So, what are you waiting for? Isn’t it time you took to the great outdoors?


Welcome to the net’s most complete resource for outdoor travel & adventure in America’s National Parks and more — FREE insider’s info by adventurers for adventurers.



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Encinitas Offers Unparalleled Charm And Beauty

Encinitas Offers Unparalleled Charm And Beauty

A diverse community in San Diego County, Encinitas is home to all of the beauties of Southern California. With stunning natural landscape and a prospering local economy, many real estate investors are flocking to this booming coastal town, eager to build or buy property. Homes for sale in Encinitas may carry some of the highest price tags in the area, however, these impressive houses are also considered to be some of the most magnificent.

Homes for Sale in Encinitas Radiate Nature’s Best

Located along six miles of rugged Pacific Ocean coastline, homes for sale in Encinitas rest in the Northern section of San Diego County, approximately 25 miles from the heart of the city. The outstanding beauties of nature are apparent in homes for sale in Encinitas, with pristine beaches, steep mesa bluffs, sloping hills, and expansive coastal areas composing the vicinity.

Encinitas is also known as a floral attraction in Southern California. Classified as the “Flower Growing Capital of the World” by local residents, homes for sale in Encinitas are surrounded by fabulous flower gardens and festive flower baskets. Encinitas boasts a prevalent surfing culture, and is rated as one of the top ten surfing cities by Surfer’s Magazine. Numerous surfing contests encircle homes for sale in Encinitas, due to the challenging waves, unbeatable surf, and desirable climate.

Variation in Price and Style of Homes for Sale in Encinitas

Homes for sale in Encinitas are considered to be very diverse, are can vary in style, age, and price. Quaint beach cottages, sleek Italian and Mediterranean styled villas, funky contemporary condominiums and townhouses, and modern single-family houses are just some of the housing options available in homes for sale in Encinitas. Many homes for sale in Encinitas offer amazing ocean views, with these houses demanding the highest prices in the area. A prospering vacation Mecca, there are also numerous vacation properties available for rent. The Encinitas vicinity offers more than 55 housing communities overall, a style or price for any potential home buyer.

Homes for sale in Encinitas that are positioned along the Pacific Ocean coastline possess some of the highest price tags in the area. Most ocean front properties range in price from .45 million to .9 million. Homes for sale in Encinitas situated further away from the ocean can sell for considerably less. Homes for sale in Encinitas closer to the shore average from 9,000 to 9,000.

Transportation Possibilities Surround Homes for Sale in Encinitas

Encinitas residents are fortunate to have various modes of public transportation and commuting possibilities available. The Old Encinitas area is home to a train station, with both Amtrak and Coaster commuter train services. The Coaster service provides services to Los Angeles and Orange Counties. The Commuter rail lies between the cities of Oceanside and downtown San Diego, with stops in the cities of Oceanside, Encinitas, and Solano Beach.

John Harris is a researcher and writer on real estate topics such as economics, credit improvement tips, home selling advice and home buying preparations. For more information please visit Homes For Sale Encinitas.

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6 Great San Diego Beaches

6 Great San Diego Beaches

There are hundreds of miles of beach along the California coast, and some of the best beaches for surfing, swimming, sunbathing, family outings, and beauty are located in San Diego County. If you are new to the area, or merely visiting, here is a guide to some of the best beaches in the area.

Blacks Beach is known for it’s great surf break, and is often considered the best surf in the country. Located in the northern part of La Jolla, this short strip of land is a favorite among locals, and traveling surfers. Access isn’t easy though, which deters many tourists. A cliff separates the street from the shore, and makes for difficult traversing with typical beach-gear such as chairs and coolers. Additionally, if you head north too far, you will be greeted by nude-beachgoers, so be aware when traveling with children!

For college-aged kids, teens, and families, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, and Ocean Beach are very similar. These three areas have flatter, longer, beaches, and less surf breaks than the rest of the county. Without the reefs and rocks to catch the seaweed, much of it washes up on the shore, so you have to set up camp a little further back from the water. Each of these beaches has a typical touristy feel, and Mission Beach even has a Ferris Wheel with a few other park attractions. For directions and surf information, visit the city’s lifeguard services’ site.

If you are just looking for a day out with the family, you might want to check out Mission Bay. This beach area also has parks and playgrounds for children, picnic tables and barbeque pits for a Sunday afternoon get-together. There aren’t as many sand areas here as other beaches, but you can cross a short land bridge onto Fiesta Island for some relaxing fishing.

Another great beach for families is on Coronado Island. By crossing an amazing bridge, and passing through the small town of Coronado you will find b Municipal Beach. It is just 5-10 miles above the border to Mexico, and you can even see the Tijuana skyline from the shore. The famous and luxurious Hotel del Coronado resort abuts the sand, and is filled with shops and restaurants to keep the family entertained.

If you are staying at a vacation rental in California, make you visit a few of these great San Diego’s beaches!

Ryan Frank is an avid writer and blogger living in San Diego, CA.

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