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Three Best Things to Do in Lake Como, the Understated Italian Wonder

Three Best Things to Do in Lake Como, the Understated Italian Wonder

Just below the snow-capped, gigantic Rhaetian Alps and nestled in between lush, green hills lies one of Italy's understated wonders--Lake Como. It is considered as one of Lombardy region's most picturesque lakes Shaped like an inverted Y, its shoreline is dotted with spectacular medieval villages and as you would expect of any Italian water-side town, colorful villas. If that doesn't make you dream of visiting Lake Como then download the Lake Como Travel Guide and Offline Map.

1.     Lakeside Village Hopping

The region's capital, Como, in its self, is a spectacular city that's famous for their silk products. Revel in its historic center where their impressive Duomo that dates back the 15th-century stands. To see an impressive view of the lake from above, you can take a cable car up to the quiet village of Brunate. A trip to Lake Como would never be complete without a visit to its most famous town, Bellagio. Its breathtaking view of the lake is considered the best in all the towns.

2.      Stroll Around Beautiful Villas

Lake Como is definitely a contender for having the most beautiful villas in the world. A short walk from the Bellagio town center is the gardens of Villa Melzi, a traditional English-style garden. It stretches along the lakefront and is home to a wide variety of plants and sculptures and even has an orangery and a small museum. Villa Carlotta is also a notable villa for its rhododendrons and azaleas that bloom in spring. The villa itself serves as a setting for art exhibitions and musical events.

3.     Enjoy Relaxing Boat Cruises

Taking a cruise in Lake Como itself is one of the best ways to marvel at the beauty of the lakeside houses owned by one of the most famous people in the world like Richard Branson and George Clooney. Going on a cruise not only gives you a glimpse of the lifestyle of the rich and famous, but it also gives you a grand view of the towns and villages. There's a wide variety of cruises to choose from as well. If you opt much more romantic scenery then a sunset cruise will be perfect for you.

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There's More to Sardinia than its Picturesque Coastlines

There's More to Sardinia than its Picturesque Coastlines

Sardinian is the second largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and has nearly 2,000 kilometers of coastline. But beyond its famous sandy beaches and rugged landscapes, Sardinia also offers a mountainous interior crossed with hiking trails. Its landscape is dotted with thousands of mysterious Bronze Age stone ruins called Nuraghi. These ruins are shaped like beehives and one of the oldest and largest Nuraghi is said to date back to 1500 B.C. What are you waiting for? Take that trip to beautiful Sardinia with the Sardinia Travel Guide and Offline Map.

1.      Nuraghe Su Nuraxi

What's a trip to Sardinia without visiting its sole UNESCO World Heritage Site and the island's most famous Nuraghi. The Su Nuraxi is a 1500 B.C. tower. It once stood on its own but was later incorporated into a fortified compound. Many of the neighboring buildings were erected in the Iron Age and this makes the beehive of circular interlocking buildings that tumble down the hillside. The Nuraxi tower, the oldest part of the complex, originally rose to a height of 18.6m and had three floors.

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2.      Alghero

Like the rest of Italy, Sardinia is home to many medieval cities, but Alghero is probably one of the best on the island. Its picturesque historic center is one of the best preserved in Sardinia and is a great place to wind down and relax with an abundance of restaurants and bars to choose from. It is enclosed by robust, honey-colored sea walls; it's a tightly knit enclave of cobbled lanes, Gothic palazzi and cafe-lined piazzas. Alghero makes an ideal place to stay between exploring the beaches and the nearby Riviera del Corallo.

3.      Costa Smeralda

Famous for its brilliant green-blue waters, Costa Smeralda or the Emerald Coast's beauty has drawn millionaires, royals, and business moguls to its coastline. Starting at the Golfo di Cugnana, the Costa stretches 55 kilometers northwards to the Golfo di Arzachena. The most famous spot among the yachties is the Porto Cervo, although Porto Rotondo comes to a close second with its attractive seafront promenade.

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Corsica, the French Island of City Breakers

Corsica, the French Island of City Breakers

Dubbed as one of the pearls of the Mediterranean, Corsica Island has quite an animated history. Known to be "often conquered, never subdued" the island has been successively Pisan and Genovese and now French since 1768. The diversity of the island's scenery is outstanding and contributes to the multitudes of activities you can do. You can go sunbathing by the beach, scuba diving, and even sailing at sea or if you're the mountain adventurer type you can also go hiking on the infamous G20. Download the Corsica Island Travel Guide and Offline Map to help you map out your Corsica trip.

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1.     G20

Infamously known as the toughest long distance trail in Europe, the G20 is not for the faint hearted. It traverses Corsica diagonally from north to south and is also one of the most beautiful mountain trails. It's 180 kilometers long with variations in heights of about 10,000 meters and can be walked in a whopping 15 days. The GR20 doesn't necessarily require any climbing techniques or perfect fitness level, but it does require a whole lot of confidence to walk over a variety of rugged terrain.

2.      The Ruins of Aleria

The capital of ancient Corsica was established in the 6th century B.C. by the Phocians after they were chased from the homeland by the Persians. They were subsequently conquered by the Romans in 259 B.C.; an easy feat considering the site is directly across the sea from Rome itself. In 1730 the city was captured by the troops of Pascal Paoli, who landed here in 1936 and crowned himself King of Corsica. The city was then lost and would only be rediscovered again between 1920 and 1951; archaeological digs continue to this day and have led to the discovery of a great many everyday objects: weapons, crockery, Etruscan vases, and money.

3.     Pinia

Known for its calm seas all year-long, Pinia is a famous spot for families to relax and enjoy the sun without much worry for their younger children frolicking by the beach. Surrounded by pine trees of the forest that is also named Pinia, the fine sandy beach stretches out over several kilometers. When you find the beach all too crowded for your liking during high season it's easy to escape by disappearing into the neighboring forest and taking a walk over to the lake.

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3 Towns you should visit in Cinque Terre

3 Towns you should visit in Cinque Terre

There are lots to see in Cinque Terre, after all, it is literally mean "five lands" for the five villages of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare along the Northern West coast of Italy on the Mediterranean Sea. Besides the Amalfi Coast, Cinque Terre is one of the most popular stretches of the Italian Riviera. The five towns are full of colorful houses and vineyards that sit on steep terraces, harbors are filled with fishing boats, and trattorias turn out seafood specialties along with the Liguria region’s famous pesto sauce. Enjoy your visit to Cinque Terre by downloading the Cinque Terre Travel Guide and Offline Map.

1.      Riomaggiore

You've probably seen pictures of it all over social media, the colorful tower houses overlooking a quaint, sheltered beach. Yes, that's Riomaggiore and is the second largest town in Cinque Terre. Some of the places to visit are the Port of Riomaggiore, Church of San Giovanni, the Guardiola, and the Centre for Environmental Education and Naturalistic Observation. It's also known for its locally-produced wine and is the hometown of the Wine Cooperative of the Cinque Terre region. A notable feature is also the Riomaggiore castle, it was once used as a lookout for Saracen incursions, but now offers lodging and is open for events.

Cinque Terre Travel Guide for iPhone, iPad and iPod

2.      Manrola

Manrola might be one of the smallest towns, but it is rich in culture and is the oldest. This ancient Roman town is huddled atop a headland of dark rock. Asides from its picturesque beauty, it is known to attract visitors from all over Italy and the world for its Nativity scene with 300 life-sized statues made from recycled materials. The church that is dedicated to the Nativity was once used as a lookout tower.

3.      Monterosso

This town has one the of the more interesting architectures in the region. During the 11th century to protect the town from Saracen pirates and rival Pisans, fortifications were increased thus defending the people from attacks. Here' you'll find the Church of San Giovanni Battista and the Aurora Tower. The famous depiction of the Crucifixion by Van Dyck himself is housed in the monastery of Cappuccini, which is connected to the church of San Francesco.

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Best places to to put your feet on at the Amalfi Coast!

Best places to to put your feet on at the Amalfi Coast!

Italy has become one of Europe's most popular Summer destinations and with beauties like the Amalfi Coast, it's really no surprise as to why. With its steep, picturesque cliffs, and sparkling views that's been considered an outstanding example of a Mediterranean landscape by UNESCO, it has fast become one of Italy's most popular destinations. And you've probably seen it all over social media these days as there are picture perfect moments at every turn. Download the Amalfi Coast Travel Guide and Offline City Map and start planning your next Summer escapades.

1.      Positano

This famed Italian destination is every photographer and travel blogger's dream. The village is home to tiny, winding roads that run down to the sea and are lined with restaurants, shops, and a cascade of pastel-colored boutiques and hotels. It's the most photogenic town you'll ever see. Positano is a popular destination for couples looking for a romantic getaway as well as families and groups stopping through on day tours. Spend hours wandering the winding roads of the village and explore the beach path that hugs the mountainside and ends up at the watch tour castles. Every turn brings something new and exciting into view. As you meander through Positano, the charm of this otherworldly town is intoxicating.

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2.      Amalfi Cathedral

You might ask yourself why Amalfi, for such a small place, has its fair share of monuments, not least the spectacular cathedral. It was, of course, one of the four powerful Maritime Republics and established many commercial relationships not least with traders from the Orient. The Cathedral complex is formed of the 'Cloister of Paradise', the 'Basilica of the Crucifix', which houses the Museum, the 'Crypt of St. Andrew' and the Cathedral. Concealing the original Romanesque church, the Baroque interior we see today dates from the early 18th century as do a number of paintings celebrating St. Andrew. Look out for a canvas by Andrea D’Asta on the main altar showing St. Andrew on the Cross. Two superb antique granite columns from Paestum support the triumphal arch of the main apse.

Amalfi Coast Travel Guide for iPhone, iPad & AppleWatch

 

3.      Amalfi Paper Museum

Located in an ancient XIV century medieval paper-mill, along the road to the Ferriere Valley, Amalfi's Paper Museum is, no doubt, one of the most original museums on the Amalfi coast. It was founded in 1969 by Nicola Milano, owner of the paper-mill and member of one of the most famous families working in the paper production. It hosts machineries and instruments used in the ancient paper-mills. The ancient technologies, restored and active, reconstruct the entire production cycle of the paper. Among the century-old tools in the Museum it is possible to admire the ancient wooden mauls, operated by an hydraulic wheel, the press used to remove the water in excess from the paper, the continuous printing machine and the Dutch machine.

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Be Enticed with Bali, Indonesia’s Island Paradise

Be Enticed with Bali, Indonesia’s Island Paradise

The lush paradise of Bali is the most famous destination in Indonesia and here are the reasons why. And friendly reminder, download the Bali Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map beforehand so you can have an easier time exploring the island.

The Weather

Bali is heaven for people who love the sun. The island is located just eight degrees south of the equator which grants it the perfect tropical weather. The island enjoys an average of 12 to 13 hours of sunlight each day which makes it the ideal place for surfing, sunbathing, beach sports, and all other outdoor activities.

The Beaches

Bali is home to a variety of spellbindingly gorgeous beaches, and each one has its own distinct charm. The south side of the island is known for its sandy beaches, especially those in the Bukit peninsula that are hidden between limestone cliffs. The north side, on the other hand, is known for its remote beaches with calm waters that are perfect for soaking with the whole family.

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The Temples

There are numerous complexes of mystical temples spread throughout the island of Bali, from the highest peaks to the lowest seashores. These temples are ancient and serve as a window to Bali’s rich and intriguing past. Even more impressive is that these temples are still fully functional today and many of them are still being used for various events and festivities.

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Value for Money

Bali is one of the cheapest world-class destinations you can visit. Indonesia has continuously been plagued by inflation. It only takes one glance at the exchange rate to get a grasp of much devaluation the Indonesian rupiah (IDR), the Indonesian national currency, has suffered. Today, your 1 dollar can be exchanged for about 12,000 IRD. Yes, for a little over $83 you can be a millionaire in Indonesia. This pretty much means you can afford anything during your visit, from luxury lodging, to the best food, to the biggest shopping spree of your life. You can even go to the local street markets to utilize your haggling skills and get great stuff at insanely low prices.

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Top Attractions to Visit in Phuket, Thailand’s Largest and Most Popular Island

Top Attractions to Visit in Phuket, Thailand’s Largest and Most Popular Island

The island of Phuket has been heavily developed for tourism and has become a favorite destination for families thanks to the availability of generous group holiday packages. Here are the reasons why you need to check out Thailand’s most popular tourist destination. Get your Phuket Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map to help you out in planning your itinerary.

1.      Phang Nga Bay

Phang Nga Bay is famous for its towering limestone cliffs sticking out of the water but its most famous attraction is its Koh Ta-Pu. The charm and beauty of Koh Ta-Pu became world renowned when it was used as a major setting for the James Bond movie ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’. People started calling it James Bond Island ever since. If you love seeing different living creatures, the Phang Nga Bay Marine National Park will keep you enthralled with its numerous species of fish, amphibians, mangroves, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Swing by Koh Panyee, a Muslim fishing village impressively built entirely on stilts.

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2.      Old Phuket Town

The old Phuket Town is the place to go if you want to immerse yourself in the island’s culture. Phuket architecture, cuisine, clothing, and more were greatly influenced by Chinese and Indians as the island used to be a major trading stop between China and India. Arab, Malay, and Portuguese traders also frequented it and left their own influences. Phuket Town is the largest town in the province and boasts a great selection of restaurants and cafes as well as awesome markets.

3.      Buddhist Temples

There are 29 vibrant Buddhist temples spread across the island. Among these temples, the Wat Chalong is the most popular, attracting thousands of tourists each year. The temple features a 60-meter tall pagoda and numerous gilt statues of two venerable monks who saved hundreds in the Tin Miners Rebellion of 1876. Today, the temple is known as a place of healing for both body and soul.

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4.      Phi Phi Islands

The Phi Phi chain of six islands is one of most famous tourist spots in Thailand. Phi Phi’s white sandy beaches, turquoise blue waters, and intriguing rock formations have already been featured in countless local and international films. Take that ferry ride and enjoy ultimate relaxation in this exotic paradise.

 

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