Monthly Archives: February 2016

download (57)In Bordighera, the Gardens of Villa Hanbury created by Thomas Hanbury (a Londoner who made his fortune in Shanghai and fell in love with this part of the coast and its truly unique climate), sweep across the promontory of Mortola just a stone's throw from the hamlet of Latte di Ventimiglia. Their wholly strategic position is enhanced by the exceptionally varied panoramas set amidst lush green vegetation.

Here typically Mediterranean flora intermingles with a host of more exotic species, forming an outstanding collection of some six thousand plants, all of which are grown in the open air. The result is a piece of heaven on earth, a garden of wonders, the only botanical park of its kind in the world, a place where every single plant, shrub, hedge and flower is catalogued and marked.

The overall layout of the garden (which has been changed several times over the years to take account of new landscaping trends, contemporary tastes and the demands of botanical research) helped preserve the historic via Julia Augusta, one of the most important roads of its day (the best-kept part is still inside the garden) and preexisting main routes; all other paths through the garden were built crossways or lengthways to the originals. Still standing are the ancient retaining walls, esplanades and old brickwork boundary which separates the Villa from the sea.

Each level of the garden is linked with steps, ramps and sweeping, flowering staircases. By creating the gardens, the entire Hanbury family set out to preserve and encourage spontaneous local vegetation in the wilder, less accessible parts and, where necessary, thicken out the ranks of trees (every possible variety of pine, olives) and shrubs (myrtle, laurel, rosemary, broom). On the banks of the stream they planted oleanders; in the shadier and higher areas, wisteria and lilac; at the foot of the walls, passion-flowers and roses, ivy and begonias; on the terraces, tumbling geraniums and pelargoniums.

The south-facing part of the garden where the flower-beds are less ordered was embellished with agaves, aloes, opuntia, cacti, cereus, spurges and yuccas. The Hanburys also created a palm-grove, Australian forest and colour-themed gardens (pink, white, orange) filled with seasonal blooms and bordered with neat hedges. An orchard and citrus plantation were positioned amid beds of anemones, freesias, irises, crocuses, jonquils and squills so that the eye is drawn to them. Each level of the gardens was given an elegant finishing touch with the addition of sculptures, fountains, tubs, colonnades and pillars, amphorae, stone seats and temples.

The palazzo belonging to the MarchesiOrengo di Ventimiglia (the main building on the estate) was also left almost untouched. To make it more comfortable, the tower was raised to improve the view even further and new sections were added (the terraces, arched loggia and portico at the front of the house). Service buildings were positioned for different purposes: casa Bellini below the nurseries for staff; a cottage on the east bank of the stream (the Sorba) to house scientific experiments and the original site for Sir Thomas's archaeological finds; the gardeners' lodgings, cowshed, casa Natalini, stable, hayloft and custodians' house on level ground. To irrigate the gardens and plants, the family were forced to reshape the grounds and, at some cost, design a system to collect and distribute water. In an altruistic gesture, the Hanbury family donated the gardens to the people of Italy. Upkeep is now the responsibility of the Botanical Institute of the University of Genoa.

 

download (56)Without vacations life would just be a monotonous continuation of work. People would burn out and lives would be miserable. Everyone deserves a vacation every once in a while to break up the stress and responsibility of everyday life. Spending quality time with family and friends in a beautiful place is what life is all about. Once you've decided that you deserve a vacation it's just about finding the perfect spot to spend it in.

Many vacationers find themselves visiting the Island to spend this wonderful break from real life. It has a lot to offer, but people are most drawn to it for the following:

Climate: Although summers are hot, the ocean air brings a welcome breeze to keep people comfortable making the climate on the area ideal! Winters are also mild and there are fewer visitors making the whole island a little more relaxing.

The Villas: Comfortable and convenient, the villas house delighting restaurants, clothes stores, grocery shops, and all other necessities you might need. They provide a quaint environment for any shopping and leisure you might enjoy.

Gaming activities: The area has enough activities to keep their visitors occupied all vacation long. They offer groomed gold courses and well maintained tennis courts along with world class clinics run by professional coaches. For a more all-encompassing activity there are walking and cycling tours to keep you active while sight-seeing the beauty of the island.

Beauty: Along with non-stop activities, there are also plenty of opportunities to relax and unwind amongst the natural beauty. With the wide range of long and amazing beaches, the island stands a perfect place to just soak in the natural beauty around you. The sand, salted lagoons, and marshes compose the pleasant and calm surroundings that will ease your mind and stay in your memory forever.

Activities galore on an island of unrelenting beauty, what more could there be? The island also offers something that no other vacation destination can offer; the one of a kind culture and history of the Gullah people. The Gullah Geechee people were brought to the area centuries ago as slaves from West Africa and stayed on the island after they were given their freedom. They were cut off from the mainland for years until a bridge was built. For this reason their culture has stayed well preserved from modern influences. Their culture is unique and by visiting the area you can experience how they live first hand by taking a tour.

Whether it's this vacation or the next, make the Island a destination to visit in your lifetime. There is no place like it and with a tour you can experience the very best of it.

 

download (55)Choosing the perfect place to visit is challenging since there are many enticing places to see. Several countries highlight their elegant architecture, delectable cuisine, booming markets and popular destinations. Finding the best attractions involve your budget and preference.

Great places for a holiday should allow you to spend exciting activities throughout the day. People on the lookout for a tour at nearby or far places must consider these destinations:

• Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona is a city, which attracts different types of travellers. You can roam the narrow alleys and streets in Las Ramblas, which is the centre of events in the city. The stretch thrives with numerous markets, pubs, and restaurants. You can even watch talented street performers as you take a sip of wine at a café. The city is the home of the renowned Spanish Architect, Antoni Gaudi. He designed iconic structures in the city such as the Church of the Sacred Family.

• Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, has preserved historic monuments and classical architecture. The city's famous travel destinations include Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, lakes, pagodas, parks, and temples, which you can access via a taxi.

• Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a territory, which features a unique skyline and tasty dim sum. You will marvel at the urban landscape of towering skyscrapers and lush gardens. The British and Chinese culture collides to make it a world-class metropolitan area.

• London

London showcases historical sites and contemporary attractions. History fuses with food, fashion and arts. Culture enthusiasts will delight in the Royal Opera House and Tate Modern. For fashion aficionados, you can check Oxford Street for the latest collection. If you are fond of books and music, do not miss the Sherlock Homes Museum and Abbey Road.

• Istanbul, Turkey

Travellers are absorbed with colourful bazaar, grand castles, historical mosques, and Turkish baths. You should not fail to visit the famous blue mosque or the Sultan Ahmet Camii. Take a leisurely stroll along the Galata Bridge and visit the Miniature Park, which displays impressive small artifacts.

• New York City, United States of America

Travellers are drawn to New York's bustling metropolis. The must-see attractions include the Central Park, the Empire State Building, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Statue of Liberty. Amid the high-rise building, you will discover the rich culture of the area. New York is dubbed as the most famous city in America and the leader in arts, fashion, and food. You should also watch popular shows on Broadway. The Big Apple offers endless adventures that will occupy your stay in the city.

• Paris, France

You will be in awe with the structures such as Arch de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower. Tourists frequent the city because of its romantic ambiance. The place contains fascinating museums, ancient churches, and Neoclassical architecture.

• Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is a flourishing city that draws more visitors every year. It is a historical landmark, which survived conquerors, floods and fires. Visitors are enchanted with its historical churches, royal castles, and fortified bridges. The city was once a concealed haven of wonders, but has now transformed into a favourite destination.

• Rome, Italy

Rome is a timeless city, which prides itself in open markets, and ancient structures. You can check the Trevi Fountain, Colloseum and the Pantheon. Savor the special pasta, sumptuous oxtail stew, Italian espresso and gelato.

Always remember that the best vacation will let you have fun. You should gather complete details about the place you intend to visit. Plan your tour well, so you can maximize the experience that the country can offer.

 

download (54)The honeymoon is a celebration to mark a couple's union. Hence, they carefully choose among ideal destinations. They decide based from their personal considerations such as finances, interests and location. They plan the occasion to ensure an enjoyable, unforgettable, and romantic experience.

If you want a remarkable event, here is the list of the best attractions you can consider:

• Hawaii

Newlyweds consider Hawaii as the top destination for their after wedding vacation. The place provides a perfect setting for a memorable adventure. It features many tropical sights such as magnificent waterfalls and beautiful beaches. Couples can explore the islands of Kauai, Lanai, Maui, and Molokai. They will never run out of things to do such as watch the sunrise, admire the sunset, and sail along the coastline.

• Fiji

Fiji is an island paradise often considered as the new Garden of Eden. The island displays a diverse collection of fauna and flora, hot springs, and fine beaches. Couples can follow the trails leading to the stunning landscape of the island. In addition, they can go to the nearby villages and discover their culture.

• Italy

Italy is a favourite post-wedding holiday spot. You will be fascinated with the intricate designs of the buildings in the cities of Florence, Rome, and Venice. You can embark on romantic adventures as you ride the gondola along the Grand Canal, go on a cruise to one of the nearby islands, or just take a leisurely walk in Piazza San Marco.

• Paris, France

Paris is often hailed as the city of romance and boasts of its striking architecture, great art and superb food. Other places in the city include the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Palais, Jardin des Tuileries, the Musee du Louvre, and Pont des Art Bridge. Instead of lovelocks, you can tie a ribbon at Pont des Art Bridge to affirm your strong commitment to each other.

• Phuket, Thailand

Couples will be captivated with the breathtaking beauty of this island. They can experience the white sands, clear water, and spectacular sunsets. Although it is an exotic island, it is a venue of lively nightlife and fine restaurants. The dining places offer excellent local Thai cuisine. Couples will surely enjoy the leisurely boat ride going to Phi Phi islands and the traditional Thai massage. Moreover, they can take a time off from the beach by visiting historical places such as Buddhist shrines.

• Santorini, Greece

Santorini is an island situated in the Aegean Sea. Together, you can admire the amazing sunset and brilliant white villas. You can visit its sun-drenched beaches, posh shops, historical sites, and wine cellars.

• St. Bart's

It is an expensive and famous attraction in the Caribbean. Couples can visit the Colombier beach, which is famous for its vivid aquamarine colour and fine white sand.

• St. Lucia

This is a group of islands in the Caribbean, which is one of the top choices for honeymoon destinations. You can spend your day on any of the islands where you can play various water activities and sports together. The friendly local staff will help you appreciate the wonders of their islands.

The best honeymoon destinations will allow you to spend time with your partner. Take advantage of the precious moment to have fun and build memories together.