• Share
  • Email
  • Embed
  • Like
  • Save
  • Private Content
dynami Bucket List (Worldwide)
 

dynami Bucket List (Worldwide)

on

  • 2,091 views

 

Statistics

Views

Total Views
2,091
Views on SlideShare
2,070
Embed Views
21

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
3
Comments
0

3 Embeds 21

http://www.linkedin.com 15
http://www.lmodules.com 4
https://www.linkedin.com 2

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Adobe PDF

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

    dynami Bucket List (Worldwide) dynami Bucket List (Worldwide) Document Transcript

    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- dYNAMI BUCKET LIST” dynami’s divine secret: Unique Hot Spots Worldwide (newest additions) Table of Contents North America……………......…………………………………....................................................... 2 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination………………………………………………………………………… 2 Most Unusual …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 4 Natural Wonders/ Sights to See……………………………………………………………………………………. 5 Best Activity…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6 Latin America & Caribbean…………………………….…….......................................………… 7 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination……………………………………………………………………….. 7 Most Unusual…………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 10 Natural Wonders/Sights to See……………………………………………………………………………………. 14 Best Activity…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 16 Asia ……………………………………………………………...............……………….……………...…....... 17 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination……………………………………………………………………….. 17 Most Unusual…………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 23 Natural Wonders/ Sights to See……………………………………………………………………………………. 27 Best Activity…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 30 Africa…………………………………………………………………………….…………………………………… 32 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination………………………………………………………………………… 32 Most Unusual……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 33 Natural Wonders/ Sights to See…………………………………………………………………………………….. 34 Best Activity……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 36 Europe……………………………………….……………..……….…….......................................………… 37 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination……………………………………………………………………….. 37 Most Unusual…………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 42 Natural Wonders/Sights to See……………………………………………………………………………………. 47 Best Activity…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 51 Oceania……………………………………..……………………….…….......................................………… 53 Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination……………………………………………………………………….. 53 Most Unusual…………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 54 Natural Wonders/Sights to See……………………………………………………………………………………. 55 Best Activity…………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 57 Most Scenic and Luxurious Train Trip..…………………………………….....……..…………………….. ….. 58 Best Cruise Experience……………………………………………………………......…...………………………. 59 Interactive World Map………………………………………………………………...….…............................. 60 dynami Services and Contact Information……………………………………….…………………………….. 61
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- North America
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: ---North America--- New York *Crosby Street Hotel, New York http://www.firmdale.com/ *The Standard, Manhattan, New York http://www.standardhotels.com/new-york-city/ California *Millennium Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles, California http://www.millenniumhotels.com/millenniumlosangeles/index.html This octogenarian grande dame has never looked more beautiful—although, she’s had some work done. The hotel’s 1923 Italian-Spanish Renaissance interiors are textbook elegant, with refurbished hand-carved wood detailing, ornate gilded ceilings, and magnificent chandeliers. Indulge in pure elegance at the Club Level (just an additional $50). ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you’ve imagined.” ~Thoreau 3
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Maine *The White Barn Inn, Kennebunk, Maine http://www.whitebarninn.com/ The White Barn Inn & Spa is an award- winning hotel, restaurant and spa that has been a landmark in Kennebunk, Maine for 150 years. It is part of the exclusive Relais & Châteaux collection of the finest hotels and gourmet restaurants in the world. The White Barn Inn was voted one of the Top 20 Hideaways in the United States in the Andrew Harper’s Hideaway Report 2008 Readers’ Choice Survey and has been described by Condé Nast Traveler as “One of the great places to stay and eat in the world”. Florida *The Setai, Miami http://www.setai.com/ Managed by Adrian Zecha's GHM group, the oceanfront Setai is one of the most luxurious and beautiful hotels on South Beach. A sleek Asian look (the brick, bronze and teak lobby is particularly beautiful) has been fused with high-octane Miami style to spectacular effect. North Carolina *Grove Park Inn, Asheville, North Carolina http://www.groveparkinn.com/Leisure/ Most Unusual: ---North America--- New York *Casablanca Hotel, New York www.casablancahotel.com Ever wanted to live like Bogey? The 48-room Casablanca Hotel in Times Square features a Moroccan décor complemented by Rick's Café, named for the restaurant in the classic 1942 film featuring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. Rates, ranging from $219 to $459, include continental breakfast and wine each afternoon. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -“Knowledge is the treasure of a wise man” ~William Penn 4
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Library Hotel, New York www.libraryhotel.com Appropriately located near the New York Public Library, the hotel has 60 rooms on 10 floors. Each floor is designed after one of the ten categories of the Dewey Decimal System, such as Math and Science and Religion, and each room houses part of the hotel's collection of 6,000 books. Rates range from $279 to $525 a night. Canada *Ice Hotel, Quebec, Canada www.icehotel-canada.com The Ice Hotel is created anew each year out of 15,000 pounds of snow and 500 pounds of ice. The 34-room hotel features an ice chapel, two art galleries and a host of outdoor activities. The temperature inside the hotel ranges from 23 to 28 degrees Fahrenheit and the beds are carved from ice. Vermont *The Pitcher Inn, Warren, Vermont www.pitcherinn.com The nine rooms and two suites at The Pitcher Inn, also built by the Smith family, are designed on themes such as "School," "Trout" and "Calvin Coolidge." We're not just talking variations in wallpaper--the "Stable" suite has a hay chute opening into it. Guests don't rough it, however. The inn is a Relais and Chateaux property, and it includes a spa and dining room that uses fresh local and regional ingredients. Rates range from $350 to $700 a night. New Mexico *Kokopelli’s Cave, New Mexico http://www.ultimathulelodge.com/ Located north of Farmington, New Mexico, close to the Mesa Verde National Park, guests at Kokopelli’s Cave can enjoy views over four American states. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Go for long walks, indulge in hot baths. Question your assumptions, be kind to yourself, live for the moment, loosen up, scream, curse the world, count your blessings, just let go, just be.” ~Carol Shields 5
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---North America--- Montana *Glacier National Park, Montana http://www.nps.gov/glac/index.htm You’ll spend 6-days in the park hiking through cedar forests, biking alongside alpine mountains, and sleeping in timber lodges that date to 1913. Half-day walks pass through the Two Medicine area (site of the 30-foot-high Twin Falls and mountain-shadowed Two Medicine Lake) and the North Fork area, home to mountain lions, bighorn sheep, black bears, and moose. The guide to provide you knowledge on the local ecosystem and the professional outdoor photographer to instruct on how to shoot the perfect panoramic photo http://www.austinlehman.com Canada *Canadian Rockies, Canada http://www.canadianrockies.com/ The Canadian Rockies house five national parks, out of which four of them along with other provincial parks form a combination of a single UNESCO World Heritage Site that consists of beautiful mountain landscapes, lakes, canyons, waterfalls, glaciers, peaks, limestone caves as well as fossils. Mount Robson is the highest peak of the Canadian Rockies and climbing it is considered a challenge. These beautiful mountains are a haven for hikers and walkers alike. *Cathedral Grove, MacMillan Provincial Park, Canada Cathedral Grove is living proof that a beautiful rainforest isn’t necessarily difficult to find. Part of Vancouver Island’s MacMillan Provincial Park, it is essentially a stand of giant Douglass fir trees, some of which are, astoundingly, more than 800 years old. You’ll find ancient Western red cedar trees in this old-growth coastal forest, too. You might spot black bears, woodpeckers and cougars, too. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “In the path of our happiness shall we find the learning for which we have chosen this lifetime.” ~Richard Bach 6
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- New York *DessertTruck, New York Hawaii *Hana Rainforest, Maui, Hawaii *Koke’e State Park, Kauai, Hawaii New York: Context Travel & Big Onion Walking Tour Best Activity Boston: Boston By Foot New Orleans: Gray Line Tours San Francisco: San Francisco Walking Tours ---North America--- Canada *Western Canada Tour Take a greatest-hits tour of British Columbia and Alberta’s rugged wilderness. Stay in a tepee and a mountain lodge. http://www.apadventures.com Pennsylvania *Walking Tour of Philadelphia http://www.preservationalliance.com/events/walking_tours_descriptions.php Philadelphia was born to be a walking city. Four centuries of architecture spread themselves out in a wide swath of blocks between two rivers, and because original city planners such as William Penn set out to build a “green country towne,” five of the major squares are city parks. California *Napa and Sonoma’s Vespa Tours http://www.winecountryvespa.com/ Imagine a drive down a two-lane road through golden hills and river valleys on a retro Vespa, followed by private wine tastings and games of boccie ball. Wine Country Vespa tours (two-day tours from $1,000 per person, all-inclusive); ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” ~Leonardo da Vinci 7
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Latin America & Caribbean
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: ---Latin America & Caribbean--- Argentina *Alvear Palace Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina http://www.alvearpalace.com/v3/eng/ Major renovations in 2008 Dominican Republic *Paradisus Palma Real, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic http://www.paradisus.com/paradisus-palma-real.php West Indies *Laluna, Morne Rouge, Grenada http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/caribbean/grenada/morne_rouge/laluna_morne_rouge Laluna is a discreet, romantic hideaway quietly nestled on ten acres of untouched land. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ “Behold this day for it is yours to make.” ~Black Elk 9
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Costa Rica *Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation & Inn, Santa Barbara, Costa Rica http://www.fincarosablanca.com/ Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation and Inn is an organic shade grown coffee plantation with a world class 13 room Inn located in the middle of lush colorful gardens framed by awe inspiring views of the Central Valley below. The recipient of numerous awards and accolades for its extraordinary quality and as a global leader in responsible tourism, Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation and Inn is the perfect choice for discerning and knowledgeable travelers who want to combine luxury with certified sustainability. *Four Seasons Resort, Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica http://www.fourseasons.com/costarica/ Bill Gates has been seen frequenting here. Jamaica *Round Hill Hotel and Villas, Montego Bay, Jamaica http://www.roundhilljamaica.com/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Whatever you are, be a good one.” ~Abraham Lincoln 10
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Brazil *Fasano, Sáo Paulo, Brazil http://www.fasano.com.br/site_hoteis_en.php The most elegant hotel in São Paulo has been a long-nurtured dream of the Fasano family, who for over a century devotes itself to providing the best in Italian cuisine with outstanding service. Ideally located between the business districts of Avenida Paulista and Faria Lima, in the heart of the exclusive Jardins neighborhood, the hotel is steps away from São Paulo’s prime shopping area. St. Barts *Saint-Barth Isle de France, St. Barts http://www.isle-de- france.com/ Overlooking Flamands Bay, one of the island's most beautiful beaches, this small, privately owned resort has a chic, beach-house elegance. Designed Try restaurant Wishing Well, Chez by Penny Morrison of Morrison Interiors, the breezy interiors have a relaxed, Rolande on St. Barts. Ms. Rolande sophisticated feel that sits perfectly with the island's upmarket charm. There are 37 light and airy rooms, suites, villas and bungalows, some set in serves real creole food with style gardens on the hillside, others on the beach, all with patios or terraces. and subtlety—try the fragrant lobster. ~Condé Nast Traveller Turks & Caicos *Gansevoort, Turks & Caicos http://www.gansevoortturksandcaicos.com/ The island of Providenciales (‘Provo’) is home to Gansevoort Turks + Caicos, an opulent escape from civilization located on 400 feet of the purest white sand in the Caribbean. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away.” ~Anonymous 11
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- British Virgin Islands *Peter Island Resort http://www.peterisland.com/ Sugary sand beaches. Whispering breezes. Tranquil, turquoise waters.Experience a private island paradise that is truly unique. Try Mango Tree, a lolo, or roadside stand, outside Basseterre. Conde Nast Traveler votes it as their Favorite Mexico Restaurant Worldwide and best stewed goat in the islands. *La Casa Que Canta, Zihuatanejo, Mexico http://www.lacasaquecanta.com/ If every resort looked like this, it would be singing too, La Casa Que Canta (Spanish for the Singing House) sits high over the water, cut into a Cliffside above Zihuatanejo Bay, offering an extraordinary sea view as well as a splendid sense of seclusion, and classic traditional architecture and outstanding service combine to create a sort of private hacienda atmosphere. *Four Seasons Resort, Punta Mita, Mexico http://www.fourseasons.com/puntamita/ Did you know...The word Mita has been traced back to ancient Aztec language as meaning "Gateway to Paradise"? Most Unusual ---Latin America & Caribbean--- Chile *Magic Mountain Hotel, Panguipulli, Region X, Chile http://www.uhotw.com Or how about a stay underneath a cascading waterfall on a fairytale mountain that, legend has it, can grant you wishes? An aerial ropeway takes you between tree-tops in the surrounding forest canopy. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Never never never give up.” ~Winston Churchill 12
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jamaica *The Cave Resort, Jamaica http://www.mondrianscottsdale.com/#/home/ Drawing inspiration from the Garden of Eden, designer Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz has created a unique sybaritic retreat . . .his thoughtful interpretation reflects the youthful spirit of the thriving city of Scottsdale, while celebrating the senses with luxury, indulgence, and amusement. Mexico *Quinta Real Zacateca, Zacatecas, Mexico http://www.quintareal.com/eng/idt/120/quinta-real-zacatecas/4-2- 5,5-8-28/ It seems so obvious--once a bullring, now a luxury hotel. Hotel Quinta Real Zacatecas is built around a 17th century arena. The beds are situated under stone and wooden arches, and several overlook the main Plaza de Toros. The cellar bar is in the old bull corrals. Rooms include amenities like satellite television and Jacuzzi baths. Rates range from $167 to over $900 per night. Costa Rica *Hotel Costa Verde, Costa Rica www.costaverde.com Crash in a jet plane: Near a beach that's within Manuel Antonio National Park, the Hotel Costa Verde doesn't lack for great sights. But few are as amazing as its own 727 Fuselage Suite, a salvaged 1965 Boeing 727-100 that looks as if it's crashed into the Costa Rican jungle (it's actually mounted atop a 50-foot pillar and reached via a spiral staircase). ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Look to this day for it is life. In its brief course lie all the realities and truths of existence, the joy of growth, the glory of action, the splendor of beauty . . . today well lived makes every yesterday a memory of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well, therefore, to this day . . .” ~Ancient Sanskrit Proverb 13
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Brazil * Hotel Unique, Sao Paulo, Brazil http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/americas/brazil/sao_paulo/hotel_unique A reference in modern architecture and originality, Unique's spacey, green copper façade alone makes this hotel unlike any other. Located in the well-heeled residential area of Jardins, and just meters from Ibirapuera Park, São Paulo's largest green area, the building rises like a gracious ocean liner in dry-dock. Shielding dark glass and a desert garden of mini, sand-toned cubes of rock, palms and agaves are the first impressions that the hotel offers. *Ariau Towers Hotel, Brazil www.ariauamazontowers.com Not for the acrophobic, this hotel lets you sleep in the treetops of the Amazon Rainforest. "Tarzan's house," for example, is perched on stilts, 80 feet above ground. Situated on the bank of the Negro River, Ariau's apartments, suites and tree houses are linked by a series of catwalks. Rates start at $280 per night and include meals and tours. *Exploranter Overland Hotel, Brazil www.exploranter.com On the road again: Imagine how much ground you could cover if you took your bed with you. That's the idea behind Exploranter Overland Hotel, a converted 25-ton truck that's a true hotel on wheels. An awning extends out from the truck's side to provide some al fresco shade at lunchtime. The "kitchen" comes tricked out with fridges, freezers, and a large convection oven — on this trip, the restaurant comes with you too, and sometimes nearby cooks are brought in to give guests a taste of the local cuisine. Your luggage and sleeping quarters are towed behind you, in a trailer that sleeps up to 24. With so much flexibility, guests can see Brazil's back country, far from crowds and sometimes any other people at all. The tours, which last from three days up to three months or more, have included horseback riding, vineyard tours, bird watching, and rodeos. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Wherever you are it is your friends who make your world . . .” ~William James 14
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---Latin America & Caribbean--- *Amazon Rainforest, Amazon Basin, South America http://www.amazon-rainforest.org/tourism.html Amazon rainforest is the thickest rainforest that spans over a billion acres and encompasses areas in Brazil (60%), Peru (13%), Venezuela, Columbia, Ecuador, Guyana, Bolivia, French Guiana and Suriname. The concentration of wildlife is very high and new species or subspecies of existing species continues to be discovered almost all the time. The majestic beauty and timelessness of this awe-inspiring tropical rainforest is indescribable in words and should be experienced. Brazil *Amazon, Brazil, South America http://www.nature.org/wherewework/southamerica/brazil/work/art5079.html Among rainforests, the Amazon reigns supreme: It comprises some 1.4 billion acres, predominantly in Brazil but including parts of eight other nations. A fifth of the world’s birds and a tenth of all species on the planet live in this steamy realm, where a single square mile can pack upwards of 75,000 different types of trees. From over a hundred types of frogs to piranhas, electric eels, pink dolphins and clangorous scarlet macaws, Amazonia is the zenith of Earth’s biodiversity. While deforestation continues, sustainable tourism can foster conservation efforts. Tour operators such as National Geographic Expeditions and Abercrombie & Kent offer Amazon River cruises. *Iguazu Waterfalls, Argentina-Brazil Border http://www.enjoy- argentina.org/iguazu.php Heralded as the most beautiful waterfalls in the world, the Iguazu Waterfalls are a true wonder of nature. They are located at the border of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. While the Argentinean side allows visitors to walk right around the water or explore the National Park; the Brazilian side is known for its panoramic views and splendor. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail.” ~Unknown 15
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Rio De Janeiro, Brazil http://www.lonelyplanet.com/brazil/rio-de-janeiro Meaning River of January, the city of Rio is situated between the Serra da Bocaina mountains and the sea. It is filled with natural beauty characterized by marked contrasts; spectacular mountains, sparkling sea and lush forests, which form a landscape picture of rare beauty. The two beautiful and the most famous vantage points are mountains Pão de Acúcar (Sugarloaf) and Corcovado, atop which there is a large statue of Christ the redeemer, which is world famous. The tropical rain forest is all around the place and covers hillsides beautifully. The dramatic setting framed by miles and miles of dazzling beaches and jungle vegetation is unparalleled. Don’t forget the “caipirinha!” Belize *Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize http://www.travelbelize.org/attractions/rainforest- inland/cockscomb-basin-wildlife-sanctuary-4.html Costa Rica *Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, Costa Rica http://www.monteverdeinfo.com/ ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.” ~Unknown 16
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Venezuela *Angel Falls, Venezuela http://www.vivatravelguides.com/south-america/venezuela/angel-falls/ Angel Falls is a staggeringly beautiful place. Located in the middle of dense rainforests, the sound of the water falling down can be heard from a kilometer. The stream of water is very powerful at the top but with the length of the drop being very huge, most of the water turns into mist before reaching the ground. Best Activity: ---Latin America & Caribbean--- Argentina *Tour of Argentine Patagonia’s Lake District, Patagonia, Argentina http://www.rei.com/adventures/trips/latin/argentina.html *Watch a world class Tango performance in Buenos Aires, Argentina http://www.teatrocolon.org.ar/ Costa Rica *Costa Rica’s Eco-luxe Spas http://www.tabacon.com/ Aruba *”Snuba” or Sea Trek on the floor of the ocean of Aruba http://www.depalm.com/de_palm_island/escape_route.html ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Dance as though no one is watching you, love as though you have never been hurt before, sing as though no one can hear you, live as though heaven is on earth.” ~Souza 17
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Asia
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: ---Asia--- China *Commune by the Great Wall, China http://www.communebythegreatwall.com/ One of the most aesthetically dramatic properties in China, the Commune by the Great Wall has lodgings created by some of Asia’s best contemporary architects—set right alongside the most stupendous building project of the ancient world. *The Peninsula, Hong Kong, China http://www.peninsula.com/Peninsula_Hotels/en/default.aspx#/Hong_Kong/en/ Since 1928, this Hong Kong institution has defined the luxury hotel experience, and although certain kinds of travelers (especially lovers of sleek, high-tech minimalism) may find the Peninsula too old-world, there’s no denying it’s a serious class act. *The Lalu, Nantou County, Taiwan, China http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/taiwan/nantou/the_lalu The Lalu overlooks a panorama of the mystical Sun Moon Lake and is named after the indigenous Shao aboriginal settlement that was located on its site. Once the favourite summer getaway of President Chiang Kai Shek, the hotel dates back to 1901. Recent renovations and additions by Kerry Hill Architects have resurrected the property to an new international level - a first for this part of the world. Indonesia *Uma Ubud, Bali, Indonesia http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/indonesia/bali/uma_ubud The Uma Ubud is a cliff-top Indonesian resort located in the heart of Bali. Its 24 rooms all come with either terrace or courtyard gardens, and three of its four Uma Suites come with private, infinity-edge pools. Uma Ubud is located in the centre of Bali. This extraordinary Indonesian island is spliced by a volcanic mountain chain which divides the quiet north coast, where the foothills fall into the Bali Sea, from the busy south coast, where fertile rice paddies sloped gently down towards the Indian Ocean. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Do one thing every day that scares you.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt 19
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Alila Manggis, East Bali, Indonesia http://www.designhotels.com/private_spaces/alila_manggis Head away from the crowds for the unspoilt east coast of Bali to Alila Manggis, where modern European shapes meet open, tropical design. Demonstrating creative function, elegant luxury and pure well-being, outdoors meets indoors throughout the resort, comprised of four two-story buildings built around a palm-fringed pool with perfect ocean views, simple forms and Balinese touches. *Alila Ubud, Bali, Indonesia http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/indonesia/bali/alilaubud If you were to rank the 50 most beautiful hotel swimming pools in the world, then the Alila Ubud would be right up there at the top. Moving from the pool bar into the cool depths, the water's surface seems to flow endlessly through the terraced jungle and reach up to the sky. The resort's rooms and suite villas stand above a ravine on stilts like treehouses. The architecture makes use of traditional Balinese design, but it is transformed into a strict modern geometry. Smooth plaster walls and concrete meet with straw roofs; terracotta tiles meet gravel or crushed rock; wood meets glass. *The Bulgari, Bali, Indonesia http://www.bulgarihotels.com/home.html?param_id_lingua=1 Blending the traditional Balinese style with contemporary Italian design, the Bulgari Resort in Bali is located near the village of Pecatu and the stunning clifftop site of the Pura Luhur Uluwatu Temple, on the island’s far southwestern tip. Uniquely positioned at more than 150 metres above the sea shore, the resort offers unrivalled views across the Indian Ocean. Nestled between the cliff and the ocean, a 1.5 kilometer long beach is accessible only through the resort’s inclined elevator. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Travel is one way of lengthening life.” ~Benjamin Franklin 20
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thailand *The Library, Koh Samui, Thailand http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/thailand/koh_samui/the_library An elegant minimalist structure set a lush environment on Thailand’s Chaweng Beach in Koh Samui, The Library helps preserve coastal heritage property, while impacting minimally on its ecology. Divided into 26 suite/studio cabins, the complex avoids the monolithic hotel-complex look, scattering discreet buildings in lush vegetation. The purity pays off: the old-growth forest and lively beach are there to be enjoyed without distraction. *Metropolitan Bangkok, Bangkok, Thailand http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/thailand/bangkok/metropolitan_bangkok A peaceful retreat in the middle of one of Bangkok’s most bustling neighbourhoods, Metropolitan Bangkok is perfect for those in search of both relaxation and high-class, cosmopolitan living. The hotel’s modern, East-meets-West design encapsulates this dualism, featuring calm, Zen-like spaces in equal measure with sleek, sophisticated ones. 171 rooms and suites ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Get up and out – The Day is bursting with moments.” ~Tagore 21
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Mandarin Oriental Dhara Dhevi, Chiang Mai, Thailand http://www.mandarinoriental.com/chiangmai/ By blending architectural influences from Burma to Laos - and medieval Chiang Mai - local architect Rachen Intawong has created a stunning resort. The Mandalay Palace-style spa, with its striking, seven-tiered roof representing the seven steps to nirvana, is serenely beautiful. *Anantara Baan Rajprasong Serviced Suites, Bangkok, Thailand http://rajprasong-bangkok.anantara.com/ Situated in the centre of vibrant Bangkok, surrounded by lush parks dotted with lakes, Anantara Baan Rajprasong Serviced Suites Bangkok, Thailand offers short- and long-term sophisticated stays in the city's most exclusive neighbourhood. Venture out onto stylish Lang Suan or vibrant Sukhumvit just around the corner - the city is literally at your doorstep. *Aleenta, Thailand *Amari Emerald Cove Resort & Spa, Thailand *Anantara Resort Koh Samui, Thailand *Sala Samui Resort & Spa, Thailand *Sila Evason Hideaway & Spa at Samui, Thailand *Veranda Resort & Spa, Thailand ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” ~Buddha 22
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Laos *3 Nagas by Alila, Luang Prabang, Laos http://www.alilahotels.com/3nagas It’s not everyday that one can call a UNESCO World Heritage site "home". But at the 3 Nagas by Alila, guests can do precisely that. Each individually-designed room at 3 Nagas has a distinctive character of its own, but all are unified by certain shared elements: exotic wood floors and furniture, traditional "torchis" walls, clay-tile roofs, silk fabrics, traditional weavings, king-sized beds, sofas and wireless Internet. Vietnam *Evason Ana Mandara & Six Senses Spa, Nha Trang, Vietnam http://www.sixsenses.com/Evason-Ana-Mandara-Nha-Trang/ Inspired by Vietnamese villages, the resort is designed to blend into the beautiful grounds, which are maintained by five full-time gardeners. The spa’s setting is particularly beautiful, with coconut trees and lotus ponds. The exclusive location of Evason Ana Mandara affords city-centre access to Nha Trang’s only beachfront resort. It is surrounded by private tropical gardens, offering simplicity, serenity and refinement together with spectacular views of Nha Trang Bay. United Arab Emirates *Burj al Arab, Dubai, United Arab Emirates http://www.jumeirah.com/en/Hotels- and-Resorts/Destinations/Dubai/Burj-Al- Arab/The-Resort/ A Billowing Sail-shaped Structure Soaring 321 Metres Above The Arabian Gulf Burj Al Arab Is A Dramatic Tribute To The Regions Seafaring Heritage. Combining The Latest Technology With A Long-standing Reputation Of Arabian Hospitality The Hotel Symbolizes The Very Essence Of Dubai Embracing The Best Of New Alongside Traditions Of The Past. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never ever the same.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt 23
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- India *Rambagh Palace, Jaipur, India http://www.tajhotels.com/Palace/RAMBAGH%20PALACE,JAIPUR/default.htm The ‘Jewel of Jaipur’ as it is fondly called, remained the home of the Jaipur royal family until 1957, when it was first converted into a luxury hotel by Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II. But it wasn’t until 1972 that Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces took over the reins. It is now the ‘jewel in the crown’ among the authentic palaces of the Taj in India. Maldives *Alila Villas Hadahaa, Gaafu Alifu Atoll, Maldives http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/maldives/north_huvadhoo_atoll/alila_villas_hadahaa The Alila Villas Hadahaa resort, set on the tropical island of Hadahaa in the North Huvadhoo Atoll, is believed to be one of the largest and deepest natural Atolls in the world. Surrounded by a vast expanse of sea, this all-villa resort offers the ultimate Maldivian experience, with turquoise-azure waters and fine white beaches complementing the tranquil setting. Guests at the resort can choose from one of 14 stilted, over-water Aqua Villas or 36 Island Villas, 20 of which come with private pool. *Kuredu Island Resort, Lhaviyani Atoll, Maldives http://www.kuredu.com/ Exotic, thatched bungalows and spacious villas accommodate our guests. Bungalows and Villas line the white sand beach, while Sangu Sunset Water Villas are built on columns over the lagoon. *The Rania Experience, Maldives http://www.raniaexperience.com/lite/en/ *Soneva Gili Maldives, Maldives http://www.sixsenses.com/Soneva/index.php ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Come forth into the light of things, let nature be your teacher” ~William Wordsworth 24
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Bhutan *Uma Paro, Paro, Bhutan, South Asia http://www.uma.paro.como.bz/ The Uma Paro is 38 hilltop hectares of natural beauty, architectural sophistication and impeccable hotel service nestled in the heart of Bhutan’s Paro Valley. The resort’s 20 rooms and 9 villas with private spa are comfortable and spacious. The hotel is located on a 38-acre site atop a gently sloping tree-clad hill, overlooking the town of Paro in the valley below. The rich Paro valley is one of the main cultural centres of Bhutan situated towards its western border. It is also where the nation’s only airport is located. Most Unusual ---Asia--- Indonesia *Luna2 Private Hotel, Bali, Indonesia http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/indonesia/bali/luna2 Luna2 Private Hotel has "touched down" on the prime beachfront of Seminyak in Bali, making waves of its own with its retro-modernist design. Named after the first spacecraft to reach the moon in the late 1950s, the Richard Neutra-inspired architecture is the launch pad for owner and interior designer Melanie Hall's James Bond-esque interiors - a feast of funky 60's inspired custom-designed furnishings, paired with nostalgic design classics and 21st-century innovation. Extravagant to the last detail, Bisazza mosaics are featured throughout, even down to the base of the 20-metre pool, where Marilyn Monroe lies forever young in her renowned white dress. With just five bedrooms, Luna2 boasts supernaturally good service, within the privacy of a home. 5 rooms (only to be rented as a whole). ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “To laugh often and much . . . to appreciate beauty . . . to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded! ~ Emerson 25
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Kemang Icon by Alila, Jakarta, Indonesia http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/indonesia/jakarta/kemang_icon_by_alila From flavour of aromatherapy room scent to type of bed pillow, guests at this all-suite hotel can chose the hotel amenities that will best suit their individual needs and desires. Meals are prepared to specific culinary preferences, bathrooms are filled with personally-selected accessories and individually-designed rooms are chosen according to personal taste; nothing about the Kemang Icon is formulaic or impersonal. In addition to the eight Courtyard and four Edge Suites, the hotel offers a whole slew of impressive, inviting spaces for guests to enjoy. These include a 16-metre, rooftop infinity pool and sunbathing terrace, a multi-windowed yoga studio offering daily classes and 360-degree skyline views and a rooftop restaurant with alfresco, pool-side dining and much more! Tokyo *Hotel Everland, Toyko http://www.everland.ch/ Hotel Everland is a one-room inn that will be in Paris on the roof of the Palais de Tokyo museum through 2008. It offers heart-swelling views of the Seine, 100 feet below, and the Eiffel Tower, in the near distance. (Courtesy Hotel Everland) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp, Or what’s a heaven for? ~Robert Browning 26
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thailand *X2 Kui Buri, Kui Buri – Hua Hin, Thailand http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/thailand/kui_buri/x2_kui_buri Situated on eight acres of virgin beachfront on the Gulf of Thailand, the X2 Resort Kui Buri is unfussy yet luxurious, down- to-earth, yet upscale. To that effect, the X2 is laid out on an open plan dotted with spacious public areas so that guests are constantly navigating around and reminded of the environment around them. Beds are positioned towards floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open onto the beach, and clean, understated furniture – predominately pale wood or sleek black, white and grey – adds to the resort’s overall atmosphere of unpretentious sophistication. India *The Park New Delhi, New Delhi, India http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/india/new_delhi/park_new_delhi Updating Indian tradition with modern concepts of air and space, the Park New Delhi is a high-end destination of its own. The hotel was conceived around harmony between man and nature, based on a balance of the elements; that these elements are mixed in a manner redolent both of Indian tradition and modern minimalism is the triumph of designer Sir Terence Conran and Partners. The 224 guestrooms feature contrasting design touches: dark-timbered floors and pastel accents; on the two “Residence” floors, private Jacuzzis and 24-hour butler service live up to the highest standards of Indian hospitality. China *Hydropalace, Qingdao, China www.crescent- hydropolis.com The Hydropalace in Qingdao, China, will be anchored in the Yellow Sea in water that is 16 to 20 meters deep at low tide. Guests will arrive at the hotel by yacht, which will also go to a planned land- based hydrotower, scheduled to open for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run And climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche 27
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Vietnam *Hang Nga Guesthouse and Art Gallery http://unusuallife.com/2009/08/29/hang-nga-guesthouse-and-art-gallery/ The official name is Hang Nga Guesthouse and gallery, but all locals refer to it as the crazy house. And when you stand in front of its entrance it is easy to see why: this house is indeed strange. Each guest room is built around a different animal theme. Singapore *New Majestic Hotel, Singapore, Southeast Asia http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/asiapacific/singapore/singapore/new_majestic_hotel The "New Asia" style of hospitality finds one of its most One of a rarefied expressions in the New Majestic Hotel, located in kind! the heart of Singapore’s Chinatown…marriage of old and new, or "heritage chic"… Turkey *Serinn House, Turkey http://www.serinnhouse.com *The Marmara Antalya, Antalya, Turkey http://www.themarmarahotels.com/ This hotel features two dozen rooms in a building that slowly spins. Guests are rewarded with ever-changing views of the Mediterranean Sea. *Gamirasu Cave Hotel, Cappadocia, Turkey http://www.gamirasu.com/ "Truly a diamond in the rough of the valley…Gamirasu is one of the best unique hotels *Ellkep Evi, Turkey http://www.elkepevi.com of Turkey to stay ~Frommer’s Turkey Guide Also found in Cappadocia, Elkep Evi offers cave rooms with modern facilities on a hill overlooking the town of Urgup. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” ~Buddha 28
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---Asia--- Qatar *Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, Qatar http://mia.org.qa/ With a 4,500-work collection that spans 13 centuries and three continents, this ambitious new museum is setting a precedent for cultural celebration and preservation in a region known more for its sometimes extravagant embrace of the future. Housed in an I.M. Pei- designed building, the museum’s diverse holdings reflect the history and vitality of the Islamic world: 10th-century gold-inked North African Korans, bejeweled vases from 14th-century Egypt, Ottoman swords, and Iraqi earthenware. Together they add up to one of the premier collections of Islamic art-and testify to Qatar’s status as one of the 21st century’s emerging culture capitals. Saudi Arabia *The Burj, Dubai http://www.burjdubai.com/ Upon it’s completion, this will be the world’s tallest building. India *Taj Mahal, India http://www.tajmahal.org.uk/ The Taj Mahal in India is one of the wonders of the world and is one of the most beautiful mausoleums constructed by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his favorite queen, Mumtaz Mahal. Located in Agra, white marble is used in the creation of this symbol of love and is considered to be the pinnacle of the famous Mughal architecture. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “If music be the food of love, play on.” ~Shakespeare 29
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Japan *Yakushima Island, Kagoshima, Japan http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/indepth/featuredarticles/worldheritage/c_12_yakushima.html Indonesia *Bali, Indonesia http://www.baliblog.com/ Vietnam *Halong Bay, Vietnam http://www.halongbay-travel.com/ The descending dragon bay is Vietnam’s most beautiful natural attraction with thousands of isles and limestone karsts of different sizes and shapes. Legend goes that when Chinese invaders attacked Vietnam, God sent jewel and jade spitting dragons and these jewels turned into islets and islands that linked together to form a wall. Some of the islands are fishermen’s floating villages. *The Himalayas, Asia http://www.travel-himalayas.com/ This spectacle of awesome dimensions …the 3000 kilometer long towering mountain range with tiers of rock, ranges upon ranges, sky scraping peaks and canyons, is the planet’s highest mountain system and includes the world’s highest peaks; Mount Everest and K2. It stretches through Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal and Pakistan. This is where earth meets the sky! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.” ~Henry Ford 30
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Russia *Lake Baikal, Southern Siberia, Russia http://www.waytorussia.net/Baikal/ This 25-million year old, 1,637 meters deep lake is the deepest, oldest and also the largest freshwater lake (by volume) in the world and contains much more water than all the great lakes in North America put together. The lake plays host to more than a thousand plant species and animal species. Mountains surround the lake on all sides and with 22 islands on the lake; it offers a most exotic visual treat and thrilling experience. China *Great Wall of China, China http://www.travelchinaguide.com/china_great_wall/ One of the seven wonders of the world, the Great Wall of China is a man-made structure that was constructed over two thousand years ago and took about 100 years to complete. The vastness of this project brings to light the immense capabilities of man. *The Limestone Basins at Huanglong, China http://www.chinahighlights.com/huanglong/ Mount Everest, Nepal, China http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Asia/Nepal/Sagarmatha_Zone/Mount_Everest- 2271981/TravelGuide-Mount_Everest.html ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” ~Albert Einstein 31
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thailand *Phang Nga Bay, Phuket, Thailand *Erawan National Park, Thailand Turkey *Natural Springs and Limestone Cliffs of Pamukkale, Turkey http://www.lonelyplanet.com/turkey/aegean- coast/pamukkale Best Activity: ---Asia--- Toyko *Naka Meguro Cherry Blossom Festival, Tokyo http://tokyo-tokyo.com/Naka-meguro.htm Naka Meguro Cherry Blossom Festival, the cherry trees lining the river are illuminated. Paper lanterns are also hung on the trees, giving a traditional feel to the festivities. The scene is beautiful in the evenings when the lights from the trees are reflected in the Meguro waters. People come early during the day and picnic close to the river bank, hoping to savor the beauty of the river at night. Festivities of the Matsuri (Festival) include folk music and dances, clown and other entertainment performances. The cherry tree-lined Meguro River runs through the fashionable, artsy neighborhood of Nakameguro, one of the most pleasant places in the city to spend an afternoon. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ~Anais Nin 32
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- India *South India Spend time birding and searching for the Bengal tiger. Talk tigers (and elephants and leopards) with Indian environmentalists. http://www.sierraclub.org Thailand *Bangkok by Boat http://www.thailand.travelmall.com/travelmall/tour/Bangkok_By_Boat Take a private tour of the klongs, or canals, that branch off from the river by hiring a long-tailed boat at the Oriental Pier, next to the famed Mandarin Oriental Hotel. These slim, long boats are driven by entirely-too-powerful automotive engines mounted above the water line and wielded by expert drivers who can turn on a dime. You’ll cruise down serene waterways, past homes built on stilts with lush gardens—and get a close-up look at how many of the locals live. Negotiate a price of $15 an hour and refuse a detour to a common rip-off stop, a pathetic snake farm. Singapore *Singapore Flyer Sky Dining http://www.singaporeflyer.com/en/event-group- packages/worlds-first-full-butler-sky-dining.html Enjoy a wonderful 90-minute fine-dining experience with panoramic views aboard the Singapore Flyer, the world's largest observation wheel. It towers above Singapore's iconic landmarks - Marina Bay, Singapore River, Raffles Place financial district - and features the world's first full-butler dinner service in the sky. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ~M.K. Gandhi 33
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Africa
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: ---Africa--- South Africa *Cape Grace, Cape Town, South Africa http://www.capegrace.com/ Two movable pedestrian bascule bridges provide access from the bustling waterfront to this quiet, mansard-roofed hotel on its own private quay. The sumptuous interiors here (all redone in 2008) include dark-wood antiques, blue-and-white Dutch crockery, and richly patterned fabrics that evoke the region’s raw, exotic blooms. Morocco *Anayela, Marrakech, Morocco http://www.designhotels.com/anayela Located in the heart of the Medina, or historic city, of Marrakech, the AnaYela is surrounded on all sides by the bustling souks, cafes and nightclubs of the lively Red City. Housed in a 300-year-old palace, the hotel is named for a former occupant, a girl named Yela who left behind an intimate journal in one of its secret rooms. The hotel name translates literally to “I Am Yela,” and everything in it Sir Richard Branson’s Moroccan Retreat. references the life and times of its past dweller. One of Morocco’s most renowned calligraphers even hammered the girl’s story in silver onto the vast doors scattered throughout the premises. *Kasbah Tamadot, Marrakech, Morocco http://www.kasbahtamadot.virgin.com/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “At each stage of learning we must give up something, even if it is a way of life that we have always known.” ~Ginevee, Australian Aboriginal 35
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Most Unusual: ---Africa--- Cape Town *Grand Daddy Hotel, Cape Town, Africa www.granddaddy.co.za Where the penthouse is a trailer park: Cape Town's sleek Grand Daddy hotel has a surprise on its roof: a fleet of seven Airstream trailers, six of which were imported from the U.S. The aluminum-clad "rooms," which sleep two people, have been done in playful themes that incorporate icons like "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" (a blonde wig and a bear suit are available for dress-up), and John Lennon and Yoko Ono (the room's white-on-white furnishings include an enormous bed, natch). If you don't want to stray as far from the trailers' original looks, there's the Pleasantville model, an Eisenhower-era fantasia with chintz, harvest-gold curtains, and flower-covered throw pillows. The Grand Daddy hotel's aluminum-clad "rooms," which sleep two people, have been done in playful themes. One is dedicated to John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Kenya *Giraffe Manor, Langata, Kenya http://www.giraffemanor.com/ The Giraffe Manor is an elegant, personally hosted, small and exclusive hotel, famous for its resident herd of giraffe. The Giraffe Manor offers a rich blend of welcoming accommodation, highly trained and friendly staff, as well as one of Nairobi's finest kitchens. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” ~Zig Ziglar 36
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---Africa--- Morocco *Chefchaouen, Morocco http://www.morocco.com/ Travelers to Morocco usually check out the typical attractions: the ancient alleys of Fez, the snake charmers of Marrakesh, the dunes of the Sahara. But you must make make your way to relatively the little-known escape: the charming, blue-tinged village of Chefchaouen in the Rif Mountains about four hours from Fez. Cape Town *Cape Town, South Africa http://www.cape-town.info/ Aptly called “heaven on earth,” this beautiful town at the tip of the African continent, with small roads surrounded by huge mountains, makes a person feel small; showing how marvelous and dominating nature can actually be. Egypt *The Pyramids, Egypt http://www.nationalgeographic.com/pyramids/pyramids.html The Egyptian pyramids are massive monuments with a square base and four triangular sides rising up to a point. There was a lot of curiosity associated with the pyramids as to their formation, whether it was natural. Madagascar *Madagascar Expedition http://www.geoex.com Journey to the world’s fourth-largest island for wildlife seen nowhere else. Volunteer Opportunities http://blueventures.org/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself, any direction you choose.” ~Dr. Seuss 37
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa http://www.mtkilimanjarologue.com/ Ernest Hemingway described this mountain as, “as wide as all the world, great, high and unbelievably white,” in his book, “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.” The roof of Africa as it is called is the world’s tallest free-standing mountain and a dormant stratovolcano. The Kibo Summit at the top of the mountain is one among the few peaks of Africa that still have glaciers. *Sahara Sunset, Sahara Desert http://realtravel.com/dg-37879- sahara_desert_expert_advice While the Sahara Desert is a wonderful place to see for the wide expanse of sand dunes, the sunset there is sure to take your breath away. A night spent camping on the sand dunes of this three-million year old desert, watching the sky change colors at dusk, is a dream come true for any nature lover. South Africa *Victoria Waterfalls, Southern Africa http://www.victoria.worldweb.com/Photos/Waterfalls/ These falls were named after queen Victoria, by a Scottish Explorer, David Livingstone. Locally, they are called “Mosi-Oa- Tunya,” meaning “smoke that thunders.” They are enormous and most unusual in form. Their width of 1.7 km and height of 108 meters makes them the largest sheet of falling water in the world; although, they are not the widest or the largest. The breathtaking sight of these spectacular waterfalls has to be seen from the air to view its glory. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” ~Dr. Seuss 38
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Namaqualand, South Africa http://www.e- gnu.com/south_africa/namaqualand.html Namaqualand in the Northern Cape Region of South Africa, between the Orange River and the wild coast witnesses a natural flower phenomenon that is regarded as a natural wonder of the world. While this area is dry and arid for most of the year; with the coming of spring in August and September, it transforms into a vast expanse of wild flowers of every color. This extraordinary beauty attracts people from all over the world during the spring. Best Activity: ---Africa--- *Safari in South Africa http://www.southafrica.net/sat/content/en/us/full- article?oid=12503&sn=Detail&pid=439 *Ostrich Farming in Oudtshoorn *Garden Route Big 7 Tour The Garden Route, offers a world of wonders and allows you to see the Big 7 (lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo, elephant, whale and great white shark). This package gives you a combination of bush and beach experiences, along the famous Garden Route, renowned for its scenic beauty. http://www.lathita.co.za/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=152&Itemid=65 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.” ~Mark Twain 39
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Europe
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: Europe France *Les Hautes Roches, Loire Valley, France http://www.leshautesroches.com/ *Hotel de Crillon, Paris, France *The Plaza Athenee, Paris, France *Sofitel Luxembourg Le Grand Ducal, Luxembourg City, Bayeux, France http://www.hotel- luxembourg.com/ After Le Lion d'Or , this Best Western is the area's finest hotel. The restored interior has terrazzo floors; the decor combines neoclassical and Art Deco design. Rooms range in size from small to medium and have been overhauled with an eye to modern comfort, including fine bed linens. All units come with small bathrooms with showers, and more than half also have tubs. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Someone sent me a postcard picture of the earth. On the back it said, ‘Wish you were here.’” ~Steven Wright 41
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Italy *Hotel Sant’Angelo, Italy http://www.hotelsantangelosassi.it Hotel Sant'Angelo - in the southern Italian town of Matera - features sixteen “historic dwellings” set amid a Unesco World Heritage site. *The St. Regis Bora Grand Hotel, Rome, Italy http://www.starwoodhotels.com/stregis/index.html *Hotel Caruso, Ravello, Italy http://www.hotelcaruso.com/web/orav/hotel_caruso_ravello.jsp The Amalfi coast is, and has long been, one of the world’s favorite high-end destinations — in the middle of the last century, particularly, it was the escape of choice for much of the luxury-yacht set. These days it’s got competition all over the world, but the fundamental attractions are still there: the climate, the geography, views, the people, the culture. And the Caruso has long been one of the Amalfi’s highlights. High on a cliffside in Ravello, the view of the coast from its terrace has been described as the most beautiful in the world by no less an authority than Gore Vidal. *Palazzo Sasso, Ravello, Amalfi Coast, Italy http://www.palazzosasso.com/ Switzerland The Dolder Grand City Resort, Zurich, Switzerland http://www.thedoldergrand.com/en/ Since 1899, has been closed for renovation since 2004 and re- opens in April 2008. What’s new? 173 luxurious rooms and suites, a spa approximately 40,000 square feet, two restaurants and banquet facilities. Over 440 million Swiss francs (approximately 400 million USD) have been invested in the project. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Carpe diem - Seize the Day!” ~Horace 42
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *The Omnia, Zermatt, Switzerland http://www.kiwicollection.com/property/the-omnia The location is at once central and quite comfortably removed from the bustle of town — guests enter through a tunnel in the rock and ride an elevator up to the lobby, high above Zermatt’s rooftops. And you don’t have to be a skier to enjoy it: this is a year-round resort town, with all manner of outdoor activities, as well as some fine upscale shopping and dining. Germany *The Mandala, Berlin, Germany http://www.themandala.de/ Greece *Perivolas Traditional Houses, Santorini, Greece http://www.perivolas.gr/index.htm Located in West Shinjuku on the 39th to 52nd floors of Kenzo Tange's granite-and-glass Shinjuku Park Tower, the Park Hyatt has spurred lots of imitators since its 1994 opening, yet it remains among the most gorgeous and sophisticated hotels in Japan, a perfect reflection of high-tech, avant-garde Tokyo in the 21st century. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.” ~Franklin P. Jones 43
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Great Britain *Haymarket Hotel, London http://www.firmdale.com/index.php?page_id=8 The newest member of the excellent Firmdale Group mixes traditional style with contemporary British design. The hotel comprises a group of townhouses (some by 18th-century architect John Nash), one of which has its own entrance and can be rented in its entirety. Kit Kemp's design blends muted colours with bright, bold patterns. The large contemporary-art collection includes a stainless-steel sculpture by Tony Cragg and a striking light installation by Martin Richman in the pool bar. - SEPTEMBER 21, 2008 - *Babington House, Somerset, England http://www.babingtonhouse.co.uk/ FINCA ROSA BLANCA COUNTRY INN BECOMES THE FIRST The revamped interiors exude cool. Their design style is an eclectic mix of original panelled walls and shuttered bay windows, hip retro HOTEL IN COSTA RICA TO BE and modern furniture, plus the latest technology. This CERTIFIED WITH A 100% SCORE contemporary country-house hotel and private members' club is set in 18 acres of grounds and has 32 spacious bedrooms in several IN THE CST PROGRAM (Certification for Sustainable Tourism) buildings, including a new, 700sq ft room known as the Playroom. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.” ~Henry Louis Mencken 44
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *One Aldwych, London http://www.campbellgrayhotels.com/?lang=EN#/one-aldwych-london “We had a thoroughly enjoyable stay at this little treasure. The whole place has the feel of a rather grand family home, intimate, luxurious…” Spain *Hospes Palacio Del Bailio, Cordoba, Andalusia, Spain http://www.kiwicollection.com/property/hospex- palacio-del-bailio-cordoba This is a palace of an entirely different kind. More a mansion than a hotel, it’s equal parts hacienda and Moorish manor, with some rooms opening onto ancillary patios, and others in the main building ringing the main courtyard, with its majestic old palms and pleasantly cool outdoor swimming pool. Cordoba hides a treasure in its downtown, the Hospes Palacio del Bailío. Built between the 16th and 18th centuries, the building has been listed World Cultural Heritage Site. Scotland *The Boath House Hotel, Nairn, Scotland http://www.boath-house.com/ Once described as the most beautiful Regency House in Scotland. It was on Historic Scotland’s ‘endangered list’, in the early 90s, when Don and Wendy Matheson found it, fell in love with it, and set about restoring this Grade A listed Georgian Mansion to its original splendour. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “When you come to a fork in the road, take it. ~Yogi Berra 45
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Most Unusual: ---Europe--- Germany I cannot get enough of this hotel!! This circus-like room at Propeller Island City Lodge has lion cages on stilts; the website claims that kids "love to sleep" in them. The Upside Down Room at Propeller Island City Lodge makes guests feel as if they were walking on the ceiling. Compartments open up to reveal the beds and seating. …..this one is covered with wacky symbols. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ “We may affirm absolutely that nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion.” ~Hegel 46
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- …Gruft room - Deep sleepers should perhaps avoid the Gothic beds … – or just opt for a less terrifying bed in the "labyrinth" part of the room below. "Fantastic place - completely safe for children and a real family experience. Really well furnished, clean with an amazing adventure park around you. Worth the drive to visit." Guru4Travel , 03/06/2008 *Baumhaus Hotel, Germany (Eastern Germany) http://www.puremaui.com/ Choose one of 5 cosy tree houses situated 8m to 10m up a tree in a fantastic recreational park outside Görlitz. First open in June 2005, it is arguable whether it is the first tree house hotel in Germany or the craziest. Austria *Das Park Hotel, Linz, Austria http://www.uhotw.com Who would have thought concrete could be comfy? These renovated sewage pipes are, thankfully, clean and functional and sit on the banks of the Danube, making them a perfect post-industrial bolt hole. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.” ~Shakespeare 47
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sweden *Sala Silvermine, Sweden http://www.mondrianscottsdale.com/#/home/ Sala Silvermine in Sweden attracts hundreds of visitors each year to view its vast caverns and beautiful underground lakes. This exceeded all expectations - a wonderful idea brought to fruitation in a wonderful way. The lift system is amazing . . .The room itself is very well-equipped, with touchscreen Holland climate and lighting control . . . Operating the crane is addictive and although the sun deck was more of a bluster deck while we were there, there's plenty of *Crane Hotel, Harlingen, space for two people. The views are wonderful and the Netherlands http://www.vuurtoren- morning mist is lovely. One night is not long enough! harlingen.nl/eng/index3.html But with a swish interior, rotating sea views and splendid sense of isolation, you can forgive this hotel's less-than-glamourous dockside location. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” ~Walt Disney 48
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Greece *Fresh Hotel, Athens, Greece http://www.designhotels.com/hotels/europe/greece/athens/fresh_hotel Amidst the sizzling hustle and bustle of downtown Athens, the Fresh Hotel is nothing short of a spacious and calm sanctuary, allowing its guests to attain an instantaneous state of inner well-being in an environment of clear stylish lines and vivid yet balanced colors. At the onset of the summer season 2004, the sleek, 133-room Fresh Hotel came into being, adding a hip – and yes, fresh – location with subtle, state-of-the-art contemporary lifestyle design to the diversity of the city's hotel and nightlife scene. Great Britain & Netherlands *Yotel, London & Amsterdam http://www.yotel.com/ Everything you would expect from a luxury hotel in a small space. Inside the airport terminal buildings accessible from the public areas at London Heathrow’s Terminal 4 and London Gatwick’s South Terminal. Just moments walk from check in, arrivals and minutes from the other terminals. Amsterdam Schiphol YOTEL is located within the secure transit area, minutes from the departure gates and easily accessible with your passport, proof of travel and YOTEL booking confirmation. *Capsule Hotel, The Hague, Netherlands http://www.capsulehotel.info Unusual but indestructible, these orange "survival pods" were previously used on oil rig platforms and can be floated in different locations. A James Bond version boasts a DVD player and a Martini- making set. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.” ~Maya Angelou 49
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Hotel De Vrouwe Van Stavoren, Netherlands www.hotel-vrouwevanstavoren.nl A place to unwine'd: When they were owned by a Swiss château, the four enormous casks on the grounds of the Hotel De Vrouwe Van Stavoren in the Netherlands held the equivalent of 19,333 bottles of wine. Now, after some creative recycling, it's guests rather than booze that mellow out inside the casks. The richly worn and airtight oak barrels have two narrow beds, with a small sitting area outside. The grounds are quite close to tiny Stavoren's harbor, which was a major port in the Middle Ages. Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---Europe--- Germany *Berlin’s Festival of Lights http://www.city-stiftung- berlin.eu/index.php 14-25, Oktober 2009 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The journey is the reward.” ~Chinese Proverb 50
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- France *Wine Regions: Bordeaux http://www.bordeaux- tourisme.com/pl/visites_et_degustations.pl?c2=50&lg=uk Nestled in the Bordeaux reagion of France, the town of St. Emilion is home to many vineyards and wineries. *Versailles Castle, France http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Europe/France/Ile_de_France/Versailles-83853/TravelGuide-Versailles.html *French Alps, France http://www.wordtravels.com/Travelguide/Countries/France/Regions/French+Alps ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “At each stage of learning we must give up something, even if it is a way of life that we have always known.” ~Ginevee, Australian Aboriginal 51
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Greece *Santorini Island, Greece http://www.travel-to-santorini.com/ The unparalleled beauty of this famous Greek Island is attributed to God having created it when he was most happy. This island is part of the Cyclades Islands in the South Aegean Sea. It is known as the best place in the world for watching the sunset. The volcanic rim overlooking the sea filled caldera, the breathtaking sunsets and the deep blue are spectacular. Azores *Sao Miguel, Azores http://www.azores.com/azores/sao_miguel.php Sao Miguel is the largest in the Azores – an archipelago of nine lush, verdant islands nearly 1,000 miles west of Lisbon, Portugal. In autumn, when the weather cools slightly, it’s a walker’s paradise. Great Britain *Dorset Coast, England http://www.the-dorset-guru.com/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.” ~Leonardo da Vinci 52
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Peru *Machu Picchu, Peru http://www.machupicchu.org/ Machu Picchu in Peru, which means ‘Old Peak,” is one of the most enigmatic ancient sites in the world. According to legend, Machu Picchu was a long time ago considered to be a sacred place. The credit for the creation of the extraordinary city goes to the Inca people who have erected many stone structures and turned the place into an art form. Norway *Sognefijord, Norway http://www.visitnorway.com/us/Articles/Norway/West/Sognefjord/Scenic-attractions-in-the-Sognefjord-area/ The second longest fjord (an inset of the sea between steep slopes) in the world and the largest in Norway, the magnificence of this has to be experienced for the magnitude to be understood. Reaching to more than 1,300 meters below sea level and above 2,000 meters above sea level, the sparkling water, the beautiful cliff faces and the picturesque villages make this a must visit place for nature lovers. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Try to learn something about everything and everything about something.” ~Thomas Huxley 53
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Italy *Blue Grotto Cave, Italy http://www.worldtravelguide.net/attraction/48/attraction_guide/Europe/Blue-Grotto-Il- Hnejja.html German writer, August Kopisch was the first to write about the beauty of the Blue Grotto cave on the coast of the Island of Capri. The blue reflection is caused by sunlight that passes through a cavity underwater and shines through the seawater. The natural cave formations and the crystal blue water take you into a different world. *Pula Beach, Sardinia, Italy http://www.discover- sardinia.com/beaches/pula.htm Voted World’s 25 Sexiest Beaches ’09 ~Forbes Traveler *Tuscany, Italy http://www.discovertuscany.com/ *Canals, Venice http://www.fodors.com/world/europe/italy/venice/ “If this place sinks, the world will be poorer!” The beauty of Venice has been described in several ways. The canals in Venice are world famous and are the most beautiful. It is built on 118 islands connected by bridges and formed by 150 canals. This city with water streets is the only European city where no motorcars are used and all the transportation is on the canals, with the use of water taxis, waterbuses and the most romantic gondolas. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.” ~ 54
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Scotland *Glencoe, Scotland http://www.lonelyplanet.com/scotland The magical quality of Glencoe astonishes visitors that are unprepared for the breathtaking serenity of this pass. With the history and drama it unfolds, it is certainly Europe’s scenic wonders. Scotland’s hills are rock covered with moss – with waterfalls looking like silver lines sliding down the hillside. Jordania *The Nabatean city of Petra, Jordania (near Israel) http://www.sacred-destinations.com/jordan/petra Greece *Red Beach, Santorini, Greece http://www.travel-to- santorini.com/place.php?place_id=30 Greece's Santorini—an archipelago of tiny islands in the Southern Aegean Sea—overwhelms the senses with black sand, royal blue sea and crimson lava cliffs. Red Beach is only accessible by boat or by foot and can’t help but stir a profound inspiration in all who lay eyes upon it. Best Activity ---Europe--- Peru *Peru’s Amazon River Help scientists gather data via riverboat. Play researcher for a real-life conservation effort! http://www.earthwatch.org ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Beauty is truth, truth beauty. That is all ye know on Earth, and all ye need to know.” ~John Keats 55
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Guided Walk in London, Rome, Paris, Dublin, New York and San Francisco Nothing beats a tour with a knowledgeable expert. You certainly will enjoy the city even better and learn and see places that you might have missed. Paris: Promenades Gourmandes Rome: Presto Tours Dublin: Historical Insights Ireland, James Joyce Centre & Dublin Literary Pub Crawl London: London Walks Spain *Walking Tour in Barcelona Become immersed in Barcelona by taking the Barcelona Walks Modernisme. The focus is the Golden Square area, a virtual “open air museum” of world renowned Art Nouveau architects such as Gaudi, Montaner, and Cadafalch. Then, depending on your inclinations, take the Gothic Walk and discover many hidden squares; or the Shopping Tour for forays to specialized stores, complete with language assistance. There's the Gourmet Walk to sample food in Old Town markets and restaurants and the Picasso Walk for an informative visit to the Picasso Museum and the artist’s haunts. For more information: Turisme de Barcelona *Don’t Miss - The Best Restaurant in the World! He’s been called a mad scintist, a molecular gastronomist, a culinary genius, and the Best Chef in the World, but Ferran Adrià (with me, above) is mainly obsessed with Flavor with a capital F. Don't miss my El Bulli slideshow--it's full of tips, must-know facts, and behind-the-scenes shots. http://www.theworlds50best.com/module/acms_winners?group_id=1&item_id=38 Germany *Walking Tour of Berlin Gastro Rallye, a walking tour of trendy Berlin, is Berlinagenten’s signature tour. Owner Henrik Tidefjärd takes guests to different off-the-beaten track restaurants for each course of a meal. His aim is to have travelers experience the real Berlin and its people, and he treats them like his own out-of-town personal friends. For more information: Berlinagenten & Go Art! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The most beautiful house in the world is the one that you build for yourself.” ~Witold Rybczynski 56
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Oceania
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Favorite Hideaway Vacation Destination: ---Oceania--- Polynesia *Bora Bora Lagoon Resort and Spa, Bora Bora, French Polynesia http://www.boraboralagoon.com/web/obor/obor_a2a_home.jsp *Le Taha’a Island Resort & Spa http://www.letahaa.com/main.phpv The Ultimate and Exclusive Hideaway Opened since July 2002, this resort is designed to be the most exclusive resort in French Polynesia . Superbly located on Motu Tautau on the coral reef, the resort faces the island of Taha'a on the lagoon side and offers an unsurpassed view on Bora Bora island on the ocean side. This traditional Polynesian style hotel is 5 minutes by boat from main island of Taha'a and 35 min by boat from Raiatea Island . The resort offers 48 Over Water Suites & 12 Beach Suites more than a hundred square meters in size. The public areas are built in the trees, providing an exquisite view on the lagoon and Taha'a Island. New Zealand *Huka Lodge, New Zealand http://www.hukalodge.co.nz/ The 20 lodge rooms at this secluded 1920s fishing resort, idyllically located near Lake Taupo on North Island, are set along the bank of the Waikato River. Used by guests during the day and for pre-dinner drinks, the central Lodge Room is elegant and cosy, with a large open fireplace and panoramic views of the Waikato River. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The truth isn’t always beauty, but the hunger for it is.” ~Nadine Gordimer 58
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Maia, Seychelles http://www.maia.com.sc/ Ideally suited to reclusive couples and carefully located throughout the resort, Maia Signature Villas reflect the Maia concept in its purest form. Spectacular views across the ocean, maximum privacy, flawless attention to detail... some with direct access to a 'secret' beach and others with the most superb private, hilltop position. Most Unusual: ---Oceania--- New Zealand *The Hobbit Motel, Woodlyn Park, Waitomo, New Zealand http://www.woodlynpark.co.nz Put aside your preconceptions of the soulless motel – these Lord of The Rings-inspired rooms invoke homely charms suitable for the most discerning of hobbits. *Wagon Stays, Christchurch, New Zealand http://www.wagonstays.co.nz/ The two-year-old Wagon Stays in Christchurch, New Zealand, features rooms with queen-size beds, computer-controlled showers, flush toilets, fully equipped kitchens, and satellite TV. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The truth isn’t always beauty, but the hunger for it is.” ~Nadine Gordimer 59
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Australia *The Old Jail, Mount Gambier, South Australia, Australia http://www.uhotw.com Discover an ocean-side paradise bordering a marine preserve that teems with colourful reef fish and protected species such as green sea turtles and spinner dolphins. Laze on the white-sand beach or golf on two world-ranked courses. Explore this untouched island playground, and experience your own private Hawaii. Natural Wonders / Sights to See: ---Oceania--- Australia *The Great Barrier Reef, Australia http://www.gbrmpa.gov.au/ One of the natural wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef off the east coast of Australia is the world’s largest coral reef. It has the distinction of being placed in the World Heritage as well as the National Heritage lists. With more than 600 islands and coral cays, the reef covers more than 300,000 sq. km. Corals make up the several reefs and cays and are responsible for a huge variety of sea life in the reef; including green turtles, several varieties of whales and dolphins, dugong, about 4000 types of mollusk, 1500 different species of fish as well as a beautiful colored bird life with 200 species. *Tarkine, Tasmania, Australia http://www.tarkine.org/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” ~Margaret Wolfe Hungerford 60
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Maldives *The Maldives http://www.worldtravelguide.net/country/160/country_guide/Indian-Subcontinent/Maldives.html The Maldives is an island nation located several hundred kilometres southwest of Sri Lanka and is the smallest Asian country in terms of population (300k). Tourism is the country’s biggest foreign exchange earners and these photos will show why the Maldives is one of the beautiful places on this world. Fiji *Mamanuca Islands, Fiji http://iguide.travel/Mamanuca_Islands They are 20 islands in total. These beautiful islands of Mamanuca are varied; while some are small and can be walked around in a few minutes, others may take days to explore. For those who love nature and water bodies, these islands are a paradise with miles and miles of lilley snow white sand and beautiful turquoise blue beaches. Australia *Ayers Rock/Uluru, Australia http://www.atn.com.au/nt/south/uluru.htm This sacred place of the Aborigines, Uluru, as it is now called is the world’s largest monolith. This is the weathered peak of a mountain range that is buried and rises about 430 meters from the desert. It appears to take on various hues depending on the weather and the distance. Visitors who take mementoes of sand or pieces of rock apparently report bad luck and the belief is that returning them restores normalcy. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Imagination and fiction make up more than three quarters of our real life.” ~Simone Weil 61
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- *Lamington National Park, Australia http://lamington.nrsm.uq.edu.au/MainMenu.html If you’re looking for the elusive Coxen’s Fig Parrot or eastern bristlebird, you’ll probably have a better chance of spotting them in this rainforest park than from wherever you’re sitting now. Lamington forms part of Queensland’s Scenic Rim and is only about 18 miles from the Pacific. Its dramatic, deep green plateaus and cliffs are remnants of an ancient volcano. From waterfalls to wallabies, this park has it all, along with miles of walking tracks. There’s also a Rainforest Canopy Walk, a network of rope-and-plank suspension bridges 50 feet above the forest floor, in the Green Mountains section. You can overnight at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Guesthouse, or take a day trip by bus from Brisbane (75 miles to the north). Antarctica *Antarctica http://www.lonelyplanet.com/antarctica Antarctica occupies 10% of the land on earth and it is one and half times as big as China. Because of the thin air and high altitude along with the ice and snow on the surface of the solar reflection, this has become the coldest places in the world. The surface is covered with tremendous amounts of iceberg. For animal and bird lovers, there is plenty of action in the form of penguins, sea birds, swallows, skua and fur sea lions. The drop-dead beauty of Antarctica cannot be explained enough. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Life, you know, is rather like opening a tin of sardines. We’re all of us looking for the key.” ~Alan Bennett 62
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Polynesia *Bora Bora Island, French Polynesia http://www.boraboraisland.com/ The name Bora Bora evokes images of a mythic paradise. This pearl of the pacific is one of the group of Leeward Islands and is the northernmost. The beauty of the lagoon is unparalleled. It has the distinction of being one of the rare places where manta rays (largest of the rays “species”) can be observed throughout the year. Another specialty is houses built over water. This place is a paradise for nature lovers and divers. Lake Baikal – Southern Siberia, Russia New Zealand *Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand http://www.tourism.net.nz/region/fiordland/fiordland---milford-sound/ Rudyard Kipling described Milford Sound as the eighth wonder of the world. It is located in the exotic Fiordland region of New Zealand. It is surrounded by two peaks; The Elephant and the Lion Mountain. The awesome closeness of the sea, mountains and the beautiful rain forests gives it an indescribable beauty, along with the penguins, seals and dolphins there. Best Activity: ---Oceania--- Fiji & Polynesia *Island Hopping in Fiji http://www.awesomefiji.com/passes-bula.aspx *Fiji or Polynesia Scuba Diving http://www.fijidive.com/; http://www.divetahitiblue.com/ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “May you live all the days of your life.” ~Jonathan Swift 63
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Our Passion Your Life Most Scenic and Luxurious Train Trip: Enjoy the Ride *Blue Train, Pretoria, Cape Town, South Africa http://www.bluetrain.co.za/ *Danube Express: The Istanbul Odyssey, London-Prague-Vienna-Budapest-Sophia-Istanbul http://www.danube-express.com/ *Hiram Bingham, Cusco-Machu Picchu, Peru http://www.orient- express.com/collection/trains/hiram_bingham.jsp *Royal Canadian Pacific, Calgary-The Rockies, Canada http://www.royalcanadianpacific.com/ *Royal Scotsman, Edinburgh-Scottish Highlands, Scotland http://www.royalscotsman.com/web/rs/the_royal_scotsman.jsp *Shinkansen, Japan http://www.japanrail.com/index.php?page=JR-Shinkansen-bullet-train *Southwest Chief, Chicago-Los Angeles, USA http://www.amtrak.com/servlet/ContentServer/AM_Route_C/1241245650447/1237405732511 *The Ghan, Darwin-Adelaide, Australia http://www.gsr.com.au/our-trains/the-ghan/the-journey.php *The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, London-Paris-Venice http://www.orient- express.com/web/vsoe/venice_simplon_orient_express.jsp *Trans-Siberian Express, St. Petersburg-Vladivostok, Russia http://www.trans-siberian.co.uk/site/ ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “If all the world were music, our hearts would often long for one sweet Strain of silence, to break the endless song.” ~Henry van Dyke 64
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Best Cruise Experience: Large Ships 1 Celebrity Cruises 87.58 2 Crystal Cruises 85.50 3 Royal Caribbean International 85.22 4 P&O Cruises 83.57 5 Carnival Cruise Line 83.20 6 Norwegian Cruise Line 80.50 7 Cunard Line 79.88 8 Thompson Cruises 77.50 9 Fred Olsen Cruise Lines 76.86 10 Princess Cruises Small Ships 1 Windstar Cruises 90.00 2 Silversea Cruises 89.29 3 Star Cruises 86.90 4 Seabourn Cruise Line 86.50 5 Star Clippers 84.25 6 Swan Hellenic 82.97 7 Hebridean International Cruises 82.44 8 SeaDream Cruises 80.67 9 Regent Seven Seas Cruises 79.60 10 Norwegian Coastal Cruises 78.89 *Sea Cloud - Hussar http://www.seacloud.com/en/the-ships/sea-cloud-hussar.html *Seabourn - Odyssey http://www.seabourn.com/ *Avalon - Felicity & Luminary http://www.avalonwaterways.com/Avalon-Cruises/Cruising-Ships/ *Silversea Silver Spirit http://www.silversea.com/silversea.aspx?id=273&menu_id=7&page_id=ourfleet (Silversea’s largest ship to date) *Viking River Cruises - Viking Legend http://www.vikingrivers.com/ ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- People with many interests live, not only longest, but happiest. ~George Matthew Allen 65
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Interactive World Map: http://www.intute.ac.uk/sciences/worldguide/worldmap.html ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “Fill your life with as many moments and experiences of joy and passion as you humanly can. Start with one experience and build on it.” ~Wieder Marcia 66
    • ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- dynami group is a single-source, full-service event production company specializing in meetings, events, incentives and corporate communications needs. Meeting, Event & Campaign Collateral: Design and print production of save the date web-blasts, on-line registration, printed invitations, brochures, banners & signage. Concept, Design & Staging of Business Meetings: Creative opener and closer concepts and fulfillment, set and stage design &production, audio visual support. Film/Video & Multimedia Production: Development & management of all media complimentary to your program, animation, interstitials, highlight videos, PowerPoint and other requirements. Live Business Theater: Scripting & production of theatrical business meeting elements. Speech Writing & Speaker Support: Scripting of keynote addresses, all on-site needs, teleprompting, coaching and other requirements. Theme Development: Utilizing your meeting and conference content and message to develop an original meeting/event theme. Theme Graphic Design: Design and application of original meeting/theme logos, awards & recognition events Live Music, Specialty Acts, Keynote Speakers, and Celebrity Entertainment: Total talent coordination and management. Product Launches: Materials, marketing and live launches. Incentive Programs: Site selection through total on-site program development and management. Trade Show Design/Production & Promotion: Booth design and fabrication, booth draw concepts and production and staffing. Conference and Meeting Logistics & Management: Site selection, venue and vendor management, room use and set, temporary staffing, collateral, signage, giveaways and program management Destination Event Management: Off-Site events, companion programs, tours and transportation. dynami group | 404-875-2653 | www.dynamigroup.com ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The best way to prepare for life is begin to live.” ~Elbert Hubbard 67