5 Healthy Sights and Activities in the Green City of Vancouver

Vancouver

Travelers who decide to stroll on less traveled roads in Vancouver, will often end up in beautiful and lush parks. Their eyes will enjoy the view of the wild ocean, the snow-covered mountains, and the vast wetlands. Their face will enjoy the cool sea breeze, and their mind will sparkle because of the exciting feeling of adventure. Those who like to exercise will find pleasure in the countless hiking, swimming, tennis, and golfing opportunities in the city’s parks and neighborhoods.

1. Commercial Drive 

Commercial Drive is a neighborhood full of shops and farmer’s markets. Some of those shops include music stores and bookshops. Commercial Drive is also loved because of its culinary diversity. Dishes from all over the world are available in various charming restaurants. Also visit this neighborhood during festivals like the Parade of Lost Souls, and the Vancouver International Fringe Festival.

2. Everett Crowley Park

Everrett Crowley Park is a delight for adventurous city dwellers. Follow the park trails and enjoy the surrounding nature in the form of plants, trees, local wildlife, and a pond. This park in southeast Vancouver also offers its visitors a view over the Fraser River. Try to spot Mount Baker and the Gulf Islands when the weather is clear.

3. Ambleside Pitch and Putt

Head over to the Ambleside Pitch and Putt for a laid-back day of golf. This golf club in West Vancouver offers friendly prices and a beautiful course that is easily accessible from the nearby beach. In between golf swings, golfers will also enjoy the view of Stanley Park and Lions Gate Bridge. Search for nearby Vancouver Hotels in the West Vancouver neighborhood for an excellent beach and golf vacation.

4. New Brighton Park

New Brighton Park in the Hastings-Sunrise district is a perfect spot for active travelers. They can swim in the refreshing outdoor pool, play soccer on one of the large fields, or stroll along the scenic walking trails. The park also houses tennis courts, playgrounds, and picnic areas. The nearby Rosedale On Robson Suite Hotel is a great place to relax after an intensive day of activities.

5. The Sanctuary at Hastings Park 

The Sanctuary at Hastings Park is a delightful place for bird lovers and hikers. It houses a marsh area and lake, which are both excellent living and resting spots for countless species of birds. However, this park offers more than only birds. It is also a place where culture meets nature in the form of charming Japanese and Italian gardens. Fountains, statues, and plants form the decorations of these gardens.

Where Urban Meets Nature 

Vancouver is a city that appreciates nature. Travelers notice the strong natural identity of this city when they start walking around and discover a large variety of beautiful parks. A lot of these parks are popular gathering spots for tourists and locals, but those travelers who follow the less traveled paths will often end up on walking trails in unexplored parks. A lot of those parks are not occupied by tourists but by the local wildlife. In these parks, vacationers will find many forms of entertainment in the form of sports, wildlife spotting, and other outdoor activities.

Cities Less Traveled: 5 Unknown London Attractions Along the Thames

London City

London is a large city full of famous attractions. However, the less traveled neighborhoods and sights often surprise even the most seasoned London travelers. Their beauty is only seen by those who venture into the unknown corners of the UK capital. Travelers find those attractions on or around the River Thames. Day trips often start with cruises and water tours or energetic strolls along the river banks, and they end tastefully with a bite or drink in a carefully hidden local restaurant or bar. Here are five of the most interesting attractions and dining possibilities along the Thames.

1. The Thames Barrier

Vacationers who like to see water engineering and water protection structures can have a look at the Thames Barrier. The construction work of this impressive water barrier ended in the year 1982. It has been build to protect Greater London against floods. The structure consists of 10 gates. London closes these gates during heavy storms or dangerously high tides. The southern bank of the barrier lies in New Charlton and the northern bank stands in the Silvertown district. Also try to spot the steel sculpture of The Diver when visiting the River Thames at low tide.

2. Firepower – The Royal Artillery Museum

Vacationers find other forms of protection at Firepower – The Royal Artillery Museum. This Woolwich-based museum is the oldest in its kind. It showcases collections of modern and historic artillery. Visitors also hear wartime stories of the men and women who used the weapons during their time in the Royal Regiment of Artillery.

3. Lower Marsh

Vacationers who are into shopping and theaters will enjoy a hotel stay in the Piccadilly district and the nearby historic Lower Marsh Street, where they can shop at the Lower Marsh Market. This market has been present since the 19th century. Because of the street’s historic character, visitors will also see vernacular and Victorian architecture. A stop at Lower Marsh in Waterloo is not complete without a visit to the iconic Old Vic theater. It is one of the most famous and beloved theaters among actors and spectators.

4. The Upper Deck Bar at the HMS Belfast

Enter the maritime-themed Upper Deck Bar above the HMS Belfast entrance for a late afternoon snack or drink. This is a good spot to end your day of exploring. It will reward you with an excellent view of the lowering sun that caresses the Tower Bridge and the river with its orange beams. Travelers find the Upper Deck Bar at Queen Walk, Tooley Street.

5. Hidden Attractions Near the River 

No matter if they want to visit famous sights or unexplored attractions, the River Thames will guide travelers along. See everything from the famous Tower Bridge in the central touristic area, to historic markets and museums in surrounding neighborhoods, and eventually the Thames Barrier that protects all these beautiful sights from the incoming North Sea water. Travelers can visit the official Transport for London website for information about various river services.

Hipmunk City Love: How to Enjoy Milan Like a Local

 

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Milan is a city that fulfills many travel wishes. It is a hotspot for fashion lovers and history fanatics. And traditional Milanese food is probably the cherry on the pie after a long day of sightseeing and shopping. The city houses a large variety of famous, must see tourists spots. However, when it comes to Milan’s hidden sightseeing treasures, there is no better guide then a Milanese local. They can give you a lot of inside information about restaurants, shops, and undiscovered sighsteeing spots.

Restaurants in Milan

Italy is a true gem when it comes to culinary delights. Order traditional, high quality Milanese food and a cocktail at Taglio or taste the finest Italian street food at Mangiardi di Strada. Do you prefer to travel around while eating? Then you should definitely try the special ATMosfera restaurant tram. This traditional tram will drive you around the city while you are enjoying a delicious Italian meal.

Relaxing and Connecting with Locals

Milan is famous for its fashion and its designers. In the eyes of many Milanese, a fashionable outfit should always be combined with an impeccable look. A beautiful hair style is just one of those things that makes you stand out from the crowd. Head over to Les Garçons de la rue for an affordable but stylish Italian hairstyle makeover. The friendly hairdressers will make you feel at home and they can tell a lot about their beloved city.

Milan’s Hidden Galleries and Workshops

A lot of Milanese fashion galleries gained much fame, but the city also houses various smaller galleries who might be just as interesting to discover. Travelers interested in small atelier’s, should pay a visit to Isola. This residential neighborhood is a good place to look for Milan hotels when you are a creative traveler. It is an undiscovered artist stronghold full of small artistic laboratories. When visiting Isola, make sure to look around carefully because the most beautiful and interesting gems are carefully tucked away.

A Rewarding Shopping Experience

Bring some extra bags if you plan a visit to Milan. Vacationers who love to shop, will have wonderful experience in Milan. Creative travelers like to visit the Libreria del mondo offeso. This is an artistic place where travelers can buy and read books, listen to jazz and drink coffee. Are you hungry after a few hours of shopping? Visit the Corso Buenos Aires Shopping strip and buy some salami, cheese and wine in a traditional delicatessen shop. The Giardini Publici park, within walking distance of the strip, is a perfect destination to end your Milan shopping experience with a nice picnic.

Learn to Love Milan Like a Local 

Learn what the locals in Milan like to do in their free time and enhance your travel experience. Follow them during a guided shopping tour, eat with them in one of Milan’s local restaurants or learn to know the city during a friendly conversation with your Italian hairdresser.
 
 
This is a sponsored post for Hipmunk.com

Hipmunk City Love: A Guide to the New Orleans French Quarter

New Orleans French Quarter

The French Quarter, also known as Vieux Carré, is a well-known neighborhood in New Orleans. It is one of the oldest districts in the city. Its history dates back to the 18th century colonial years of the Spanish and the French. This history is especially visible in the architecture. The French Quarter is also a district full of bars, restaurants, hotels and shops. This vibrant neighborhood will keep vacationers entertained for days. Despite its touristic character, it is also a residential area that houses a large variety of African and European immigrants.

A Day at the River

New Orleans is a valuable port. Trade has always been important in this city, due to its convenient spot near the Mississippi River. Vacationers will also enjoy this iconic and mighty river. Kids like to watch the ships go by, and food lovers have a great time at the riverbank restaurants. Seafood, especially, is a delight in these restaurants. The Mississippi river is within walking distance of the French Quarter.

A Night Out in Bourbon Street

Known worldwide among party lovers, Bourbon Street is the place to go for an electric night out in the town. Music bursts out of every corner in this melting pot of bars, clubs and restaurants. Due to a tolerant public drinking law, visitors are often seen hopping from one bar to another, while drinking their cocktail and singing or dancing. Music is a strong signature of Bourbon Street. Various musicians roam the streets to feed the lively atmosphere. Make sure not to drink too much because Bourbon Street is one place you want to remember.

Colonial Architecture 

When it comes to architecture, the French Quarter is mainly known for its creatively designed ironwork balconies, lush green courtyards, and its graceful fountains. Spanish and French influences are visible in many of the historical buildings. Jackson Square is the most iconic landmark in the neighborhood. This square is a delight for history lovers. Here they can find the St. Louis Cathedral and the Cabildo, a colonial government building. The Pontalba buildings also flank the square. These are the oldest apartments in the country.

Sleeping in the French Quarter

Visitors have a lot of choices when it comes to hotels. One of those choices is the stylish Prince Conti Hotel. Here, guests will stay in romantic, antique furnished rooms with a charming 19th century touch. The hotel is a comfortable getaway in the center of the French Quarter. Various French Quarter attractions are conveniently within walking distance.

An Electrifying Adventure in the New Orleans French Quarter

A city-trip to New Orleans is a dynamic adventure. Neighborhoods like the French Quarter will take visitors back to colonial times during daytime strolls, and will make them forget the time when they watch the sunset over the mighty Mississippi river. And at last there will be the nights. The nights they end up singing and dancing their way through Bourbon Street, enchanted by all the jazz, soul, gospel, and pop sounds that were born in this multicultural hot spot.

3 Uncommon Tourists Spots in Chicago

Gold Coast - Chicago
Photo by Zeynep Akman via Trover.com

Chicago, Illinois is full of hidden gems when it comes to attractions and sights. Pick your unique Chicago activities and plan an adventurous city trip to this vibrant and soulful town. Stroll to unexplored neighborhoods, listen and feel the music on every corner, get in contact with locals, and at the end of the day relax in one of Chicago’s comfortable hotels near your favorite tourist attraction. Here are a few of those hidden gems that you may not have known about.

The Fountain of Time

The massive concrete sculpture, the Fountain of Time, in Washington Park is one of the city’s less-visited sights. However, its unique design and the story behind what it represents make it an interesting attraction and a real treasure. The sculpture, created by Lorado Taft in 1922, represents humanity’s relationship with time, and you really need to see it up close to appreciate its splendor. The Chicago Lake Shore Hotel is a good choice if you are looking for a nearby place to stay. The distance is about two miles from Washington Park and the fountain. Amenities in this pet-friendly hotel near Lake Michigan include a free area shuttle, outdoor pool, and luggage storage.

Oz Park

Fans of the Wizard of Oz will love this unique spot in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood. In Oz Park, you will find many statues of important Wizard of Oz characters like the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion, and of course Dorothy and Toto. Children like to play in Dorothy’s Playlot, and adults like to stroll through the Emerald Garden. There’s even a Yellow Brick Road! This park is a nice alternative to the much more often visited and highly touristic Millennium Park. The Majestic Hotel is within walking distance of Lincoln Park. This Lakeview boutique hotel offers rooms with air conditioning, satellite TV, and free Wi-Fi.

The International Museum of Surgical Science

The Gold Coast-based International Museum of Surgical Science educates its visitors about a variety of topics in the field of Western and Eastern medicine practices. Exhibitions display the art of surgical science. The Gold Coast also houses a large variety of luxurious hotels, such as the W Chicago Lakeshore Hotel. This hotel overlooks Lake Michigan, so you’ll have an excellent view during your stay. The hotel also has a restaurant, and you can end the day with a drink at the bar. The nearby Homewood Suites by Hilton Chicago Downtown Hotel is also a suitable accommodation option.

A New Look at Lesser Known Tourist Spots in Chicago

No matter if you are into small and uncommon museums, local music festivals, uniquely themed parks, or unseen architectural artworks. In Chicago, you will always find some undiscovered jewels that will catch your interest. Spend some days avoiding the usual tourist attractions, and you might end up being positively surprised about all that is not yet discovered by the big crowds. Book a comfortable Chicago hotel near one of your favorite attractions, and relax in style after a day of strolling on the unbeaten paths of the Windy City.