Category Archives: Places

Places to go visit.

Travel To Spain Within Your Budget

The country of Spain is one of the most visited travel destinations in Europe. Spain is located in the Mediterranean region in the European continent and is marked by a remarkable history and culture. The country of Spain is well known for its music, dance, art and literature. It is also famous for producing great literary figures and artists such as Cervantes and Pablo Picasso. The capital of Spain is the city of Madrid. The city of Madrid is very well connected by a large international airport. When you visit the country of Spain you should ensure that you opt for car hire for navigating the length and breadth of this fascinating country.

Accommodation Options in Spain

spainThe country of Spain has wonderful accommodation options for travelers of all kinds of budgets. If you are looking to splurge then there are several luxury hotels in the country which you can choose from for a comfortable stay. The luxury hotels in the country of Spain provide tourists with excellent amenities and services. These include laundry facilities, concierge services, and free car parking, in room appliance, free access to wireless internet, free breakfast and swimming pool. There are also many budget hotels in the country which provide similar facilities for much lower prices. If you are backpacking all over the country then the best accommodation choice for you would be the tourist hostels. The hostels in the country of Spain are known to provide very comfortable bedding facilities for travelers. You can use the car rental options in the country to make your way to an accommodation of your choice and budget.

Sightseeing in Spain

The country of Spain is surrounded by a stunning natural landscape. There are many scenic destinations in the country such as the lovely beaches on the Spanish coast which travelers can visit for a relaxing and rejuvenating experience. The beaches in Spain are the sites of popular tourist activities such as beach volley ball and soccer. There are also very beautiful mountain ranges in Spain such as the Sierra Nevada Mountain range which are excellent hiking destinations for travelers. You can use the car hire options in the country for making your way to the various sites of tourist interest.

Thus, Spain in the Mediterranean region of Europe is a really marvelous country to visit for an enjoyable holiday experience.

Las Vegas History Up To The Present Day

In the 1700’s, Spanish traders traveling to Los Angeles stumbled upon the Las Vegas Valley. The Spaniards discovered that the Las Vegas Valley had an abundance of wild grasses, and a plentiful water supply. They discovered that the traveling time to California was greatly reduced by passing through the Las Vegas Valley. During that time a European name Rafael Riviera also came upon the Las Vegas Valley. The valley was given the name Las Vegas, Spanish for “The Meadows”.

In 1844 an explorer name Captain John Fremont led an expedition to the Las Vegas Valley, where he camped out and later became a important figure in Las Vegas history. The famed Fremont street in downtown Las Vegas is named after him.

In 1855, Brigham Young a Mormon assigned his missionaries to build a fort in the Las Vegas valley. They settled there and planted fruits and vegetables, and also mined lead for bullets. The Paiute Indians had also settled in the Las Vegas valley. The Paiute Indians raided the Mormon fort in 1857, and the Mormons abandon the area.

In the late 1800’s minerals and precious metals were discovered in the Las Vegas valley. The State Land Act of 1885 offered land at $1.25 per acre. Farmers from all over started migrating to the Las Vegas Valley, which an agriculture boom continued for the next 20 years.

Railroad developers were also building a main railway, linking California to Salt Lake City. Las Vegas became a refueling point and rest stop for travelers. In 1905, Las Vegas became a city, which in 1909 Las Vegas was established as Clark County.

By the 1930’s the population had grown to about 5000 in the Las Vegas valley. During that time gambling became legal in Nevada. Legislator felt that taxes from gambling revenue would help fund schools. Las Vegas had fallen on economic hard times due to the great depression. Jobs were created with the development of the Union Pacific Railroad, and the Hoover Dam project.

By the 1940’s, World War II had begun. Las Vegas became an ideal location for the US Military because of its isolated location. Nellis Air force base established it’s home in the Las Vegas valley.

In 1941 the El Rancho Las Vegas hotel was the only hotel on the Las Vegas strip. Once the war ended, other Las Vegas hotels were built and opening for business. New Years Eve 1947, Bugsy Sigel opened the Las Vegas Flamingo hotel. Bugsy Sigel a member of the Meyer Lansky crime family was killed 6 months later. Top entertainers of the world started performing at Las Vegas hotels. Las Vegas was becoming a popular destination for tourist.

By the 1950’s the Las Vegas hotels continued to grow at a rapid pace. In 1950 the Desert Inn hotel opened it’s doors. In 1952 the Sahara hotel and the Sand’s hotel opened for business also. The Riviera hotel became the first high rise hotel on the Las Vegas strip in 1955. During that time the Fremont hotel in downtown Las Vegas was built. Other Las Vegas hotels such as the Tropicana hotel, Hacienda hotel, Dunes hotel, and the Stardust hotel were built as well.

moulinThe famous historical Moulin Rouge Hotel and Casino opened in 1955. This Las Vegas hotel, located just north of downtown Las Vegas was built to accommodate the growing population of African Americans that had migrated to Las Vegas during the Railroad and Hoover Dam construction era. This Las Vegas hotel changed ownership many times over. The heavyweight champion of the world Joe Louis was once one of the owners. The Moulin Rouge hotel has a very colorful past, which people from all over the world came there to enjoy the casino and the entertainment. In 1992 the Moulin Rouge Hotel was declared a national historic site.

With the growing population and booming tourist business in Las Vegas, the need for a convention facility center became prevalent. In 1959 the Las Vegas Convention Center opened it’s doors. The Las Vegas Convention center was able to accommodate over 6000 people. Las Vegas became a top destination for conventioneers, which it continues to thrive today.

During the 1950’s and 1960’s Las Vegas was thriving. Las Vegas was known as the playground for adults. The “Lido de’ Paris” show from France opened at the Stardust hotel. The Follies Bergere show opened at the Tropicana Hotel. Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack, with Sammy Davis and Dean Martin became one of the top shows in Las Vegas.

In 1968 Circus Circus hotel opened it’s doors, which this Las Vegas hotel catered to families with children. Hotel financers wanted to capitalize on making Las Vegas a destination for everyone, not just adults.

A new era begin in the late 1970’s, when gambling was legalized in Atlantic city. The beginning of the mega resort boom begin in Las Vegas. Theme hotels such as Treasure Island, Mirage hotel, Excalibur hotel, Luxor hotel, and the MGM were just some of the hotels to pop up. Downtown Las Vegas was enjoying it’s boom as well, with eventually the creation of the new Fremont Street Experience.

Las Vegas has become the #1 tourist destination. Las Vegas hotels have a lot to offer for the whole family. Luxury rooms, top entertainment, fantastic food, and many great attractions are what has made Las Vegas the top tourist destination in the world.

Best Trips in Off-Season Travel to Europe

Over the past decade, I have had several opportunities to visit Europe. I traveled at various times throughout the year, and I have found that I prefer to avoid the busy summer months and travel in the off-season, instead.

There are many advantages to off-season travel. Air travel is often cheaper, and hotels are frequently willing to bargain. It is easier to get into the major museums, and popular sights are less crowded. During the off-season, I have found festivals and cultural events that draw few tourists but are very popular with the local residents. Attending these events has given me the opportunity to experience the local culture on a deeper level.

Planning Is Important

If you have a particular destination in mind, check out the sights and activities you are interested in. Tourist facilities in many areas have reduced hours or may even be closed for the season. Some activities are only available on weekends. Museums may close for restoration activities during the winter months. Trains and airlines adjust their schedules based on ridership. With fewer tourists riding, trips to certain areas may be less frequent.

While English-speaking guides and translators are common all over Europe during the summer months, it may be more difficult to find English speakers in some of the smaller towns during the off-season. It is always a good idea to learn a few phrases in the local language or carry a phrasebook so you can converse with locals who do not speak English.

The off-season is also convention season for many European business organizations, and hotel rates skyrocket during the convention dates. Check convention schedules with the local tourist offices and avoid these times if possible.

Pay Attention to Weather Reports

winterWinter temperatures even in Southern Europe may be cold. Rain is common, and snow falls in the northern latitudes. While a blanket of snow on the streets of Paris may be a beautiful sight, you might not enjoy it much if you forgot to bring shoes that keep your feet warm and dry. Yahoo! Weather is a great resource with current information about climate and temperatures.

Pack Appropriately

Take some warm clothing, but dress in layers. While cold temperatures, rain, and snow can be prevalent, warm spells can still occur, even in Scandinavia.

Winter Day Trips In Arizona

In Arizona, you can see a bit of everything. Phoenix offers fine dining and big-city comforts. Flagstaff has cool snowy getaways. Wickenburg brims with true cowboy adventure. Sonoita pours fine wine. And the back roads in between beckon with romance-kindling adventure.

Sunrise in Wickenburg

Wickenburg is a quick and painless drive from the Phoenix area — jump on U.S. 60 and head northwest. Really, it is a perfect destination for an early-morning sunrise hike. I suggest the Hassayampa River Preserve, which is a lush stream-side oasis. I also have enjoyed hiking Vulture Peak trail. It is well maintained and a relatively easy hike. The trail is filled with interesting rock formations, plus Saguaro, Cholla, Palo Verde, Mesquite, Ocotillo, and Jojoba. Sunrise should be gorgeous from either location.

After your sunrise hike, get breakfast at one of the many cafes in downtown Wickenburg. Just pick one — I haven’t stumbled on a bad one yet. From here, amble over to the Desert Caballeros Museum or a dude ranch like Rancho de Los Caballeros. Wickenburg has more dude ranches than any other city in the U.S.

Arizona Jeep Tours

azThis stretches the idea of a day trip. Technically, it’s a tour, but the best type of day trip is one where neither of you have to drive. Instead, you can snuggle up in the backseat and let Arizona Jeep Tours’ Fred Amator do the hard work. Spend a day learning about Arizona history, geology, and desert wildlife. Pick from five different trips — personally, I took the Castle Hot Springs trip and learned much about the area. The two of you will have a new appreciation for Arizona, and neither has to worry about arguments over who will drive or why you got lost. Leave the maps and the GPS to Fred. All trips are spun with the good-old-boy charm of a real Arizona native. You can arrange a meeting with Fred on his side of town or yours.

Sledding and a Snowball Fight

It may seem strange to my friends on the East Coast, but sometimes, you just want to feel cold, which is why we have Northern Arizona just a short trip away. Much like Northern California is wholly different from Southern California, so is true in Arizona. There have been years on record where Flagstaff was the snowiest city in the country. Yes, a city in Arizona was the snowiest! Wing Mountain Snow Play Area is an easy spot to find and filled with good sledding. You can rent a sled at almost any general store on the way there. Truth be told, if you head toward Snow Bowl Ski Resort from downtown Flagstaff, there are plenty of good spots to stop, have a snowball fight, then build a snowman.

Picnic in Arizona’s Little Tuscany

The rolling grassy hills of Elgin and Sonoita are something to behold and decidedly un-Arizona. You’re rolling down the I-10 in Creosote Desert, but when you exit for Sonoita, suddenly everything changes. I smile and feel a bit like I’ve been transported to Tuscany every time I take that exit. Speaking of Italy, grab a bottle at Lightning Ridge Cellars. They specialize in Italian-style wines and craft earthy reds that scream out for good food, particularly the Montepulciano. Next, head to one of Arizona’s original wine makers, Sonoita Vineyards, for a picnic. Resting atop a beautiful hill, it’d be a great place to pop the big question or even stage your own wedding. In the meantime, they sell picnic food, or you can bring your own. Throw out a blanket or use one of their tables.

Horses, Hiking, and Hohokam

Simply said, chicks dig horses. So a day of riding at White Tanks Riding Stables is an easy way to keep the woman in the relationship happy. But let’s pretend that maybe one of you is allergic to horses (sorry about that). Well, the White Tank Mountains offer a variety of trails and excellent wildlife viewing. Enjoy Arizona’s mild winter, and feel fit. Keep a lookout for rattlesnakes, deer, coyotes, mountain lions, Gila monsters, and more. Also, the White Tank regional library offers plenty of books on the Southwest. The library has huge windows and a view of the entire valley. It would be a great spot to hit up on a rare rainy day. Just find a corner seat and snuggle up with a good book on the Hohokam or Arizona’s native cacti.