Tag Archives: island

And the winner of the World Luxury Hotel Awards 2017 goes to….

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And the winner of the World Luxury Hotel Awards 2017 goes to….

…drumroll…

JUMERIRAH VITTAVELI, MALDIVES!!!

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The 11th edition of the awards took place at the Kulm Hotel St. Moritz, Switzerland, where Jumeirah Vittaveli was named the 2017 Global Hotel of the Year. Winners are based on the votes of 300,000 travellers who were invited to vote for their favorite luxury hotel over a four-week period.

 

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Located a speedy 20-minute speedboat ride from Malé, Jumeirah Vittaveli offers supreme diversity and subtle luxury. The resort comprises 89 villas and suites each with their own swimming pool and direct access to the beach or lagoon.

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The resort provides extensive leisure and wellness facilities. One of the highlights is an award-winning Talise Spa, offering Asian inspired treatments in a lush, garden setting.

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The most amazing accent about the spa is that the team produces their own island-made 100% pure Coconut Oil! This luxurious oil is utilized in select signature treatments and available for purchase at the spa boutique. They also offer Coconut Oil making demos!

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The resort also offers complimentary bicycles, fitness center, kids club, yoga areas and four exquisite restaurants, a pool bar as well as a beachside cocktail lounge.

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All these amenities are great additions to the already naturally gorgeous atmosphere surrounding you on this beautiful island!

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-Karen Bahri

 

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Stilt Fishing – a unique attraction on the shores of Sri Lanka!

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Stilt Fishing – a unique attraction on the shores of Sri Lanka!

Stilt fishing is a method of fishing unique to the island of Sri Lanka. The fishermen sit on a cross bar called a petta tied to a vertical pole and driven into the sand a few meters offshore. From this high position, the fishermen casts their lines and wait until a fish comes along to be caught. One may assume this to be an ancient practice with an engaging history, but stilt fishing is actually a recent tradition.

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The practice is believed to have started some 70 years ago during World War II; when food shortages and overcrowded fishing spots prompted some clever men to try fishing on the water. At first they started fishing from wrecks of capsized ships and downed aircraft, then some began elevating their stilts in coral reefs. The skills were then passed on to at least two generations of fishermen living along a 30 km stretch of southern shore between the towns of Unawatuna and Weligama.

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The practice is unlikely to last much longer other than as a tourist attraction as the catch is pretty much always meager. The 2004 tsunami that devastated much of the Indian Ocean coastline forever altered the Sri Lankan shoreline and reduced access to fish using this method. Fishing also stops entirely during the annual monsoons. The best time is when the currents are flowing in the right direction; which is mostly between October and December during sunset. And the sunsets are as beautiful as ever, which makes for amazing photographs!

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Today, few fisherman are willing to pass their stilts to their sons, instead renting them to “actors” who pose as fishermen for photographers and tourists. Definately one of the many attractions to check out on the spectacular island of Sri Lanka!

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-Karen Bahri

Burano, Italy – walking through a Kaleidoscope of Colours!

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Burano, Italy – walking through a Kaleidoscope of Colours!
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Colorful Burano, Italy!

I know you all may be noticing a pattern on my last few posts, as well as some of my instagam photos so far this year. It’s all kind of collaging (or kaleiding hehe) into a huge “cute European village” type vibe. But hey! I’ve been discovering these places and they are toooo cuuuutttee not to share with my Kaleidoscopers, so why not, hey!

This time, I am taking you all to a little Island off the northern coast of Italy!

Grab some vino & leggo to BURANOOOOO!!! 

Burano is an island in the Venetian Lagoon, in northern Italy. Similar to Venice, it’s like an archipelago of four islands linked by bridges. The island is known for its chic lace work and brightly colored fisherman’s cottages!

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The island is situated 4 miles from Venice. You can take a “vaporetti”, which is a Venetian motorboat, and be there in about 40 minutes which adds to the thrill of visiting this vibrantly colorful, yet calm and happy place!

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The current population of Burano is about 2,800. There are many other small islands surrounding Burano as well, but out of them Burano has a high population density at more than 13,000 per square kilometer!That is more than twenty times the density of neighboring island, Mazzorbo. It’s also almost entirely covered by residential buildings, with very few small green areas.

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Burano’s small, brightly painted houses are popular among the artists circle. The colors of the houses follow a specific system originating from the golden age of its development. Therefore, if someone wishes to paint their home, they have to send a request to the government, who will respond by making notice of the certain colors permitted for that lot.

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Visiting this island is like stepping back in time. On the island’s meandering narrow streets, you will see laundry strung up between buildings, bicycles &  boats parked up, as well as many ladies sitting in the sun, chatting with their neighbors, while creating delicate Burano lace. Lace is part of the island’s history dating way back to around the 16th century.

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Don’t be fooled by the size of this charming little island! There is actually quiet a bit to do! The colorful houses and buildings make for a very picturesque, enjoyable stroll on these breathtaking streets and lots of brilliant photo taking! You can also  browse through one of the many lace shops, which some may be a bit on the pricier side, but definitely worth every penny.

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It’s key to note that while arriving in Burano, you will find yourself heading down a narrow street full of shops selling lace, including pretty umbrellas and fans. This after passing by one of the few green areas on the island, of course! These shops are highly attractive and very few people can manage to escape from this little street without being lured into one of the gorgeous shops full of colorful scarves, dresses and other such accessories and souvenirs.

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You can also pay a visit to the Museo del Merletto (Museum of Lacemaking). There are many lively shops, cafes, bars and even a cinema as well! As you wander across the many little bridges, you will notice the somewhat ominously leaning bell-tower of The Church of San Martino.

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The pictures alone speak for themselves – Burano is a charming, breathtaking  and enchanting island full of a kaleidoscope of colors for photography nuts and well worth the effort!

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-Karen Bahri

Life is an adventure! Visit Guam!

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I know since the year started, my blog has been less travel (although in my mind, I can give you reason on how it relates to “travel” in maybe an unconventional form) my blog has turned into a more personal diary of what has been going on in my life, I guess. I will include entries about myself and my family and personal thoughts and feelings. This is MY kaleidoscope, after all! But anyways, back to an entry focused more on the topic…

I discovered Guam by mistake while researching something else. Now it’s def on my bucket list! From time to time, I like to look up far off, out of the loop places and see if they are worth checking out in some point of my life. I like to keep my bucketlist exotic, ya know. One life, live it to the max and go places you never thought you would ever! That’s that way I want to live my life. There is definitely a lot to this exotic little island!! I never even knew it’s considered a U.S. territory and we don’t need a passport to go there! Keep reading if you are ready to explore a fascinating, beautiful, far off and exotic island!

Guam is also called “Guahah” by it’s natives. When I hear the word “Guam” it reminds me of Guava fruit for some reason lol. Maybe they have good guava or other tropical fruit on the island? I am sure they do! They get a lot of Japanese tourists, since Japan is right there. It’s the largest and most southern island of the Mariana Islands. they speak English as well as their native language called Chamorro. The culture of the natives are a mix of Asian, Spanish and American. They are considered warm & friendly and the crime rate is low on the island.

Tumon is the popular tourist hub and known for it’s beautiful world renowned beaches! They are said to have the perfect temperature so you can enjoy splashing around! What’s insane is that you can find star-sand beaches (!) (?) Ritidian beach is said to be hands down the best beach. They have plenty of shopping and nightlife in Tumon. Guam has a great deal of water sports and activities to take part in.

The sunsets will take your breath away!!!! Shades of orange and pink contrast against the deepening shade of the ocean to create the perfect ambiance for a romantic walk on the beach. This is a perfect honeymoon destination!

The only thing I didn’t notice is that I don’t think that they have many of those over water bungalows as they do in like Bali or the Maldives. If I find a resort that has one, I would still consider it a honeymoon destination. An over water bungalow is high on my check list as far as a honeymoon destination. Otherwise I would just consider this for another special occasion get away! Well, since it IS on my bucket list now, and I am a woman of my word, the day I check it out, I will give you my full “after” review. For now, check out some photos I found and dream about it with me:

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Guam, Tumon Bay, Reef Hotel.

Guam, Tumon Bay, Reef Hotel.

 

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TUMON BEACH AREA:

 

TUMON CITY VIEWS:

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RITIDIAN BEACH:

SUNSETS IN GUAM: