Alexandria, Virginia is located just across the Potomac River from Washington D.C. Founded in 1749, and incorporated in 1779, Alexandria became a major port of entry to the newly founded United States of America. Alexandria was also home to Revolutionary War General Light Horse Harry Lee, and his son Robert E. Lee.
If you like to use history as a destination, Alexandria is the place to go. Dozens of attractions dot the streets of Alexandria.
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum boasts such guests as George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. The tavern and hotel were built in 1785 and 1792 respectfully and are still open for business.
The George Washington Masonic Memorial was patterned after the lighthouse is Alexandria, Egypt. It’s a must see for Masons and non-masons alike. There is an abundance of early American history located on the fourth floor of this museum.
The building in which The Torpedo Factory Art Museum is housed was built in 1918 and as the name implies was used to manufacture torpedoes for World War 1. Today the building houses six art galleries, 82 working artists studios and the Art League School and Archeology Museum.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Museum has exhibits of ordinary inventions that most people use everyday. It’s an interesting museum that shows you where and how daily use items were conceived.
Maybe you’re more into hiking and biking? That’s great because Alexandria can fill your day with nature trails, bike trails, and when you get tired of biking and hiking you can swim.
You can start at the Mount Vernon Forest Trail and trace the steps of the United States’ first President. Follow trails that George Washington himself walked upon. The nature walk leads you past mature oak trees, Washington’s cobble quarry, and over a 100-foot-wide ravine.
Bike the Alexandria Heritage Trail. It’s 22 miles in length and is filled with more than 40 museums and historic parks. You can learn the heritage of Native Americans, colonists, African Americans, and the Civil War just to name a few.
The Mount Vernon Trail, not to be confused with the Mount Vernon Forest Trail, is an 18.5 mile trail that follows the Potomac River and goes from George Washington’s Estate at Mount Vernon to Theodore Roosevelt Island. You can jog, bike or run.
Now for some real fun, stop by the Cameron Run Regional Park. This seasonal Park has water-slides, a wave pool, lap pool, batting cages and miniature golf.
There are a number of tours a visitor can take of Alexandria. Join in the Alexandria Scavenger Hunt, where you’ll learn about the rich history while getting to know the locals as they clue you in on where to go to find your next answer.
The Alexandria Historic Pub Crawl is a fun way for just the two of you or a whole group to see the town. There are over 200 pubs and restaurants within 15 blocks of the downtown.
Maybe you like the spooky side of life. Always looking over your shoulder? Maybe there’s a ghost watching you. Take the Toast the Ghost tour in downtown Alexandria where you’ll be lead along the streets by lantern light hearing ghost stories, unsolved mysteries and tales of nasty ghosts seeking revenge. Take the tour it will make a believer out of you.
Alexandria, Virginia has a great deal to offer to families, thrill seekers and history buffs. Make it your next destination.
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Below are some of the top travel destinations in Australia which I guess no one should miss.
The most active nightlife in all of Australia is in Sydney. This city is the main entry point in Australia for most people. There are so many interesting sites this city offers. From opera house, Darling Harbor with marine aquarium to lots of shopping malls and museums. You can have a complete view of the city from the top of Sydney Tower.
A small city like Cairns has many fantastic things you can do. Going to Great Barrier Reef offers unique views of the rainforest. Watch waterfalls and further visit to Port Douglas and Daintree National Park which has biggest variety of plants.
Pretty beaches of Gold Coast are out of the ordinary for surfers and people who love beaches. With many waterfalls, vegetation and fauna; the adjoining mountains and National Parks are not to be missed at all.
Fraser Island is basically for nature lovers. Magnetic Island is located in front of Townsville with full of incredible beaches. Koalas and Kangaroos can be seen in their natural habitat.
Whitsundays is a paradise for maritime sports with exceptional nightlife and restaurants. This is just the right place to do a tour in a sailboat.
Ayers Rocks are situated in the heart of Australia, close to the city of Alice Springs. All of the backgrounds are deserts full of extraordinary places.
Other top travel destinations in Australia that are breath taking and not to be missed are:
Melbourne is not at all to be missed when travelling to Australia. With its multiculturalism, nightlife with variety of restaurants makes you want more and more of this city. Great Ocean Road which is about three hours driving from Melbourne follows the coast and mountains makes your drive worth.
Kakadu National Park close to Darwin is one of the most beautiful National Parks in Australia with abundance of wild life and wide range of countrywide plants. But it can get difficult to walk alone in the park without finding other tourists.
Tasmania is one of the prettiest places in Australia, and in certain way it might remind some of you of landscapes of New Zealand. Pleasant cities with exceptional road and rail network to visitors. The scenery is the best part, with extravagant beaches.
There are many historical places to visit in Tasmania. The beauty of this city lies in its wildlife, mountains and lagoons.
A Bit of History.
400 years ago the Spanish came to Argentina and brought with them their love of wine. Catholic monks and priests began to grown produce wine for serving at communion and so the Argentine wine industry was born. It was in the 1800s, though, that European settlers arrived with wine expertise, more grape strains and, importantly, the railway. One of the arrivals was a seemingly insignificant dark grape from the south of France. This grape, called Malbec, found its true home in the foothills of the Andes and flourished. With ideal soil and climate in the valleys around Mendoza, Argentina, Malbec wines have become an international sensation, and Argentina is now acknowledged as the home of the best Malbecs.
Malbec red wines go best with red meats, grilled meats and pasta with tomato sauce. It can’t be a coincidence that these foods also read like a list of Argentina’s favourite foods. Malbecs are intense, complex and dark colored. They grow well in the area around Mendoza in the foothills of the Andes. The seasonal climate and low rainfall suit the grapes well. Mendoza sits near the highest peak in the Americas so there is an amazing variety in altitude here too. Higher up vineyards produce a greater balance between color, acidity and sweet tannins.
Go here for the wine and come away loving the scenery. What could be more beautifully indulgent than sipping wine, surrounded by the vineyards where the grapes were grown, with the Argentine beef that the wine was born to go with. In the distance the Andes soar up into Chile with multicolored rocks and snow capped peaks. Outside of the beautiful, modern city of Mendoza there are a whole range of large and small vineyards to visit for personal tours and tastings. All spread out across stunning mountain valleys. You don’t have to love Malbec or even wine to love Mendoza. The area also produces excellent Cabernet Sauvingon, Tempranillo and Chardonnay. It also produces some excellent hiking, rafting and skiing!
Travel to Mendoza via Buenos Aires; the vibrant cultural capital of South America, flights take around 1 hour and 40 minutes. Make the most of your trip to Argentina to discover some more of what the country has to offer. From Mendoza there are easy connections to Iguazu, the most impressive waterfall in the world and to El Calafate; glaciers and wilderness trekking in southern Patagonia. There are also direct flights to Lima, Peru making it easier than ever to combine your Argentine wine vacation with a trip to unforgettable Machu Picchu.
Have you visited Mendoza? How was the Malbec?
When it comes to choosing a vacation spot for yourself and your family, you have a nearly infinite number of options to choose from.
You have so many choices that it can often be overwhelming for most people and because of this, most people end up going to the same old boring vacation spots year after year… but why not shake things up a little bit this year and choose something a little out of the ordinary, a little exotic, and a little extraordinary?
I suggest Lake Arenal, in beautiful Costa Rica.
Lake Arenal isn’t your ordinary average Lake, in fact it’s not even a real Lake; it’s man-made. What makes this lake so extraordinary is that it sits beneath the world’s fourth most active volcano, named the Arenal Volcano.
If that wasn’t enough, this lake is located in the northern central area of sunny Costa Rica next to the very tourist friendly town of La Fortuna.
The lake and the volcano are also surrounded by a very ancient rainforest that is completely pristine in its makeup. This monkey filled jungle is a must-see tourist destination of awe-inspiring beauty.
On the Lake itself you can enjoy many things that you would on a normal lake such as world-class windsurfing. You can also fish for a wide variety of exotic fish such as the Machaca bass as well as rainbow bass.
Of course, the real draw is watching the volcano erupt right in front of you. You can actually see the lava slowly creep down the sides of the mountain and on many days you can see fire shoot from the mouth as well!
Don’t worry, it’s perfectly safe when viewed from a distance.
You can also explore the beautiful waterfall about 2 miles east of La Fortuna in the Arenal Volcano National Park and the Cano Negro Reserve. This waterfall is one of the most amazing waterfalls in all of Costa Rica so you don’t want to miss it.
If that wasn’t enough, you can also drive for about an hour south to explore the caves of Venado. These caves were created by various water currents that passed through the limestone rocks of the surrounding area. It took, scientists think, around 7 million years to form all of these caves and you can explore to your hearts content, though I recommend you pick up a tour guide for safety.
Arenal is located between Panama and Nicaragua in Central America. The absolute best time of year to go is roughly November through March. This is referred to as the “dry season” so you can imagine what the rest of the year is like!
Lake Arenal offers the best of both worlds… on one hand you can enjoy a lazy typical tropical South American beach vacation while at the same time with very little effort you can get off the beaten path and see natural wonders that most people would only dream of. This is the sort of vacation that you can talk about for years and years to come.
Are you looking for that next vacation or travel destination for yourself and your family? Are you having trouble sifting through the large stack of popular vacation spots? Are you sick of going to the same boring tourist locations year after year? Then you’ve come to the right place…
Check out Barbuda Island for fun in the sun off the beaten path.
If you’ve never heard of Barbuda Island, it’s okay. Most people have never heard about it which is why it’s such a great travel destination. The island is part of a three island state that is associated with Antigua and Redonda. It is located in the northeastern Caribbean, within the Leeward Islands.
Basically it’s just a 20 minute flight from Antigua. If you’re looking for some adventure, then it’s a three hour boat ride from Antigua.
The best time of the year to go is between November and April. While you’re there you can enjoy the white and pink sandy beaches as well as the coral reefs and even a few shipwrecks. You can also play golf and tennis and enjoy snorkeling and diving, though personally I just like to relax on the beach and there are few places more beautiful in the world to do it.
This is really an unspoiled paradise, not your typical tourist beach destination crammed with overweight tourist jockeying to see the sights. The beaches are relaxed, strewn with seashells and large expanse of calm blue-green Caribbean seawater.
If you’re looking for sea turtles and other tropical fish then check out the shipwrecks. Most of them lie undisturbed in the beautiful blue green turquoise sea water.
If you’re looking for a little action then pop over to nearby Antigua Island to enjoy many regular tourist activities. Antigua is home to over 5,000 graceful frigate birds who live on the northwestern lagoon at the bird sanctuary.
Barbuda is only 15 miles long by about 9 miles wide. The island itself is mostly rocky and fairly flat though covered in bush. The animals you may encounter include dear and boar as well as turtles and guinea fowl. Cattle, horses, and even donkeys wander around with sheep and goats who tend to walk freely in the different villages. Like I said, it’s a very laid-back place.
The island also has a variety of caves that you can explore especially in the Two Foot Bay area. Some caves have a variety of ancient cave drawings on their walls which is kind of neat to see. Some of the caves you can explore on your own but many of them require expert guides and a little bit of training.
If you’re looking for a trendy tourist beach, Barbuda Island is definitely not for you. But if you are looking for pristine untouched beaches and laid-back relaxation without the hustle and bustle of normal tourist activity then this may be just the spot for you and your family. Check it out!