March 25

Why Is Cleveland, Ohio An Amazing City For Millenials?

vvuOhio was listed as one of the most popular states Americans are moving to in 2016. The cities in the great Midwestern state are beginning to catch the eye millennials that are looking for a place to settle with better housing prices and an exciting economy. One of those cities is Cleveland: a city on the rise. Here are some cool and interesting facts you should know before you decide to make your move to Cleveland, Ohio.

1. No one bats an eye at a little snow. Depending on where you are moving from you might already be used to having a white winter, but if your not then realize that natives in this town and handle the cold with stride.

2. The average commute in this city is 23 minutes or less. For some people used to driving through hoards of traffic every morning and evening this number is probably sounding really good right about now.

3. It’s more diverse than people think. There are 117 different nationalities that call this city home. Visit Slavic Village or Little Italy to get a taste of some good old world cooking.

4. The job market is on the rise. Downtown Cleveland has really been transforming itself over the past few years and there is a booming job market for people in the Biotechnology, Advanced Manufacturing and IT fields.

5. Who can forget the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame. This is a legendary place and people travel from all over the world to see it. Although once you are a local you might be sick of having to take all your out-of-town guests here but let’s face it, it’s still pretty awesome!

6. Being at the edge of Lake Erie, some would consider it the Midwest’s version of a coastal city. While it might not be the Pacific Ocean, there is sand and when there is sun the lake is alive with all sorts of beach time activities.

7. Say what you might about Cleveland’s sports teams but what other city has three major teams in baseball, basketball and football with all their stadiums within walking distance of each other? If you like sports this might be the perfect trifecta.

8. Local foods and local brews. Downtown Cleveland is becoming all about restaurants with locally sourced food and craft breweries galore.

Category: Travel | Comments Off on Why Is Cleveland, Ohio An Amazing City For Millenials?
March 16

Masquerade Masks and Decadence

ftThink Phantom of the Opera, think masked balls, think period dress and painted white faces. The Venice Carnival is the annual event that boasts elegance, fun and plenty of great entertainment.

The Venice Carnival takes place every year on the picturesque islands in the province of Veneto. The Carnival begins two Saturdays before Ash Wednesday (a religious observance begins) and finishes on Shrove Tuesday, also known as Pancake Day.

Celebrations last for twelve magnificent days and nights with celebrations taking form in performance art, music, theatre, staged shows and culinary delights.

Where does it take place?

The Carnival takes place on the actual island of Venice, in the Veneto region of Italy. If you look at Italy as a boot, Venice is near the top, a train ride away from the east coast. The city isn’t far from Padua, so if hotels are too pricey in the city, then staying in Padua is your next best option.

If you’re planning on visiting Venice during the carnival, but staying in a different city in Italy, details are found below on how best to get to and from the island. But remember, as Venice is the north of Italy, don’t expect glorious sunshine during February. In fact, you may be faced with rain and strong winds so be prepared to get cold.

History of carnival in Venice

Since the 15th century, the city of Venice has been celebrating the Carnival. Historically, popular entertainment surrounding the event consisted of masked balls and other not-so-animal-friendly activities such as firing live dogs from cannons and bull-baiting.

By the 18th century, the activities of Venice lasted nearly two months into the new year, however, the event became less popular after Napoleon seized control of the city in 1797 and celebrations were completely abandoned when Mussolini prohibited people from wearing masks.

The tradition wasn’t forgotten and the Venice Carnival started again in 1979 and is now proud to be on the stage alongside Rio in Brazil and Notting Hill in London, as one of the world’s grandest carnivals and a must-see expression of decadence.

La Festa delle Marie procession

The celebrations of the Venice Carnival 2016 will start with the La Festa delle Marie procession, which goes on throughout the city. The ‘Festa delle Marie’ evokes the story of when the Venetian Doge offered twelve beautiful but humble Venetian girls fabulous jewels as a bridal dowry. This procession is presented in numerous ways but it is this occasion which celebrates and admires traditional Venetian period costumes.

The ‘Festa delle Marie’ is effectively the grand opening of the carnival on the Saturday, where a masked procession will finish at the main square, Piazza San Marco and is where the ‘Marias’ will be presented to the awaiting crowd.

Gran Ballo delle Maschere

This is the much-awaited Grand Masked Ball. It is this event which is the top highlight of the entire festival. The location of this event alters every year, but this year it will take place in the mighty Palazzo Flangini. The grand palace chosen this year does not disappoint.

Expect lots of colours, surprises and grand entertainment. An incredible banquet dinner is offered with lots of complimentary drinks of the best Italian produce. During the dinner, Venetian and fantasy characters perform during the ball.

The celebrations continue on through the night after dinner, where the ground floor hosts DJs who pipe music through a sizable sound system.

Anyone who has a proper costume, a mask and is capable of dancing the quadrilles and other various step dances, passed down through the ages is more than welcome to enter and take part.

Festa Veneziana

This is a well-loved water parade of the Carnival. With music and lots of energy, this parade will sail along the Canal Grande to the district of Cannaregio.

There, the audience can watch these magnificent and unique boats float by. It is this part of the carnival where all the gastronomic stalls are with delicacies and other food specialities of the region being on offer.

This is one of the glorious Italian foodie events which boasts the freshest, most traditional treats out there. So after enjoying the first part of the Festa Veneziana on Saturday 23rd January at 6pm at the same location, go to Rio di Cannaregio for a wander and some incredible food. Here, you really see local traditions at its best. Not to be missed.

Why the Famous Masks?

A number of the masks represent characters of the Commedia dell’Arte. The white-beaked mask is the plague-doctor. The beak resembles a doctor’s breathing apparatus that held a vinegar doused-sponge and herbs, thought to ward off the bubonic plague.

The Dogues were depicted by the “danger masks” that were allowed. They passed laws which limited their use within the carnival. If masks were worn at an alternative time of year, a severe penalty was issued.

The masks are what make the Venice Carnival so unique. Wearing a mask hides the social status (and identity) of the person behind it. With this disguised aspect, Venice briefly overthrows her social order and allows all to be seen as equal and to behave accordingly.

Category: Travel | Comments Off on Masquerade Masks and Decadence
March 15

7 Reasons Austin, Texas Is A Great Place To Live

vvfAustin, Texas is a city that has been creating a lot of buzz lately. Once upon a time it was under the shadow of the lone star states bigger cities like Houston and Dallas, but Austin has really made a name for itself with its quirky and unique personality. Weather it’s the vintage stores, extremely sunny weather, amazing Tex-Mex food or perhaps its pulsating music scene there are so many reason to fall in love with Austin, Texas. Here are a few reasons why you should consider moving to Austin!

1. In Austin tacos will become on of your basic food groups. Literally everything from your morning eggs to your strawberry dessert is going to now be coming to you in a small soft corn delivery system.

2. It is the live music capitol of the world. On a random Monday night Austin boasts that they have at least 30 live concerts and come the weekend it seems like you would have to stay alone in your apartment with a pillow over your head to not hear some live jams. Music events like SXSW have made a yearly pilgrimage to this city a must do for music enthusiasts everywhere.

3. This is a bike friendly city so get ready to explore downtown on one of Austin’s every expanding bikes lanes. Think of how much you will be saving each year on gas! Also this will help you to burn off all those tacos and queso you will surely be eating!

4. You will be living in an entrepreneur’s paradise. Austin is a city that really promotes the American spirits of being your own boss. Unlike other cities, it is a lot easier to get a business license and there is no personal state income tax.

5. Affordable housing means you can live like a king, well sort of. Austin has a considerably lower cost of living than most other metropolitan cities that are this jam-packed with art and culture.

6. They are completely batty here in Austin. I am not referring only to the slogan “Keep Austin Weird” but to the fact that it is home to a shocking amount of bats. The Congress Avenue Bridge is home to 1.5 million bats during March-November. This is the largest urban bat population in the world and in Austin it is definitely a ‘thing’ to watch them fly off into the night to eat an estimated 20,000 pounds of insects every night!

7. If all these other fun facts didn’t excite you and make you want to move to Austin, Forbes magazine listed it as the 4th most secure city to live in America. This takes into account crime, job opportunities, housing prices and life expectancy.

Category: Travel | Comments Off on 7 Reasons Austin, Texas Is A Great Place To Live
March 12

Travel Guide – Los Angeles

ghLos Angeles is located in the Southern California on the West Coast of United States. Los Angeles is one of the most significant places to visit, in every corner you can experience a different culture.

In this guide, I’ve included the 17 things you don’t want to miss, and will take your experience to the next Level!!

1. Down Town

Down Town is the central business district of Los Angeles and home to some of the most outstanding examples of American’s civic architecture.

2. Olvera Street

Is the oldest part of Down Town in Los Angeles and also known as the Mexico town.

3. Union Station

One of the World’s greatest railway stations and the largest railroad passenger terminal in the Western United States. What makes this station famous, is that it has been featured in around 30 movies.

4. The Little Tokyo

The Little Tokyo or J-Town as the locals know it, – is the ultimate destination for some of the city’s best Japanese Restaurants. Also, home to Buda’s temples, galleries, and historical museums.

5. Walt Disney Concert Hall

This incredible piece of architecture was designed by Frank Gehry and opened back in 2003. Is the fourth hall of the Los Angeles Music Center and home to LA Phil Harmonic Orchestra.

6. Los Angeles County Museum of Art

The art museum is located on Wilshire Boulevard in the Miracle Mile vicinity of Los Angeles. LACMA is on Museum Row, adjacent to the La Brea Tar Pits.

LACMA’s collections encompass the geographic world and virtually the entire history of art with more than 100, 000 objects dating from ancient times.

7. La Brea Tar Pits

At La Brea Tar Pits and George c page museum, you can explore mammals and insects dating thousands of centuries back in time. The museum has re-created a prehistoric garden.

8. Rodeo Drive

Rodeo Drive, – in the heart of Beverly Hills – The world’s most expensive and exclusive shopping area.

9. Hollywood

The world’s famous center – “The entertainment Industry”. Track down your favourite star at the Walk of Fames.

10. Griffith Park

Is one the largest and wildest urban parks in North America. Here you can enjoy panoramic views of LA. Visit the Griffith Observatory to enjoy some astonishing views. (Is steel FREE of charge).

11. Universal Studios

It is the oldest, continually running movie studio in America. It features a Theme Park based on its blockbusters movies and popular TV Shows.

The famous attraction here is the studio tour – You may have a Deja Vu here, as lots of the themes that you will see have been used on popular TV shows and movies. The theme-park is also a family-friendly, and one of the favourites parks for families!

12. Disneyland Park

This Disneyland Park It is the only theme park designed and built under the direct supervision of Walt Disney. And, since its opening, 1955, has received 630 million guests who have enjoyed in seeing the most loved Disney’s character come back to live!

13. The Port Of Los Angeles

Is the Biggest container port in the USA, and here you can find the USS Iowa Museum. The USS Iowa is a World War 2 battleship. Enjoy the experience!

14. The Aquarium Of The Pacific

At this magnificent Aquarium, you can find 500 marine species. Touch tanks & behind-the-scenes tours are available.

15. Long Beach

Was ones the birthplace of the California surfing scene. However, nowadays is ideal for families too!

16. Santa Catalina Island

Take the boat to explore the magnificent Island of Catalina. You will find thousands of visitors who want to escape the mainland for a while, and relax.

17. Santa Monica

One of the most popular resort Towns in the US. Here is the ultimate Sun, sandy beaches, and the Las Vegas Lifestyle. Get Ready for an amazing ride!

This is the Vegas Guide – If you enjoy it, make sure you like it and share it around, and if you want to add anything on the list above, comment below and let us know about it – we highly appreciate it

Category: Travel | Comments Off on Travel Guide – Los Angeles
March 12

How to Plan That Perfect Vacation to the Hill Station of Ooty

klHill stations are the best respite to a tiring long spell of monotonous schedule. It rejuvenates your body and soul giving you the breath of fresh air you have been long needing. India has a host pristine hill stations in the edges of all its boundaries. These hill stations are not located in the central region of the country but mostly along the edge of its boundary. Each region has its fair share of hill stations. One of the top hill stations in the southern region is the lovely hill station of Ooty. Ooty’s beauty has been spoken off far and wide and people visit this hill station from everywhere. Since the time of the British rule, to this day, Ooty has always been one of the most desired summer resort for India.

So what should you expect from Ooty? Well if you have been planning a vacation to this place since a long time, you will probably have an idea of what to expect and what to do during your time there, but there are many people who are clueless. The main tourist attractions of Ooty are listed down below for those people.

Ooty Botanical Gardens

This is one of the oldest gardens in the country and spreads over a massive area of around 55 acres. The botanical gardens are spread over six sections. The main attraction to this botanical gardens is the fascinating 20 million-year-old fossilized tree. Apart from this, there are various kinds of fauna found in this gardens from shrubs, flowers, and trees. If you time your visit during the month of May, you will get the opportunity to be a part of the flower festival.

Ooty race course

One of the oldest and most renowned race courses in India, the Ooty race course is still one of the most popular places in the country people come to witness horse racing and take part in a game of polo. The race course is 130 years old and to witness a race, you will have to time your visit between April and June.

Churches in Ooty

Not only do the houses and cottages in Ooty showcase the architectural influence of the British, even the big churches found in the hill station were all built by the British in their style of architecture. These churches and mini cathedrals were mostly built around the 1800s in Gothic architectural style. If you are a Christian you have more reasons to pay a visit to these places.

Take a scroll of all the surroundings!

Ooty is popular for its tea gardens. It is inevitable to catch a glimpse of the beautiful tea gardens as you walk by or drive by the town but make it a point to go into an actual plantation area and see how it feels like. It is truly something else! And later you can visit the Ooty Gymkhana Club where you will find a beautiful scenic space where you can just hang out or have a small picnic. The place also has an 18-hole golf course, restaurant, bar and many other indoor games as well.

So, after you have completed all of these, you can revisit the same places or try something else. Ooty, the small hill station will never cease to amaze you every step of the way!

Category: Travel | Comments Off on How to Plan That Perfect Vacation to the Hill Station of Ooty