Author Archives: Borderless Travels Team

About Borderless Travels Team

Our writing team works hard to share relevant and in depth travel advice, experiences, and knowledge so you can experience and learn about the world on your own terms with the help of Borderless Travels. From Toronto to Tokyo read, watch, get inspired, and learn how to travel the world with Borderless Travels as your guide.

Home / Europe / Europe on Rails| Top 7 Scenic Train Rides in Europe

Europe on Rails| Top 7 Scenic Train Rides in Europe

Updated: September 25, 2017
By: Borderless Travels Team

Taking the Train in Europe

You’ve had your morning coffee, grabbed your bags, and you’re headed out towards the train station. You’re just super excited to get to your destination! Unfortunately, that enthusiasm usually lasts until you hear it’s an 8-hour trip. How many of you doze off on your seats and miss out on some spectacularly scenic train rides?

Many people nowadays tend to forget about that timeless saying: “it’s the journey, not the destination that counts”! No matter how cheesy it may sound, you’ll understand its true meaning after you’ve explored these amazing European landscapes – on rails with some great insider tips!

#1 West Rhine Railway, Germany

When it comes to scenic train rides in Germany, this route is best enjoyed during spring when the flowers on the trees are in bloom. Of course, if you travel here in the fall you can observe a fantastic canvas of color as the leaves lose their luscious green.

Aside from the natural landscape, take the chance to wander at the multitude of castles along the Rhine, as the train takes you from Köln to Mainz. To complete the folk tale atmosphere, make sure you drop by the Lorelei statue in St. Goarshausen as well.

Railway Station Germany Taking the Train in Europe

#2 The Scottish Highlands, Scotland

Have you heard about a little franchise called “Harry Potter”? If you weren’t somehow flung through time into the present, then you probably have. Scenic train rides through the Scottish Highlands (from Fort William to Mallaig and back, to be exact) take you through such magical places as the Glenfinnan Viaduct.

Maybe you’re not a fan of the series itself. Still, nobody can deny that the sight of Scottish plains and their lochs and rivers brings a metaphorical tear to the eye of onlookers. Blast “The Flower of Scotland” in your headphones while admiring the landscape for the full experience.

Eilean Donan Caslte Scotland Taking the Train in Europe

#3 Groningen to Amsterdam, The Netherlands

On our recent road trip experience, we’ve stopped by Amsterdam, which holds a special place in Agness’ heart for various reasons. Scenic train rides from Groningen to Amsterdam will allow you to see much of the Netherlands at very little expense. And, hopefully, fall in love with it just as much as Agness ☺.

As you may know, the country is famous for its vast tulip fields all throughout the country, as well as the windmills you can see scattered among them. We recommend the month of April for your ride, as that is your best chance to catch the tulips in full bloom.

Amsterdam Netherlands Holland Canals at Night Taking the Train in Europe

#4 Madrid to Oviedo, Spain

When you distract yourself with a book, tablet, smartphone, or whatever – you never stop and stare out the train window. Think of how many small cozy villages and sparkling, winding rivers you’ve missed just because of it!

Luckily, scenic train rides such as the one from the Spanish capital to Asturias will ensure you get your fill of traditional countryside. On the 5-hour trip, you can also take a peek at the Picos de Europa, which seem almost otherworldly in their magnificence.

Madrid Spain Sunset Taking the Train in Europe

#5 The Flåm Railway, Norway

Frankly, Norway has no shortage of landscapes to delight your eyes, nor is it lacking in routes for travelers’ enjoyment. The Bergen, Rauma and Flåm railways are all part of this web of memorable tracks.

If you’re feeling up for a longer trip with more sights to see, you can hop on a train from Oslo on the way to Bergen and drop off at Myrdal Station. Here you can take the train through the steep climbs, admire the famous Norwegian fjords, and stop for a bit at the Kjosfossen falls for a rest and some neat pictures.

We recommend sitting on the right-hand side for the best possible view of the scenery, but if you can’t make it, the ride is worth it nonetheless. The Norwegian NRK station even has a minute-by-minute video guide of the trip, so you can decide for yourself!

Aurora Borealis Travel Europe by Train

#6 Cinque Terre, Italy

One of the shorter scenic train rides around here (40 minutes), but one that gives you some great hiking opportunities between the villages of Levanto and La Spezia. The five colorful coastal villages are filled with houses which cling to steep terraces, making for a spectacular rural scenery.

The great news is that after the short train trip you can hike all the way back to the starting point, passing through the five connected  villages on the way. Enjoy the vineyards, olive groves, and of course the vast blue of the Ligurian Sea.

Otherwise, atop the highest of cliffs there is a religious sanctuary corresponding to each of the villages. They journey to each of the retreats used to be a method of atonement due to the difficult, steep climb. Nowadays, the journey is much easier and makes for a perfect hiking trail in late spring or the beginning of autumn (when it’s less hot outside).

Manarola Cinque Terre Italy Travel Europe by Train

#7 Inlandsbanan, Sweden

Pack some snacks and refreshments for the trip, because it’s going to be a long one. This is one of the longest scenic train rides on our list, clocking in at 14 hours, with almost 1300 km to travel. The Scandinavian railway adventure takes you across some of the most beautiful scenery this side of the Arctic Circle.

Keep your eyes peeled for the various elk, moose, and bears hanging out in the dense forests filled with pine, birch and spruce. The train takes a longer stop every so often, so you can check out the various museums or just take the chance to have a meal because Sweden has so much variety to offer.

If you love the wilderness and don’t need the luxury, you truly can’t miss the chance to take the Inlandsbanan route!

First Class Train Travel Europe by Train

All Aboard!

It may seem easier to just hop on a plane and get it over with in an hour or so. But, truth be told, some of the most spectacular views won’t be found at 10 km in the air. Rather, the cheaper, relatively hassle-free train route will make for the most priceless memories.

Been to any of these incredible locations?  Share your experience or highlight your favorite European train experience by sharing your comments below!

Written by Agness and Cez of etramping.com

Home / Asia / India / Discover India| Epic Guide to 10 Best India Road Trips

Discover India| Epic Guide to 10 Best India Road Trips

Updated: May 5, 2017
By: Borderless Travels Team

India Rickshaw Driving

Yes, it’s almost the time of the year when you should pack your bags and hit the road, but that great North American & European past-time deserves the new hot spot of Asia. Irrespective of how many birthday candles you have blown out, you need to discover your next Asian road trip adventure.

India and a great road trip across Thailand offer what we hope will show you new world with impressively beautiful routes or destinations that will help you discover Asia in a new light

1. Driving from Mumbai To Goa India

Yes, its legendary ‘Dil Chahta Hain’ route! Fun, frolic and feni! Whenever holiday plans are tossed around, it is hard to resist the charm of this route. Driving on National Highway 48 is a pleasurable experience with several food joints to satiate your taste buds en route before you reach the party state of India— Goa.

Approximate Distance: 607.9 kms (via NH 48)
Estimated Drive Time: 10 hours and 34 minutes

2. Driving from Jaipur to Ranthambore India

Indian Bearded Man

Presenting a perfect mélange of mustard fields and vast open spaces, the highway that takes you from Jaipur to Ranthambore is as picturesque as you wish it to be. Start your journey early in the morning from Jaipur and head over to State Highway 24 which proceeds through various villages, like Lalot, Bassi, etc. Consider yourself lucky, if you spot a tiger in Ranthambore wildlife reserve!

Approximate Distance:  180 kms
Estimated Drive Time:  2 hours and 47 minutes via SH 24

4. Driving from Bengaluru to Nandi Hills India

Fall head over heels in love with the beauty of this beautiful road trip that takes you to Nandi Hills from Bengaluru! Once you reach Nandi Hills, be ready to get the warm welcome from various rare species of birds and plants. Even if you are not a history lover, plan a visit to a Tipu’s Drop, where Tipu Sultan used to condemn prisoners by throwing them to death.

Approximate Distance: 70 kms via NH7
Estimated Drive Time:1 hour and 45 min

5. Driving from Chennai to Munnar India

If the scorching heat of Chennai is bothering you, it’s time to travel to Munnar to enjoy the pleasant weather out there. Once you reach the destination, either unveil your adventure side by indulging in activities like paragliding, rock climbing, etc., or spend time in learning tea-making process. Spending some quality time in the lap of nature is also a nice idea!

Approximate Distance: 586 kms
Estimated Drive Time: 10 hours and 39 mins

6. Driving from Delhi to Agra India

Thanks to Yamuna Expressway, Taj Mahal has come closer to the national capital. In fact, so close that Delhiites can plan their quick weekend getaway to Taj Mahal—the seventh world of the wonder—without complaining about an exhaustive journey through jam-packed roads. After Taj Mahal, it’s time to visit Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri. Get lost on an incredible Agra adventure or enjoy a wonderful Agra tour before adding Jaipur to your list and making it a Golden Triangle! The rich heritage of the city combined with its hospitality reflects the beautiful culture that is so typical of Jaipur. After sightseeing, it is the time to visit Chokhi Dhani, which is an ethnic village offering all types of entertainment options like dance, music, food, etc.; in royal styles.

Approximate Distance: 232.7 kms via Taj Express Highway/Yamuna Expy
Estimated Drive Time: 3 hours and 35 minutes

Taj Mahal from the Arga Fort India

Taj Mahal from the Arga Fort India

6. Driving from Puri to Konark India

Don’t make a mistake of considering this as just any other route. In fact, what it offers is every traveller’s dream. The Puri-Konark highway is one of those fabulous roads to do photography which when you start will compel you to drain the entire battery of your camera. The canopy formed by trees on both sides of the road, the cool breeze and the tranquil beauty will enthrall, now and forever! Famous for the Sun Temple, Konark witnesses the presence of artists, dancers, and musicians throughout the year. Don’t miss Chilka Lake in Konark which is also the second largest lagoon in the world.

Approximate Distance: 35.5 kms
Estimated Drive Time: 49 minutes

7. Driving from Dehradun to Nainital India

A car trip from Dehradun to Nainital is filled with all the scenic beauty, including hills and great weather, making some perfect shots for photography. You can enjoy the delectable taste of cuisines at Chandni Chowk— not the busy area of Delhi but a quiet restaurant on the Mall Road of Nainital. For an adventurous soul like you, there are options like rock climbing, trekking, etc.

Approximate Distance: 285.2 kms
Estimated Time: 7 hours and 26 minutes

Nandi Hills Deccan Plateau Karnataka, India

Nandi Hills Deccan Plateau Karnataka, India

8. Driving from Manali to Leh India

This long stretch that sees visitors only a few months in a year, will test you, scare you and mesmerize you. The experience of riding through tough terrains in your car is something which you will always cherish in your life. With the snow-capped mountains smiling at you and distant valleys welcoming you with their open arms, you will be amazed to see the exotic beauty of Mother Nature.

If you have a travel partner who also knows driving, you can cover the distance between Manali and Leh in one day, otherwise, it is advised to have a stopover at Sarchu before recommencing your journey.

Approximate Distance: 474 kms
Estimated Drive Time: +24 hours

9. Driving from Kalimpong (West Bengal) to Zuluk (Sikkim) India

If you are a daredevil traveller, the trip from Kalimpong to Zuluk is an apt choice for you. Over the last few years, the hilly terrain of Zuluk has risen in popularity as a picturesque tourist spot due to its 32 wild hairpins and bends. The pristine clear view of Kanchenjunga makes the trip memorable.  West Sikkim is also home to the Himalayan Mountaineering Institutes Mountaineering Base Camp.

Approximate Distance: 87.2 kms
Estimated Drive Time: 3 hours 14 minutes

Landscape Gangtok Sikkim, India

Landscape Gangtok Sikkim, India

10. Driving from Assam India to Thailand

Undoubtedly, it is an incredible road trip passing through some of the lovely mountains and valleys in the northeast region, taking travellers to Thailand, all the way from Assam! During your trip, you will pass through stunning Assam, Megalya and Manipur before reaching Myanmar and finally, Thailand.

You can spend a day at Myanmar which is widely appreciated for its exotic cuisines, breathtaking views, and Bagan— the place which is known for its superb architectural splendor. The sunset view of Bagan is something which you should not miss.

Approximate Distance: 2,146.1 kms via Ah Myan Lan
Estimated Time: 43 hours

Logistics: Know how for a successful India road trip

A road trip doesn’t mean impulsive travelling. A lot of preparation needs to be done before heading out. So, let’s start:

Choose your vehicle wisely: Indian roads are always ready to surprise you. You will experience some extreme road conditions and landscapes across its length and breadth. So, don’t underestimate the power of potholes as they can disrupt even the journey of an SUV. Be careful while choosing your vehicle.

Take it easy: A road trip doesn’t mean a long stretch without a halt. Spare a few days to make proper stops at places that interest you. Remember, it is a vacation, and not any exercise regime that you have to complete.

Tuk Tuk Agra India

Tuk Tuk Agra India

Have a Travel Companion: Long drives aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, so if feasible, travel with a person who has good driving skills. Also, if you’re driving with four people, make timely rotation of seats.

Carry essential items: For a smooth journey, carry some basic road trip essentials that you can buy for almost nothing!

  • Flash light
  • First Aid kit
  • GPS/Navigation System
  • Toolbox

Getting your vehicle repaired: Get your car isn’t a rental and your traveling with a friend or buying it make sure it’s repaired and properly functioning before taking a trip. At the service station, inform people about your plans of long drives so that they can do a proper check of your vehicle. Also, while you are on a road, hit a repair centre at the first sign of a trouble. Don’t take any risk on unknown terrains.

Carry cash: Seems simple but is essential because while driving you’ll come across a lot of toll and police check posts. Make sure to carry enough cash to pay toll taxes. Here, change comes handy. As for police check posts, you might be subjected to a lot of checking as your vehicle bears other state’s registration number. Make sure you have all the valid car papers, including driving license, registration paper, car insurance, etc.; to avoid hassles.

Do advance hotel bookings: To avoid any last-minute fiascos, make your hotel bookings much in advance. It will help you get some good rates as well.

Essentials: Two must have insurance policies for a safe and smooth journey

Car Insurance

Never ever start your road trip without having a comprehensive motor insurance for your vehicle. When you are on a road, accidents can happen not because of your carelessness, but because of the fault of the other driver. The reason is simple—You can have a control over you and your vehicle but you can’t control the other person! So, it is best to have a comprehensive car insurance policy which will come handy in case of any accident or loss or damage to your vehicle. For instance, if you meet with an accident, contact your car insurer in India who will come to your rescue and help you recoup all losses or damages.

If a damage happens to another vehicle due to your fault, the insurer will cover third-party liability as well. You can also add roadside assistance cover to your main car insurance policy and enjoy assistance during mishaps, like flat tyre, mechanical breakdown, dead battery, no fuel, etc. Some insurers also arrange for alternative accommodation if the vehicle repairing time is over 12 hours and the breakdown/accident spot is more than 100 kms from the address as stated in the policy document.

Nandi Hills Forest India

Nandi Hills Forest India

Imagine, you are on a Delhi-Agra highway or driving through the Nandi Hills Forest when mechanical failures halt your journey or the fuel tank of your car goes below the reserve point and there is no petrol pump nearby. What will you do—make SOS calls to friends or spend the night on a road? Both the situations are less than ideal.

However, if you had purchased a roadside cover, your one call to the insurer would have helped you. For instance, in case of a flat tyre, the insurer will send a mechanic to replace the flat tyre and in case your vehicle runs out of fuel, the insurer delivers emergency fuel to the breakdown/accident location.

Travel Insurance

Some audacious people also include foreign locations in their road trip itinerary and make only a half of their journey by road and the rest by air. In such a case, it is necessary to buy a travel insurance before embarking on a journey. Though you are on a vacation, accidents and emergency situations aren’t! So, buy a comprehensive travel insurance policy which will come handy in case of situations like a personal accident, losing your passport, a personal liability, etc.

Get Set, Go

Now that you know where to find some of the worlds most epic road trips it’s time to plan your next visit to India and discover your next epic life experience!

Home / Travel Talk / Contributors / 6 Out of the Ordinary Travel Spots for Adventure-Seekers

6 Out of the Ordinary Travel Spots for Adventure-Seekers

Updated: March 20, 2017
By: Borderless Travels Team

Written by Agness and Cez

Greenland

Greenland

 

SONY DSC

Hey, everyone! Agness and Cez of eTramping.com here. As travelers, we all understand getting sick of the usual locations and wanting something different for a change. Well, if you want to go off the beaten path for a while and try something new and exciting – this is a great place to start and these six locations will have something novel for everyone but the most seasoned travelers. Enjoy!

#1 Mexico

Like many other Latin-American countries, Mexico has a problem with drug cartels running rampant. Fortunately, you should be safe if you avoid the border areas of Mexico where such crime is more present. Another frequent problem you need to be wary of is car-jacking. Though, if you’re just headed on holiday you probably won’t bring your car with you unless you’re from the U.S. Still, none of those should deter you from visiting this culturally rich country. Mexico City, Mérida, Todos Santos, and similar places are great and safe options – if you don’t like the extra adrenaline on your trip.

If you just want a resort city to relax in, Huatulco and Playa del Carmen are awesome recommendations. You can catch some crystal-clear water and fun snorkeling sessions around there.

pyramid-1649598_1280

Mexico Pyramid

 

#2 Tanzania

When it comes to African countries, Tanzania is one of the safest alternatives out there. When you compare it to countries like Sudan or Kenya, this one really keeps in line. In any case, you might hear about poor Tanzanians making up stories to get money from unsuspecting tourists.

Surprisingly, the scammers are actually courteous and their stories usually involve wanting to go to school. Some of those may actually be true, but most of the time it’s just for the quick cash.

One word, though: safaris! Nothing is better than roaming the wild plains of Africa. Looking at both gentle and ferocious wildlife living out their existence can be pretty calming. And nerve-wracking – for some!

elephant-660058_1280

Elephants in Tanzania

 

#3 North Korea

No, you will not be arrested for looking at someone the wrong way in North Korea. Despite what you may be hearing from the media, your only worry here is that you won’t be able to visit anything without your tour guide. Other than that, you’re free to enjoy your North Korea tours as much as you want. And yes, you are allowed to take your camera, laptop and smartphone with you, take photos, and intensely immerse in the culture through your guides.

If you have the patience to abide by the rules of the country, you can find a country of immense beauty where the locals strive to show you the best they have.

Whether it’s just for show, or not, is entirely up to you to decide. Just make sure that decision is yours, and are not letting news outlets think for you. Visit the place like we did, instead! From what we experienced, nothing was faked for us. They just showed us the best aspects of their lives, which for some prejudiced people may look fake.

Agness of etramping.com in North Korea

 

#4 Russia

Russia is a massive country. It covers one eighth of the entire planet! As such, you will find an assortment of places – and cultures – to visit here. The country basically warrants four or five visits if you want to get a glimpse of the full Russian experience.

If you visit the major cities such as Moscow or St. Petersburg, you don’t need to throw caution to the wind. Then again, you can’t do that in Los Angeles or New York, either. Just be careful as you would be anywhere else and you should be fine.

Want something more extreme? Visit Yakutsk in the Sakha Republic, where winter temperatures can reach −34 °C on average. It’s really a “cool” place to be. But seriously, the Yakuts are quite interesting. If you’re one of those travelers who prefers meeting people over seeing places, Yakutsk should make it to your list.

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Russian Orthodox Church

 

#5 Vietnam

Ah, Vietnam. The thing about this wonderful country is that people really tend to respect their customs and traditions. Now, this may be good or bad depending on the situation. Agness says she could write a 100-page book of all the blunders she made while we were there.

In fact, here’s a great list of do’s and don’ts while you’re in Vietnam. It’s quite the lifesaver, really. Other than that, the Vietnamese are an easy-going people.

What you’ll notice is that they take their time with everything. This shouldn’t be an invitation to lose your temper, however, as it’s considered extremely rude to them. Take the time to live life at a slower pace. We go too fast sometimes, anyway.

vietnam-1745819_1280

Vietnam

 

#6 Greenland

What better place to get your dose of adventure than near the Arctic Circle? Accessible only through Denmark or Iceland – this land inhabited by Greenland Inuit people will give you both the metaphorical and literal chills. Greenland is considered a great place to witness the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) in their entire splendor.

Plus, if you come here during the six (!) months of winter, you’ll have the chance to go dog sledding. As well as go on ski trips. In fact, there are no roads in between settlements in Greenland, so those are basically your only options if you don’t want to stay in one location during your Arctic trip.

On the other hand, the best feeling is being allowed to hike wherever you want. To people who are used to following rules about hiking this land is a godsend. Just be careful to bring someone experienced along for the trip if you intend to go far away from civilization!

No matter where you travel, it’s a good decision to bring your common sense along for the trip. Yes, you should do your research before visiting any of these places. But there’s only so much information you can digest about a place without having lived there. As such, if your gut tells you that something doesn’t feel right just don’t do it. Your health is much more important than a few fleeting kicks. Think of it this way. If you avoid drawing attention to yourself now, you avoid a few crafty pickpockets. Not to mention getting to visit every place we’ve listed for you today!

P.S. – We can’t stress this enough, try blending in with the locals wherever you go. Flashing the obvious “tourist” signs only invites trouble your way.

Home / Travel Talk / Eating in Portugal| 5 Classics on a Portugal holiday

Eating in Portugal| 5 Classics on a Portugal holiday

Updated: May 25, 2016
By: Borderless Travels Team
eating in portugal

Patel de Nata (Mu Foo/Flickr Creative Commons license)

 

The best food in Portugal is simple and wholesome. Looking for fresh seafood, tender local meat and invigorating spices? You’ve chosen the right place. Here are five great dishes to look out for on your next Portugal holiday.

Pasteis de Nata

You’ll instantly fall in love with this dish. These rich, aromatic custard tarts are a sweet, nourishing snack dusted in cinnamon and powdered sugar. They’re a Portuguese classic and you’ll find them all over the country, but to experience the genuine article head to the Antiga Confeitaria de Belem on the western edge of Lisbon. There they’ve been making Pasteis de Belem for 200 years. It goes terrific with a coffee.

Cataplana

No two Cataplana are the same, so you’ll have to get your skates on and visit a few places to try and find your favorite variation. This surf and turf dish is a mixture of clams, sausage, ham, onions, chilies and tomatoes finished with various spices. The ingredients are sautéed in wine before a slow-cook producing a very satisfying result. The dish gets its name from the pan in which it is traditionally cooked and served in.

Açorda

They say you should never judge a book by its cover and never has that phrase been so applicable. This traditional bread and soup dish may not look much but it tastes absolutely delicious. Again there are variations on this dish (notably the Açorda Alentejana version) but the idea is that shrimps, bread, eggs, olive oil, garlic and coriander are all mashed up together. Honestly, this one’s a winner.

Eating in Portugal 2

Bacalhau (Francisco Antunes/Flickr Creative Commons license)

 

Bacalhau

This traditional dish is a throwback to the era of Portugal’s sea voyages and its maritime history. It’s basically dried salt-cod served with whatever vegetables are lying around (usually onions, peppers and olives). Back in the good old days, sailors would preserve cod in salt for long voyages and a fondness for salty cod seems to have prevailed throughout the ages.

Caldo Verde

This green soup could almost be called Portugal’s national dish. It’s a broth of cabbage, onions and potatoes — sometimes served with local sausage. You’ll find this served all over the country — even, somewhat bizarrely, in nightclubs as an accompaniment to traditional Portuguese Fado music.

Portuguese food is tremendously tasty. Now all you need to find out is the Portuguese for “Bon Appetit” and impress the locals while you explore the country and the cuisine on your Portugal holidays.

Written by Sarah Thompson

Home / Travel Talk / Discover Jamaica beyond the beach

Discover Jamaica beyond the beach

Updated: March 24, 2016
By: Borderless Travels Team
Jamaican Beach

Jamaican Beach

Close your eyes. Listen. Breathe.  Be present as you inhale the aromatic and intoxicating rainforest air, feel it’s presence around your body, know that you are in the here and now.  Far from the exhilarating sensations and frenzy of Kingston, you are now walking in the footsteps of the Tainos and Maroons, Jamaica’s former enslaved people. High in the mountains you explore their network of trails, settlement and hiding places along the Nanny Town Heritage Route located in Jamaica’s rugged forest mountain region.  Feel the spiritual connection to the mountains as you listen to its wildlife and observe the rainforest’s rich biodiversity.  This is Jamaica.

For many, Jamaica is more synonymous with beaches, reggae, and herbal remedies.  Yet, for those who can take the time to really explore one of the most visited Caribbean islands, Jamaica offers some unrivaled experiences.

With millions of visitors each year there is no shortage of places to stay, and a quick internet search will yield everything from all-inclusive resorts and backpacker lounges to apartments and houses for rent in Jamaica an easy way for anyone to customize a Jamaican trip.

Of course, once you’ve found where you’re staying you’ll want start exploring so that when you go home you’ll understand why Jamaica is a place that boasts, “once you go you know”.  With this quick guide you’ll discover the highlights beyond Jamaica’s spectacular beaches.

Connect with Nature in Jamaica’s Blue and John Crow Mountain Ranges

The only UNESCO world heritage site in Jamaica is a National Park that is designated as being one of the world’s most irreplaceable protected areas for its biodiversity.  Blue Mountain and John Crow Mountains are also significant because of the cultural heritage that they preserve.  Most of this history is important to the countries heritage route because it recognizes the traditions and fight of the Maroon people of Jamaica, who used the mountains for refuge from its colonizers.  When you visit you’ll get to explore the natural wonders of Jamaica as well as its most important cultural heritage.

Visit Bob Marley & pay homage to Jamaica’s most Iconic Musician

A trip to Jamaica would not be complete without a visit to the early home and resting place of musical legend Bob Marley.  Winding along the dry rural roads of St. Anne as the contrasting green jungle wisps by outside your window is Nine Mile, where the mausoleum of Bob Marley sits among the dusty streets of his village just over an hour drive from the Jamaican capital.  If you’re a Bob Marley fan, want to learn about the cultural heritage of a musical great, or feel like chatting it up with a Rastafarian guide then this is a must for anyone visiting this region.

Explore Jamaica’s Waterfalls

If you’re off to see Bob Marley, then you’ll want to make the jaunt over to Dunn’s River Falls so make sure you bring your microfiber beach towel.  The 600 ft waterfall of chiseled steps is a natural landmark is worth exploring, and a great way to cool down after adventuring across the Jamaican countryside.  While you’re there, don’t forget to spend some time in its natural Jacuzzi’s.  It’s only a short drive from Nine Mile and after your visit you can check out Usain Bolt’s Tracks & Records restaurant.

Jamaican Bobsledding at Mystic Mountain

Rain Forest Bobsled Jamaica sounds about as likely as reliving the classic 90’s throwback film Cool Runnings, but it’s close enough.  High in the treetops of Ocho Rios you can you can relive the adventures of Sanka, Derice, Junior, and Yul, enjoy a great view from their sky explorer chairlift, cool off on the water slide and push your comfort zone on a canopy zipline.  It’s just fun for a silly day with a loved one or the whole family.

These few highlights will take you beyond the classic tourist eats, drinks, and beaches that you’re sure to enjoy on your visit to Jamaica.  In the end, you will want to be able to say that you paid homage to musical great Bob Marley, connected with nature in Blue and John Crow mountains (Jamaica’s National Park and a recognized UNESCO world heritage site), checked out Jamaica’s most famous waterfall, tried bobsledding, and then sat beachside with a cocktail in hand and enjoyed the sounds of the sea.

Before you go, don’t forget to be prepared before you go and like every good adventure The Gear Hunt will help you find the perfect footwear.

Home / Travel Talk / Outdoor Recreation & Weather Data: Protect Your Patrons & Employees

Outdoor Recreation & Weather Data: Protect Your Patrons & Employees

Updated: March 4, 2016
By: Borderless Travels Team
Canadian Winter

Beautiful pic of Canadian winter on the way to Ottawa from Toronto

Earth Networks has your business’ back when it comes to severe weather forecasts. With two decades of experience, the company boasts the world’s only collection of environmental networks that monitor lightning, greenhouse gas, and weather across six continents.

Keeping Your Facility, Workers, and Patrons Protected

Outdoor safety is so important to facilities managers. Earth Networks understands this and provides an extensive host of severe weather intelligence products and services to ensure that your resort, park, country club, or other facility always operates smoothly, even during inclement weather. Some of the ways Earth Networks helps is to:

  • Protect and inform your employees and patrons about severe weather alerts
  • Automatically clear outdoor areas when lightning approaches
  • Monitor environmental factors that can impact grounds keeping activities

Earth Networks Has Your Business’ Back

Earth Networks’ Outdoor Alerting System services outdoor facilities all over the world, offering them mitigated risks, standardized alerts, and help managing their outdoor activities. It is especially useful for those areas that are prone to severe weather as it includes a lightning monitoring system.

With more than 12,000 hyper-local weather stations all over the globe, Earth Networks’ products and services track and analyze more than 25 key atmospheric conditions. You can plan and know what is coming so you can keep your facility safe from the impacts of severe weather.

Earth Networks’ expert meteorologists are on call around the clock to provide breaking details on changing weather patterns to keep you in the know.

The outdoor safety services include outdoor alerting systems, weather station sensors, meteorological services, and SFERIC maps, which offer collaborative web-based weather visualization and alerting tools right on your smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Trust in Earth Networks to keep your facility safe and up and running, even during the worst weather conditions.

Thank you to Earth Networks for working with Borderless Travels to promote their services

Home / Travel Talk / Algarve| Discover Portuguese treasures fit for 2017

Algarve| Discover Portuguese treasures fit for 2017

Updated: December 18, 2015
By: Borderless Travels Team
Image by melenama, used under Creative Commons License (CC BY 2.0)

Image by melenama, used under Creative Commons License (CC BY 2.0)

The sight of the morning sun reflecting off opalescent ocean waves is second to none. Add the dreamy Algarve coast and its soothing lagoons to the equation, and you’re looking at an unbeatable setting for your morning coffee.

Take the Ria Formosa Natural Park, recently voted one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Portugal. The park spans a massive 60 kilometers across the coast, and is cut off from the sea by five barrier islands and two peninsulas. A must for wildlife lovers, kick back and watch flamboyant flamingos and exotic birds like the Purple Swamphen strut their feathers across the pristine shores.  Before you go you need to make sure you have  good shoes and Nicer Shoes will definitely help.

Swimming with the fish

Speaking of wildlife, no trip to Algarve is complete without snorkeling in the coral-filed waters indigenous to the region. After acquainting yourself with the local fish, you’re greeted by a wall of sun-tinted orange limestone cliffs – a trademark feature of the Algarve coast.

Do you ever find yourself longingly gazing into the horizon? If so, I’d recommend the Cape St. Vincent. Portugal’s most southwestern point, this is where the Atlantic meets Europe. Here, you can share the same views as the historic Portuguese sailors who first conquered its notorious depths.

Image by Jose A. used Creative Commons License (CC BY 2.0)

Image by Jose A. used Creative Commons License (CC BY 2.0)

Local heritage 

After all this, you’ll have saved a little extra dough to splash on beaches, bars, castles and other activities you can try in the Algarve. Visiting the quaint old town of Tavira, you’ll see a selection of multi-colored buildings as you feast on some delicious local mussels.

For your culture fix, visit the Núcleo Islâmico – a museum displaying various Islamic artifacts found throughout city. Tavira was under Arab occupation from the 8th to the 13th century, and the museum provides a fascinating insight to the era.

Nightlife in Algarve

On top of postcard views and a captivating history, Algarve boasts a thriving nightlife which attracts tourists from all around the world. Walking down Rua 25 de Abril – the main strip –  you’re met with lively bars to your right and the sound of waves crashing on your left. The most enthusiastic revellers will make their way down to the beach, where the younger crowd keep it rockin’ ’till the sun comes up on the Atlantic.

There’s no shortage of things to do in the Algarve. Whether for its enticing scenery or vibrant culture, make sure it’s one of your places to visit in 2017.

Home / Travel Talk / How to save money on a once-in-a-lifetime experience

How to save money on a once-in-a-lifetime experience

Updated: November 29, 2015
By: Borderless Travels Team
Roadtrip Finland

Road trip to Rovaniemi, Finland with the Shameless Traveler!

So, you’ve decided to bite the bullet and finally do what so many people would love to – travel the world. Without a doubt, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. There’s no surprise why it can cost a fortune then. But there are ways to save money on such a trip. Here are five of the best:

1. Prioritise

There’s a tough reality you must face before travelling – you won’t be able to see everything. So decide early what are your must-sees, and what you’ll be willing to miss. That way, you can spend your money on what matters to you.

2. Book ahead

Plans change and having a flexible attitude ensures you make the most of your trip. But where possible, don’t leave booking until the last minute. Get those major flights booked and have an idea how much you should be paying for accommodation.

It might be tempting to hedge your bets and hope for a late deal, but it’s better to keep your eye out for sales, take advantage of early-bird specials and shop around

3. Fly when others don’t want to

A large chunk of your budget will go on flights, so it makes sense to try and save money here. You’ve got to be willing to compromise though. Get up early or stay up late for the cheapest flights. Not everyone is willing to travel at odd times, meaning you can save money by doing so.

You could try travelling overnight on long flights or sleeper trains. It’s one less night’s accommodation to splash out on.

4. Make the most of the sharing economy

The sharing economy has made it easier for travellers and locals to connect with each other. Now that people can advertise and promote their local services and knowledge, you have access to opportunities that save a lot of money. It’s also give your travel experience a unique spin. Examples you could try include Coachsurfing, Eat With A Local, Airbnb and Camp in My Garden. Oh yeah, and don’t forget to let Gear We Are help you find the perfect sleeping bag for your adventure.

5. Play hardball

Knowing when to haggle can save you loads of money. Hotels are a great place to start – email in advance and ask about discount rates, offer to pay cash for a discount or ask about upgrades to a better room.

With a bit of practice, you’ll be a master at negotiating in no time. Just remember, you’ll have more luck doing it in low season.

How do you save money for travelling? Let us know.

Sources:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/advice/Budget-travel-50-ways-to-save-money-on-your-holiday/
https://www.1cover.com.au/secret-traveller/paying-less/
http://www.nomadicmatt.com/save-money-on-road/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jinna-yang/5-tips-to-help-you-save-m_b_6549566.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Thanks to writer Blake Miller for supporting Borderless Travels through this article.

 

 

 

Home / Travel Talk / Top 5 Best Vacations a Surfer Can Take

Top 5 Best Vacations a Surfer Can Take

Updated: November 22, 2015
By: Borderless Travels Team
Surfing the reef in Batukaras, Indonesia

Surfing the reef in Java, Indonesia

If you fall asleep each night and wake each morning with the passion to be out surfing, then you are in luck. The next time you go to plan a vacation, there are some spots that you can go to that will offer you a surfing holiday like nowhere else. Here are five of the best vacation spots to go for surfers.

Make These Surfing Destinations Part of Your Vacation Plans

 1. Tullan Strand – Bundoran, Ireland

Considered a great surfing destination. Famed big-wave surfing pro Richie Fitzgerald owns a shop here and runs it with his family, giving you a unique vacation to remember.

2. Mal Pais, Costa Rica

Another great surfing destination located in sunny Central America. If your tropical vacation takes you down this way, you will be sure to love the waves and the nearby attractions.  A hidden gem that used to be off the tourist track and is starting to pick up.  After a few hours bus ride from the capital city of San Juan you’ll be ready for a great surf adventure!

3. Cox Bay – Vancouver Island, Canada

If you like to surf year-round, then Cox Bay in Vancouver Island, Canada is your destination. Surfing doesn’t have to stop simply because it’s winter, you just need to be prepared with the right type of equipment.

4. Big Bay beach – Cape Town, South Africa

A great place to go for the surfing enthusiast. There are even schools around that can help you perfect your surfing skills, that will pick you up from your hotel and bring you to whatever beach has the best surfing that particular day.

5. West Java – Java, Indonesia

Don’t forget your passport for this visceral experience in the warm waters of Indonesia.  There are so many different places to visit for surf lovers that we couldn’t pick just one.  For a perfect vacation pick a starting point then just figure out stops along the coast.

Bring a surfing and weather app with you on all of these trips so you know what type of waves to expect. An accurate weather app, like Weather Bug, can help you go out and enjoy the waves at their peaks. Plus, if you have a traveling and weather app on you, then you know if bad weather is coming so you can plan an alternative activity that day!

Thanks to writer Samantha and Weatherbug for supporting Borderless Travels though this post

Home / Travel Talk / Preparing yourself for a new motorcycle Adventure

Preparing yourself for a new motorcycle Adventure

Updated: October 26, 2014
By: Borderless Travels Team
Yorkshire Dales by Dave_S. Creative Commons License Flickr

Yorkshire Dales by Dave_S. Creative Commons License Flickr

Changing up your travel routine is the best way to constantly discover new experiences and adventure. Traveling by motorcycle is one way to optimize that adventure. If that’s an option that you’ve been considering, then there are a few things to know about to be prepared for the journey. Making sure your bike runs smoothly is key to being able to enjoy the open road. Even with the top bike parts out there, you need to ensure that you’re selecting the right ones for your specific bike and for the type of journey you’re getting prepared for. The best way to ensure that you don’t end up on the side of the road waiting for a hand is to do your research. Having the proper bike parts for your bike, and spares for that matter, are going to be the best thing you can do to make sure your road trip goes smoothly. Online Motorcycle part retailers can deliver the best top of the line bike parts to your front door all before you leave your home.

With so many options on the web, you may find yourself in a bottomless pit of the internet with an overwhelming amount of options. Luckily, we’ve done most of the research for you, and discovered Bike Bandit. This is your one stop shop for not only motorcycle parts, but gear, apparel, accessories, tires and many other motorcycle and dirt bike necessities as well. If you’re an experienced biker, you may even want to upgrade or replace some of your motorcycle parts before hitting the road, which can be found online as well.

If you’ve never traveled long distance by motorcycle before, there are going to be many things to be prepared for that you may not have considered. Even finding the right luggage to attach to your bike is something you might not have thought about. Finding high quality products and apparel are essential for long distance rides. Having an emergency on the side of the read often means spending a lot more out of pocket to replace parts with minimal options when you’re stranded. Although there are a lot of factors to consider to be prepared for a long distance ride, a motorcycle can be a new an exhilarating way to experience the journey to your next destination.

Thanks to Jeremy Brumsfeld for this post.