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Sports And Adventure
In Colombia, the Andes Mountains just north of Medellin rise to create the perfect conditions for growing some of the world’s best coffee. How good is that java, exactly? So good that UNESCO inscribed an enormous coffee growing area in the region as the Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia in 2011.
So it’s no surprise that, today, Colombia’s coffee country is a well-known tourist destination for travelers attracted to sweeping landscapes and the opportunity to learn more about the production of coffee. And until recently, hotel options — though plentiful in number — were quite limited in diversity. They’ve fallen in two general categories: brightly painted traditional wood farmhouses that happily benefit from the addition of plumbing and electricity, or feeble attempts at three- and four-star hotels that appeal primarily to Colombian families.
That all changed on December 22 of 2014, when the intimate Hacienda Buenavista opened its doors.
We’ve all been there: feeling like you need a vacation from your vacation. This can be especially true when you’re faced with days the crowds, the frenetic pace, and the barrage of merchandising in Orlando’s theme parks. Luckily, a natural escape awaits just outside of the popular sunny city, packed with both real-life thrills as well as peaceful solitude to recharge and relax.
Kissimmee showcases everything there is to love about Florida’s natural wonders and temperate climate. And, just a half hour from the magical worlds of Disney and Universal, its convenient location make it an easy, quick escape. Whether for a mid-afternoon break, or a day or two of rejuvenation before heading home, these adventures show off a different side of central Florida.
Hop into your car and head to one of the country’s five most scenic bridges, each a crown jewel of American architecture. These bridges demonstrate imaginative uses of engineering — overcoming nature’s road-blocks with arches and suspensions that go beyond getting you from point A to point B.
As winter maintains an icy grip on the East Coast for a few more weeks, we like the idea of following the birds south to sunny Sanibel. Just off the coast of Fort Myers in Florida, Sanibel has seen a resurgence in national and international tourism in recent years, thanks to its year-round sun and white, sandy Gulf beaches. It’s a quieter, more relaxing, and very affordable scene here compared to the hubbub along the state’s eastern coast — ideal for those seeking to stay active but low-key, all the while enjoying fine dining and great shopping. Here’s how to make the most of the area’s expansive nature and golden warmth.
An Alaska cruise is a bucket-list trip for travelers who love the great outdoors. Cruise ships typically sail weeklong northbound and southbound trips, often between Seattle or Vancouver and Anchorage. Expect to find unbelievable scenery along the way, at points such as Tracy Arm Fjord and Glacier Bay, not to mention deliciously fresh seafood. It’s the voyage of a lifetime — and you’ll want to make sure your experience is the best that it can be. Here’s how to do just that:
By Annemarie Dooling for Yahoo! Travel
Even though you don’t need a passport to visit and the U.S. dollar is the official currency, Puerto Rico feels like another world — the ultimate beach getaway destination. Instead of just flying in for a quick weekend, here’s how to spend the best week of your life in Puerto Rico.
For the ultimate winter adventure, take to the backwoods on a sled, driven by your very own team of Alaskan Huskies. Best suited for the physically active, these top five dogsledding trips guarantee thrills over frozen lakes, deeply wooded trails, and endless horizons of snow and sky. Read more
Big Cedar Lodge is situated in the Ozark Mountains — Ridgedale, Missouri, to be precise. The area is a nature lover’s paradise, replete with swaths of dense forest, overlooking 43,000-acres of Table Rock Lake’s blue-green waters. It’s is billed as “a wilderness resort,” founded by Johnny Morris, the owner of Bass Pro Shops. It makes perfect sense that this would be a haven for the outdoor aficionados. We checked in at Big Cedar Lodge, and here’s what we loved most. Read more
Beaches, snorkeling, and maybe some hiking — that’s typically what you’d expect from a Caribbean vacation. That’s why we were surprised to find ourselves on a “safari” jeep tour on a recent trip to Curacao. The Curacao Ostrich Farm, it turns out, is home to one of the largest populations of ostriches outside of Africa. It’s impressive to see how creatively and efficiently the farm operates; the on-site restaurant serves prime cuts while the rest of the animal is used to feed other livestock. Eggshells and even bones are used to make art. The tour explains all of this, and gives guests a thorough introduction to the animals themselves, from birth through adulthood. The video above shows some of what we learned: When you see this fight dance, prepare to run — it’s a warning sign for a potential attack, and ostriches are strong enough to break bones.
If you’ve never been to Peninsula Papagayo on the north Pacific coast of Costa Rica, here’s the first thing you need to know: it’s isolated. Very isolated. Now, depending on what type of traveler you are, that might sound incredibly alluring — but just keep in mind that the nearest “town,” and the airport, is around 45 minutes away.
There’s no skiing required to enjoy the ascents of these five picturesque gondola tours. You’ll reach new heights and be rewarded with sky top restaurants, nature exhibits, and hiking trails. Don’t forget the camera!
Let the adrenaline kick in as you zoom at speeds up to 30 miles per hour, just inches from the ground, and down the mountainside. Tubing has become a winter phenomenon in its own right, with resorts dedicating ample mountainside real estate to the pastime. From 1,000-foot-long runs to a custom-built snow tube jump, air time is practically guaranteed at these five thrilling snow tubing spots.
Polo is considered the sport of kings, but that doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t indulge in this spectacle steeped in tradition at everyday prices. One of the oldest team sports in history — and one of the most dangerous in the world — polo combines the skillful mastery of eight horses galloping down the field at 30 miles per hour, along with an excuse to drink copious amounts of champagne and wear frilly hats.
It’s only two weeks into the new year and there’s already exciting news for one of our Top Budget Destinations of 2015. That destination is Reno, with its close proximity to world-class ski resorts, 300 days of sunshine, and a booming downtown that’s about to get trendier thanks to the presence of big companies like Tesla. Then just today, we learned that JetBlue will be launching daily nonstop service between Reno/Tahoe and New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport daily, starting May 28.
Good news for ski lovers: For the first time in 25 years, Park City, UT is a viable option for a last-minute long weekend trip over the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday (coming up this Monday). That’s because this year, for once, the holiday doesn’t coincide with the star-studded Sundance Film Festival — when rooms get sold out months in advance. To celebrate, many Park City hotels have unleashed a batch of deals to entice travelers to hit the slopes (and the 100 restaurants and lounges along Historic Main Street après-ski).
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