Bora Bora is only the most stunning island in the South Pacific. The three main villages on this sparsely populated island are Vaitape, Anau and Faanui. Fantastic snorkeling opportunities in the sprawling clean lagoon and around the barrier reef. The Bora Bora Lagoon is an attraction on it’s own. With stunning blue green water, clean white sand beaches and colorful coral. Perfect conditions for snorkeling include warm water, coral reefs and a tremendous variety of fish and sea life. A recommended activity is to take a guided snorkeling tour. For the more adventurous traveler a must do when visiting Bora Bora is a swim with the black tip sharks or sting rays. You can still enjoy the beauty of Bora Bora underwater sea life by taking a tour on a glass bottom boat. Often your guide will feed the fish attracting an array of colorful fish close up to the glass bottom of the boat. Excellent photo opportunities through the cleat glass and often your guide will identify the different species for you. While the glass bottom boats have over head cover it is still recommended to wear sun periodontal like sunscreen. The suns burning rays get reflected off the water surface and I have been on many tours where passengers have been badly burnt. Don’t get misled into believing that Bora Bora is only about the water and sea life. The island’s highest point is Mount Otemanu. An impressive sight as the old volcano mountain towers 2400 feet above the crystal clear waters of Bora Bora.
Stop in to Bloody Mary’s for a drink. This renound pub has almost become a must do in Bora Bora. With a beach decor, a sand floor, it has a great atmosphere. Spend a few minutes browsing through the famous names on the board of post patrons to Bloody Mary’s. One of the best ways to truthfully appreciate the tropical setting is to take a 4wd tour on Bora Bora. Usually your tour will take you to some of the best vantage points to view this incredible island. See the locals in their villages and learn about the pearl farm industry. Take the opportunity to get involved in an aqua helmet dive. Not a fine at all but a pleasant walk under the water to observe the marine life up close. Often snorkelers have difficulty seeing the fish as they are unable to wear their collective glasses. Well here is the answer. An aqua helmet is pumped with fresh air and your face and head never get wet. You are then able to wear your glasses and regularly enjoy the adventure that awaits at the bottom of the sea bed. A jet boat ride is always a fun and exciting thing to do. While visiting Bora Bora you have the perfect opportunity to take a jet boat ride some go completely around the island.
A visit to Crater Lake is a must for any traveler to South East Oregon. Create Lake is well positioned between a few major towns. To make a few you could stay in Bend OR, Roseburg OR, Medford OR or Prospect OR. Crater Lake is a fantastic example of a caldera. A caldera is formed when a volcano collapsed into itself and leaves a huge vacant hole in the top of the mountain. The Crater Lake is about 2000 feet deep. The lake was formed when this crater filled with rain water and melted snow. Take a Crater Lake or drive the 33 miles around the rim to fully enjoy this magnificent natural wonder.
Cottage Grove Oregaon is the coveted bridge capital of the West. Here you are lucky to see the only remaining covered railway bridge west of the Mississippi. Fully restored the Chambers Covered Railroad Bridge is now on the National Register of Historic Places. A short 20 mile drive and you will see 6 out of the 20 remaining covered bridges. A popular way to experience the covered bridges is on a bike. The scenic bikeway of covered bridges is 36 miles of beautiful scenery. Cottage Grove OR is a charming city. Now we’ll known for it’s vibrant murals. The main street of Cottage Grove OR is a charming country style street with restaurants and shopping. Take time to visit the Bohemian Guild Mining Museum and the Oregon Aviation Historical Society and Museum.
When visiting Custer SD or Hill City SD one of the most do things to see is the Crazy Horse Memorial. A work still in progress but when finished it will be the largest mountain carving in the world. The Crazy Horse face will measure 87.5 feet high compare to the Mount Rushmore faces at 60 feet. Located only 17 miles from Mount Rushmore National Memorial gives you a perfect opportunity to view both great sculptures on the same trip to South Dakota. Today sculptures are completing the vision of Korczak Ziolkowski which was started in 1948. How did the Crazy Horse Memorial come about? It was a request from Chief Henry Standing Bear to show that the Native Indians also had great heroes.
A commonly asked question is who are the Presidents on Mount Rushmore? George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln Lincoln the four presidents chosen to represent freedom and democracy in America. To see these impressive 60 feet granite sculptures find accomodation in on of these three nearby cities. Keystone SD, Hill City SD, or Custer SD. I found it quite amusing to see groups of people sitting in front of the Mount Rushmore Memorial and eating icecream. When the story was told to me it made a lot of sense. The icecream on sale has been taken from the very first icecream receipe brought into America by Thomas Jefferson in 1780.
Yellowstone Park Stop off at Mammoth Hot Springs to see the Travertine Terraces. Created with water and limestone a must stop when you are visiting Yellowstone Park. What are Fumaroles? Fumaroles are the hottest hydrathermal active sites in Yellowstone Park. Because of this heat they do not spay up water like geysers but shoot up steam. You can hear the fumaroles his and whistle as the stream tries to escape through a restricted passage to the surface. What are the mudpots in Yellowstone Park? The best actress to see mudpots in Yellowstone Park are: Artists’ Paintpots, Norris Geyser Basin, Fountain Paint Pots, West Thumb Geyser Basin and Mud Volcano. Mudpots are acidic hot springs. They differ from hotsprings due to the fact they have a limited water supply. With the water levels being low, acid decomposes the rock around and forms mud and clay.
Pinedale Wyoming If you saw the film The Revenant you may love to see the Grizzlies beat attack in The Museum of the Mountain Man. An excellent museum focusing on the fur trade era. Learn some of the stories of Jim Bridger, Kit Carson and Jed Smith to name a few. Rent a boat in the glacier lake Fremont in the Bridger-Teton National Park.
Evanston Wyoming In Evanston you will find the only remaining complete roundhouse on the old Union Pacific Line between Sacramento and Omaha. Step back in time and see the old railway turntables. The historic building was used to service the locomotives. This 1868 railway town is today an active destination for bikers, hikers, wildlife viewing and fishing. Just outside Evanston is the Bear River State Park. The park is only for day use so we recommend you book accommodation in Evanston. Great bike and hiking trails for the more energetic. Evanston WY is the gateway to the Unita Mountain range.
Cody Wyoming In the heart of downtown Cody is the historic Buffalo Bills Irma Hotel. Built in 1902 by Buffalo Bill Cody. Take this opportunity to dine in the historic rooms and have a drink in the old saloon.
Afton Wyoming When visiting Afton WY have a look for the world’s largest elk antler arch. Started in 1958 but added to by the locals today it is believed the are more than 3000 anglers in this rather unusual construction. My first thought was that that is a lot of elk that have been killed and their antlers collected. Not true, did you know that elk shed their antlers every year.
Rock Springs Wyoming Rock Springs growth was originally from the coal mining industry. Coal was used to power the Union Pacific Railway. Diesel took over in the mid 1900’s and many from the coal mining industry left the city. Today Rock Springs has a thriving oil and gas industry. There is also trona mining. What is a trona mine? A trona mine is a mine which is a bit like an underground city. A series of rooms are connected with channels. They’re are roads, washrooms, maintenance stations and electricity lines. Rock Springs Historical Museum Now situated in the old City Hall the Rock Springs Historical Museum is open everyday with the exception of Sundays. Entrance is free to explore some old artifacts from Rock Springs Wyoming. Rock Springs WY gives you the opportunity to have a glimpse at an ancient era of Southwest Wyoming. Learn about the earliest human inhabitants that lived here. See replicas of dinosaurs, fossils, stones and pottery. About 26 miles from Rock Springs you will find The White Mountain Petroglyphs. Dating back to as far as a 1000 years ago marvel at the etchings in the stone. From Rock Springs you can drive the Pilot Butte Wild Horse Scenic Loop. You are not guaranteed to see wild horses but it is still a lovely scenic route. The drive is approximately 25 miles long.
Amish Where do the Amish people live? If you wanted to visit the Amish people the greatest concentration in the United States of America is just south of Cleveland Ohio. Holmes County and surrounding areas have a high concentration of this religious group. That being said, Amish people can be found in nearly every state in the USA and also Canada and Central America. It is believed that the population of Amish in Ohio comes in second to the state of Pennsylvania. Lancaster County is a perfect place to visit if you are interested in seeing the Amish community at work. A common missbelief is that the Amish live in one big community altogether. They can be found farming and working all over America. They shop in local non Amish stores and sell their produce at the local markets.
Is the Amish religion going to die out? It would appear not. In recent years the Amish population in the United States of America has grown at a rate about five times faster than other Americans. This could be due to the lower mortality rate of children compared to the past and that they still have an average of six to seven children. Are the Amish baptized? Yes baptism is a big part of their religion. Baptism usually takes place around the age of sixteen. Once baptized they join the church and if they marry it must be within the faith. The interesting fact is that about 90 percent of the youngsters are baptized. What language is spoken by the Amish? At school the Amish are taught to speak English. In their churches and homes they speak a dialect of the German language.
Do the Amish do military service. No they do not participate in acts of aggression due to their non resistant beliefs. Do the Amish draw from social security? Generally speaking the Amish do not participate in the USA social security system and few are believed to buy commercial insurance. Do the Amish children go to school? With a strong belief in family values the parents play an important part in their children’s education. That being said they go to their own schools up to the age of about thirteen. Higher education is discouraged as it may break up the community. Some women within the faith have qualified as nurses to look after the community. Why do the Amish dress the way they do? The Amish style of clothing is not a costume but a reflection of their faith. They strongly believe in humility and their dress code is proudly worn to distinguish them from others outside the faith. The Amish want to love separately from the rest of the world. They chose not to have modern conveniences like electricity. The thought being that it would open them up to outside influences like radio and television. Do the Amish men grow moustaches? I noticed that some of the Amish men have beards but I never saw any men with mustaches. It is thought that a mustache he’s traditionally been associated with the military and is therefore banned in the Amish community. The men are allowed to grow their beards after they get married. In fact they do not shave their beards. How do the Amish people feel about tourists? Tourism into the Amish country areas has grown. Whilst the Amish do not like it, many have grown to accept the inquisitive visitors. When in the area remember to treat them with respect. They are just like you and I but with strong religous beliefs. Unlike many tourist destinations this is not a reenactment of a time in the past, a living museum. This is their life how they have chosen to live. Treat them with the dignity they deserve. Support their industries and shops.
The Amish are a group of traditionalist Christian church fellowships with Swiss German Anabaptist origins. They are closely related to, but distinct from, Mennonite churches. The Amish are known for simple living, plain dress, and reluctance to adopt many conveniences of modern technology.
The Dalles Oregan The Dalles is on the banks of the Columbia River less than 85 miles east of Portland Oregan. A charming town and very popular tourist spot for both Oregan folks and beyond. Known as the cherry capital of the world it also produces some award winning wines. The Dalles location on the Columbia River and in the shadow of Mount Hood along with over 300 days of sunshine makes it very obvious why people visit here. It serves as the eastern gateway to the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. As mentioned earlier The Dalles is home to some very good award winning wines. Take a wine tour and experience some of this high quality wine. There is something for everyone to do. Fishing, biking, hiking and river rafting will keep the more energetic people satisfied. Less than an hour away is the impressive Mt. Hood (11 250ft). An ideal setting for skiers, hikers and mountain climbers. The city is rich in history being one of the oldest communities in North America. Described as the end of the Origan Trail where the pioneers used to load their wagons into rafts and barges and float down the Columbia River heading for Origan City. The Dalles History. The Dalles is one of the oldest inhabited places in North America. Today the city services over 87 000 residents in the Wasco, Sherman, Gilliam, Wheeler and Hood River Counties. Originally The Dalles was a trading post for the Native American Tribes.
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No trip to Washington DC is complete without a visit to the White House. If you are lucky enough to get an inside tour that would be first prize. I think you would have to book ahead up to the month’s in advance. We were not so lucky but still enjoyed the view from the outside. Make sure you pop into the White House visitors centre. There you can watch a video of the white house and it is narrated by past president’s and their wives and families.
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