Climbing Gunung Merapi, Southeast Asia’s most active volcano

Every now and then life pulls the rug from under your feet and leaves you lying on your back – this sibling-esque prank is often referred to as a ‘reality check’. Dangling off the side of Merapi with one hand on a fern root and the other on the arm of Khalid was my mine. I had taken too lightly to climbing the most active volcano in Southeast Asia, and when the path I was walking on suddenly gave way, it turned out to be a mentally draining, yet emotionally rewarding challenge.

87

Known to locals as Fire Mountain, Gunung Merapi sits on the border between Central Java and Yogyakarta in Indonesia. There have been regular eruptions since 1548, with the most recent in 2010 where 30 people died.

Our walk was to start at 4:30am, under night at Desa Deles, the ranger’s hut at 1,300 metres. By 10am that day I’d be up 2,930 metres high on the summit of Merapi.

The smell of sulfur was in the air, and our torches pierced

Kamloops, Shuswap and the North Okanagan, British Columbia, Canada

Just a short 45 minute flight from Vancouver, Kamloops lies at the confluence of two branches of the Thompson River. Important during the gold rush of the 1860’s, it was the Canadian Pacific Railway which finally put in on the map when it arrived in 1883.

86

It enjoys more than 2,000 hours of sunshine annually and with 100 freshwater lakes within an hour’s drive of the city, tourism is becoming increasingly popular.

Indeed, the sun is shining when I arrive in early October and check in to the Hotel 540 downtown. That’s good news as I’m here for outdoor activities and next day the weather is holding as I set out to Harper Mountain, around half an hour out of town.

We climb up through the forest and meet our guide, Monique Vek, in a clearing where she has our mountain bikes ready to go.

Monique has qualifications as a bronco rider and only exchanged her mount for the two wheeled variety a few years ago. It was not without mishaps as she’s broken her

St Pancras – A Destination In Its own Right

St Pancras International is not just a railway station, it is a permanent home for the high-speed terminus to Ashford thanks to Southeastern, the Continent thanks to Eurostar, and with its accompanying five star Renaissance Hotel, it may well be the grandest railway station in the world.

85

Dressed in towering and exuberant Victorian red-brick and coloured stone, this dazzling piece of Gothic architecture looks reminiscent of a Cathedral with its clock tower and spiralling turrets.

Its sprawling interior is a hub for transport both overground and underground, but it is also a hub for humanity: around 48 million travellers and visitors per year set off or stay put to enjoy the retail, dining and cultural opportunities.

Originally built as the Midland railway in 1863 it housed Sir William Barlow’s train shed which looked awesome with high arches made of iron and glass and was one of the great engineering feats of the Victorian age. By 1873 the accompanying hotel Midland Grand Hotel was completed.

Once earmarked for demolition, it was restored instead

It’s a super fun place on a trip to Key West.

Key West is the southernmost city in the United States and is only 4 hours from Miami driving on the scenic route abroad with many interesting (and kitsch) things, 110 miles to travel 42 including crossing several bridges. No visit to South Florida is complete without the Republic of the shell for a few days causing road. Especially if you like pirates, Key Lime Pie, water sports and live music! The best way to discover the scenic Florida Keys is behind the wheel of a convertible, Miami to Key West miles  and joy rented Jeep Wrangler with tons of Fun Tours. You do it simply, the handover at the airport or at your hotel in Miami. Once you have it, just give the tip, remove clothing, to increase the volume, and enjoy the ride!

Just go to Marathon under the hot sun for photos to stop and original souvenirs like shark was stuffed mascot for the rest of trip. Dangling arm in the water, a huge sea creature suddenly jumped and it wraps around the hand to mouth horror of cheering spectators. Growing up to 8 meters long and weigh more than 200 pounds, they are

The Virtues Of Umrah

Allah says: And complete the Hajj and Umrah in the administration of Allah.

Nabi (saw) has expressed in a hadith: ‘The execution of Hajj and Umrah build an individual’s life compass and annihilates neediness and sins pretty much as rust is expelled from the iron when set in the heater.’

For this extremely same reason Imam A Nawawi (rah) has composed that if Allah stipends the capacity and direction to a hireling of His, it is Mustahab (favored) to perform Umrah oftentimes.

Hazrat Amar ibn Abassa relates: ‘Rasulullah (saw) expressed that the best of deeds is the execution of Hajj or Umrah.’ It is likewise related in a hadith: ‘Umrah is the lesser Haj.’

Abu Hurairah relates that Rasulullah (saw) expressed: ‘One Umrah is reparation for the wrongdoings submitted in the middle of that and the past Umrah’

Implying that the execution of one Umrah is the method for pardoning the wrongdoings and shortcomings that may have been submitted by a single person between that Umrah and the past one.

Allah has decided for his workers the way that Hajj must be performed at its predefined time, in the specific days of Dhil Hijjah. It is unrealistic for one to perform the rituals of Hajj outside

Why People Are In Search Of Cheap Umrah Packages

Many people are look for of receiving some cheap package forms any travel agency. So they can Offer Umrah at a very cheap rate. As each, person is not the same in the sense of their assets. Some are rich, some are quite rich, some are just in the middle or some are really very poor, but they want to do Umrah. Many poor people wish to do or perform Hajj and Umrah, but they can’t due to less expense. So Al Hijaz is a medium that gives those people a calm and cheap package, so these people too, able to achieve this landmark.

So, Al Hijaz put their eyes on these people and after it, this agency have resolute to give some cheap package to these people, so that these people can also perform Hajj and Umrah also. Yes, this agency is effective for the people who are looking for of cheap Umrah packages 2015 and Cheap Umrah Packages London Services. Umrah is not compulsory in Islam, but it is really recommended. People who have solid believe in Allah, and wish to go to the Holy Kaaba and do Umrah or Hajj. Their problems are now

Stargazing On A Cyclades Islands Private Yacht Cruise

There’s nothing quite like a stargazing experience. It’s something that pretty much anyone can enjoy to some degree, with the stars and galaxies exhibiting an unparalleled performance of spectacular visuals. But living as we do in packed cities or alongside brightly lit roads, it will come as no surprise that many people have never witnessed the night sky unspoilt by electric lights. Hopping on a sailing cruise is a great way to get away from the glow, and to finally come face to face with a magnificent open vista of velvet black, scattered with stars.

If this is part of your sailing cruise that you’re particularly looking forward to, it’s worth checking out some of our tips below for optimising your stargazing.

1. Choose your destination

If you’re looking for prime stargazing opportunities during your sailing tour, it’s worth going for a destination that offers minimal light pollution. It’s no good opting for an itinerary that sees you spending one evening after another in major ports. Fortunately, at Greek Water Yachts, we specialise in smaller scale sailing cruise vessels that allow for intimate exploration of our destinations. This allows us to visit more isolated parts

Places To Visit In Russia

There are so many fascinating places to visit in Russia that it can be overwhelming to try to choose which ones to include in your itinerary. Read on to learn what are my favorite places to see in Europe’s easternmost country.

Most people start with Moscow or St Petersburg. Moscow, the current capital of the country is an overcrowded metropolis, constructed when the communist rulers planned for everyone to use public transportation, and is stuffed full of Soviet-era concrete block buildings. In between them are some real treasures. Red Square, with the fantastic St Basil’s church on one end, is of great interest to anyone who can remember the days when the Soviets paraded their missiles through the square on important holidays. On one side of the square is the mammoth GUM department store. The other side is edged by the Kremlin Wall, with Lenin’s Tomb in front of it. A tour of the Kremlin and the Armory with its collection of jewelry and Faberge eggs, among other items, provides a glimpse of the opulence of the Romanov tsars. Beyond the Kremlin, Moscow has numerous art museums and attractions such as the Bolshoi Ballet and the Moscow Circus. Boat

Ciudad de México Un Centro Global

Definidas como un centro urbano con influencia nacional, regional e internacional, las llamadas Ciudades Globales son muy diversas y son sede de grandes compañías, corporativos internacionales, casas de bolsa, tecnología de punta, centros educativos y transporte moderno (Gregorio, 2011). Por éstas y muchas otras características, la Ciudad de México logró consolidar su imagen como una ciudad global. Estas son sólo 10 razones detrás de esto:

1. Primeras etapas: El primer momentum de la internacionalización de la Ciudad de México sucedió en las décadas de 1920 y 1930, cuando hubo un auge de la escena artística (especialmente gracias al movimiento del Muralismo mexicano) y grandes personajes que vivían en esta ciudad, como Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo y Dolores del Río (quien incluso logró hacer carrera en Hollywood) la dotaron de fama y reconocimiento mundial. Un segundo clímax sucedió en la década de los 1960, cuando la ciudad experimentó una bonanza económica, su industria cinematográfica obtuvo reconocimiento internacional, se organizó un movimiento estudiantil en 1968 comparable a los de Paris y Praga y la ciudad fue sede de los Juegos Olímpicos por primera vez.

2. Laboratorio mundial: Desde 2006, el Gobierno de la ciudad implementó una estrategia cuyo

Washington, DC’s Five Best Winter Weekend Getaways

Take a Dip in Hot Springs

Driving time: about four hours

Seek some respite from the cold temperatures with a long soak in some presidentially approved hot springs. The Jefferson Pools at the Omni Homestead Resort—located in the aptly named Hot Springs, Virginia—flow naturally from the Allegheny Mountains and are so restorative that Thomas Jefferson was said to have soaked here back in 1818. From January 7 onward, one of the two pools will be open Thursdays through Sundays, from noon to 5 p.m.; an hour-long soak costs $17.

In addition to the Jefferson Pools, The Homestead also offers an expansive spa outfitted with an Aqua Thermal Suite: home to experiential showers, a detoxifying herbal cocoon room, a cold cabin, and thermal heated lounges. While you’re there, you might as well take advantage of all the other winter activities it has to offer. These include skiing and snowboarding on the resort’s own slopes, ice skating, and tubing down the Penguin Slides.

Hole Up in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Driving time: about three hours

Gather a group of good friends and head for the Blue Ridge Mountains for a classic seasonal experience: the

Two minute travel guide to Manchester, UK

Getting About

The staple way of getting around quickly and easily is the trams; they connect the major railway stations and tourist attractions. If you’re coming from overseas you will fly into the UK’s third largest airport, which provides all major travel to worldwide destinations for Northern England. With regular trams and buses it’s easy to get to the city centre.

Eating Out

The Northern Quarter has loads of different foodie hotspots. For something traditional, Manchester House lies close to the docks and serves up local produce, famous for their modern twist on the local dessert, the Manchester tart. For something a bit cheaper, try Guerilla Eats, it offers the best of classic street food, without breaking the bank.

History & Culture

Don’t miss out on the amazing offering of theatres and museums. Visit The Lowry on the rejuvenated Salford quays, the Royal Exchange Theatre and The Manchester Museum which regularly has a variety of different exhibitions. And if you get the chance, don’t forget about the Cathedral.

Entertainment

The Smiths, the Stone Roses and Oasis are just a few of the British bands from the city. The Ritz and Albert

Helping Children Understand the Value of Ocean Conservation

Ocean Conservation is a humanity step taken towards saving and preserving Our Mother Nature and its resources. Humans are blessed with intelligence and are advised to conserve ocean and marines. Children Learn the Value of Conservation of the Ocean School age children may be more conscious of conservation than their parents and teachers realize. With the seas rising and flooding inland becoming an annual problem, children struggle to understand why oceans are undergoing massive destructive changes. Educating children on the value of ocean conservation helps them grow more aware of the dangers to their environment and ecological balance.   A Solid Education in Conservation Children of preschool age learn much about the ocean from regular vacations to places like the US Virgin Islands. They can be taught the basics of swimming and snorkeling while parents point out various oceanic components like the tides, species of fish and the differences in ocean water quality. By the time children begin formal education in elementary school, they are fully informed of the basics required to keep oceans clean and safe. From this point, learning more about ocean conservation can be part of school projects. Children can form groups that are designed

The 12 most-read 2011 articles in Travel

Over the course of the year, Independent.co.uk‘s travel writers have been traversing the globe to bring you the latest in travel news, features and advice from all corners.

Bringing together in-depth features from the weekly Traveller magazine and the Sunday travel pages, as well as daily pieces of breaking travel news, Travel on Independent.co.uk is a busy and perpetually advancing section, and this year’s most popular articles within it are a fair representation of the scope of coverage by our expert journalists.

The 12 most read are those Travel articles published in 2011 that have been visited by the greatest number of separate users to date.

The list (click the headlines to read articles in full)

1. Overcrowded, overpriced and overrated: welcome to Britain
By Tom Peck, Wednesday 11 May

Not the most optimistic article to get our list going – this story by news reporter Tom Peck looks at Lonely Planet’s latest guide to Britain, in which it is less than complimentary of our dear home. As for its popularity, perhaps this story provided readers heading to our travel pages with just the right excuse to be heading on extravagant overseas

Why No One Talks About SEO Anymore

Hiring Local SEO Companies to Enhance Your Business Local SEO will help you in so many ways and that is why it is important to hire them when you plan on running your business in the best possible way. This would definitely be the ideal option for you seeing as you are likely going to start with local clients. There are so many ways to improve your business when you have these companies to rely on and you’d even be able to take advantage of the techniques which they are regularly offering to ensure a high web rank as well. There are tons of benefits to these companies so make sure you hire them when you can. Your web ranking would surely be decent when you make good decisions for your company concerning these matters. You are going to be offering services to people in your city and that is why you have to make sure they get everything they need when it comes to local services. You need to take advantage of search engines because that’s how people are going to be able to access your business and that is how they will know of your services

Five Family Friendly Caribbean Spring Break Destinations

1. Curaçao isn’t just a frivolous blue drink

A tiny island just off the coast of Venezuela, Curaçao doesn’t look like much on a map, but discovering its rich culture and history makes it a worthwhile stop. Curaçao is not just a place to lie on a beach – although there are plenty of opportunities to do that, too. The island is bursting with art and energy, flora and fauna and truly unique food styles derived from a multitude of different international cuisine styles paired with super fresh seafood. Sunscape is the only all-inclusive resort, spa & casino in the area, and it is very nice. Regally large and with 341 rooms and suites, four swimming pools including one with a swim-up bar, five restaurants and a café and nightly live entertainment. Outside of the resort, visitors can get to know the local marine life by going to school at Dolphin Academy and get up close with the friendly beasts while learning about marine conservation, or visit the Curaçao Sea Aquarium, which houses an underwater conservatory in a semi-submarine and also offers a hands-on experience to introduce visitors to sea lions.

2. Go adventuring around Punta

Helping Children Understand the Value of Ocean Conservation

Ocean Conservation is a humanity step taken towards saving and preserving Our Mother Nature and its resources. Humans are blessed with intelligence and are advised to conserve ocean and marines. Children Learn the Value of Conservation of the Ocean School age children may be more conscious of conservation than their parents and teachers realize. With the seas rising and flooding inland becoming an annual problem, children struggle to understand why oceans are undergoing massive destructive changes. Educating children on the value of ocean conservation helps them grow more aware of the dangers to their environment and ecological balance.   A Solid Education in Conservation Children of preschool age learn much about the ocean from regular vacations to places like the US Virgin Islands. They can be taught the basics of swimming and snorkeling while parents point out various oceanic components like the tides, species of fish and the differences in ocean water quality. By the time children begin formal education in elementary school, they are fully informed of the basics required to keep oceans clean and safe. From this point, learning more about ocean conservation can be part of school projects. Children can form groups that are designed

At Home Key West Unveils Six Distinctive Old Town Steamplant Luxury Rentals

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

KEY WEST, Fla. — At Home Key West Vacation Rentals announced the immediate, first-time availability of six special new Vacation Rentals in Key West. Located in the historic Key West Steamplant development, the six unique, two-floor monthly rental units are some of the most luxurious in the state. Each unit offers easy access to Key West’s famed Duval Street entertainment district and boasts a unique design theme that reflects the distinctive history and character of the area.

“We’re happy to announce that our six new Steamplant Luxury Vacation Rentals are now available to reserve by the month,” At Home Key West Vacation Rentals representative Amy Tomasello said, “These units rank among the most attractive, distinctive, and desirable properties in all of Key West, and early response to them has been highly enthusiastic. Visitors will enjoy some of the most luxurious and spacious accommodations to be found in the area, with all the excitement of Old Town right nearby.”

For years thought of by many as an eyesore, the decommissioned Trumbo Road steam plant that had once provided all of Key West with electricity has since been turned into something else entirely. Although

Review of the InterContinental Hong Kong

The bathroom, too, is something else. Firstly, the bathtub complete with countless jets is so big that you could fit a whole Hong Kong Rugby Sevens team in it. It’s also perched right by floor-to-ceiling glass windows offering sweeping views of the city while you bathe. The super–high-tech showers also offer the same stunning view. And then there’s the private steam room and sauna. Oh, and Chanel toiletries.

But it’s the suite’s private pool that has really become an iconic image across the world. And it’s not hard to see why. It’s large for worldwide private villa standards, let alone space-starved Hong Kong standards. Nestled alongside the pool is a private sunbathing area. And to the right, a trellised hangout spot where many-a-celebrity has hosted a luxurious private party.

But if the Presidential Suite is a little out of your budget, the rest of the hotel ain’t too shabby, either. Many of the rooms offer awesome city views, and all include InterContinental’s top-notch customer service.

The hotel’s pool deck is a huge draw. There’s the large main pool surrounded by ample deckchairs, as well as a three-temperature, infinity-edge Jacuzzi pool, which has more of those

Goa Tour Package Perfect Place For Relaxing Holidays

We are providing the Goa tour package , if you are also planning for a  trip to Goa , and looking for a tour package then just come to us , we can help you in this.  From the west coast of India, Goa, featuring its idyllic beaches, a hint of romance while the promise of an unforgettable holiday that combines ambient scenic charm with a mouthwatering array of seafood’s to titillate the taste buds and also have you hungering for more (of this good stuff of life), is a quaint combination of the bold and the beautiful. The gorgeous old churches, chapels, crosses and convents, which dot the countryside and the deep abiding faith and religious fervor of the Goans has, much more recent times, rightfully earned it the sobriquet of Rome for the East! A number of these churches, especially in Old Goa, date back again to almost half a millennium and were constructed during the early days of Portuguese rule when St. Francis Xavier and his band of followers began their missionary work. Prominent among these are the Se Cathedral with its exquisite Tuscan Doric architecture and the Basilica of Bom Jesus, housing the immortal

Pirate Tales of Costa Rica

Tall tales of tall ships carrying priceless treasures have been repeated throughout history and have spurred many treasure hunters to risk life and limb searching for lost gold silver and religious symbols adorned with jewels. Costa Rica is rich in pirate history with some of the most recognized pirates claiming to have buried vast treasures on it’s shores. Looking at a map it is easy to see that Costa Rica is a likely place for these marauders to hide their booty. The miles of rugged coast, offshore islands, and protected bays make for perfect hiding places. Isla del Coco or Coco Island is by far the most famous place in Costa Rica’s pirate history. The tiny island that Jacque Cousteau called “the most beautiful island in the world” and was also on the short list to become one of the “New Seven Wonders of the World” may be hiding more than just natural beauty within its rugged landscape.
Wafer Bay, Cocos Island Costa Rica

Wafer Bay, Cocos Island Costa Rica

One of the most famous lost treasures is the “Treasure of Lima” Like most treasure hunts in Central America this story begins with a European country,