World's Top Golf Resorts: Train and Play for Your Vacation!

The finest golf resorts in the United States, Europe, Mexico and the Caribbean can be your choice for your next vacation. Make it a train-and-play golf vacation! So many package deals are available to make your trip much more than a break from your routine. A golf vacation will be a practical experience of improving your golf game, enjoying a phenomenally peaceful and luxurious setting, and visiting a different state or a different country! This planning guide will point you to some of the best-rated golf resorts in the world.

Whether you absolutely book for yourself or through an experienced golf travel specialist, begin your research online where you can find premium golf courses and travel bargains. Rates, resort amenities and golf course details are available. But look further for the packages that include airfare, hotel accommodations and green fees to get your best value. The typical packaged Golf Resort Vacation will include most of these features:

  • Airfare
  • Resort Accommodations
  • Confirmed Tee Times
  • Prepaid Green Fees
  • Shared Cart for 18 Holes
  • Equipment Rental
  • Golf Lessons
  • Meals at Exclusive Restaurants
  • Transfers to the Course
  • Transfers to the Airport
  • All Taxes and Service Charges

Golf courses are planned in lovely surroundings where you can take in sea breezes or views of lush vegetation, and you can combine golf with other resort amenities to provide a well-rounded vacation.

For instance, try one of the many glamorous Club Med Golf Resorts with beautiful fairways in the most unforgivable, inviting locations around the world. Club Med offers deals including the best equipment and golf lessons for all levels! Its locations include Cancun, Mexico, as well as Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Other locations span the world: Turks and Caicos, Mauritius, Portugal, France, Italy, Brazil, Thailand, Morocco, Egypt, Senegal, and in the United States – Sandpiper Bay, Florida.

Scotland has some of the most beautiful golf courses in the world and there are approximately 100 resorts, called "golf hotels," among the 500-plus golf courses throughout the country. Best known are Turnberry, Gleneagles and The Old Course Hotel St. Louis. Andrews. Each of these spa, leisure facilities, excellent restaurants and "golf tuition" packages for all levels.

Mexico has numerous golf resorts perched in luxurious coastal locations. There are golf resorts at Cancun, Acapulco, Puerto Vallarta and Los Cabos. Also, Mexico has its championship Baja version of California's famous "Pebble Beach" golf resort, called Bajamar, only a few hours' drive from San Diego in Ensenada.

For the United States, check online for some of the golf resorts recommended by key magazines such as Golflink 's which publishes The Top 100 United States Golf Courses. This issue ranks the best out of more than 21,000 public and private golf courses across the country. However, within that one hundred courses, you want to search for the resorts with package programs and golf lessons. Among the top hundred, you will find that the main vacation-destination states with golf resorts are in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, South Carolina and Texas. Let's review these states for their best locations:

  • In sunny, always temperate Florida, Club Med's Sandpiper Bay Golf Academy offers 2-day and 3-day golf courses. The Academy includes all aspects of the game, such as Chipping, Putting, Bunker, Pitching and Lob Shot, Full Swing with Irons and Woods. A video analyzing your swing is provided, as well as an optional video comparing your swing to that of a pro player. Also, the area within and around Miami has regional golf resorts for year-round vacationing. Each resort offers on-site amenities and services, both on and off the course, and minutes away from major Miami attractions, like South Beach and Miami MetroZoo. You will have a multitude of options during a golf vacation here.
  • Arizona has a climate that is suitable for many months of the year and Scottsdale has nearly 200 golf courses, many with the picturesque backdrop of the Sonoran Desert. It is a golf destination with golf schools and pro shops. Here, many resorts offer high-quality accommodations and championship golf courses. Most golf resorts offer packages where hotel guests can have discounted green fees. Also, Sedona, Arizona, offers numerous golf resorts with a mild year-round climate and spectacular red-rock scenic views.
  • In California, Pebble Beach has been known for being a small coastal golf destination nestled in beautiful Monterey County. It is home to the prominent Pebble Beach Golf Links, the Pebble Beach Lodge and the pristigious Inn at Spanish Bay. Each year, golfers return to rub shoulders with golf professionals and experience nature at its finest on the magnificent golf course laid out by leading golf course designers. The harmony of golf layouts and the majestic coast are awe-inspiring!
  • Another golfer's paradise is conveniently located along the south Atlantic coast at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. It combines natural beauty and world-class golf on a barrier island 12 miles long and five miles wide. Nicklaus, Palmer and other golf legends have regularly played these championship courses. Since the first course opened at Sea Pines in 1961, there are now emerald links at Harbor Town and outstanding courses in Bluffton, as the Hilton Head area has become a major golf center. It is legendary for its spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean, scenic marshes, and maritime forests with abundant wildlife. The temperate climate and year-round sunshine also makes Hilton Head Island the perfect place to tee off.
  • Las Vegas, Nevada, is quietly emerging as one of the United States' fastest growing golf destinations amidst the glitz and glamor of its casinos. The city's huge convention center and innumerable hotel rooms make it a natural haven for large-scale golf events. With the year-round sunshine and mild temperatures, and plenty to do after a full day of playing golf from gambling to seeing entertaining shows, this golf destination will continue to grow.
  • CNN ranked Austin, Texas the No. 1 city for golf in its Golf.com of 2010. Framed by the Texas Hill Country, Austin's golf courses are among the best in the United States. The region is highlighted by the Wolfdancer Golf Club which was named No. 2. 56 in Golfweek 's top 100 resort golf courses in 2009. In addition to being a great contemporary music city, and home of numerous celebrities, Austin offers vacationing golfers great barbeque, an idyllic, year-round climate and luxury accommodations.

Your best package deal will be at all-inclusive resorts, where air flight, lodging, meals and golf activities are rolled into one price. On the other hand, consider traditional hotels and resorts in the locations recommended. With a little online planning, one of the finest golf resorts in the world can be your affordable choice. Enjoy the location, the exploration of the region while you improve your golf game and provide a joyful, well-rounded vacation for your family and loved ones!

(c) 2012 Elizabeth McMillian

The World's Most Beautiful National Parks

National Parks are one of the top adventures.

Yellow Stone:
Yellowstone National Park being 3,500-sq.-mile, is a wilderness recreation area atop a volcanic hot spot. The park spreads into parts of Montana. It features dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, hot springs and gushing geysers, including its most famous. It's also home to hundreds of animal species, wolves, bison, elk and antelope.

Grand Canyon:
Grand Canyon National Park is home to much of the huge Grand Canyon, with its layered bands of red rock revealing millions of years of environmental history. Views include Mather Point, Yavapai Observation Station and architect Mary Colter's Lookout Studio.

Yosemite:
Yosemite National Park is in California's Sierra Nevada foothills. It's famous for its giant, ancient sequoia trees, and for Tunnel View, the iconic vista of high Bridalveil Fall and the granite cliffs of El Capitan and Half Dome. In Yosemite Village are shops, restaurants, lodging, the Yosemite Museum and the Ansel Adams Gallery.

Kruger:
Kruger National Park, in South Africa, is one of Africa's largest game assets. Its high thickness of wild animals includes the Big 5: lions, rhinos, elephants and buffalos. Other mammals make their home here, as do diverse bird species such as vultures, eagles and storks. Mountains, and tropical forests are all part of the countryside.

Torres del Paine:
Torres del Paine National Park, in Chile's Patagonia area, is known for it's rising mountains, bright blue icebergs that slice from glaciers and golden pampas (grasslands) that housing rare wildlife such as llama-like guanacos. Some of its greatest iconic sites are the 3 granite towers from which the park takes its name and the peaks called Cuernos del Paine.

Serengeti:
Serengeti National Park is known for its huge annual migration of wildebeest and zebra. Seeking new meadow, the mobs move north from their background grounds in the grassy southern plains. Numerous cross the marshy western corridor of crocodile-infested Grumeti River. Others turn northeast to the Lobo Hills, home to black eagles. Black rhinos live the granite outcrops of the Moru Kopjes.

Fiordland:
Fiordland National Park is in the southwest of New Zealand's South Island. It's known for the glacier-carved fiords of Uncertain sounds. A beach forest trail on the sandy Milford shore proposals views of soaring Miter Peak. Attached, the craggy Earl Mountains are reflected in the smooth surface of Mirror Lakes. On the Cleddau River, the Chasm Walk passes over bridges with views of powerful waterfalls.

Zion:
Zion National Park is a southwest Utah nature reserve illustrious by Zion Canyon's steep red cliffs. Zion Canyon Scenic Drive scratches through its main section, leading to forest tracks along the Virgin River. The river streams to the Emerald Pools, which have waterfalls and a droopy garden. Also along the river, partly through deep chasms, is Zion Narrows wading hike.

Lakes National Park being 295-sq.-km, is a forest reserve in central Croatia. It's recognized for a chain of 16 terraced lakes, combined by waterfalls, that extend into a limestone canyon. Walkways and hiking trails breeze around and across the water, and an electric boat links the 12 upper and 4 minor lakes. The later are the site of Veliki Slap, a 78 meters tall waterfall.

Glacier:
Glacier National Park being 1,583-sq.-miles, is a wilderness area in Montana's Rocky Mountains, with glacier-carved peaks and valleys running to the Canadian border. It's traversed by the mountainous. Amongst additional 700 miles of mountaineering trails, it has a route to attractive Hidden Lake. It has the activities of backpacking, cycling and camping. Diverse wildlife ranges from mountain goats to grizzly bears.

The Do's and Don'ts of Traveling in India

DO

Take a Yoga class

India is famous for its Yoga, and you will find classes available in almost every place you will visit on your India tour. The most popular forms of Yoga are hatha yoga, pranyama yoga and ashtanga yoga.

I am not really into yoga myself but I did sign up for a course while I was in Mt. Abu and I am glad I did. It was a great experience and I loved the peacefulness of the class while also looking over some of the most spectacular views I had ever seen. One thing I did not enjoy though, was the 6am starts!

Try the food

One of the highlights of my India travels is getting to try all the delicious, wonderful foods on offer. I am a vegetarian and India is a great country food-wise for me as almost half the population are vegetarians meaning I have a fantastic choice of food! One of my favorite Indian foods is the South Indian masala dosa. This is a savory pancake made from rice batter and black lentils and is filled with an onion and coconut curry, it is so delicious. This is the first food I seek out whenever I travel around India and I can not get enough. It is meant to be a breakfast but I eat it at any time of the day!

In Kerala, seafood is highly popular and most dishes will have fried seafood or curried seafood in it, usually cooked with coconut oil or milk. A lot of the food is served up in banana leaves which makes it delicious and nice to look at.

Another dish I love is the thali which literally translates as plate. It is a dish that comes from central, northern and western India and the contents vary from region to region. It usually comes as a metal tray with a few different compartments which are all filled with different foods. Typically you will find your thali filled with rice, dhal (lentils), vegetables, roti (bread), poppadums and curd (yogurt). They are very inexpensive and readily available at local restaurants and a great way to try different foods if you are not sure what to order.

See a Bollywood movie in Mumbai

Bollywood is big news in India there are more than 900 Bollywood films made a year and the worldwide audience for Bollywood films is about 3.7 billion compared to 2.6billion for Hollywood. I have traveled to Mumbai quite a few times and have even appeared as an extra in quite a few Bollywood films. I got approached to appear in some films by a Bollywood agent in Mumbai. It was a lot of fun, it meant I was able to visit the studios and see how the films were made and I also got to meet some Bollywood stars like Salman Khan and Priyanka Chopra.

During my India travels, I went to a Bollywood movie at one of the many cinemas in Mumbai and it was a fantastic experience. The film was in Hindi but it did not matter as there was so much singing and dancing and I could generally understand what was going on. However, the film I went to see was the first film where the male and female lead kissed on the lips so I was not prepared for all the excitement that it would cause – everyone got up and started cheering and dancing. A crazy experience to say the least!

DO NOT

Play with monkeys

Monkeys have lived side by side with humans in India for many years and there are many towns and cities where you will see them (or be overrun by them). Seeing monkeys running around and being cute is great, especially as we are not used to them living in the wild in the UK. However, it's important to be aware that they are not always so cute. So, try to avoid getting too close (especially to babies and their protective mothers). You can watch the monkeys and take photos but I would recommend always keeping at a safe distance during your India trip.

Give money to beggars

When you arrive into a big city in India one of the first thing that you will notice is the many child beggars which can come as quite a bit of a shock. It is natural to feel sorry for them and you might be tempted to give them money but I would strongly recommend not doing so on your India trip.

Most of the time the child is not working alone and is in fact begging for adults or family members who do not have the child's best interests at heart and it is illegally they will even see any of the money. Children are used as a marketing ploy as they have more awareness potential than adults and are often exploited for this reason.

Therefore, if you are looking to donate money then I would advise going through a reputable charity like Pratham, a charity for children in India or SOS children's villages where you can actually sponsor a child in India.

Wear revealing clothes

Women should be careful about wearing revealing clothes in whilst traveling in India as it is likely to attract a lot of unnecessary attention from men which can get a bit annoying. The more flesh you tend to show the more likely you are to get lewd comments or guys staring. If you cover up you will get more respect and it is also compulsory to cover up when visiting sacred sites anyway.

You do not have to cover yourself in full head to toe dress, but be respectful of local custom and do not wear tank tops or tops showing your underwear or skirts that are too short.

Washington DC Passport and Visa Services for Washington

If a resident of Washington prefers to get his passport ready, he has to undergo certain procedures. A citizen of US who is living in Washington has a right to get passport of United States. He can apply for passport normally by filling application in the nearest local agency or by the use of well-qualified expediting service. Some factors depend on how the people apply for passport.

Washington Passport agencies:
Many post offices have the authorization to accept the passport applications. And the authority is issued to country clerk's agencies and municipal libraries throughout the Washington state. People are free to take the necessary promise and signatures on their application forms in the occurrence of any authorized passport executive in these locales.

The subsequent countries have no less than below mentioned passport agencies: Yakima, Whatcom, Wahkiakum, Stevens, Snohomish, Skagit, Pierce, Pacific, Lincoln, Klickitat, Kitsap, Jefferson, Adams, Benton, Clallam, Columbia, Douglas, Franklin, Grant, Harbor, Whitman, etc.

The country named King has fifty passport agencies throughout the country. However, some countries do not have a single passport office. Now a day, to complete process of applying for passport takes about six to seven weeks. The advance service makes the people to run around for many times to get their passport applications processed. The candidates who are eagerly waiting to get their passport done, has to undergo the below processes.

Seattle Passport Office
This Seattle Passport office focuses on residents of Washington who are urgently looking forward to get their passport. In such circumstances the candidate must submit a copy of departure program. Then the regional office can process the applications on the particular day.This agency opens at 8 am and closes at 3pm. This agency works five days in a week that is from Monday to Friday. The agents have to verify the applications thoroughly and accept it.

Specialized Passport Expediters
Regional agencies know that, because of the location it is difficult for all the applicants to come and apply for the passport directly. So there are some passport expeditors which are registered officially with regional agencies.

Malta's Beaches Attract Thousand of Tourists Each Year

As temperatures hit 40 ° C on the tiny Mediterranean Island of Malta, locals and tourists alike are faced with only one dilemma – where shall we go today, sandy or rocky beach?

Although hotels pools are full up with tourists bathing and licking the sun, Malta's beaches are still the main attraction for sea lovers.

According to some, there is a latent negative touch to going to a sandy beach and enjoying oneself. No matter how hard you wash and scrub there is an inevitability that the microscopic specks will keep coming out of your body for days on end.

And try, if you can, to clean the inside of your car afterwards. Ouch. Still, people enjoy the cushioning effect the sandy beach gives them while they sunbathe and, let's face it, what better way is there to keep the kids occupied than hours of endless sandcastle creating.

Malta's sandy beaches are often small and hidden away in Sheltered little bays difficult to reach, but there are also some big ones where the holidaying crowds gather in their multitudes to spend their days among the ice-cream vendors, the forest of umbrellas and the fast -food outlets. Ghadira Bay, Ghajn Tuffieha Bay, Golden Sands, Paradise Bay, Pretty Bay and Armier Bay provide the main sandy beaches on Malta, while Xlendi Bay, Marsalforn and the splendid Ramla l-Hamra beckon on Gozo. There are also two sandy beaches on Comino – Santa Marija Bay and San Niklaw Bay.

The demand for sandy beaches is ever so vociferous that the Maltese authorities have also wisely – and quite successfully at St George's Bay and Bugibba – embarked on perched-beach projects intended for the enlargement of some of the smaller sandy beaches and the conversion into sandy patches of rocky shores in a concentrated effort to fulfill demand.

As I said, picking sand out of your orifices for weeks on end might not be everyone's cup of tea. But for those who love them, Malta has just about enough beaches to make your holiday perfect.

Although sand is not Malta's largest natural resource there are still plenty of beaches to choose from, most of which are located in the north of Malta and a couple in Gozo. Getting to the ones in the north of Malta is best done by car if you are renting or by bus if not. Others, like St George's Bay, are more centrally located. Your best bet is to check out a map and see which one is closest to you!

But for those of you who are not overly enthused by the idea of ​​sand in every crevice, Malta has an abundant supply of rocky beaches. These places which are literally littered around the island are ideal locations for taking your daily dip, towing off and relaxing without the worry of sand getting in your ears.

Of course it is a question of preference, the sandy beach vs rocky beach dilemma which spoils visitors to Malta for choice. Some of the top rocky beaches in Malta are Anchor Bay, Ghar Lapsi, Marsascala Bay, Marsaxlokk Bay, Mistra Bay, Salina Bay, St Thomas Bay, St Paul's Bay and Sliema sea front.

There are also great rocky beaches at Marsalforn Bay and Xlendi Bay in Gozo, while Comino, that strange, barren, little island caught mid-sea between Malta and Gozo, boasts, in its Blue Lagoon, perhaps the clearest water off a rocky beach anywhere in the Mediterranean. Most rocky beaches have very good facilities for showering, dining and relaxing. If you can not build sand castles, you can hire boats and go water skiing, while some of the top diving clubs operate from the rocky shores at very reasonable rates.

In the evening, it is a joy to go back there and watch anglers hooking some interesting-looking fish from the very spot you were swimming in a few hours earlier. The late-evening barbecue parties come next with their heavy cases of cool beer and enough food to feed a regiment. It is a completely different scene from daytime, one that openly dictates the tempo of life in the Mediterranean – allegro andante. It will be difficult switching back to that other tempo you left behind …. if you can even remember it.

While sand may not be Malta's strong point, rocks are something we have a plenty. So finding a rocky beach is generally as simple as stepping outside your front door. The vast majority of Malta's shoreline is open to the public and you will normally find people swimming from just about every available rocky outcrop during the summer months. Just be careful of any warning signs that may be in place. And of the sharp bits.

Las Vegas Grand Canyon West Rim Bus Tours

Comfortable and cheap, Las Vegas Grand Canyon West Rim bus tours offer a number of fantastic upgrades ranging from the Grand Canyon Skywalk to Colorado River rafting.

Let's take a closer look at these West Rim bus tours:

West Rim

Basic bus tour to Grand Canyon West. Includes all park entrance fees. Hop the free shuttle and check out a variety of viewpoints. Must-see sights include Eagle Point, Guano Point, the Colorado River, and the fantastic Skywalk. Explore an authentic Hualapai Indian Village. Skywalk tickets are extra can be purchased on-site.

Grand Canyon Skywalk

This is the standard West Rim bus tour with Skywalk tickets. Best deal. Bridge extends 70 feet past the edge with the Colorado River 4,000-feet below. This amazing glass structure can support 71 fully loaded 747 airplanes but maximum occupancy is 120 people.

Helicopter Descent with Boat Tour

Transfer to an EcoStar 130 helicopter and descend 4,000 feet to the base. Deplane. Enjoy a Champagne toast under an authentic Indian Ramada. Ask your guide to show you the petroglyphs. Head upstream to pontoon boat for float ride down Colorado River.

Bus tours are all-inclusive and come with free shuttle service, a light breakfast, BBQ lunch, photo-stop at Hoover Dam, and professional driver-guide. Trip duration ranges from half a day to 12 hours for the helicopter-boat package. Internet prices start at $ 94.

The West Rim, located 120 miles away from Vegas, takes a bus 2.5 hours to reach. Luxury motor coaches service this route, and feature climate-controlled cabins, plush seats, lots of leg room, clean bathrooms, over-sized windows, VCRs, and a pre-recorded tour narration translated into more than 10 languages.

Bus tours, which run every day of the year, typically depart in the morning. The drive will take you past Lake Mead with a stop at Hoover Dam before crossing the Arizona state line. The final stretch takes you through a 700-year-old Joshua Tree forest before turning on a dirt road to Grand Canyon West. These "bonus" sights really make this Las Vegas bus tour a great value.

I recommend that all my readers book their bus tours early, preferably a week or two in advance. This ensures you get a great seat on the day you want to take the tour. If you book the day before you go or on the same day, expect to pay a hefty premium.

The best bus deals are found on the Internet. Try tour operator websites first. I've found that many of them offer the best discounts, including one that slashes up to 35% off the retail price. Remember to pack your trip confirmation with you – you'll need it to board the bus.

Canyon bus tours to the West Rim offer the trip-savvy visitor a great deal. These all-inclusive trips come with everything you need to enjoy the canyon. Plenty of trip add-ons, too, like Skywalk tickets and river rafting. For the best prices, make sure to shop the Internet. Then, once you've made your reservations, buckle up for adventure. The West Rim is loaded with action, and the bus is the best way to get yourself in the middle of it.

La Romana Is a Wonderful Dominican Republic Destination

When you are looking to visit the Dominican Republic but are unsure where to go, consider La Romana. This incredible area caters very much to the tourist crowd and is a perfect place to explore, relax, and enjoy the beauty of the Caribbean. From here, it is easy to take a trip to Catalina Island, and the area is also quite near Santo Domingo as well as Punta Cana. There are numerous attractions here, and finding something amazing to do takes very little effort indeed.

One of the things that makes La Romana so remarkable is that it designed for almost anyone to enjoy. The area is perfect for people seeking a relaxing getaway, yet it offers plenty of resorts and clubs for those seeking an exciting nightlife. La Romana is a perfect family destination as well, and there are numerous activities for you and your family members to enjoy. If you want to go scuba diving, play a few games of golf, or visit some of the best beaches that the Dominican Republic has to offer, you will never have to leave La Romana to do so.

This destination offers ample entertainment options. From world class shops and local craft stores to horseback riding and incredible day trips, there is something for everyone. You can easily visit the tropical Saona Island, take a trip to Bayahibe Town, or explore the Fun Fun Cave. The Cave of Wonders is another incredible attraction that brings in visitors from around the world.

If you are interested in a vacation to La Romana, an all inclusive package can be your best choice. There are plenty of resorts and packages to choose from, making it easy to find the right destination for you. The Dominican Republic is an incredible place to be, and La Romana is certainly among the top places to stay in the area.

Mallorca Festivals

Spain has festivals that continue all year long. No matter what time of year you visit Spain, you will find something happening and festive going on. Mallorca is no different since there are many festivals that are celebrated in the island and also in its surrounding areas at many times in the years. While you are visiting Mallorca, you can find many magazines and other publications that are specifically printed for tourists highlighting the upcoming events of the year.

If you are visiting in January, you can enjoy festivals, such as Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos, Sant Antoni Abat and Sant Sebastia. All of these festivals include lots of eating and gathering around for bonfires and partying at different spots in the island. Sa Rua is celebrated in February and a festival that includes occasional bonfires and people dressed in traditional and fancy clothes. The holy week called Semana Santa is celebrated during the month of March and April. There are processes going on all over the island on almost every day of the week and a rather large one is held on Maundy Thursday.

As Mallorca is an island, there are several festivals specifically aimed at the fishermen community. However, the best part about these festivals is that you can participate in them as well. The people of Mallorca are very welcoming and you can visit festivals, such as Sant Pere and Pa Virgen del Carmen. These festivals celebrate and honor fishermen and lots of fishing boats can be seen floating around the water during these celebrations.

August is the time of year where you can see plenty of dancing and colorful celebration in Mallorca. The festival of Sant Bartomeu is one of the oldest celebrations of Mallorca where devil dancing is conducted. Sant Agusti is a fun filled celebration for children as well as adults where the kids dress up huge horses accompanied by music of drums and bagpipes.

You can comfortably travel with your family all over Mallorca by getting the services of rent a car in Mallorca. The fares are very affordable and you can see the island at your ease. Such services can also be availed from the Mallorca Airport.

Five Historic Places to Visit in Germany

When many people think of German history they immediately think of World War 2, however German history brings back further than the 20th century. In fact, many people do not realize that Germany old became the present day country as we know it today in the 1871.

Here are 5 places around the present day Germany to visit that earned their reputation well before the 20th century.

1. Hameline and the Tale of the Pied Piper – The story of the Pied Piper is a famous fairy tale that many children have heard over many generations. As a reminder the tale is set in Hameline (located in present central northern Germany) that is suffering from a rat infestation. After successfully solving the problem by playing his pipe and leading the rats to their death by drowning in the nearby river, the townsmen decide not to pay him. As revenge the jaded piper leads the town's children away from the town, never to be heard from again.

Modern day Hameline does not seem to suffer from any more rat problems, but it is a beautiful city for biking and hiking. You can even visit the Pied Piper's house which is a gallery of texts to everything related to the Pied Piper.

2. Berlin and The Brandenburg Gate – Erected in the 1730s, The Brandenburg Gate has witnessed many of Berlin's ups and downs through the years. Prior to the 20th century one of the most significant moments the Brandenburg Gate oversaw was the invasion of Napoleon Bonaparte. Napoleonan ordered that the Quadriga, or a representation of a four horse drawn chariot be pulled down and carted off to Paris. It was only returned to Germany in the late 20th century.

The Bradenburg Gate still stands proud today, and you can walk in the very area that Napoleon Bonaparte himself walked.

3. Munich and Oktoberfest – Perhaps one of the most famous annual German events. The first Oktoberfest was held to celebrate the marriage between Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on October 18, 1810. Oktoberfest when it started, and up to today is a celebration of German, and in particular Bavarian food and drink. However, due to the Napoleanic war and other disruptions Oktoberfest did not become an annual event until 1819. However, it has still canceled a total of 24 times to war, illness and other problems.

The modern day Oktoberfest has gone from strength to strength, and has built on many of events that unfolded well over 100 years ago. Recent numbers cited over 6 million people attended Munich's celebrations, this is not including the different regional celebrations for Oktoberfest that have swept Germany in the last 50 or so years.

4. The Cologne Carnival – There have been street parties going back before anyone noted them in any history books in Cologne, however it was not until the early 1800's that the Carnival became an officially managed part of the city.

The event takes place every year traditionally at 11 minutes past 11 on the 11th of November. Similar to carnivals in Rio de Janerio and Venice, the events go on for several days with many parades in the street featuring fancy costume. The entire city comes alive during this period, and for it is a real sight to see, especially for those that have not witnessed such a spectacle before.

5. Bonn and Beethoven – Permanent moving to Vienna and establishing his career there in his 20s, one of the most famous composers of all time, Ludwig Van Beethoven was born in Bonn.

It is possible to visit his birthplace at Bonngasse, and also the Beethovenhalle which was originally built in 1845, however has seen many recent reconstructions since.

Must See Destinations In Cuba

Visiting Cuba is certainly an experience to remember, and while you are there, you want to experience as much of the island as possible. There are ample sites that every visitor to Cuba should see if they have time. Today we will look at a few of Cuba's biggest must-see destinations.

The Museo de la Revolucion

This remarkable museum is impressive right from the start. Formerly the government headquarters as well as the Presidential Palace, the building is as impressive in structure as it is in content. Inside, you will learn the history of the remarkable island and how it struggled to gain independence from Spain.

Montemar Natural Park

If you are visiting the province of Matanzas, located about 75 miles from Havana, this park is certainly a remarkable site. You will find beautiful forests and some of the clearest and most beautiful lagoons in the world. There are also incredible plant and animal species in the area as well as reproduction village and much more.

Museo de la Ciudad

The Museum of the City is located in Havana, and is housed in a beautiful Baroque building. This building houses the city's collections of art and historic artifacts. There are a number of remarkable attractions and exhibits to explore, and visitors will surely be happy they made time to check out this incredible site.

Playas del Este

The Playas del Este is a chain of beautiful beaches located just outside the busy part of Havana. As popular with the locals as the tourists, the beaches offer a great place to spend time with Cuban natives and to explore life outside of the city.

Of course, these are only a few of the many attractions located in Cuba. Whether you want world class beaches, an exciting nightlife, or a cultural experience, there are plenty of options for you. Cuba is an incredible place to visit, and you will find that it is hard to go anywhere without seeing something really remarkable.