Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Getting the Best Laser Cut Map in Portland

Laser cutting has been around for a while now. When the manufacturing technique was introduced to the market, it was with the aim of eliminating processes such as machining. However, the processes have evolved and laser cutting is currently also used for processes such as the creation of decorative pieces. Here are a few things that you need to know about the laser cutting process, and the benefits that it comes with for the manufacturer and the users of the product.

The Process of Creating a Laser Cut Map 

Laser cut maps are the most beautiful addition that you can have for your living room décor. The cutting process involves: 

· Measure the length and width of the area that you want to cover with the laser cut map. 

· Think of the particular map which you want to be part of your design. It could be a topographical map, a simple map or any other kind of map. When you have the dimensions and the sample of the map, you can speak to the custom laser cut map manufacturers and give them the specifications. 

· The company will allow you to select a screen where the map will be laser cut into. There are other choices that you get to make, like the color of the which will illuminate the final design and whether you will have natural light illuminating the resulting map. 

· When all these details are collected by the custom map making experts, they will create the design for you and deliver it to you within a specified period. 

The process is as simple as getting the design and getting the expert to make it a reality. When finished, the maps are an awesome addition to your living room. 

The Benefits of the Map 

There are many benefits which come from investing in laser cut maps. First is the fact that they are unique works of art and when you install them in your living room, they create such a statement about your sense of style. Second is the fact that the laser cut maps are very durable. Due to the fact that these maps are created from metal, you can expect that they will stand the test of time better than maps made from fabric and even paintings. All you need to do is make sure that the metal is alloyed or galvanized to resist the elements of the weather. If these two options are not available, there are other finishing processes which will make the map stay without rusting. 

Another benefit which comes with the map is that if they are the right size, you can actually use them like screens to separate interior spaces, and this way, they will serve both a decorative and functional purpose. There is also the fact that the method is simpler, which makes it cheaper than older cutting and machining techniques. Last is the fact that the cutting process and technique offers less contamination of the working space, which means that the quality of the end product will be better than those created using the traditional cutting processes. 

These are some of the things that you need to know about laser cutting before getting a laser cut map in Portland. The most important part of the process is to get a reliable laser cutting technician, to pick the right material and specify the design you want to be made. When all these factors are combined, the end product becomes a very beautiful work of art.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Significant Kinetic Art Pieces of our Time

The Kinetic art shocked the art world with its revolutionary concept of motion. From its early stages until its peak, several kinetic masterpieces still left the public in awe for their intricate design. Here are some of the most popular and significant Kinetic art.

Bicycle Wheel (1913)

Marcel Duchamp was the man behind the Bicycle Wheel. He called his artworks ‘readymades’ which was intended as generally mass-produced objects, placed in galleries, and presented as works of art. 

Duchamp placed the bicycle wheel as part of his artwork. This art piece contains a movable object and thus the first example of Kinetic art. However, Duchamp was first associated with the Dada movement and the ‘Bicycle Wheel’ is a significant expression of the revolutionary concept of the movement; it pushes the boundaries of the art subject and establishes notions of artistic interpretation. Dada movement comprises of artists who defies any reason, logic, and aestheticism. Instead, Dadaism expresses irrationality, nonsense subjects, and anti-bourgeois protests in its artworks.

However, when Duchamp incorporated the bicycle wheel movement, it’s a significant piece in incorporating movement in an artwork. Duchamp described this essential artwork as a very enjoyable experience for him and compared his artwork as ‘flames dancing in a fireplace.’ The first people who viewed the Bicycle Wheel were invited to spin the wheel and Duchamp created more proto-Kinetic artworks like his Rotary Glass Plates or Precision Optics in 1920 and Roto-Reliefs in 1935 to 1965.

Although Duchamp did not intend his Bicycle Wheel as part of the Kinetic art movement, succeeding artist of the 1950s and 1960s refer to his work as a precursor of the tradition Kinetic art. Most Kinetic artists experimented with the interrelationship of technology and humanity. 

Kinetic Construction or Standing Wave (1920)

Years after the release of Bicycle Wheel, Naum Gabo launched his first Kinetic art piece entitled Kinetic Construction or more commonly known as Standing Wave. His art piece consists of a vertical steel rod affixed to a wooden base and activated using an electric motor. The rod creates an illusion of static yet curvilinear shape which formed entirely through movement. Many consider Standing Wave as the first Kinetic art made intentionally for its purpose.

Gabo made this sculpture in Moscow at the height of war-torn post-Revolutionary period. During that time, Russian artists were attempting to play their part in the construction of a new Utopian society. Kinetic Construction was made as a good example of the certain wave-forms moving through space to create an illusion of permanent and static presence. Gabo’s masterpiece pertains to the political, radical and technological view of Constructivism works of Kinetic art. 

Gabo and his brother Antoine Pevsner wants to demonstrate this new artistic concept on which he outlined in his ‘Realistic Manifesto”, the very first document of modern times to tackle the art of kinetics. He referred his works as ‘kinetic rhythms’ and that this art form should be affirmed: “as the basic forms of our perception of real time.”

Famous artists of the 1950s and 1960s tried to revive the technological and conceptual idea of Constructivist, creating a relationship between technology and art. Gabo’s standing wave represented the beginning of the Kinetic art era, for him Standing Wave is an "explanation of the idea than a Kinetic sculpture itself".

Arc of Petals (1941)

The Arc of Petals played as one of many good examples of free-standing ‘mobiles’ of which the sculptor Alexander Calder became famous for. He came from a family of prominent painters and sculptors before training as an artist. He took a degree in mechanical engineering an important skill in manipulating technical process needed in the Kinetic art.

The artworks resemble an inverted, suspended tree and comprise of the central spine of iron wire with different petals. The Arc of Petals sways with the wind, expressing the viewer’s interpretation of heaviness and lightness with each irregular pattern of movements. In creating such artworks, Calder defined a sub-genre of Kinetic aesthetics – one that is concerned with movement rather than the mechanized, modern world. 

Before his Arc of Petals, Calder was already known for creating mobiles set in motions using air currents. He used to create artworks using materials like pottery or glass. But he used a different medium of hand-crafted aluminum painted in different colors such as yellows, blues, blacks, and whites in creating Arc of Petals. 

Because of his unique works and great feat in producing Kinetic art pieces, he made an influence on several artists like Joan Miró and Jean Arp. They used painted aluminum petal and intentionally left several in the presentation the roughness and weight of the materials used.

Yellow Manifesto

Having these early artworks of Kinetic art, it did not become a prominent art form until 1955. The group exhibition called Le Mouvement held at the Galerie Denise René in Paris. The exhibits main event was an artwork made by Victor Vasarely entitled “Manifeste Jaune” or Yellow Manifesto, which uses black and white colors arranged in grids that suggest depth or motion. 

It quickly attracted the public eye as well as other artists across the globe. Kinetic art soon becomes a prevalent art form for almost a decade.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

10 Most Valuable Boating Tools You Ever Need

Ask anyone who loves the open seas if boating is fun, and they will answer yes straight in your face without batting an eye. Boating gives an extraordinary feeling of freedom and a sense of new found confidence. There a real reason why many dubbed Vitamin-Sea as such, a whip of fresh air, and lots of suns shine keeps depression at bay. With today’s modern world, technology and otherworldly vice control most of our lives, a day away from the bustling city lights can definitely recharge a tired soul. 

But being stuck in the wide open seas isn’t a very good idea at all. Nobody wants to be stranded out of nowhere especially when the Poseidon woke up on the wrong side of the bed. Fortunately, with boaters shelling out a thing or two about the secrets of boating, there are many ways to prevent such disasters. The internet of full of safety tips to the many how to’s of boating helping those new to this amazing outdoor activity.

With tips pouring in from across the globe, here are the ‘Top 10 Most Valuable Tools’ you ever need your boats. This list comprises of important tools and a comprehensive details that every boater should have whenever they sail the great wide seas. 

As there are many different types of boats, this toolkit kit may vary from one boater to another. Having a list is a great starting point for preparing to the inevitable. With the boating season fast approaching, it’s time to gather tools, make the itinerary, and sail away. Collecting these tools makes your boat complete and makes you confident to be ready for everything Mother Nature throws at you. Preparing the toolkit puts you in a lighter mood and gets you in the boating mood for that much-awaited spring get away. 

Without further ado, the Top Ten Tools you ever need are as follows: 

1. Adjustable Wrench/Crescent Wrench 

When in the middle of the night and storm fast approaching, you don’t have time to find the correct wrench size. Having this on hand makes that quick adjust stress and worry-free.

2. Crimping Tool

Electricals and water don’t go very well, and most boats have electrical problems particularly for the long-haul journey. A crimping tool can help you cut and strip insulation faster. 

3. Duct Tape and Electrical Tape

No explanation needed for this one, duct tape is every man’s best friend for almost every situation

4. Flashlight

Not just to see in the dark, flashlights serve as distress signal lights which in most cases saved many lives. 

5. Hammers

You can use hammers to flatten anvil, sled, and propeller dents.

6. Knife/Cutters

Watch every DIY shows and knives or cutters are ever present. This is another all-around tool anyone should have in their toolkit.

7. Pliers

You can use to loosen or tighten different fittings in your boat.

8. Screwdriver set

You don’t need the genius to tell you that your boat consists of countless bolts and screws, screwdriver set will be your best friend while on board.

9. Socket Set

Some engine cases are enclosed tightly and those hard to reach nuts can only be reached using a socket set.

10. Vice Grips

When voyaging alone, there are many situations where you may need a third hand badly. Vice grips can do the job well and hold any items at your own convenience. 

Depending on the boat size, there are many other tools recommended but these are the topmost useful tools. If you have a larger and more complex boat, it would be really wise to add few more tools and supplies on board. Remember the rule is to have a toolkit that concise and useful, and not just full of junks you don’t or can’t use. It would be nice to throw some items you rarely use, to be more efficient during dire times. 

Once you gather all your needed tools, look for a very sturdy toolbox – one that’s made for heavy-duty service. It should hold everything nicely and doesn’t rust like plastic or canvas that lighter than metal. Also, consider your storage space on board to house this toolbox. Another tip from expert boaters is to keep those commonly used tools from other less frequently used. This can save valuable time when disaster strikes. 

Boaters need to prepare themselves for the inevitable; having an efficient toolbox can help deal with problems faster when they arise. Fixing engines, having good light in the middle of nowhere and owning the right tools saved a lot of time more especially lives when sailing in the open seas. 

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Wood Carving as an Art

Wood carving is one of the oldest crafts in the world. This ancient art involves chiseling away wood to create a wood design for the beautiful purpose of artistic expression. The craftsman has to analyze the piece of wood where it is also observed to know the durability of the apparatus. There are different kinds of wood characterize as walnut with dark colors, some basswood has a lighter color like brown, maple, pine and others. 

The art of wood carving

There are also of a variety of chisels and knives as the finest tools for the purpose of shaving, cutting and designing the woods. Chainsaw, drill and other electrical tools can be used to perform the art of wood carving for it is easier to produce the desired design. This can be done with patience, compassion, and love to create a masterpiece of a sculpted wood design. 

The ancient culture of Woodcarving

In all cultures of woodcarving from the ancient age onwards, are the origin of it in typing the art is now commonly created by the artists with all availability and low cost of prices. The most common degradable wood causes are the vulnerability in insects, fungi and being water absorbent that can easily damage. Its only real drawback as a medium for sculpture is its perishability. 

These factors that degrade the wood will cause damage. But there are also alternatives to preserve the art by using the stone, marble and other types of materials made in concrete for monumental crafts. The main type of wood that used to make statuettes, others used in the religious monument and others come from Africa, some are used in the Oceanic art, others are used in American art and aboriginal art in another country especially in Australia.

But in some cases of the original ancient artworks had perished or disappeared. Iron carving in Greece is seen made by many sculptures and then came to Europe among are the gothic art seen in many churches or a big place like cathedrals with a beautiful furniture alongside. Nowadays plastics are now commonly used as an art for its modification stages in the 20th century. 

The difference between wall art

Other types of art are on the wall to make it different and the people have in it so that the production has its great demand in every home. It can be used in the rooms like bathroom, living room, dining room and other areas that are perfectly designed unto it. It can also contribute the good condition of nature and textile in an interior location and every home can choose the different versatility of wall wooden art that everyone can like it.

Different kinds and qualities of wood

There are many kinds and qualities of wood in carving, chip carving and a lot more. Woods are smooth and hard in kind like mahogany, chestnut, ebony, olive, pine, and others may be useful in different kinds of carving. It can have advantages and it can be drawback due to its strength or thinness that would be advantageous than the other materials. 

There will be an example of wood to join together so that it can be used as large art, wood that is very hard is difficult to use but can long last as its advantages. Wood is non-insect proof or waterproof that can affect its durability and it is advisable to use indoor. Woods are remains to its properties and it varies in different directions of use where the grain is the strong one. The sculptor makes it delicately so they will maintain the goodness and durability of the wood.

World famous wood sculptors

Great works of wood art are on display in various museums across the globe. It can be seen in art museums, gardens, and the famous places or in exhibits. Some of it was Shigir Idol in Russia, Rottgen Pieta in lime wood, the Annunciation in the church of St. Lorenz in Nuremberg, Altar of the Virgin in Uberlingen, Mary Magdalene, Bargello, Florence and many more.

Wood sculptures are mostly overlooked, but it can greatly add a statement in a room. In some cases, great wood arts are conversation starters. Today, with the latest technology and pioneering technique, wood art pieces are one of a kind. Wood art maps in great details are now available like the world-renowned Great Five Lakes of Northern America.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Saving Mother Nature in simple ways by Using recycled wood crafts in Interior Design

Everyone likes to have a stylish and well-decorated home, but going green and reducing carbon footprint is a proactive decision to make. When designing your own space, allow products and style to be in harmony with their surroundings. To even lessen carbon footprint, use local materials or buy from retailers which use recycled materials. 

Colors are a great source of inspiration, choose a color to paint the exterior of your house, use the same color palette to paint accents corners and blunt spaces in your home. But what could be even better than to reorganize your home and still save some money? Here are some of the best universal tips from interior designers that don’t go out of style.

Harness natural light as much as possible

Sunlight naturally brightens up home, it also provides health dose of Vitamin D that keeps bad moods at bay. Homes with natural light effortlessly become a happier place to live. As you harness natural light in, you reduce your monthly electrical bill. Choose window curtains of light color and fabric, these will let more sunlight to penetrate your home in a subtle way. 

Make more green spaces

Fill your home with the beauty of nature. There is a lot to choose from the most common edible herb gardens to great blossoming flower pots, choices are limitless. Flowers and shrubs can be easy accents to dull corners of your home. They are also great stress relievers and oxygen bombs which freshen up the air. Plants can also remove most toxic smells in your home and can help to maintain temperature. More designers are making efforts in finding ways to incorporate green spaces into homes. Even in high rise urban areas, vertical gardens are now a common sight. 

Give personal touch – lots of it

One rule of interior design which every expert follows is to provide a personal touch as much as possible. Love the seas? Incorporate some woodcrafts into your living room and put sands or seashells in the decorated glass. Can’t get enough of family photos? Hang your photographs from your recent and most memorable family vacations. For better presentations frame these pictures to add accents. To bring nature in, without too much hassle of maintaining them, fill vases with the colors of the season like autumn leaves, mistletoes, or summer flowers. 

Bring the nature inside

For the past few years, elements of nature are the hottest trends of interior design. Anything that connects with nature either natural wood flooring, marble kitchen counters, bamboo accents, even tiny landscapes at home is a trending design of all time. The idea of green space and nature at home offers a space to de-stress. It’s a readily available organic source of calmness and serenity even in tiny urban spaces. 

Incorporate hints of brass, copper, and wood

Hints of metal accents are a big come back in the last few years. From small brass door accents to elaborate wood and metals wall decorations, there are numerous different choices to pick from. These trends will not fade anytime soon, it’s a fun and most budget-friendly way to spice things up in the house. It will give a more elegant look at a fraction of a cost and a big nod to Mother Nature’s finest works of art.

Functional and Multi-purpose wood pieces

With the minimalistic look on the rise, interior designers are creating functional places in most homes. A wall décor can also be a good work of art as a clock. Or a simple coffee table can be a centerpiece of a conversation starter. When choosing home furnishing, function and style had always dominated the choices. However, with ever changing times, reducing carbon footprint and recycling had been a big thing of the future.

Thinking green

Now more than ever, there’s a call to lessen carbon footprint and incorporating Mother Nature into our homes. Different communities learn to design various home fixtures to have multi-use in most homes. Designers are opting to more sustainable elements of design as much as possible. 

You don’t need fancy and expensive decorations; make use of what really matters – the beauty of nature. Colors of nature make us feel refresh like a paradisal summer vacation, relax like the smell of spring meadows, and long for festive celebrations like the colors of autumn or just stay at home during the coldest of winters. Mother Nature is not just a decoration; it’s the way of life that most of us took for granted. Incorporate that into your home and you would not want to leave it behind. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Off the Beaten Path Destinations in Scotland

Life is basic and boring if you go to the same places and take the same pictures as everyone else. After all, Columbus wouldn’t be Columbus, ‘The Explorer’, if he had stuck to the same journey as everyone else again and again, right?

Beyond the classic cities and landscapes, Scotland can offer so much more. With this 10 wonderful destination alternatives, you can explore the less travelled roads of United Kingdom’s northernmost country and discover the country’s hidden wonders. You can be guaranteed with extreme satisfaction with picturesque villages, ethereal natural beauty, a taste of history with historic buildings, art-filled galleries, as well as excellent local restaurants, just to name a few. 

1. Berwickshire is a must-go for quaint coastal town lovers. 

Traveling to Berwickshire will indeed fulfill your pleasantly-old-fashioned heart. This town, which is nestled in the east of the Tweed Valley Forest Park in the Scottish Borders, is an hour away from Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital. Being a historic county, Berwickshire can offer you a relaxing break from the hectic stress that life and the city offers—there are many great outdoor activities such as diving! While staying here, you can enjoy the beauty of quaint towns and villages, stunning country houses, magnificent birdlife, and beautiful sandy beaches sheltered by high cliffs. Doesn’t that sound remarkable? 

2. Cowal Peninsula

If you love the glistering lake, or lochs as Scottish people would say, and high mountains, why not try the Cowal Peninsula? Surrounded by Loch Long an Long Fyne in the west of Scotland, the Cowal Peninsula in Argyll and Bute is a place where you can find stunning scenery. The northern part of the Cowal Peninsula is surrounded by the Argyll Forest Park. Furthermore, the area is only a little over an hour, by car, away from Glasgow, where you can find the fascinating Highlands. Those who love the outdoors, food, and wildlife buffs will have the time of their lives in this peninsula.

3. Lanarkshire, the land of beautiful scenery and outdoor pursuits.

Although the other places we have mentioned above have spectacular views and outdoor activities, nothing can compare to Lanarkshire. Lanarkshire, also known as the County of Lanark, is a historic county in the central lowlands of Scotland. It is important to note that leaving this place, which is sandwiched between Glasgow and Edinburgh, might be a bit hard to leave. Why? Because Lanarkshire offers an abundance of sights to see and activities to do. A round of gold, fascinating historic buildings, two UNESCO World Heritage sites, what more can you possibly ask for?

4. Love pristine and dramatic scenery? Try the Sutherland and Caithness area.

Who doesn’t love pristine and dramatic scenery that looks like it came out of a movie? The Sutherland and Caithness are some of the isolated and least populated parts of the far north of Scotland. However, they offer great amounts of sensational scenery, wonderful wildlife, rich heritage, high mountains, narrow valleys, seascapes, and landscapes. Your holiday in this remote area of Scotland will offer you so much!

5. The small but abundant Cumbrae.

The Isle of Cumbrae or Great Cumbrae is the larger and most accessible of the two islands known as The Cumbraes in western Scotland. The untainted coastline is popular amongst visitors who especially love water sports, cycling, walking, and nature.

6. Nothing beats peaceful walking in beautiful scenery, so go ahead and try the Angus Countryside and Glens. 

If you are one of the many people who enjoy peaceful strolls while enjoying the scenery around you, then the countryside of Angus, which stretches out from the city of Dundee, is the perfect area for you to witness the lush valleys and soft peaks of the Angus Glens. In these areas, you can find endless miles of twisting small roads and paths, which are perfect for walking, cycling, and just enjoying the great outdoors—there are also towns and smaller villages where you are able to experience serenity and interactions with friendly locals. 

7. What about Dumfriesshire?

If you love rolling hills and sandy beaches, then Dumfriesshire might be the perfect place for you! The hilly area of Dumfriesshire has a generous mixture of landscapes, undisturbed lochs, woodland to a rocky coastline, as well as sandy coves. Dumfriesshire, or the County of Dumfries, is situated along the shore of Solway Firth and is an outdoor lover’s ideal haven.

8. Next on the list, Banffshire!

If you love rugged cliffs and an abundant amount of wildlife, it’s a must to pay a visit to Banffshire. With miles of rocky cliffs, sandy bays, and splendid examples of Georgian architecture, the wonderful corner of northeast Scotland, is full of pure artistry.

9. The Shetland Islands, the wonderful archipelago of Scotland. 

Being made up of more than 100 islands, there’s so much more to the Shetland Islands than meets the eye. Each island possesses and shows off their own stunning sceneries, unique heritage, and special characters. With every island you visit, you’ll get a taste of their wealthy archaeological and historic sites as well as a diverse array of flora and fauna—which are distinct to the isles.

10. With East Lothian, you are guaranteed pretty seaside villages and beaches. 

With East Lothian, known for its picturesque countryside and delightful coastline, you’ll never be bored. Although last in the list, with a range of outdoor activities, over 40 miles of coastline, golden beaches, food, some of the world’s finest golf courses, and award-winning attractions, East Lothian is definitely not the least when it comes to wonderful places to visit in Scotland!

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Things to do in Scotland

Scotland, the land of fabled battlefields, Loch Ness Monster, and blaring bagpipes is one country that hides its charms beyond its wildly romantic mountains. It’s a great destination – one that filled with history, Highland cattle, amazing landscapes, and ghostly castles. Scotland has a lot of charming evergreen lush forests and secluded pristine beaches which makes make Scotland unique.

What so special about Scotland? A typical tour in Scotland includes epic battlefields where clans fought fiercely against the English and literary trails where Sir Walter Scot and Robbie Burns once trotted. There are spectacular remote purple colored moors and untouched forests all waiting to be explored. If these don’t entice you to visit the country of famous skirted knights, then nothing will. Here are some of the best places in Scotland.

Isle of Skye

To start the Scotland adventure, Isle of Skye ranks at the very top of the list among nature lovers. This place boasts of very beautiful mountain scenery, evergreen forests, and mysterious caves. Known as the “Cloud Island”, it’s the largest inner isles in Scotland. The Isle of Skye, by its Viking name “Sküyo” is famous for its heavy mists that often hide the isle, where majestic waterfalls and pristine beaches are all located in this magnificent isle.

The series of clear emerald pools is what makes the Isle of Skye even more attractive to adventure seeker tourists. With just a few miles hike, tourists can continue their adventure into Coire na Creiche which takes them into the majestic Cuillin Mountains without any difficulty. Follow the sign at the forestry car park from Sligachan into Glenbrittle.

The Northern Highlands

Located in the city of Inverness all the way to Thurso, the Northern Highlands rests at the northern peak of the Scottish Mainland. This place has the most scenic view; one can be fully enjoyed through riding a bike or by walking on its many trails. There are many picturesque villages and small towns along its skirts which serve as a quick getaway and resting place for the big hike ahead. The most rewarding view one can get is from the coastal town of Dornoch with its cathedral and castle ruins. Extending from Inverness on the east and crossing over to the Corpach near the western coast of Fort William, tourists can find the ancient fault line which gives birth to the Caledonian Canal.

Edinburgh Castle

Tourists may encounter several castles while in Scotland, but the Edinburgh Castle is not something they should ignore. It’s most popular fortress in the country and played a very vital role during the reign of King David I during the 12th Century. The castle stands as the most prominent national monument in Scotland. Sitting atop of the extinct volcano, Edinburgh Castle has one of the most spectacular views overlooking Princes Street, Holyroodhouse, Royal Mile, and other notable city landmarks.

Its entrance is well guarded by two bronze statues of their national heroes, Robert the Bruce and William Wallace. Both fought viciously and defeated English invaders during the later 13th century until the early 14th century. Tourists are greeted with a grand entrance through a drawbridge which crosses an old moat. The best time to visit the palace is during the month of August when they held the famous Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Ride the Jacobite Steam Train from Fort William to Mallaig

There’s not a single Harry Potter fan in the world that doesn’t recognize this famous Jacobite Steam Train. Aside from its worldwide famous role, the train pass has a lot of very scenic views. The six-hour return journey which starts at Ben Nevis in Fort William, Glenfinnan Viaduct which was featured in the Harry Potter films, to the Morar before arriving in the fishing port of Mallaig, commuters are well treated with beautiful landscapes and majestic sceneries.

Visit Inverness to see Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle

For centuries, the Loch Ness monster sparked controversies and many curious urban legend seekers. Many think of Loch Ness as a mythical monster hiding in deep cold waters of secluded lakes. But there’s no place on earth that does better in telling its story, and something proof of the urban legend than Drumnadrochit Hotel’s Loch Ness Exhibition. Another favorite tourist destination is the ruins of Urquhart Castle. This much-photographed castle sits on top of land overlooking the loch. With its history and mysterious ambiance makes the Inverness a unique attraction in Scotland.

Trossachs National Park

Trossachs National Park is the every anglers dream; plentiful harvests of whitefish, trout, and salmon. Located about 14 miles north of Glasgow, Loch Lomond is considered as Britain’s largest lake. It has the most scenic view for a fisherman, its beautiful mountain slopes and streams will never bore anglers. Many would brave some water activities and hikers love its luscious greeneries.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Things to do in Wales

Everyone that’s been to Wales tells the same exact thing, it’s a beautiful country full of luscious greeneries, fairytales like castles and natural drama. There are a lot of fun outdoor activities – from its sandy beaches to its majestic mountain ranges; Wales is one country that literally goes down in the history of humankind. Its stories had been told in many ancient monuments and museums. The bold and the brave, travel to Wales to find its romantic charm captivating. Castles and different monuments are its biggest attractions, while some go in for a more adventurous journey. Wales is a country full of wonderful natural sceneries. Here are some of the most notable castles and grounds to visit in Wales.

Caernarfon Castle

Built as a military stronghold between 1283 and 1330 and designed by Master James of St. George from Savoy, Caernarfon Castle functions, the Caernarfon Castle was the center of the government and a royal palace. Its ancient walls and tower were extraordinary and remain as one of the most complete and impressive castles in Britain. The charm of the 5th-century architecture of Constantinople in Istanbul still echoes of its color bonded masonry. Its polygonal towers are reminiscent of the ancient tales of the influence of early civilizations.

If only walls can talk, the castle can tell much of its many murder plots of the nobles and known heroes of the ancient times. In 1404, it repelled the army of Owain Glyndŵr's with only 28 men. The castle had endured and resisted three sieges during the English Civil War before succumbing to Cromwell’s army in 1646. With such great history and architecture design, Wales had well preserved its beauty, however, empty it may seem.

The Eagle Tower remains as the best place to start your journey. Its entrance marked with one flagpole to the right and turrets where you can spot the weathered eagle, where it gets its namesake. Inside there are exhibits about Eleanor of Castile and the Welsh version ‘Game of Thrones’. On the other side the castle known as the Queen’s Tower, you will find Regimental Museum of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers with different exhibits showcasing many uniforms, medals, weapons, and other historical displays.

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal World Heritage Site

Thomas Telford, a Georgian engineer built the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct in 1805 to carry the canal over the River Dee. Measuring about 307 meters long, 3.6m wide, 1.7 meters deep and standing at 38 meters high, this engineering marvel of that time is the highest canal aqueduct ever built on the entire UK. Because of its feat, considering the resources and machinery available at that time, it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

During 18th-century horse-drawn canal barge was the main mode of transporting goods but it was soon replaced with the introduction of the railway systems. Telford designed the canal to connect haulage routes between River Dee, Severn and Mersey. With these, he even built Horseshoe Falls to gather water for the canal from the River Dee. It used to carry drinking water from River Dee to the Hurleston Reservoir located in Cheshire. Today, its riverbank is a great place to have a picnic and to rest tired feet from all those walking.

Visiting this vertigo-inducing canal needs a head for heights, as you can walk in its paths for miles free of charge. There are blue-badge guides that offer guided tours near the aqueduct. You can also find canal boat rides which feature trips along the ‘stream in the sky’.

Great Orme Mines

The Great Orme Mines is the largest prehistoric mine ever discovered to date. Located near the top of Great Orme, it has a paved car park for visitors. The place is one of the most recommended places in Wales, wherein the 4,000 years old mine serves as a great important discovery in history. The mines run about 5 miles and were dug for over centuries using only stones and bones in search of copper. There’s a self-guided tour explaining about how rocks turned into copper at the smelting site which can last for about 45 minutes. You can also head further 200 meters down in its 3500-year-old tunnels to learn more about the ancient miners.

St David's Cathedral

Hidden behind high walls, St David's Cathedral is virtually invisible to all. Built within a 6th-century chapel, the cathedral dates from 12th to 14th century and emits an air of antiquity and deep historical importance. The unconventional site was chosen to protect the cathedral from Viking raiders, but it was ransacked more than five times. Weathered and in poor condition, Sir George Gilbert Scott made extensive works to stabilize the building.

Once you entered the wall, the stone walls of the cathedral come into view. Its beauty and atmosphere emit reminiscent of the ancient times. The cathedral has four pointed ethereal purple stone and a rich carving in its 16-century oak ceiling adorned with pendants.

Monday, July 23, 2018

What To Do in Nassau


Nassau is the commercial epicenter of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas with an estimated population of 274,400 as of 2016. It houses almost 70% of the whole Bahamas population. Located on the New Providence island, it stands as the main business district of the country. It as the main stronghold of the fiercest pirates in the world, so the Pirates of the Caribbean aren’t that farfetched after all. The city got its name after the city of Germany, Nassau and in honor of William III of England, Prince of Orange-Nassau. 

During the late 18th century, Nassau population grew when the American Loyalists and their slaves came to the island after the American War of Independence. The influxes of people were so high that it immediately outnumbered its original inhabitants. Today, the city is known to attract millions of tourist worldwide.

With so many things to do and family activities to choose from, it’s really unlikely that the city will bore you. There are several different ways to explore the place, one leading to another great adventure. Here are some of the best fun-filled family activities:

Tour the Rose Island

Many referred the Bahamas Out Islands as Family islands because of the variety of family activities it offered. The laid-back community is a gateway to more exciting destinations. Rose Island is one quick ride onboard a speedboat. It makes for a perfect day trip on the island with pristine white sand, secluded beach area, and great snorkeling spots. 

Climb the Queen's Staircase

Climbing the Queen’s Staircase is, in fact, a must do when in Nassau. Built between 1793 and 1794, it was a grim reminder of slave’s hard labor as they carved the 600-foot-tall Queen's Staircase out of solid limestone. The stairs also provide an entryway to Fort Fincastle, standing on the highest point of New Providence Island in Bennett’s Hill. It was later named to honor Queen Victoria.

Visit the Pirates of Nassau Museum

Nassau has a long and grim history worthy of learning. During the early 18th century, it was once a notorious pirate haven known as the “Republic of Pirate” with hundreds of stories to tell. The museum tells , narrative of the various different pirate history of the entire Caribbean. There are interactive exhibits, dioramas, and good old pirate battles. It’s a good way to spend some time to get to know more of the island’s history.

Dive at Stuart's Cove

Stuart's Cove is a perfect spot to go diving whether you are a beginner or a veteran diver. The place is not too crowded which makes it a perfect place to really enjoy the underwater marvels of Nassau. Veteran divers get a chance to dive with wild sharks while the fewer experienced ones, can still marvel at a safer distance. If you don’t want to have your feet wet, there’s a mini-sub to still see the other side of the world. 

Go to Graycliff to taste their famous chocolate, Cigars, and a lot more

The Garzaroli family developed this hillside place into an amazing tourists spot. The Graycliff Hotel and restaurants cater to almost everyone in the family, from entertainment to rum tastings. It’s a virtual entertainment complex with a very fine chocolatier to make little kids happy and a cigar company for the adults to enjoy. Cigars are specially made on site and rolled by hand which can be paired with rum tastings. There’s a pizzeria that offers great snacks and a Bahamian heritage museum for added information about the place. Before you leave, check out their amazing wide selections of 200,000 bottles of wines. 

Buy the perfect souvenir at Straw Market 

The name “Straw Market” came from slaves who sold local handicrafts to Nassau visitors for hundreds of years, the name however, never left the island. These folks used to peddle weaved bowls using skills they learned from their native land. Since the fire broke down several years ago, the market still continued today at the Nassau Straw Market. But today, they sell more than straw baskets, you can find great wood art carvings, t-shirts, and beaded necklaces, and almost every typical island-themed souvenir there is.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Off the Beaten Path destination in London

Take a tour guided by the Homeless and explore the other side of London

Even if guided tours don’t stoke your fire, then make an exception for this one. This is the most off the beaten path when it comes to touring London. The Londonian charity put up the ‘Unseen Tours’ to help homeless people, and it’s just pure genius. These folks know the unexplored hidden alleyways in London, and you cannot be closer in the usual Londoners life than this. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone; you are learning more of London while helping change the life of your tour guides. There is a different stretch of these tours, one unique than the other. 

Marvel at the Biggest Hindu Temple – out of India that is

This may come to a surprise for some, as London houses the Biggest Hindu Temple located outside of India. The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir was built using traditional materials and method. Also the first traditional stone temple in Europe, the sight was spectacular indeed. Marvel at its very finely carved Italian marbles and Bulgarian limestone. The best time to tour the temple’s ground is during a religious rite and you’ll be surprised how the colors brightly contrast the white temple. The easiest route going to the temple is through the underground Jubilee line for Neasden near Wembley Stadium. Then walk about half an hour from central London and you’ll be there. 

Calling out all Harry Potter heads and visit Davenports Magic 

London is known worldwide because of the Harry Potter films and what would be nicer than to visit a magic school to start your tour in the city. Founded in 1898, its right under the Charing Cross station and well hidden along the busy streets of the city, which adds mystery of the place. They also offer magic workshops and learning a magic trick or two would be really nice to show your friends back home. It’s even hailed as ‘The Real Hogwarts and Home to London Wizards’.

Little Venice

Yup, read that right, London has its very own Little Venice, a salute to the famous Italian city. Enjoy a leisure walk in the morning or late afternoon as the place is quite enjoyable. Home to many pubs, restaurants, and waterside cafes, it does come alive during the hot summer days. Watch Londoners as they board their canal boats and jog along its shores. Top it off with a bit of sightseeing in Regent’s Park or Camden.

The Thames Path

Not really an off the beaten path, Thames Path is home to many hidden gems inside the city of London. The 40-mile long trail comprises of many serene spots waiting to be discovered. Many tourists opt to hire a bike, which for them serves the purpose really well, as they can stop and enjoy a fresh air any moment they like. The path serves as home several public beaches, the village of Rotherhithe and The Prospect of Whitby, one of Charles Dickens’ favorite pubs. 

Dennis Severs' House

Dennis Severs' House is one of the city’s peculiar tourist attractions. Tourists can step inside the artist’s former home that seems to be left untouched since the 18th century. Known as the most original immersive experiences, the house still has an unkempt bed, untouched food, and house left to dust. A trip to this house is not an ordinary walk inside a museum.

A trip inside London’s Container City and Smallest Museum 

Here is a certified not touristy spot and considered a best-kept secret in London, the Docklands area. Over the past few years, it’s becoming a hip and trendy spot for millennials and a must see in London. The Trinity Buoy Wharf is a hidden gem for the artistic and creative minds. It’s also home to the real container city, the smallest museum and the only lighthouse in London. The place is far from the usual glitz and glamour of London’s busy street lights, which makes it a great spot for anyone who really wants to get in touch with their inner creative self.

See the amazing view of the London City – for free

Anything that free is really worth a try, especially in a place like London. You don’t need to get in line and buy yourself that expensive London Eye ticket to get a view of the city. There’s a hidden alternative that offers the same great view and its free! One of the few hidden places to see the entire London city is up to the One New Change shopping mall terrace. The view is so amazing it's even worthy of those postcard-perfect photos. 

When in London – sip a cup of Tea

What a better way to cap your trip in London City than to sip an afternoon tea on top of a classic double-decker bus. Londoners do love their tea, they're famous for it. Although it’s very common to sip tea anywhere in the city, drinking a cuppa on top of a Londonian double-decker bus isn’t. Sip a very relaxing drink while the bus drives around Buckingham Palace and other famous tourist spots in London. It’s something very unusual even for locals’ standards. The tour includes selections of cupcakes, sandwiches, and more sweet pastry to pair with your tea. What a lovely trip it would be.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Best Family Activities in Edinburg


Travel to the country of what Scotland consider as the adventure playground in the west – Edinburg. The city is fast becoming a popular destination for families. Kids would really love to explore its city, wherein the modern world paved the way for nature to seep through in some of the best learning activities in the city. Awaken your inner child and let your kid’s imagination run free in some of the best family attractions in Edinburg.

The Museum Of Childhood

What would be a perfect start for your family vacation other than The Museum of Childhood? It’s the very first of its kind in the world dedicated to the history of children. Located on Royal Mile, the museum houses the best collections of children’s toys throughout the history of mankind. Reminisce your own childhood days viewing some of the most familiar and unique toys from around the world. Let the children learn how ‘the good old days’ keep the children busy even without gadgets. The puppet theater and the dress up area are two of the main highlights in the museum. 

National Museum Of Scotland

Continue to feed your children’s mind with treasures of the past at the National Museum of Scotland. They have wide ranges of collections and fascinating finds that will keep your little ones busy for hours. Expect to know gargantuan facts and figures throughout the history of the earth. With impressive collections and rare artifacts, it’s a great place to learn some of the best cultural heritage of Scotland. They also have Earth in Space Gallery and extensive mammal collections in the world, spending some time here will all be worth it – something that the whole family can cherish. 

After a tiring day of knowing almost all important facts on earth, it’s time to freshen up and spend another day of fun and play. Take your kids away from the comfort of the modern day world and let them spend some time under the sun and where animals roam free. Let them enjoy a full day onboard train rides or go-karts. Situated just a few miles of Dunbar, let your little ones choose their activities from the indoor animal barn, crazy golf, trampolines, hay barns to ball blast arena. Tucked away those gadgets and let them loose while climbing walls, giant fortress, and educational barn. Kids will never run out of ideas in this structured educational place that’s really wildly fun for them. 

Dynamic Earth

Dynamic Earth offers great kid-friendly features like their interactive exhibits, impressive technology, and a 4D experience for everyone. Housed in a mysterious spaceship-esque building, it’s the only place in Scotland that has a full 360-degree film theatre. It offers the amazing tale of planet earth as well as many fascinating facts about Mother Nature. Kids and kids at heart will surely be blown away by its beauty and different exhibits.

Scottish Storytelling Centre

Enjoy one of the oldest art forms in human history – storytelling. There are a number of oral narratives as told by different cultures around the world. The Scottish Storytelling Centre has performed many ‘living art’ throughout the years, so they are the expert of storytelling which everyone in the family loves to see. It's home to Scottish International Storytelling Festival and hosts many cultural programs every year. Visiting Edinburg within the festival will delight anyone who wishes to hear all of the Scottish legendary tales. Some of the most loved stories include Greyfriars Bobby and meet Nessie, the Gruffalo, and Wee Willie Winkie. So expect to pull up a chair and make lots of rooms for cookies and other goodie delights while watching the show. 

Deep Sea World

As your kids filled their imagination with different stories, treat their eyes with the largest underwater tunnel in all of UK at Deep Sea World. Every kid loved to see the real Nemo and Dory at their natural habitat. See the little ones have fun looking at different fish species like angelfish, sharks, piranhas, starfish, and seals. This amazing underwater attraction is located in North Queensferry in Fife. 

Their giant underwater aquarium is filled with multiple themed areas using Scottish seawater from the Firth of Forth providing sea animals with fresh sea water supply. Enjoy this unique aquatic experience which everyone would surely love.

Jenner’s Toy Department

Lastly, when the kids had their educational tour, it’s time to treat them a tour of Jenner’s Toy Department. It’s every kid's heaven filled with buckets of Lego, board games, talking toys, cuddly bears, and action figures. They have departments for toys of the great outdoors like bikes, mini scooter, and hoverboards. Giving them a treat or two would never hurt, but let them wander inside the toy department and see the sparks on their eyes light up.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

11 Must Dos in Skye

Known for its rugged landscapes, picturesque fishing villages, as well as medieval castles, the island of Skye is indeed a good place for visitors to start their journey in Scotland. Whether you only have a day or two to spare, here is a list of must-dos in Skye that will definitely complete and satisfy your holiday. 

The Cuillins 

With rugged mountains located on the southern portion of the Isle of Skye--that can be seen from the road as you drive through the island—the Cuillins offers the best and arduous hikes. If you hike up Bla Bheinn (Blaven) or Sgurr na Stri, you are guaranteed a stunning wide view of the Isle of Skye. On the other hand, you can also climb up Sgurr Alasdair for the highest peak on the Isle of Skye. 

Rubha nam Brathairean

Do you like to put in little effort for bigger outcomes? Brother’s Point is a short hike that leads to the most stunning and ethereal scenery on the Isle of Skye. This is a hidden treasure in which only a few people visit; this makes a better experience for those “in the know”.


Elgol, place located on the southwestern coast of Isle of Skye where not many visitors seem to visit, has spectacular coastal views. You should totally make time to experience the enjoyable day trips from Elgol to Loch Coruisk; you will be greeted with stunning scenery of nature and wildlife. 

Old Man of Storr

Not only does it have such a cool name, Old Man of Storr also has cool picturesque landscapes. In fact, Old Man of Storr is one of the most photograph landscapes on the Isle of Skye. Therefore, this is a place that you do not want to miss. Although it might take a bit of hiking when you reach the top of this hill, you will witness the best scenery—you will not regret it.

Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls

Located just a few kilometers away from Brother’s Point, Kilt Rock offers epic views of the Isle of Skye—a quick stop and a little hike are worth it for the view that this offers. Want to see something cool? When you park on A855 and walk out to the viewpoint, you are able to see Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls as well as Brother’s Point! What about that for killing two birds with one stone? 

Neist Point

The Neist Point Lighthouse, designed by David Alan Stevenson, was first lit in 1909, has been on people’s must-go-to lists in Scotland. When coming to this place near Dunvegan, expect large crowds and an overflowing car park, usually during summer months. However, you can also expect an amazing view from Neist Point, especially at the end of the day during a sunset. 


For those who want to go a little farther on a terrific walk but still see amazing views, a hike on The Quiraing between Staffin and Uig is a must—photographers would enjoy the spectacular landscapes of Scotland as they pass through this hill. 

Dunvegan Castle

Dunvegan Castle, located 1 mile to the north of Dunvegan, is the only existing castle on the Isle of Skye. According to the Dunvegan Castle’s official website, “Dunvegan Castle is one the greatest Hebridean castles and the only one which has been continuously occupied by the same family for 800 years.” If you are one of those people who are big fans of castles, this castle is a good place to tour!

Talisker Distillery

Talisker Distillery is the oldest and only working distillery on the Isle of Skye, founded in 1830 by Hugh and Kenneth MacAskill. A guided tour along with a taste of some award-winning premium whiskey as well as a souvenir sounds great, doesn’t it?

Fairy Glen

Fairy Glen, another spot that is commonly disregarded by visitors, is a miniature landslip that looks like it came straight out of a movie. Although small and an easy hike, it contains the most impressive scenery, and you might even spot a fairy. 

The Fairy Pools

Speaking of fairies, you can take another easy walk to the series of clear, seemingly vibrant blue and green, waters of Fairy Pools waterfalls. Since it only requires an easy stroll, going to the Fairy Pools is perfect for all ages and levels of fitness. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Things not to do when traveling in the UK

Traveling to the UK soon? It’s easy to feel right at home in Britain, where it’s easy to navigate the place, find hotel bookings, cheap recreational activities, and great sights waiting to be discovered. North Americans share a bit of common heritage with Britain. During the height of its empire, Britain ruled about a quarter of the world and they successfully passed on some of their cultures to their colonies. It’s one of the main reason people love going to England and the rest of UK. 

Everyone loves to write itineraries and what they like to visit in Britain, but before heading further west, you might need to take some notes on what not to do. There are some customs in North America that Britain and the rest of the UK find insulting and worse rude. So don’t be a nosy tourist in their country, and make some adjustments with these few reminders:

Don't confuse England with the rest of the United Kingdom

The official and proper name of UK is The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain comprises of three other countries, England, Scotland, and Wales which are all different from one another. It’s not like a state or county, these countries have their own local government, unique ethnic identities, and own rich culture. Nothing annoys people from Scotland or Wales than being called English. If you call someone English who’s definitely from Ireland, you might find yourself in big trouble. It’s always generally safe to ask.

Asking anyone if they know the Queen

The Royals especially the Queen are the biggest attractions in Britain. But don’t assume everyone loves them. Britain may seem small on the map compared to the US, but don’t forget their number is huge. An estimated 60 million people live in the UK and at least 8 million live in Greater London. Asking if they know the Queen is a ridiculous and laughable matter to start a conversation – it will never happen.

The harsh reality is Brits don’t pay much attention to the Royals or to the Queen. It’s not like what you see on the TV. She may appear on the news from time to time, but that’s just it. And it’s a bit entertaining for some, but don’t expect everyone will be jolly good when it comes talking about the Queen.

Don't Block the Escalators

Britain and the rest of the UK are busy people, and well aware of the time. You’ll find them racing up or down the escalator in airports, stores, train station, or the ‘Tube’. For them, walking gets them to their destination faster and more efficient. If you don’t feel like going with the flow, then stand on the right side of the escalator and let the busy traffic past on the left. For them, standing on the left is a social crime, and you’ll hear a lot of grumble by standing on it. Likewise, they love to fall in line that’s why they call it a queue. Jumping in front of the line will also get you in trouble. Don’t let them label you as ignorant and rude tourists in doing so.

Don’t stop or cut lines in front of the carriage entrance

Brits either love or hate their daily commute with the ‘Tube’ or their subway systems, depending on the time of the day. But their ‘Tube’ is the most extensive and efficient public transport systems in the world. That being said, it’s the most popular way of getting around the city; it gets overcrowded, very stuffy and hot. So anything that impedes the locals in getting that dreaded morning commute is having tourists blocking their way. Whatever you do, don’t jump in front of the carriage when there are people lining up to get onboard. This makes it easier for people getting off and boarding the train. It prevents overcrowding when another door remains virtually empty. Make sure of the map, sometimes walking above and on the streets are far better than navigating the labyrinth-like underground systems of Britain. 

Don't underestimate the value of British coins

You could easily get annoyed when you already accumulated a pocket full of coins. But whatever you do, don’t throw them out. Don’t underestimate the value of British coin. Spend them on your daily adventure; they are not just useless coins clanking around in your purse. A single British pound coin is worth at least a dollar and a half. Two-pound coins are worth more than two dollars. So a pocket full of them can buy you a decent snack may be more.