Places to Go Parasailing

Parasailing is an adventurous, fun-filled pursuit, primarily performed in a recreational manner. Though competitions do exist, it is essentially a joyride, taken solely to enjoy the vistas on offer from high up. Obviously, the best destinations to explore parasailing as an adventure sport are seaside towns, which will offer you a bird’s-eye view of the coastal settlements as you are whisked along on a wave of excitement. The more attractive the vista, the more pleasurable the experience.

Keeping that in mind, here are some stunning places where parasailing is a much-desired activity.

Best Parasailing Destinations in the World

  • Miami
  • Key West
  • Copacabana
  • Cape Town
  • GoaSydney Harbor
  • Kerala Backwaters
  • Great Lakes
  • Hawaii
  • Phuket

Miami

The state of Florida is home to countless fantastic parasailing destinations, but Miami takes the cake thanks to its beautiful skyline. Enjoy the view of the famous skyline used in several movies and TV shows, as you float at a height of 400 feet. There are several parasailing facilities in Miami, including one near the Miami Seaquarium, one on Dodge Island, and several in Miami Beach.

Key West

Another of Florida’s parasailing hotspots, Key West, just like Miami, offers stunning views of the sea and the cityscape. Smathers Beach and the Key West Bight, situated on the southern and northern coasts of Key West, respectively, are the best destinations for parasailing enthusiasts. Tandem trips cost from USD 29 to USD 49 according to the time of the day; the rates are the lowest in the morning. For a fun day out at the beach, Key West is the perfect destination!

Copacabana

Rio de Janeiro’s iconic beach offers a view of some wildly popular places from some wild angles. You can see the Sugarloaf Mountain, the statue of Christ the Redeemer, and even catch a glimpse of the Maracanã stadium. The colorful view of Rio is really worth every cent.

Cape Town

Cape Town is primarily renowned for its paragliding opportunities from Table Mountain, but parasailing in its neighboring waters is equally thrilling. Cape Town’s astounding cityscape and mountainous, yet coastal, location combine to provide a splendid view from high above. Three Anchor Bay in Cape Town’s western region is the prime location for parasailing trips, and solo and tandem trips will cost you approx. USD 50 and USD 60, respectively.

Goa

Probably the most well-known Indian tourist hotspot after the Taj Mahal, Goa’s stunning beaches and nightlife attracts thousands of foreign and domestic visitors. Its beaches, such as Calangute, Baga, and Anjuna, are excellent places to parasail, and Goa’s charming and eloquent towns are excellent places to relax and explore. Parasailing here, would cost around USD 25, usually even lower than that.

Sydney Harbor

Who can resist the temptation of seeing the famous Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge from1above? Seeing these two buildings is amazing enough at ground level, but from 400-500 feet up―mindblowing! Parasailing avenues are open at Manly Wharf, in Manly Cove, at prices starting from AUD 65 if you are going in a group of 8 or more. Solo trips cost about AUD 95.

Kerala

Termed as “God’s Own Country” due to its astounding natural beauty, Kerala is home to several aquatic activities. Kovalam and Alappuzha are the main centers of parasailing, with the depreciation of the Indian Rupee allowing foreign nationals to enjoy this activity for as little as USD 30-40.

Great Lakes

No, you won’t actually be seeing the lakes from that high up, but the Great Lakes have always been a famous tourist attraction, and make for fantastic parasailing vacation spots. Throw in a drive through scenic Michigan or Wisconsin, and you have something that nobody would want to miss. Almost every lakeside city in these two states has parasailing facilities. Mackinaw City is arguably the best bet, with parasailing trips held on the eastern lake shore of the City for about USD 70 for solo trips.

Hawaii

The archipelago of Hawaii is probably the most famous beach destination in the world, and for good reason. It is a veritable treasure trove of scenic locations, crystal-clear waters, and fantastic beaches. It is a great hub of various aquatic activities. Most islands have this facility, but the ones on the Big Island, Honolulu, and Maui are particularly popular. But having soared the heights, don’t forget to plumb the depths and go diving right afterwards!

Phuket

One of the recently popularized seaside vacation hotspots, Phuket is perfect for the weary traveler looking to relax and the water-loving thrill seeker looking to conquer the clear, blue waters. Parasailing is, surprisingly, not that popular here, but there are numerous options for those who want to try it. Patong Beach is the best bet, with rides costing between USD 25-40.

Tips to Plan a Perfect African Safari for True Adventure

Whether you are a hardcore wildlife enthusiast, an adventure freak, or just a spirited traveler, going on an African safari will surely occupy a prominent position on your travel wish list. And why not? There is probably no other place on earth where there is a concentration of so many different species of exotic animals. With numerous national parks distributed all across the continent, an African safari is truly a memorable, once-in-a-lifetime experience that’s worth cherishing. What makes these safaris even more unparalleled is the fact that in terms of experience and adventure, no two of them seem to be the same.

Planning an African Safari

If you love wildlife, enjoy visiting adventurous locations, and wish to embark on an African adventure in the near future, this Buzzle article will tell how you can plan your trip for a truly enchanting experience. Here are a few factors, which you will need to consider while planning your African safari vacation.

◾ Do research on what the African safari can offer you. For this, the Internet is the best source; however, you can also refer to certain magazines, such as National Geographic Traveler to get an idea of where you can go and what you can expect. In case you know people who have already been to an African safari, it would be a great idea to ask them about their trip and experiences.

◾ Decide on what you want to see and/or do. Africa has innumerable options to offer to tourists, and many tour operators design customized safaris depending on the preferences of their clients. So, think about what kind of activity you would most like to participate in and accordingly, make a list of things you would like to see and do during your vacation. This will help explain your point of view more clearly to your tour operator.

◾ Prepare a rough itinerary. As mentioned above, Africa has innumerable options for tourists, and every safari is different from the other. Every region in the continent offers you a unique set of things to do and hence, once you have decided what exactly you want out of your trip, it will become easier for you to list out places, which will offer you that kind of experience. You can then communicate regarding the same with your tour operator, and get a customized safari, or join a group with similar interests.

◾ Proper timing is important. Deciding on when to go on a safari is crucial in order to get the kind of experience you are looking for. For instance, if you are aiming to spot hundreds and thousands of animals migrating, you can head to Kenya between June and August, which is the season for wildebeest migration. Similarly, if you are interested in game drives, it is advisable to plan a safari in winter, when there is limited vegetation in the grasslands and it is much easier to spot the animals. Your tour operator may help you with this, but it is advised that you do a bit of research on your own as well.

◾ Choose the type of accommodation you want to stay in. This you need to do, especially in terms of luxury. Africa is renowned the world over for its 5-star luxury camping that has all the amenities required for a lavish holiday. However, if you are looking for a budget vacation (for which there are plenty of options as well), you will first need to do some research and then set a “flexible” budget for the same. Please note that while booking a cheaper accommodation, you will also need to inquire how safe a particular facility is. But if it is a tour operator that you’re going through, your accommodation will be taken care of.

◾ Determine the duration of your stay. This is another major factor you need to consider while planning your safari. Some operators offer short, but focused adventures, which may last for about eight to ten days. However, there are also longer excursions that extend up to even three months, wherein you can get a more in-depth experience. So, if you have a good budget and a little flexibility with regards to your vacation days, it is advisable to take one of the longer safaris, as it won’t be possible to travel to Africa again and again, especially owing to high airfares. So, see to it that you make the most of your vacation while you are there!

◾ Ascertain how you wish to commute from one point to another. Sometimes, two places mentioned in your itinerary may be miles and miles away from each other. More often than not, there are two ways to commute from one point to the other, viz., land transfers and air transfers, and both have their own advantages and disadvantages. Although flying from one point to the other is expensive, you get to save on a lot of time. On the other hand, land transfers involve traveling for hours together in a car across many miles of uninhabited wild terrain, thus, adding a lot more transit time. However, land transfers are more cost-effective; in that you have numerous opportunities for game viewing. So, according to the time at your disposal, decide the way you want to travel and estimate your budget accordingly.

◾ Traveling with kids can be fun too. A large number of tour operators specialize in providing kid-friendly itineraries and accommodations. Some activities can be specially designed for kids to ensure their active participation in the safari. Hence, while you are planning your safari, it is important to take into consideration the likes and preferences of all those who will be accompanying you so that everyone enjoys the adventure to the fullest.

◾ Choose an appropriate tour operator. After you have researched well and listed down your preferences regarding the things mentioned above, it is now time to look for a suitable tour operator. The Internet is, by far, the best source for this, but you can also refer to travel books, magazines, and your friends and colleagues. Shortlist those who you think are best suited for your needs, and then speak to them personally. Ask them a lot of questions, and get all your doubts cleared. Most importantly, ask them about the overall price of the package―whether it is all-inclusive, if it includes flight tickets and internal transfers, whether it includes meals, etc. You can then pick the one that best suits your style of travel and budget.

Having done all this, you are finally all set to embark on your adventurous journey. Your tour operator will give a list of the items to carry during your trip. Make sure that you have packed each and every one of them. Your tour operator will also advise you on the various immunizations that you will need to take before you go to Africa. Take them at least a few weeks in advance. So, get going, enjoy the adventure, and stay safe!

Best Surfing Spots in the World Tips

Did You Know?
Corona del Mar, California, is the place where the first ever official surfing competition was held in, 1928.
Surfing is a very popular adventure sport. It needs lots of practice and patience to perfect the art of surfing. There are two types of surfing: short boarding and long boarding. Short boarding is considered to be more difficult, as it needs more effort to maneuver the surfboard.

Surfing originated some three to four thousand years back in Western Polynesia, and has evolved a lot since then. It was first brought to California by George Freeth.

Surfing is a year-round sport and not just a summer activity. If you are one of those who has adrenaline rushing at the thought of riding the waves, then you are at the right place. Here, we have complied a list of the top ten surfing spots in the world. Grab your surfing board, pack your wet-suit, and get ready to hit the shores.
Best Surfing Beaches in the World
Note: As with any top ten list, it is impossible to list the top ten surfing spots without missing out on a few names. The ones listed here are as per the author’s choice, and in no particular order.
Jeffreys Bay, South Africa

Best Time to Surf
May – September

Level
All Levels
Famous for its Supertubes, Jeffreys Bay is a very popular destination among surfers. The surfing area is divided into several sections, and has areas for beginners and seasoned professionals, alike. It is also home to the Billabong Pro surfing tournament, that brings many enthusiastic surfers from around the world to its shores.
Gold Coast, Australia

Best Time to Surf
January – April

Level
All Levels
This is one of the most amazing surfing destinations around, and is often referred to as ‘surfer’s paradise’. Gold Coast has a stretch of 35 kilometers of area to choose from, and has something for surfers of all skill levels.
North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

Best Time to Surf
November – February

Level
Expert
Regarded as the Mecca of surfing, this is the go-to destination for pros. North Shore provides the most challenging surf, so if you have to prove yourself, it is the place you should head to. If you are a beginner, schedule your trip for the summer months when the waves are gentler and smaller, and if you are looking to catch some giant waves, head there during the winter.
Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia

Best Time to Surf
April – October

Level
All Levels
One of the most exotic surfing destinations in Indonesia, Uluwatu can get very busy and crowded in the peak season. There are four different sections to surf on, and it offers something to surfers of all skill levels.
Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain

Best Time to Surf
November – February

Level
All Levels
It is the closest thing to Hawaii on this side of the globe. For a beginner, the best time to go is April to August when the swells are not that huge – ideal to learn the tricks of surfing.
Bundoran, Ireland

Best Time to Surf
September – May

Level
All Levels
In recent times, Bundoran has become a favorite destination for experienced and beginner surfers alike in Europe. Riding the waves in the chilly waters of the Atlantic doesn’t deter the die-hard surfing fanatics. Surely, it is not everyone’s cup of tea though.
Puerto Escondido, Mexico

Best Time to Surf
September – May

Level
Intermediate and Expert
This beach has the reputation of being one of the heaviest beach breaks of the world. It is advisable for beginners to stay away, as waves are usually head high and can snap boards easily. It is often referred to as the Mexican pipeline.
Teahupo’o, Tahiti

Best Time to Surf
April – October

Level
Expert
Known for the surf break, heavy and glassy waves, Teahupo’o is known for some of the heaviest waves in the world. Only those surfers in their physical best should attempt to ride the waves here.
Mentawai Islands, Indonesia

Best Time to Surf
April – October

Level
All Levels
Mentawai Islands in Indonesia is another dream destination for surfing enthusiasts. The bay around the 70 islands that comprises Mentawai Islands faces the constant fury of the Indian ocean. There is a constant surge of waves, which makes this a surfer’s paradise.
Hossegor, France

Best Time to Surf
September – October

Level
All Levels
Dubbed as the surfing capital of Europe, Hossegor attracts surfers from all around the world. The giant Atlantic waves constantly pound this French shore, making it an ideal and favorite spot for surfing. And yes, beginners and experts, both will enjoy here.
Here are a few more spots which are worth a mention.

  • Tavarua Island, Fiji
  • Raglan Beach, New Zealand
  • The Soup Bowl, Barbados
  • San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua
  • Rincón, Puerto Rico
  • Playa Grande, Costa Rica
  • Huntington Beach, California
  • Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia
  • Mavericks, California
  • Lima, Peru
  • Fuerteventura, Spain
  • Nazaré, Portugal
  • Santa Catarina, Brazil
  • Jaws Maui, Hawaii

These were some of the most popular and famous surfing spots around the world. Which one is your favorite? Do let us know. Enjoy surfing!

Tips to Equipment Used for Canyoneering

unduhan-1Canyoning, or canyoneering, is the activity of traveling in canyons using a variety of techniques that may include walking, scrambling, climbing, jumping, abseiling, and swimming. Regardless of the duration or complexity of a canyoneering trip, carrying a good selection of gear is absolutely essential, including clothing and abseiling equipment.

Did You Know?

Contrary to popular belief, canyoneering was not invented by alpine mountain climbers. The original canyoneers were Australian bushwalkers who started this activity in their quest to safely navigate through the rugged wilderness of the Australian outback.
Canyoneering Equipment (Clothing/Apparel)

Canyoneering Shoes
Due to the wet and slippery environment in most canyons, a good pair of shoes is essential. While some canyoneers use soft-soled sneakers, you can also opt for specialist canyoneering shoes if you are serious about the sport. They provide exceptional grip and keep the feet largely dry.

Alternatives for Canyoneering Shoes
You can also use dive shoes/wetsuit booties for canyoneering. Since this is a rough sport, never use shoes which can spoil easily or those which use Velcro straps, as fine sand tends to make them ineffective. Also, never use sandals as they prove ineffective in wet conditions.

Canyoneering Socks
A good pair of socks are almost as important as canyoneering shoes. They keep you warm, prevent blisters, and protect your feet from the sand. Wool, neoprene, or thermal socks are ideal for canyoneering, but you should avoid cotton ones as they take away body heat when wet.

Wetsuit
If a canyon route is very wet and filled with pools of water, wetsuits can provide thermal insulation, abrasion resistance, and buoyancy. Drysuits, on the other hand, will keep you completely dry and require less space to store. However, the major problem with drysuits is that they wear out very fast. If the canyon is dry, thermal clothing will suffice. Alternatively, you can try a combination of the three, experimenting to find out what works best for you.

Canyoneer Clothing
Canyons are very harsh on clothing, so tough synthetic clothes are the best option (avoid cotton). Always make it a point to carry an extra pair of dry clothes along, in case you have to swim or abseil down a waterfall. This is especially important on a multiple-day trip. In cold weather, a fleece jacket can be a great addition to your kit.

Canyoneering Backpack
With the large amount of gear that is needed for canyoneering, a good backpack is a must to carry it all. If you are serious about the sport, invest in a specialist canyoning pack made from vinyl or Cordura, with good drainage. Ensure that your bag has chest and hip straps along with haul loops, which will make it easy for you to move around the rough wilderness.

Light Raincoat
Carrying a lightweight raincoat is not only useful to tackle rainy weather but is also an effective method of keeping oneself warm in wet or windy canyons. Make sure that the raincoat is made of a durable material that can withstand the rough conditions of canyoning.
Abseiling Gear

Climbing Harness
Harnesses are indispensable in technical canyons, as they keep you secured to the ropes while abseiling, and hold a number of tools that you may need. Any kind of climbing harness will work well for basic canyoneering. However, while harnesses with padding provide comfort, those without padding don’t absorb water, and are cheaper, sturdier, and easier to maintain.

In-Line Descender
Many canyoneers consider descenders to be the most important part of their kit. These equipment come in many varieties, but in-line devices are highly recommended as you can release yourself from the rope without removing the device from the carabiner.

Carabiners
One can use the old-fashioned, heavy steel carabiners, or opt for lighter, aluminum or alloy carabiners, which are usually just as strong. It is important to check for appropriately rated carabiners before purchase, and check regularly for wear and tear.

Climbing Ropes
Although dynamic climbing ropes are suitable for canyoneering, static ropes are preferred, because the limited stretch reduces wear and tear, and makes rope retrieval easier. Always prefer those which are water repellent, having a sheath thickness between 8.5 and 10mm. Extra coils of rope are always useful, especially in case of an emergency.

Climbing Gloves
While gloves are not mandatory, they make abseiling much more comfortable, especially if the ropes are dry or sandy. Leather or specialist abseiling gloves will protect your hands from the rough canyon terrain effectively.

Climbing Helmet
This is a very essential piece of safety equipment as it can prevent head injuries from falling rocks or other accidents in the wet, slippery canyon environment. Make sure that your helmet is rated properly, and it is equipped with drainage holes. Although not recommended, bike helmets can be used occasionally.

Army Knife
While abseiling, one may have to cut through new or worn slings, for which a knife will be handy. It can also be useful in situations where your hair or apparel gets stuck in a descender, or you have to cut yourself free from a rope in case of an emergency. (Be careful while using knives near loaded ropes, as they are surprisingly easy to cut.)

Safety Slings
It is important to have at least a 1-meter long safety line, along with a carabiner, which will help in clipping yourself to an anchor while waiting in an exposed area or while rigging ropes. Nylon safety slings are highly recommended as they have multiple uses.

Safety Whistle
Very useful for communication when canyoning in a group, especially in places where loud waterfalls or drops can obscure voices. Ideally, use a whistle which has no moving parts as the balls inside the whistles tend to expand/contract on contact with moisture, thus affecting their efficiency.

Maillons
Similar to carabiners in appearance, these rated steel links can be used while building an anchor. As they provide less friction and last long, they are ideal for canyoneers who abseil on single ropes, by providing carabiner blocks a fixed point to rest against.

Tape Slings
Tape slings are commonly used by canyoneers to build anchors, and replace old, worn slings from existing anchors. Since they are largely inexpensive, they are often bought and used in bulk.

It is important for all canyoneers to know how to make and use prusik loops, as they allow ropes to be used for a safe ascent, and are also used as part of a self-belay system. Canyoneers may also use specialist ascenders, but they are usually more costly, heavy, and bulky.
Miscellaneous Canyoneering Gear

Microfiber Towels
These small, lightweight towels are great for drying off after a wet day, or to keep your equipment dry. They also come in handy in case of injuries, to stanch blood from a flowing wound.
Swimming goggles, although not essential, can come in handy to retrieve any unsecured, non-floating item that you might mistakenly drop in a deep pool.

In a sport like canyoneering, getting yourself and your gear wet is nearly unavoidable, which is bad for things like the first-aid kit. Therefore, waterproof dry bags are commonly used to keep items dry. But since these bags are not completely fail-proof, plastic kegs are also available, which are costlier and bulkier, but much more reliable.

Camping Equipment
Needed especially for multiple-day canyoneering trips, camping equipment including mats, ground sheets, sleeping bags, and fly tents are essential. In warm weather, merely a sleeping bag should be enough. Make sure to store all this equipment in a dry bag.

A basic first-aid kit including assorted bandages, thermal blanket, water-purifying tablets, painkillers, anti-inflammatory tablets, Imodium, matches/lighter, disposable gloves, sunscreen, chapstick, insect repellent, etc., is ideal for canyoneering trips. This can help in case of cuts, fractures, sprains, hypothermia, snakebites, etc. Adding a personal locator beacon to the kit is not a bad idea so that rescues during emergencies are performed quickly.

Cooking Equipment
If you want warm food, or if you are on a multiple-day canyoneering trip, carrying items such as a gas cylinder, stove, matches, cooking pot, pot holder, and cutlery is a good idea. Do not use open fires on the ground as canyons are naturally sensitive and scar easily.

Head Torch
Make sure that you carry a good waterproof head-torch with an extra set of batteries. This will not only help you to move through dark tunnel sections in a canyon, but also help around the campsite after dark.
Carrying an appropriate amount of food and water is absolutely essential on any canyoneering trip as reliable sources may not be available in the wild. Food and water will not only provide energy, but will also help in keeping hypothermia and dehydration at bay.

Navigation Tools
You must always carry a compass and an updated map of the area you are canyoning in, along with track notes and guide books. All members should learn how to use these tools, and a group should carry at least two sets of maps, which will be useful in case one gets lost or damaged.