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Best Time to Vacation in Vietnam

Asia’s not so little secret, Vietnam is one of the most beautiful and cheap places to visit. There are definitely better seasons than others, so here is a simple guide to Vietnam.

 

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Asia’s not so little secret, Vietnam is one of the most beautiful and cheap places to visit. Land of exotic beaches, dense and plentiful jungles and vast vistas, Vietnam has it all. With good weather almost all year round, you can visit this Southeast Asian country anytime. Vietnam is a long country ranging from north to south, so the weather can be very different in separate sections. There are definitely better seasons than others, so here is a simple guide to Vietnam.

 

Winter

Visit in the winter to beat the incredible summer heat. Also, you want to check out the Vietnamese New Year, Tet, and the country’s biggest party. The best time to visit is the dry season, ranging from October to March. The wet season can be crazy with typhoons wreaking havoc.   The temps range from 60s to 70s (Fahrenheit) so its great for backpackers and explorers.

Central Vietnam is monsoon season until December, so steer clear until then. No one wants to be wet their entire vacation, unless you are snorkeling. The temperatures will drop into the 60s so make sure you have a light jacket. The warm weather is there by February, so pack a swimsuit.

The southern tip of Vietnam is beach central, so bring sunscreen, SPF 30 or higher. Temps down south will sour to the upper 80s in the winter.

 

Spring

 

March through April in the north is dry and cool, great for venturing into the vast rice patties. Lower humidity makes the jungles accessible..

Central Vietnam is rainy in the spring, so pack a jacket and good shoes. Keep the materials light, as it is humid in the central parts.

You will see locals wearing thin plastic ponchos, which are great. Pick one up for cheap and save you gear from being damp. Down South, the weather is perfect, beach babes galore and beach parties into the night.

Summer

 

Think humidity is fun, try summer in southern Vietnam. You will sweat through any article of clothing, so tank tops, shorts and flip-flops are recommended. May to June is the most consistent weather in the North and Central regions. Rains constantly up north, so steer clear and the central areas are dry as a bone. You can visit the amazing cave systems in this area. Home to the largest caves in the world. Spelunkers unite here to explore and team up for safety.

 

Fall

This is the perfect time to visit all parts of Vietnam. It’s not to dry and not to wet, you get a little of everything in the fall.

Check out the Mid-Autumn Festival where thousands of lanterns are released into the air and paper lions dance in the streets. Best time to eat traditional Vietnamese food is at this festival.. dates change every year so check that out when planning.

 

Vietnam has a little something for everyone. The weather changes a lot so map out your trip accordingly. The food is incredible, people are all so nice and the scenery is exquisite.

 

Photos courtesy of ap.org, beautiful, vivid, travel and living

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Destinations

Best Architecture in the US by City

America is a country full of history and its cities show some serious architectural range. These 10 cities have awesome and unique architectural styles throughout them and have some pretty special buildings that should be visited. I compiled a list of cities in the US that have very unique architectural styles and interesting buildings.

 

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America is a country full of history and its cities show some serious architecture range. These 10 cities have awesome and unique architectural styles throughout them and have some pretty special buildings that should be visited. I compiled a list of cities in the US that have very unique architectural styles and interesting buildings.

 

Norfolk, VA

Norfolk Virginia is a port city that has been around since the 1600s. Neighborhoods with fancy and ornate plantation style estates are surrounded by dense city centers.   Very interesting row houses are typical here showing their rich history and beauty. Come for the near by Virginia Beach boardwalk and stay for the very inspiring Scope Arena. Hosting bands like the Grateful Dead and The Rolling Stones, the arena is stylish and futuristic looking.   Side note, the arena is built on a marsh and is slowly sinking at an average of 5 centimeters a year.

 

Las Vegas, NV

What is this “city” doing on this list? Well, Vegas is special because it has every style thrown together in a hodge-podge on the famous strip. Casinos are awesome and grandiose if they are anything. The newer buildings are so epic that even purists enjoy them.

 

Pittsburgh, PA

For a region that is so ruggedly beautiful the Steel city’s architecture actually matches the surrounding area pretty well. The downtown high-rises are spectacular and the Victorian homes on the North Side are eloquent. With tons of scenic vistas, the city has an excellent cityscape and skyline that’s pretty impressive.

 

Philadelphia, PA

The other side of the state of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia is known for eclectic styles and American history. From the Liberty Bell to Constitution Hall, Philly is full of Colonial American style. Check out Loews Hotel for an awesome architectural hotel.

 

New Orleans, LA

If it were up to just me, I’d put New Orleans at the top of the list. The Cajon city has so much rich history with French, Spanish, Creole, Caribbean and European influences. The French quarter may be the most popular among tourist but it’s the stereotypical shotgun homes Victorian mansions that really shine.

 

Charleston, SC

Populated by church steeples and classic row houses, Charleston is not your stereotypical architectural city. The downtown area is walk able and a dream for fans of cobblestone streets and a distinctly European feel.

 

Providence, RI

All you have to do is head to College Hill and hang around Brown University. The school has a rich history and beautiful buildings. With a mix of revolutionary war era homes to cape cod bungalows, Providence has plenty to look at.

 

Chicago, IL

After the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Chicago had to switch from wood to metal. Gone were the stereotypical wooden row houses and replaced by huge steel behemoths. Chicago has an impressive skyline with so many tall skyscrapers. The bridges that cross the Chicago River are the real stars. You have so many drawbridges in the downtown areas that bridge fans can spend weeks here.

 

Savannah, GA

Come to Savannah for the perfectly maintained and preserved downtown neighborhoods. Houses look exactly like they did 200 years ago and are restored with amazing accuracy.

 

Buffalo, NY

The number one city on our list is Buffalo New York. The birthplace of American Architecture and Frank Lloyd Wright, Buffalo is a dream. Filled with beautiful old school architecture mixed with incredible forward thinking modern designs.

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Destinations

New Banksy Hotel Opens in West Bank

International street artist and controversial figure Banksy has struck again, and this time it’s in the West Bank.   The Artist Banksy secretly opened up a nine-room Palestinian guesthouse/hotel in Bethlehem last weekend. The hotel has a catchy name too, The Walled Off Hotel.

The street art filled hotel is set to open on March 11, and is open to journalists now. Rooms are available for $30 a night, so it’s quite affordable. The hotel is situated right next to the West Bank separation barrier built by Israel to fend off Palestinian attacks. The views from the hotel are of the wall and that’s it.

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International street artist and controversial figure Banksy has struck again, and this time it’s in the West Bank.   The Artist Banksy secretly opened up a nine-room Palestinian guesthouse/hotel in Bethlehem last weekend. The hotel has a catchy name too, The Walled Off Hotel.

The street art filled hotel is set to open on March 11, and is open to journalists now. Rooms are available for $30 a night, so it’s quite affordable. The hotel is situated right next to the West Bank separation barrier built by Israel to fend off Palestinian attacks. The views from the hotel are of the wall and that’s it.

Each room features the stereotypical satirical artwork from acclaimed artist Banksy.

Reporters got a sneak peak this week and took pictures of the artwork. The stand out was from room ‘Three” called the Banksy Room, had a giant mural of a Palestinian and an Israeli having a pillow fight.

This isn’t Banksy’s first trip to the area, last year satirical artwork sprung up all over the Gaza Strip. Banksy claimed responsibility for these graffiti attacks. Politically charged art has fueled Banksy’s success and has turned street art into an expensive art form.

The small boutique style hotel has a presidential suite and a museum displaying many of the artist’s more politically charged work. The museum looks like an old gentleman’s club from colonial times. It has a life-sized statue of Arthur James Balfour in it who created the Balfour declaration, which led to the creation of an Israeli state.

The secret project took 14 months to complete and was supervised by the mysterious artist himself. This hotel is the artist’s biggest collection of work in years and has no end date as of yet.

Banksy has been putting up politically charged street art here and in the nearby Gaza Strip. Known for satirical stencil art, Banksy has long been a thorn in the status quo. From humble beginnings in London, Banksy has become a worldwide phenomenon.
So, who’s coming to Bethlehem with me to stay at the Walled Off Hotel and see this amazing street art in person? I’ll pay for the hotel, just saying, I think I can afford the $30 a night price tag.

Already accepting reservations, the hotel will surely book up fast; let’s just hope the conflict doesn’t take this hotel as a victim.

The artist has recently dropped pieces in the area on a two-story building that was destroyed in a battle between the Israeli forces and Palestinian people. Children are living through this never-ending conflict and at least now they have some attention brought to them that isn’t negative. I can’t even imagine growing up in these types of situations and I feel for any child who has to deal with that. Unfortunately these kids have no choice as to where they are raised but Banksy sees that and is making it’s a cause we can all get behind.

Check out this awesome art experiment and support artists like Banksy who see an issue and is doing something about it.

Keep fighting the good fight y’all.

 

 

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Destinations

Tourist Experiences Bad Luck, Returns Pompeii Artifacts

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A Canadian woman returned Pompeii artifacts, 15 years after they were stolen from the Pompeii site.

Prof. Massimo Ossana, the Archeological Park of Pompeii’s temporary director released a statement last Tuesday confirming the return of five stolen artifacts that were sent back via a travel agency. The said agency, then, contacted the Carabinieri police regarding the matter.

The artifacts, which were accompanied by a letter, were brought back to the archeological park. However, they cannot be returned to their specific, original spots within Pompeii’s old ruins. “Obviously they cannot be relocated because their precise origin is not known,” Osanna shared.

According to The Guardian and CNN, the Canadian tourist’s missive narrated her experiences of bad luck right after she took the Pompeii artifacts back in 2005. She mentioned that she went through financial and health problems because of them. “We are good people and I don’t want to pass this curse on to my family,” the woman explained.

In relation to the incident, Ossana mentioned that stolen artifacts get frequently sent back to the archeological park that features the ruins of an ancient Roman city that got destroyed by the violent eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. Many of these items are returned due to the same reason—that the artifacts are accompanied by a curse, bestowing ill luck to those who take them from their resting place.

“For several years, the Archaeological Park of Pompeii has been receiving letters from visitors who, on the occasion of their visit, had taken small objects (we are talking about mosaic tiles, small shards, stones, pieces of plaster, lapilli), of little value, but part of unique archaeological heritage, and that they decided after years to return, claiming to have derived only bad luck from that act,” the Archeological Park of Pompeii’s statement said.

Consequently, the statement also mentioned that the supposed curse that accompanies the artifacts found at the park serves as an effective deterrent for anyone who wishes to take or steal other Pompeii items in the future. “But we hope that an international civil awareness towards cultural heritage in general will increase, regardless of the fear of a bad luck that could affect those who make such gestures,” Osanna continued.

Stealing items from famous archaeological sites and tourist destinations is a rampant activity. However, visitors to these heritage areas must be aware of the necessity to preserve these artifacts because they serve as actual, historical objects that provide current and future generations with the means to understand how our ancestors lived in the past. Preserved artifacts are living testaments to the people who came before us, offering us a glimpse into their lives—how they lived, how they interacted with one another, and how they died.

Knowing what happened in the past—how people survived in the past—provides us with the necessary knowledge to improve our present lives and the lives of future generations. Hence, it is essential for everyone to preserve these archaeological and historical sites—and understand the significance of their continued presence in our modern existence.

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