Archive for the Adventure Tours Category

Exploring The Arts In Puerto Vallarta

While most tourists visit Puerto Vallarta to experience the beaches, resorts and unmatched natural beauty, there is a more creative allure just beneath the surface. Though Puerto Vallarta is far from a sprawling city, the community houses more galleries than any Mexican destination outside the capital. Throughout the years, artists and aficionados have flocked to the majestic landscape of Puerto Vallarta. The results can be seen throughout the galleries of the city – in everything from painting, sculpture and ceramics to jewelry, literature and fashion. Yet, even if you don’t step inside any of Puerto Vallarta’s galleries, you will still find yourself surrounded by art – courtesy of public sculptures throughout the city and the paintings lining the walls of local restaurants. Regardless of where you set foot in this gorgeous city, you are sure to be overwhelmed by the powerful creative spirit.

Inside the galleries of Puerto Vallarta, you will find everything from folk art to the most challenging contemporary compositions of the region’s vibrant art scene. One of the most well-known galleries is the Galeria Arte Latinoamericano – a two-story collection of Puerto Vallarta’s finest painters and sculptors. Another great destination for locally produced work is Galeria Dante. Featuring more than 50 artists from the Puerto Vallarta community, this gallery has been awarded top honors in numerous publications.

While there is a strong focus on locally produced artwork in Puerto Vallarta, don’t be surprised to find some famous names on the walls. For instance, Galeria Omar Alonso has displayed works by documentary photographer Sebastiao Salgado and European artists such as Wouter Deruytter and Michal Macku. Galeria Corsica – a popular destination for collectors – features artists championed by Mexico City’s Museum of Modern Art. The Galerie des Artistes – a space known for its many rooms of unique pieces – has also been known to exhibit works by Diego Rivera and Jose Clemente Orozco.

One of the most celebrated art forms of Mexico is Mata Ortiz pottery, an elegant craft on display in a pair of galleries. Both Galeria Mata Ortiz and Galeria de Ollas feature some of the best ceramic work you will find anywhere in the world. You can also find traditional work produced by the Huichol – a tribe residing in the mountains outside Puerto Vallarta – at Galeria Piramide. Not only will you be able to see incredible examples of traditional bead and woven art, you can witness these indigenous artisans working at the gallery.

One of the most popular events in Puerto Vallarta is the Old Town Art Walk that takes place each Wednesday during the tourism season – generally October to April. On these special evenings, you will find at least 17 galleries open late to display everything from the newest work of local artists to treasured paintings by Old Masters. You can enjoy this self-guided walking tour at your own pace with the assistance of detailed maps available at any of the galleries or your resort. The Old Town is also a great place to dine, but make sure to save some room for complimentary hors d’oeuvres and cocktails.

No visit to Puerto Vallarta is complete without a stroll down the city’s famed boardwalk – the Malecon. Besides offering a beautiful view of Banderas Bay, the Malecon serves as an outdoor sculpture museum. Beginning at the north end of the boardwalk, you will encounter Mathis Lidice’s “Los Milenios” – one of the most photographed sites in Puerto Vallarta. Tourists are also known to gather around the “Rotonda del Mar,” a unique assemblage of chairs by local artist Alejandro Colunga. If you want to learn more about the sculptures of the Malecon or the artists behind them, don’t miss the Tuesday morning tour offered by Gary Thompson – owner of the Galleria Pacifico. Ramiz Barquet – one of the city’s most celebrated artists – is often on hand to discuss his famous work “La Nostalgia” and offer a unique perspective on the region’s artistic culture.

Most importantly, Puerto Vallarta has something for everyone’s taste and price range – making it easy to come home with a piece of this beautiful city. Regardless of when you visit Puerto Vallarta, the city will have plenty to inspire your creative side. The Puerto Vallarta art scene is always expanding, incorporating new styles and concepts to reflect the ideas of artists and visitors alike.

A Definition of an Adventure Tour

Many people dream of having amazing adventures like one might see in the movies. Other vacationers decide to vacation at the same unadventurous location. If you are looking for a change from the ordinary and want to bring some real adventure into your life, you might want to consider taking an adventure tour for your next vacation. An adventure tour can be made up of a number of different components, but the end result is that you get to explore the best that the world has to offer in a hands-on way. Keep in mind that adventure tours are not for everyone; read these examples of common adventure tour components to see if one is right for you and your family.

Most adventure tours involve hiking at one point or another, generally in conjunction with camping. Some of the hikes may be relatively short, serving as a down-to-earth method of transportation between larger components of the tour. Other hikes can be quite long, comprising a major part of the tour’s attraction. Many of the longer hikes have basic recommendations for your fitness level or they may ill require that you have a certain amount of hiking experience before you take them simply because the distances would be difficult for an out of shape individual to cover safely and in time with the rest of the group.

White water rafting is a common component of an adventure tour. Tours exist that take you on all grades of rivers, though the higher grades usually require a certain amount of rafting experience, which helps prevent you from being a danger to yourself and others. Some tours may even take you across different grades on different days, letting you build up experience over the course of the tour, allowing you to be ready for larger rapids later. Most rafting tours involve camping and may include hikes in between river sections as well.

Although not as common as rafting, a number of tours include a kayaking component as well. A number of these tours are featured in Alaska, where kayaking has somewhat of a cultural component; Alaskan kayak tours are often done in the open ocean. Kayaking is generally not the largest component of the tour, though dedicated kayaking tours do exist.

Another element that is incorporated into a number of adventure tours is rock climbing or rappelling. There is a larger element of danger involved with rock climbing than with a standard hiking tour, but the sense of accomplishment and adventure is well worth it. Many adventure tours that feature rock climbing or rappelling are centered in mountainous regions where climbing may be the primary focus of the tour. There are some hiking tours, which feature rock climbing as just a single component of the tour.

Other extreme sports may also be featured in adventure tours, though they are not as common as the elements that have already be mentioned. Some adventure tours incorporate bungee jumping, cliff diving, hang gliding, and similar activities in addition to hiking and more common components. Finding these tours may be a bit more difficult than finding a basic hiking tour, but if you are looking for a major thrill, these tours can definitely provide that extra sense of excitement.

It should be noted that not all adventure tours are wilderness based; many adventure tour companies have packages, which allow you to experience the adventures of modern life. Tours can go to cities like Las Vegas and San Francisco are relatively common, and some of them even manage to mix city entertainment components with wilderness adventure in the outlying natural parks as well. Other tours are based out of an RV, which you take from one location to the next for each daily event. Some adventure tours contain components such as paintball or other team competitions as well. These are all exciting activities, which are excellent if you are looking to escape from the traditional trip to the beach. Although these may not be as relaxing as the beach, they sure provide excitement and a new thrill to your life.

Regardless of which type of adventure tour you choose, you can expect to have a great time while on the tour. Many adventure tours consist of hiking and camping, but they may also have secondary components such as kayaking and rock climbing. If these are not what you are looking for, there are adventure tours that include extreme sports such as bungee jumping, cliff diving or hang-gliding. The length of the tours can vary from 2-3 days to up to 2 weeks or more, so you should be able to find a tour that meets your exact requirements. If you are looking for a non-traditional vacation, it is highly recommended to try an adventure vacation because it provides an experience that should last a lifetime.

Bask Unabashedly in the Bahamas – Bahamas Travel Information

From the Biminis in the northwest to Great Inagua in the southeast, The Bahamas is a blissfully tropical stretch of about 700 islands and cays in the Atlantic Ocean. The tropical and subtropical paradise is quite literally a vacationer’s every dream all within the single sovereign country of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. Catch your airfare to the Bahamas and dive into the resort life or island hop to adventure this season!

Travel to the Bahamas is quite simple due to its proximity to the U.S. coast of Florida. Airfare to the Bahamas is most common through Miami International Airport, although many major airlines now fly direct to Nassau. From there you can catch an island jumper to any of the Bahamian islands. Travel within the Bahamas is just that easy; for excursions from Nassau you may jump on a ferry to any of the outlying and far more peaceful islets.

White Sand, White Sails, Why Not?

The Bahamas is quite possibly the quintessential getaway for most of the United States, Canada, Europe and South America. The booming cruise ship industry makes a large portion of its voyages to the islands, typically leaving port from either Miami or Fort Lauderdale and stopping on New Providence and a small handful of other islands. For more of a land-based stay, book yourself an all-inclusive week in one of the many luxurious resorts.

The island of San Salvador offers several secluded retreats catering to the romantics, as well as its own slice of famous history. Often referred to as Columbus Isle, this is the first piece of New World upon which Christopher Columbus dropped his anchor. Though this may not be a celebrated moment among the locals, it is still historically significant. Crooked Island is also a wonderfully wild stop in the Bahamas. Rugged coastline gives way to thick greenery rich with endangered birds, butterflies and even some flamingoes. The island also boasts ‘the world’s largest swimming pool,’ in the form of the crystal clear shallows of Bathing Beach.

Speaking of the pink creatures, make a trip to Inagua National Park to view the largest breeding colony of West Indian flamingoes in the world. The park is centered about Lake Rosa, where hundreds of exotic birds dominate the shimmering waters. For even more adventure, discover the limestone openings to the longest underwater cave system in the world against a picturesque backdrop of golden dunes and turquoise waves on Grand Bahama’s Lucayan National Park.

Bahamian Bon Voyage

The unique wonders of the Bahamas are seemingly countless. Although most travelers stay resort and beach bound, it is clearly worth anyone’s while to explore the natural gifts and cultural diversity of these islands. From world-class divers to professional deep sea fishermen, the Bahamas is not short of sport and recreation. While the capital of Nassau offers all major city amenities, the towns of the southeast islands are far more intimate and socially diverse, rich with Caribbean fare and regional specialties. Get your feet in some white sand this year. Bon Voyage!

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