Category Archives: Destinations

Cold Travel Destinations – Don’t Forget to Bring a Jacket!

As the world shrinks, the desire to visit its final frontiers becomes more and more pressing in the eyes of many travelers. We all want to see it before the concept of a frontier vanishes completely. For some, this has changed the concept of the typical vacation. Taking a long vacation used to be pretty straightforward: pick a tropical island or archipelago, sit on the beach, and have a margarita. Today’s tourists are much better traveled, and view travel as not exclusively about relaxation. Stronger emphasis is being placed on adventure and exploration. With that in mind, many are heading for the unknown, the abandoned, and the downright COLD regions of the world.

Cruises to Alaska to see the fjords and glaciers are now almost as common as the traditional Caribbean variety of cruise. With a warm cabin and great meals, more people are willing to brave the elements to get a glimpse at awe-inspiring natural beauty and marine wildlife such as whales and pods of orcas.

Tierra del Fuego, on the opposite pole, also attracts more and more visitors every year. The capital city of Ushuaia boasts many nearby ski areas, to be sure, but the majority of people do not visit the city for this. Tierra del Fuego National Park has some excellent trails, the area is quite beautiful, and all the major cruise lines operate out of Ushuaia. People come because it is at the end of the world.

Glaciers are also rapidly becoming prime tourist destinations. New Zealand is known for the Franz Josef and Fox glaciers; numerous outfits rent equipment and take scores of tourists out onto the blue ice. The Chilean fjords and numerous glacier fields have also seen a steady increase in traffic. Tourists flock to see the San Rafael glacier calve into the Laguna San Rafael. Perhaps this rush is not just about our frontiers disappearing as a concept, but physically as well; global warming has drastically shrunk a number of glaciers worldwide, at a disturbingly alarming rate.

Cold travel does not have to be purely about natural beauty, either. The town of Kemi, in Finland, has housed the world’s largest snow castle since the mid 1990s. This magnificent ice castle, three stories high and more than half a mile long, receives hundreds of thousands of tourists every year. The ice chapel makes it a popular wedding destination. Also in the same region is Santa Claus Village, where the man himself lives (a tourist trap for children if there ever was one.)

Of course, the destination that tops everyone’s bucket list is the continent of Antarctica. Much to the dismay of many environmentalists, visiting the “Frozen Continent” becomes easier with each passing year. The most popular cruises to Antarctica are based out of Tierra del Fuego. You cross the stormy Drake Passage before reaching the continent itself. At this point, smaller groups of people are taken out via zodiac boat to make landfall, look at penguins, and to just plan marvel at the ethereal beauty of this place.

It is definitely on my bucket list!

Hot Destination Wedding Locations You Might Not Have Considered

When we think of destination wedding locations our minds often turn to white sandy beaches in tropical climates. That is understandable. Who doesn’t enjoy lazy days on the beach in the warmth of a tropical breeze? But if you have been there and done that, or just want something a little more memorable for your destination wedding where do you turn? Consider these five options for building nuptial memories that are as rich in culture as they are in luxury.

Crete: Enjoy the rich history of the Island of Crete with a destination wedding on this sparkling island in the Mediterranean Sea. Imagine your wedding ceremony at sunset with the deep blue waters of the sea behind you and a warm breeze fluttering by. Afterwards spend a week or more relaxing on the beaches of Crete and alternately touring the rich historical sights of this ancient Island.

Stockholm: There are few places as romantic and overlooked as Stockholm, Sweden. Built around one of Europe’s largest most beautifully maintained medieval city centers spread out over fourteen islands Stockholm and the surrounding picturesque countryside is the perfect spot for a memorable destination wedding getaway. Go in the spring and see the spectacular carpet of flowers dotting the countryside. Get married by the light of the midnight sun in June and July or time your destination wedding to coincide with the traditional and spectacularly beautiful celebration of Santa Lucia on December 13th.

Venice: Who can resist the seductive charm of the Italian city of romance? Famous for its gondola trips through canals that intersect throughout the city Venice is an adventurer’s paradise. With centuries old architecture all around the history and romance of the city seems to seep into your soul. Create a lavish memory by choosing to hold your destination wedding in a historic villa with breathtaking scenery all around you in the historic hub of travel between Europe and the east.

Salzburg: Nestled snugly into the snowcapped Alps, Salzburg is often overlooked as the romantic getaway that it is. So much the better for the rest of us who are in the know. Rich in history and stunning scenery, Salzburg is one place where time seems to slow down. Not only okay to stop and smell the roses in Salzburg, it is expected. As such, it is the perfect place for a destination wedding. Add the fact that Salzburg is the home of Mozart and the setting for “The Sound of Music,” and there is plenty to engage your senses while you explore your honeymoon with your new spouse.

Israel: Israel holds the promise of a wealth of opportunities for a couple seeking a destination wedding. For Christians and Jewish people alike, Israel is a land of great history and meaning. Imagine exchanging nuptials on a terrace overlooking the old city of Jerusalem as the setting sun causes the stone to burn copper. For some a ceremony by the Western Wall would fulfill a lifetime dream. Or perhaps a ceremony back dropped by the Sea of Galilee where Jesus performed so many of his miracles… Or maybe simply feeling the warm breezes blow off the Mediterranean Sea with palm trees swaying overhead and the pulse of thousands of years of human history behind you is the right setting for your destination wedding.