There is a chance I may never scuba dive again. Because then I will be able to say “the last time I dove was in Bora Bora.” And really, with a drift snorkel jammed with vibrant coral and exotic fish directly next to Le Taha’a Resort, I have one less reason to don a scuba tank. (And one more excuse to visit this property again). For the record, we didn’t sleep at Le Tahaa, but I was given an extensive tour of the rooms, the pool and spa while also experiencing a spectacular lunch. I’d heard many mutterings about the Relais & Chateau – operated property on Taha’a, but had no idea how blown away I would be at the vistas and service until I approached the small French Polynesian island in the resort’s private shuttle.
Swamps, alligators, snakes, big cats and lemurs never get old, and if you find yourself in south Florida, tear yourself away from the shopping at Sawgrass Mills for a few hours to do a tour. Not only can you hold a baby alligator and pet some epic snakes, but there are many other rare animals to encounter. As a National Geographic Kids Insider, I have learned a bunch about big cats, but this is certainly the place to see them in person. I was pretty sad seeing them in cages, but hoped they get to roam and run freely as much as possible in order to keep the species healthy.
Even after visiting many schools in Liberia for Right to Play, I wasn’t prepared for what I would see when I did a similar outing in Jamaica. Maybe because Africa is farther. Maybe I equate the Caribbean with vacations. You see photos of soft beaches, tropical drinks and killer sunsets and think everyone must live a resort lifestyle. Whatever the excuse, it’s embarrassing that I’ve been so blasé and undereducated.
We don’t even need a gift to want to board a plane. But, well, ok. People who travel tend to know themselves and their world very well, so finding the perfect gift can be a challenge. I tend to favour minimalist packing, stylish plane attire, and good luggage. There are a few other traveler gifts on the list too…
After so many trips to Paris, I finally got the courage to venture underneath the city. The Paris Catacombs, in the 14th arrondisement is an underground ossuary that houses a collection of over 6 million burials – skulls and bones that were moved there in 1774 in order to solve the problems of crowded cemeteries and cave-ins. Mass graves at cemeteries like Saints-Innocents in Paris’s Les Halles district were overcrowded with bodies, and the improper disposal of corpses led to unsanitary conditions that contributed to the spread of disease. Hundreds of years of history can be gleaned from the skulls.
The village of Mont Tremblant is nestled in the Laurentian Mountains in Québec, Canada. It’s well known as a popular winter destination because of the fabulous Mont Tremblant Ski Resort. The village is lesser known as a summer destination, but it is a wonderful place to stay in the summer because of the numerous family activities available. The region is dotted with sparkling clean lakes, deep arboreal forests, and amazing mountain ranges.
Nearly everyone who comes to New York City makes a point of visiting Central Park. It is, quite literally, the heart of Manhattan, and any guide to NYC will direct you to explore this green oasis, which is so full of wonders, it can make you feel like a kid again.
But for those of us with actual children in tow, sometimes you just need the relative sanity of a fenced in playpark, where you can sip a coffee while the youngsters burn off some energy. For us, some of the greatest gems sprinkled throughout Central Park are the 21 different playgrounds—all 100% free, open from dawn to dusk, many of which have been renovated by the Central Park Conservancy over the last few years. As a resident of Manhattan since my children were two and three years-old, I’ve done some serious investigation of at least two-thirds of those parks and have whittled down my favourites to these five Central Park playgrounds.
Since my last trip to Disney World two years ago, the resort has introduced magic bands. Mailed to your home prior to your trip so you have them on arrival, each Disney World ‘Magic Band‘ is engraved with the names of the respective members in your party. The bands come in 8 solid colours—pink, green, red, purple, orange, yellow, blue, and grey. Basically, the My Disney Experience website emails to let you know when your bands are being sent to your home (Don’t worry, if you make a last minute reservation you can pick them up at the resort when you arrive.) They’re sleek and pretty cool actually, but if you want something a bit fancier (think: Star Wars or Frozen) you can grab those online at the Disney Store.
Though Disney has received criticism for some of their Disney princess characters of the past—exaggerated in dimension, with tiny waists and huge eyes, they didn’t represent “real women” in shape. Despite this talk, however, I never looked down on these characters or their stories. Then again, you can find me on any given day flipping through pages of numerous fashion magazines, feeling inspired and proud of my gender, not angered at the logistics of airbrushing.
What’s New at Walt Disney World? The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration is an inspiring and exciting event and as I sit in the Yacht Club Resort’s conference room, I am live blogging about all that’s new and exciting here.