Archive for November, 2011
For the travel enthusiasts and all those who have a penchant for exploring new lands, the New Year brings a lot of options to quench this thirst of witnessing various travel destinations , which are culturally and socially diverse, as with changing time and with every coming year, these places improve or introduce many things, that draws a lot of tourist attention towards them.
This coming year, 2012, visit these amazing destinations, who have something or other to lure tourists. Here are few of these best tourist destinations, which have earned the subtitle of “must visit”.
A place where music, art and romance are literally in the air, Venice is a travel destination where you can experience a romantic escape with your beloved or an exciting sojourn in the land of mysterious alleys and historical structures. The beautiful bridges and canals, and the interesting Gondola rides would charm you as much as the architecture and buildings, reminding one of an old world charm. From fashion to food, from aestheticism to people, Venice will be a pure delight to any traveler with best provisions for its tourists.
The enthralling landscapes, a charming countryside, the regal castles and buildings and a modern day city equipped with all kind of amenities, what is not there in Scotland for a tourist. This coming year, collect some wonderful memories by a trip to Glasgow. This place will provide you the magic of ballets, balls and operas in its classic castles and some brilliant sport matches in its auditoriums. Get acquainted with a unique culture in Scotland while meeting the warmest of the people in the world and eating some of the best recipes.
London is a travel, commercial, and political hub. All in one this brilliant city in United Kingdom has everything to offer to its tourists. Though the city is getting prepared for the 2012 Football Olympics, the rest of its attractions are as untainted as a painting. Traveling through the Tube, and watching the splendor of the Thames, the Tower Bridge, various other buildings and Museums, will give you an experience of London, that is authentic to its identity. The south east London, Greenwich is a phenomenal place to explore the royal cadence of the entire city and the Baroque architecture will completely stun you. Buy the best fashion brands, eat the best food and experience the lap of luxury in London.
Hong Kong, China
Whether you are on a look out for amazing architecture, or historical traces, for food or fun, for technology or for travel, China is a complete package. Emerging as one of the best economies in the world, China caters to all kind of tourists, and its popular cities are culturally rich and unique, like Hong Long. The city has beautiful skyscrapers as well as rustic villages, it entertains you through various casinos and bars, and tend to your arty spirit through its music, architecture, and literature. The Chinese cuisine has reached the entire world but do not miss out on an original experience.
Las Vegas, Nevada
The first thing we come up with, on hearing Vegas, is the casinos, and that is indeed the USP of this US city. The crowded streets and the hovering buildings have a charm of their own, as here lies a culture of the fast and furious lifestyle. Watch the central hub of the show business, and enjoy various entertainment shows here. The Sin City is an absolute escape from the mundane life that we live regularly, so take a break and give a shot to Vegas.
The land of Diversity and one of the most emerging economies of the world, India’s commercial hub Bangalore, is a popular tourist attraction and with coming years and passage of time, adopting so many things for the comfort of people from all around the world. The popular place for most of the concerts, and arty dos, Bangalore welcomes the tourists in its grand malls, bars and through a raving nightlife. Enjoy the delicious food in the city, and explore the Indian charm in Bangalore while traveling through the high speed metro train.
Spain is the world’s best port country, and Cadiz is its best tourist city, with amazing architectural sights in almost every plaza, the ancient ruins and towers singing of a unique culture, the ports and beaches having a life of their own and the food that you cannot find anywhere else. Though the town is slow and quiet, and reminds you of a historical time and an ancient place, it lightens up and shines brilliantly in the February Carnival, when the whole town is busy in drinking, singing and dancing. The place provides a tourist an absolute Andalusian feel.
Queenstown, New Zealand
Though the entire country is a popular tourist destination, despite of its biting cold, the Southern town of Queensland is a favorite amongst many people because of its brilliant lakes. The mountains, lakes and parks, all provide such charming sight and exciting adventure sports for any one with a daring heart that one trip doesn’t seem satisfactory. The lake Wanaka and Te Anau are the most populated regions during tourists incoming , a time when the snow peaks and mountains are crowded with people indulging in skiing and snow golfing. The charming locales have made this lake town, one of the most desirable places to visit in 2012.
All these brilliant destinations provide a unique charm, each different from another. Make your travel plans and have a best travel experience in the 2012.
The travel agents can now take a deep breath, as according to the new policy by IRDA, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority, the travel insurance companies will now return 100% amount of the risk cover that the agents are supposed to pay. The risk cover, reverted earlier was 80%, though a 100% premium was paid by the agents, so in order to make the procedure beneficial for them, IRDA now announces that Insurance companies will revert 100% of the amount. The agents used to bear the remaining 20% of this amount themselves, through individual bank guarantees.
The President of TAAI, Travel Agents Association of India, Mr. Iqbal Mulla, met the officials of UIICL, United India Insurance Company Limited, and discussed the problem faced by the travel agents, and on comprehending the situation, the UIICL not only agreed for the 100% cover revert but also approved of a rate 1.30% and service tax, on any insured amount of more than Rs. 30 Crores. This has been a breaking achievement and joy for the travel agents.
For the efforts put in by Mulla, the president of TAFI, Travel Agents Federation of India, Mr. Ajay Prakash, has congratulated him and praised his efforts, as it will bring a lot of comfort to the agencies, according to him. He added, “While all this was happening in the country, I was at Macau for the TAFI Convention. However, I was constantly in touch with Mr Mulla via phone regarding the status of this issue. The efforts put in by him will definitely benefit the entire travel agent fraternity as getting a bank guarantee is not an easy task since it has serious cost implications for travel agents. This shows that when associations work in tandem, we can achieve great heights.”
The Chairman of the Western Region of TAAI, Mr. Jay Bhatia, also agreed and showed satisfaction at this new achievement, and considered this to be more beneficial for mid -sized agents, for whom paying the collateral money in individual banks was never an easy task. This new scheme, unequivocally, brought a lot of relief to the travel agents.
The weekend saw a chaotic Scottish Highlands, as winds of about 114 mph brought the entire town down, in the form of jammed roads, delayed or canceled flights, and power cut. Though the whole of Scotland was a victim of the gale, the Scottish Highlands were the worst hit, as the news of the highest winds came from Cairngorms, the eastern mountain ranges of Highlands.
In various regions of the Highlands, the different speed of wind, affected those lands in different ways. The weather department has been on alert ever since, to provide the neighborhoods with acute warnings. Orkney, faced a complete town black out because of its 80 mph gale, while Glen Ogle in Stirlingshire witnessed a wind of about 96 mph.
The heavy rains added to the chaos, and hit traffic badly as, various lanes were waterlogged and flooded completely. The road A86 between Newtonmore and Laggan, and the one at Pennyfuir A85, were closed because of the heavy pouring, while many roads were closed for the high sided vehicles such as, A9 Kessock Bridge, Erskine Bridge, and Forth Road Bridge.
The winds started on Saturday and continued till Sunday, and ever since the vehicles have been made to abide by the restricted speed limits and especially on certain routes such as, Skye, Friarton, Tay Bridge, Erskine and Clackmannanshire. And some routes were completely closed, to prevent mishappenings, like the CalMac Ferries , reduced and for some time even canceled their services to Skye and Lewis.
The winds are still surging in the Gaelic Islands, and while the Edinburgh castle was closed before time on Saturday due to the winds, it is expected that the coastal and hilly areas, might witness same windy disruptions today also. The whole traveling routes, on plains, and mountains have been affected poorly by these gale winds, and the entire Scotland is down with bad weather.
A national strike in Britain to start on Wednesday has the potential to impact the operations at the airport and many public services throughout Britain. The Airport Authorities at Britain have warned the airlines last Friday to reduce their services by 50% for November 30 as operations at customs and immigration department are likely to be most affected.
Norman Boivin (CEO, Heathrow) advised airlines about expected “gridlock” which meant that incoming passengers would be unable to take off and aircraft would not get parking space at already overcrowded terminals.
The hospital services may also be affected and schools are expected to close if strike takes place for 24 hours as planned.
The Trades Union Congress for British Unions expects more than 2 million workers to participate in the strike which is to protest the government plan to decrease $185 budget deficit through reducing pensions and increasing worker wage contributions.
At Gatwick, London’s second largest airport too, the airlines have been asked to reduce the number of arriving passengers.
Thousands of visitors turned out on opening day of turned out for the opening day of Andaman Travel Trade Expo being held at Phuket.
The event organized with aim to relate tour operators with business across Thailand continues at the Convention Hall, Phuket Rajabhat University. 302 tourist operators from 28 countries and 160 from Phuket, Phang Nga, Ranong, Krabi, Trang and Satun are attending the event.
The expo is getting a good response and means good business with opportunity to interact with local hotels, suppliers and service providers for international groups.
The International London Heathrow airport is under severe threat of long flight delays, as the public sectors’ strike next week, is bound to get chaotic, causing gridlock at the airport.
Due to the immigration officers’ strike, the airport witnessed 12 hours delay of the flights, from scheduled time, which is expected to get worse with next week’s public sector strike.
The strike, which is an outrage against the proposed pension changes , is likely to affect the economy as well , according to the Chief Secretary of the Treasury, Danny Alexander, who also said that the disruption is something that “we can ill afford”.
The long delays on the flight was tried to bring under control, by the BAA, the owner’s decision, to fly the planes only 50% filled. Though the emergent disruption , caused by the Immigration officers’ strike, was tried to be controlled by managers covering immigration desks, but an inevitable disturbance in the flight schedule is bound to come.
Heathrow is London’s largest airport, and serves long routes flights, from countries to countries, this is making a strong reason for the great threat that the airport authorities are facing. The operating officer, Normand Boivin, also said, that the flights would be delayed and he accused the UK border agency, for failing in their performance of normal operations of migrations through various routes. Boivin added, that this could bring major problems, both for airport authorities and passengers, as neither the flight would be able to accommodate the passengers for such a long delay nor the terminal, which would result in the jampacked terminals, mass cancellations of flights, and route diversions also.
To ease the situation, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways, have proposed the passengers, to change their flights , free of cost , that will reduce the chaos.
Hotel Cordial Mogan Playa, in Gran Canaria Island of Spain, witnessed a Propane gas explosion, leaving 23 people injured, while 6 received severe burns. The explosion resulted in the hotel catching fire, which made the spa ceiling to collapse.
At the time of explosion, the hotel was accommodating 862 guests, but the people who are seriously injured are mainly hotel staff members. 5 of the victims were hotel workers, who received 30 to 90% burns, while one female Norwegian tourist, a guest at the hotel, received about 100% burns, and is in a critical state. The 5 injured staff members include, the hotel’s spa manager, 3 cleaners and a bell- hop.
According to the reports, a gas tanker was filling the inner deposits of the hotel, and that is where the accident happened. Marcos Rodriguez, the President of the work’s committee of the hotel, stated, that some of the staff members observed “strong smell of gas”, but before any action could have been taken, the explosion happened.
The hotel authorities , immediately came to an alert and a safety campaign was brought into action, through which the victims were treated on a field hospital, formed by hotel authorities, while the seriously injured were taken to hospitals on the Island, through helicopter. The hotel also summoned Psychiatrists for rest of the victims and the people who witnessed the explosion, to help with the anxiety attacks and the horrible impression of the blast. The hotel was immediately evacuated, on the assumptions that later in the day, they would be able to take them in again, with proper care and maintenance of the demolished zones.
Video Available On Youtube
Though Christmas celebrations have become commercialized over the years, we still like to reminisce the past and get lost in the old world charm of Christmas. A visit to some popular Europe destinations will transport you back in the past and also give you an education in European culture and tradition.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in Italy
Tuscany is the city where you to be, if you have to celebrate Christmas the traditional way in Italy. Here Christmas is in the air from the second week of December. It is on December 8 that the Italians begin their Christmas celebrations in Italy. The Feast of the Immaculate Conception in Tuscany is a holiday and is marked by several events arranged by the people and the government authorities in different parts of the city.
The Equi Terme caves are also popular for their native Christmas celebrations. The locals here create several objects making good use of their art and craft skills. These objects can also be purchased by visitors who buy them as gifts for families back home.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in Germany
If you are an avid shopper, try the lanes and by-lanes of the German cities to quench your shopping needs during Christmas time. Unlike many other places where prices of objects in shops rise due to the large number of visitors and enthusiastic shoppers, Germany is a country where you can avail the best bargains in shopping during Christmas time. There are traditional fairs which are arranged across the green fields of Germany. These fairs have the same arrangements which were seen in the 14th century and hence are not only a fun visit but also a learning tour of the German history and culture. German markets are a must visit if you are on a Europe Christmas vacation.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in Switzerland
Christmas in Switzerland is all about snow and skiing on the Swiss Alps. But do you want to experience something different in Switzerland at Christmas time? Travel to the border area of Germany and France and sit on the banks of the river Rhine in Basel to see the beautiful Christmas lights lighten your mood. The Basel area reportedly has the longest illuminated street in Europe at Christmas time. The Swiss traditional art & crafts are an added attraction for Christmas visitors in Switzerland. The Christmas season in Switzerland starts by the end of November, when the festivity can already be felt in the air.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in Austria
The one reason why we remember Austria during Christmas time is for the carol ‘Silent Night’. This famous carol comes from Austria and has been our favorite since our childhood days.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in France
Christmas celebrations in the most fashionable country of the world would be a very good idea, and everyone would agree with me, wouldn’t they? A midnight mass is one of the chief attractions of France during Christmas time. The concept of a Midnight Mass has existed in Europe’s fashion country since time immemorial and getting the opportunity to watch this mass is an achievement in itself. The mass is an integral part of France’s history and tradition.
- Traditional Christmas Celebrations in UK
Visit Ireland if you are on a visit to UK at Christmas time. The candle-lighting ceremony in Ireland churches at Christmas Eve. This tradition is followed by downing some of the best available wines in the country liquor shops. Lights and Santa Claus are also an integral part of the Irish Christmas.
Attractive Christmas Discounts
Christmas is the time for vacation, shopping, good food, and with all of this comes the most attractive discounts of the year. There are several tourism operators who arrange the best discounts for those who love a budget holiday, and even for those who do not! Keep a check on online information for Christmas discounts and avail them to enjoy the cheapest but the best Europe Christmas holiday ever. Here are some such discount packages that you can check out before the Christmas season 2011.
European tour operators Globusjourneys, who have been in the business of providing the best holiday packages to people for more than 80 years now, will take you on European Christmas tours to the best countries in the continent’s heartland. These tours not only introduce you to the best sights of Europe, but also teach you much about the countries’ cultures and local practices. Here are some packages that you can choose from if you wish to travel to these Europe locales for a 2011 Christmas holiday:
- Christmas Package in Austria & Bavaria
7 days travel from Munich to Vienna (package starts from $1,229 excluding all airfare for trips from the US or any other country)
You can spend time in the cities of Munich, Salzbur and Vienna in this tour package and enjoy the special Christmas events here.
- Christmas Package in Munich and Eastern Europe
9 days travel from Munich to Vienna (package starts from $1,349 excluding airfare)
Travel to historic locations of Prague, Vienna and Budapest as part of the tour and learn more about the countries’ culture with help from a local guide arranged by the tour operators.
- Christmas Package in Paris and London
9 days travel from Paris to London (package starts at $1,699 without airfare)
There is nothing better than spending Christmas and New Year in the world’s most happening locales, Paris and London. Spend the Christmas day in fashion roaming the streets of Paris and dining on the wonderful cuisine of plush restaurants. A New Year’s Eve celebration in London is a treat to the eyes and the senses.
Why is Christmas Best in Europe?
Have you ever asked yourself the question why people love to spend Christmas in Europe? It is true that Europe is home to countries which have a perfect blend of the old-world charm with modernity. Europe is also the home of the some of the best cuisine in the world. But there are also several other reasons for Europe becoming the preferred holiday destination during Christmas for people from all over the world. Some of them are:
- The tour operators in Europe make special arrangements to cater to the needs of visitors from other continents of the world, in terms of food and other facilities.
- Every tour operator makes sure that the tourists can be on a holiday to a particular place when a special Christmas event is being held there so that tourists may enjoy not only sights but also cultural exhibitions.
- Hotels in all places across Europe are known for their good services and boarder-friendly behavior.
- Europe has several snow covered regions; for many, Christmas is nothing if there is no snow!
Christmas is that time of year when the whole world makes merry, has fun in the midst of light, firecrackers, snow, shopping and of course Santa Claus. Dallas, one of the largest cities in the US is also no exception to this rule. The Christmas celebrations in this American city are carried out with much fanfare and activities that reflect the tradition and culture of the American state of Texas. Over the past couple of years, the Dallas Christmas light tours have become one of the chief ways to holiday in this prominent city of the US. Tour operators arrange short and long trips to this American city in weeks preceding and following Christmas. Large numbers of tourists throng the Dallas heartland during the winter vacation to enjoy the light tours and the other sightseeing areas of the city.
Christmas Light Tour Arrangements in Dallas
You can travel on your own in Dallas and take in the beautiful surroundings or can avail the services of any tour operator or travel agent to make your travel program easy and relaxed. After you reach Dallas, you can choose to use the services of car operators in this city so as to ensure a smooth ride as you browse through the tourist sites in Dallas, shop for special objects at discounted rates in Dallas shops, eat at the best restaurants and enjoy watching the lights and fireworks of Dallas. Here are some car services that you can partake during your Christmas holiday in Dallas.
- The ECS Nationwide – ECS Nationwide is one of the most renowned car service providers in Texas. This executive car service provider will give you your choice of car for touring the beautiful city of Dallas. The limousine service is by far the most popular among tourists in Dallas who come to watch the beautiful lights and the decorations of the city at Christmas time. Your limousine will take you to the Dallas Fort where the Christmas lights are at its best in this American city. The ECS Nationwide always pledges for the best car services on Christmas light tours in Dallas so that you take home the loveliest memories of your winter vacation and return to Dallas each year to celebrate December 25 and the New Year. The limousines take you on a tour to the principal tourist sites in Dallas – the Highland Park, the Dallas Arboretum, the Deer Field of Plano, the Neiman Marcus Building and the Old City Park. The light decorations at these sights are world famous and will indeed keep you dumbfounded!
The Grand Prairie region of Texas is another area that you can cover on your limousine journey. The Prairie Lights Holiday is a spectacular display of lights that you must not miss if you are on a Christmas holiday in Dallas.
If you are on a long trip to Dallas, you can also opt for a halt at the Whistle Stop Christmas fest at the Hulen Park area of Cleburne in Texas. This park, though situated in the outskirts of Dallas, is a must visit to see the wonderful display of more than 3 million lights within one area. Sitting in the comfort of your limousine, the Dallas Christmas light tours are indeed an experience of a lifetime!
- The Angel Christmas Lights Limo – this limousine service in Dallas offers transportation facilities to the Dallas Fort area and the nearby tourist sites in the city. The lights near the Dallas Fort area are not only some of the most spectacular, they are also the most gorgeous, considering that this part of Dallas is the most happening part of the city. There are several opportunities to delve in the colorful nightlife of Dallas if you have opted to use the services of the Angel Christmas Lights Limo. The stretch limousines offered by this car service provider take passengers ranging from 2 to above 20. So you can travel as a couple, or in a group of friends or family. Moreover these limos come equipped with a bar that stocks the best soft drinks available. Do you want to travel in a larger group? Avail the services of the limo bus offered by the Angel Christmas Lights. Travel to the Spring Park in the Richardson area of Dallas, or the Sundance Square in Fort Worth, or Interlochen in Arlington, watch the shining Christmas lights in these places and enjoy a lovely Christmas!
Places You Must Visit on Dallas Christmas Light Tours
Here are a few places that you must travel to when you visit Dallas in the Christmas vacation. The lights and the decorations in these places will surely catch your eye and inspire you to return to Dallas the next year Christmas.
- Kessler Neighborhood Park – this site located in the popular Oak Cliff area of Dallas is a must visit place when you are on your Christmas vacation in Texas. This place is easy to reach considering that it is located near to the Methodist Central Hospital of Dallas. Here you will find the best decorations in the form of lights on the roofs of houses, lights on the well decorated Christmas trees and lights planted all along the neighboring streets.
- Highland Park – this area is very easy to reach from different parts of Texas considering that it is flanked by Tollway on the west, Mockingbird on the north, Preston on the east and Armstrong on the south. The local community in Highland Park starts Christmas decorations from the month of November. The trees and houses lining the entire stretch of 20 blocks in Highland Park are decorated with thousands of lights. You can avail the services of a carriage in the Beverly area of Highland Park to take a romantic ride with your loved one by your side, as you take in the beautiful decorations of the surrounding village.
- Christmas in the Square – a trip to the Square will not only help you to enjoy the lights and decorations of Dallas, it will also remain etched in your memory as an adventure trip for a family of young and old. Several special Christmas events are hosted at this Dallas Square. Visit the Square in the weekends before and after Christmas to have fun as you watch more than 1 lakh lights twinkling and shining to the accompaniment of music. Musical performances are the chief attraction for tourists on a Dallas Christmas trip to this Square. This Square has the largest choreographed Christmas lights in Dallas.
- Deerfield – Deerfield is one of the most decorated places that you will come across during your Christmas holiday in Dallas. According to reports in history, it was the urge among the residents of this place to sell their houses that gave birth to the tradition of the beautiful Christmas lights used here. Today, Deerfield is known more for its houses than its surroundings. The reports claim that since the prices of houses were too high to be sold to common people, the residents decided to decorate them with lights to attract buyers. Since then Deerfield houses have been popular in the US and the tradition of decorating these houses with lights during Christmas and other festivals has caught on.
- Interlochen – this small neighborhood of North Arlington also attracts quite a large number of visitors during the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year celebrations. A survey showed that more than 40,000 people travel to Interlochen to spend the winter vacation; only in order to take in the colorful display of light and fireworks. However, being only a small part of the Dallas Christmas tour, Interlochen is often given a miss by tourists who are more interested in travelling to the popular parts of Dallas and Texas. As a result, the Interlochen government authorities often suffer from a lack of money to arrange lavish decorations in Christmas time. The residents often have to spend a bulk amount from their own funds to make the celebrations a success by introducing more lights and other forms of decoration.
- Special Dallas Christmas Light Tours – the year 2011 will see special Christmas light tours arranged in some parts of the city. For instance, there are plans by a unit called the Farmers Branch of Dallas to inaugurate the Christmas Tour of Lights in the Valley View and Interstate 35 regions of Dallas. More than 300,000 lights will be used for decoration along the roads leading from these sites, claim reports. A parade will also be organized starting from the two points. You can participate in the parade and also take part in the festivities without having to spend a single penny from your own pocket. However, donations to the Farmers Branch are always encouraged, considering that these small places in Dallas do not have sufficient funds to compete with the Christmas celebrations of the commercial centers of Dallas.
With so much going on near the end of the year, it can make you feel like taking a long vacation. The fact of the matter is, because you’ll have so many other things lined up, knowing where to go in December can be incredibly tricky. With Christmas around the corner, you have two options when choosing your destination: embrace the holiday spirit or get as far away as you can. Though it’s unlikely you’ll be able to escape a festive decoration or the trail of Santa Claus, picking a location that you’ll enjoy is what matters most. Whether you are looking for somewhere to go for Christmas and New Year’s or hoping to take one last break before the family arrives, here are some great choices:
It’s tough to beat a trip to the Big Apple any time of year, but the month of December makes it even more special. The combination of extravagant decorations created by retailers, like the shop windows of Macy’s, and the excitement of another New Year countdown in Times Square gives the city an extra bit of juice. Spend an hour or two gliding on the ice under the world’s most famous Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center, then take in the annual holiday-themed Rockettes performance – a New York tradition for over 75 years.
Those who love to snow ski always find December an ideal time to sneak in a weekend on the slopes; the powder is fairly fresh and Jack Frost has not quite arrived to nip at their noses too much. You might have a favorite resort close to home, but there’s something special about tackling the trails on the mountains Olympians train on. With gorgeous mountain peaks peppered with stunning redwood trees at Squaw Valley and other resorts in the area, the views are spectacular, too. It’s a great place to spend a day cutting through the snow and before settling by the fire with a hot chocolate in the evening.
If you would like to have a warm-weather holiday in a country where Christmas is still widely celebrated, consider a trip Down Under. December is part of the Australian summer, meaning you can hang out on Bondi Beach after opening your presents (a lot of people will be there, it’s an annual tradition). Nature lovers will relish the opportunity to trek along some of the least-touched landscapes on the planet – even a brief walkabout outside city limits can make modern life disappear.
This wide swath of land in southern South America takes up parts of Argentina and Chile. Known for its striking variety, you will find steep cliff faces and deep caves emerging from under a blanket of snow at higher altitudes. The forested areas, often resting at the foot of sky-scraping mountains, will have just begun to bloom as the wildlife awakens from slumber. In other parts of the region, you will find expansive grasslands teeming with deer and other animals, as well as dozens of species of colorful birds.