Oklahoma City Tour – A Quick Guide for Outdoor Lovers

Bricktown, Oklahoma city

Oklahoma City has become a flourishing tourist destination, gradually leaving behind its culture of energy explorations and the cowboy lifestyle. From adventure lovers to leisure seekers, the city has something for all types of travel buffs. Check out some of the top outdoor recreation activities that you must include in your Oklahoma City itinerary.

Adventure Sports

whitewater rafting, OKC River Rapids

Image via Flickr by allisonmeier

If you love water and adventure, get ready for an adrenaline rush in Oklahoma City’s Boathouse District. This amusement park is ready to test your strength and courage with a range of exciting outdoor activities, such as walking on the sky trail some 80 feet above the ground, zip-lining across the Oklahoma River, and slipping down the country’s tallest high-speed slide.

OKC River Rapids lets you experience the thrill of whitewater rafting right in the heart of the city. With the use of advanced engineering and technology, this state-of-the-art rafting center is designed to serve both extreme sports lovers and vacationers. Kids can have their share of fun at Youth Zone, which boasts the scaled-down versions of the sky trail, zip line, waterslides, and bungee jumping platform.

Waterfront Activities

Lake Overholser, kayaking in oklahoma city

Image via Flickr by FreeWine

With a Riversport Pass, you can enjoy kayaking, canoeing, and paddleboating in the river or on Lake Overholser. Water taxis are a relaxing way of exploring downtown Oklahoma City too. Take in the liveliness of Bricktown as you float along the canals connecting the neighborhoods of downtown Oklahoma City. With half a dozen lakes and reservoirs open for angling, visitors can enjoy boating and fishing anytime in Oklahoma City. However, a permit is required for boating in the city waters.

Outdoor Escapes

flamingos, oklahoma city zoo

Image via Flickr by nodigio

Discover the wild side of the city at the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden. This 119-acre forest is designed to recreate the natural habitats of Asia and Africa, with big cats, gorillas, elephants, and more. The zoo also has scenic nature trails, butterfly gardens, picnic areas, and food courts. Lake Draper, a short drive from downtown, offers rustic campsites where you can pitch tents under the canopy of trees and go fishing and sailing around at the lake.

Leisure and Fun

spray ground, oklahoma city

Image via Flickr by JenX 67

Oklahoma City is situated in a subtropical climate zone. However, there are many fun ways to beat the heat outdoors. Make a splash and chill out at any of the community pools located in the city. The family aquatic centers feature spray grounds, wading and swimming pools, waterslides, and much more. In addition to the aquatic activities, White Water Bay also has extensive entertainment options, including shopping, dining, and movie shows.

Heritage Sights and Landmarks

overholser mansion, oklahoma city tour

Image via Flickr by rutlo

Oklahoma City has a rich past. If you want to delve deeper into the city’s heritage, you cannot miss historical landmarks like the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, Bricktown, the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, and the Overholser Mansion.

Many of these outdoor attractions are conveniently accessible from the centrally located hotels in Oklahoma City. With so many things to do in Oklahoma City, it is important that you choose your accommodation wisely. While late spring and early summer is the best time to visit Oklahoma City, you may get better hotel deals in the fall.

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11 Best Places to Visit in Dubai

Burj Al Arab, Dubai

Dubai is the first name to come to mind when one thinks of a fabulous vacation spot loaded with unbelievable attractions. Whichever direction you look, there’s something fantastic to claim your undivided attention. When you manage to tear your eyes away from one attraction, there’s another one close-by, waiting to take your breath away. That’s Dubai for you.

1. The Dubai Mall – What Does Shopping Mean to You?

Dubai mall, shopping in Dubai

The sprawling Dubai Mall is more than just a mall – it’s an experience of retail grandeur never before seen. It’ll take days just to window shop all of the 1,200-plus retail outlets. Apart from 150 fantastic restaurants, Dubai Mall has an ice rink, an indoor theme park, an enormous indoor waterfall and the piece-de-resistance – the fabulous Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo.

2. The Dubai Fountain

The Dubai Fountain, located at the base of the Burj Khalifa, is the world’s largest choreographed dancing water fountain. The water jets shoot up to 150 meters, illuminated by a thousand lights, swaying in time to an amazing array of musical scores. This incredibly mesmerizing show is even more spectacular at night when the LED lights that cover the Burj Khalifa are lit and the fountains light up the night. Watching the incredible fountain show is one of the best things to do in Dubai.

3. Burj Khalifa – The Height Says It All!

Burj Khalifa Dubai

At 828 meters, there’s not much to challenge the mighty Burj Khalifa but the eagles up high. The tallest building in the world not only dominates the city’s skyline, it provides stunning 360-degree views from its level 124 observatory. The view from Dubai Burj Khalifa’s the At The Top Sky Lounge on the 148th floor is even more spectacular. Linger for a lovely romantic meal in the clouds at the At.mosphere hotel on level 122, and watch the city buzzing away hundreds of feet below you.

4. Dubai Parks and Resorts

Dubai Parks and Resorts is a labyrinth of theme parks, water parks and more attractions than it’s possible to enjoy in a week. There’s the exciting Motiongate, Bollywood Parks, Legoland theme park and Legoland waterpark, plus the enticing Riverland Boulevard which is lined with amazing restaurants and cool entertainment options. Lapita, the luxury Polynesian-style hotel brings its own glamor and style to the theme park with its incredible architecture and design.

5. Palm Jumeirah

Atlantis, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai

Over time, human ingenuity has triumphed over nature again and again, but never with some spectacular audacity. Only Dubai could do it. The Palm Jumeirah is a beautifully sculpted manmade island in the shape of an open palm tree. The island caters to a select audience, with its high-end hotels. Here you’ll find the Waldorf Astoria, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, Fairmont, One&Only and the iconic Atlantis, The Palm. A monorail runs along the trunk of the island’s palm tree structure, which in turn connects to the mainland’s tram system.

6. Dubai Creek

The Dubai Creek is the saltwater estuary where the Bani Yas tribe dived for pearls and fish. Today the Bani Yas tribe rules Dubai, and that says everything. The Creek is rife with the history of Dubai. Cross the Dubai Creek in a traditional Abra, and explore the towns of Bur Dubai and Deira, with their magnificent gold and spice souqs.

7. The Desert

Desert Safari Dubai

Take another step into the past by entering the magnificent Arabian Desert. A Dubai-style desert safari with quad biking, off-roading, sandboarding, camel riding and a full traditional barbeque is just the ticket. The lovely red desert with its majestic dunes has been the true home of the ruling tribe for millennia. Sign up for a Heritage Dinner Safari for a truly cultural experience, or a night amongst the dunes at the Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa.

8. Dubai’s Parks

You might think parks are commonplace, but Dubai’s parks are some of the most beautiful, clean and tranquil you’ll ever see. For 5 AED, you’ll see families of various ethnicities enjoying themselves on pristine green lawns and flower gardens. Safa Park’s 150 acres of lawns, waterfalls, and hills are made for park lovers. Mushrif Park has extensive woodlands and a zoo. There are several other incredible parks to enjoy in Dubai. The city isn’t just about magnificent landmarks, right?

9. Burj Al Arab

Burj Al Arab, Dubai

The world’s first and only 7-star hotel, the Burj soars to a height of 321 meters and is visible for quite a distance across the Palm Jumeirah islands. Its distinctive sail-shaped outline has been the background for a million selfies that have been taken in front of it. The Burj is expensive, so the best way to see it would be to take tea at the Aswan Lounge for AED 280 and then explore this beautiful landmark.

10. Ski Dubai

How about checking out the mystical, hot desert dunes and hit the ski slopes on the same day? Is that even possible, unless you took a Mach whatever flight to the other side of the world? It’s possible in Dubai when you get to Ski Dubai at the Emirates Mall. Here you’ll transition from 50°C desert heat to below zero temperatures before you’re sure what hit you. You can hire all your ski stuff here, plus warm clothing. Enjoy a cup of piping hot chocolate at the café-bar halfway up the ski slope. Enjoy skiing, snowboarding, and tobogganing to your heart’s content and when you’re done, spend some time with Ski Dubai’s cute Snow Penguins!

11. Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo

The Dubai Aquarium

The Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo are filled with scary huge saltwater crocodiles and sharks of every description. Walking through the 48-metre acrylic aquarium tunnel and coming face-to-face with the incredible marine life is an unbeatable experience. The simulated virtual reality VRZOO experience takes you into the jungles of Asia and the African Savannah even as you stand right where you are. Plus, there’s shark diving and cage snorkeling, fun ways to get really up close to the dangerous sharks.

Conclusion

Dubai is adding to its list of wonders every day. Soon Ain Dubai will become public, as will the Dubai Frame and the Dubai Canal. If there weren’t sufficient reasons to visit this amazing city, there will be more soon! So pack your bags and head out to Dubai at the earliest. You don’t want to miss out on the best of Dubai.


A Guest Post by Neha Singh

As a Mass Comm postgraduate, Neha naturally has an artistic take on everything about life. This is quite evident in her writings as well. An avid trekker, explorer and a true foodie; Neha finds happiness in small endeavors of life and loves to pen them down as a cherished memory. A firm believer that “we have just one life to live and so much to do”, Neha lives every moment to the fullest. You can follow her journey at dubaiwikia.com.

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Traveling in Seattle: The Welcoming City

downtown seattle, seattle travel guide

From high-tech aviation centers to exquisite art museums, Seattle has diverse attractions. The city’s lively markets, historic neighborhoods, and beautiful parks are ideal for walking and cycling tours.

If you want to travel like a local in the Emerald City, follow this Seattle travel guide. Here are some of Seattle’s top highlights.

Downtown Seattle

space needle, seattle

Image via Flickr by arcalexx

Pioneer Square, the Central Public Library, and the Seattle Art Museum are clustered around the downtown area. The library is an architectural masterpiece built with thousands of glass panes joined by steel frames. Seattle’s iconic attraction, the Space Needle, is also a short drive from downtown.

The historic district of Pioneer Square offers a great environment for travel photography. Lined with shops selling anything from fresh fish and vegetables to clothing and accessories, the lively streets of Pike Place Market and the International District are best explored on foot. Step into one of the many eateries in this area and satisfy your taste buds with Asian or American delicacies.

Lake Union

lake union seattle

Image via Flickr by osiristhe

When in Seattle, set aside a day for watersports and adventure at Lake Union. Kayaking or standup paddleboarding at the lake lets you experience the sights and sounds of Seattle from a different viewpoint.

In addition, don’t miss the Ride the Ducks of Seattle tours. The “duck” is actually an amphibious craft that floats along the lake and water inlets and wheels around the streets of downtown Seattle.

If you’re ready to spend more, seaplanes can fly you over the city and Puget Sound. You’ll enjoy the thrill of flying in a seaplane and the bird’s-eye views of Lake Union, Ballard Locks, downtown Seattle, and the Olympic Mountains.

Waterfront Seattle

waterfront seattle, elliott bay

Image via Flickr by SisterPrice

The Seattle waterfront boasts parks, pathways, and boating piers, and the Elliott Bay Seawall connects downtown Seattle with the marina. Home to several souvenir shops and seafood joints, the waterfront is a place to relax and enjoy water excursions along Puget Sound.

Located at Pier 59, the Seattle Aquarium is a wonderful world of colorful fish, coral, and a variety of marine animals from the Pacific. Don’t miss Seattle Great Wheel, a giant Ferris wheel featuring climate-controlled gondolas with glass flooring to ensure exciting rides year-round.

Woodinville Wine Country

woodinville, seattle, winery, vineyard

Image via Flickr by dherrera_96

A short drive from downtown Seattle, Woodinville is home to several wineries where visitors can take guided tours and taste local wines. Find yourself immersed in the rustic greenery, soaking in the views of mountains and vineyards, and go biking along the nature trails. Guided wine tasting tours often include award-winning delicacies served with fine wines. You can extend your Woodinville experience by staying overnight, as there are hotel rooms available to fit every budget.

Woodland Park Zoo

The zoo is home to exotic wildlife from Africa, Australasia, and North America, including the Northwest, Canada, and Alaska. It’s the only place in Seattle where you can meet gorillas, watch giraffe families grazing, or spot a snow leopard relaxing with its cubs. The zoo is divided into different climatic zones ranging from tropical rainforest to coastal desert to create natural habitats for its residents.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. From watching ballet performances at the theater to harbor cruising on Elliott Bay, there are many more things you can do in Seattle to make your vacation an unforgettable one.

Explore and Experience the City of Squares – Cambridge

Frank Gehry building MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts

The name “Cambridge” evokes a mixed feeling of curiosity and reverence. As the mecca of knowledge, culture, and education, Cambridge welcomes visitors with a liberal atmosphere, scenic beauty, and an array of museums. If you believe in experiential traveling, explore Cambridge at your own pace.

Harvard University Walking Tour for History Buffs

Harvard University Walking Tour

Image via Flickr by 6SN7

A guided walking tour of the Harvard University campus can give you a detailed picture of this prestigious institution and the lifestyle of its students. Start your tour from the historic Harvard Yard, explore Harvard Square, which is the cultural and commercial heart of Cambridge, and then stop at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. If you want to catch up with the vibe of the city, Harvard Square is the place with bookstores, restaurants, coffee shops, street performances, and live theater.

Cambridge Bicycle Tour for Outdoor Lovers

Known as one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the USA, Cambridge is best explored by bike. Take a leisurely ride along the tree-lined avenues and explore the cultural districts at your own pace. Harvard Square, Central Square, and Kendall Square are some of the most appealing places in the city. Ride along the beautiful cycling pathways by the Charles River and enjoy the views all around. The cycling tours end at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

MIT and Harvard Art Museum for Art Enthusiasts

MIT, Cambridge, MA

Image via Flickr by ^ Johnny

MIT is located on the bank of the Charles River. The landscaped campus is dotted with amazing architecture and sculptures that are worth visiting. You can book a private group tour of the MIT campus. The tours, guided by MIT students and staff, are designed to give visitors deeper insight into the institution and its research and innovation.

The Harvard Art Museums comprise three museums — the Fogg Museum, the Busch-Reisinger Museum, and the Arthur M. Sackler Museum — and four research centers. With their extensive collection of modern, classical, and ancient works of art from across the globe, the Harvard Art Museums are well worth your time in Cambridge.

Charles River Cruising for Leisure Seekers

Charles River, cambridge

Image via Flickr by Leslee_atFlickr

The riverfront is landscaped with old trees, gardens, and walking trails. Take a stroll along the riverbank while soaking in the view of Boston skyline on the other side of the river. Go for a boat trip or go kayaking to add more fun to your leisure vacation in Cambridge. Charles River boat tours cover the city’s historical landmarks. As the boat sails along, enjoy the views of the twin cities, Cambridge and Boston, and watch as the sun sets beyond the urban landscape.

Mount Auburn Cemetery for Nature Lovers

Mt Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, MA

Image via Flickr by BostonPhotoSphere

Known to be America’s first landscaped cemetery, Mount Auburn Cemetery is also a wildlife sanctuary. With rolling fields dotted with ancient trees, ponds, and shrubs, this peaceful place is a haven for bird watchers. Fall is the best time to visit Cambridge if you want to experience its scenic beauty. This is also the time when the cemetery looks most appealing with colored foliage and verdant nature.

Walking and biking are, perhaps, the best ways to explore this city of squares. Hence, you should choose your hotel carefully. Centrally located hotels near Lesley University are within walking distance of many of the popular attractions. From rooms for $70 a night to luxurious four-star properties, there are accommodations to fit every budget.

How to Financially Prepare for Your Next Big Trip

Traveling can be very expensive, especially if it’s a really big trip. But that doesn’t need to stop you from taking your next adventure! There are ways that you can help to prepare financially so that you’re able to take that trip you’ve been dying to go on!

Create a consistent savings plan for traveling.

If you open a short-term recurring deposit account set aside specifically for your travels, you can save for trips a bit easier! If you have that money in a separate account, you won’t be tempted to spend it on other things, and you can use the money you accumulate in that account for your next expensive trip that you didn’t think you’d be able to afford. If long-term saving is not an option consider a low-interest personal loan. This way you can take the trip right away and start savings plan to pay off the loan without the crazy added interest of a credit card.

savings, money saving, travel fund, save money

Image: Flickr

Stay away from online shopping.

When you’re spending too much money on your online shopping addiction, it might also be hard to balance with your travel bug. Online shopping is such an easy way to drain your money quickly, mostly because it’s so easy to just click “buy” on your phone or computer.

To get rid of the urge to shop online, delete all the shopping apps from your phone, and unsubscribe from any promotional emails that may cause you to impulsively shop online. You can also clear your browser cache and cookies regularly to get rid of targeted advertising by e-commerce sites! No more late night shopping!

Control your expenditure by living a simpler life.

If traveling is your priority, try to understand the difference between “want” and “need”. You’re going to need to restrict your expenses if you really want to be able to afford the next trip you’re planning! Avoid eating at more expensive restaurants, and refrain from buying clothes you don’t need. Every time you go to buy something, ask yourself if you really need it, or if it’s just another impulse buy. Remind yourself that whatever money you would be spending on your wants could be going toward your next trip! Try to pick up a hobby that can help you get some extra cash, like freelance writing online!

With these tips, any trip is possible! Don’t let finances get in your way of your dream to travel! Now get saving, and happy traveling friends!

travel tips, savings, travel fund, savings for traveli


A Guest Post by Jamie Wharton

Jamie is a Social Media Strategist for Earnest. She has a passion for finance and enjoys educating others. Her main goal is to help build a brighter financial future while making finance friendly for everyone. When not working you can find Jamie surfing the web while sipping on her latte.

St. Louis in One Day

Nestled on the bank of the Mississippi River in Missouri, St. Louis is known as the Gateway to the West. After Washington, D.C., the city ranks second in terms of free tourist attractions. There are a lot of things to see in St. Louis. However, if you are short on time to explore the city, below are your options.

Gateway Arch and Mississippi Riverfront

gateway arch, st louis

Image via Flickr by Arch_Sam

The Gateway Arch is one of the most visited tourist attractions in St. Louis. The iconic stainless steel structure symbolizes the progress of St. Louis from an 18th-century European settlement to a modern metropolis. The 630-foot arch is built on the riverfront, dotted with gardens and tree-lined walkways. The area also provides access to a riverboat cruise, a popular mode of sightseeing in St. Louis.

Entry is free for children, while adults must pay a small fee. You can also buy a ticket to ride up to the observation area at the top of the arch for a 360-degree view of the city.

Museum of Westward Expansion and Old Courthouse

old courthouse, st louis, sightseeing

Image via Flickr by Missouri Division of Tourism

Only two blocks from the Arch, the Museum of Westward Expansion exhibits artifacts depicting the westward expansion of America and the stories of brave pioneers on the American frontier.

The Old Courthouse is located opposite the museum. The impressive traditional building was not only a house of justice in old times but also a commercial center in St. Louis. It witnessed many historic trials and verdicts that revolutionized American society. Entry is free for both places.

City Museum

city museum, st louis, sightseeing

Image via Flickr by Texas Tongs

St. Louis City Museum is a must-see, especially if you’re traveling with kids. This museum boasts an interior designed with repurposed architectural elements, making it a unique place. With activities like a walk through the Enchanted Cave, a five-story slide down the Shoe Shaft, or a crawl through a shark tank, City Museum promises to thrill and surprise.

City Garden

city garden, st louis

Image via Flickr by henskechristine 

St. Louis City Garden offers a refreshing escape in the heart of the bustling downtown. The garden is dotted with fountains and modern sculptures, keeping with the vibe of this progressive city.

The Waterfall Fountain has a pool, where you can take a splash in the water, sit on the rocks, or simply stroll around and see the sculptures depicting modern art. The park is open to visitors throughout the year, and entry is free.

Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis

Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis, church, st louis

Image via Flickr by plunkettb

Find a piece of Rome as you step into the premises of Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis. This Roman Catholic church is located in the Central West End area, a short drive from downtown.

Admire the splendor of the Romanesque architecture from the outside and marvel at the beautiful Byzantine and Italian mosaics inside. The church houses a museum in the basement. A docent-led tour can give you deeper insight into the history and architecture of the church.

Ballpark Village

ballpark village, st louis, shopping district

Image via Flickr by TexasExplorer98

With great dining, shopping, and nightlife options, Ballpark Village is a popular hangout in St. Louis. Adjacent to Busch Stadium on Clark Avenue, this entertainment district is the place to relax and hang around after a day of sightseeing. An array of retail shops, bars, and music venues is enough to keep you engaged throughout the evening.

For a short trip, it would be wise to choose from the hotels near downtown St. Louis, as many of the free attractions are within walking distance from the downtown hotels. If you have more time to spend in St. Louis, head toward Forest Park, a comprehensive entertainment zone that houses the St. Louis Zoo, Science Center, History Museum — all of which have free admission — and much more.

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The Daily Post Photo Challenge: The Farmer’s Friend

farmer going to field, bolpur, shantiniketan, rural life,

We say that a dog is a man’s best friend. However, in rural India, the picture is different. Here, the cow is considered to be a farmer’s friend. Many villagers earn their living by selling cow milk and dairy products in the market. Even cow dung is used as an organic fuel in the village homes.

It was a lovely morning in Shantiniketan, West Bengal. While I was wandering around, I saw this farmer going out for the fields with his quadruped friend.

farmer going to field, bolpur, shantiniketan, rural life,

Published in response to The Daily Post Photo Challenge: Friend.