Sport and Leisure Activities in Cyprus – Travel and Leisure

Cyprus enjoys all year round sunshine making it perfect for indulging in your favourite activities during your holidays. Activities include golf, diving, sailing, hiking, cycling and many more.GolfCyprus has three international standard 18 hole golf courses. Located in the Paphos region, these courses are situated in the peaceful landscaped hills offering amazing views across the Mediterranean Sea. Although these courses are set away from the main tourist resorts, they are still near enough for easy access.Popular courses include the award winning Aphrodite Hills, Elea Golf Club, Minthis Hills which sits between the orchards and vineyards of a 12th century monastery and the Secret Valley Golf Course which is located near the legendary birthplace of Aphrodite.DivingThe island is blessed with crystal clear warm waters which are ideal for diving. With sea temperatures ranging from 16C to 27C around the island Cyprus offers the longest diving seasons in the Mediterranean. Divers will see an amazing array of brightly coloured fish, coral, sponges, sea anemones, octopus and sea urchins as they dive to the spectacular coastal reefs. The island runs a turtle conservation project, thanks to which has increased the number of sea turtles around the island. Cyprus has many underwater caves and tunnels just waiting to be explored.Popular sites include the Amphitheatre Diving Site, the Three Stars Wreck Diving Site, the Green Bay Diving Site (an ancient ship wreck) and the Akrotiri Reserve Diving Site.SailingWhilst on your cheap package holidays to this amazing island, charter a boat for the day and be spoilt by the ships crew as you sail along the beautiful Cypriot coastline. The island has many secluded bays that only accessible by boat where you can stop off to sunbathe on the beach and enjoy a dip in the crysal blue waters. For the more adventurous spend a day deep sea fishing.Cyprus has two marinas and five ports. Larnaca Marina has 450 berths and attracts yachts from all over the world, especially in the winter when people live on their boats whilst docked in the marina.HikingHiking is an excellent way to discover Cyprus. There are lots of nature trails and signposted paths to suit all levels of hikers, from easy walking to more challenging walks. The spring is considered to be the best time for hiking when the island is just coming into bloom.Hiking in the Troodos Mountains and the Akamas Peninsula is very popular along with the Cyprus Section of the European Walking Route E4. This section takes you from Larnaca Airport to Paphos Airport, passing through Cape Gkreko, up the Troodos Mountains and down to the Akamas region.CyclingCyprus has many cycling routes or the more adventurous can make up their own. Cycling around the island enables you to visit secluded coves, ancient ruins and amazing landscape that you would probably miss if you were travelling by car.The Cyprus Cycling Federation organises competitions throughout the year, mainly in the spring. These events are suitable for all levels of riders from leisure and fun riders to elite riders.To enjoy some great Cypriot hospitality, top class accommodation, amazing beaches and a wealth of nature, history and culture look out for the many last minute holidays that are always available to the beautiful island of Cyrus.

Travel Fishing – Combine Business and Leisure – Travel and Leisure

Multi-tasking is no easy assignment for most of us mere male’s. Just ask our better halves! To adopt the skill, particularly when travelling, will result in substantial reward. Consider business travel, so many of us have or do travel for work yet how many times have you found yourself missing out on an opportunity because ‘you’re there to work’!Certain leisure activities are considered serious business and go hand in hand with business travel, like playing a round of golf for example. Game or Sport Fishing is no different and can be easily factored into your business travel plans. In fact, a shared experience on the water could go a long way in assisting to seal a deal!By planning ahead the canny business traveler could include an additional day or two in their itinerary. The “Do Not Disturb!” sign on the hotel room door wondrously transforms into “Gone Fishing!” All that’s required from this point is one or two reasonable excuses. “I am unlikely to have time to check messages”, or “The mobile phone range is poor in the area”.Do your homework prior to departure. Insurance is a pre-requisite for charter boats in most destinations. Ask the operators if they have insurance and review your own policy to ensure it provides cover for maritime accidents or loss. It will pay to ask around when you arrive, identify the operators who have the best reputations.Your hotels concierge is likely to possess a wealth of useful knowledge, it’s their job to be informed. Charter operators often work directly with hotels and travel agents. As a valued guest there is a very high probability of success when using the hotels information networks and you will almost certainly be directed to a known and reliable operator.Deep-sea fishing has a devoted following in most destinations around the globe but it is certainly more prominent in some locations than others. Specialized travel fishing websites offer target specific information designed to inform travelers of the range of options available to them in a particular area.If your interest is in the Asia-Pacific region sites like www.http://sportfishin.asia/ will tell you where to fish in say Thailand of Cambodia and whether you’re likely to catch pelagic species such as Wahoo or Tuna or something else entirely.Operators of fishing charters welcome novices and experienced anglers alike. A business travel group may consist of several fishing enthusiasts but there is always a beginner in nearly every group. The novice will likely be taken under the wing of a crew member or an experienced companion so you don’t have to be an expert to enjoy an opportunity to fish.Unlike golf of tennis, deep-sea fishing is usually learned “on-the-go”. Equipment will be provided so all the angler has to do is turn up and fish. Costs vary considerably. From around US$450/day a small group can hire a boat with the skipper and a crewman. Simply joining a charter boat for a day’s fishing is much cheaper. This option will start from around $75/day including lunch. Medium size charter boats generally operate with around 8 – 10 passengers.A typical days catch in the Asia-Pacific region may include billfish such as marlin or sailfish, Wahoo, dolphin fish (mahi-mahi), mackerel, trevally and tuna. A well-organized charter operator will target the strongest fighting fish with the right tackle. A 2kg tuna will offer a good fight for a novice angler with the appropriate tackle and gear.Business travelers looking to arrange a day or two’s fishing in Australia can find a wealth of information at www.fishnet.com.au. Likely catches include southern bluefin tuna, a variety of snapper (Victoria and West Australia), billfish (Queensland and New South Wales), and the renowned barramundi (Queensland, West Australia and The Northern Territory).Barramundi are found in the tropical north in mangrove lined estuaries and rivers. Travelers come from all over the world to fish for barramundi, especially from Asia. Growing to over a meter in length, barramundi are a prized table fish and a whole lot of fun to catch.For further fishing specific information relating to your next business destination I recommend further investigation of the following websites:Wahoo Big Game Fishing (Thailand)
Sportfishing Bali (Bali):
Borcay Sun (Philippines)
Fishnet (Australia)

Ireland West Offers Wonderful Scenery and Leisure Opportunities – Travel and Leisure

Galway and Mayo and Donegal are the two largest counties in the Ireland West region and Donegal has the longest coastline in Ireland giving it two outstanding features that make it stand out from most other counties – magnificent beaches and one of the best surfing climate and areas in the world. The beaches, vast and desolate in many cases, are the best in all of Ireland and to add to the seaside attractions that go with them are many magnificent links golf courses such as Ballyliffen with its two courses on the Inishowen Peninsula and Murvagh in South Donegal. The powerful Atlantic Ocean currents and rugged coastline create a natural combination of forces to produce the best surfing opportunities possible and thousands of avid participants visit every year. Add in the magnificent Glenveigh National Park, The Rosses, Dungloe and Letterkenny, the county town and visiting Donegal is more akin to a trip to another country.Sligo has a small coastline and Leitrim, to the surprise of many, actually has 10 kilometre coastline, wedged between Sligo and Donegal. What it lacks in size, Roscommon and Leitrim make up for their lack of seaside frontage by having wonderful lake and river amenities. In Leitrim, places such as Glencar Lake and Waterfall, along with the attractive bustling Carrick-on-Shannon make the least populated county in Ireland a treat to visit. Neighbouring Roscommon has the stunning Curlew Mountains and the vast and breathtaking Lough Key Lake and Forest Park, near the town of Boyle.By far the most famous area in the region is Connemara, a vast area of outstanding and breathtaking natural beauty that attracts millions of visitors every year. Most of the Connemara area is situated in County Galway but to the north it stretches up to Louisburgh in County Mayo, west of Westport. The capital of Connemara is Clifden, some 80 kilometres west of the city of Galway. This wonderful vibrating town, so full of character, epitomises the laid back mentality of the western Irish people that so endears them to visitors. Here there is no hurry. Haste is not a word that enters the local vocabulary, most of which is spoken in Gaelic native tongue. Even if you could understand them, there is still no hurry!Connemara has everything to offer from lakes and mountains, golf fishing, horse riding, adventure centres and the stunning Connemara National Park, home to such a variety of wildlife and nature.Galway City is the capital of the West of Ireland and noted as the most fun place in Ireland, ahead of even Dublin the capital city of the country. Festivals are a full time occupation in Galway, it seems. Every week in the summer months there is something different on with the most famous of many events being the Galway Races held in July/August every year. The seven day festival attracts hundreds of thousands, many with not the slightest interest in racing; there just for all the other side shows and what the Irish know as the craic!Other festivals include the world-renowned Arts Festival and two Oyster Festivals along with a noted drama Festival. The compact centre of Galway offers great shopping restaurants and most of all great pubs to quench the thirst and enjoy the company.County Mayo, whilst not being as populated as Galway, nonetheless offers a magnificent choice of scenery, towns and activities. Castlebar is the county town capital, a modern thriving town that is the gateway to west of the county. The most noteworthy town however is not the biggest, but definitely the most beautiful.Westport has the distinction of being the only town in Ireland architecturally designed and the place is gorgeous. Winner of the Irish Tidy Towns on numerous occasions, it is a great base to explore all of Mayo, but particularly the southern part of the county and Achill and Clare islands. Achill has a bridge to access it but Clare Island, sparsely inhabited, can only be reached by boat. Westport offers everything from superb accommodation and a host of leisure activities to a great choice of culinary excellence to satisfy all budgets. It is location of one the most famous mountains in Ireland, Croagh Patrick, just west of the town. Named after Saint Patrick who founded a church at its summit, the mountain attracts visitors all year round but particularly on what is known as “Reek Sunday” when thousand partake in a pilgrimage to the top where Mass is celebrated. From here you have outstanding views of Clew Bay and the reputed 365 islands that are situated in it.Further north, Ballina is the second largest town in Mayo and is a busy market town that is perfectly located for the pursuit of the rich fishing lakes that surround it. It is a ideal base for exploring the north Mayo coast where one can find exceptional links golf courses, such as Carne/Belmullet Golf Club. Don’t forget to take in the wonderful sights of the megalithic Ceide Fields for a unique look into the past.

Family Holidays and Leisure Planning Made Simple – Travel and Leisure

The important advantage of selecting to stay in a villa is space. Because children have sufficient room to play, and it even contains swimming pool and garden. The entire family can spend their nice time in villa. Here each person in the family can find their own way of relaxing and comfortable space.Here people will not have to fight with one another for the remote control, murmuring in the balcony when the power is out, no gossiping on each other. Elder people also can enjoy the facilities of the villa. Parents will be having fun activities every evening in villa. Finally people won’t find any kind of irritation from the services of villa.Kitchen facilities are also available in villa in order to give the families absolute control over the food and the meal times. Food is a major problem that all the families face when they travel with small children. The kitchens in villa are equipped and if people demand they will provide chefs also. They will allow parents to prepare food to their children; here servants are also available to help the family members. Each villa will be examined and repaired daily. People can spend their time as in one’s own home.Almost all holiday villas offer high quality chairs and cots as standard; this will be like a hotel of good standards. Villa managers will arrange for a family tour or an outing with full range to the families who stay in the villa, people can also make use of this and spend their time in beautiful destinations.Villa provides all the facilities that people require to spend their holidays. Here convenient stores like market are also present in order to make sure that emergency necessities are provided. Finally villa staff will take care of everything to all the visitors who comes to spend their holidays.

Travel and Learn – Travel and Leisure

Many of us dream to travel the world when we grow up. To see what life looks like beyond the figments of our imagination. To see a new place, explore and experience.Practically speaking, it is impossible to go around the world in a lifetime. For most of us, this dream remains only a dream because as we grow older, we also find that our priorities change. The little of the world we have seen beyond our homes remain only the few places we have ventured out to, for studies, work, or health care and hardly leisure.Afterwards, travelling becomes a luxury that only rich people with time can afford. We could be fond of travelling, but even that becomes a not-good-enough-reason to pick a suitcase and go somewhere just like that. We are battling against time and money, priorities and families- the process which is likely to go on till we age and are no longer eager to see that new place anymore.This, however, does not necessarily mean that we cannot travel anymore in the positions we are placed. After all, it’s all in the mind. As Henry Ford has said, “If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.”It may be impossible for all of us catch an international flight and go abroad, or for that matter, even visit a city outside the state for leisure. But who says only those places are worth travelling to? I have always observed with wonder children and teenagers who come to bigger towns for the first time from far flung rural areas. It is magical to see in their eyes, the sheer wonder of spotting magnificent buildings in the town, even as they try to count the cars passing by.It leaves me with a nice feeling. I think it is joy that they express in their faces. The joy of travelling. Because there is always an element of surprise in a new place, and I think they feel and experience that. It maybe no big deal for town dwellers, but it is for them, who can even count the number of vehicles visiting their villages in a year, and suddenly, they see hundreds of them swarming the road.We must travel to learn and widen our thoughts. Especially young people must travel as much as they can, whenever they can. Because one can only have that youthful zest when we are young. We are also open to more ideas, and willing to learn when we are young. And also because, youth is fleeting and it is only once that we get to be young.Travel. Not necessarily to big cities in the country, but to wherever you can. How wonderful that we can learn and enjoy each other’s culture, provided, we step out of our comfort zones; meet new people, learn new things, simply experience the joy of travelling.We must travel because unless we do, we never know how blessed we are. We never know the random kindness of those people we call our own unless we venture out to feel and experience it. But above all, take chances to travel because there are some insights that only travelling can teach us.

Fire Pits and Leisure Time – Travel and Leisure

Outdoor fires have been used for warmth and cooking since people discovered fire. Fire used to be the only means for keeping warm and cooking food. It was a necessity. Today, fires are often built for pleasure. They are used for warmth and cooking by choice. People who are enjoying some leisure time at home, spending part of a day away from home or traveling on vacation will take pleasure in sitting around an outdoor fire.Fire pits and outdoor fireplaces are often used at people’s homes for leisure activities. These activities may include relaxing around the fire or cooking for a party. A large amount of food can be cooked at once. Fire pits are frequently used while entertaining. Some of the built in types are designed with seating around them to accommodate guests. Folding chairs and other types of portable seating can also be used.Fire pits can also be enjoyed while engaging in leisure activities close to home. Portable types can be used in some outdoor areas. It is advisable to check local regulations regarding their use before using a portable one away from home. Many parks and beaches have built in pits. Some restaurants and bars have them in their outdoor seating areas.Travelers on overnight trips can find places where they will be able to enjoy fire pits. Some hotels have them in public areas for all guests in the hotel to use. Others that are provided by hotels are close to guest rooms and only for the use of the guests in those rooms. Campers will find them at some campgrounds. They may also be able to bring portable ones to use at the campgrounds. A temporary fire pit can be made out of rocks.Fire pits can be used during most of the year in many climates for cooking or warmth. They can be used to cook food outside even during cold weather. They will provide warmth for outdoor gatherings during the colder months of the year. The different types can make leisure time at home more relaxing and make travel more pleasant.

France – Paris and Beyond – Travel and Leisure

France is well known for its wine, cuisine, language and culture. In fact, many books and movies have been written to give us all a glimpse of Paris, known around the world as the city of lights. But France goes beyond Paris and its metropolitan way of life – France is nature and countryside, France is hospitality and landscape, France is relaxation and fun. There are many unexplored regions in France that offer a little bit more to those looking for cozy and quaint places.Where to Go?Known for its monuments and museums, Paris is the most visited city in the world. It’s Eiffel Tower is recognized as one of the most beautiful structures around the globe. Paris is also a very accessible city. In fact, you can take the metro to all the touristic destinations such as Notre-Dame cathedral, the Arc de Triomphe, or the Grande Arche de la Défense. There are also plenty of museums to visit such as The Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, the Musée Picasso, Musée Rodin, Musée Carnavalet, Musée Marmottan and the Arab Institute, just to name a few.From Paris, take the TGV train to the Loire Valley in the west of France. The Loire Valley is rich with meandering streams, majestic oaks, quiet roads, and lush green countryside. This region offers plenty of sports and leisure activities. The cities of Orleans and Tours, popular in this region, are known for its beautiful restaurants, inns and hotels on quaint cobblestone streets.The north of France is lined with sandy beaches that border the Atlantic ocean. England can be reached through the Eurotunnel that runs from Calais/Coquelles to Folkestone, England. The ride lasts 35 minutes and departs every day approximately 4 times per hour. The Nord/Pas-de-Calais region consists of contrasting forests, gentle meadows, and rolling hills in the expansive countryside. Lille is the major city in the region and home to fine arts museums, the 17th century stock exchange, gothic churches and business schools such as ESC-Lille and Edhec.Travel east – 90 minutes from Paris – and you will find Champagne, a region known for (you guessed it!) its champagne. Multiple tours to vineyards and champagne production sites outside of Reims are available. Burgundy, also 90 minutes from Paris, is known for its famous wine, architecture and colorful roofs. Burgundy’s major city is known for being the birthplace of a popular type of mustard: Dijon.The southwest of France is an area rich in history. Bordeaux in Aquataine is well known for its wine production, but Aquataine is known for being the center of a conflict between the French and English that lasted several centuries. Today, the fortified villages and castles built during this time have become major area destinations. Besides vineyards, Bordeaux offers plenty of cultural events such as theater and music festivals.Situated between the Alps and the Mediterranean sea, the region of Provence-Alps-Côte d’Azur is a must-see place in the south of France. Here you will find Marseille, an active port with a lively local atmosphere; Avignon, a blissful town of cafés, art galleries and fashionable shops; Aix-en-Provence, a university town filled with students; St. Tropez, famous for its glamour and beauty; and Montpelier, a bubbly and beautiful university town with town squares and mansions.The French Riviera, internationally known for the festival of Cannes, provides visitors with exciting party towns such as Nice and Cannes, and quieter areas such as Beaulieu, Menton or Cap Ferrat. Grasse, the perfume capital of the world, offers tours that allow visitors to learn how perfumes are made.Where to Study? France has more than 250 universities and specialized schools of engineering, management, arts, and design. It is also one of the top destinations for high school and college students studying abroad. France is also home to a few American universities: The American University of Paris, Schiller International University and The American Graduate School of International Relations and Diplomacy. Check out So You Want to Study in France for more information.Visas & Documents Visas for stays of no more than 3 months are required by all except EU/EEA nationals and citizens from Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, United States, United Kingdom and other countries. A uniform type of visa, the Schengen visa, is issued for tourist, business and private visits. All visas cost either US$44 (short stay; up to 90 days) or US$64 (long stay). For more information, contact the French embassy or consulate in your country.

Travel Trends In 2011 – Traditional 2 Week Vacation To Return – Travel and Leisure

Back in the eighties vacations were an established part of the calendar for many families – invariably it was taken in August, would last a couple of weeks, and it would be the next year before the routine came up on the calendar again – often to the same destination, and more often than not at same hotel, guesthouse or villa.More recently with cheaper travel and low-cost, more leisure time, easy to find credit and a booming economy the vacations industry was transformed in the nineties and changed to adapt to what tourists expected.The start of the internet and subsequent use by the masses made going abroad easier as well, suddenly people were able to become their own travel agency and could look at all the bargains from their their own home or workplace to tailor make their ideal vacation.Looking at what an area had to offer became possible too, making days out easier to plan, and if for instance you were booking Menorca holidays it was no longer was a daily newspaper’s around the globe weather section as the main source of information and overall an array of internet sites allowed the holidaymaker to be well informed of what was available locally.Looking back to how things used to be, the biggest change that came with lower cost travel was the possibility of having more than one vacation a year, often for just a weekend or for a few nights, allowing people to enjoy various locations at various times of the year.No longer was the annual two week holiday the norm. A weekend in Milan or Venice? A week in the winter to one of the Canary Islands? With low cost flights and hotels remaining open throughout the winter all of this became possible, and the travel market truly changed from the previous decades.A combination of two, three, seven and ten night trips away became commonplace, and often people would be taking three or four trips a year, discovering places they had never visited before while still visiting destinations they had liked in the past.However this new found freedom to experience the world came to a crashing halt when Lehman Brothers went under in September 2008, starting the banking crises that sent shock waves through the world’s economy – and the holiday market that had been doing so well hit recessionary times.Many families – but not all – have had to reduce their travel spending since then, with some having ‘staycations’, while some have had to cut the number of trips they were enjoying from three or four to just one or two, and with the world economy still uncertain a return to the once a year two weeks is one of the trends predicted by many in the travel industry for 2011.But it isn’t necessary bad news for the Spanish island of Menorca, which is a family orientated destination and the quietest of the Balearic Islands, which at the same time offers family attractions for days outs, with accommodation at her hotels enjoying a good reputation and an overall picture of a good Mediterranean location for a holiday.And for those who like somewhere that is more of a home from home, there is a good choice of villas available in the different towns and villages including Cala En Porter, Cala’n Bosch, Binibeca and Son Bou, available for one or two weeks stay, and many of the villa companies include flights to Menorca plus if wanted auto hire too.2011 might well see the return of the fourteen night holiday, and it could be a trend that will benefit the island’s economy which relies a lot on tourism.

Satisfy Your Wanderlust With a Bangkok Travel Itinerary – Travel and Leisure

A one-night Bangkok travel itinerary is not enough to explore all that this city has to offer. Every Bangkok traveler setting foot on Thailand’s soil will definitely have to move around in his outdoor shoes or flip flops, whichever is preferred. Bangkok travel tourist sights include the peaceful havens found in their river markets and the golden Buddha-filled temples scattered across the city. Its modern face shows itself in the form of high-rise buildings and infrastructure.If you are planning your own Bangkok travel itinerary, be sure to visit our listings. It is a Bangkok travel directory where you will find all the contact information you may need during your stay to include accommodation, entertainment and leisure, shopping, health and medical establishments, restaurants, Bangkok travel options, and many more. You will find a comprehensive list of just about anything in this website including any kind of Bangkok travel tour packages you may fancy.Up on the list of fun activities to enjoy in Bangkok is sightseeing. Bangkok is a visual extravaganza for tourists with attractions at nearly every corner. There are numerous intricate temples, landmarks and monuments, canal rides and river markets, most interesting zoos and amusement parks. When night falls, the city sizzles in entertainment with countless girlie bars blasting with electronic music as well as fine dine Bangkok restaurants. If you would like to move out of the urban areas, you can find car hire services to take you to the beautiful beaches of Thailand such as Patong Beach in Phuket. A Bangkok travel itinerary is not complete without this side trip to one of the best beaches in the world.One thing a traveler should not miss in his Bangkok travel itinerary is the food. Thai cuisine has earned a reputable spot as one of the most delicious cuisines in the world; from its street food to the fancier fine dine Bangkok restaurants that line its busiest streets. Bangkok restaurants highlight a wide array of gastronomic delight to include noodles, fruits, curries, barbecues and grills, and even fried insects! For the finer palate, choose among the many popular Bangkok restaurants in the city. Book your reservations in those quality Bangkok restaurants listed in the directory that include local phone numbers for easy reference.

Adventure & Leisure Travel – Travel and Leisure

Ecotourism is an often quoted but much misunderstood term.To understand the term “ecology” we must hark back to the words of Eugene Odum, the grandfather o f Ecology to understand its perspective. Odum referred to it as “An ecosystem is a unit of biological organisation interacting with the physical environment such that the flow of energy and mass leads to a characteristic tropic structure and material cycles.”Simply put, it means “units or systems that exist in their natural state drawing on the sustained energy and balance of the environment in which they establish themselves and grow”.To understand ecotourism in the present day context is a little more complicated. An ecological system should be that unit irrespective of its size or location that can sustain and survive in its natural elements, without any undue interference that can upset the balance of its very existence.The trend of tourist destinations and holiday spots with focus on peace and sanctity of the environment is fast catching up in today’s world, where so much of the emphasis is on accelerated lifestyles in which we strive to make time to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Days, weeks and months of living in constant disharmony with our surroundings and ourselves makes one yearn for quality time in quiet, peaceful places where the sounds of everyday life do not permeate. In this context, ecotourism attains immense relevance to mankind, as a whole.From a purely personal point of view, a tourist destination should be one that enhances your physical, mental and spiritual well being in a purely uplifting way. Plush lodges and resorts with all the trappings of 7-star or 5-star luxury in forests, jungles and bio reserves do not deserve to be classified as promoting ecotourism. It may be good for the big bucks to roll in but definitely a no-no when ecology and tourism have to co-exist. After all, you take a holiday to refresh your body and mind and seek a place that is different in many ways – why do you need the same trappings of city life to do that? Where the aim of promoting little known destinations to the world at large clashes with sustaining an environment in its unspoilt characteristics, simply promoting tourism with the sole aim of enticing people to wallow in unimaginable luxury is a lost cause altogether.Holidaymakers and tourist wishing to visit eco tourist destinations and spots should be encouraged not to expect luxurious and immaculate surroundings when they arrive. The emphasis should be on riding the rough with the smooth, to expect the unexpected albeit in a stimulating way, and to enjoy doing things differently. Increasingly, you hear of holidays talked about along the same lines as the purchase of a new car or the latest mobile phone or any of the multitudes of electronic goods that are in the market. The essence of the holiday does not mean so much to these note exchangers as the mode of travel, the place of stay and the food you eat. It is a tremendous exercise for the techno geeks to be away from their laptops, Blackberries, iPods and whatever else constitutes, to “making communication snappier”, as they would say.I scour the newspapers for articles on tourist destinations and nothing grabs my attention more than write-ups and pictures of little nooks and places in unheard of parts of the world. India has such a vast diversity of holiday locations but come holiday time and the entire world wants to visit the usual run of the mill places that are fast becoming overcrowded, polluted and not so enjoyable. Perhaps it is because they would like holidays also to fit into the slot of “well planned and organized” and any pretension to “expecting the unexpected” does not charm these holiday makers.But, there are perceptible changes that are becoming fast evident. It is not uncommon and least surprising to see individuals or groups of like minded youngsters coming together to customize holidays that suit their “style”. Weekend getaways, jungle treks, photo shoots, biking trips and camping out are getting nods of approval from a burgeoning population that is looking for newer and innovative ways to rejuvenate body and mind from the harsh realities of professional life. The higher the element of surprise and discovery; more the contentment guaranteed.Travel has truly received a remarkable makeover; the mode of travel and the route taking precedence over the destination itself. Leisure activities too have metamorphosed in challenging ways and if you’re even slightly faint-hearted without adrenalin pumping into you to give you the sense of adventure and of the unknown, your holiday may well be doomed before it begins.