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9 Hidden Gems of Prague

9 Hidden Gems of Prague

If you’re looking to get away from some of the overcrowded and heavily populated areas of Prague, escape to some of these unique destinations that the city has to offer!

6 Places to Visit in New York City - and what to do while you're there

The Big Apple. The city so great they named it twice. New York, New York.

Made up of 5 boroughs, this city is captivating and inspiring. You’ll find restaurants, cafes and bars that offer unique experiences and the perfect Instagram opportunity. You’ll find hidden areas in Central Park and priceless works of art along Museum Mile. We’ve put together a go-to list of must-see sights for your next trip to New York City, including some hidden gems to see while you’re in certain areas!

 

1. THE HIGH LINE

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Opened in 2009, The High Line (or High Line Park) is an elevated park running along an old section of the New York Central Railroad line. At 1.45 miles long, it is fully lined by greenery, outdoor art and gorgeous city views. The High Line will give you an area to overlook the lower west side of Manhattan, all while providing areas to sit and enjoy a truly different look of the city.

While you’re there, walk down the steps and stop by the Chelsea Market for some fabulous food, yummy treats, and maybe even some live music. Chelsea is also home to some of the most renown art galleries, most with free admission. If you’re lucky enough to be there on a Thursday night, there may be a few gallery openings, so check beforehand!

 

2. MUSEUM MILE

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Attention art lovers: we have the place for you. Located on 5th Ave, from 82nd to 105th street, Museum Mile provides unlimited options for all things art. Including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Jewish Museum, the Museum of the City of New York, the National Academy Museum, Neue Galleria, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Cooper Pewit, National Design Museum, and El Museo del Barrio, Museum Mile will ensure that you never run out of choices. Do your research before to see which museums hold the art you’d like to see, because if you’re lucky enough to be there at the right time, you may even get free admission! Every June, Museum Mile Festival offers a night of free admission to most of the museums on Museum Mile and an artistic festival that lines 5th Ave.

Are you more into the history part of art history? While you’re there, you have the option to walk straight through Central Park to the west side where you’ll find the American Museum of Natural History.

 

3. TIMES SQUARE

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From street performances to protests, this commercialized tourist haven hosts some of the most artistically driven sights of the city. Local New-Yorkers may avoid this area at all costs, but it does have some must-see sights: the iconic intersection of Broadway and Seventh Avenue, the site of the New Year’s ball drop, the notable red steps above the TKTS ticket booth, famous stores and restaurants, and Broadway’s historic theaters, to name a few. Pro tip: You should definitely try to see a Broadway show while you’re here - if it’s not in the budget, most of the main shows have a raffle for tickets. Show up a few hours early to put your name into the raffle, and you may win two free tickets to a show like Hamilton or the Book of Mormon!

While you’re there, stop into Stardust Diner for a meal or a milkshake while aspiring Broadway performers sing classic hits to you. It’s the cheapest “almost Broadway” show you’ll see! If you’re looking for a fun and interactive way to break up your day, head down the street to Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum or Ripley’s: Believe It or Not Museum.

 

4. GRAND CENTRAL STATION

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If you take the train into the East side of Manhattan, you’ll most likely stop out at Grand Central Station, as this iconic landmark welcomes millions of commuters each week. And it isn’t called “grand” for no reason - Grand Central Station is an architectural revelation, with a blue-green cathedral ceiling in the main concourse giving you a view of the nighttime sky. You will also find office spaces, restaurants, and maybe a few secret areas…

While you’re there, check out one of the Grand Central Station mysteries: Whispering Gallery. An ordinary looking archway located in front of the Oyster Bar & Restaurant bears quite the secret. The architecture creates an acoustic wonder: when two people stand at diagonal arches and whisper, they can hear what the other said perfectly as if they were standing right next to each other!

 

5. CENTRAL PARK

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Yes, you’ve seen the opening span of Central Park at the beginning of most rom-coms, but it’s definitely worth the time to see all that the treetops cover. It’s perfect for a walk or run, a picnic while you people-watch, or a romantic boat ride on the Lake. Listen to the saxophone players or have your caricature drawn by an artist lining the gravel pathways throughout the park.

While you’re there, visit the Alice in Wonderland statue that was originally commissioned for the children of NYC. Also, be sure to take a moment to check the benches that you walk by - some of them have been commissioned by New Yorkers that condense their love stories into small quotes that have been transcribed onto plaques on the backs of the bench. Wander around the paths until you walk up to the Central Park Zoo to spot some sea lions, penguins, monkeys and more!

 

6. ROCKEFELLER CENTER

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An expansive area made up of 19 buildings between 48th and 51st Street, facing 5th Ave, this Art Deco-inspired complex is home to Saturday Night Live, the Today Show taping, the famous Christmas tree lighting, a winter ice-skating rink, and many more iconic attractions. It’s an area to mark on your list, especially if you’re visiting during winter. Just make sure you bundle up!

While you’re there, head to the tallest building in the plaza - 30 Rockefeller Plaza, or 30 Rock for short. It is home of NBC, so if you’re lucky, you might get tickets to see a live recording of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Late Night with Seth Meyers or even Saturday Night Live. On the 70th-floor, you’ll find “Top of the Rock,” an observation deck with views of Central Park and the Empire State Building. It costs $39, but it may be one of the best views you come across in New York City, so don’t miss out!

10 Things To Do in SYDNEY for the Outdoors Type

Only have limited time in Sydney on your trip and want to make the most of the outdoors? Check out the below - 10 things to do when outside in and around Sydney!

1. Harbour Bridge Climb

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You all know the Sydney Harbour Bridge, one of the most iconic landmarks in Sydney with its amazing arching iron structure boldly taking your eye away from everything but itself. You can drive over it, walk over it and even climb over it! Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb is definitely an activity to add to the list. It has different times throughout the day for you to experience the spectacular views over Sydney’s city skyline and sparkling harbour.

The twilight session is one of the best times to head up the bridge as you get to enjoy the sunshine during the climb up, watch the sunset from the top and enjoy the stunning city lights on the descent. You also get your picture taken at the top, which you can purchase once you get back to the bottom. Such a cool keepsake!

2. Bronte to Bondi Coastal Walk

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Sydney has some of the best beaches in the world and this is a fantastic way to take in the breathtaking landscape views from beach level and above on the cliffs. You can either go from Bondi to Bronte or Bronte to Bondi, it doesn’t matter! Either way there are fantastic cafes on either end where you can have a post walk smoothie or coffee.

The walk takes you around through Tamarama Beach and along winding paths along the cliff faces. If you go around October/November an event called Sculpture by the Sea will be on where local artists create a masterpiece and have it on display along the walk. A very cool event to see and each year shows different art pieces that will blow you away.

3. Ferry Ride from Circular Quay to Manly

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Ferries are a very popular mode of transport for commuters to get to and from work but its also a beautiful way of taking in Sydney’s Harbour with amazing houses, boats and little coves along the way. See if you can spot the Prime Minister’s house!

Anytime of day is great to get on the ferry but if you are a sunset fanatic, you can get amazing views of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House with the spectacular colours pink, orange and yellow dancing across the sky.

4. Go Surfing 

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Always wanted to learn surfing, to be one of the cool guys sitting on their boards out in the ocean waiting for the mother wave? Or love being out in the surf for hours on end during summer? As mentioned already Sydney has some of the best beaches in the world and many of these are fantastic for surfing. The most common beaches for surfing in Sydney include Manly, Bondi, Curl Curl, and Freshwater beach.

If you want to learn how to surf the following beaches are the best; Palm beach, Long Reef beach (part of Dee Why), Manly beach and Bondi beach. There are surf schools everywhere eagerly waiting to show you the ropes…or should I say waves!

5. Visit Taronga Zoo

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Take a ferry from Circular Quay across to Taronga Zoo for the day. This amazing zoo has a large variety of animals from Australia & around the world and they are just waiting for you to stop by and say hello. If you want to splurge on your trip to the zoo you can actually stay overnight in their awesome package ‘Roar and Snore’.

Included in the roar and snore package is a night safari, getting you up close & personal with some friendly creatures and a beautiful dinner/breakfast. Waking up in your own private tent with a view over the city is a pretty cool experience to be a part of.

6. Go White Water Rafting

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Yes you can go whitewater rafting in Sydney! Located in Penrith at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games site, you can whitewater raft or kayak in the only man-made river of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.

Available from September to June, jump on the guided rafting for 90 minutes and try your best to stay afloat! An awesome day out when it is sunny and hot…just what you expect from an Australian Summer.

7. Hire a bike

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There are various bike rentals dotted all over the city available for hire to ride anywhere you want but one place in particular that is a treat to ride through is Centennial Parklands, only 4kms from the city centre.

Centennial Parklands has approximately 3kms of cycling path for you to enjoy, (don’t worry it is all mostly flat). You will be greeted by other cyclists, runners and families out on their daily walks enjoying the ponds, beautiful flowerbeds and an array of birds and wild ducks. If you get thirsty on your cycle there is a café where you can grab a coffee or cold beverage, maybe even a slice of yummy banana bread.

8. Kayak or stand-up paddleboard at Pittwater

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For the best kayak or paddleboard experience head to Pittwater, at the edge of the Ku-ring-gai National Park, only 40 minutes from Sydney’s centre. You can choose the right type of kayak or SUP (stand-up paddleboard) to suit your needs and also how long you want to hire it for with various options available to you.

An awesome aspect about hiring here is that the water is still and best suited for these types of activities. You also get given a map to help you maneuver your way through the waterways, and to help you get back to the hire shed!

9. Have a picnic in Hyde Park

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Who doesn’t love a picnic! Head to the local supermarket and grab all your favourites, including a picnic blanket, and head to Hyde Park, Australia’s oldest Park. Located right in the city, Hyde Park boasts beautiful big shady trees, stunning water features and acres of lush grass perfect for setting up your picnic.

A great spot for people watching, you will see people commuting to and from work, sunbathing in their lunch breaks and tourists marvelling at the amazing greenery and memorial statues that surround them. Take your book, your snacks and don’t forget your sunnies! 

10. Take a bush walk through Wentworth Falls (Blue Mountains)

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Wentworth Falls is located in the Blue Mountains, approximately 1.5 hours from Sydney’s centre. If you love hiking you will love the great walking paths and the stunning waterfalls. Two paths will give you the best views of  the waterfalls and they are Weeping Rock and Fletchers lookout so these are a definite must on your trip. Make sure to take water and some snacks!

---> Courtesy of Hannah Pigram @thetravellingaus <---

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