Bali is like Hawaii minus the high price tag and the strip malls but major tourist spots like Kuta and Seminyak are regularly over-run by marauding bands of drunken tourists in high season. With a little exploration, you will find all kinds of hidden gems that are unlike anywhere else such as Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Candi Dasa and Sanur (or take a boat to the less developed paradise Lombok).
Finswimmers do not normally use snorkels with a sump valve, as they learn to blast clear the tube on most if not all exhalations, which keeps the water content in the tube to a minimum as the tube can be shaped for lower work of breathing, and elimination of water traps, allowing greater speed and lowering the stress of eventual swallowing of small quantities of water, which would impede their competition performance.
They are located north of Australia and east of Bali and offer stunning tropical scenery, a remarkable history, friendly villages, and some of the globe’s most pristine, biologically diverse coral reefs. The only way to reach them is to island-hop the Indonesian archipelago by small planes, ferry services, or eco-friendly cruises for serious divers but it is more than worth the trouble.
After a few minutes, the group decided to take a break and we walked south towards the pier. The surrounding area is filled with tourist shops, bars, tattoo parlors, and restaurants lined up and down the street adjacent to the beach. We continued towards the end of the street and climbed the steps leading to the pier. The pier was a massive boardwalk that led about a quarter of a mile out to the water. There were people fishing everywhere, some who have been there all day with several rods resting against the railing hoping to catch the big one. We spotted several artists selling their paintings as we walked by. Some of the pictures were abstract paintings while others were canvas paintings of the beach and various landmarks around town.
When it comes to shopping in OB, don't miss The Black, a smoke shop that is also a neighborhood institution. Kind of a head shop/novelty/record store, The Black is like going back in time to the hippie decade. Ocean Beach Antique Mall on Newport Avenue is where to go for unique vintage finds and home goods. Sunshine Daydreams is a little boho-chic clothing boutique, and the Black Bead is a mecca for jewelry hobbyists.
Northern California beaches. They tend to be cold and windy, and Ocean Beach is no exception. There are those glorious warm days that happen a few times per year in the Fall. If you choose this location for a photo shoot make sure that you wear layers at this location. And arm yourself with hair ties and clips, because it can get windy. Take it from me, a family photographer (K. Sienk Photography)! One cool feature that I really love about this beach as the graffiti on the walls towards the north end. Pros: Not crowded Parking is easy Large beautiful beach Cons: Windy Cold Not a lot of variety Great for: Family photo sessions, mini sessions, maternity sessions, milestone sessions in the first year, weekday and weekend sessions, toddlers who like to run around. Not good for: trying to avoid wind. www.ksienkphotography.com
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Anguilla is the eye candy of the northern Caribbean, and the stuff of dream vacation destinations. The tiny, flat island is ringed in powdery white sand beaches with sea-grape trees and coconut palms rustling in balmy trade winds and casting lazy shadows across the sand. Colorful shabby-chic beach bars and roadside grills abound, but this island is a swank, luxury destination as well.It’s easy to explore the island by either bike or car, and nearby cays are a short sail away. The Heritage Collection presents Anguilla’s boat-building history. Prickly Pear cay is perfect for a day of snorkeling and barbecue. Shoal Bay, ranked #1 in the world, offers a premier beach.
In a vast ocean dotted with infinite lagoons, perhaps the most striking of them all is to be found in Aitutaki. A short flight from the main island of Rarotonga brings you to a quiet little ‘half island half atoll’ – where nothing seems to happen and where the word ‘rush’ simple doesn’t exist. The main reasons to visit Aitutaki is to detach from the stresses of life and to explore its magical lagoon. Once you’ve completed a circle island tour on a rented scooter, head to the small motu (islets) that hug the outer reaches of the lagoon. Out here, you’ll snorkel in coral gardens and make landfall on beaches where fine white sand simply blinds your eyes on a sunny day. If you’ve always wondered where pictures of that perfect beach you see in travel magazines, posters and screensavers were taken – the answer probably lies in Aitutaki!
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Located on the eastern coast of Malaysia, the Perhentians consist of two islands. Both are stunningly covered with a lot of palm trees, wide beaches, and crystal blue water. There’s not much to do here, and visitors typically lay on the beach all day, resting from last night’s drinking. It’s the perfect place to put up a hammock. A strong monsoon season limits when to go to between March and October. During the other times, it’s best to head to Thailand, where the weather is nicer.
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