Some of the most relaxing vacations mean finding a secluded spot where you can unplug from the stress of modern life. The Cook Islands is a secluded paradise with welcoming people, great dancers, drummers and singers, with strong Polynesian traditions and culture that make visiting the islands so memorable. The largest island and the home of the capital Avarua, is Rarotonga. Avarua is famous for its fascinating churches made of white coral, and don’t miss the islands Saturday market. Northeast of Rarotonga, visitors to Atiu may want to learn about the local “moonshine” known as tumunu at a local bush beer school. Neighboring Mitiaro stands in water 14,750 feet deep and has white coral streets lined with bright orange Pumarumaru trees. Although it is surrounded by coral reefs and is home to many underground caves and lakes, Ma’uke is known as “the garden island.” Finally, the second largest and oldest island is Mangaia, a beautiful location known for its fossilized coral, otherwise known as “makatea.”
The Island’s capital San Juan is rich in history and architecture, and is full of great restaurants, casinos and quaint beach bars. The diversity of available activities makes Puerto Rico a great family vacation destination. If you are looking for affordable tropical vacations, Puerto Rico is one of the best tropical islands to visit from the East Coast. Best tropical vacations: Best Things to Do in San Juan, Puerto Rico
If you desire something a bit more mellow and authentic, the beach towns in the spectacular state of Kerala are worth exploring. I’ve heard good things about the beach town of Varkala, which has beautiful beaches and soaring cliffs. If you want to relax and really explore your inner world through meditation, I recommend spending some time in an ashram in Rishikesh or Dharamsala.
In many ways, it's kind of a quiet sleepy place that time forgot. It's one of the few places left in San Diego (or the rest of the country for that matter) where the shops are locally owned and managed, for the most part. Some places would welcome a Starbucks or a Target, but for many OBecians this is cause for concern. In a world that is rapidly homogenizing, Ocean Beach stands proud as one of the last real beach towns left in California, and much of that uniqueness stems from all the independent shops and mom-n-pop restaurants in our little town.
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