The gateway to this proud and independent Polynesian island nation, Upolu packs in something for everyone. It’s that stereotypical tropical island – where waterfalls seem to be cascading from everywhere, where white and black sand beaches are a thing of the norm, and where the unique Samoan culture can be experienced firsthand. It’s also one of the most affordable South Pacific destinations – as simple or as luxurious as you want it to be. From the colorful markets of its capital city Apia, to the laid back beach fale accommodations on the dreamiest of its beaches, to the natural pools that appear as if taken straight out of a fairytale – your vivid memories of beautiful Samoa will last for eternity.
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The skirt of the diving mask attached to the snorkel is made of rubber, or latterly silicone. Older-generation snorkel masks come with a single oval, round or triangular lens retained by a metal clamp in a groove within the body of the mask. An adjustable head strap or harness ensures a snug fit on the wearer's face. The body of a mask with full-face coverage is fitted with a chinpiece to enable a complete leaktight enclosure of the mouth.
What was once a French colonial resort town in southern Cambodia is now a quiet coastal getaway surrounded by tropical islands. Known for its seafood market, where the fish practically jump from the water to your plate, it’s easy to see why Kep won’t be kept a secret for long. For the time being, you’ll find very few tourists among the locals sampling fresh crab, lobster, shrimp (and pretty much anything that swims) at its popular seafood market — you can go there around sunset and have yourself a five-star meal for less than a few dollars. Travelers visit Kep for its laid-back atmosphere rather than an extensive list of activities. In the past, Kep was primarily limited to expats living in Phnom Penh looking for a quiet weekend getaway, but with a variety of nearby tropical islands like Koh Tonsay — better known as Rabbit Island — it’s no wonder Kep is becoming more difficult for visitors to stay away from.
Situated in the world's largest free-standing dome, Tropical Islands features an indoor rain forest, spa facilities, and lagoon-style pool. Decorated with authentic palm trees and an artificial beach, it also boasts Germany's highest water slide. The outdoor AMAZONIA area also features Whitewater River, a unique lazy river pool. Free WiFi access is available in many spots in the resort.
Ocean Beach is the site of a historic single-screen movie house; The Strand Theatre, which opened in November 1925. In the late 1970s, the Strand survived with midnight showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Friday and Saturday nights. By the early 1980s it was running pornographic films. Community reaction forced it to change back to regular films.[23] It closed in the 1990s[24] and was converted into a clothing store after several failed attempts to preserve it as a theater.[citation needed] The theater was designated a historic building by the San Diego Historical Resources Board in December 2002.[25]
Swim Slowly! Exhaustion is a common problem for first time snorkelers. Swimming takes a good bit of energy. The trick with snorkeling is to stay relaxed and calm. You can wipe yourself out quickly if you are not careful. Only swim at a speed that allows you to breathe slowly and easily through your snorkel. Your snorkel does limit your breath, so keep your activity level at a pace that does not demand heavy breathing. Your fins will make it much easier. Learn to just float without effort. Only swim rapidly if necessary for safety.
Stretch nylon bikini briefs and bras complemented the adolescent boutique fashions of the 1960s, allowing those to be minimal.[104] DuPont introduced lycra (DuPont's name for spandex) in the same decade.[39] Spandex expanded the range of novelty fabrics available to designers which meant suits could be made to fit like a second skin without heavy linings.[105] "The advent of Lycra allowed more women to wear a bikini," wrote Kelly Killoren Bensimon, a former model and author of The Bikini Book, "It didn't sag, it didn't bag, and it concealed and revealed. It wasn't so much like lingerie anymore."[106] Increased reliance on stretch fabric led to simplified construction.[1] It allowed designers to create the string bikini, and allowed Rudi Gernreich to create the topless monokini.[107] Alternative swimwear fabrics such as velvet, leather, and crocheted squares surfaced in the early '70s.[1]
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
I’ve traveled quite a bit internationally as my husband is from Austria so I’ve visited some of the places you’ve mentioned. But I’m looking to leave MI for 3 months in winter and head down south, but have to stay in the US due to my husband staying back in MI for work, so he would fly down and visit me once a month. Plus my two kids will be in college, so I’d like them to have the chance to visit me as well.
Aruba is a small island — just 19.6 miles long — and boasts ideal temperatures year round, thanks to the constant trade winds (which helps with the humidity and limits the annoyance of mosquitoes). When travel to other islands in the Caribbean is dicey, Aruba is the optimal choice because it is located in the Netherland Antilles, outside of the hurricane belt.
Thailand has some of the most beautiful islands and beaches in the world. I could do an entire tropical island pictures photo story from its off shore getaways alone! Koh Lipe is one of those islands. Located right on the Malaysian Border, the trip out to Koh Lipe is worth it. Longtail boats line every beach in Southern Thailand making for the picture perfect setting for anyone travelling to the tropics.
Increasingly common glamour shots of popular actresses and models on either side of the Atlantic played a large part in bringing the bikini into the mainstream.[1] During the 1950s, Hollywood stars such as Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth, Lana Turner,[89][90] Elizabeth Taylor,[90] Tina Louise,[90] Marilyn Monroe,[90] Esther Williams, and Betty Grable[91] took advantage of the risqué publicity associated with the bikini by posing for photographs wearing them—pin-ups of Hayworth and Williams in costume were especially widely distributed in the United States.[38] In 1950, Elvira Pagã walked at the Rio Carnival, Brazil in a golden bikini, starting the bikini tradition of the carnival.[88]
Ocean Beach City Beach is the main beach in the San Diego neighborhood of Ocean Beach. This is a wide sandy beach that has formed at the south side of the San Diego River mouth. Looking north you can see the neighborhood of Mission Beach on the other side of the rock jetties that protect the Mission Bay Entrance Channel. The southern view from City Beach is dominated by the Ocean Beach Pier which extends about a half-mile out into the Pacific Ocean. If you are visiting here for the first time you should walk out to the end of the pier to take in the view of the city. Below the pier and south of it you’ll find extensive tide pools that are exposed at low tide.

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Ocean Beach has one of the longest running Men's 16" “Chicago Style” Softball Leagues in San Diego. Do you have a team of guys who would like to play? Multiple seasons throughout the year. All games are played on Tuesday nights at Bob Kenny Field (corner of Ebers and Newport) in Ocean Beach. If you are interested, please call the Recreation Center at (619) 531-1527 for more information.
Snorkels come in two orientations: Front-mounted (see Figure 4) and side-mounted (see Figure 5). The first snorkel to be patented in 1938 was front-mounted, worn with the tube over the front of the face and secured with a bracket to the diving mask. Front-mounted snorkels proved popular in European snorkeling until the late 1950s, when side-mounted snorkels came into the ascendancy. Front-mounted snorkels experienced a comeback a decade later as a piece of competitive swimming equipment to be used in pool workouts and in finswimming races, where they outperform side-mounted snorkels in streamlining. Front-mounted snorkels are attached to the head with a special head bracket fitted with straps to be adjusted and buckled around the temples (see Figure 4).

Almost all of the Earth's islands are natural and have been formed by tectonic forces or volcanic eruptions. However, artificial (man-made) islands also exist, such as the island in Osaka Bay off the Japanese island of Honshu, on which Kansai International Airport is located. Artificial islands can be built using natural materials (e.g., earth, rock, or sand) or artificial ones (e.g., concrete slabs or recycled waste).[14][15] Sometimes natural islands are artificially enlarged, such as Vasilyevsky Island in the Russian city of St. Petersburg, which had its western shore extended westward by some 0.5 km in the construction of the Passenger Port of St. Petersburg.[16]
Nearly twice the size of all the other Hawaiian islands combined, the snorkeling on Big Island is fantastic, especially at Honaunau Bay, also known as The City of Refuge, with an historic backdrop to boot. Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park has smooth lava rock flats to help you ease effortlessly from shore to sea into year-round crystal-clear water, and you'll find healthy coral gardens teeming with tropical fish, moray eels, and even turtles in shallow depths to the right. Spinner dolphins frequent deeper waters to the left.
Grenada is not your typical Caribbean Island. Dubbed Spice Island, visitors will find numerous nutmeg plantations in the island’s interior. A tour of Belmont Estate, Belvedere Plantation, the nutmeg processing and spice factory at Gouyave, and St. George’s Market Square should be on every visitor’s bucket list. Of course there are the requisite stunning beaches, 45 in all, with Grand Anse being the premier beach. Other Grenada highlights include River Antoine Rum Distillery, the spectacular harbor town of St. George’s, and day sails to the two smaller islands of Carriacou and Petit Martinique. Eco-travelers will appreciate La Sagesse Nature Center and Grand Etang National Forest Preserve.
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Snorkels constitute respiratory dead space. When the user takes in a fresh breath, some of the previously exhaled air which remains in the snorkel is inhaled again, reducing the amount of fresh air in the inhaled volume, and increasing the risk of a buildup of carbon dioxide in the blood, which can result in hypercapnia. The greater the volume of the tube, and the smaller the tidal volume of breathing, the more this problem is exacerbated. A smaller diameter tube reduces the dead volume, but also increases resistance to airflow and so increases the work of breathing. Occasional exhalation through the nose while snorkeling will slightly reduce the buildup of carbon dioxide, and may help in keeping the mask clear of water. It may also increase fogging.
Wowzers! Tahiti is beautiful! The sunset just completes the picture along with tahiti’s beautiful scenery! All of these destinations are extremely beautiful but my choice out of all of them would definitely be tahiti! I love tahiti because you get your own little hut to stay in! The huts are placed on top of the the bay of water and it would be so beautiful to wake up in the morning to an ocean right beside you! You’d look down and all you would see is ocean! Its so amazing how gorgeous things are! Tahiti will definitely be on my wish list of places to go in the future. Just need a little more money!

here’s a spot that might be interesting to some people. I’ve spent a month two years ago in Cozumel, Mexico (right across from Cancun) and found it to be really cool. I worked on cruise ships and it is one of the major cruise ship stops so there are tourists but mostly during the day while the ships are in port. Other than that it’s a cool and cheap place to stay. Using the app HomeAway (similar to AirBnB) I’ve found a place (it was a studio in a 7 apartment bulding, with a gate and a small pool in the back) that I paid $350 for a month for. The internet was very good and there were a few big supermarkets close by. Cozumel, for example is one of the top spots for scuba diving in the Caribbean and the side of the island that’s opposite to downtown where the cruise ships dock is full of beaches that rarely anyone goes to but it’s a great spot for windsurfing for example.
On entering the hall, visitors choose between different basic admission options with different prices. Tropical Islands is divided into two main areas, each with its own admission price. Visitors can move from one area to the other by paying an additional daily charge. Additional charges also apply for areas such as the water slide tower (not always), crazy golf course, African Jungle Lift, evening show and internal accommodation area. The entertainment programme comprises a gala evening show, smaller shows during the day and various events.
The reefs of Indonesia are everything any Blue Planet watcher might expect: nonstop riots of colorful coral obscured by curtains of fish. Top of the list for snorkelers would be Kungkungan Bay Resort, in the Lembeh Strait, just north of the island of Sulawesi. This hideaway resort is favored for a house reef accessible from shore, where water babies can spy scads of exotic life, from blue ribbon eels to cuttlefish. Plus, this resort practically invented the scuba phenomenon known as muck diving, aka checking out the wild, unusual critters that live amid the black sand muck. If you can get past the ugly factor of the bottom, as a snorkeler, you can also behold seahorses, leaf fish, pipefish, bobtail squid, flamboyant squid, blue-ringed octopi — the list goes on and on.
The beach has a lot of people around, but it doesn't feel too crowded once you're having fun. Parking can be a challenge, but once you find one you won the jackpot cause it's free. There's a large life guard tower close to the pier. We got to see them do a practice drill that day. You can hear airplanes flying over from time to time. You can see the sail boats in the distance which is nice. Lots of families there on my visit. There's a dog park along the beach more towards the hotel. People were nice and every one was friendly on our visit. No one bothered us and we were able to just relax. We got to also see people practicing their surfing skills. I plan to go back when I'm in that part of town again.
Beloved by divers from all over the world, Cebu is quickly becoming one of the most popular destinations for adventurous tourists. Long and narrow, Cebu Island is located in the Visayas archipelago, more or less in the center of the Philippines Islands. It has a narrow, sandy coastline, limestone plateaus and fertile coastal plains. Rugged mountain ranges soar 3,300 feet at the highest point and a number of hills cut across the island from north to south.

Nice reviews. I’ve spent a couple weeks in Bocas and it was a great place despite the crazy partying til 4am at Heiki. I’m more of the exploring, mild social drinking. Panama is amazing. Last summer, I spent 2 weeks on St John, USVI and had a great time. The main exploring takes place in the water. Most of the land isn’t that hike-able, which I like a mixture of both. Super expensive. Just a small carton of orange juice (8oz) was $3, a 1/4 pineapple was 4 dollars, etc. Most everything is imported and their electric runs off a diesel generator and averages $200-$400 a month for electric alone.

Ocean Beach has one of the longest running Men's 16" “Chicago Style” Softball Leagues in San Diego. Do you have a team of guys who would like to play? Multiple seasons throughout the year. All games are played on Tuesday nights at Bob Kenny Field (corner of Ebers and Newport) in Ocean Beach. If you are interested, please call the Recreation Center at (619) 531-1527 for more information.
Thanks for the great info. You listed the top three places I’m looking at to basically retire. I’m older, ya know, 50’s are the new 40’s kinda thing? Looking at Mexico – PV, though after reading your preferences you like Caribbean side Oaxaca Coast. Want to be around people more my age. Also, Panama Beaches and Thailand beaches. Loved the looks of Morocco and prices. May be too far? My concern is I will be on my own and worry about safety. Any tips, suggestions, input?
It is a single location dive.  A dive the late afternoon during the light and then we come up as planned just before the sunset.  We watch the sunset, a Keys favorite, and then prepare for the second dive.  Once dark, we dive the second dive to witness an amazing transformation of the reef.  New species coming out of the coral, new activity all around, and even surface bioluminescence that you will be delighted to see.  It’s a new world down there and you will be one of the few lucky ones to see it all happen in front of you.

An overused travel cliché says that the toughest places to reach are often the most rewarding. This cannot be truer in the case of Ofu Island in the remote US territory of American Samoa. One of mother nature’s finest pieces of work, touchdown on the beachside runway in Ofu signals the start of the weekly rush hour – as locals greet relatives returning from the main island with a big smile, government workers change shifts, and a few lucky tourists begin the vacation of a lifetime. On the menu? Jungle covered peaks hiding rare coconut crabs under the canopy, sleepy villages waking up only for Sunday church service, and a beach worthy of an Oscar – if only ‘The Academy’ would be aware of its existence.

13 restaurants and bars offer a wide variety of dining experiences. As well as a buffet breakfast in the Sawadee Restaurant, the Palm Beach Restaurant, Wok House and Mondial Food Court offer a selection of international specialties and freshly made cocktails. Tropical Garden features multiple-course meals, while Tropino Restaurant serves children's food.
With so many properties on Bora Bora offering accommodations in overwater bungalows, snorkeling here couldn't be any easier. However, the "Aquarium" off the southern tip of the main island shouldn't be missed, and if you chose to stay at the Sofitel Private Island Resort you'll have unlimited access via kayak or Tahitian canoe to its adjacent motu (small island) otherwise accessible only by private boat rental.
Have just discovered your blog today and love it! I am a student from NZ and want to travel to somewhere fantastic next year for a few weeks to get away from the hussle and bussle of study and work. Originally thought Thailand would be fantastic, and I see you agree with me here so great! But I also did not realise Bali was also so cheap. For a first trip overseas for a poor student (apart from Aus), where would you recommend? Bali or Thailand?

I’d say Puerto Vallarta is a better place to retire than Oaxaca because there is much larger retiree community there, easier airport access and better hospitals. I don’t really like the Caribbean coast that much because it’s too flat for my tastes. In terms of safety and retirement communities, probably check out Phuket in Thailand, San Miguel de Allende in Mexico or the mountain and beach towns around Panama City.
Dehydration is another concern. Hydrating well before entering the water is highly recommended, especially if one intends to snorkel for several hours. Proper hydration also prevents cramps. Snorkelers who hyperventilate to extend sub-surface time can experience hypocapnia if they hyperventilate prior to submerging. This can in turn lead to "shallow water blackout". Snorkeling with a buddy and remaining aware of the buddy's condition at all times can help avoid these difficulties.[citation needed]
Snorkeling can be a very rewarding activity. It benefits from its simplicity, where you can simply grab a mask and some fins, rather than hauling a bag full of heavy scuba gear. This also allows for more flexibility, allowing you to bring your gear on trips where bringing tons of scuba gear isn’t a possibility. And the lack of bubbles means you can often get closer to marine wildlife than with scuba gear on.
Although child-sized bikinis appeared in the 1950s, in many European countries, swimsuits below size 11 are commonly not sold with a separate top, but in the United States, Britain, and Canada, it has often been considered unacceptable for girls in late childhood (ages 7–11) to go topless.[citation needed] Several incidents of families being evicted from public pools due to their child being topless have been reported.[112] In 2002, clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch came under criticism for selling child-sized thong bikinis and underwear.[113]

An island or isle is any piece of sub-continental land that is surrounded by water.[2] Very small islands such as emergent land features on atolls can be called islets, skerries, cays or keys. An island in a river or a lake island may be called an eyot or ait, and a small island off the coast may be called a holm. A grouping of geographically or geologically related islands is called an archipelago, such as the Philippines.
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One of my first stops during my trip to San Diego, Ocean Beach has a phenomenal view of the Pacific located off of Nimitz Blvd. and Sunset Cliffs Blvd. The place was packed with surfers, sunbathers, happy retirees, yoga groups, and tourists from all over walking on the white sand. Parking can be a tremendous hassle and we were hard-pressed to find a parking spot until a lady saw us waiting and motioned over to us as she was putting away her surfing gear. We eagerly took the spot which was next to a grassy area filled with local college students performing gymnastics and acrobatic moves. It was really cool to watch them as it reminds me of some of the moves performed at a Cirque du Soleil show.
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Do you like history and water sports? Then Appledore Star will be the breath of fresh air you needed for your Key West vacation and snorkel adventure. You’ll feel like you’re stepping back in time after boarding this wooden 65' schooner. And on top of the awesome boat, the crew leads you out to the only living coral reefs in the continental United States. After snorkeling the waters that lie a few miles off the coast of Key West, and navigating your kayaks through the heart of Key West Wildlife, guests are provided with a lunch filled with fresh shrimp, fried chicken, fixings to make your own sandwiches, and a variety of fruits to refuel. On the breezy ride back to mainland, guests can enjoy complimentary beer, homemade sangria, and wine as a nice treat to end this 6 hour adventure.
Ocean Beach was given its name by developers Billy Carlson and Frank Higgins in 1887. The beachfront was the main attraction, although in the early 20th century, getting to Ocean Beach was a bit of a trek. Another draw was Wonderland, an amusement park at the northern end of the neighborhood that was washed away in 1916. Cottages, bungalows, and apartments were built through the years and attracted (and continue to attract) students, surfers, and free-spirited types. OB was somewhat isolated from the rest of the city until Interstate 8 was built in the mid-1960s.​ Ocean Beach is fondly looked upon as the neighborhood that time forgot, and it still has that hippie vibe—a carryover from the 1960s and '70s that never really left.
Or maybe you’re searching for the perfect one-piece? Hit the beach in style this summer with a super cute cut-out or strappy low-back one-piece. We absolutely love these looks paired with some comfy shorts for a stroll on the beach or a much-needed ice cream run. And you can always keep it breezy and throw on a beach cover-up and head for a seaside dinner. You really can’t go wrong. Summer has never looked so good on you.
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