Posts tagged with "adventure"

Rita Azar illustrates travel article for 360 MAGAZINE

9 Tips to Remember Your Journey Forever

Any trip is an excellent opportunity to learn many new things and break out of the routine. No matter if you have just recently returned from a vacation filled with new impressions or vice versa, are just getting ready to go and planning your route, you may be interested in this article. We have collected nine small tips to remain inspired by the journey and remember it forever.

Make Yourself a Talisman

Some trips become something much more than just a break from work and truly open up a new chapter in our lives. If you want to capture this momentous moment for yourself or your friend, a 3D crystal photo can be a great option and one of the best gifts for avid travelers. 

ArtPix 3D creates customized 3D crystals, such as keychains, necklaces, or figurines of different crystals types and shapes. Such a volumetric 3D Image created by using a laser-etching method looks beautiful and original. ArtPix 3D allows ordering unique personalized crystals online and shipping within the US in the shortest terms.

Write an Article or Post About Your Adventures

Even a short story about the trip will help you remember the vacation better, and it may become an inspiration and motivator for other travelers.

Also, your personal experience and fresh travel tips will help others to avoid mistakes and pitfalls. 

The sharing of practical knowledge is invaluable because it makes travel more comfortable, safer, and more beneficial.

Feel free to share your findings, overcome difficulties, and even curiosities during the trip via social media. This information can come in handy for other people!

Relax and Take Pictures

Going on vacation, forget about work issues, and monotonous routine. Just have fun, and don’t forget to take pictures! Human memory is unreliable, and even the most vivid memories fade over time. The photos will become a “time machine” for you, helping you to relive your trips in all details.

To not be distracted from your adventures by monitoring likes and views your posts get on Instagram, try not to upload photos right away, or even use a good old camera or instant camera instead of a smartphone. 

Take photos of not only what “is supposed to,” like places of tourist attraction, and not only what will collect more enthusiastic comments on social networks. 

Notice and capture all these little things, details, and stories that will be understandable only to those who were next to you during this journey. Such shots have a unique nostalgic atmosphere.

Taste Masterpieces of Local Cuisine

Each nation has its gastronomic preferences and delicacies. In France, there are excellent cheeses and wine, in England – ales and puddings, in Italy – prosciutto, pizza, and lasagne, in Spain – paella, gazpacho, and Jamon serrano. Any country has something to please and amaze guests from abroad.

To appreciate the local cuisine, you should better avoid restaurants in tourist areas and near interest places. The food there will be much more expensive and, very likely, of lower quality. Walk a few blocks, and you will find nicer and cheaper local restaurants.

Besides, locals do not eat in cafes and restaurants every day, so that you can follow their example. Go to the supermarket or grocery store, pick something you would like to try, and cook dinner yourself.

If there is no kitchen where you are staying, that’s no problem. Visit a local farmers market, grab some fruits and sandwiches, and have a picnic in the park. New impressions and small savings are guaranteed for you!

Visit Quirky Spots and Museums

Besides the well-known museums of art or places of historical interest, popular and crowded with tourists, each city has small, but no less attractive educational and entertainment spots.

It can be a house-museum of a famous musician, scientist or writer, or a little-known but unusual private exhibition. For example, in Paris, why not go to the Museum of Erotica or Magic, the ancient Père Lachaise Cemetery, or the catacombs? So you will look at the city from a different angle and learn something new.

Make New Acquaintances

Do not be afraid to strike up a conversation with new people – fellow travelers, neighbors at a table in a cafe, locals. A conversation with a stranger is an adventure, albeit a small one, thanks to which you can learn a lot about little-known but worthwhile places to visit, local culture, customs, and sense of humor, as well as various useful life hacks.

Feel free to be the first to start the conversation.

First, you will learn foreign words, and you can show off new knowledge in front of friends or on a date. Secondly, it is good memory training. And finally, in this way, you will find mutual understanding with the locals and show respect: not everyone knows English. 

Collect Some Souvenirs

Those who love to collect various memorabilia will appreciate this idea. Returning home from a foreign country or new city, you do not have to buy yourself keychains, magnets, and other typical souvenirs.

Take them for friends and loved ones, and leave yourself something more intimate and personal:

  • a tram ticket
  • a beautiful tree leaf
  • a coin
  • an old book from a flea market
  • a sugar stick from a cafe you had visited

These things will bring the ride back to mind with every touch.

Ride Public Transport

Become acquainted with the country or city from the inside through the window of a tram, bus, electric train, subway, and observe the locals.

You will see how people discuss the latest country news, reading the press, joking, or rushing to an important meeting. Such a casual experience will let you have a cheap sightseeing tour and see the city in all its details, not only well-known tourist spots.

Add Some Extreme

Long promenades through the streets, museums, and galleries are undoubtedly impressive. But why not add some adrenaline rush to the entertainment program?

Visiting attraction parks, horseback riding, visiting a crazy festival, riding on a cable car, or at least cycling or rollerblading will make your journey more eventful. Give yourself some vivid emotions!

Vaughn Lowery photographs his stay in Door County, Wisconsin for 360 MAGAZINE.

DOOR COUNTY – SUMMER 2020

By Elle Grant × Vaughn Lowery

People might hesitate to think of Wisconsin as a summer destination, but Door County proves otherwise is true. At the end of August, 360 Magazine was able to spend some time in this beautiful area, connecting with nature and the local cuisine. Door County features an array of activities based in its spectacular natural environment, for both those seeking a more tranquil getaway and for the thrill seekers. All this paired alongside local eats made for an outstanding end of summer getaway.

A favorite of summer tourists, Door County becomes a hub between Memorial and Labor Day each year with summer visitors arriving from the more metropolitan areas of Milwaukee, Chicago, Green Bay, and the Twin Cities. Generally, the population is just under 30,000 but swells over the summer with tourists. Ithas earned the nickname “the Cape Cod of the Midwest.” Local industry includes the aforementioned tourism, but their fishing industry as well as local agriculture also are economic staples for Door County. to five state parks and ten lighthouses, Door County is known for its natural scenery above all else, as well as their beaches. Its location makes it the perfect location for all kinds of getaways, from a family adventure, to a couple’s retreat, or even for a late summer wedding destination.

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, not all travel is virus friendly. Luckily, as Door County’s out of doors experiences are the area’s focal point, travel to this area is far more in line with social distancing andgovernment advisories compared to other options. Safety and health precautions were taken throughout this experience. The outdoor adventure focus made it the perfect getaway during these complex times.

Starting off our stay at Bayshore Inn lodging, we were immediately impressed with both the indoor and outdoor swimming pool, gym, game room and private beach. Their evening bonfires were especially fun – reminiscent of the best parts of summer camp! Our rooms were also incredibly spacious and featured a balcony along with a full kitchen. A fireplace, while not as helpful in August, would make a winter stay beyond cozy. Our first dinner, at the nearby Fred & Fuzzy’s Waterfront Grill in Sister Bay kicked off our stay perfectly. A purple and orange Wisconsin sunset colored the sky over old-fashioned cocktails.

During our stay, we quickly came to appreciate the raw beauty of Door County. Kayaking at the Door Country Adventure Center proved to be a remarkable experience. Taking a kayak along the Lake Michigan shoreline, we were able to witness the geologic wonders of Cave Point County Park – more natural sights to Wisconsin than we ever expected. Moving along the water felt like we were paddling through a still mirror – gorgeous. After a mile from our start point, the coves and caves of the area began to reveal themselves both above and below the waterline. This can only be experienced from the point of view of the water and navigating this area by kayak seems to be the best option by far to see these phenomenal geological sites.

An immediate standout was a bike ride along the Sunset Trail. This 10-mile bike path through all types of landscapes truly conveyed the varied scenery including Weborg Marsh, cedar and maple tree groves, and cliff communities. It begins near the Fish Creek entrance to Peninsula State Park and would be suitable for most novices but warned the hills can invite a bit of a challenge. Some of our party had to “walk” rather than “ride” up a few hills. Yet the views are worth it and not to be missed! Towards the end of the trail is one of Door County’s ten lighthouses which offers classic coastal charm. For those not faint of heart, there is cliff-jumping as well. Wisconsin’s one and only. Our experience was nothing short of heart-stopping. The thrill of leaping into stunning waters is well-worth facing any fears!

At Wisconsin’s only wildernessstate park, Newport State Park, we had the opportunity to go stargazing. Away from the bustle and pollution of the city, the night skies were flooded with stars. There is something particularly spiritual about the natural world by night.

The next morning, another unique experience along the Door County coast was that of morning paddleboard yoga. Bringing our yoga afloat on the waters of Lake Michigan proved a new experience but was very beginner-friendly and inclusive. The boards were weighted down with anchors to ensure that keeping balance was on us – not the waves! Both breath work and more advanced yoga postures are included with classes with Bay Shore Outfitters, and a paddle along the shore of Sister Bay afterwards was the perfect way to cap the morning.

Door County’s cuisine dazzled throughout our stay, but especially at Sonny’s Italian Kitchen and Pizzeria were our tastebuds set alight. A family-friendly restaurant overlooking Sturgeon Bay, their Chicago-style pizzas, tasty appetizers, and pasta dishes all impressed. Another culinary standout included a fish boil at the Old Post Office Restaurant. This dining experience is unique to the region, featuring Lake Michigan whitefish caught by local fishermen, paired with potatoes and a classic cherry pie. It proved to be a meal that was tasty, educational, and true to tradition, fun to share with others. Other treats like cinnamon rolls Grandma’s Swedish Bakery, Door County cherry margaritas, or tacos from Taco Cerveza made for a deliciously varied experience.

All in all, the experiences 360 magazine had in Door County, Wisconsin have transformed our understanding of the state forever. The natural beauty of the area isn’t to be underestimated – with the striking vistas along Lake Michigan, it was the perfect way to end summer 2020.

Below are links to where 360 Magazine stayed, ate, and adventured!

Bayshore Inn

Fred & Fuzzy’s Waterfront Grill in Sister Bay

Grandma’s Swedish Bakery at Rowley’s Bay Resort

DC Adventure Center

Wilson’s

Taco Cerveza

The Old Post Office Restaurant

Newport State Park

Julie’s Park Café

Bay Shore Outfitters Paddleboard Yoga

Thyme Cuisine

Sonny’s Italian Kitchen and Pizzeria

Online game illustration for 360 MAGAZINE

Nevada Adventures: Top 5 Unusual Things You Can Do in Vegas

Most of us associate Las Vegas with a city that never sleeps and a hometown of the biggest casinos and luxurious hotels. Vegas settles in the very heart of Nevada, a state that is considered a motherland of gambling and entertainment. When you arrive in the neon city, be prepared to meet multiple celebs walking down the streets amid casual tourists. Do you want to take a picture with His Highness Elvis Presley? Easy! Dozens of artists dressed up as the King of rock-n-roll will gladly make a selfie with you.

Vegas never sleeps, just like people who visit this marvelous city. Tourists have a myriad of cool things to do in this dazzling place. You can start your trip from attending the legendary Mob Museum to learn more about gangsters and see another dark side of Vegas. Your next destination can be the iconic museum of Madame Tussauds (not to be confused with the museum in London), where you can take a photo with eminent celebs, like Britney Spears or Mike Tyson. You can dive into the atmosphere of luxury and burlesque in the notorious Burlesque Hall of Fame. Are you a huge Marvel fan? Then welcome to the Marvel Avengers Station featuring your beloved superheroes in a full size.

Top 5 unusual things to do in the neon city

Looking for more thrilling Nevada adventures?! For more demanded tourists, who want to get a truly mind-blowing and one-of-a-kind experience in the neon city, we prepared a list of the top 5 unusual things to do in Vegas.

Feel the spirit of the Wild West ghost town

The unique atmosphere of Wild West will never stop intriguing people. No wonder, as the world of brave cowboys, bandits, and saloons seems so mesmerizing and even a bit frightening (thus even more tempting). In Vegas, tourists have a unique chance to feel that Wild West thrilling spirit by booking a tour to the Wild West ghost town. The tour duration is 10 hours (10 AWESOME hours to be exact), during which visitors can learn the history of ancient cowboys, have a drink in the authentic saloon, and try their luck in gold mining. And don’t forget to purchase a cowboy hat as a souvenir from this remarkable spot.

Don’t miss the Titanic exhibition!

The sad history of the most famed liner Titanic is known to everyone. The film adaptation, directed by the eminent James Cameron, gave a second breath to the Titanic’s story and brought 11 Oscars to its creators. People still commemorate all those passengers who tragically passed away in the liner’s crash. In Vegas, you can feel the Titanic spirit as an actual traveler by attending the unique exhibition. You can step on the deck and visit recreated rooms of the legendary ship to get that realistic experience like the Titanic’s passengers decades ago. The organizers assure that those who visited their exhibition at least once would always keep Titanic’s story in their hearts.

Check the National Atomic Testing Museum

Whether you love physics or not, the National Atomic Testing Museum is a must-to-visit spot in Vegas. The museum stores unique pieces of weapons, video recordings, and letters from the times of WWII. Visitors can get a one-of-kind experience of the atomic testing and read the diaries of the prominent scientist Albert Einstein. You can discover the mysteries of atomic evolution and find out how contemporary geniuses continue their ancestors’ path by developing new top-notch technologies. You can put yourself in Sheldon Cooper’s shoes in the museum and find out what it feels like to be a talented physicist.

Visit the Red Rock Canyon

Nothing can beat the beauty of witnessing a picturesque sunset at the Red Rock Canyon. Millions of tourists annually attend this marvelous national conservation spot in Nevada. The views of the magnificent mountains and plains, incredible wildlife, and unforgettable hiking experience make the Canyon the most beloved sightseeing among tourists and locals. Visitors can book a camping tour and spend a night under the open-air, sitting near the fire and listening to the guitar. They can admire the beauty of the surrounding nature and landscape at an aerial view by booking a flight across the Canyon. This mysterious place won’t leave anyone cold.

Get unforgettable emotions in the Caesars Palace

Nevada is a gambling state, and Vegas is the heart of the most luxurious casinos and entertainment spots. When you are in Vegas, the No.1 spot to see on your map should be Caesars Palace. This magnificent place will change your vision of entertaining routine as nobody gets bored there. No wonder that this resort is titled the Palace because once you enter its doors, you dive into the parallel universe with the gorgeous halls, Michelin-starred restaurants, and lavish casinos. The majestic gambling area in the Caesars Palace will make you feel like George Clooney’s hero at Ocean’s Eleven. Visitors can have a tour in the Caesars Palace even if they don’t stay in the hotel. It is a dream place for gamblers and high rollers or casual spectators who want to feel that unique thrill.

Things to know when scheduling a voyage to Vegas

When you are in Vegas, you won’t let yourself get bored. However, there are some rules you must know when planning to visit the city of dazzle:

In Vegas, it is forbidden to drink alcohol if you are under 21.

You can’t stop a taxi on the street in Vegas. Taxis can take passengers only in the designated spots. Usually, they locate near hotels, restaurants, and casinos.

You can get married within an hour in any chapel if you provide your ID. Vegas marriages are the fastest and easy-going, though we can’t say the same thing about the divorces. When considering tying the knot in Vegas, better think twice not to pass through a tiresome divorce process afterward.

Take gambling mindfully! Though casinos and wagering activities are allowed in Nevada, there are many pitfalls that gamblers must learn before visiting a gambling spot. According to the WorldBookmakers’ experts, bettors can start wager on real money only if they set up a strategy in advance. A good strategy is a key to hit the bank on wagering and gambling.

Summing up

People who have been in Vegas at least once admit that this majestic city stole their hearts forever. If you plan a trip to the neon city, pick up the sightseeing you want to visit beforehand. You can schedule a shopping marathon, attend the largest museums in the area, go camping to the legendary Canyon, and try your fortune at the luxurious casinos. So many awesome spots and gorgeous places to visit along the way! Vegas is full of opportunities that you can discover firsthand. 
 

Kaelen Felix illustrates Amtrak for 360 MAGAZINE.

360 Magazine Marches on Washington

By Cassandra Yany × Armon Hayes, Vaughn Lowery

Recently, our team journeyed to Washington, D.C. for the National Action Network’s Commitment March. The August 28 march marked 57 years since the March on Washington where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his historic “I Have A Dream” speech. According to the National Action Network’s website, the goal of the march was to advocate for comprehensive police accountability reform, promote participation in the Census and motivate voters to cast their ballots in the upcoming Presidential election.

The National Action Network was founded by Rev. Al Sharpton in 1991. With nearly 100 chapters nationwide, the civil rights organization works in the tradition of Martin Luther King, Jr. to achieve “one standard of justice, decency, and equal opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, criminal record, economic status, gender, gender expression or sexuality.”

The trip from New York to Washington, D.C. was made easy by taking Amtrak’s Acela service. Despite the higher price point, the Acela is newer and less crowded than regional trains. The express train eliminated the burden of tolls and stopped in only a few cities, arriving in D.C. after about three and a half hours. It can be stressful to travel right now, so it was a relief to see how clean the train was. The quiet car, basic free wifi and outlets on board provided the perfect environment to research and write articles on our tablets. We utilized our extra time to discuss with one another and prepare for our coverage of the march and our days in D.C.

The café offered coffee and various snack options, and the sliding glass doors made it easy for us to walk through the cars. The reclining seats were comfortable and allowed us to rest before our trip. There were also sections of four seats for those traveling in a larger group. Each passenger could bring two personal items weighing up to 25 pounds, and two carry-on bags weighing up to 50 pounds at no additional cost. Amtrak is currently offering reduced fares for two to six tickets purchased together where riders can save eight to 45 percent.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Amtrak story for 360 MAGAZINE

Luckily, we were able to call Amtrak in advance to ensure we could carry on our folding bicycles. With limited parking available in the city, electric bikes served as a great mode of transportation for many protesters. E-bikes such as the DYU Smart Bike and a custom scooter from Good Vibe Gliders were an affordable alternative to renting a car, and made covering and participating in the march much easier.

The Commitment March: Get Your Knee Off Our Necks started early Friday morning. Participants marched through the National Mall, many carrying signs remembering those whose lives have been lost in acts of police violence. Others displayed “Black Lives Matter” on flags, shirts and masks.

Some participants created street art during the event, voicing their support through their work. At one point, a number of demonstrators stood together in the Reflecting Pool in front of the Washington Monument. Marchers reached the section of 16 Street NW that has become known as “Black Lives Matter Plaza” around 3:30 PM before dispersing for the day.

Organizers of the march upheld COVID-19 guidelines and regulations. The National Action Network placed multiple signs throughout the National Mall encouraging social distancing, and took marchers’ temperatures as they entered the area. Face masks were distributed to people who did not have one, and visitors from high-risk areas were urged to join virtually from their homes. There was also a testing booth on site, as reported by WUSA 9.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Amtrak story for 360 MAGAZINE

The march was co-convened by Sharpton and Martin Luther King III. Among the thousands of attendees who gathered on the National Mall were the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner and Jacob Blake. Many members of these families gave speeches at the Lincoln Memorial, along with lawmakers from across the country. These congressmen and women pushed for legislation that would address cases of racial injustice.

Though she was not present, Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris shared her message to marchers via Twitter. In her speech, which was played at the event, she said, “…if we work together, to challenge every instinct our nation has to return to the status quo, and combine the wisdom of long time warriors for justice, with the creative energy of the young leaders today, we have an opportunity to make history, right here and right now.”

Yolanda Renee King took the stage to address the crowd, standing where her grandfather had led March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. In a video posted by CNN she said, “We stand and march for love and we will fulfill my grandfather’s dream.” She then led a chant of “Show me what democracy looks like; This is what democracy looks like!”

Friday was also the 65th anniversary of Emmett Till’s murder. The 14-year-old was lynched and thrown off a bridge while visiting family in Mississippi. He was abducted after “allegedly whistling at a white woman,” according to ABC 7 Chicago, and his body was found mutilated in the Tallahatchie River. Till’s family never received justice, as the two men responsible for his death were both acquitted. Till’s murder helped to spark the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s. Civil rights leader and former congressman John Lewis wrote that “Emmett Till was [his] George Floyd” in a New York Times essay that was published on the day of Lewis’ funeral.

The trip provided a meaningful experience to stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as time to see local relatives. 360 President Vaughn Lowery visited his uncle Leroy Lowery, the former executive director of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation, who raised over $120 million for the Stone of Hope.

Leroy Lowery is the son of the late Rev. Joseph E. Lowery, a civil rights leader who helped Martin Luther King, Jr. establish the Southern Christina Leadership Conference, and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009. Leroy Lowery attended the march with his father in 1963 and stated on Friday, “to see that we have to march [again] 57 years later is deflating.”

Kaelen Felix illustrates Amtrak story for 360 MAGAZINE
Rita Azar illustrates elephants for 360 MAGAZINE

Celebrate World Elephant Day

August 12th was World Elephant Day, and there are many ways you can get involved to help bring funds and awareness to protect these gentle giants.

International Conservation Charity, Space For Giants, and Enasoit Game Sanctuary are committed to securing the ecological and economic value that nature conservation offers- especially in this time of crisis, when travel and tourism are impacted, wildlife and natural habitat are more vulnerable to exploitation than ever before.

Here’s why elephants need our help:

  • Poachers have killed roughly one-quarter of Africa’s elephants in just 10 years- that’s a loss of over 110,000 elephants.
  • Only 415,000 elephants remain in Africa, down from 600,000 in 1989, and 1.3m in 1979.
  • Elephant range in Africa has dropped 42% since 1995, from 2.1m sq miles to 1.2m sq miles.
  • Elephant range ‘heavily affected’ by human activity now is 29%. By 2050, it will be 63%.

Space for Giants was integral in combating the illegal ivory trade in central Kenya which ultimately led to the elimination of elephant poaching in 2018. Today, Space for Giants operates in over 10 countries on 3 continents and works with National Geographic, African Wildlife Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, and more to protect Africa’s elephants, and their landscapes.

How you can get involved:

Space For Giants has unveiled Walk For Giants, a fundraising and awareness campaign releasing alongside two exclusive capsule collections with proceeds from all sales going back to Space For Giant’s integral work in conservation and the crucial protection of this endangered species. Additional information on the campaign and capsule collections are below- a great way to treat yourself and lend your support to an important cause is the perfect way to contribute to World Elephant Day, everyday.

A Stay at Enasoit is not just a luxury, eco-centric getaway – the dues for your stay go directly to helping preserve, conserve, and protect the landscapes and wildlife you’re surrounded by.

These are a few ways that you can help Elephants year-round, not just on World Elephant Day- these creatures need your help in protecting their precious environment- and it’s as easy as buying yourself a new piece of clothing or booking a trip to see these creatures up close for yourself.

If you’re looking for additional ways to get involved, Space for Giants also has a large support network with a wide range of individuals including academics, journalists, celebrities (such as Megan Markle, Prince William, Elizabeth Hurley, Courteney Cox, Nicky Hilton to name a few), philanthropists, and sports people, to bring new advocates to its cause and educate communities around the world on the importance of these conservation efforts and corresponding fundraising efforts.

About The Walk For Giants campaign:

The Walk For Giants campaign will kick-off with the release of two exclusive capsule collections; a 44-piece collection from Gemfields, a world-leading supplier of responsibly sourced colored gemstones, and a series of 15 sustainable collections from NET-A-PORTER, the world’s leading online luxury fashion retailer. All proceeds from these capsule collections will bring critical support to protect Africa’s elephants and their natural habitat.

A series of stunning images featuring both capsule collections highlight Africa’s gentle giants and breathtaking landscapes that Space For Giants works to protect.

  • Shot by Francesco Carrozzini
  • Creative Direction by Riccardo Ruini
  • Models: Selena Forrest and Arizona Muse
  • Location: Enasoit Game Sanctuary in Laikipia, Kenya.
Cruise illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

Aqua Expeditions

Aqua Expeditions, the global leader in luxury small ship expeditions, will begin welcoming back travelers aboard its ocean explorer yacht Aqua Blu. Local Indonesian residents will be able to set sail beginning August 2020, while international travelers can expect to depart from September 12, 2020 with enhanced health and safety protocols. These strict measures will be implemented across the company’s vessels in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

At the onset of the recent global pandemic, Aqua Expeditions took early, swift and decisive action to maintain strict antiviral hygiene standards on all three vessels in operation. As a result, the company experienced no cases of COVID-19 onboard any of its vessels.

“Today, more than ever, our employees, customers and partners need reassurance of our ability to offer them the safest experience possible,” says Francesco Galli Zugaro, CEO and founder of Aqua Expeditions. “It is our duty to anticipate needs and respond to health and safety requirements by adhering to the highest standards.”

Aqua Expeditions river vessels and ocean explorer yacht accommodate a maximum of 30 to 40 guests, allowing for the tailor-made experience it is known for. Its small ship capacity provides ample personal space and constant safe physical distancing among passengers and crew.

All vessels comply with the health and safety standards of the International Safety Management (ISM), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Out of an abundance of caution and as part of its uncompromising commitment to the health, safety and wellbeing of the crew, staff and guests, Aqua Expeditions has adopted additional measures to address guests’ concerns about travel, including:

  • Conducting health screenings and pre-boarding medical evaluations for all crew and staff.
  • Introducing a pre-embarkation Health and Safety assessment to be completed by all guests before embarkation.
  • Eliminating crew changes during the entire duration of each itinerary, reducing the risk of potential outside exposure.
  • Conducting daily crew health checks to ensure all health concerns are actively addressed and monitored.
  • Intensifying disinfection standards by developing a combination of manual and contactless disinfection procedures.
  • Cleaning and sanitizing cabins three times a day, ensuring the highest level of hygiene standards.
  • Providing face masks, latex gloves and hand sanitizer to all crew and guests as required in accordance with each destination’s regulations and guest preference.
  • Introducing a Health and Safety Officer aboard each ship whose responsibility is the wellbeing of each crew and guest, as well as the proper compliance and implementation of safety standards.

The dining rooms aboard each vessel already take into account physical distancing but have been reconfigured to further create a dining environment where guests can enjoy their experience without worrying about health risks. This includes greater flexibility and options for table seating and spacing, as well as two sittings for each meal in the dining room.

Aqua Expeditions has implemented a global food safety policy via an internal auditing system, following HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) principles for cold chain supply protocols, supervised by a qualified food safety officer. Production kitchens around the world are staffed by highly trained personnel who utilize international best practices in sanitation and quality control, as well as usage of products to secure food safety such as antimicrobial fruit and vegetable treatments.

Aqua Expeditions’ small group shore excursions are an integral part of the brand’s ethos. With no more than 10 guests per group, the excursions offer personalized, engaging experiences. The Aqua Expeditions team cleans and disinfects all excursion equipment, prior to and after use. On the Aqua Blu, which sails around East Indonesia, scuba and snorkel gear is distributed to guests to keep for their exclusive use throughout their voyage.

Lastly, each Aqua Expeditions ship is flagged in the country in which it operates, reassuring guests that they are always allowed to disembark in any port or anchorage location on an itinerary.

A recognized global leader in luxury small-ship expeditions, Aqua Expeditions explores the worldߣs most wildlife- and culture-rich destinations aboard best-in-class vessels of stylish contemporary design. Venturing into unspoiled sanctuaries to witness the beauty of nature and wildlife, Aqua Expeditions sails to remote destinations with minimized human interaction, secluded from crowds. Expect tailored five-star itineraries, a highly exclusive 1:1 crew-to-guest ratio with personalized service, a cuisine experience crafted by acclaimed chefs, and flexible, expert-guided adventure activities and excursions for all ages, with a maximum of 30-40 guests per ship. Aqua Expeditions currently operate river explorations on the Amazon (Peru), the Mekong (Cambodia and Vietnam), and coastal yacht voyages to Komodo National Park, Ambon and the Spice Islands, as well as Raja Ampat (East Indonesia). Its fourth vessel, the Aqua Nera, makes its maiden voyage this fall in the Peruvian Amazon.

Follow Aqua Expeditions: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

Top 5 European Countries That Offer Freelance Visas

An increasing number of Americans are seeking options for better living—long-term—beyond the U.S. borders, however to earn a living while away requires something beyond a tourist visa. A new report from International Living explores the top five European countries that offer the best freelance visas.

“If you’ve paid attention to headlines in recent weeks, you’ll have likely seen all the many stories about Americans wanting to escape the US Covid crisis,” says Jeff D. Opdyke, editor of The Savvy Retiree, a publication of International Living. “Stories on how to seek second passports. Stories on countries where Americans are increasingly seeking information on emigration. Stories on certain countries and Caribbean islands aiming to attract Americans for a year abroad.

“What’s often missing amid all these many words is the story of how to live abroad for longer than a year without having to spending $100,000 or more buying a passport. For the fact is, a number of countries, particularly in Europe, offer ‘freelance’ visas specifically aimed at those who want to live and work in a particular country for the long haul.

“This report addresses that. Because, frankly, that’s often the quickest and easiest way for the average American to gain permission to live and work legally in Europe.

“Only a limited handful of European countries offer freelance visas. In most countries, you’ll need a job offer from a local firm, or you’ll need to work for a multinational will local operations that transfers you into a particular country. For most of us, that’s not an option. Instead, we have to look to countries that specifically welcome the independent, freelance worker.”

The report explores the five best countries to consider in Europe:

Czech Republic

“I chose to pursue a freelance life two years ago in Prague, one of Europe’s most comfortable and picturesque cities, after careful consideration of other European destinations,” says Opdyke. “Primary among those reasons is the fact that the Czech Republic offers what’s known locally as a Zivno, widely regarded as one of the best freelance-worker options in Europe.

This isn’t a visa, and it not specifically targeted at foreigners. Instead, the Zivno is effectively a national registry of independent workers, whether they’re native-born Czechs or foreigners with long-term residence status. As such, applicants will need a long-residence visa to pair with the Zivno.

“But assuming you have marketable skills in something that allows you to earn income online or even locally – as, say, a language teacher,” says Opdyke, “you will likely obtain your Zivno and with that it is easier to qualify for a one-year, long-term residence visa, a stamp in your passport. Then, assuming you play by Czech rules (pay your taxes and the mandatory health and social security insurance – combined, about $200 a month, minimum), you’ll apply for and receive a biometric, long-term residence card good for two years and renewable for another two. After five years, you can apply for permanent residence/citizenship, if that appeals to you. (Note: Because the Czech Republic is part of the European Union, its passport is one of the five best in the world.)”

Prague, the capital, is a wonderful city to call home—folks are close to so much in terms of weekend getaways or longer trips. The lifestyle is relaxing. The city is eye-candy pretty much everywhere you go. And the food is great. A couple can live the good life there on a budget of $1,900 a month.

Germany

“Here, you want the Freiberufler, Germany’s self-employment visa,” reports Opdyke. “It’s not terribly difficult to obtain, so long as you jump through various paperwork hoops that exist – and Germany has lots of paperwork hoops, including revenue plans, letters of intent or contracts from potential or existing clients, and various other documents.”

Folks will also need to prove income sufficiency, which generally means at least €5,000 (just over $5,900) in a (preferably) German bank account.

Freiberufler is good for six months to three years, depending on the application, and it’s renewable. The primary challenge is that an applicant will (probably) need to prove he or she has German freelance clients. Once armed with the Freiberufler, should a freelancer ultimately want permanent residence in Germany, it’s possible to apply after eight years.

Germany offers an excellent standard of living, with good infrastructure and quality healthcare. However, Germany’s cost of living tends to be higher than the European Union average. A monthly budget for a couple living in a suburban area, close to Munich, runs $3,610 to $4,160.

Spain

The autónomo is what freelancers pursue in the land of sangria.

“The process, while not especially difficult, can be lengthy – taking upwards of six months to complete, which means a 90-day tourist visa for the Schengen Zone (of which Spain is a member) will often expire before you receive your autónomo,” advises Opdyke. “So, you need to plan for that by completing as much of the process as you can outside of Spain. Conversely, as your 90-day limit approaches you can hop across to a non-Schengen country such as Ireland or the UK for a few weeks or months to stop your Schengen clock from winding down.”

The autónomo is identical to the Czech Zivno in that it’s good for one year. An applicant can apply for two, two-year extensions, and after five years of surviving on tapas, then, apply for permanent residency/citizenship if he or she wishes to remain in Spain as a naturalized citizen eligible for an EU passport.

Granada, overlooked by the snow-capped peaks of the majestic Sierra Nevada, is a timeless city of many layers, many people, and many stories. The city is quickly gaining ground as a top choice in Spain—the climate and weather of Granada justify why so many peoples have sought to be here. And the nearly 500-year-old University of Granada plays a major role in the city’s youthful vibe. Here a couple can live well on a monthly budget of $2,476.

Portugal

This is, perhaps, the easiest freelance/self-employed visa to pursue in the EU, which makes it quite popular for those seeking a visa that allows for both long-term residence and permission to earn a living in Europe.

There are two options:

1) residence visa for independent work (working locally for Portuguese clients as a contract employee);

2) residence visa for entrepreneur work (essentially the digital nomad stuff collecting clients from around the world).

“Under Portugal’s ‘non-habitual residency’ program,” says Opdyke, “income generated outside of Portugal for certain types of ‘high-value’ activities is eligible for a tax exemption, meaning you pay no local taxes (you will still owe self-employment taxes to the States, and, potentially, personal income taxes, depending on how much money you earn living abroad).

Permanent residency/citizenship rules in Portugal follow the Spanish and Czech model in that you can apply after five years.

Porto, the second-largest metropolitan area in Portugal after Lisbon, is an increasingly popular city amongst digital nomads. Porto is a living, breathing picture-postcard of European charm, with plenty to see and do. There’s a proverbial banquet of exciting activities, from historic city walks to wine tastings across the river in Vila Nova de Gaia’s wine caves. But best of all, it’s good value. A couple can live well here on a monthly budget of $1,550.

France

“France’s entrepreneur/profession libérale visa is similar to Portugal in terms of ease of attainment,” says Opdyke. “It’s an ideal way for Francophiles to gain legal permission to live and work in France.

“You need to demonstrate that you can fend for yourself financially by proving you earn at least the French legal minimum wage (about €1,540 per month, or $1,800). Beyond that, there are typical documents and whatnot that are necessary for the application, but nothing particularly difficult.”

And despite widespread misconceptions about cost of living in France, outside of Paris the country is a pretty affordable place to call home.

Given its ideal placement along the French Riviera, the coastal city of Toulon in southeastern France provides an idyllic lifestyle for residents and short-term visitors. Away from the hustle-and-bustle of big “resort” towns like Nice, Cannes, and St. Tropez, unassuming Toulon lies a bit off the radar. A couple can live well here on a monthly budget of $1,986 to $2,228.

The full report, including information on a bonus country, The Netherlands, can be found, here: 5 Best Freelance Visas in Europe

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Travel illustration by Rita Azar for 360 MAGAZINE.

Visit Rovaniemi × Sustainable Travel Finland

The future of travel is in sustainability, and responsibility is the new luxury. Visit Rovaniemi is among the first to join Sustainable Travel Finland program, which was made possible on June 1, 2020 for companies and destinations to undergo in order to achieve a Sustainable Travel Finland label. The first companies have already been awarded with the label- the first labelled company in Rovaniemi being The Arctic TreeHouse Hotel, one of the six Sustainable Travel Finland labels awarded to Lappish companies by Visit Finland.

Because of the crisis, the development of sustainable travel industry in Lapland, Finland has experienced a boost. Sanna Kärkkäinen, the managing director of Visit Rovaniemi states that this is the perfect time for everyone to take these steps towards sustainable tourism; “Sustainability and responsibility are the core values of tomorrows destinations, through our communication we, at Visit Rovaniemi, ensure that local companies making responsible and sustainable actions, will prosper in the future.”

Businesses can join the program free of charge

Visit Rovaniemi, with its partners, has taken the responsibility and sustainability seriously and now runs a Sustainable Travel Finland programme, helping the local tourism to develop more responsibly. Kärkkäinen encourages all local businesses to join this program free of charge. It provides companies and destinations with a sustainable development process including ecological, social, economic and cultural dimensions, a concrete toolkit to gain the Sustainable Travel Finland label, and access to a continuous development model.

By taking the local voices into account in the planning and offering locally produced services and products, Rovaniemi stands a chance of serving a variety of more sustainable experiences to travellers of the future.

Read the whole story about Sustainable Travel Finland here.

Keep up to date with Visit Rovaniemi here. 

Vaughn Lowery and 360 MAGAZINE test the Zeno Gym.

5 Tips for Staying Active at Home

Are you like the majority of people who are spending way more time at home than you usually would? With lockdown measures happening across the country in 2020, and then the slow return to the new normal, people just haven’t been out and active like they normally would. While it’s been an adjustment, there are ways you can stay healthy and active despite being home so much. In fact these may be habits you decide to keep up with even after the pandemic is under control. To get you started on your path to a more active lifestyle at home, here are five tips you can start using right away.

Make Use of Online Exercise Videos

One of the hottest trends to hit during lockdown was an interest in online exercise videos. YouTube is one of the best places to find this content, with thousands upon thousands of free videos to check out. In particular, you can use these videos for cardio workouts, Yoga, and Pilates. You can go about things at your own pace, choose the length of the workout video, and do them as often as you like during the week. Many of these don’t require any sort of special equipment or workout gear, just enough space in a room to move about and perform the various exercises.

Get Yourself a Golf Simulator

If you’re an avid golfer, why not take this time at home to brush up on your skills and therefore improve your game. You can buy your very own golf simulator like one of these that you can set up in your house. With these simulators, the weather outside never matters; you can enjoy a “game of golf” whenever the mood strikes. What’s really great about these simulators is the amount of information and feedback they provide, which you can use to better your game. You’ll get information on your swing, speed, stance, accuracy, and so much more.

Backyard Sports Games

If you happen to have yard space, you have access to a whole host of additional activities. Anything sports related that can be played in your own yard is a fabulous option. This could include activities like badminton, soccer, baseball, bocce ball, lawn darts, croquet, and so forth. If you have kids, these are also the kinds of activities they can get involved in. 

Invest in an Exercise Machine

If you plan to keep up with your at-home physical activity in the long-run, it can make sense to make an investment and purchase an exercise machine. Some of the more popular options include a weight machine, a treadmill, an elliptical, a stationary bike, and a rowing machine. The catch with these machines is that you need enough space to use them and store them, so they aren’t usually ideal for smaller sized homes and spaces.

Those House Chores are Exercise Too

Then there are the house chores that need to be done regularly. This includes both the indoor and outdoor chores. These act as their own form of physical activity as you can really work up a sweat and burn some calories doing them. Chores that are known for burning the most amount of calories are vacuuming, mopping, laundry, gardening/weeding, and mowing the grass. In order to get the best results from household chores make sure you do at least one strenuous chore daily.

No Need to Leave the House to Get Active

As you can very well see there is absolutely no reason to leave the house in order to be active and stay healthy. Each of these tips will help you to achieve your health goals.

Sunset illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

7 Most Amazing Travel Destinations in Europe

With most of Europe now opening back up to tourists and travelers after the impact of COVID-19, many of us are starting to think about planning an upcoming European adventure. If you are thinking of going on vacation and want to visit Europe this year after months of uncertainty in quarantine and lockdown, the good news is that most countries on this continent have managed to get control of the coronavirus and are safe to visit once again. Here are some of the top destinations in Europe that can’t be missed. 

Portugal:

Portugal is a vibrant, diverse country with so much to see and do that it can feel like you have visited several different countries during your time there. With so much to see and do you will struggle to decide whether you want to enjoy a fun and adventurous city break in magical Porto or explore the sandy beaches and traditional resorts of Albufeira in the Algarve. Or, with trains in Portugal that run regularly, connect the country and can easily be booked online, why not travel to various different Portuguese destinations – don’t restrict yourself to just one place. 

Scotland:

With vibrant cities like Glasgow and Edinburgh and rolling countryside including picturesque views in untouched rural areas like on the Isle of Skye, Scotland is the perfect choice for anybody who is looking to visit Europe. While much of Scotland is still in lockdown due to COVID-19 compared to the rest of the UK and Europe, this might be a destination that you want to plan your travel to further in the future – but it will be worth the wait. Get starting putting your trip together with this Scotland trip planner

Spain:

There’s a reason that Spain is the most popular destination in Europe for tourists. This gorgeous county has just the right combination of cities, villages, and beaches and there really is something for everybody. You can explore the architecture and art in Barcelona, delve into history in Madrid or Seville, or party on the beach in Ibiza or Tenerife – the choice is yours! While Spain was particularly hard-hit by the coronavirus, it is now recovering and ready to welcome visitors once again. 

Italy:

Italy is thought by many to be one of the most beautiful countries in Europe and indeed in the world. This gorgeous country has a lot to offer, from amazing city breaks in Rome, Florence, Milan or Venice to adventures in the countryside with stunning vineyards and gorgeous beaches to explore. No matter where you go, you will certainly be met with some of the best hospitality that you have ever experienced, not to mention the amazing food and wine in this country that is second-to-none. 

France:

Home to Paris, the City of Love, if you are looking for a romantic and intimate getaway with somebody special after the pandemic, there’s no better choice than France. And, since this country is closely bordered with several others in Europe, you can easily get there from destinations in Spain, Portugal, Germany, The Netherlands, and even the UK, with the Eurail train that travels along a tunnel under the English Channel. Whether you’re looking for a vibrant city break exploring the big attractions like the Lourve and Eiffel Tower in Paris or want a more relaxed vacation with summer vibes in Marseilles, there’s something here for every type of traveler. 

Malta:

This European island might be small but it certainly has a lot to offer. Visit Malta for the sand, sea, and some of the most delicious food that you will ever taste. And, there is plenty of gorgeous scenery to enjoy; head to Comino for some of the clearest, bluest sea water you will have ever seen or head into the mountains to explore and enjoy a horseback riding adventure. When it comes to things to do, there’s certainly no shortage of activities that you can enjoy amidst the stunning backdrop from quad biking to gun range shooting, or simply sipping a cocktail on the beach. 

Greek Islands:

Last but not least, the Greek islands offer some of the most unparalleled beauty in Europe with white, sandy beaches, clear blue seas, and traditional white-domed churches. Santorini is well-known for being one of the most gorgeous of the Greek islands to visit and is very popular with weddings, but the other options including Corfu, Crete, Paphos, and Thessaloniki are all stunning choices for anybody who is looking for a relaxing vacation surrounded with beautiful nature.