Island Trader Vacations Reviews 3 Lovely French Islands

frenchislandsm 300x198 Island Trader Vacations Reviews 3 Lovely French IslandsFurther continuing our Divine Islands Series, we turn our attention to another historic and beautiful destination not often considered for its islands, the country of France. Journey with us to 3 of France’s amazing island destinations and explore what you have been missing.  As we begin our journey to the lovely French Islands, we welcome you to the islands of Île de Ré, Île d’Yeu and Belle Isle.

Île de Ré or Isle of Rhé is small islands located just of the western coast of France near La Rochelle. Connected to the mainland by a bridge since 1988, this small coastal island is home to around 15,000 residents. Nicknamed a jewel of the Atlantic Coast, this small island and its diversity draw thousands of visitors to its shores each year to enjoy the countryside, beaches, forests, marshes and the slower pace of life. Like most areas of France, food and shopping are part of the charm of the island and plenty of both can be found in the islands many small cities and towns. Outside however, adventures await with hiking trails, biking trails and natural areas including the reserve of Lilleau des Niges and others. Bird lovers, naturalists and those who just enjoy the beauty of nature are never disappointed on this lovely French Island.

Île d’Yeu or the Isle of Yeu is another small island just off the coast of western France in the Pays de la Loire region. A long history and the natural beauty of this island are its major draws today. In the past as well as today, the island have become famous for their lobster and tuna fisheries. Evidence of this long history can still be found on rocks around the island which date back to Neolithic times. Much later, during the 10th century, Monks made their way to the island. This history can still be found in popular sites and attractions all around the island including popular attractions such as the megalithic monuments and the remains of historic structures including castles which remain.

Belle Isle, the last of our islands is found just off the coast of Brittany. Sharp cliffs, grand views, stunning beaches, and protected ecosystems which are quickly disappearing from other areas are just some of what draw thousands to this lovely island. Separated from the mainland thousands of years ago, its seclusion and its beaches make it a popular destination for seasonal visitors from the mainland in addition to others.  A long history and much more make this a must see.

From the historic Noirmoutier to the island of Tahiti, visit France’s Islands and find out what you have been missing.

Island Trader Vacations reviews news, tips, information and more to help you travel. Come back again and enjoy the continuing series of divine island destinations around the world with Island Trader Vacations Reviews.

Click here to see another island review in our Divine Island Series.

Island Trader Vacations Reviews Samos

samossm 300x200 Island Trader Vacations Reviews SamosA lovely Greek Island in the Eastern Aegean Sea, Samos has a long history, a source of legend and rich in historic sites and stories of early man. Once a rich and powerful city state in ancient Greek and Roman times, the island is home to some of the most recognized and influential historic sites of the region today including a UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Heraion of Samos which includes the Eupalinian aqueduct. Birthplace of Pythagoras and Epicurus it was also well noted for its shipyards. From its history to its wine and of course its beaches, take a closer look at this extraordinary island and all it has to offer you.

History is abundant on all the Greek Islands including Samos and of all these historic sites, Pythagoreion and Heraion of Samos is perhaps the best known. The remains of two impressive classical examples of architecture, they help tell the story of the island’s history. The Pythagoreion was  fortified port with both Roman and Greek monuments and the location of the tunnel of Eupalinos or the Eupalinian aqueduct dating back to the 6th century BC. The Heraion of Samos was a sanctuary which itself, dates back to the 8th century BC. Home to a temple to the goddess Hera, it was the first of the gigantic Ionic temples but was destroyed long ago.

Other historic sites and areas of interest on Samos range from its renowned museums including the Archaeological Museum of Vathi in Samos, the Archaeological Collection of Pythagorio and The Fossil Museum of Samos, just to name a few, to other structures of historic import including the Profitis Ilias monastery on Samos and the Church of Agios Spyridon as well.

Regarded as on of the most beautiful of the Hellenic Islands, Samos is home to popular beaches, beautiful peaceful areas as well as massive mountains and sheer slopes.  Samos offers easy to moderate hikes on paths relatively well maintained to difficult and at various altitudes throughout the island. In addition to hiking however, the beaches offer visitors the opportunity to just relax and enjoy the beautify of the island from as well. Megalo Seitani  is a popular destination for those who enjoy both hiking and beaches as it is located on the northwest coast and roads do not exist. Karlovassi is a much more convenient beach area which is reachable by car and offers sunbeds and umbrellas nearby as well.  Just off the beaten path, many people enjoy visiting the waterfalls of Potami as well. Famous for their beauty, it is a great place for a little hike and some beautiful sites.

A peaceful island known for its pleasant people and its generally laid back atmosphere, Samos is a wonderful option for those looking to stay away from the larger crowds found around Athens.

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Celebrate In New Orleans In April With Island Trader Vacations Reviews

neworleans copy 300x300 Celebrate In New Orleans In April With Island Trader Vacations ReviewsNew Orleans is a cultural, historic and food paradise. Celebrating festivals and events throughout the year, one of the oldest and the biggest is the famous French Quarter Festival which begins today.  Running for 4 days, this annual event is hosted by French Quarter Festival Inc and is just one of three annual events which are put on by this nonprofit organization. Dedicated to promoting the city of New Orleans, this festival and others put on by French Quarter Festival Inc are meant to showcase the events, heritage, culture and food unique to the region. Named the South’s largest free festival, we invite you to take a closer look at this exciting event and all it has to offer you when you travel to New Orleans, a top U.S. destination for travel.

French Quarter Fest – April 10-13, 2014

Sponsored by Chevron, the French Quarter Fest is dedicated to supporting the local music community.  Featuring only local musicians, it has over 20 stages which will feature music from gospel to funk and classical to Cajun, anything New Orleans has, the French Quarter Fest will feature.  A four day musical event, the festival is the largest free music event in the U.S. and features over 400 hours of free local music. Taking place in the French Quarter, the festival also features plenty of other fun and of course, food. Serving the World’ Largest Jazz Brunch in addition to providing food booths operated by local restaurants, no one goes hungry during this event.

The Music

Of course, the star of this music festival is the music.  Bag of Donuts, Big Al, Panorama Jazz Band, PJ Morton and hundreds of other acts will keep you tapping along this year. The first performer of this years event is New Orleans native, blue singer ‘BIG AL’ Carson. Born in 1953, he is an American blue and Jazz singer who performs regularly.

The Food

As food ravel continues to grow in popularity, destinations known for their food like New Orleans have been featuring their finest in festivals and events including French Quarter Fest. While the festival has been in operation for over 30 years, this year’s food promises to be the best yet. Featured restaurants in 2014 include Café Reconcile, Ristorante Carmelo and Antoine’s Restaurant. Over 200 restaurants will be featured this year including one of its longest participants the Vaucresson Sausage Company

Future Festivals

The French Quarter Fest is usually the second full weekend in April so if you can’t make it this year, there is always next year. Already scheduled future festivals include:

  • 2015 – April 9th – 12th
  • 2016 – April 7th – 10th
  • 2017 – April 6th – 9th

Island Trader Vacations reviews news, events, destinations and areas of interest to help you make the most of your travels and vacations now and for years to come. Be inspired and travel more with Island Trader Vacations reviews.

Island Trader Vacations Reviews Portland Head and Shoulders Above The Rest

Hopssm 300x220 Island Trader Vacations Reviews Portland Head and Shoulders Above The RestPortland Oregon has recently been named the Beer Capital of the World. Home to more breweries than any other city on earth, the locals lovingly refer to Portland as “Beervana”. A cultural mecca in Oregon, we invite you to learn more about this growing destination for tourism today.

A major U.S. destination situated at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers, it is home to around 600,000 residents and welcomes millions of visitors each year. Incorporated in 1851, Portland is located near to the end of the historic Oregon Trail and is the county seat of Multnomah County.  Named one of the most environmentally conscious cities in the world, it is noted for its land use as well as its vast green space and investment in light rail. Home to cultural sites and more, Portland is fast gaining notoriety for its growing brew appeal. Already home to hundreds of microbreweries and microdistilleries, the beer industry continues to grow and represents one of its most popular features.

Breweries – Currently, Portland is home to over 50 breweries. From the originals such as Widmer Brothers and BridgePort Brewing to newer additions such as Laurelwood and Coalition, these breweries offer visitors a chance to taste what sets Portland apart from others

From regular bars and taverns to its less than average brew n’ view theatres, there is plenty to choose from in the city not to mention out of town. The Columbia River Gorge also offers a growing brewing industry and its taste combined with the awe inspiring views makes it a great destination to visit.

For the festival goers, no time of the year is bad to visit. Winter or summer festivals in addition to Oregon Craft Beer Month provide ample opportunities to taste the wonderful Portland flavors.  July is the biggest and best, Oregon Craft Beer Month. During this month, events including Puckerfest, Portland International Beer Fest and the Oregon Brewers Festival are just some of the popular events. Live music, food, and of course, beer make this a beer lovers paradise each year.

Beer aside, Portland is recognized for its many cultural, historic and natural features as well which include its parks including Holly Farm Parka and the Portland Japanese Garden as well as the Oregon Zoo, Pittock Mansion, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and of course the Portland Farmers Market.

Island Trader Vacations reviews the destinations, tips and news to help you travel. Travel and be inspired when you travel with Island Trader Vacations reviews.

Island Trader Vacations Reviews Bimini

biminism 300x225 Island Trader Vacations Reviews BiminiAn outlying island of the Bahamas, Bimini is the smallest of the Out Islands and is becoming infamous for its peace, amenities and its stunning beaches. A small island with big charm, Bimini may be only 30 minutes from Nassau but is worlds away.

Not just a single island, Bimini is actually a group of a number of small islands and cays, 2 of which are its main islands, North and South Bimini. While North Bimini is the most visited, even it offers a peace that is almost unheard of in other parts of the Bahamas.

What to do

If you really want to go somewhere, there is likely always a reason. While there aren’t many reasons to choose Bimini over any other Bahamian island, the reasons for travel that do exist are great. Most famous to fishermen of late, Bimini is often referred to as an “island in the stream”. Located on the edge of an underwater cliff and the Gulf Stream, the waters around Bimini are literally teeming with life.  Bonefish and dolphins, sea turtles and sharks abound throughout the region and offer some of the best snorkeling, diving and fishing anywhere in the world.

The history of these islands offers a number of other unique destinations, some of its famous reasons for travel. From rum runners to ancient Lucayans, these historic sites include the Bimini Road, Bimini Museum and Concrete Ship.

Bimini Road – Also known as the Bimini Wall, this underwater formation located near the island of North Bimini was first discovered in 1968. While many scientists today believe that Bimini Road is actually a natural feature, some still believe that it is an ancient road or wall built long ago and led to the ancient city of Atlantis. Whether you believe in Atlantis or not, Bimini road is a must see. Located in only 20 feet of water, divers can easily explore the area.

Concrete Ship – The Concrete Ship is another must see attraction. Actually the remains of the S. S. Sapona whch was grounded in 1926 during a hurricane, it has a rich history relating to the rumrunners of the past and is one of the most easily accessible and popular dive sites.

Fountain of Youth – Does it really exist? Some believe it does. Stories of Ponce de Leon’s search for the Fountain of Youth which led him to this part of the Bahamas are the basis of legends which still exist today. The Fountain of Youth is believed to exist somewhere in the flats and pools of South Bimini or perhaps the “Healing Hole” near Easter Cay is the famed Fountain.

Beaches are also popular in Bimini. Known for their beauty, Bimini’s best range from the most popular including Tiki Hut Beach and Radio Beach, to the most remote and secluded including Turtle Rocks and North Cat Cay.

Whether exploring the history, relaxing on the sugar sand beaches or enjoying the peace and tranquility of the minor cays, this is one destination worth exploring.

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