Archives for September 2014

Sleeping Under the Northern Lights

It sounds crazy right? Who in their right mind would lie in the snow and to see the Northern Lights (Formally referred to as Aurora Borealis) while simultaneously try to fight off hypothermia. Well luckily that’s not exactly what’s happening, but it is the main idea behind the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort.

In northern Finland Aurora Borealis is visible roughly 200 nights a year, and until recently the only way to view what is named one of nature’s seven wonders, was to go cross country skiing, now there is a much more convenient and comfortable method. Thermal glass igloos are offered for accommodation from August to April to view what I can only imagine is a stunning site. The sparse vegetation and complete lack of light pollution near Finland’s national park Urho Kekkone provides the perfect place for the hotel’s location. Every single night millions of stars are able to be seen, and during the dark winter months the best views of the Northern Lights is available.

Glass Igloos

Each igloo has a toilet and a bed to fit two people. Twenty igloos all together and a sauna and showering area is shared in a building with an actual roof. Also available at the resort is an ice bar, and a snow chapel which is rebuilt every season.

Glass Igloo2

Unfortunately, the resort does not guarantee a view of the illusive natural wonder, they do however keep constant watch, and whenever the lights are visible a bell is rung, signaling their arrival.

With all this beauty and novelty, I have to say this is probably my dream honeymoon location, while most of my other locations I could see visiting alone, this one seems a little too secluded just to head up tot he north and hole up in an Igloo for a week or two. Though if you did manage to coerce someone into going with you, there’s no doubt that you would both find it to be an incredible experience.


Dobšinská Ice Cave

Slovakia Ice Cave


The next point of interest takes us to central Europe, to an underground cave located in Slovakia. The beautiful place is one of the largest ice caves in Europe, and one of the most famous in the world. The cave was discovered in 1871 and has been open to the public since, though it is thought to be round 250,000 years old, it was also the first cave in Europe with electricity to illuminate its confines.  The picture above is referred to as ‘The Hole’, and is the entrance to the attraction, inside The Slovak Paradise National Park. It takes thirty minutes of sightseeing trails to simply make it to the hole, from the village of Dobšinská.

The cave itself can be considered famous, in 2000 it was added to the UNESCO heritage list, and is the lowest ice cave in the world in terms of sea level.

Ice cave

The cave is halls and domes made completely of ice, a marvel of frozen water that is 1.230 long, and from what I can tell simply from pictures, breathtaking. It is also full of ice formations and glaciers that have reached up to the ceiling at points.

To take the tour you simply need ten Euro and a good pair of gloves, the temperature in the caves gets down to twenty six degrees Fahrenheit. The beauty and history is most certainly worth the cold, and the reason why this magnificent landmark has been added to my blog. So if you ever find yourself bored and in the middle of Europe, this icy underground kingdom may be just what you need to occupy your sightseeing time. As for me, I definitely hope to be crossing this one off the list in the near future, once I get over my fear of small spaces, that is.




Jellyfish Lake

Jellyfish Lake

In a place in the South Pacific ocean there is a island called Eli Malk in Palau, off the coast of Koror. That’s where my next adventure exists. A 12,000 year old lake, that came about after the ice age, trapped a community of jellyfish after being formed, so came the name, Jellyfish Lake. The jellyfish inhabiting the lake are called Moon Jellyfish (Aurelia) and Golden Jellyfish (Mastigias), both have adapted in unusual ways that are distinct to these colonies. With absolutely no predators and an abundance of algae to feed off, the jellyfish thrived in their new environment. Twice a day the jellyfish move in a massive group to keep up with the sun which feeds there food source. The lack of predators also allowed the jellyfish to become lax in there one defense mechanism. While they are still able to sting, it is so mild that humans can almost never feel it, this leads to an incredible experience that many around the world have taken advantage of.

You can actually swim with these jellyfish. whether it’s snorkeling or just getting into the water, gear free, any and all options are available. You must obtain a pass to enter into the lake, 100 dollars will give you a ten day, once in a life time experience.

Jellyfish lake swimmer


While this may be a beautiful and unique experience, there are many regulations and warnings that must also be followed, you have to keep a good distance between yourself and the hydrogen sulfide that lays about twenty feet below the surface, and diving is prohibited to maintain the ecosystems that lie at the bottom of the lake.

Despite the cost and the slight danger, this incredible lake definitely makes my ‘need to do’ list and the opportunity is something that anyone with a taste for adventure, and a liking for the ocean or outdoors should seriously consider adding to their own bucket list. But if you’re like me and you won’t be heading out to the South Pacific any time soon this video link is definitely recommended.


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Diwali: Festival of Lights

The Festival of Lights is featured in many religions  and cultures across the world, each with a different meaning and celebration, but in India, it is referred to as Diwali. Diwali is the mark of the Hindu new year and is celebrated on the 15th day of Kartika, around October for us. The festivities go on for almost five days and each day holds significance for the religion. The actual holiday is a religious one with a few different legends surrounding it, but the most popular is that it memorializes the return of Lord Rama (a Hindu deity referred to as The Ideal Avatar) after 14 years in exile and his conquest over a demon-king Ravana.

The observance of the festival is a beautiful one, fireworks and candles, lamps and bonfires, all of the light signifies the triumph of good over evil, or alternatively light over darkness.

All of India is illuminated for almost a week, the picture below is taken from a satellite during the festivities.

nasa picture over India


The chance to see India in all it’s glory is one of my dreams, this culture is so foreign to me and I have no greater wish then to experience it at this time of year when its heritage is on display for the entire world to ogle. I fully recommend giving this festival your full attention and researching it as much as possible, and hopefully at least one of us will be able to revel in it’s beauty. The pictures are only the slightest taste of the magnificence that can be experienced, imagine the light and the noise and all of the candles are something that needs to be seen in person, which is why i have added this festival to my bucket list of must sees before I die. I encourage you to add it to yours.

Diwali  3 Diwali 4 Diwali 5diwali 2   Diwali 1

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Blog Description

This blog is a place where I’m going to share all the places and things I’ve ever wanted to see or visit. It will include festivals, parties, and celebrations around the world, historic landmarks or simply beautiful geographic miracles. I suppose it’s my own personal travel bucket list.

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