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Poland, known for its rich history, vibrant cities, and stunning landscapes, is also home to some of Europe's most picturesque villages. These small, often overlooked gems offer a glimpse into the country's rural beauty, traditional culture, and warm hospitality. In this article, we'll take you on a journey to explore the five most beautiful Polish villages that will capture your heart and provide a unique perspective on Poland's hidden treasures.

  • Kazimierz Dolny

Nestled on the banks of the Vistula River, Kazimierz Dolny is a postcard-perfect village known for its charming market square, colorful buildings, and artistic heritage. The village has long been a haven for painters and artists who come to capture its beauty. Wandering through the cobblestone streets, you'll encounter cozy cafes, art galleries, and a stunning Renaissance castle perched on a hill overlooking the town. The lush surrounding forests and riverbanks add to the village's enchantment, making it a favorite destination for nature lovers as well.

  • Zalipie

Zalipie, often referred to as the "Painted Village," is a unique and whimsical place that's truly one of a kind. Its claim to fame is the tradition of decorating houses, fences, and even doghouses with intricate floral motifs. The colorful flower paintings on white-washed buildings create an enchanting atmosphere that feels like something out of a fairytale. Zalipie's annual Painted Cottage Competition attracts artists and visitors from all over the world, making it a must-visit destination for art and culture enthusiasts.

  • Karpacz

Located at the foot of the picturesque Karkonosze Mountains, Karpacz is a charming mountain village that offers stunning natural beauty year-round. During the summer, it's a paradise for hikers and nature lovers, while in the winter, it becomes a snowy wonderland for skiers and snowboarders. The village is home to the Wang Church, a unique wooden church imported from Norway, and the majestic Książ Castle, a stunning example of European architecture. Karpacz is a perfect blend of natural beauty and historical charm.

  • Tarnów

Tarnów, often called the "Pearl of the Renaissance," is a historical gem in southern Poland. Its well-preserved Old Town boasts a wealth of beautifully restored buildings, including the grand Town Hall and the stunning Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul. The market square is a bustling hub of activity, with vibrant cafes and artisan shops. Tarnów's rich history and architectural heritage make it a captivating destination for history buffs and architecture enthusiasts.

  • Wieliczka

Wieliczka, a small village near Krakow, is renowned for its breathtaking Wieliczka Salt Mine, a UNESCO World Heritage site. While the salt mine itself is a fascinating underground world of chambers and tunnels carved from salt, the village above ground is equally charming. The picturesque wooden houses and well-preserved architecture provide a glimpse into Poland's past. Visitors can explore the village, enjoy traditional Polish cuisine, and then descend into the depths of the salt mine for an unforgettable underground adventure.

Poland's villages and towns are hidden treasures that offer a different perspective on this diverse and beautiful country. From the artistic allure of Kazimierz Dolny to the whimsical charm of Zalipie and the natural beauty of Karpacz, Tarnów, and Wieliczka, these villages showcase the rich cultural and historical tapestry of Poland. Exploring these enchanting villages will undoubtedly deepen your appreciation for the country's rural beauty and its warm and welcoming communities.

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Oregon, often referred to as the "Beaver State," is a treasure trove of natural beauty and cultural richness. Located in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States, this diverse state offers a wide range of attractions for visitors to explore. From stunning landscapes and outdoor adventures to vibrant urban experiences, Oregon has something for everyone. Here are eight of the top attractions that make Oregon a must-visit destination.

1. Crater Lake National Park:

Crater Lake is Oregon's crown jewel, renowned for its breathtaking blue waters and stunning natural beauty. Formed in the caldera of an ancient volcano, it is the deepest lake in the United States and one of the cleanest and clearest in the world. Visitors can enjoy scenic drives, hiking trails, and boat tours, taking in the mesmerizing views of this pristine natural wonder.

2. Mount Hood:

Mount Hood, an iconic stratovolcano, stands tall as the highest peak in Oregon. A year-round destination, it offers skiing and snowboarding in the winter and hiking, mountain biking, and camping in the summer. The Timberline Lodge, a historic mountain retreat, is a popular basecamp for adventurers.

3. Columbia River Gorge:

The Columbia River Gorge is a breathtaking river canyon that stretches for over 80 miles, dividing Oregon and Washington. Visitors can explore its many waterfalls, such as Multnomah Falls and Bridal Veil Falls, and enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, windsurfing, and bird watching. The scenic Historic Columbia River Highway is perfect for a leisurely drive.

4. Powell's City of Books:

Located in the heart of Portland, Powell's City of Books is a bibliophile's paradise. As one of the largest independent bookstores in the world, it boasts an extensive collection of new and used books across countless genres. Spend hours browsing the shelves in this literary wonderland.

5. Oregon Coast:

The Oregon Coast stretches for 363 miles along the Pacific Ocean, offering diverse landscapes from rugged cliffs to sandy beaches. Highlights include Cannon Beach with its iconic Haystack Rock, the charming town of Newport with its historic bayfront, and the unique Thor's Well, a natural sinkhole along the coastline.

6. Portland's Food Scene:

Portland is known for its eclectic and thriving food scene. From food carts serving global cuisine to trendy restaurants focusing on farm-to-table fare, the city has something to satisfy every palate. Don't miss the opportunity to explore neighborhoods like the Pearl District and Hawthorne, where culinary delights abound.

7. Oregon Wine Country:

The Willamette Valley, located just south of Portland, is Oregon's premier wine region. Known for its world-class Pinot Noir, the valley is home to numerous wineries and vineyards. Wine enthusiasts can indulge in tastings and scenic vineyard tours, making it a must-visit destination for oenophiles.

8. Smith Rock State Park:

For outdoor enthusiasts and rock climbers, Smith Rock State Park is a paradise. This dramatic landscape features towering rock formations and miles of hiking and climbing routes. Even if you're not a climber, the park offers excellent hiking trails with panoramic views of the Crooked River and the surrounding high desert.

Oregon's diverse attractions offer a little something for everyone, whether you're an outdoor adventurer, a culture connoisseur, or a food lover. With its stunning natural beauty and vibrant cities, Oregon is a destination that should be on every traveler's list. Explore the Beaver State and discover its unique blend of natural wonders and urban delights.

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Nestled in the heart of the Great Lakes region, Michigan is a diverse and captivating state that offers a myriad of attractions for both residents and visitors alike. Known as the "Great Lakes State," Michigan boasts stunning landscapes, vibrant cities, and a rich cultural heritage. Whether you're an outdoor enthusiast, a history buff, or a city slicker, there's something for everyone to enjoy in this charming Midwestern state. Here are the top eight tourist attractions that should be on your Michigan itinerary.

1. Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island, located in Lake Huron, is a step back in time to a simpler era. Accessible only by ferry, this car-free island is famous for its historic architecture, horse-drawn carriages, and fudge shops. Visitors can explore the Grand Hotel, a Victorian-era masterpiece, or rent bicycles to traverse the island's scenic trails. The island's stunning views of the Mackinac Bridge and its peaceful ambiance make it a truly unique destination.

2. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Stretching along Lake Superior's shoreline, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is a haven for nature lovers. This 42-mile stretch of colorful sandstone cliffs, caves, and waterfalls offers unparalleled beauty. Visitors can explore the area by hiking, kayaking, or taking boat tours to witness the stunning interplay of cliffs, forests, and the clear blue waters of Lake Superior.

3. The Henry Ford

For a dose of history and innovation, The Henry Ford complex in Dearborn is a must-visit. Comprising the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, Greenfield Village, and the Ford Rouge Factory Tour, this attraction offers insights into America's industrial and technological heritage. From historic homes to iconic vehicles, The Henry Ford offers a captivating journey through time.

4. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Another jewel among Michigan's natural wonders is the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. With its towering sand dunes, lush forests, and pristine beaches along Lake Michigan, it's an outdoor enthusiast's paradise. Visitors can hike the dunes, take scenic drives, or relax on the beaches while taking in the awe-inspiring vistas.

5. Detroit Institute of Arts

In the heart of Detroit, the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) stands as a cultural treasure trove. With a diverse collection spanning centuries and continents, the DIA features renowned works of art, from ancient to contemporary. From Diego Rivera's mesmerizing murals to Vincent van Gogh's self-portrait, the museum offers a journey through artistic expression.

6. Holland

Known for its vibrant tulip festivals and Dutch heritage, Holland is a charming city on the shores of Lake Michigan. Windmills, wooden shoes, and colorful tulip gardens transport visitors to a European village atmosphere. The sandy beaches, unique shops, and friendly community make Holland a delightful destination.

7. Traverse City

Nestled at the base of the Grand Traverse Bay, Traverse City is a hub for foodies and wine enthusiasts. The region's climate is ideal for producing wines, and visitors can explore numerous wineries along the Old Mission and Leelanau Peninsulas. The city's lively downtown area offers diverse dining options, boutique shopping, and cultural events.

8. Isle Royale National Park

For a true wilderness experience, Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior beckons adventurers. Accessible only by boat or seaplane, this remote island offers hiking, camping, and wildlife watching opportunities. Visitors might spot moose, wolves, and foxes as they explore pristine forests and rugged landscapes.

From the serene beauty of Mackinac Island to the rugged wilderness of Isle Royale, Michigan's diverse attractions offer something for every type of traveler. Whether you're drawn to history, nature, or cultural experiences, the Great Lakes State invites you to explore its treasures and create unforgettable memories. So, pack your bags, embark on an adventure, and discover the magic of Pure Michigan.

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"The best investment of my life" - this is how Tom Stuker talks about buying a lifetime ticket for flights with United Airlines. He made the transaction over 30 years ago, and now he boasts about the number of kilometers traveled and visited countries.

In 1990, the American airline United Airlines offered for sale a lifetime ticket on any number of flights for the price of 290,000. dollars.

It has flown over 37 million kilometers

Tom Stuker from New Jersey took up the offer. Today, after 33 years, the man talks about how he used his special ticket. The man claims that buying the ticket was "the best investment of his life".

So far, the 69-year-old has flown over 37 million kilometers during over 12,000 miles. flights. Together with his wife, he has been to 100 countries and, as he says, on over 120 honeymoon months. Once he was even on a continuous plane trip for 12 days, changing machines. Stuker is a frequent visitor of the line, so some of the employees already know him. The man has his favorite seat on the 1B plane, which he often manages to occupy.

Miles for gift cards

Not only the "free" flights turned out to be a profitable investment. Stuker also took an active part in the loyalty program, where a point is collected for miles traveled in the air.

The man exchanged miles for gift cards, which he used or sold, and for the money earned, among others, renovated his brother's house.

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Texas is a vast state with a diverse range of attractions, from big cities to national parks to historic sites. With so many options, it can be hard to decide which destinations to include in your itinerary. Here are some of the best tourist attractions in Texas that you won't want to miss.

  1. The Alamo: Located in San Antonio, the Alamo is a historic site that played a key role in the fight for Texas independence. Visitors can tour the chapel and barracks, see exhibits on Texas history, and learn about the famous Battle of the Alamo.
  2. NASA's Space Center Houston: This attraction, located in Houston, is a must-visit for space enthusiasts. Visitors can see real space shuttles and rockets, take a tour of NASA's mission control center, and even meet astronauts.
  3. Big Bend National Park: This stunning park, located in West Texas, features canyons, desert landscapes, and the Rio Grande river. Visitors can hike, camp, and explore the park's unique geology and wildlife.
  4. The River Walk: Also located in San Antonio, the River Walk is a network of walkways along the San Antonio River. Visitors can stroll past restaurants, shops, and bars, take a boat tour, and enjoy the colorful lights and decorations during the holiday season.
  5. The Texas State Capitol: Located in Austin, the Texas State Capitol is an impressive building with a rich history. Visitors can take a tour of the capitol, see the famous dome, and explore the surrounding grounds.
  6. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza: This museum, located in Dallas, explores the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Visitors can learn about the events of that fateful day, see exhibits on JFK's life and legacy, and view artifacts from the assassination.
  7. Galveston Island: This barrier island off the coast of Texas is a popular tourist destination with beaches, amusement parks, and historic architecture. Visitors can swim, fish, and relax on the beach, explore the island's history, and even take a ghost tour.
  8. Fort Worth Stockyards: This historic district in Fort Worth celebrates Texas's cowboy culture. Visitors can watch a cattle drive, see a rodeo, and explore the many shops, restaurants, and bars that make up the stockyards.

These are just a few of the many tourist attractions in Texas. With its diverse range of destinations, there's something for everyone in the Lone Star State.

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Madeira is 500km from the African coast and 1000km from the European continent, 1 1/ 2 hours from the Portuguese mainland, about 3 hours from all major European countries. Like most islands of Europe, Madeira is well connected with flights from mainland Europe, the Azores, and Britain. There is a regular ferry connecting Funchal with Porto Santo, and Madeira has its own airport, which has some services to Europe.

A typical holiday to Madeira is based in or around Funchal (many major hotels are west of Funchal) and exploring Madeira is done via organised day trips or by renting a car. It is almost always sunny in Porto Santo and Funchal, as well as on the south shores of Madeira Island.

Within the Madeira Islands are dramatic natural landscapes, imposing mountains, and tropical forests, as well as a population that is welcoming, reflecting the laid-back nature of the Portuguese. Madeira is more than beaches and sunshine, and Ribeiro Frio Natural Park is a great place to explore if you would like a different outlook to life on the island. Hike any of the numerous trails crisscrossing this park, and explore the scenic beauty of the islands forests and rugged mountain environments, which is easily one of the best things to do in Madeira.

Madeira is not a classic beach vacation destination, Madeira is the place to get off and explore, soak up some local culture, or seek solitude by hiking on any one of the gorgeous trails that traverse the island. Madeira is one of the four islands of the Madeira Archipelago, offering British-style hotels and Michelin-starred restaurants, and a variety of adventurous ways to explore the islands waterfalls and lush landscapes. Madeira is varied and charming, one of the truly unique vacation destinations in Europe.

Originally built in 1927 as a way of welcoming those arriving on Madeira island by sea, this is an excellent photo opportunity, offering stunning views of Desertas (uninhabited islands) and Reis Magos and Galo beaches. Madeira is not just an island to lounge around the hotel pool on (although that is definitely cool, too), but one to hike, whale watch, rock climb, snorkel, and take the road out to the gorgeous towns along the coastline.

Madeira is just a short ferry trip away from Spains Canary Islands, and less than two hours from both the Azores and mainland Portugal by plane, making it an easy, multiple-day stop on a longer regional trip. Known as the Pearl of the Atlantic, Madeira has gorgeous natural landscapes, adventurous hiking, natural pools, waterfalls, great food, and a nearly tropical feel yet within the confines of a European destination.

This Portuguese archipelago is definitely tempting, and not only because it is once again featured in Englands Travel Green List. Situated just a few hundred miles from the West African coast, Portugals relatively small island of Madeira is an incredible destination. Yet...despite that, Madeira is usually treated like just another pitstop in an Atlantic cruise, leading to a lot of tourists visiting its capital city alone.

Not only does Funchal, the capital, offer the largest choice of places to stay in Madeira, but is where you will find the largest selection of restaurants, bars, and shops.

The most typical place to have Espetada is at Camara de Lobos, but it is a dish that is found at a lot of restaurants all over Madeira. You will find espetada throughout the island, served as an appetizer or a side, and also as a sandwich: a bao do caco sandwich topped with a rego is totally tasty.

I think a 10 days - 2 weeks is a good length for your trip to Madeira (and longer if you are looking to also explore Porto Santo Island). If you are going to Madeira, you are smart to book all legs of your trip in Portugal in one single ticketing process.

You will also want to factor in driving time for getting around Madeira and for changing weather that may keep you from visiting certain places. Remember, weather can change fast and unexpectedly throughout the year, especially in the mountain areas at the centre of the island. It is during summer when the majority of travellers focus on Madeira; therefore, you will find it harder to escape from the crowds during this time of the year.

If you are looking for sunshine on a trip to Madeira, I suggest planning a little flexibility, so you can check the weather and the webcams, and choose a half-day to visit less cloudy areas on the island. I would definitely recommend booking at least 2 different accommodations, so you get the chance to experience the different aspects of Madeira, and also cut down on travel time (especially if you are looking to catch sunrise).

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