Visit the Majestic Palouse Falls in Washington

Palouse Falls, located in the city of Washington, is 4miles away from the junction of the Palouse River and Snake River.

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The Falls is in the southeast of Washington, and its height comes around to 198ft. Hordes of people visit this place to learn first-hand about the Falls’ unique history and remarkable geology.      

Unique Attractions

The unique attractions of Palouse falls include the magnificent 200 ft waterfall and 94 acres of the lush, green garden. Apart from these, tourists can enjoy the day by camping, hiking, or fishing. Windows are placed, which will give you a great view of under-water. A Science center is present which explains interesting facts. The colorful fountain is a treat to the eyes.    

A brief history of the place

The Falls was formerly known as “Aput Aput” (falling water). Later, the name changed to Palouse Falls. Glacial floods flew through the city of Washington during the Ice Age. Palouse Falls is one of the remains of this glacial flood and is more than a thousand years old. Washington’s Palouse Falls State Park was opened on 3rd June 1951, inside which the Falls is present. But people protested against it, saying, it would spoil the aura and beauty of the Falls. Finally, on 12th February 2014, Palouse Falls came to be known as the Official State Waterfall of Washington.     

Best attractions for kids and adults

A trip to Washington’s Palouse Falls State Park will surely make you fresh and energized. Both adults and kid can take a dip in the refreshing and invigorating water near the Falls. There is a picnic place nearby, where people can eat, sit, or lay down and enjoy the serenity. Tourists can also take a kayak ride and explore the Palouse River. The experience will offer great views and prove to be a thrilling and adventurous one. There are some grand villas and resorts near the park, where you can check-in, and enjoy a peaceful holiday.

Tours available at the park

1. Camping: There are plenty of camping spots in the park where you can set up your tent and feel nature at its purest and spend more time with it. Depending on the camping site, the cost varies. A primitive camping site costs around $12 whereas a location with all the amenities costs around $30 to $45. Washroom facilities and drinking water are also available. 

2. Hiking: The park envelops an area of 100 acres. Hiking is one of the best and viable options to explore the untrodden parts of the park. One can also trek to the top of the mountain to get a fantastic view of the Falls.

3. Boat ride: If you want to experience the best of Palouse Falls and River, take a trip on Kayak for a fun-filled ride offering a stunning and picturesque view.

A State Discover Pass is necessary to visit the Palouse Falls and Park. Make sure to get one and display it on the dashboard of your vehicle. 

Best food-joints and restaurants

This place is known for its palatable food and gorgeous eateries. Some exceptional eateries are:

1. Sonny’s Tavern of Washtucna: Quality and delicious food at pocket-friendly prices on lunch and dinner. It has a bar and pub attached to it.

2. Snake River Grill: Known for their tasty barbecue and American cuisine. They serve a great lunch.

3. Java Bloom: Great place for smoothies, coffee, and other beverages.

These restaurants are close to Palouse Falls, and you must visit the places at any cost! Apart from these, many local eateries have been set up near the park. While you are at it, try some of the local delicacies as well.  

Wrapping up

If you are planning a trip to the United States, make sure to add Washington on your tour list. The Palouse Falls and the park is a must-visit if you go to Washington. The waterfall will be a feast to your eyes. The clean, peaceful, and lush-green garden will rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul. The remarkable food and peaceful stay will leave you craving for more.  

The Well that Swallows the Pacific Ocean

Formed due to the waves crashing into the same site over the years, this unique wonder of nature seems like a gaping hole in the Pacific.

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Although this one-of-a-kind Well is not bottomless, the twenty feet deep well appears to be swallowing the entire Pacific Ocean inside. During the high tide, it is not a sight for the faint-hearted. However, it is a treat for the eyes and comes under the must-visit places in Oregon, USA. It is stunning to look at and makes spectators stare in awe at the breathtaking feature.

Unique Attractions

The Thor’s Well, in reality, is a hole in a rock formation which is about twenty feet deep. During the high tide, it looks like the Pacific Ocean is draining into a circular hole located in the middle of Cape Perpetua, south of Yachats, Oregon. The seemingly bottomless hole is also known as the “gate to hell” or “the drainpipe of the Pacific.” When the hole is full, the water creates a violent spray that bubbles all over the rocks. However, during the low tide, it is a more peaceful sight to witness. The sheer beauty of this place encourages tourists, nature lovers, photography enthusiasts, young adults, and kids to visit this wonder in Oregon.

Another major attraction is the Devil’s Churn located in Cape Perpetua. It is an inlet that has been carved into the rocks throughout thousands of years. As it is a rock structure that collapsed on itself, it can spray water up to hundreds of feet during the high tide.

The “Sprouting Horn” is another major attraction in this area. This cave that developed along the coast was formed over a long time. The water and air get funneled in the open space, which in turn leads to the formation of pressure inside the cave. When the pressure exceeds the normal limits, the water spurts out, thereby creating an ocean geyser. It is a mesmerizing sight to watch.

The Oregon coast has so many of such ocean attractions that it has come to be included in the “Seven Wonders of Oregon.” The Thor’s Well attracts thousands of tourists every year who come to witness the grandeur and beauty of the oceans and the marvels of these unique attractions. These wonders of nature make up for the perfect tourist spot for young adults and curious kids as well.

Brief History

Structures like Thor’s Well are formed over long periods geologically. They begin as a sea cave and with time, the top of the cave collapses. An opening is created where the tides from below shoot water upwards with dramatic force. The main reason behind the creation of Thor’s Well was the crashing of the waves of the Pacific Ocean on the same area, over a very long period. 

Restaurants and Local food spots

Being located on the Oregon coast, this place is famous for its variety of seafood. The spectacular beauty of nature coupled with lip-smacking delicacies attracts young travelers and kids too. Some of the most well-known restaurants in this area include The Luna Sea Fish House, The Drift Inn Hotel and Restaurant, Ona Restaurant & Lounge, Yachats Brewing + Farmstore, Adobe Restaurant and Lounge, LeRoy’s Blue Whale, The Sea Note Restaurant & Lounge and the like. 

Thor’s Well is one of the most visited tourist spots on the Oregon Coast owing to the spectacular and exciting natural beauty that can pique anyone’s interest. It is a must-see if you are traveling to Oregon, USA, and one of the best places for amateur and professional photographers to click some fascinating nature pictures.

A Horseshoe-Shaped Rock Art

The “Horseshoe Bend” near Page, Arizona, United States is an incised meander of the Colorado River in the shape of a horseshoe.

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It is located about 4 miles southwest of Page, within Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (GCNRA), and one of the few unique attractions in the Arizona state. 

Brief History

The shape of this most famous tourist attraction is horseshoe-shaped, and hence, the name “Horseshoe Bend.” River Colorado flows around this dramatic landform. Geologists believe that as the river was headed south toward the sea, it went down the steepest slope. Meanders and circles were made by the river in this process and caused the river to cut through the layers of sandstone creating the bend. 

Unique Attractions

If you are a person with crazy wanderlust, then this should make the top of your must-see destination list for the following unique reasons. 

  • Different layers of stone and their beauty can stun you in awe as you reach the rim of Horseshoe Bend. Sandstone, mudstone, and sedimentary rocks have taken millions of years to form layers and accumulate atop one another. Among these, one of the most exciting layers is the one contacting the “Navajo Sandstone.” What makes it so unique is that the Navajo Sandstone is made up of a 200 million-year-old sand sea’s cemented sand. Horseshoe Bend is also possibly the most extensive dune system in North America. 
  • Native Anasazi and Ancestral Puebloans have been believed to have left behind “petroglyphs,” which is the scientific term for “rock art.” 
  • The Glen Canyon National Recreational Area which surrounds Horseshoe bend is also home to a significant number of species of ‘flora and fauna.’
  • The area has near 900 species of plants, mammals, carnivores, 27 species of lizards, and seven types of amphibians.
  • The Colorado River is also home for numerous fish and birds and some notable avian species.

Attractions for adults, young adults, and children

The Horseshoe bend is an ideal destination for a complete family tour. People of all ages will find this place mesmerizing and fascinating. 

  • For adults, this landform has terrific hiking destinations to challenge themselves. You will have to make a 0.75-mile hike to reach the rim of the Horseshoe bend, and you are guaranteed to stand in awe, looking at the different layers of stone. You can also plan a romantic sunset event. 
  • The boat tour can excite kids around this humongous landform structure. Also, visiting the GCNRA can give the kids as they host some of the vulnerable and endangered species. 

Tours 

As this is a place which is usually teeming with tourists and visitors, there are a lot of tours made available and parks created in specific regions. The upper and the lower antelope canyon are the regions of the landform. While some want to hike through these canyons, others might want to take a circling boat tour around the landform. 

Food 

There are several eateries near the Horseshoe Bend spanning across two to six kilometers from the attraction. The cuisine prevalent in the area is eclectic with dishes like waffles, steak, Texas barbeque, and Pizza making regular appearances. Here is a list of few restaurants you could visit on your way to or back from Horseshoe Bend:

  • BirdHouse
  • Into the Grand
  • Big John’s Texas BBQ
  • Fiesta Mexicana
  • Ranch House Grille
  • Slackers

ConclusionThis unusual rock formation has over a million visitors every year. Although the Horseshoe Bend is a fantastic choice to go on a holiday. Your tour can be made more memorable and meaningful in every way if you have someone to guide you and take you to the right places.

The accidental discovery of nature’s trove

A gorgeous jade green pool with a fifty-foot waterfall would be the last thing people associate with Texas,

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but the locals of Austin have known about this sweet spot for years. Many locals would drive 45 minutes from Austin for a refreshing jaunt in the pool on those sweltering hot days. And you can visit this gem of place too.

Unique Attractions

Hamilton Pool Preserve is a naturally-formed pool in Texas, United States of America. It is located 37 miles west of Austin, Texas. The Hamilton Pool Preserve is 232 acres of protected natural habitat. The pool has jade green water and is surrounded by large slabs of limestone. Stalactites grow from the ceiling of the cliffs of limestone. The water can reach a temperature of 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter. The Hamilton Creek flows over the limestone and into the pool, creating a fifty-foot waterfall. Curiously, even during dry weather, there is still a trickle of water into the pool, and the level of water remains constant.

The Hamilton Pool Preserve is home to a lot of birds, fish, animals, and plants. It was declared a protected habitat in 1980 and is now a recovering ecosystem. The chatterbox orchid, the eastern red bay, and the bald cypress are among some of the flora that grows in this region.

Brief History

 The pool was formed by the collapse of an underground river due to soil erosion. However, worry not because the collapse occurred thousands of years ago and the area is quite stable now. In the 1860s, Morgan C. Hamilton owned the property. In the 1880s, the Reimers’ family bought the property, and it said that the eight-year-old son was the one who discovered this pool. As soon as the family realized the recreational value of the grotto, they opened it up for public use.

In 1985, the Travis County bought the property off of the Reimer family to start restoration practices. The ecosystem was becoming unbalanced due to the unchecked flow of people visiting the pool. Now the ecosystem is in the process of restoration due to the work of wildlife officials.

What you need to know about Hamilton Pool

  • The entry of a vehicle is $15. There is a senior citizen discount available. The reservation fee is $11 and non-refundable. Only cash is accepted. You could pay with a check, but there is no guarantee that it will be accepted.
  • A reservation is required for entry from March 1st to October 31st and at the weekends in November and December.
  • The preserve is open from 9 am to 6 pm, and no entry is allowed after 5:30 pm.
  • You have to hike for 20 minutes to get from the parking lot to the preserve. So be prepared for steep slopes.
  • There are picnic tables, hiking trails, and restrooms but no amenities for drinking water so you will need to bring water. Glass bottles and alcohol cannot be taken into the preserve. But there are several restaurants on the highway leading to the preserve, most of them famous for barbeques in pure Texan form.
  • At times of high bacteria levels, visitors are not allowed to swim. Life jackets will be provided, but there are no lifeguards.

Attractions for all ages

Being a natural swimming hole, kids and young adults would love Hamilton Pool for they can swim in the water whenever there are no restrictions. Other attractions near the preserve that individuals of all ages would enjoy are Poodies Hilltop Roadhouse, Barton Creek Greenbelt, among others. 

Visit the Hamilton Pool Reserve for a refreshing break, much like an oasis in the desert.

Niagara: A Trinity of Falls

The name Niagara Falls is something most people have heard at least once in their life, being one of the world’s most beautiful waterfalls.

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Of the three falls, Horseshoe, American, and Bridal Viel, the former is the largest and straddles the international border between the two nations, while the other two lie entirely in the States.

Niagara Falls State Park

Home to American, Bridal Viel, and a portion of Horseshoe or Canadian Falls, Niagra Falls State Park is a state park in the city of Niagara Falls in New York, USA. It is the oldest continuously-operating state park in the nation and offers views of several attractions to a visitor. They are:

  • American Falls
  • Bridal Veil Falls
  • American portions of Canadian Falls
  • Niagara Gorge
  • Cave of the Winds
  • Goat Island
  • Luna Island
  • Prospect Point Observation Tower
  • Three Sisters Island
  • IMAX Theatre

Brief History of Niagara Falls State Park

The purpose of the Niagara Falls State Park and its association is to preserve the magnificent tourist attraction from exploitation by individuals with vested interests. Before the protection was in effect, Niagara Falls was under the control of private interests, and the public couldn’t freely access it.

In the 1860s, however, landscape architect Fredrick Law Olmsted took the lead in advocating the preservation of Niagara Falls. In 1879, State surveyor James T Gardner along with Olmsted created a special report on the condition of the falls urging the state to buy lands, to increase public access to the region.

Their campaign culminated in the formation of the Niagara Falls Association in 1883 that aimed to lobby New York to protect and acquire the falls from private interests. The lobbying bore fruits in April 1883 when then-governor Grover Cleveland signed into law a bill authorizing the acquirement of some land in the Niagara Falls village for a state reservation. The act resulted in the establishment of the Niagara Reservation in 1885, which later came to be known as the Niagara State Park.

Attractions and Tours

The Niagara Falls State Park is open on all days throughout the year, and tourists can visit them at any month or season. Each season brings out a unique face of the falls, mesmerizing the crowd to no end. The Park is a place where both adults and kids can thoroughly enjoy due to its various attractions. However, getting the pass to visit them can be tricky owing to the number of people that tour the falls. Tourists can either get individual passes for each attraction or choose to buy a discovery pass that gives them discounted prices at all displays.

Tours like Maid of the Mist and Cave of the Winds are an option that tourists choose for they hold an appeal to any demographic.

The aquarium and adventure theatre along with fireworks and illumination are attractions that fascinate children and adults, alike. After dusk, the latter is a sight to behold, while the former opens the minds of kids and younger adults to the water animals and the legends of Niagara Falls.

Restaurants and Local Food Spots

The Niagara State Park, however, has more to offer to tourists. It is home to various gift shops situated near the drive-in restaurant, The Top of Falls and the entrance to the Cave of the Winds, where tourists can buy souvenirs. Aside from these, one can enjoy delicious food at cafes and grills spread across the Prospect Point and Cave of the Winds. Alternatively, they can go fine dining at the drive-in restaurant Top of the Falls.

With a horde of attractions and the lure of the trinity of falls, Niagara Falls State Park is the dream tourist place of globetrotters and seems to attract millions of people across the globe every year.

Banff National Park: Top Your To-Visit Places With Canada’s First National Park

Located in Alberta, Canada, Banff National Park is one of the most famous tourist destinations in the country.

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Every year, around three million tourists visit the park. The little town of Banff is the only county in the park and is the center for all the activities. With breathtaking scenic views, this place offers its visitors opportunities for hiking, biking, skiing, and several other leisure activities. 

Unique sightings at Banff 

With the total area spread over 6,641 square kilometers, Banff National Park is filled with several breathtaking valleys, mountains, glaciers, forests, and rivers. 

Here is a list of the most interesting places in Banff:

  • Banff Park Museum
  • Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station
  • Tunnel Mountain
  • Mt. Norquay
  • After-Dark Lantern Tour
  • Lake Louise
  • Château Lake Louise
  • Moraine Lake
  • Lake Minnewanka

Brief History

Before Banff National Park was established, the area was considered a sacred place where medicines were gathered and healing procedures were done in the natural hot springs. 

The foundation of the town of Banff took place in the 1880s, specifically from tourism’s point-of-view. In 1883, during the Canadian Pacific Railway construction, three workers stumbled upon a series of natural hot springs and it led to what is now called Sulphur Mountain. 

Similarly, the Cave and Basin hot springs were also identified as a potential attraction for tourists. This pushed the Canadian government to create a reserve in 1885 to protect the springs and surrounding area, which, later on, was enlarged in 1887 and named the “Rocky Mountains Park of Canada”. Later on, it was renamed as Banff National Park, making it Canada’s first national park and the world’s third. Shortly afterward, an establishment was set up and a hotel was built, promoting the area as an international resort and spa.

The Banff National Park was included as the “Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks” by UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 for its “exceptional natural beauty” and “striking mountain landscape”.

Attractions for the younger crowd  

Since the park was established with the sole purpose of tourism, it facilitates people of all age groups, including the younger ones. With a good chance of seeing some of Canada’s wildlife, the Banff National Park is home to many black bears, elk, caribou, wolves, beavers, and grizzly bears making it a complete joy ride for the kids.

Below are some of the activities that are a must-try for the youngsters:

  • Bankhead Ghost Town
  • Fenland Trail
  • Banff Centre’s climbing wall
  • Sally Borden Fitness & Recreation Centre
  • Kingmik Dogsled Tours
  • Central Park Playground
  • Shaw Amphitheatre
  • Kids @ The Castle

Tour sites around Banff

Banff National Park is home to beautiful turquoise lakes mirroring the snow-covered peaks, along with glaciers and forests. Some of the most interesting places to visit in and around Banff are as follows:

  • Banff Park Museum
  • Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station
  • Moraine Lake
  • Fairmont Banff Springs
  • Sunshine Village
  • Lake Louise Ski Resort
  • Icefields Parkway
  • Bow Lake
  • Peyto Lake

Restaurants and local food spots

Every fall, the town of Banff holds the popular “The Banff Craft Beer Festival” for entire southern Alberta where some of the best craft beer is available. A huge upgrade from your average pub nights, this festival commemorates the birthplace of Canada’s national parks system. 

If that is not enough, this beautiful place also has some of the best eateries you’ve ever visited and have got a view to die for. To name a few:

  • The Bison Restaurant
  • Balkan Restaurant
  • Bear Street Tavern     
  • The Maple Leaf    
  • Tooloulous
  • The Old Spaghetti Factory
  • Samurai Sushi Bar & Restaurant
  • Ramen Arashi

Surely, you aren’t still undecided and fumbling around the web for places to visit this year? Top your to-visit places with Canada’s first national park and let the love in you for nature mate with the real nature at long last!

Welcome to the Magic City of Florida

Miami, an American city is a cultural, financial and economic hub of South Florida.

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The city covers a distance of about 56 square miles between the Everglades to the west and Biscayne Bay to the east. Being an ideal holiday destination, it is a paradise of oceanfront cities, urban hubs, and charming villages.

Unique Attractions

Miami offers a one-spot vacation destination for every travel freak, with beaches, great weather, history, culture, sports, and entertainment. Downtown Miami, segregated from the Atlantic Ocean by the Biscayne Bay and Miami Beach, is a contemporary metropolis and cultural treasure trove. From the museums to the streets of Little Havana, you can always find an abundance of things to do. Outside the city, but nearby, is Everglades National Park, recognized for its unusual ecosystem and wildlife.

Brief History of Miami

The area was acknowledged as “Biscayne Bay Country” in the late 19th century. The city of Miami gets its name from Miami River, originated from the Mayaimi, the historic name of Lake Okeechobee and the Native Americans that lived around it. Thousands of years before Europeans arrived, a large portion of south-east Florida was occupied by Tequestas. In 1566, admiral Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, Florida’s first governor, demanded the area for Spain. Consequently, the Miami area became a site of fighting in the Second Seminole War. It authoritatively became a city in 1896 after local businesswoman Julia Tuttle favored one railroad magnate to extend the area—making Miami the only principal U.S. city to be founded by a woman. 

Attractions for the Youth

This city is also popular for its white-sand beaches, neon-lit nightclubs, and world-class contemporary art galleries. You can come here for relaxing in year-round sunlight, partying to anything from techno to Cuban salsa and visiting top art exhibitions and Michelin-star restaurants. The Coral Castle and Miami Marine Stadium, located on Virginia Key, is just another of Miami’s unique architectural gems. 

Touring Destinations

The Art Deco District in Miami Beach is well thought of as one of the most captivating in the world for its nightclubs, beaches, historical buildings, and shopping. The Miami Open, the Winter Music Conference, Art Basel, the South Beach Wine and Food Festival, and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Miami are such annual events which attract millions of people every year. Boating, sailing, and fishing are quite popular outdoor activities as the city is a home of numerous marinas, rivers, bays, canals and the Atlantic Ocean. Biscayne Bay has diverse coral reefs that make snorkeling and scuba diving popular. The city includes 80 parks and gardens. The most magnificent and attractive parks are Bayfront Park and Museum Park, Tropical ParkPeacock ParkVirginia Key, and Watson Island.

Other famous cultural attractions in or near Miami cover Zoo MiamiJungle Island, the Miami SeaquariumMonkey JungleCharles Deering EstateFairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, and Key Biscayne.

Cuisine

Magic City food is like none other because you’re receiving a trustworthy variety of Latin American and Caribbean foods. Most dishes incorporate lots of meat and sweet carbs. By combining the two with American cuisine, it has reproduced a unique South Florida style of cooking known as Floribbean cuisine. Extensively available throughout Miami and South Florida, it can also be found in restaurant chains such as Pollo Tropical.

Cuban sandwich, medianoche, Cuban espresso, and croquetas have grown in popularity among all Miamians and have become symbols of the city’s different cuisine. The Versailles restaurant in Little Havana is one of the remnant eateries of Miami. Miami is also known for its seafood, with many seafood establishments located along the Miami River, in and around Biscayne Bay. 

Bring your family or gang to experience the beaches and residential districts of metropolitan Miami. You’re assured to have fun in the sun.

Mount Wutai: A Seraphic Experience

Located amidst the crown of flat mountains is the sacred Buddhist site of Mount Wutai or better known as Wutaishan in Chinese.

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A host to 53 monasteries, it holds few of the most important monasteries of China and is “First among the four great mountains” in China. It was made a UNESCO Heritage Site in 2009. 

Unique Attractions

Here are the must-visit places and unique attractions of Mount Wutai:

  • Xiantong Temple
  • Dailuo Ding
  • Taiyuan Temple and Shuxiang Temple
  • Nanchan Temple

Brief History

Mount Wutai was the first mountain to be identified as sacred and was done with the help of a passage located in Avatamsaka Sūtra signifying the home of many bodhisattvas. It is also home to a few of the oldest buildings in China, going back to the era of the Tang Dynasty. The main hall of Nanchan Temple and the East Hall of Foguang Temple are very old and standing strong, also serving as a major tourist attraction

The East Main Hall of Foguang Temple is adorned with life-sized clay sculptures representing ancient stories of Buddhism. The mountains and the temples go hand in hand, and so one cannot separate the two from the other. During the winters, the roofs covered with snow paths, lined by pine cones, willow trees, and firs turn the place surreal, so much so that it has been celebrated and cherished by Buddhist architecture. 

The spectacular layout residing in Mount Wutai is a complex amalgamation of Buddhist architectures, Nepal’s idea of sacred mountains and Mongolian excellence. It is a one-stop destination to witness the richness of different cultures across borders. 

Things to do at Mount Wutai and Touring Destinations

Situated amongst five different peaks, Mount Wutai serves as a perfect trekking trail for adventure lovers. The trek starts from Mount Wutai base-camp which is 60kms from the railway station. The trekking trail is of 55kms which is suggested to be completed in a clockwise manner by the Chinese tradition. 

  • Xiantong Temple:

Surrounded by the holy Mount Wutai, there are many temples in Taihuai Town, Xiantong Temple being the oldest. It was built in A.D. 68 and was the ancient temple for many royal families to come. To experience years of heritage, one must visit this temple. 

  • Dailuo Ding:

This one is a religious site and is considered to be one of the most visited tourist attractions. It’s a gem in the crown. It beholds five famous Ksitigarbha statues, aiding to religious pilgrims. The five mountains that surround this beautiful area are represented by these five statues. One can reach the top by various means

  • Taiyuan Temple and Shuxiang Temple:

Located close to Xiantong Temple are two other temples known for their religious temperaments.

  • Nanchan Temple:

On the way to Taiyuan, 177kms south from Mount Wutai,  Nanchan Temple is situated. It is home to the oldest timber architecture in China, beholds 70 bricks adorned with carvings, representing the rare art of the Tang Dynasty.

Food Attractions

Various small restaurants offer buffet breakfast for ¥10. For a cheaper meal, you can opt for ¥2 yóutiáo and ¥3 dòuhuā. Their famous fried noodles and soup are pretty good and reasonable at ¥10.  The regular rice dishes are ¥15-¥20 per serving. The local delicacy consists of a mushroom which comes in various options. For savoring the exquisite texture of mushrooms, it is suggested to eat at a restaurant that can cost up to ¥277. The monasteries also offer food free of cost to every pilgrim which is done according to certain rules. But be sure, the food is a must-try. 

To experience a holy spree with a surreal scenic view, visit Mount Wutai and get your soul refreshed. 

Rapa Nui: An Impervious Cultural Marvel

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A unique, an unswayed land laid down by a society of Polynesian culture is home to huge eccentric stone sculptures known as moai.  Rapa Nui, better known as the Easter Island, in a Chilean island of southeastern Pacific Ocean houses this magnificent monumental enigma. 

Unique Attractions

Some of the must-visit places and unique attractions of Easter Island are as follows:

  • Orongo Ceremonial Village
  • Rano Raraku
  • Anakena Beach

Brief History

The Easter Island houses 1000 moai in an undisturbed area of wilderness. It is an extraordinary representation of the Polynesian culture. This area was colonized by a group of settlers from East Polynesia, manifested between the 11th and the 17th century. The sculptures erected in a scarce pattern are a portrayal of their ancestral families. It was awarded the status of UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996 and is considered one of the most important archeological sites, creating a mirror to societies that existed years ago. It is believed to have more than 300 ceremonial platforms, thousands of agricultural structures, funeral rites, few housing and production, and various other activities. 

The most striking of all the pieces are the moai ranging in height from 2-20m which were carved using simple yet powerful tools made up of yellow-brown lava tuff and hard basalt. The sculptures gamut the entire process carried out during the establishment of each of these moai. All of these are remarkably distinct with their raised rectangular platform filled with rubble and stones, a ramp paved with spherical beach pebbles and a leveled platform in front of all of these. Other valuable archeological structures are the caves filled with rock art. 

The colonization of Polynesian people is said to have been declined due to the gradual loss of natural resource availability during the 16th Century. This downturn led to the spiritual transformation and eventual destruction of these memorial monuments. The original ancient cult was replaced by a group of the bird-man cult that holds testimony to the ceremonial village at Rano Kau volcano. This cult could be seen around the 19th century, marked by the construction of 54 semi-subterranean stone houses with elliptical floor plans. 

Today, the descendants of ancient Rapa Nui dwell in the area along with some immigrants of sundry backgrounds.

Tourist Attractions for the Young and Old Alike 

  • Orongo Ceremonial Village:

Enriched by endemic species of organisms, the Orongo Ceremonial Village resides on floating totora reeds. The crater lake of Rano Kau sharply resembles a cauldron. From the edge of the crater, one can see the oceanic blue waters 300 meters below. It is one of the most substantial landscapes in the world. The visiting time is from 9:30 am-5:30 pm. 

  • Rano Raraku:

Experience the turning back of time into the times of Polynesian existence by visiting the Rano Raraku, which was the land raw material for building moai. It’s a dramatic display of structures in different stages of construction. 

  • Anakena Beach: 

A beach reflecting the exquisite landscape of the Chilean Island welcomes you to witness the seven moai adorned with topknots. Overlooking the Ahu Nau Nau stand the Ahu Ature Huki on the south side with its solitary moai. 

What and Where to eat in Rapa Nui?

To experience the palate tickling food of Easter Island, one must visit restaurants such as:

  • The Cuisine Offered: Seafood, Contemporary, Polynesian, Chilean, South American, International
  • Price: ₹₹ – ₹₹₹
  • Suggested Food: Ceviche, Fish, Jasmine Rice, Risotto
  • The Cuisine Offered: Fast Food
  • Price: ₹
  • Suggested Food: Empanadas, Seafood, Fries

This land was once inhabited by people completely unrendered by other parts of the world. Nobody is sure how these gigantic boulders were moved, or why they have got huge heads and a larger body. Come visit this land of mystery and find out for yourself.

A deadly and illegal Stairway to Heaven

Haiku Stairs, also known as Stairway to Heaven, is one of the greatest attraction of the island Oahu in Hawaii. It consists of 3, 922 steps that span across the Ko’olau mountain range. The Stairs leads up the mountain ridge with a steep set of stairs with only a handrail to prevent one from falling into the valley. Due to the word Haiku, the tourist attraction is often confused with the Japanese poetry genre. However, Stairway to Heaven gets its name from Hawaiian word Haʻikū, which means a sharp break, referring to the steep climb of the stairs.

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History of Haiku Stairs

As fairytale-ish, as the name sounds, the story of Haiku Stairs’ origin has a military touch. It all began when the US Navy decided to build the Haiku Radio Station, a top-secret facility to broadcast signals to Navy ships operating across the Pacific in 1942. To achieve the optimum height for the antennae, they chose to stretch them across the Haiku Valley.

The station started operating in 1943, and to transmit powerful signals, Navy needed a transmitter of greater reach, something that could only be possible with vacuum technology, at the time. Therefore, they decided to use an Alexanderson alternator that generates powerful low-frequency radio signals and requires a massive antenna.

Later, when the Navy was decommissioned in the 1950s, the US Coast Guard used the place for an Omega navigation system station. The stairs, originally, made of wood. However, in the mid-1950s, metals steps and ramps were chosen over wooden ones. Until 1987, Haiku Stairs were open to the public, but the same year, people no longer had access.

Haiku Stairs at Present

The restriction, however, did not stop interested individuals from climbing the stairs. There have been several incidents over the years when hikers have either lost their lives or been arrested for trespassing the closed site.

For several years, there have been debates over tearing the stairs down to avoid trespassing and repairing them to open for public access. As of 2019, neither of the options have been chosen, and the fight over usages rights remain at a stalemate.

In the meantime, several hikers sneak their way to the stairs from the backside, some lucky and some not. In 2012, comedian and singer Fritz Haschenpush died of a heart attack during his hike on the stairs which is one of many such incidents.

Another way of curbing the hikers is subjecting them to pay $1000 fine for trespassing if caught, and by increasing the security near the site. Additionally, police patrol through the area regularly, to look for miscreants and adventurers attempting to climb the stairs. Aside from law enforcement officials, even residents try to prevent the use of their properties to reach the stairs by installing booby traps. However, hikers remain undeterred and continue to hike at the area.

Is it suitable for children?

Due to the steep nature of the hike, the stairs are not recommended for adults, much less, children. At a whopping height of 2,120 feet, the trail is dangerous to climb, especially at its current precarious conditions.

However, since Haiku Stairs is within the Ko’olau mountain range, children and adult will find Kailua beach and circle island attractive.

Where to eat near Haiku Stairs?

Being enclosed in a mountain range famous for being a natural shield against volcanos, the area near Haiku Stares are peppered with various eateries. If authentic Hawaiian cuisine or Seafood is a visitor’s choice, they can head down Haleiwa Joe’s. However, if brunch or breakfast is the need, the best place to visit is Cafe Kalawe.

With the restriction and the steep hike, Haiku Stairs is certainly a  beacon. However, this acts as no hindrances to many hikers.