Turn Your Home Into A Castle – Literally

Castles were bulwarks of the medieval era, dominating the landscape wherever they were erected. In the middle ages, they were primarily designed to be battlements and to defend vast tracts of land, but they still doubled up as homes.



With the invention of the cannon, castles ceased being defensive installations, but they didn’t end there. In the eighteenth century, people looked back on the castles of the medieval period with a kind of romantic fondness. They loved the chivalry, the tales of Arthur and the majesty that battlements evoked. As a result, they began building their own mock castles – homes that included elements of castles like rounded towers but were still luxury living accommodation nonetheless.


Golden Fort


One example of a castle that was built for living was Golden Hill Fort. This fort was built on the Isle of Wight back in the 19th century to defend against a French invasion. The fort itself was never actually used in battle. More than a hundred years later, after the Second World War, Golden Hill was converted into a series of beautiful apartments. These apartments became holiday homes where people could enjoy all that the Isle had to offer.


When Golden Hill was first bought by Kevin Clarke and Sean Cousins, it was a shell of a building. They worked tirelessly with local planning officials to return the building to its original state. That meant extending the building and getting a roofer to extend the roof, and making sure all 22 chimneys were of uniform height. According to Kevin, the roof was made waterproof for the first time in over a hundred years.




Now that the roof and the foundations are secure, Golden Hill Fort has been transformed with all manner of luxury conveniences. Guests enter the compound through a trick tunnel with electric gates at either end. When they’ve been through both gates, they enter the refurbished central courtyard, originally designed as a parade ground to muster the troops.

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There’s also other mod-cons like CCTV, allowing all entrances to the castle to be monitored remotely. On the roof, guests can enjoy communal gardens and stunning views of the island and the sea all around.




Having your own castle is by no means cheap. The average unit, which is just 1,386 to 3,250 square feet will set you back more than $600,000 to $1,500,000. When you consider the types of properties you could get for a similar cost, that’s a lot. But it’s not often that you get to live in a gated community from the middle ages, complete with battlements that’ll keep the riffraff and the French at bay.


According to David Brock from the heritage foundation, converting industrial forts into modern homes is relatively easy. Thanks to their modern designs, they share a similar design language with modern homes. But converting castles with stone towers is a lot more difficult. If you want to do this type of thing, you’re better off doing it yourself.

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Get A Piste Of The Action

Whilst it is incredibly exciting that Spring is only a few short weeks away it does, unfortunately, mean the ski season is coming to an end.  We know, we feel it too!


However it isn’t too late to head out and enjoy a few more weeks of adrenalin fuelled fun and, with a few little tweaks, you could make this a little bit more luxurious than your last ski trip.


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Heading out to Aspen is a fantastic idea.  The tail end of the season does mean you might lose a little snow quality as the main bulk of tourists have been going hard on the slopes for a few months now and fresh snow is falling less and less, however it does have the added bonus of meaning there are a few last minute deals to snatch up.  If you are in a position to hightail it out of work with 24 hours notice, you could save yourself a small fortune.  Hurrah!


This little saving might give you just enough to invest in some pretty awesome airport transportation, rolling into the resort in chauffeur driven style without lugging your skis and bags on a shuttle bus or into a hired car.  Also, who needs a hired car on a skiing trip anyway?  


If you have got a great deal on accommodation then you may feel tied to one resort, but the best thing about Aspen is you have so many options and so much access.  If you have been lucky enough to bag a week or two in Snowmass then you are probably not going to want to head off anywhere else.  You have 5547 acres of skiable area, so even though it is renowned as a family resort, there is plenty of space to get away from the crowds and ski your own route.  There is an average of 300 inches of snowfall and it boasts a vertical drop of a whopping 4406 ft.  With some of the best black routes on offer you can test your skills or take a more peaceful approach on one of the novice runs.  


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Travel is essential for keeping us healthy of mind and increasing our acceptance. You learn so much about culture and other people.  Skiing in Aspen is no exception to this rule, there is a gorgeous town with pretty little streets and vibrant colourful buildings.  You will find some great bars and brilliant restaurants to spend your evenings in and get to know the locals, who adore the tourist trade.  If you fancy trying something a little different, and give your ski boots a rest, then head off on a dog sleigh adventure.  Everything is provided, even the food, so all you have to do is turn on and tune out.  Enjoying the incredible scenery with only the sound of galloping paws surrounding you.  
We don’t know what you are waiting for? Get online and hunt down those end of season deals.  This time tomorrow, you could be on the piste!

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Are You Ready For The Ultimate Road Trip Adventure?

We’ve all thought about packing our things up in the car and taking off on an adventure at one stage or another. But while the thought of an impromptu weekend away may sound perfect, an organized trip will almost certainly take things to the next level.


You’ve saved up your money. You’ve taken two weeks off work. And now you’re ready to put the wheels in motion for what could be the trip of a lifetime. What are you waiting for?


Let’s kick this baby into overdrive.

Roads Winding Road Trip Road Trip

Roads Winding Road Trip Road Trip



Preparing Your Transport


Arguably the best thing about taking an epic road trip is that you can marry your love of a great vacation with your love of driving. However, it’s imperative that your vehicle is prepared for the long drives ahead. Not least because you will be entering unfamiliar territories.   


In addition to checking the car’s health, it’s often worth investing in a Sat Nav and a dash cam. If you plan to travel with the whole family, keeping kids occupied with an in-car DVD can have a huge impact too. There’s more to a road trip than driving alone, but this is a crucial element. Get it right, and you’re already halfway to enjoying the perfect vacation.   


Plan, But Leave Room For Flexibility


Your road trip allows you to visit multiple places in a very short space of time. So if you’re going to utilize your time effectively, planning ahead is a crucial element. Otherwise, you could waste valuable time deciding on attractions to visit. Besides, there’s nothing quite as frustrating as missing a great opportunity through poor preparation.   


On the other hand, you never know when you might suddenly see an event that wasn’t promoted. Alternatively, you may get a chance to buy tickets to a big sporting event or music gig. Find the right balance between following a schedule and being spontaneous, and you will not go wrong.




Pre-Book Accommodation


Throughout your journey, there may be times when a quick night stop in the motel will suffice. Likewise, many adventurers love the thought of sleeping under the stars and camping for at least some of the trip. Nevertheless, you will need a sense of comfort.


Just because you are on a road trip, it doesn’t mean you can’t spend a few days in one location. Cabin rentals are a great way to enjoy a short stay in luxury while having a great place to enjoy some family adventure before hitting the road once more. Moreover, a good night’s sleep will work wonders for the driver. If nothing else, having these elements in place will help you stick to the basic itinerary.


Be Prepared For Activities


Whether you’re traveling by car or RV, you should have ample space for packing key items. In addition to clothes and essentials, you should pack footwear designed for treks and other adventures. This one tip will open up a whole world of new adventures.


Specialist equipment for activities like rafting will be provided on site, so that isn’t a problem. As long as you pack torches, spare cell phones, and other key items, you’ll have nothing to fear. Above all else, the confidence gained from being prepared will allow you to seek far more enjoyment too. So strap in, the trip of a lifetime awaits.

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Once in a Lifetime: Some Unique Travel Experiences You Shouldn’t Miss Out On

There are some things that you need to experience first-hand to comprehend how special they are. These are once in a lifetime experiences that you simply can’t afford to miss out on. If you are planning your future travel plans, you should definitely include some of these unique travel experiences. Find out some more information about some of the best below.


Swim in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland


Iceland might not seem like a typical tourist destination, but the island has a surprising amount to offer. It has a few interesting cities, a very unique culture, natural beauty and the Northern Lights. On top of all that, it has the Blue Lagoon. This stunning natural lagoon is open to the public, and you can swim in it whenever you like. Despite the freezing cold surroundings, the water in the lagoon is always warm, and you can make the most of it. It’s a great way to relax and warm up, so don’t miss it. The mineral contents of the water are also said to have its own health benefits, so you have plenty of reasons to seek it out.


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Explore Thailand and Teach There


Not many people know it, but Thailand is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Despite the country being small on the map, around 66 million people live there. The capital is Bangkok, and it attracts tourists from all over the world throughout the year. But if you want to see a different side to the country and leave a positive legacy there, you should teach English to local children. You can volunteer in Thailand and do this whenever you like. It’s something a little different, and it offers a unique way to see the country.


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Walk in Japan’s Bamboo Forests


Japan has all kinds of natural wonders, as well as the artificial man-made metropolis of Tokyo. But of all the natural sites you must see in Japan, the enchanting Bamboo Forests are among the very best. In fact, they’re breathtaking. The bamboo stalks tower over you so high, and the atmosphere is one of a kind. It’s like a normal forest, but at the same time, it’s completely different and unique. It’s the kind of thing that you really do have to experience for yourself if you want to understand it. Head to Kyoto if you want to find them and walk through them at your own pace.


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Hike Machu Picchu


Up high in the Andes Mountains, you’ll find the abandoned 15th-century citadel known as Machu Picchu. It was only discovered in relatively recent times, and seeing a city made 600 years ago is something you can’t do often. It has been untouched and unspoiled, and now tourists head up the mountain to see it for themselves. It’s something that you should definitely do once in your life because there is quite simply nothing else like it on Earth, so it shouldn’t be missed. You can go up there yourself or join a guided tour if you want more structure and guidance.



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Wild Whistler: Your Guide To Canada’s Coolest Ski Resort

Whistler, Vancouver is the largest ski resort in North America and home to some of the most jaw dropping scenery on the planet. This region of British Columbia, Canada played host to the 2010 Winter Olympics, and still continues to attract visitors from all over the globe thanks to the luscious list of extreme sports on offer. Here, you can try skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and tobogganing as well as the chance to experience everything in the chalet style village that nestles in the foothills of the Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains.


Flickr Photo From: Kevin Hale







Flickr Photo From: Darach McDougall


Ski The Run That Suits You

Whistler has an extensive range of runs that suit every level of skier, from the nursery slopes, so-called because they are suitable for beginners or small children, all the way up to diamond black runs which are extremely high, contain dizzying hairpin bends and should only be attempted by very experienced or professional skiers. For beautiful snow, gentle runs and clear signposts head to the Peak Express Chair, from there you can experience some musical themed green and blue runs, including the Burnt Stew Trail and Ode To Joy. These trails are great spots for novices to practice their turns, get the hang of the sport and be around those of a similar level. If you’re no stranger to the slopes more challenging runs are, of course, on offer. In fact, over 55 percent of Whistler’s ski runs are suitable for intermediate skiers including the picturesque Arthur’s Choice and Outer Limits.


Flickr Photo From: heschong

Stay In Style At The Four Seasons

There’s a whole range of amazing hotels, lodges, B&B’s and more packed into this quaint yet lively ski town. Before you arrive don’t forget to arrange your Electronic Travel Authorisation, it only costs $7 CAD and you can see more info at https://official-canada-eta.com. All visa-exempt foreign nationals must show this documentation on entry into Canada. If it’s your first ski season in Whistler or you’re celebrating something extra special, why not stay at a luxury, 273 room lodge complete with en-suite rooms, balconies and stunning mountain views? The resort is meters from the slopes and has an on-site spa, three hot tubs, and a multitude of restaurants. Elsewhere, there are cafes, bars and pubs aplenty where you can grab a quick snack before checking out the day’s action or the perfect venue for an après-ski hot chocolate after a great day on the slopes.


Flickr Photo From: Atsushi Kase

Ride The Peak To Peak Gondola

This incredible piece of machinery is also the longest and highest ski lift in the world and hangs suspended for 4.4 kilometres between the Whistler and Blackcomb mountain ranges. During the winter the gondola gives you double the fun when it comes to skiing, and in the summer you can enjoy of 50 kilometres of hiking, mountain biking and nature trails. The gondola also offers guests the chance to see the landscape from above, breathe in fresh alpine air and witness the gorgeous scenery in front of you. Look out for Hoary Marmots, these cute creatures are small ground squirrels that make their burrows near the tree line and emit a series of high-pitched whistles if they see any danger.

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1 Country, 3 Provinces, 5 Experiences



If you’re thinking of places that you might like to visit during your vacation time in 2017, here’s one to add to the lineup: Canada. Whether you’ve been or not, Canada is the perfect place to get a wide range of travel experiences ticked off of your list.

You may have a few locations in the US on your travel bucket list, but you can get to them next. First, you’ll want to visit the provinces Quebec, New Brunswick or Ontario in Canada for five very different reasons. From the food to the culture, sights and views, this country does not disappoint.

Feel The History

One of the best things about traveling can be seeing the actual country itself. When you visit somewhere new, you tend to take it all in. You want to learn all about it, understand the culture and see the history. When you go to Canada, Quebec City is an incredible place to visit for exactly that reason. Old Quebec is a historic town. You can get a great feel of the country’s history and culture all in one place. So if history is what you’re looking for, you’ll get dose after dose of it here.

Go Wild

Alongside the culture, Canada also has some pretty great wildlife and nature to keep an eye out for. If you’re heading to the country in 2017, why not put New Brunswick on your to see list. Say you’re staying at Amsterdam Inn & Suites, you can head to the coast and try to spot yourself a whale. Whale watching is popular in this province and it’s highly likely that you’ll catch a good look. So if you do add this to your list, you might want to pop a camera on it too!

Be Astounded

With Canada on your list, this one ought to be too. No matter what your preference are when you travel, your taste or your personality, if you’re in Canada (or New York state), you have to head to Niagara Falls. If you’re staying in Ontario or close by and planning on traveling, make sure Niagara Falls is at the top of your to-see list. This natural beauty will completely amaze you and probably top your experiences for the trip.

Take It All In

If you’re in Quebec, there’s a definite must-see for anyone that loved culture, art, history, architecture or anything breathtaking. The Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal is an incredible sight. As its name suggests, it’s a basilica, but it an absolute beauty at that. If you’re planning on passing by Montreal or even staying there, the Notre Dame Basilica has to take up at least one of your days.

See The Culture

If culture is what you’re looking for, then you probably want to add a range of museums or galleries to your hit list. While in Canada, make sure you either stay in or visit Ontario. The Royal Ontario Museum is exactly what you’re looking for. Full of great lines ups for the exhibitions and galleries, you can even team up your visit with a feature that appeals to you.

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America’s Finest Cities: 3 Fantastic Places To Live In The U.S.

If you’re thinking of moving away soon, then you should consider all your options. Of course, some people move to where they find a job or educational opportunity. But if you’re just looking for a change of scene, you should move to the best location possible.

The States are full of unique and attractive places to live. Property prices can be high in some of these areas, but it’s worth it for the scenery and local attractions. Whether you’re looking for a place to retire to, or just want the nicest house possible, here are some of the best places to live.

San Diego, California


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San Diego is one of California’s finest cities. It’s rife with employment opportunities – the tech, healthcare, and military industries in particular. It’s also ideal for nature lovers, with many mountains and regional parks nearby.

If you want warm weather all year round, excellent beaches, and affordable living, then you should discover San Diego and what it has to offer. Fancy areas of California like Orange County and Los Angeles may get more recognition, but San Diego gives you more bang for your buck.

It’s a fantastic place to raise children, with schools and parks everywhere. It’s also a wonderful place for young couples and bachelors, with tons of entertaining things to do and an excellent quality of life.

Columbus, Ohio


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Those looking for somewhere with cheap costs of living and a strong cultural identity need look no further than Columbus. The capital of Ohio is the fifteenth most populated city in America. Although it continues to grow, it still has one of the lowest rental prices in the United States.

Columbus has also received praise for being one of America’s smartest cities. A lot of this can be attributed to the popular Ohio State University- one of America’s largest schools. It also has a low unemployment rate, with plenty of opportunities in various fields.

Sports fans will love Columbus- people love to root for the Buckeyes. It’s also excellent for arts, culture, and cuisine, making it a fantastic place to live. It may not get the fanfare of some other big cities, but it’s well worth considering.

Seattle, Washington


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Seattle is a fast-growing and modern city with a unique atmosphere. It’s becoming a valuable area for the tech industry, with many major companies like Apple and Google setting up offices there. It’s also rife with startups, making it ideal for anyone interested in running a small business.

In fact, the area is so sought-after that rental prices are growing faster than any other city in the US. The financial implications might put off young people- but it’s a great place to invest in a house and raise a family.

It’s great for culture. There are a ton of music venues- after all, bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam were born here. It’s also surrounded by nature, making it a prime spot for outdoors lovers. Those who like to travel will enjoy living here. It’s just below the Canadian border, so visiting Vancouver is a breeze. It’s not too far from California or Nevada either, so there are some great vacation opportunities.

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