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Casey

Casey

DestinationsMiddle EastTravel

9 Things to do in Tel Aviv Israel

Tel Aviv Israel Sightseeing

Travel Guide To Tel Aviv, Israel

There is a plethora of things to do in Tel Aviv, from relaxing by the Mediterranean, seeing some of the rich history the city has to offer, and experiencing some amazing night life! Tel Aviv overall is a great place to start any adventure in Israel as it has a little taste of everything for anyone’s interests. Personally, I wasn’t too much for the nightlife but did enjoy an awesome escape room! Most of my time there was more focused on sightseeing and getting to see some of the historical sites in the city. Considering Israel has been a center point for many of the world’s greatest historical moments, it seemed silly to not see and touch a piece of that antiquity.

TIP: If this is your first time in Tel Aviv, try to brush up on your customs for the area and especially if you’re visiting religious sites.

We’ll get to that in a bit though, first let’s get started with some nice places to relax and take it easy in Tel Aviv.

Relaxing in Tel Aviv

Relaxing in Tel Aviv

Beaches in Tel Aviv

There are quite a few beaches to visit in Tel Aviv, but all are obviously connected as there is only one side of Tel Aviv that connects to the coast. So, the Tel Aviv beach will have multiple “sections” as you go down the beach and they will have separate names. The area we went to was between Bograshov Beach and Jerusalem Beach. Going early mornings and during the weekdays was the best times for low traffic and true relaxing! Like most beaches around the world, they also have numerous volleyball nets setup along the beach and other activities if you’re into “actively” relaxing. If you want more in depth information on the beaches of Tel Aviv, I recommend reading through this to get the best feel for what is there and when to go.

Tel Aviv Beach Map

Tel Aviv Spa!

If you’re really looking for some nice relaxation, then a spa can get rid of a lot of tension. The Shizen Hotel is one of the best in Tel Aviv with plenty to offer. They have packages for the ladies, couples, and even ones specifically for men! If you’re looking for something in particular, the variety offered goes further than that, including deep tissue, aromatherapy, and even pregnant massages.

Netanya, Israel

Netanya is just North of Tel Aviv and is easily one of the most beautiful cities in Israel. The city is decorated in rich green scenery and fountains, while having very relaxing beaches. In a sense, it’s similar to spending a day at a Tel Aviv beach, but there is much more to see inland, and the entire area is much more picturesque.

Tel Aviv Sightseeing & Tourism

Tel Aviv Israel Sightseeing

Museum of Art, Israel

I’m not sure about you, but I’m a huge museum fan and love to learn about other cultures! The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is a perfect place to do just that, with numerous collections and exhibitions happening all the time. While there is plenty to see on the topic of Israeli Art, there are also collections from the Old Masters and in all different forms of media.

Lod, Israel

Slightly south of Tel Aviv is the small city of Lod. A large attraction of the city is the Church of St George due to its history and role it’s played. Most of the attractions in Lod will be of some religious significance (big surprise as you’re in Israel), but even if you’re not religious, the sites are still powerful, and you can feel the history.

Old Jaffa!

Jaffa is a place that can’t be missed for tourists. Having the oldest seaport in the world and a former stop for people making a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, Jaffa has many interesting stories to tell. More specifically, we’re looking at the Old City, where the cobblestone streets lead to many archaeological sites and underground churches. Just being in the city feels like you’ve been teleported back in time.

Tel Aviv Nightlife & Fun

Tel Aviv Nightlife

Tel Aviv isn’t just a place to learn about history or spend time relaxing on a beach, it also has a vibrant nightlife and plenty of fun things to do. Also, if you’re looking to find a decent club or bar, expect them to be fairly dead until midnight, as most Israeli’s start the party later and continue until morning.

Rothschild 12

If you’re looking for a chill but still active night scene, the Rothschild 12 is a great place to start your evening. During the day it’s a peaceful café until nighttime when it turns into a bar to start your crawl. Enjoy a drink on their terrace or catch a live band playing around back!

The Block

Looking for a dancing scene and somewhere with more action? The Block is an exciting dance club with something always happening. From my experience, most of the music I’ve come across being played there is house, dance, EDM, and music along those genres. So, if you’re into bumpin’ music and great vibes, definitely try it out!

Questomania

I always recommend escape rooms as they are one of my favorite things to do in a new city with friends (plus I love puzzles). Questomania is a short walk from Rothschild Boulevard if you decided to grab a drink from the area first. They offer 5 separate rooms and are English friendly!

What Else?

There’s so much to do in Tel Aviv finding something to do can be overwhelming. Hopefully the options above helped and at least led you in the right direction. If you still want more ideas, I recommend checking out Culture Trips list!

 

 

DestinationsMiddle EastTravel

BEST Places to Visit in Jordan – 2020 TRAVEL GUIDE

Wadi Rum Jordan

Jordan is a beautiful country with so much history that it can be overwhelming to decide what to see. I’ve narrowed it down to my top 5 recommendations that should fit any travelers’ preferences. Partially to make it easier to see only the best sites, and because usually people don’t have loads of time to travel to every destination on those “top 15” lists. So, the top 5 are…

1. Petra

2. Wadi Rum

3. Dead Sea

4. Aqaba

5. Amman

These sites encompass much of the exciting destinations you could go to in Jordan and are also the most popular. While popularity means more tourists will be there, I notice it also makes it feel a little safer as there are plenty of people around. So overall, these sites are full of history, there’s tons of navigating information on them, and they are probably some of the safest places to visit.

Also, be sure to read the end of the article if you’re curious about miscellaneous travel information to Jordan, such as obtaining visa’s and the best time to travel there!

On to the list!

Petra, Jordan

What is Petra?

Believed to have been inhabited as early as 9,000 BC, Petra is near the cradle of civilization and holds plenty of history from that period. However, the site of Petra itself was built around the 4th century BC as the capital of the Nabatean civilization. The Nabateans were skilled craftsman and were well situated along trade routes which allowed them to prosper so well, despite being in the middle of nowhere.

All this good fortune mixed with talented sculptors, led to it being a must-see destination today for it’s awe-inspiring structures and rich architecture.

Things to see in Petra, Jordan

When most people think of Petra, they picture Al-Khazned. Al-Khaxned is the treasury that stands famously with unique pillars and very intricate designs. It’s also the “temple” that Indian Jones enters in the The Last Crusade, despite the inside not really looking like that.

Map of Petra

But Al-Khazned isn’t the only thing to see at Petra. In fact, Petra is an all-day excursion and there is so much to see that you may be too exhausted to experience it all if you don’t prepare. To show just how many sites there are, see the map below for the sites in Petra. It was after all an entire city, so of course there are plenty of things to see such as the A’Deir, the Nabatean Theatre, and even walking the Siq is an amazing experience.

What does it cost?

A one-day ticket into Petra costs 50 JD which is roughly $70. This also depends on if you purchase the Jordan Pass, which is sold by Jordan’s Ministry of Tourism and allows access to most sites and saves money on purchasing a visa. I’ll mention that in the extra info at the end of this post.

Wadi Rum, Jordan

Wadi Rum

What is Wadi Rum?

Wadi Rum is the largest valley in Jordan and translated means “Valley of Sand”, not surprising as it’s a desert. It’s also the filming location for the movie The Martian and it’s easy to see why they chose it when you get there. It has a very foreign and an out of this world look to it that is just amazing!

Things to see in Wadi Rum

We started our trip glamping at a small camp in the desert. The camp in itself was a site to see and a wonderful experience.

Aside from just having a nice place to stay, there are also plenty of famous sites around the wadi that are great places to see. We went to Khazali Canyon and climbed through the rock scrambles, walked across the Burdah Rock Bridge, and stopped by Lawrence’s House! Also make sure you find your way to any small rock plateau to watch the sunset. A Wadi Rum sunset is something that I’ve only seen mentioned a few times, but it’s such an amazing site.

What does it cost?

So, lodging is obviously a cost of staying in Wadi Rum but that is something that should be arranged beforehand. As far as costs to get into the Wadi Rum protected area, it’s 5 JD for international visitors and free for children under 12.

Exploring the Dead Sea

Dead Sea Jordan

What is the Dead Sea?

The Dead Sea is a salt lake that lies on the border of Jordan and Israel. The Dead Sea has a salinity of roughly 34%, making it impossible for plants and animals to live near it, hence its name. While the formation is still debated, it may have once been a part of the Red Sea until it was separated by a land mass in between.

Reasons to go

The Dead Sea is a unique destination and there’s no place like it. Swimming in the salt lake is essentially just floating around as it’s near impossible to sink.

The sea is also frequented because of its positive health effects on human skin and is used as a cleanser. If you wanted to take some home with you don’t worry, there are multiple vendors around the sea that sell package sand/mud that comes from it.

What does it cost?

Going to the Dead Sea is free like most beaches you’ll find. However, there are private areas around it that you may have to pay for access. But, if you’re looking for a free spot, they do exist and are public property.

Visiting Aqaba Jordan

What is Aqaba?

The only coastal city in Jordan, Aqaba is a popular vacation destination not just for tourists but other Jordanians as well. Even more convenient is that it’s placed near Petra and Wadi Rum, making it a great place to tack onto your trip if you’re visiting the other two.

Things to do in Aqaba

Aqaba is a great place to just relax and enjoy the scenery of the Red Sea. So, if you’re looking for a place to relax and spend some time not walking, hiking, or exploring, then sit by a beach as Aqaba has some great spots.

With such great beaches, Aqaba is also a great place to go snorkeling or diving. There are plenty of options for underwater excursions in the region. If you’re looking more for historical sites, there is the Mamluk castle and the archaeological museum as well.

Amman Jordan

Amman Jordan

What is Amman?

Amman is Jordan’s capital city that is situated in the northern part of the country. It has been occupied since 7,000 BC and because of that has plenty of history to offer in the architecture and outside of the city.

Things to do in Amman

If you’re a history buff, Jebel al-Qala’a is a must-see experience. There is also a plethora of restaurants such as Kan Zaman, Hashem, or the Jabri restaurant. Making it a great place to take in some historical sites, learn of Jordanian culture, and taste delectable Arab cuisine.

Extra Information on Jordan Travel

Visa Information For Jordan Travel

Jordan does require a visa to visit the country and the costs can be dependent on what you plan to do. A single entry visa will cost 40 JD if you only plan on getting a visa to get into the country. However, the Jordan Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities offers a “Jordan Pass” that gives access to many historical sites throughout Jordan and if you purchase the Jordan Pass, the cost of your visa is included in the pass. This is a perfect offer if you plan on visiting places like Petra or other historical sites while in Jordan and the costs of the Jordan Pass can be found here for you to compare.

It’s also recommended to get your visa stamped in your passport before entering the country. While they do offer visa’s on entry to Jordan (except the bridge crossing from Eilat, Israel), it’s better to get them in advance.

What is the Jordan Currency?

The currency for Jordan is the Jordanian Dinar. It’s more valuable than USD so don’t get worried when you get fewer JD for your USD. I also recommend getting plenty in advance and plan for the activities you have in mind.

Language

The official language of Jordan is Arabic. Thankfully, many of the people we came across could speak decent English, but it helps tremendously to learn the local customs and common phrases in Arabic.

Overall

I hope your trip to Jordan is as exciting and enjoyable as ours was, it was an experience I’ll never forget. If you have any questions or comments please leave them below!

DestinationsTravelUnited States

Where to Stay in Yosemite National Park – 2020

Where to Stay in Yosemite

Yosemite National Park

Yosemite is a gorgeous place to see and should be experienced at least once in a lifetime! Especially if you’re an outdoors person or love hiking. There’s nothing better than getting a few blisters from a long day of hiking. Ok, the blisters part isn’t fun… but hopefully you have good boots and that’s not a problem.

Regardless of blisters or not, after a day at Yosemite and all the outdoor adventure, it’s nice to have a comfy place to lay down and relax. That’s what this article is for! I’ll help you find the best lodging for you and give you and introduction to what’s accommodations are available in Yosemite Valley.

To start, what kind of lodging are you looking for? Luxury hotel? Budget Airbnb? Maybe a campsite? Lodging depends on what you prefer and thankfully Yosemite has plenty of diverse options on where to stay.

Hotels in Yosemite

Mammoth Mountain Inn

Mammoth Mountain Inn

This is a great option if you’re on a budget but can still afford a decent place. They have lower priced rooms and all the amenities are still there. Depending on your reason for being in Yosemite, Mammoth Mountain Inn also offers packages for weddings and events. It’s also conveniently located near a ski and snowboard area.

Tenaya Lodge Yosemite

Tenaya Lodge

A slightly more pricey option, the Tenaya Lodge is a beautiful place to stay if you can afford it. It’s also a good place if you’re looking for a one stop shop for exploring Yosemite, as they also offer tour packages and other outdoor activities!

AirBnb’s in Yosemite

There are TONS of options for AirBnb places in Yosemite, so I won’t go into any specific here. I just want to point out that the average seems to hover around $230/night for houses or cabin type lodging. The first hotel mentioned earlier is cheaper so if you’re trying to save money I recommend that and not going with AirBnb.

Cabin Rentals in Yosemite

Cabin Rentals in Yosemite National Park

Evergreen Lodge

A slightly more costly option, the Evergreen Lodge has a very comfortable setting and wonderful amenities. There are also plenty of cabins to rent so it should be easy to find an open time.

Evergreen Lodge is really the main place where there are a collection of cabins to rent. There are still more options than the one provided, so if you’re deadest on a cabin but want more options, you’ll need to use search engines for finding them such as Glamping Hub or going to Yosemites website.

Camping in Yosemite

Camping in Yosemite

Yosemite has a total of 13 possible campsites to choose from, these include tent camping and RV’s. Also depending on where you want to be in the valley, there are campsites north of the valley, south, and right in the valley.

If you want to make a reservation, the contact information and instructions are provided here. If you want to see the individual campgrounds in the valley, they’re listed here .

Recap

There are plenty of options for lodging in Yosemite for all budgets and preferences. Just make sure you make reservations in advance for whatever your preference and also be aware of the time of the year you’re going and pack accordingly! If you’re looking for hikes to do while you’re out there, check my list of Yosemites best hikes here!

DestinationsEuropeTravel

[ITINERARY] – AMAZING Things to do in Athens Greece

Parthenon Athens Greece

There are tons of things to do in Athens Greece! And Linn and I took advantage of as many of them as possible. Don’t stay too long though, we ended up spending more time in Athens even though we had seen everything we wanted to see, much faster than expected. Below is a nice list of our trip, summarizing the main points. If you’re just interested in things to do and sites to see, then feel free to skip the “Arriving to Athens” and “Lodging and AirBnb” sections.

Things To Do In Athens Greece:

  1. Arriving to Athens
  2. Lodging and AirBnb
  3. Local Transportation
  4. Sites (Things to do)
    1. Map of all sites
    2. Theater of Dionysus
    3. Acropolis and Parthenon
    4. Ancient Agora
    5. Temple of Zeus
    6. National Garden
    7. Panathenaic Stadium
    8. Mount Lycabettus
    9. Hadrians Library

Arriving to Athens

Getting to Athens Greece is really a matter of preference. It’s not a secluded city that is hard to reach, so there are plenty of options to choose from based on your preferences. We personally try to settle for something budget friendly, but not so inexpensive that it takes us days to get there. That perfect in between for us was to fly into the Athens International Airport or “Eleftherios Venizelos”. As with most flights from anywhere, try to book early with at least one to two months in advance.

After flying in, we had some trouble getting around the airport since there was construction and the detours weren’t the easiest to navigate. Thankfully, we eventually reached the taxi area and took a taxi to our Airbnb as it was the fastest. Like most foreign countries, there may be a language barrier (if you’re American like us) between you and the driver, so it’s best to be prepared with the address and map to show the driver.

Also! Don’t fret too much about how they drive in Athens. Yes, they fit 4 cars into 2 lane roads, but it seems to work for them. Personally, I was on the edge of my seat, but we never had any issues with any taxi drivers.

Lodging and Airbnb

Once you get to Athens, it’s obviously best to have a place to stay. Linn and I have pretty much fully converted to staying at Airbnb’s instead of hotels. We’ve found you have a much wider range of options regarding our budget, proximity to the sites we want to see, and proximity to cheaper public transportation. We managed to find a perfect place that wasn’t exactly city center but did overlook the city, and it was right up the street from the local tram station. That was perfect as we’ve come to notice that trains and tramways are the cheapest option for local travel.

The view from our AirBnb.

View From Airbnb Athens Greece

That’s my opinion on lodging, as there are options for hotels, they were a bit too pricey considering we were only going to be in them to sleep. But it’s all a matter of preference and if you’d prefer a hotel closer to syntagma square, then there are a few nearby.

Local Transportation

Options for transportation in Athens are similar to most places, there are taxis, ubers, metro, trams, and buses. While the buses did reach a few places we wanted to see, the trams usually got us there with only an extra 5 minutes of walking. So it was our preferred way to get around the city as we were able to get week long tickets (ahead of time online that were very affordable and all major sites are near a station.

If there are specific sites that you want to go that are a bit too far for your walking distance, the taxis are easy to call and aren’t expensive for short rides.

 

Things To Do

Now we get to the meat of the trip, the reasons we went. I’ll show a map below of all the sites we visited on where they are in relation to each other. You’ll notice that they are all close in proximity and that’s why we were able to see so much and had days to spare. The places are also listed in chronological order that we visited them but we didn’t see them in this order for any particular reason, so feel free to explore in what every order you prefer.

Things to do in Athens Greece

Map Legend:

Dark blue – Ancient Agora

Pink – Hadrians Library

Orange – Acropolis, Parthenon, and Theater of Dionysus

Green – Mount Lycabettus

Light Blue – National Garden

Red – Temple of Zeus

Yellow – Panathenaic Stadium

White – Syntagma Square

Map of Athens Greece

1. Theater of Dionysus

Theater of Dionysus

This was a part of the Acropolis, so we were able to see it before walking up the acropolis to the Parthenon. I highly recommend booking your tickets in advance, as we didn’t and were stuck waiting in a long line on a hot day for roughly an hour! The theater itself is a short walk around as are the grounds around it. It’s a nice place to snap a few shots and prepare for the short trek up the hill.

2. Acropolis and Parthenon

Acropolis and Parthenon

Parthenon Athens Greece

The main site of Athens, the central point with so much history and such a beautiful site! The Parthenon was a perfect start to our trip in Athens as we’re serious buff’s when it comes to historical sites and this is one of the best. Sadly it was a bit cloudy when we went, but that didn’t stop us from taking it all in and enjoying a 2,400 year old architectural relic! It was also pretty crowded even for what was supposed to be the low time, but thankfully there is plenty of room on top of the Acropolis, so it wasn’t cramped while we were up there.

There are also plenty of smaller sites scattered around the Parthenon with their own rich history and placards oh what their significance is.

3. Ancient Agora of Athens

Ancient Agora of Athens

Ancient Agora Greece

More Ancient Agora

The agora was the gathering place in Athens and later became a commercial place (marketplace basically). It’s also very well preserved so you get a much better sense of the architecture. On top of that, it was very spacious and much less crowded, we walked around the agora and barely ran into anyone and weren’t rushed at all while we were trying to take photos.

Also, there was a small museum and rest area located in the Agora. It was a large building with pillars lining the front and inside containing relics from multiple time periods.

4. Temple of Zeus

Temple of Zeus Athens Greece

Temple of Olympian Zeus

The temple of zeus was a mix of astonishment and slight disappointment. Looking back I would still go see it and still highly recommend it, but it’s a little upsetting how much is left. I can’t complain as it’s been standing for over 2,000 years, but quite a few pillars are missing as it has taken a beating over that time.

That being said, there are still smaller ruins around the site and even the 10 or so pillars of the main structure are still standing and still have such amazing craftsmanship.

INTERMISSION:

I want to stop and take a second to mention that after all of the sites I’ve listed so far, it only took about 2 days to visit them (including lunch breaks and taking it slow). These historical sites in Athens are very close together, which makes sense as 2,000 years ago people didn’t really have cars to “get to the other side of town”, so it helped making the main points close together. I just wanted to point that out though so you know that to visit all of the sites in here will only take 4-5 days MAX.

 

5. National Garden

National Garden Athens Greece

Athens National Garden

We decided to visit the national garden in Athens as a spur of the moment thing. It actually wasn’t on our list on the way there but I’m glad we decided to go. It wasn’t as extravagant as the Acropolis or Ancient Agora, but we’re both avid lovers of hiking and nature walks so it was a nice break and there was no stress in getting around.

6. Panathenaic Stadium

Panathenaic Stadium Athens Greece

Athens Greece Olympic Stadium

This was a happy accident we stumbled on. We were actually just walking around outside the national garden and saw a large stadium. We kind of decided to check it out and see what it was. As we got closer it got bigger, and not only was it a stadium, but we got a quick intro to its rich history and how it once hosted the Olympic games.

I think one of the best parts was that you were allowed to walk around the track, in the stands, and even go underground where the athletes were (which was now converted into a small museum of sorts).

7. Mount Lycabettus

Mount Lycabettus

This was another spur of the moment decision. We had a day left in Athens with no plans so we decided to go for a hike to get a nice view of the city from a different angle. Honestly it was a great hike and I loved the view, but if you’re not into hiking then this isn’t something that you have to see.

8. Hadrians Library

Hadrians Library Greece

Hadrians Library Athens

This was our last destination but it was interesting to walk through and experience. I’d recommend doing this one during your Acropolis trip as it’s not too far from there. It’s also a quick visit with some nice history and would be a great site to see to end a day.

Athens Overall

Athens was a phenomenal trip! The only thing I think we could’ve improved about our trip is if it wasn’t as long. Not because Athens wasn’t a great city, but because we were still going to two other places and it would’ve been better to have more time in those places since we were able to see everything in Athens in the first few days.

Overall though, I highly recommend you visit Athens at least once and especially if you’re into rich historical sites!

Things to do in Athens Greece

TravelTravel Tips

WHAT IS GLAMPING AND HOW DO I DO IT?

Guide to Glamping

What is Glamping?

So, exactly what is glamping? Glamping is simply the combination of camping and glamour. Sounds like a weird word, but it’s a simple concept of camping but in a more luxurious manner. So if you’re interested in camping and being outdoors but don’t want to go through the hassle of getting incredibly dirty and leaves in all your stuff, then maybe try glamping?

How does Glamping work?

It’s simple and easy to start, you find a campsite or campground that offers higher end services but still allows you to experience the beauty of nature. There are plenty of campsites around the world and most of the aspects of your trip can be taken care of by a single facility.

There are a variety of places and things you can do while glamping that will vary depending on what campsite you go to. It’s like any other travel, the possibilities and adventures depend on where you go and what you’re interested in.

How to go Glamping

Where to start?

There are numerous places to search for glamping camp sites. My personal recommendation is to go onto glamping.com as you’re able to find campsites based off of location and other options.

Additionally pack for the climate you intend to visit. That’s pretty much it. It’s like a normal camping trip but without a lot of the stress. Plenty of the location specific information can be learned from contacting a representative at the place you intend to go. That being said, it doesn’t hurt to do personal research either.

Happy glamping!

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Glamping Tips

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DestinationsTravelUnited States

Best Hikes in Yosemite National Park [HIKING GUIDE]

Half Dome Yosemite

Half Dome Yosemite

Yosemite is a beautiful outdoors travel destination for any hiker, camper, or anyone who just loves the outdoors. That’s why I wanted to create a guide for the best hikes in Yosemite and make it easier for you to find a great adventure that fits your abilities.

There are quite a few ways to rank the trails in Yosemite but most people I talk to about hiking are concerned with the difficulty. Many trails have great scenery and give awesome views of nature, but it’s a bit of a deal breaker if the trail will have you crawling half way through. In addition, we’re going to focus on the Yosemite Valley area for trails.

So here are the best hikes in Yosemite ranked by difficulty!

Mirror Lake Trail

Best Hikes in Yosemite

Distance: 2.3 (3.2km) miles round trip to lake and back. 5 (8km) miles if you go around the lake

Elevation Gain: 100 feet

Difficulty: Easy

Time: 1 hour round trip; 2-3 hours if you loop around the lake.

This is a simple trail that takes you to a wonderful view of the lake. It has great foliage and atmosphere! It’s not difficult and has very low elevation gain as well. Getting to the trailhead is also simple as you can take the valley shuttle service and the trailhead for Mirror Lake starts at stop #17.

Conveniently, this trail is also open year round as it’s a fairly simple trail and is safe as long as you don’t wander off trail.

Below is a view of the trail and notice that reaching mirror lake doesn’t require you to hike the entire trail.

Mirror Lake Map

Sentinel/Cooks Meadow Loop

Cooks Meadow Loop Yosemite

Distance: 1 (1.6km) miles round trip

Elevation Gain: None, trail is flat

Difficulty: Easy

Time: 30 minutes

This is a very easy trail that offers great views of the valley and some of Yosemites notable landmarks. Getting there is similar to Mirror Lake as it can be accessed by the shuttle that runs through Yosemite Valley. Simply take the shuttle to stop 5 or 9 and you’ll find yourself at the trailhead!

Overall this trail is fairly easy to manage and is open year round (may be snow covered in the winter though) and is welcoming to pets, bicycles, and strollers.

Sentinel Meadow Loop Map

Lower Yosemite Falls

Lower Yosemite Falls

Distance: 1 (1.6km) miles round trip

Elevation Gain: About 15ft

Difficulty: Easy

Time: 30 minutes

This hike is more of a scenic walk aimed at viewing the awesome 320 foot waterfall that is awe inspiring and a beautiful roaring monster in the spring.

The trail can be accessed by walking from the visitor center, or to save energy, you can reach it by taking the shuttle to stop 6 and getting off there. It’s recommended to walk the trail clockwise so you can get the best views as you hike and not have to turn around.

The Lower Yosemite Falls trail is also open year round but it’s definitely better to see in the spring and early summer when all the ice and snow melts.

Lower Yosemite Falls Map

Columbia Rock

Columbia Rock Yosemite

Distance: 1.3 miles round trip

Elevation Gain: 950ft

Difficulty: Moderate

Time: 1.5 – 2.5 hours

Now we get into the meat of hiking with a slightly more challenging hike. Columbia Rock isn’t the hardest of hikes but it is in the middle of our list concerning difficulty. That being said, there is a risk/reward take away. The hike is more difficult than the previous but the views are that much more rewarding.

The trailhead is located at the Sunnyside campground and can be reached by taking the valley shuttle to stop 7 and taking a short quarter mile hike to the trailhead.

For more information, check out this guide!

Colmbuia Rock Map

The Mist Trail

Mist Trail Yosemite

Distance: 3 (4.8km) miles round trip

Elevation Gain: 1,000ft

Difficulty: Moderate

Time: 12 – 5 hours (depends on how far you hike)

Moving along, we’re getting to the better known trails in Yosemite. They’re more widely known since most of those beautiful pictures you see of Yosemite are taken on these trails. The views you get to experience the higher you hike are phenomenal! But, with more time on a trail, comes more time needed for preparation. Make sure you’re fit enough for a 5 hours hike and able to carry necessary water to finish.

To start, you can get to the trailhead at Happle Isles near shuttle stop 16. There is a little bit more to it obviously so I’ll leave it to this guide to better explain the journey and a trail map below!

Mist Trail Map

4 Mile Trail

4 Mile Trail Yosemite

Distance: 4.8 (7.7km) to Glacier Point. 9.6 mi round trip

Elevation Gain: 3,200ft

Difficulty: Very Difficult

Time: 3 – 4 hours one way; 6 – 8 hours round trip

If you’re well acquainted to difficult hikes and aren’t new to outdoors trekking, I highly recommend this trail. It combines quite a few of Yosemites best scenic areas all on one trail. By the time you reach the top, you’ll have an amazing view of Yosemite Falls, Sentinel Dome, El Capitan, and Half Dome.

The trail starts at the base of Sentinel Rock and even more conveniently, if the hike wore you out and you don’t want to get noodle legs and hurt your knees going down, then there’s a shuttle that can take you back down!

There is a bit of information on this trail so please check out this resource for more information and see the trail map below!

4 Mile Trail Map

Half Dome

Half Dome Yosemite

Distance: 17 miles

Elevation Gain: 8,842ft

Difficulty: Very Difficult

Time: 10 – 14 hours

Half Dome is one of the most iconic sites in Yosemite National Park. Thankfully you don’t have to take the same way up Alex Honnold would and there’s a trail that you can reserve a spot on that is strenuous, but worth the hike. It also makes a lot of Yosemite Valley visible and offers some of the best scenic views in the park.

For more information, check out the information here to not just learn more about the trail, but also find out how to get a permit.

Half Dome Trail Map

TIPS FOR HIKING IN YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK

  • The best times to visit are spring and early summer, especially if you’re looking to see the waterfalls.
  • Come prepared, even short hikes can still take time and you should always have proper hiking gear, food, water, and a way to contact for help in worse case scenarios.
  • Try to avoid visiting on weekends and holidays. The park can become crowded quickly and going during the low times will alleviate the stress of too many people.
  • Carry a small bag for trash with you! Many people comment on “taking care of our parks in America”, but honestly, take care of everywhere! Don’t leave trash in the wild and never leave with less than you came with.
  • Always research possible wildlife and how to handle it. This article can’t cover all the information to staying safe and you should consult a park ranger or wildlife expert to make sure you’re prepared.

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InspirationTravelTravel Tips

75 BEST TRAVEL AND WANDERLUST QUOTES

Wanderlust Quotes

Looking for inspirational travel quotes? Sometimes it’s nice to renew your interests and love for traveling. Hopefully these travel quotes will give you that motivation and keep your spirit for travel ignited. If you have more poignant travel quotes you want to share, please leave them in the comments below!

Best Travel Quotes!

 1. Man cannot discover new oceans unless he is willing to lose sight of the shore. – Andre Gide

Travel Quotes

 2. “There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign” – Robert Louis Stevenson

 3. “Traveling’s not something you’re good at. It’s something you do. Like Breathing.” – Gayle Foreman

 4. “The world makes way for the man who knows where he is going.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

 5. Remember that happiness is a way of travel – not a destination. – Roy M. Goodman

Wanderlust Quotes

 6. “A person susceptible to “wanderlust” is not so much addicted to movement as committed to transformation.”  – Pico Iyer

 7. “If we were meant to stay in one place, we’d have roots instead of feet” – Rachel Wolchin

 8. “Travel doesn’t become adventure until you leave yourself behind” – Marty Rubin

 9. Wanderlust: a strong desire for or impulse to wander or travel and explore the world.

Traveling Quotes

 10. “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes” – Marcel Proust. T

 11.“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”

 12. “Your imagination is your preview of life’s coming attractions.”

 13. “We travel for romance, we travel for architecture, and we travel to be lost.” – Ray Bradbury

 14. Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain. – Jack Kerouac

Wandering Quotes

 15. “My favorite thing is to go where I’ve never been.”

 16. “I’m shaking the dust of this crummy little town off my feet and I’m gonna see the world.”

 17. “What you’ve done becomes the judge of what you’re going to do — especially in other people’s minds. When you’re traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.” – William Least Heat Moon

 18. “People don’t take trips, trips take people.” – John Steinbeck

 19. “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” – Susan Sontag g

 20. Blessed are the curious, for they shall have adventures. – Lovelle Drachman 

Adventure Quotes

 21. “Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

 22. “To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world” – Freya Stark

 23. “Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends” – Maya Angelou g

 24. “Don’t count the days. Make the days count.”

 25. It feels good to be lost in the right direction. 

Travel Quote

 26. “The pleasure we derive from journeys is perhaps dependent more on the mindset with which we travel than on the destination we travel to” – Alain de Botton

 27. “Collect moments. Not things.”

 28. “A journey is best measured in friends rather than miles.” – Tim Cahill

 29. “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

 30. I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to and people I’ve never met. – John Green

Quotes on Travel

 32. “We wander for distraction but we travel for fulfillment” – Hilaire Belloc

 33. “The gladdest moments, me thinks, is a departure into unknown lands.”

 34. “To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries” – Aldous Huxley

 35. “Travel is never a matter of money but of courage.” – Paulo Coelho

 36. “Two roads diverged in a wood and I – I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference” – Robert Frost

37. Traveling – It leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. – Ian Battuta

Travel Sayings

 38. “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”

 39. “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”

 40. “Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” – Terry Pratchett

 41. “The best dreams happen when you’re awake.”

 42. Jobs fill your pocket, but adventures fill your soul. – Jamie Lyn Beatty

Wanderlust Sayings

 43. “It is better to travel well than to arrive.”

 44. “Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.”

 45. “Do not dare not to dare.”

 46. “Life is short and the world is wide.”

 47. Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world. – Gustav Falubert

Modest Travel Quote

 48. Do you really want to look back on your life and see how wonderful it could have been had you not been afraid to live it?” – Caroline Myss

 49. “If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home.” – James Michener

 50. “Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.” – Anonymous

 51. “Never let your memories be greater than your dreams.”

 52. “I travel a lot; I hate having my life disrupted by routine.” – Caskie Stinnett

 53. “Not all those who wander are lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

 54. “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” – Lao Tzu

 55. The most beautiful in the world is of course, the world itself. – Wallace Stevens

World Quotes

 56. “Travel far enough, you meet yourself” -David Mitchell

 57. “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have traveled.” – Mohammed

 58. “Fill your life with experiences, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.” –Unknown

 59. “A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.” Lao Tzu

 60. Better to see something once than to hear about it a thousand times. 

Traveling Abroad Quotes

 61. “Actually, the best gift you could have given her was a lifetime of adventures.” –Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

 62. “Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert

 63. “I always wonder why birds choose to stay in the same place when they can fly anywhere on earth, then I ask myself the same question.” –Harun Yahya

 64. “I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

 65. Take only memories, leave only footprints. 

Traveling Sayings

 66. “We live in a world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.” ― Jawaharial Nehru

 67. “Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.”  – Anita Desai

 68. “This wasn’t a strange place; it was a new one.” – Paulo Coelho

 69. “We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.” – Anais Nin

 70. The life you have led doesn’t need to be the only life you have. – Anna Quindlen

Wandering Quotes

 71. Live your life by a compass, not a clock. – Stephen Covey

 72. “Surely, of all the wonders of the world, the horizon is the greatest.” – Freya Stark

 73. “I travel because it makes me realize how much I haven’t seen, how much I’m not going to see, and how much I still need to see.” – Carew Papritz

 74. “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” –Mark Twain

 75. “I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.” – Mary Anne Radmacher

DestinationsEuropeTravel

VISITING ZUGSPITZE – GARMISCH GERMANY [TRAVEL GUIDE]

Zugspitze_featured

Germany is a phenomenal country to visit and experience their culture! After living there for over 3 years, I grew to love all it had to offer and still go back as often as I can. It’s also where I met Linn so that’s also kind of important to me.

Contents

  1. Introduction!
  2. Getting to Zugspitze
    1. Zugspitze from Germany
    2. Zugspitze from Austria
  3. What’s up there?
    1. Siteseeing
    2. Skiing/Snowboarding
    3. Food and Drink
    4. Gifts

Adventure in Zugspitze

Intro to Visiting Zugspitze Garmisch-Partenkirchen

I loved every minute of being in Germany (well unless I was working). The whole country is beautiful and a great place to go siteseeing, Zugspitze is no exception. Nestled in the southern part of Bavaria and the highest mountain in Germany, Zugspitze is a towering mountain of awesomeness. Coming in at 2,962m (9,718ft), Zugspitze is not the easiest (but also not the hardest) mountain to climb. No worries though, if you don’t want to climb there’s a cable car that can take you right to the top! We’ll cover that in a bit though, first lets talk about how to even get to a spot to prepare ascending this beast.

Top of Zugspitze

Transportation

Getting to Zugspitze can be done from Germany or Austria as the mountain slices right through both countries. While I recommend driving as it was simple and easier to get around, there are other options depending on the side you choose. But if you can, I strongly recommend renting a vehicle or taking some form of local transportation to get around.

Zugspitze From Germany

Zugspitze Train

Train (Choo choo!)

If you’re coming from the German side, it’s best to reach Garmisch-Partenkirchen to start your journey, as the Zahnradbahn (cogwheel train) connects the city to the mountain and gives a direct train to Zugspitze. NOTE: There is still a short distance to either hike or take a very short cable car ride to get all the way to the top. For more info on ticket prices, check here.

Zugspitze Cable Car

Cable Car From Eibsee To Zugspitze

An alternative to getting to the top is to take the same train mentioned before, but stop at Eibsee (the lake below the mountain), and then take the longer Eibsee cable car all the way to the top of Germany’s highest peak! I recommend this route as it offers the best view and you get a wonderful site of Lake Eibsee below.

Hiking Zugspitze

There are also 5 main hiking trails you can take that are usually split over two days. These hikes take time and while this mountain isn’t the hardest, I highly recommend you be fit and trained for climbing. I chose the cable car personally, so if you want more information on the trails, check this out.

Zugspitze From Austria

Cable Car Again!

In addition to the hiking trails listed previously, there is another cable car on the Austrian side that will get you to Zugspitze. The Tiroler Zugspitzbahn in Ehrwald, Austria offers rides up the mountain in short time and to compare prices, you can check their website.

What’s On Zugspitze To See?

Zugspitze Summit

Siteseeing

Once you get to the top of Zugspitze, you can finally relax and take in the view. Look towards Germany and see Lake Eibsee far below, then do a 180 and see the beauty of Austria! There are multiple viewing areas to get to feel the Alps with your eyes, and if you’re feeling adventurous, there is a slight climb (can be dangerous!) to get to the very tip top of the peak.

Skiing/Snowboarding

Thankfully, due to Zugspitze’s altitude, it is covered in snow for over half the year! This is great news if you’re into skiing or snowboarding as they have awesome trails that are commonly covered in fresh powder. Additionally, if you’re not into skiing or snowboarding, there is a sledding area below the summit (same altitude as where the cog train comes to) for some family fun. The slopes weren’t open at the time we went due to maintenance, so we decided to enjoy some sledding 😊.

Food & Drinks

It takes time to go up the mountain and time to go down. If it weren’t for the restaurants at the top, I would have been hangry about 80% of the time. There are a few options for restaurants once you get there and it’s fantastic German cuisine! To get more info, check here! Even if you are traveling on a budget, you don’t need to have a sit down meal while you’re up there. Scattered around Zugspitze are smaller eateries and food truck sized stands for snacks and refreshments!

Gifts

If you’re anything like us, mementos and gifts for family are a must to grab on any of our travels. We always visit these places rich in culture that have unique aspects we may never see again, so we always try to take a small piece back with us. If that’s you too, then rejoice since there’s plenty of shops to grab presents from at the top!

Zugspitze

Overall

So is the trip worth it? Should you take the time to travel to Gramisch-Partenkirchen and ascend Zugspitze? Absolutely! I spent 3 years in Germany and loved this place so much I actually ended up going twice. It’s a perfect getaway and will be a place to create memories and enjoy the beauty of Germany!

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AMAZING Places to Visit in Georgia – [TRAVEL GUIDE]

Savannah GA

Places to Visit in Georgia

Contents:

  1. Intro and Inspiration for this post
  2. Outdoor adventures
    1. Stone Mountain Park
    2. Tybee Island Beach
    3. Callaway Gardens
  3. Museums
    1. World of Coca Cola
    2. National Infantry Museum
  4. Historical Interest
    1. Savannah (all of it)
    2. Westville
    3. Fort McAllister State Park, Richmond Hill
  5. Overall

Best Places to Visit in Georgia Inspiration

I’m very excited to write this post as Georgia is not just a beautiful place to visit, but it’s also where I was born and raised! Most people think of rednecks and country music when they mention Georgia (and they’re partially right to do so), but there’s so much more to see and do in this amazing state!

There’s actually so much to do that I tried my hardest to narrow down the possibilities, but still had to organize them into separate categories just to make it a little easier to read. So let’s not take all day, what are the best places to visit in Georgia?

OUTDOOR ADVENTURES!

Georgia is a gorgeous collection of forest and greenery, so it’s only right to start with the outdoor adventures you can take. I’ve listed my favorite three below but by no means is this list comprehensive.

1. Stone Mountain Park:

Stone Mountain GA

Stone Mountain Park is only 26(ish) minutes east from the center of Atlanta. It’s a fairly well-known place and can get crowded during the summer months. We went a little later when it was starting to cool off, so there was minimal foot traffic and no stampedes thankfully. Also BRING WATER! Not because there isn’t any, but you will be walking around a lot and staying hydrated is important! Especially if you’re going during a summer month.

Depending on what you’re into, Stone Mountain has options for camping, winter events, and other live events that go on throughout the year. I recommend checking out their website to see what kind of things they have planned. In fact, there’s a bit too much to do there for me to mention in one post. Personally, Linn and I just wanted to get some hiking in and see the top of this gigantic rock!

Stone Mountain Cable Car

We were grateful to see they have a lift to the top of the mountain (probably because hiking it would be near impossible), so we began our journey there! Now I’m not necessarily afraid of heights, but being in a tin bucket that high made my nerves a little shaky. But you do get used to it after a while. We made it to the top and were greeted by park workers and were allowed to explore the top of the dome. They also have quite a bit of information on how it formed and the history around the mountain (I love learning on trips!).

Stone Mountain Georgia

2. Tybee Island

Tybee Island

This magnificent place is just along the coast next to Savannah, GA. You’ll see Savannah mentioned here more than once since it’s basically the best place to visit in Georgia if you’ve never truly experienced the south.

I spent the fourth of July here and there’s tons of rich culture to explore and oh man the FOOD! I grew up with things deep fried and this was nostalgia central.

I didn’t stay too long on Tybee island, and regret it. But if you’re looking for some beach fun and experience a Georgia coast, this is the best place to do it!

3. Callaway Gardens

Callaway Gardens Georgia

Callaway Gardens is mentioned here and there for things to do in Georgia, but personally I loved the free roam aspect and it became one of my favorite places (it’s a bit romantic too given the right time of year). Callaway Gardens is similar to Stone Mountain in that there is a plethora of things to do and so little time. So, we focused on only the gardens and just exploring ourselves. If you’ve interested in events, golf, or other things happening during your time there, definitely check out their schedule!

As far as the gardens themselves go, there are walk paths basically everywhere. Plus, most of the gardens can be experienced indoors as they manage the climate and other conditions, so it can still be enjoyed in bad weather. There’s also an awesome butterfly garden where we learned a little more about them than we bargained for and got to basically live a Disney princesses dream for half an hour.

GEORGIA MUSEUMS!

Ok, so those are awesome places for outdoor adventures in Georgia. But what if you’re a history buff like me? What if you want to learn and experience some past culture? Well the next two are perfect suggestions for that!

1. World of Coca Cola

Coca Cola Museum

I know, a strange ‘museum’? But trust me, Georgians love their Coca Cola and put plenty of effort into make this museum worthwhile! There are numerous exhibits inside with plenty to see and experience. Their general admissions tickets are roughly $17, or were when I went, and of course there are discounts for seniors, youth, and toddlers. It’s honestly not a steep price for what they offer.

You get to sample different flavors of coke dispersed and sold in other countries, see the rich history behind the company and their secret formula, and even a sneak peek into bottling! I know, probably not the most exciting thing when you read it here. But trust me, it’s a wonderful experience.

2. National Infantry Museum

National Infantry Museum Columbus

This one is special on my list since I not only loved it, I also grew up about 30 minutes away. So as soon as they opened (both of my grandfathers and myself served, so we’re pro military history), we went straight there to check it out.

I do have to offer a bit of warning. This place is not something you go to just see. The way the curators have the exhibits laid out for you to experience is truly awe-inspiring and will be emotional. Especially if you’re like me and have a family and personal history in the military. There really isn’t any experience like this museum and to be honest, if you’re into truly experiencing history, forget about the other destinations on this list and just go here.

You walk through the exhibits and are greeted with some of the best history curation you can find. All of your senses are bombarded and emotion rushes over you. You see sites of infantry soldiers storming beaches and navigating trenches, while simultaneously hearing the roar of helicopters drowning out the sounds of leaders shouting orders to their men. The vibration of tank tracks rolling on the ground next to you. While no group of sensations can bring you close enough to the stress felt by the soldiers who lived it, this museum does the best in my opinion, to bring you to an emotional point that no other place does.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve visited so I’m not sure if things have changed much. But I strongly believe that experiencing history should be felt, not simply read. And this museum over delivered on my expectations.

If you’re curious about a few of their exhibits, or just want more information, check them out here! 

HISTORICAL INTEREST

I didn’t put too many museums since Georgia has some interesting museums, but none jump out quite like the ones mentioned, onto historical interests!

1. Savannah (ALL OF IT)

Savannah GA

I mentioned earlier in this post that Savannah would pop up again. Oh man, this city is so rich in history and there’s so much to experience. Keep in mind, the United States of America isn’t that old in comparison to other nations. So, when you’re comparing the history of Bavaria or London, to the history of a place in the USA, then of course there will be more that happened in Europe. Even considering that, the amount of crazy history that has occurred in this amazing city is astonishing. I mean, it’s been around almost 300 years and has burned down twice and almost a third time during Sherman’s March. Basically, this city has seen some s@*#.

Despite the terrors and negative occurrences that have plagued Savannah’s past, it emerged a more beautiful city than any other in Georgia (in my opinion). In fact, I usually recommend that you explore a city by yourself and just research the history… Not this time. There are hidden gems and amazing things to learn from this place and I STRONGLY recommend booking a professional tour! There are history tours through the city, about the filming of Forrest Gump (since some awesome shots were taken there), and even ghost tours!

For more info on Savannah, check out Explore Georgia’s section on Savannah.

Westville

Oh boy, I remember going here for a field trip when I was in middle school (yes, I’ve been experiencing Georgia that long) and have been back a few times throughout the years. At the time of writing this, they are currently moving from their previous location and will now be in Columbus GA. I’m not sure if the grand opening has happened yet, but hopefully it has, because I loved this place! Be sure to check their availability here.

Basically, the whole place is an 1800s town, literally everything is old fashioned. You walk around getting to experience a culture long gone. Get carted around in a horse drawn carriage, visit your local blacksmith, even see how they make cotton into clothing! This was definitely a highlight of my childhood that I look forward to taking the girlfriend to when it reopens!

Fort McAllister State Park

Fort McCallister

The final destination recommendation for exploring Georgia. There’s quite a bit to do here depending on what you fancy. From picnics, camping, hiking, cottages, and a civil war museum. There’s plenty of history to be felt here and a lot to experience.

There are still remnants of confederate fortifications and barracks, so you can walk the grounds and have a glimpse into the past during our nations civil war. Obviously this isn’t a historical site you go to ‘enjoy’. It’s a place to be somber and take in what it took for the USA to get to where it is.

Overall

There’s a lot to do in Georgia. I’ve spent roughly 19 of the last 26 years of my life in Georgia and was always fascinated at the rich history to be discovered. If you want to look at more places, Explore Georgia is a great resource and very easy to navigate (link below). If there are any questions or something specific you want to ask a Georgia native, just leave a comment below! Especially let me know if you have some better ideas for best places to visit in Georgia!

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