I love the country life in a big way. And I really wanted to take some time to visit the southern part of the country. I got just the chance to do that over the past couple of months, and every moment of my trip was worth it. My last leg of the trip is coming up, and after looking through the hotels in Cullman Alabama a few days ago, I booked my last hotel room of my trip.
Just like anyone else, I really didn’t get all that much vacation time at my last time. I get the average two weeks out of every year, but when I run out of sick time, I have often needed to dip into my vacation time to get myself better. I had been thinking about switching jobs for awhile, and then it donned on me that I could make my own vacation time in between jobs. Continue reading “I Chose to Go on the Vacation of a Lifetime”
While icons and onion domes still have their place in Moscow, the capital is now the epicentre of Russia’s cutting-edge contemporary culture. Long-dormant creative tendencies are being cultivated; and they are blooming, as collectors and connoisseurs show a new appreciation for innovative artistic expression. To showcase these artworks, new venues are opening every year – many in surprising, post-industrial places.
Rediscovery of Russian art
In 2014, Christie’s sold over £45 million of Russian art. That same year, Valentin Serov’s Portrait of Maria Zetlin was sold for £9.3 million – the highest price ever paid for a Russian painting. In recent years both Sotheby’s and Christie’s have made record-breaking sales of Russian paintings, a market which has grown considerably over the past decade.
It is mostly private collectors who have blown up the ballooning market – so-called ‘New Russians’ with deep pockets and patriotic tastes. Indeed, the free-spending habits of the newly rich are stimulating a cultural revolution in Russia. While the greatest demand is reserved for 20th-century avant-garde artists, contemporary creatives are also benefitting.
The most famous private collector is supermodel Dasha Zhukova, who opened the Garage Museum of
The brilliance of fall in New England is legendary. Scarlet and sugar maples, ash, birch, beech, dogwood, tulip tree, oak and sassafras all contribute to the carnival of autumn color. But this trip is about much more than just flora and fauna: the harvest spirit makes for family outings to pick-your-own farms, leisurely walks along dappled trails, and tables that groan beneath delicious seasonal produce.
1. Lake Candlewood
With a surface area of 8.4 sq miles, Candlewood is the largest lake in Connecticut. On the western shore, the Squantz Pond State Park is popular with leaf-peepers, who come to amble the pretty shoreline. In Brookfield and Sherman, quiet vineyards with acres of gnarled grapevines line the hillsides. Visitors can tour the award-winning DiGrazia Vineyards (digrazia.com; 131 Tower Rd, Brookfield; 11am–5pm daily) or opt for something more intimate at White Silo Farm Winery (whitesilowinery.com; 32 CT 37; tastings $7; 11am–6pm Fri–Sun), where the focus is on specialty wines made from farm-grown fruit. For the ultimate bird’s eye view of the foliage, consider a late-afternoon hot-air-balloon ride with GONE Ballooning (flygoneballooning.com; 88 Sylvan Crest Dr; adult/under 12yr $250/125) in nearby Southbury.
From Danbury, at the southern tip of the lake, you have a choice of heading north via US 7, taking in Brookfield and New Milford (or trailing the scenic eastern shoreline along Candlewood Lake Rd S); or heading north along
The dog days of summer are over. But despite the chill in the air, there’s no need to be downhearted. Autumn is the most spectacular season, a last hurrah before the bitter winds of winter take hold.
Pull on your walking boots and head to one of these stunning destinations to witness glorious autumn colour. We promise that as you crunch through the fallen leaves, the dazzling views won’t fail to impress.
Autumn in Japan is every bit as stunning as the short-lived haname cherry blossom season in spring. Kouyou, or autumn leaves, can be seen across the country, starting in the northern island of Hokkaidō and spreading quickly south from the end of September. The ancient capital of Nara, a short train ride from Kyoto, makes a wonderful viewing spot. Its vast park is awash with colour, with sensational views of red, gold and yellow leaves along the paths up to Tamukeyama shrine in its northeast corner.
Agawa Canyon, Canada
Hop on board the Agawa Canyon Tour Train this autumn and you’ll be treated to some of the most beautiful fall
If you want to see the flora and fauna of Australia up close, then you don’t want to miss a visit to Grampians National Park, which is close to the city of Melbourne. This type of excursion will leave you spellbound, as you can see the animals and plants indigenous to Australia whilst travelling on a tour through the astounding park.
A Little Bit of Park History
The park, which is known as Gariwerd by the local indigenous people, is a beautiful and natural area that is also the best site for Aboriginal rock art in the southeastern part of Australia. Mt. Duwil, or Mt. William, is the highest peak of the Grampians. Major Thomas Mitchell led a small team of explorers there in 1836.
Mitchell chose to name the area and mountains the Grampians in honour of a rugged area in his native homeland of Scotland. Afterwards, Europeans began to settle in the area after hearing favourable reports about the potential for grazing land.
After Mitchell’s exploration, the Grampians became a centre for mining, timber production and farming and also a source of water for the area’s farms. In 1872, the area was
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