Mark Twain once wrote “Mauritius was made first and then heaven, heaven being copied after Mauritius.” And was he ever right!
Mauritius is an island nation in the Indian Ocean off the African continent. It is known for its beaches, wildlife, and world-renowned cuisine. Beyond its stunning beaches, turquoise lagoons, and abundant reefs, Mauritius is home to lush green mountains, cascading waterfalls, and the Black River Gorges Park. Aside from the enticing vistas and diverse terrain, there is truly something for everyone on this unique island!
Families and couples alike can relax on the beach alongside crystal clear blue-green water or indulge in the faster-paced activities the island has to offer. Highlights on the water include kite surfing, boat excursions to surrounding islands, scuba diving, snorkeling along the reefs, paddle boarding, waterskiing and more. By land enjoy playing golf, hiking to the mountain peak or through the gorge, and horseback riding.
Mauritius is a mecca for world-class luxury hotels with exceptional service. On the southwestern side of the island on Le Morne Beach resides the St. Regis, which exceeds every expectation. From the spa to the five star restaurants serving locally caught fresh fish cooked in front of you, this property ensures an experience you won’t soon forget!
To add spice to a tour of Italy, considering some sites off the beaten path can present some highly satisfying visual and gastronomic rewards.
Wine connoisseurs will especially enjoy the Piemonte, located just an hour south of Milan, which offers an abundant variety of Barolo and Barbaresco wines and is known as the “slow food” capital of the world. The hilltop towns remind one of Tuscany, but without the tourist crowds. A stop in Alba, the home of the white truffle (and the festivals that celebrate this delicacy), is not to be missed.
En route south towards Florence, food enthusiasts should sojourn in Emilia-Romagna, home of Parmigiano-Reggiano, balsamic vinegar, prosciutto di Parma, tortellini and much more. Bologna, a high-energy university city with Michelin-starred restaurants as well as a variety of local food markets, makes an ideal base from which to taste your way across the city sampling the local meats and cheeses. A proper balsamic vinegar tasting in Modena will forever change the way you eat ice cream or strawberries in the future.
Puglia, the region forming the heel of Italy’s boot, is the birthplace of burrata, the mozzarella and cream concoction which has become such a culinary rage. Blue seas, quaint beaches and a simple approach to life there make for a most relaxing visit amidst the architecture of the Trulli houses and rows and rows of olive groves producing Italy’s finest olive oils.
These destinations can be easily be added to any itinerary and often end up as a highlight of the vacation.
To start planning your undiscovered Italian adventure please contact Jill Taylor.
Old school is the new cool, or so it would seem with the resurgence of Jamaica’s popularity. The 1950’s produced classical and colonial gems, like Round Hill, with timeless appeal that still lure sophisticated travelers today. However, figureheads like Chris Blackwell, best known as Bob Marley’s producer and founder of Island Records, have reimagined the Jamaican vacation. Blackwell’s aptly named Island Outposts showcase the lesser-known corners of the expansive island. Pantrepant, a two-bedroom cottage occupying hundreds of acres on the edge of ‘Cockpit Country’, beckons adventurers inland for an authentic experience of living off the land – literally. For those seeking surf and sand, Rockhouse in Negril and Golden Eye in Oracabessa provide compelling alternatives. Irrespective of location, the distinct culture – a vibrant and dynamic music industry, an indigenous and soulful culinary tradition, and the originality of Rastafarianism – are what continue to make Jamaica a compelling destination.
To plan your own authentic Jamaican experience contact Julia Douglas.