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ESP_Bajo_el_sol_Tenerife

Winter is nearing its end but cold days still lie in wait. You are sure to be fed up of wearing your coats, scarves and gloves by now. We have the solution. Visit the island of Tenerife, where the spring is eternal, the sun always shines and you can enjoy relaxation at the perfect temperature.

Tenerife is the place to enjoy a vast array of multicolored sand beaches, bright sunshine and an expanse of coastline. What is more, its beaches are amongst the best in the Canary Islands, many of them holding the Blue Flag awarded by the ADEAC for the quality of their waters.​ El Bollullo, in the municipality of La Orotava, is a beautiful, remote beach of volcanic sand which stands out due to the extraordinary cleanliness of its waters and its peaceful atmosphere. El Duque is a beach of fine golden sand that is set in one of the newest areas of Costa Adeje and surrounded by a beautiful coastal path that links more than 8 beaches. With calm waters and a 700 m stretch of sand, Playa del Duque delights visitors with all the services and quality it has to offer. Next to the small tourist town of El Médano is the beach of the same name which, at 2 km, is the longest on the island. Its fine white sand invites you to stroll to its southern edge, where there is an extraordinary volcanic cone, the Red Mountain (La Montaña Roja), which is a protected nature reserve due to its outstanding ecological significance. Surf lovers will appreciate El Socorro beach, a common site for surfers to practice and compete. Las Teresitas is possibly the most popular beach in Tenerife’s capital and is located just 7 km from the city center. It is ideal for a family day out due to its fine white sand and the breakwater that protects it from currents and swell. It is sprinkled with palm trees and also has shower, changing-room and sun-lounger facilities.

And these are just a few examples. The only thing we can assure you is that in Tenerife the good weather rarely takes a vacation.  Come and enjoy it!

 

“IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts group has 7 hotels on the island of Tenerife. These 4- and 5-star hotel complexes enjoy spectacular locations in Tenerife, on the ocean’s edge and in peaceful and relaxed areas to offer their guests the best services and the most fulfilling vacations possible in the Canaries.”

 

CAR_Tulum

Tulum, an old Mayan port, is one of the most visited and beautiful Mayan cities in Mexico; part of its charm lies in the fact that it was built facing the sea. Tulum was a Mayan fortress which experienced moments of glory at the end of the Classical period (around the year 1000 AD). The most iconic of its structures, called “El Castillo” (The Castle), is located at the edge of a cliff from which the turquoise-colored waters of the sea can be appreciated. This is, without doubt, the most photographed corner of the area and you must not miss it!

In a visit to Tulum, in addition to aquatic activities such as snorkeling and diving, trips through natural wells and underground rivers, or the visit to other Mayan cities in the region, there are many more activities on offer. A visit to El Castillo, mentioned above, one of Tulum’s most noteworthy structures due to its size and location is a must. On top of it there is a temple, whose façade has three accesses adorned with deities, columns of serpents and zoomorph figureheads. In The Temple of the Descending God you must not miss out on visiting the sculpture of the descending deity, engraved over the door.

It depicts a winged man falling on Earth, emulating the setting of the sun.

Close to the entrance to Tulum archaeological park you will find the Temple of the Frescoes. It is a two-story construction whose interior frescoes depict some aspects of Mayan cosmogony, the image of the god of the rain and several offerings dedicated to the ancient gods.

And to finish off the day and relax after so much activity, there is nothing better than taking the specially-designed stairs down the cliff to have the most incredible and refreshing dip on its beautiful beach. If you visit the area during the second fortnight of October you cannot miss the Sea Turtle Festival that takes place in Tulum. The communities from all over the Riviera Maya and Cancun take part, and include activities such as a kite competition, sand sculpture competition, beach-cleaning, ecological workshops and the release of baby turtles on Xcacel beach, located 16 kilometers north of Tulum. A wonderful spectacle!

 

What to eat: A real bonus of this zone lies in its fish and seafood dishes, such as pescado tikin-xic (fish seasoned with achiote), shrimp with garlic mojo sauce and ceviches (raw fish dishes cured in citrus). Always ask about the fish of the day; they will almost without fail offer you a barracuda, swordfish or gilt-head bream fillet and prepare it to your taste.

 

The IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts establishments in Mexico are located in spectacular areas to bring their guests closer to all the country’s qualities: they are located just a few meters from the beaches, surrounded by nature and a stone’s throw from the most important archaeological sites.”

 

 

 

 

Earth Hour 2015

 

On 28th March IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts will be taking part in ‘Earth Hour’, the biggest global mobilisation campaign in the fight against climate change, by switching off all lights at its central offices in Majorca and its hotels for an hour.

Now in its ninth year, ‘Earth Hour’ will see key landmarks and cities across the world switch off their lights at 8:30pm as a sign of commitment to the environment.

London, 25 March 2015. IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts’ central offices, and more than 100 of its hotels located around the world will be switching off their lights to mark ‘Earth Hour’, the world’s biggest mobilisation campaign that seeks to raise awareness of the need to protect the environment.

Organised by the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) ‘Turn off the light, turn on the Earth’ on Saturday 28th March will see more than 7,000 towns and cities in 160 countries switch off their lights in support of this initiative.

IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts are keen to support and play a more active role in raising awareness of this campaign. As a result, at 8.30 p.m. all the lights at its central offices in Majorca and at all its hotels will be switched off for 60 minutes.

The company has previously taken part in the campaign by switching off the lights at its hotels in Mexico, Brazil and the Dominican Republic, but this will be the first time that all IBEROSTAR hotels will be involved. In addition to switching off the lights, guests and employees will also receive information about the initiative.

 

About IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts 

IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts is a resort hotel chain based in Palma de Mallorca (Balearic Islands, Spain), founded by the Fluxà family in 1986. IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts is an integral part of GRUPO IBEROSTAR, one of the main Spanish tourist companies with over 80 years of experience, which currently has more than 100 hotels around the world.

For more information: iberostar.com

BRA_LaMejorCocinaBAhiana

Salvador da Bahia has one of most passionate culinary traditions in all of Brazil, thanks in large part to the huge African influence on its culture. The African customs (such as the use of dendê (palm) oil, a typical Bahian ingredient) are fused with European and also native traditions, resulting in intense and exotically-tropical dishes.

From small bars on the beaches and streets of the city to sophisticated restaurants, there is a multifaceted and vast range of culinary options to go out for a meal in Bahia, with both local and international flavors.

Yemanjá: The name of the restaurant honors the goddess of the sea, as does the menu, specializing in fish and seafood prepared according to legendary regional techniques taught by the first owner, Anáila Moreira. The picturesque Praia da Armação beach acts as a visual backdrop. Make sure you try the muqueca and the acarajé de bobó. Their cocktails are also very good. Address: Av. Otávio Mangabeira Nº 4655.

Bahia Café: Ideal for live-music lovers. You can have an appetizer or some Bahian dishes. Bahia Café is located in the Mirante dos Aflitos and provides views of the beautiful landscape of Bahia de Todos os Santos (All Saints’ Bay). Fridays and Saturdays are the most fun days of the week as a lot of people head for this spot and it is more lively than ever!

Dona Mariquita: Typical rustic and homemade Candomblé food. The menu, created by the owner, Leila Carreiro, rescues some age-old Afro-Bahian dishes, such as hauçá rice and mariene de coco, from oblivion. Tradition and a gourmet touch with an interesting cultural program. Address: Rua do Meio 178, Rio Vermelho.

Boi Preto:  Without any shadow of a doubt, the best Churrascaria in the city. Boi Preto is Salvador’s busiest churrascaria in Salvador, with excellent customer service and where the cuts of meat are served one after another, non-stop. The quality of the meats and the starters buffet is complemented with the beauty of the views over Praia da Armação beach. Address: Avenida Otávio Mangabeira s/n, Pituba.

Mama Bahia: Excellent roast meats served in braziers, it also offers grilled fish and traditional moquecas, along with an enticing selection of wines. Located in an old 18th century house in the middle of Pelourinho. Address: Rua Alfredo Brito (Portas do Carmo), 21. Opening hours: 11 am until midnight.

 

“IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts has two 5-star all-inclusive vacation complexes in Salvador da Bahia. the IBEROSTAR Praia Do Forte and the IBEROSTAR Bahía Both hotels offer guests the ideal Brazilian vacation and beautiful natural surroundings. These luxurious lodgings provide comfort, a wide variety of bars and restaurants, spa centers, pools and a full program of leisure and sport activities.”

 

ESP_LaFotografia_y_Viajes

As lovers of trips, we cannot avoid attempting to capture landscapes, moments or situations with our cameras, be it with the most professional devices or the wonderful cameras with which all smartphones are now equipped. Photography is an essential component of vacations. Photos can amaze us or encourage us to go and visit a place, although some can also leave a bitter aftertaste, but it doesn’t matter because it is the experience that counts. We take photos of landscapes, monuments, cities, beaches, people… moments that we will be able to remember later with that dose of nostalgia that will encourage us to pack our cases once again and set off to experience new sensations.

Here is a website with what are probably some of the best trip photos in the world. Let’s see if looking at them makes you fancy getting on the next plane:

http://fotosmundo.net/

Enjoy!

 

 

“If you are a lover of trips, enjoy the over 100 IBEROSTAR hotels scattered across 16 countries all over the world.”

 

ESP_gastronomia-pascua-mallorca

Holy Week (Semana Santa) is an entirely religious festival and, as such, includes getting together as a family around the table as one of the inevitable events. And on an island such as Majorca, there are few families that do not get together over these holidays, whether or not they celebrate the acts and traditions related to the death and resurrection of Jesus, and during which gastronomy and dishes prepared at home with the help of the children and older members of the family take on great importance. Panades, rabiols and crespells are the clearest examples of this type of annual event.

Panades

The recipe for panades (small pies) is the same throughout the island, but in no house is it identical. This circular-based pie with salted or sweet dough, according to individual taste, can be filled with lamb, peas, sobrassada (cured Balearic sausage), botifarra (Catalan sausage) and bacon, interchanging the ingredients depending on the area, town, family or even the cook within the household. In some places, the meat is also swapped for fish, normally smooth hound. To distinguish between the different variations, the seal of the lid differs according to the filling.

Robiols

This is always a sweet pie in the shape of a half moon, and it is a children’s favorite. The filling can be cottage cheese, fruit jelly (normally quince and apricot) or cabell d’àngel jam. Although, recently, the changes in cooking techniques and the tastes of the little ones have led to chocolate or whipped cream centers.

Crespells

The children will also jump at the chance to make crespells, as they are cookies with different shapes, depending on the molds owned by the family. The dough is the same as that used to make robiols but there is no filling.

Frit de Pàsqua

Another traditional Holy Week dish is frit de Pàsqua, a stir-fry of peppers, lamb innards, blood, potato, peas, chili pepper and fennel, to which ingredients can be added or removed depending on the town or personal tastes. Basically, it is about celebrating the end of Lent with a good meat dish.

Rotlo

In the town of Alcúdia, in the north of the island, godparents traditionally give their godchildren a rotlo on the Thursday of Holy Week. This dessert is wheel-shaped and is decorated with colored candy.

Cocarrois

The savory version of robiols, with a vegetable filling, are called cocarrois. Traditionally, they were prepared after the harvest of the sweet onion, but in recent times they have made their way into the cookbook for any time of year. The filling is spinach, raisins and pine nuts, or onion, chard, cabbage, cauliflower and a final touch of camallot (cured sausage) or botifarra.

 

To savor them: The best place to savor these island delights is in local homes, but visitors can also buy them in the bakeries, known as forns in Majorcan, of all the towns on the island. This is true for all the dishes except the frit, which is best sampled in a typical celler (traditional Majorcan restaurant).

 

“The IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts hotels in Majorca place the most exciting experiences that the largest Balearic island has to offer within the reach of the visitor. The excellent locations of IBEROSTAR hotels in Majorca, spread across the island, provide an unmatched opportunity to discover all of its secrets.”

 

MED_tunez

Tunisia is a fascinating country. Archaeological sites, the Sahara desert and its oasis, its incredible beaches, a gastronomy which will leave an unforgettable taste in your mouth, a tradition beyond the imagination, its coasts, establishments dedicated to thalassotherapy and wellbeing, and the possibility of playing golf and other land-based sports provide tourists with the opportunity for an experience they won’t forget in a hurry. Every inch of Tunisia bears something fascinating, deriving sustenance from the incredible Mediterranean culture, where time passes slowly and the hours seem to stretch out so that every minute can be captured in your memory.

The turbulent history of Tunisia has left behind some archaeological sites that will serve to paint a picture of what was and remains this incredible African country. Its history of over 3,000 years marked by the great civilizations of the sea which bathes its coasts were enough for Unesco to declare seven of its wonders world heritage sites. The city of Bulla Regia, residence of the kings of Numidia, the streets and remains of the great Carthage, the ruins of the ancient city of Dougga – one of the most spectacular in the Mediterranean – Roman-Byzantine Africa’s golden city of Sbeitla, the ancient stretch of the Roman Oudhna road, the Punic town of Thuburdo Majus (the happy republic), the port of Útica and the incredible Roman coliseum of El Jem are but a few examples that will leave you breathless.

But if there is one thing that stands out in Tunisia, it is the desert. Beyond the spine-tingling vastness of the Chott el Djerid, the Sahara is becoming the protagonist of the whole landscape, sprinkled only with the oases through which life flows. Lost in an ocean of golden dunes, travelers can stop off in different places, which will support and reaffirm the belief that the desert is not a lifeless place. You cannot leave the country without experiencing the scent of the flowers of Kscar Ghilane, listening to the water at Tozeur cascade and the clattering of the old wooden train Le Lézard Rouge, which travels to the mountains of the north, or gazing at the characteristic round shapes of the houses of Matmata.

Tunisia also boasts more than 600 kilometers of beaches on which a great offer of services related to sun, sea and sand tourism have flourished. Each spot has its own characteristics and each beach is a unique and incomparable destination. The waters of Tabarka are sure to delight lovers of marine nature, Djerba’s architecture of rounded shapes will provide magnificent snapshots, the white and blue houses of Sidi Bou Saïd welcome visitors to experience the essence of the sea below the elevation on which they stand, the incredible thousand-year-old fortresses of Sousse will make your stroll a journey through time, and the capital status of the Fatimid caliphs of Mahdia in the 10th century will demonstrate that architectural planning is not exclusive to the 20th century.

But, for tourists looking for golf breaks, this African country boasts eight perfectly adapted courses designed by renowned architects. Located facing the coast, they present an attractive backdrop for practicing a sport which is growing increasingly popular.

On the other hand, Tunisia is the second best destination, after France, for getting a marine iodine treatment. With more than 40 thalassotherapy centers, the country has spent over a century treating bone diseases or grave rheumatism and profoundly re-balancing the organism. What is more, the Tunisian climate is perfect for letting yourself be pampered at any point of the year.

 

To eat: You cannot leave Tunisia without trying the spiced fish specialties, accompanied by the dish par excellence: couscous. Not forgetting signing off with one of the honey and nut pastries.

 

IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts’ Tunisian hotels invite tourists to experience unique moments during their trips that only this country could produce. The unmatched locations of IBEROSTAR’s hotels in Djerba, Hammamet, Mahdia and Sousse make it easy to discover Tunisia’s rich culture and deep, natural beauty.”

MED_RinconesBudapest

The version of a city that you see in guidebooks is not always the version in which its residents live. Travelers seeking to coexist within a destination, to feel a part of it and not be a mere spectator, normally encounter places which have been prepared and touched up to form part of visitors’ photo albums. But all cities have places that make them what they are. And these are not necessarily the mass tourism reference points. Budapest is full of them.

The central market is one such place. The essential point for buying paprika, salami or food take back and enjoy at home, it is also the perfect place to learn to cook typical dishes. On its top floor, travelers can attend gulash, cottage cheese crepes or poppy-seed strudel classes. But what is more, in this very same market you will also find lángos (a type of pizza made with mashed potato), which you can enjoy in any square. In fact, there are many places where you can purchase street food. The markets of Lehel square and Fény street, or the Gyorkorcsi and their peculiar Kolbászda, are perfect for those who will try anything.

One of the most characteristic dishes of Budapest (or Hungary in general) is the local version of strudel. In addition to the traditional apple, in the city of the Danube you can find poppy seed, cottage cheese, chicken, ham or cabbage variations, among many other ingredients. If you are looking for an ideal place to sample them, the Reteshaz Strudel House is one of the best.

But if we are talking about food and drink in peculiar places we cannot forget the visit to the Korda film studios. Some 50 kilometers from the city center, they have served as the sets for an endless list of movies, both European and American, and boast a magnificent cinema museum. The most curious point is that they are located in the so-called Valley of Joyful Women, a place in which there is a world of wineries in which to sample local liqueurs and wines, and enjoy traditional dishes in a setting that goes beyond magical.

Another common activity among the city’s residents is spending time in the public baths. There are many very famous ones, buy those of Széchenyi are the most authentic. With 15 pools, three of them enormous and open-air, and the rest indoor with different temperatures, it is one of the most popular places among the locals. Located in one of the many green areas of Budapest, you can finish the day with a visit to the zoo, the theme park or the botanical garden.

However, if what you want is to visit peculiar places, the Hospital in the Rock wears the crown. Excavated under the hill of Buda, it is a world of galleries where the wounded were looked after during World War II and the 1956 revolution. During the Cold War it was officially closed, but remained in operation. Today it is a museum with wax figures that recreate scenes from the time. Among the souvenirs are gas masks and first-aid kits. What is more, in the same mountain, there are some 160 caves, some of them which can be visited by inexperienced travelers and which make it a real magnet for the greatest of spelunkers.

Another curious feature of the city is its ruin bars. Very popular leisure spots situated, as the name indicates, in premises in ruins or even entire buildings, with a most peculiar decor. The vast majority are in the Erzsébetváros and the Jewish Quarter, which has become the go-to place for alternative culture, with art galleries, fashion stores, cooking classes, book-swapping markets… An unmissable place.

 

For the greatest music lovers: Budapest has an enticing offer in its jazz spots. These establishments offer live music in a relaxed and cool ambiance. Just as you would expect!

 

“IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts has a hotel in Budapest: the 5-star IBEROSTAR Grand Hotel Budapest. It has a spectacular location, surrounded by important buildings, embassies and shopping areas. It was built in 2011 and its rooms offer perfect luxury. It also has a complete spa center to ensure optimum relaxation during your stay, and its facilities cater for business conventions, incentive trips and other types of professional events in Budapest.”

 

CAR_PlayaBávaro

Playa Bávaro, situated in Punta Cana, in the east of the Dominican Republic, formed part of what has been named the Costa del Coco (Coconut Coast), which stretched out across 50 uninterrupted kilometers of white sand and crystal waters. Such is its beauty that on this part of the coast some celebrities, such as Julio Iglesias and the fashion designer Oscar de la Renta have set up home, constructing their stunning mansions here.

Considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, Playa Bávaro and its 3 km of white sand and crystal waters, bordered by picture-postcard palm trees, also offers a world of services and activities that make this spot the ideal place for both relaxation and nighttime leisure, activities and excursions. You will have activity proposals 24 hours a day! Excursions, discos, good gastronomy…

The water activities in Playa Bávaro are infinite; snorkeling, diving, sailing with catamarans, windsurfing… You are sure to find your favorite!

In addition, one of the most popular attractions is the Manatí Playa Bávaro, a vast park whose protagonists are the animals. They hold fish, dolphin and talking-parrot exhibitions which delight both children and adults.

You must not forget the majestic Basílica Metropolitana de Nuestra Señora de Altagracia, the most prized treasure of the city of Higüey, capital of the province.

Whatever your choice of leisure in Playa Bávaro, even for the world you must not miss the beautiful sunsets on the beach while you enjoy a delicious daiquiri.

 

IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts boasts four beautiful complexes in Punta Cana: the Iberostar Bávaro, the Iberostar Dominicana, the Iberostar Grand Hotel Bávaro and the Iberostar Punta Cana. They are incredible all-inclusive resorts located on the best beaches of Punta Cana and boasting a leisure offer for all kinds of groups.”

 

ESP_AndaluciaEnamora

The Andalusian territory is brimming with magic, enchantment and charm, regardless of the province or provinces that you deem most to your liking. In Andalusia you will feel completely comfortable and relaxed, and you will be delighted by its people, its customs and its culture.

The Andalusian sun has become one of the main attractions for tourists who come from all corners of the world, as the Andalusian community receives some three thousand hours of sunshine per year. But the sun is not Andalusia’s only attraction; there is also its beautiful, golden beaches which captivate visitors who arrive on vacations or on a weekend getaway, as well as its varied landscapes, its Mediterranean climate, its vast and well-looked-after coasts and, above all, the character of its residents, hugely hospitable and open, always ready to offer a helping hand and welcome visitors as best they know how.

Seville:

Seville is full of enchantment and romanticism, monumental character and charm. It is the capital of Andalusia and has become one of its most visited cities by tourists from all over. Visiting its Giralda (the cathedral tower), its stunning Gothic cathedral, the Torre del Oro (Gold Tower), the María Luisa Park, and enjoying the tranquility and mystery of the Santa Cruz district, ideal for strolling around narrow streets full of authenticity as a couple, is an experience for the senses.

Malaga:

If what you like is the dolce far niente (delicious idleness) and being looked after, we propose Malaga as the perfect destination for you. Millions of tourists from all over the world, attracted by its beautiful beaches, unique nightlife and festive atmosphere, head for Andalusia’s fantastic coastline. Stay in a good hotel where they will look after and pamper you. Discover the pleasure of lying on the beach with the sun caressing your skin, playing golf at a perfect temperature to loosen up your muscles or bumping into national and international celebrities in the trendiest spots.

Huelva:

If you are a lover of nature in its purest state, you cannot miss a visit to Huelva and its most famous park, Doñana. This Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage site is made up of different ecosystems, including the marshland zone of the Guadalquivir River, a spectacle of nature.

Cadiz:

Cadiz is one of the oldest cities in Spain. It is famous for its exquisite beaches of white sand and its long days of sun. The city of Cádiz is popularly known as the “Tacita de la Plata” (Tacit City of Silver) due to its intense light. Bathed in the waters of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, the gentle winter and warm summer temperatures make vacations in Cádiz a safe bet. The city has great maritime roots and boasts fantastic architectural beauty and happy, humorous people.

 

“The south of Spain is seductive, and this seduction can be felt intensely during vacations in Andalusia. The Andalusian resorts and hotels offered by IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts provide you with the best services to enable you to enjoy some unforgettable days as a family or couple.”