Spring is just around the corner and we can look forward to shaking off the thaw of winter with warmer temperatures, bluer skies, and longer days. As we await a return to a new normal in the international travel industry, there has never been a better time to explore what’s on our doorstep in the United States.
These are the best cities in the US to visit during the spring season, combining culture, wine, nature, and seasonal flora.
Washington DC is resplendent during the spring months when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. These trees were gifted to the city by Japan in 1912 and have wowed residents and visitors ever since. The National Cherry Blossom Festival takes place in mid to late March for four weeks when the blossoms are in full bloom.
During the month of March, the city’s museums honor National Women’s Month with special exhibitions at the likes of the National Portrait Gallery, Hillwood Estate, and the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans is one of the liveliest cities in the US and there is always something going on. The New Orleans Jazz Festival takes place in April and is always guaranteed to put a ‘spring’ in your step. The event celebrates the indigenous music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana which means that beyond jazz you will hear the likes of blues, Cajun, Afro-Caribbean, folk, Latin, bluegrass, and beyond.
Furthermore, Jazz Fest features a full program of crafts events and food opportunities.
The country of New Zealand draws travelers from all over the world for its stunning landscapes and laid back small towns. Even though travel is restricted to this magical country right now, we can always dream of an adventure to this country with many hidden spots to discover.
The city of Auckland is full of diversity and personality. It is also New Zealand's largest city, with a population of nearly 1.5 million. If you're looking for somewhere exciting to go to on your next vacation, Auckland is the place to be. Why do you ask? Below are some of the top reasons you shouldn't miss the opportunity to visit this magnificent city.
1. There's a myriad of daring adventures to be had. Helicopter rides, hiking, motorbiking, kayaking, and bungee jumping are just a few of the popular activities within the city.
2. You'll find the city is brimming with natural beauty. Preserved parks, stunning gardens, sandy beaches, volcanoes, and beautiful alpine forests, make up most of Auckland.
3. The coastlines will leave you breathless. Auckland is almost entirely enclosed by vast waters, creating amazing coastlines nearly all around the city.
4. You must explore Waiheke Island, the island isn't just sandy white beaches with huge rocks blanked in greenery. It's full of art galleries, vineyards, and flavorful wines.
5. The zoo is an exciting adventure. You can visit over 1400 animals (135 species). Many of them are native to New Zealand.
The World’s Best Wine Destinations
Wine pairs beautifully with cheese but it goes even better with travel. Visiting wine destinations around the world provides the opportunity to sample long-standing vintages and discover emerging varieties and modern vinification techniques. A country’s wines draw out the flavors in the nation’s dishes and are best experienced as part of a meal or tasting at a vineyard.
This is a handy guide to the world’s best wine destinations.
Wine is produced in every single region of Italy and a number of these are home to the oldest wine-producing regions in the world. Tuscany stands out as the most prominent wine Italian region with its vine-clad hills and cypress trees. The flagship wine, Chianti, compliments the majority of Italian foods and is recognizable by its distinct hue of bright red.
Recommended winery: Antinori nel Chianti Classico
Boasting an esteemed list of red, white, rosé, and sparkling wines, France naturally ranks highly as one of the world’s best wine destinations. Bordeaux is the number one region for reds where flavorsome and full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Grenache varieties lead the way and are best enjoyed alongside a cheeseboard. Meanwhile, those visiting the balmy South of France will appreciate a chilled glass of rosé from the Provence region. The Alsace wine region route presents over 1,000 wine producers scattered among rural France.
Recommended winery: Maison Joseph Cattin
Hidden Gems of Malta
With fast ferries connecting Sicily to Malta in as little as 2 hours, this sunkissed Mediterranean island is an easy trip from Italy.
Malta offers a wide selection of activities to fill your days. The historic cities of Valletta and Mdina are perfect for culture enthusiasts while sandy beaches and crystal clear waters offer expansive snorkeling, diving, and swimming opportunities – not forgetting the lagoons of Comino island.
But for those looking to get off the beaten track, here are 6 hidden gems of Malta.
Situated in the heart of the island of Gozo, the Old Prison sits within the Citadelle De Victoria complex and dates back to over 500 years. Etchings and graffiti in the walls glean insight into the inmates who were imprisoned here – namely the more disobedient knights of St John. You may visit the grounds as a side trip while exploring the Fran Castello Folklore Museum, the Natural Science Museum, and the cathedral.
Ghajn Tuffieha Bay
Malta’s main island is blessed with beautiful beaches that urge you to soak up the 300+ days of sunshine lavished upon the island. Escape the crowds at Ghajn Tuffieha Bay which features red sand and minimal amenities limited to sun loungers and a simple bar. Only a short drive south of the popular Golden Bay, this protected beach is only accessible via a descent of 100 steps. Extend your visit by hiking the Clay Cliffs, and, even better – catching the sunset from the trail.
Extraordinary trips for exceptional travelers, where the details make all the difference