Archive for December, 2017

Slight Turbulence6 sec read

Slight Turbulence - Terry Laban

Slight Turbulence - Terry Laban

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Healthy Travel Blog

Posted by Lustige Bilder - December 13, 2017 at 18:04

Categories: Travel   Tags: , ,

Traveling Stress-Free with IBS3 min read

Stress-free travel with IBS

You look around in a panic for the nearest bathroom. You need to get there NOW, but the plane is just about to take off and the fasten seatbelt sign is already on. Dealing with the symptoms of your irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for the next 15 minutes can feel like a lifetime. Sadly, many people suffer in silence and feel alone with their condition, but in reality more than 45 million Americans have IBS. That means there’s a good possibility someone else on that airplane eyeing up the bathroom for the very same reason.

The other sad fact is that IBS stops many sufferers from ever getting on that plane or traveling anywhere due to the pain, discomfort, anxiety and fear of embarrassment that it causes. But it doesn’t have to. Get a checkup with your doctor first, and then follow these tips from IBS sufferers like you. They’ll help you feel more confident about traveling with IBS.

Tip 1: Pick an Aisle Seat

Knowing you can excuse yourself whenever you want can help relieve your anxiety around IBS. Make sure you pick an aisle seat on the airplane when checking in and don’t get stuck on the inside of the booth at the restaurant.

Tip 2: Bring Your Medication

This may seem like a no-brainer, but bring your prescribed medication when you travel. You should also check with your doctor about what over-the-counter medications you can use as well to relieve your symptoms—and stock up, especially if you’re traveling overseas. Local pharmacies in other countries may not have exactly what you need or the brand you trust, so bring it with you.

Tip 3: BYOF

Speaking of bringing it with you, it’s also a good idea to BYOF, or bring your own food. Eating in new restaurants and trying foreign cuisine is a challenge for even the most iron-stomached among us. You should bring a few comfort foods from home that you know work well with your system, just in case you’re not comfortable with the culinary challenges you’ll be presented with.

Tip 4: Breathe Deeply

Anxiety is the enemy of all IBS sufferers since it can trigger your symptoms or make them worse. Breathing exercises can help relax your nervous system and help you avoid a flare-up. Breathe in deeply for a count of five, purse your lips, and blow out slowly for a count of ten. This will trick your body into feeling more relaxed, which makes it easy for your to calm your brain and your anxious thoughts.

Tip 5: Prepare for Stealth Mode

If you do have a flare-up, you can’t always choose when or where you’ll use the bathroom. This can increase your anxiety if you feel like you may suffer embarrassment. Prepare for stealth mode in case you need it. First, a well-timed flush of the toilet can help to mask embarrassing noises if you don’t have the privacy you need and want. Second, bring an odor eliminator with you, which are drops you put in the toilet water before you go to keep everything smelling fresh as a daisy. A quick search of your favorite online mega-retailer will provide plenty of options.

Tip 6: Come Clean

One of the worst things about IBS is the embarrassment many people feel about their symptoms. If you’re traveling with friends or family, it’s time to come clean about your condition. You’ll feel more relaxed, you won’t feel the need to hide the things you do to handle your symptoms, and you may even learn that someone else has the same issue (hey, there are 45 million of us!).

With a little preparation and a whole lot of bravery, you too can be a world traveler—even with your IBS. Each hurdle you overcome and success you experience will make your next trip that much easier.

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Posted by Lustige Bilder - December 12, 2017 at 19:24

Categories: Travel   Tags: , , ,

Top 4 Christmas Markets in Germany4 min read

German Christmas Market

Have you heard of Chriskindlmarkt? These popular, outdoor Christmas markets can be found in most German cities in the weeks leading up to the holidays, and they’re the perfect way to get into the spirit of the season with your family. You’ll find yourself immersed in festivities awash in lights, great food and beverages, and good cheer. These traditions have deep roots in German history, but each city, town and region has added its own local flavor to how they’re celebrated. They’re so popular that the idea has been exported to the United States, so you may have a Chriskindlmarkt in your own home town.

If you do have a chance to travel in Germany during the Christmas season, you’re sure to find something to put you in the holiday spirit. Today, there are over 2,500 Chriskindlmarkts (in fact, Berlin alone hosts 70 different ones). Here is your guide to the ones you cannot miss!

Cologne

Hands down, if you are going to visit any Chriskindlemarkt in Germany, don’t miss the one in Cologne. It is one of the most well-known Chriskindlemarkts and is placed perfectly next to the Cologne Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It plays home to the largest Christmas tree in the region and hosts nearly 200 booths with vendors offering handmade baubles and locally-sourced foods and wines. While walking through the market, you can hear Christmas music, visit the puppet theater and there is even a Grimm’s fairytales themed play!

Expert Tip: Try the Gluhwein, which roughly translates as glow wine, named for the hot irons once used for mulling. You’ll also glow yourself if you have the version mit Schuss, or with a shot of rum or other liquor. During the holidays you’ll find gluhwein stalls set up in public places and Christmas markets. This wine is sweetened and flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices, then served hot. It’s the perfect winter warmer for the cold December days in Germany.

Stuttgart

Another of the largest Chriskindlemarkts is in Stuttgart, one of the most walkable cities in Germany thanks to its low-traffic city square. This Chriskindlmarkt is set under the shadow of the Old Palace and has over 280 stalls. Nestled in the Black Forest area, the Stuttgart Chriskindlmarkt offers up local Swabian delicacies, and seasonal gifts like hard-carved nutcrackers and felted lamb slippers.

As if it wasn’t enticing enough, this Chriskindlmarkt also has concerts in the courtyard of Old Palace, with traditional German Christmas tunes and youth choirs that brought tears to my eyes. Over 3.6 million people frequent this market every year, so book your hotels in advance!

Dresden

The Chriskindlmarkt in Dresden dates back to the early 1400s, making it the oldest Chriskindlemarkt in Germany and the world. It features the world’s tallest Nutcracker and the world’s tallest Christmas pyramid. There are over 250 huts with glass-blowers, bakers, and wood-carvers in action to give visitors an idea of how much work and skill goes into each bauble. One of the most popular foods from Dresden that is sold at this market is stollen, a bread similar to fruitcake. On December 9th, Stollenfest commences with a colorful parade through the Old Town and a giant stollen bread is cut into thousands of pieces and given out to the crowd.

Expert Tip: The stollen tradition dates back to the 14th century, when it was baked to honor princes and church dignitaries. Legend has it that the lumps in stollen represent the humps of the camels that carried the three wise men on the first Christmas. You’ll find regional variations that include different types of fruits, nuts and seeds—everyone has their favorite.

Aachen

The city of Aachen is near the borders of Belgium and the Netherlands and their influence on the Chriskindlmarkt in the area is seen in the foods and knickknack craftsmanship. Featured foods include gingerbread, Skepulatius (a spiced biscuit), marzipan bread, and most famously printen. Printen is a gingerbread type delicacy and is the most famous baked good from Aachen. It’s so important to the people of Aachen that a giant printen stands in the market as a symbol of the city. This market is located adjacent the Aachen Cathedral, which is lit up with sparkling Christmas lights at night to give the market a true “Winter Wonderland” appearance.

Expert Tip: One of the most cherished traditions in Germany around Christmas is enjoying a little “down time.” The hustle and bustle leading up to holidays ends like clockwork the day before Christmas and continues through the day after. Markets and shops will close as people prepare to spend time with their families. The majority of commerce stops during these official holiday days, so don’t expect to do much sight-seeing, shipping, or other tourism activities. Stores and shops will open again on December 27, so plan your trip accordingly.

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Posted by Lustige Bilder - December 6, 2017 at 15:22

Categories: Travel   Tags: , , ,

Adventures in Liverpool: More than the Beatles or Premier League3 min read

St. Lukes Liverpool

When someone mentions London, you might immediately think of Big Ben, the Royal Family or the British flag. However, when you think of Liverpool, you may not have as much to associate with the city beyond the Beatles or the popular soccer team.

But for someone who has spent time in both these amazing cities, I can tell you they both have so much more to offer. Especially in Liverpool, there are some amazing opportunities to explore British culture. If you have the chance to visit Liverpool, here are some cool spots you can’t miss.

Hang Out at Albert Dock

During my stay in Liverpool, between seeing other parts of the city, I always found myself down at Albert Dock. Packed with restaurants, gift shops and museums, it’s easy to spend hours hanging out at the dock.

One of my favorite activities is to take a ride on the Wheel of Liverpool, which is located just a short distance from Albert Dock. It’s a great first activity when arriving in Liverpool because it gives you a bird’s eye view of the layout of the city.

My travel buddy and I happened to ride the wheel on our first day in Liverpool, which helped us figure out where all the spots we wanted to visit were located throughout the area.

Explore Churches

What took me by surprise when arriving in Liverpool is that it’s home to some incredible churches. Liverpool is a very walkable city, and exploring the churches can be a great way to stretch your legs while seeing the sights.

One you can’t miss is Church of St Luke. The church built in the 1800s was bombed during World War II but the outer structure still remains — which is why it’s now called the “Bombed Out Church.” You can wander around the property to get better views (and pictures!) of what’s left of the building. Some days you can also pay a small fee to walk around within the church’s shell too.

Another church I recommend checking out is the Liverpool Cathedral. Built in the 20th century and surviving both World Wars, the massive space is something to see.

While donations are encouraged, the church is free to enter. It’s complete with a restaurant, bridge and gift shop—all within the building! Even if you’re not religious, this space is worth checking out for its design and view of the city from atop of one of its towers.

Wander Through Liverpool’s History

While there are plenty of museums to learn about the Beatles’ life and career, there are also some awesome museums on the history of Liverpool itself. Whether you’re looking to learn about art, history or the city’s seafaring heritage, there’s a museum for every interest.

One museum I enjoyed visiting is the Museum of Liverpool. It’s one of the first museums in the U.K. dedicated to the history of a city—which you certainly get to know well after spending a few hours wandering through its rooms.

It’s a fun interactive experience to learn facts about everything from the city’s port to its people. The museum tells a great story of the city I found fascinating. I learned more movies have Liverpool as a backdrop than I would have ever realized!

Take on the Shopping Scene

While Liverpool is a smaller and quieter city than most, there is still plenty of shopping to do. Liverpool One, located near the docks, is a decent sized mall where you can snag some awesome souvenirs — or gifts for yourself! You can also find several restaurants and bars in and around the shopping center to grab a drink or meal.

If you’re like me, you probably have never wondered what more Liverpool has to offer beyond soccer and the Beatles. If you get the chance someday, definitely give yourself the chance to explore British culture through the Liverpool lens!

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Healthy Travel Blog

Posted by Lustige Bilder - December 3, 2017 at 15:22

Categories: Travel   Tags: , , , , , , ,