Ko Lipe, Adang-Rawi, Thailand

Koh Lipe or Ko Lipe is a small island in the Adang-Rawi archipelago of the Andaman Sea, southern Thailand. The Thai name means ‘Paper Island’. The island is located at the border of the Tarutao National Park, to the immediate south of the larger islands Koh Adang and Koh Rawi, 50 km from Koh Tarutao. The original population of the island are the Chao Leh, also called Sea Gypsies who still live on the island. They have dark skin and are very typical. They often live in a rudimentary way in the center of the island. We find three main beaches: Sunset Beach, Sunrise Beach and Pattaya Beach. With its clear and calm water, 25% of species of tropical fish of the world are in the region, there are wide varieties of fish in the coral just meters deep near the beaches. For a long time, only a few adventurous tourists came to the island. Today, tourism is becoming a mass that threatens the area and assumes tourist constructions and projects.

Tips

The island is accessible only by ferry from Langkawi Pulau or Pak Bara. There is no pier so the ferry drops anchor near the beaches and you must reach the coast on foot or by long-tail boat.
On the island there are no cars and the only modes of transport are walking and motorcycle taxi. As the island is small, it is possible to walk around on foot in just over an hour.
If you like scuba diving, there are several sites and dive shops and people that organize boat trips.

The empanadas Pachamama, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

The empanadas Pachamama is a restaurant in the Village, in Montreal, which opened its doors a few months ago, offering as a main menu the ’empanadas’, a typical Argentinian specialty. Pablo, its owner, native of Tucumán, one of the provinces of Argentina, was formed precisely in his hometown, to know all the secrets of the manufacture of empanadas, being empanadas of Tucumán one with the best reputation of the country. The restaurant uses fresh, natural ingredients with no preservatives or artificial colors; oven baking, without frying. At the moment they offer 6 varieties including a menu for vegetarians and there are 2 spicy options. You can combine the empanadas with salads or tasty soups and of course you will be able to taste other Argentinian products such as ‘alfajores’, ‘churros’, ‘facturas’ (pastries) served with coffee, tea, juice or the traditional ‘mate’ (a kind of green tea). You can eat indoors or enjoy the beautiful terrace by bringing your wine. There is also a service to take away the frozen empanadas and they also offer delivery in certain districts. The place is very well decorated with lively colors and the staff is very welcoming.

Tips

If you have an event to celebrate, this is a great place to do it but do not forget to make your reservation, there is room for 40 people inside or 20 on the terrace.

You have boxes of 8 or 12 empanadas and you can choose the confection to your taste.

It is open every day from 11:00 AM.

1371 Rue Sainte-Catherine E, Montréal, QC H2L 2H7

Griffith Observatory, Los Angeles’ Griffith Park, California, USA

Griffith Observatory is in Los Angeles’ Griffith Park, California, sitting on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood. It opened in 1935 with a free admission, according with Griffith’s will because he wanted to make astronomy accessible to the public and it included a planetarium under the large central dome. During World War II the planetarium was used to train pilots in celestial navigation and it was again used for this purpose in the 1960s to train Apollo program astronauts for the first lunar missions. They renovated it in 2002 and it was closes for 4 years. They built an underground expansion too with a café, a gift shop and a theater. One wall inside the building is covered with the largest astronomically accurate image ever constructed “The Big Picture” 150 feet (46 m) by 20 feet (6.1 m) depicting the Virgo Cluster of galaxies; visitors can explore the highly detailed image from within arm’s reach or through telescopes 60 feet (18 m) away. The observatory has six sections: The Wilder Hall of the Eye, the Ahmanson Hall of the Sky, the W.M. Keck Foundation Central Rotunda, the Cosmic Connection, the Gunther Depths of Space Hall, and the Edge of Space Mezzanine and you can see different exhibitions in each part.

Tips

The observatory is closed on Mondays. The entrance is free but you must pay the shows in the planetarium.
There’s a small free parking next to the Observatory, but you can also leave your car along the steep road leading up to the observatory.
You also have a public bus leaving from the Vermont-Sunset Metro station at weekends.
It’s a very good spot to make photos of the Pacific Ocean, the Hollywood Sign and Downtown Los Angeles.