Bilbao, Biscay, Spain

Bilbao is the capital of the province of Biscay and the comarca of the Greater Bilbao located at the estuary of the river Nervion, in the north of Spain. This is a city that has gone through a lot of development, being other times a harbor and industrial city, with a lot of pollution. Today is a city considered as an example for several other cities that would like to change their urban planning problems. The urbanized part of the city is limited by two small mountains; Pagasarri to the south and Artxanda to the north. The old town has a medieval and Renaissance style, with seven streets leading to the Market Square of La Ribera. To see: the Cathedral of Santiago (14th and 15th century), the Basilica of Begonia (1620), the Convent of the Incarnation, the Academy of the Basque Language, the Guggenheim Museum, the Arriaga Theater (1890), the Town Hall (1892), among others.

Tips

The best time to visit the city and find it full of activities is during the celebration of the Great Week that takes place for 9 days and 8 nights, starting on the first Saturday after August, 15th. Spectacles of street, fairs, concerts, everything is there for the occasion. To get around the city by public transport, get the Creditrans which is a standardized pass that allows you to travel through the different fare zones. To get a nice view of the city, take the funicular that will take you to the mountain of Artxanda where you will also find a park. There are also two metro lines and a tram with which you can reach the Guggenheim Museum.

Sucrerie de la Montagne (Sugar shack), Rigaud, Quebec, Canada

If you want to find a sugar shack open year round, where the owners have the pleasure of welcoming tourists from around the world, please, this place is the Sucrerie de la Montagne in Rigaud. M Pierre Faucher and his son Stefan will be delighted to meet you and tell you the passion they have for this fantastic natural site, this sugar bush of 120 acres offers you the opportunity to know the history and culture of Quebec and Canadian ancestry. The place is in a century-old maple forest. The visit gets you back in the past and you can be part of the history of an era. The current site is like a village of yesteryear with the sugar shack, the bakery, cottages, trails in the forest and it continues to grow while respecting the nature and tradition of yesteryear. You can simply visit it but you can not leave without tasting its homemade dishes, maple syrup, bread made on site, their delicious sugar pie and much more. It is the ideal place to visit with family, friends, to mix with the tourists who appreciate our traditions, in short, you will feel that you will return soon even before you left …

Tips

You can spend a few days in the cottages that can accommodate between 3 and 6 people, celebrate your birthday, your wedding, make business meetings, making your reservation by phone or email. Children under 5 years are free.

There are several trails to walk a few kilometers in the forest.

You have a gift shop where you can purchase the book by Pierre Faucher (owner): Chronicle of a rooted life.

Check on their website the menu and activities of Christmas Season to have a good time with the family or firends.

 

Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand

Ko Pha Ngan or Koh Phangan is an island in the Gulf of Thailand, located in the south-east of Thailand, just north of Ko Samui. It belongs to the province of Surat Thani. The island is a tourist destination known for its beaches and for the Full Moon Party, party grouping a musical mix that takes place on the beach of Haad Rin, southeast of the island, every month with the full moon. Now the island is primarily a tourist destination but fishing and coconut are important for the local economy. Due to its topography, population lives in coastal and mountainous interior is almost inaccessible. More than half of the island is part of a national park and the island has more than 80 km2 of virgin rainforest with a wide variety of flora and fauna. It is also considered a spiritual place with several Buddhist temples with industry for retirement and meditation booming.

Tips

The most convenient way to move around is the scooter, especially if one wants to visit non-tourist areas of the island. The island has many beautiful beaches of white sand along its coastline, some of which are still accessible only by boat.
December to February is the ideal time to visit the island, sunny but not too hot with little chance of rain.
Whatever you are looking for, you’ll have no trouble finding it in Thong Sala and Haad Rin shops, or the recently opened stores along the main road.