If you’re looking for a voluntourism experience that offers a chance to make a difference in conservation efforts, the Whale Shark & Oceanic Research Center offers a unique opportunity — not to mention the chance to have up-close and personal experiences with these gentle giants of the sea.
Based on Utila, one of Honduras’ Bay Islands, the WSORC monitors and researches whale sharks and is also dedicated to preserving and restoring the extraordinary marine environment around Utila. The warm waters are home to an extensive reef system, and the WSORC is key in working to maintain their integrity. The center often hosts outside researchers, and is a central point for providing environmental data (on the reefs, mangrove forests, fishing stock and, of course, whale sharks) to the Honduran government.
With a one-month commitment, volunteers at the WSORC participate in research dives, help guide excursions, beach and reef clean-ups, educational events and more. As part of the program, you can earn your PADI diving certification (multiple options are available), learn Caribbean reef fish identification, coral reef surveying techniques and work directly on issues related to conservation and eco-tourism. It’s a full-time commitment, but former volunteers attest it is an utterly gratifying one working on issues both local and global. For more information, including dates for volunteer opportunities in 2015, go to www.wsorc.org.
Bleisure — it’s a term we’re all familiar with these days. After all, millennials drive the rising trend, combining business and leisure trips regularly. Take a few days to decompress in a new destination after a hectic schedule of meetings and business.
Just north of Barcelona’s bustling city center, the capital of Catalonia transitions from Gothic cathedrals, tiny alleyways and hordes of bike tours into a more livable neighborhood known as Poble Nou. Close to the coast, Metro-accessible and rife with local hang-out spots, this area has become a favorite of residents who seek solace from the masses of tourists that crowd the center.
Use the summer to catch up on reading that pile of books collecting dust in the corner of your bedroom. Reading is a great pastime for people to enjoy while on vacation. For example, lying out on the beach with a good book will help the hours slip by while the reader is transported to a written world. Everyone has their favorite author or genre, but mystery novels are especially fun to read while relaxing on vacation. A good mystery will get someone’s pulse racing and mind thinking as they try and solve the mystery before the book ends. These mysteries all take place during the summer and are great to enjoy while tanning.
Beyond being a major hub in the global transportation network, Hartsfield-Jackson is also proud to be a major hub for exciting, high-quality retail options through our award-winning concessions program, ATL Skypointe.
Parenting a toddler comes with a forced skillset people learn on the go and then come back with tips and tricks from the battlefield. These sweet, curious little ones are resilient travelers, but also unpredictable. Make the most of your next vacation with a few tips to create a stress-free vacation with toddlers in tow.