What to do on a rainy day in Newcastle

What to do on a rainy day in Newcastle

Exploring a new city is a great way to spend a weekend or short break in the UK, but there’s one thing you always need to be prepared for – rain. Fortunately, since this country is no stranger to wet weather, finding fun things to do in a downpour is never too difficult – especially if Newcastle is your destination.

Below, I’ve listed some ideas of how to spend a rainy day (or several) in the city, while you can find information on hotels in Newcastle here.

The Discovery Museum

One of the best places to go when the heavens open is the Discovery Museum, which is in Blandford Square. This brilliant museum is the ultimate place to learn about all things Newcastle and Tyneside, because its collections focus on a wide array of local technological and scientific discoveries, not to mention the area’s maritime history.

The displays change regularly and are interactive, making it a great place to take the kids, but it’s equally fascinating for adults. Coming here, you can find out all about historical fashions, military history and key technological discoveries, including Joseph Swan’s historic lightbulbs (which you can see a replica of in the museum).

Plus, there are dynamic large-scale displays such as the Turbinia, which was invented in Tyneside and was the very first ship to be powered by a steam turbine. The ship sits in the entrance to the museum, making a huge impact as soon as you walk in.

The Garden Shed

Located in historic stables in Gibside in Gateshead is the Garden Shed – an attraction that’s a little hard to describe. It combines arts and crafts with shopping, giving visitors the opportunity to do everything from meet artists and buy crafts to make things and even get a massage!

It’s open from 11:00 to 15:00 every day, with a number of artists always onsite. Because there’s such a lot to do, it’s great for families, while it’s also suitable for multiple visits across your holiday, simply because you can do something different each time you’re here.

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

And if you like the sound of immersing yourself in art on a rainy day, you should definitely head to the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, which is in a dramatic building on the bank of the River Tyne.

This is no ordinary art gallery. Indeed, it has no permanent collection, instead offering a diverse mix of temporary exhibitions and events. What’s more, it’s the largest gallery of its kind in the world.

Another great thing about it is that it often features exhibitions by artists from the local community, which means that by coming here you can learn more about local art as well as international works.

Blue Reef Aquarium

One of the best things to do if you’re travelling with children, a trip to Blue Reef Aquarium cannot fail to delight parents and kids alike. You’ll find it on Tynemouth’s Grand Parade, where it’s open from 10:00 to 17:00 seven days a week.

Talks and feeding displays take place throughout the day, which gives everyone the chance to learn a bit more about the creatures they see. In the tanks here you’ll come face to face with a great variety of marine life, including playful California sea lions, harbour seals, toothsome black tip reef sharks and adorable otters.

Plus, over in the Amazonian exhibit, you can see monkeys – not your usual aquarium resident! These include the cotton top tamarin, which is a critically endangered species and one children are bound to be enchanted by.

Picking a winner in the Grand National

It’s that time of year when it is time to start thinking about the Grand National. I know that all of us in the UK absolutely love this race and enjoy having a little flutter on it, whether it is one pound or one hundred nearly all of us will try our luck. The Grand National 2015 promises to be a real treat with some fantastic horses vying for favouritism before the off. Some times people choose their horse at random based on it’s name, but personally I think it is a much better idea if you make a more informed decision. We all want to see our horse leading the pack at the final corner don’t we? Here are some great little insider tips that will help you pick the best of the bunch. Good luck!

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Consider the history

It is always a good idea to look at the horses that have run in the previous year’s race. You will be able to see how well they have done and how much they understand the course. The Grand National is one of the toughest races in the world, so picking a horse that has proven it can complete the course is a real bonus. With the high fences and large field you want to make sure that your runner is not going to be overwhelmed by the whole event.

Look out for the form

A very good guide for the horses is how they have performed earlier in the season. By looking at the results of some of the earlier races in the season you will be able to get a good idea of what type of form your horse is in and how they are shaping up for the Grand National. The good thing is that they will usually have run against horses that are also entered into the race, so you can see which horses are leaps and bounds ahead of the competition quite easily!

Keep an eye on the press

In the weeks leading up to the race you will see more and more articles appearing in the national newspapers about horses to watch. You will also notice that there are a lot more jockeys on talk shows than usual, they are on there talking about which horses they think will run well and who they think we should back. That’s expert advice for free on the tv, so don’t switch channel because you never know if they could be giving you the winner!

 

Teeth Whitening in Chicago

Stained and colored teeth are very unattractive and no one wants to be in that position. Dentists have come up with ways of reversing this situation and in fact whitening the teeth. A few years ago this technology hadn’t set in and people with stained teeth had to live with the condition. Thanks to the modern technology which has led to medical advancement which has led to this solution. Today, you can choose from so many different teeth whitening products that are available on the market. Chicago Teeth Whitening experts has made this easy for you. They offer experts advice on both professional as well as home solutions. The number one sure solution is to visit your dentist.

However, many people fear visiting the dentist because of the trauma that develops since childhood. Moreover, quite a significant number of people cannot afford the costs of visiting a dentist. Chicago experts go a step further to offer alternative advice on how people can whiten their teeth. There are some teeth whitening products out there in the market which if used correctly, regularly and consistently can yield great results. The cost of these products is very cheap compared to professional whitening. Most of these products costs less than $30 which most people can afford.

It is however not advisable to use home techniques as there can be some side effects. These chemicals used can react differently to different people and the process might not work very well. A dentist or another health professional will be in apposition to examine you and offer you the best solution which will fit you perfectly. There are some factors such as gun line, cheeks and tongue at play when using home whitening products. Your health is not worth the risk and definitely worth the extra buck.

Chicago Teeth Whitening experts ensure that they offer the best services possible and at the most affordable costs. After whitening your teeth, they also offer corrective treatment which ensures that damages to the teeth exterior and cracks are repaired restoring the teeth to their natural condition. The process ensures that you get your smile back and restore your self-confidence as well.

Ideas for your Childs Summer Vacation

Another school year is rounding up and it’s time to start thinking about what to do and where to go this summer with your children. It can be a stressful time, the children have lots of time to occupy and we as parents still need to keep working and going about our regular schedule. It’s a lot of pressure on parents. We want our children to be looked after and not spending their entire vacation in front of a TV or video game screen.

 

If you are looking for a list of options that will keep your child busy, entertained, learning and active this summer keep reading to find out how.

 

Tutor

The summer break is a long one and often students get back into school in the fall and spend a good portion of first month relearning things they learnt last year. Now is the perfect time to capitalize on maintaining what they have studied so far and to pick up the slack on subjects they were struggling in. Finding a tutor can be a great way to keep your child on the straight and narrow. Tutoring doesn’t just have to be academics either. Consider hiring a tutor to teach your young one how to play an instrument or learn a language. One on one learning time with a tutor is an excellent way for your child to learn, and interact this summer.

 

Summer Camp

It’s important for children to be active and outdoors. At summer camp a child learns a lot about friendships, social skills and discover a lot about themselves. Placing your boy or girl in a summer camp is a fun for them and convenient for you. Summer camps can be focused on an interest such as sports, music, religion or academics. Speak with your children and discuss the prospect of learning a skill while making friends and doing some fun activities.

 

Sports or Leagues

The summer is a perfect for experimenting with new sports and hobbies. Your child may discover something they are brilliant at. Just like summer camps, friendship and teamwork skills will be developed when your child plays sports. It doesn’t have to be competitive, just something to get them out of their comfort zone and experience new activities. Perhaps your child isn’t very physically active, there or many leagues like chess or art or science clubs that children can participate in.

 

Taking photos like a pro

What does it take to become a good professional landscape photographer? Well there are many qualities needed, for example one needs to be fit both physically and mentally. Imagine the shot you are longing to capture is up on a mountain or hill which requires you to continue on foot when no other form of transport is of any use You have to be able to trudge on wearing warm heavy clothing whilst lugging weighty expensive equipment, this takes strength and stamina, therefore fitness is a number one requirement.

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Taking hundreds of shots of your subject is not necessarily the right way to find your ultimate composition, whereas if you make only a few but selective shots that you feel satisfied with, you come to realise that patience leads to quality and that is the order of the day.

The weather plays a pivotal role in your work and as everyone knows it has a habit of instantly changing it’s mind. To the photographer this can be a Godsend or a nightmare therefore one must go properly equipped to deal with these vagaries that nature will throw at you. Warm clothing and suitable protection for your expensive camera equipment are so important along with everything a survival kit comes with. By ensuring this the photographer will remain confident, safe and retain motivation.

If you want to capture a sunset for example arrive early and scout the area out arund your location selecting the optimum vantage points. It is silly to arrive with only minutes to go and then realise that the best shot would have been achieved on the other side of the of the valley. As well as getting there early it is well to remember it pays to stay a little later as you never know what might occur. Avoid staying in one spot at your location, move around the area and make full use of the changing mood and light of your subject.

Make sure the equipment is of the best standard, one of the most important pieces is a good quality tripod, essential on varying terrain and leaving you hands free. Find out what other colleagues use in their work and view the results on line. If you are impressed with the results then maybe this model of camera or another may well be suitable for you and your aspirations. Again the lenses you choose will dictate what type of shot you wish to make depending on the time of the day, do I use a filter for this or that subject. It’s a matter of finding out what the really good practitioners are using to make their mark on professional landscape photography.

There are many professionals that are easy to find on line who are are willing to share their trade secrets from the written page or more excitingly on photo workshops all over the world in stunning locations. There you can gain some real hands on, invaluable practical experience. So whether it be abroad or at home, just click on and the world is truly your oyster.

 

How to Organize Your Life, and Keep It That Way!

 

The kids need to get new shoes for school. The car needs a service. The kitchen tap is broken and you forgot when the plumber is coming to fix it! Does this sound like you? With so many things happening in your daily lives it can be hard to keep up with what you’re doing and what needs to be done. If you’re looking for a reprieve, you’ve come to the right place!

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Get Online!

One of the best and most convenient ways to get your life organized is to take it online – and not the social media kind of online. If your struggle is more around what you need to get from the store, or what your kids’ school supply requirements were, signup for an online note taking service that can let you take notes and access them anywhere you are. One of the great advantages of these services is that you can add notes on the fly – say for example you’re at your child’s dance class and the teacher reminds you to get a ‘pink, size 5 pair of ballet shoes with a green flower on them’. You can quickly add this very specific item to your list right there and then and check it off your digital list when you’re at the mall.

Have the Work Done for You

Having trouble getting to the grocery store or find that you’re constantly getting home and realizing you forget some vital items? You’re not alone. Look for a reputable service such as Peapod that can do the hard work for you and take your grocery order online via your smart phone and have it ready to be picked up without you having to leave your car! These are the kinds of services that can speed up your daily errands.

Assign Your Tasks

You may have heard the word ‘delegate’ thrown around in an office, but that doesn’t mean it can’t apply to your life. If your kids have an important date coming up or a special requirement before class, put them in charge of it. Take some time to show them how you yourself manage their daily tasks and give them the opportunity to do it for themselves. Not only is this a great learning experience for them, it’s one less item that you have to think about as you rush around.

With just these three great tips you will be well on your way to reducing stress and ensuring your daily life runs a little smoother. Remember, they only work if you stick with them, so don’t be afraid to really give them a try and see how beneficial they can be.

 

Buying baby gifts made easy

Buying a gift for the baby of a friend or your family can sometimes be a tricky task. You want to make sure that the gift you buy is appreciated by the parents and also something that is not just going to be thrown in to a cupboard and forgotten about.

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To help you through the minefield of buying the ideal baby gift we have drawn up a list of 5 essential tips that you should follow. Take them in because they’re going to make your life a lot easier in the future. Do you have any great tips that you’d like to share with everyone? Or any experiences you think can help? All you have to do is pop your thoughts down in the comments section below this article, I can’t wait to read them.

Is the present practical, sentimental or for the future?

This is a very big question that you need to ask yourself; do you want a present that is practical, a present that will be used for a long time or maybe you would prefer to buy something like an ornament with sentimental value.

Practical – clothing, blankets, nappies or baby blankets.

Long-term – toys, books, baby photo albums.

Sentimental – engraved gifts, rattles and keepsakes.

Picking the right size

When you’re buying clothes for a baby the best idea is to pick the size 0-3 months and upwards. Don’t worry if the baby is newly born because in the first few months babies grow rapidly, buying new born sizes is just a waste when buying a present because after a few months they will no longer be of use. The best materials to look out for are organic cotton and wool.

Don’t forget mum

Of course becoming a mother is a big gift within itself, but you shouldn’t forget mum when buying baby gifts. It’s always a nice little touch to buy something special. Some great ideas include; massage vouchers, a weekend away, candles or a big hamper full of goodies for both mum and baby.

If you are looking to not break the bank on gifts then always keep your eye out for bargains or groupon vouchers that will help you get some amazing deals!

Athletics Shoes Explained

We all like to stay active or have made plans to get fit in the new year as part of our many resolutions. One thing that is important, no matter what your goal, is to make sure that you have right type of athletic shoes on your feet when your exercising. So it is important that you pick a pair of shoes that match your routine and also your body.

Before you make a start you should set yourself a budget, be lenient because you might find that the perfect shoe for you are a little over budget. If they will improve your performance and make the experience better then they are certainly worth the investment. My advice would be to look for special offers or do as I do and check out what great discounts with groupon you can find.

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Running Shoes or Cross-Trainers?

If your main reason for buying a pair of athletic shoes is because you jog or walk regularly then running shoes are the way to go. This is simply because they have been specifically designed for the heel-to-toe motion. I would almost certainly chose this toe of shoe per walking shoes because running shoes have been designed for a far wider range of foot type and they are also built to last much longer. Cross trainers are for you if your regular routine includes activities such as aerobics, kick boxing or weight lifting – really any activity that is perfumed on a tough surface where you will be moving from side to side.

What type of foot do you have?

There are many different designs of athletic shoes which cater for varying types of feet. They have been specifically designed to lessen the impact that your feet take so that it prevents injury and also improves performance. You should really get an expert to take a look at your feet to let you know what type of feet you have. But here’s a little guide if you want to do it yourself, you will have to look at the soles of a pair of worn shoes to tell.

– Top Outer Edge Worn – This means you’re a supinator, and supinators’ tend to have feet with high arches that will roll in an outward direction. To compensate for this you will need trainers that have cushioning which will absorb the shock.

– Evenly Worn – This means your feet are neutral and you plant your feet with an equal weight distribution. The ideal trainers for you will be ones labelled stability or moderate stability, which will give you an even balance between support and cushioning.

– Top Inner Edge Worn – You are what is known as a pronator, this means that your feet will always roll in an inward direction. Pronators’ feet commonly have either flat arches or low arches. The perfect trainers for  you will be the motion-control or high stability designs, they will make sure that you feet stay in a better position to be aligned with your legs.

Why I love the internet

I don’t know exactly what I would do without the internet these days. Well for starters I wouldn’t be able to post this article online waxing lyrical about how amazing it is. It’s how I earn a living and travel the world, but that’s not the only reason why it’s the best thing since sliced bread.

It has made our lives a lot easier in so many ways. I accept that it might have made a lot of us a bit less sociable but the benefits certainly outweigh the negatives.

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Earning Money Online

I am fortunate enough to be able to make a living online and travel at the same time. The internet allows be to be a digital nomad, so I can be anywhere in the world but still work. That is of course if there’s a stable internet connection, which I am sure we all know can be the most frustrating thing at times. It has also allowed a whole host of people to be free to live and work where they want. Going a step further, it has led to some of the most successful ideas earning big bucks for people.

Staying in touch

With out the internet, we would all struggle to stay in contact with people as much as we do. It’s even more important when we travel. Being able to call friends and family for free, upload pictures so that they can see where I am and also post stories on my blog, are all ways of how I can stay in touch with everyone. The good old postcard is still utilised from time to time, but I know my mum is always happy with the email every other day to let her know everything is ok. When I have kids the internet will be my saviour, I can’t imagine how worried parents were before the internet was invented and their kids went off to travel the world!

Being able to buy anything

We don’t have to trek around stores anymore looking for that one item that seems impossible to find. Now with online shopping becoming bigger and bigger we are able to find anything we want, what’s better is that we can pretty much get it shipped to wherever we want as well. The prices are also crazy online! Groupon vouchers are a great example of that, I am able to to order new clothes whilst on the road at knock down rate and have them delivered to the next hotel I’ll be staying at.

So, thank you internet for making work, travel and leisure so much easier for all of us!

Essential Travel Tips for Dubai

Dubai is absolutely amazing and possibly my favourite city in the world. After being there on more than one occasion, I’ve found out some great tips that will help you spend quality time in the dazzling city.

 

My first piece of advice is to Fly Emirates  since it is the best airline in the world. The service is second to none and I don’t think I’ve ever faced a single delay. Dubai is all about living in luxury and experiencing the perfect holiday, so you need to make sure your holiday gets off to the best start possible.

 

Dubai is situated on the edge of a desert so it can sometimes be tempting just to stay inside your resort and live it up there for your holiday. But we all know your holiday will be a million times better if you decide to venture out of the hotel and leave the poolside for a day or two.

 

Here are some of my top tips for anyone out there planning on visiting Dubai:

 

  • The best time of the year to visit is between the months of November and April. The reason for this is because the weather is much more pleasant at this time, below 30 degree Celsius. With this great weather, Dubai is livelier than during the scorching summers. During summers, temperatures can rise all the way up to nearly 50 degrees.
  • Ramadan is a great time to visit Dubai because it is just so fascinating and you really get to embrace the culture of Islam. I love experiencing Ramadan. Of course, if you want to indulge yourself in the nightlife and bars then it is definitely not the time for you to visit because certain laws are imposed during Ramadan.
  • If you’re interested in sports and activities, then Dubai has a lot for you to enjoy. The highlight of the sports and activities calendar has to be the Dubai Rugby Sevens when the best teams in the world gather to compete. It also means that the city is full of rugby fans.

 

If you’ve been lucky enough to visit Dubai then it would be a great idea if you share your tips and tricks with the rest of us.