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San Francisco

Five 2019 Christmas Festivals You Won’t Want to Miss

By Bus Travel, California, Chicago, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, San Francisco

Five 2019 Christmas Festivals You Won’t Want to Miss

The holiday season is quickly approaching, and with it, the excitement for brilliantly bright lights, festive treats, and fun parties. Yet, for serious fanatics of the holiday season, there’s nothing quite as inspiring as a festival. If you fall into that category, don’t fret! There are a few 2019 Christmas festivals that take their celebrations above and beyond just waiting for your visit.

Christkindlmarket – Chicago

From St. Patrick’s Day to New Year’s, the Windy City knows how to celebrate, and Christmas isn’t an exception. Since 1996, Chicago has held an epic open-air holiday market known as Christkindlmarket, which attracts over one million visitors annually. The festival begins the Friday before Thanksgiving and ends on Christmas Eve, coinciding with the city’s Magnificent Mile Lights Festival.

Regardless of the weather, the German-inspired event creates a magical atmosphere in Daley Plaza with free admission. The warmly lit market features handmade gifts, holiday-inspired decor, and plenty of food and drinks, including German potato pancakes and sauerkraut. There’s also a Kinder Club available, which offers fun events like scavenger hunts and passports for younger market-goers.

A Colonial Christmas – Jamestown, Virginia

If you want to enjoy the holiday festivities with a historical twist, then head to the Jamestown Settlement in Virginia. The living history museum provides insight into the traditions of the English colony, as well as those of the Powhatan Indian tribe. Running from December 20th to the 31st, there are daily demonstrations, live music, and performances from the Lord of Misrule.

The celebration extends to the American Revolution Museum in nearby Yorktown. Instead of a recreated fort, the museum is based on a working colonial farm with a Continental Army encampment. During the Christmas festival, visitors get a glimpse of authentic holiday traditions in the 18th century, as well as military demonstrations. You can visit the events separately or purchase a combination ticket at a reduced rate.

Historic Philadelphia Franklin Square Holiday Festival

At Philadelphia’s Holiday Festival, the city looks to both the past and the future by lighting up the night. The family-friendly event features over 75,000 lights strewn throughout Franklin Square park. The festival pays homage to Ben Franklin with its Electrical Spectacle light show, which features a 12-foot-tall lighted kite and lighting choreographed to music. The light show takes place nightly from the middle of November to New Year’s Eve, with vendors on-site throughout the duration.

Great Dickens Christmas Fair – San Francisco

For literary lovers, there’s not a better 2019 Christmas Festival than the Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco. This Bay Area tradition takes place at the Cow Palace for five weekends in a row, from November 23rd to December 22nd. Not only does the festival pay homage to Charles Dickens’ _A Christmas Carol_, but it brings the beloved novel to life.

Set in Victorian times, the fair transforms the Cow Palace into the streets of London circa the 1850s. There are merchants, dance floors, music halls, and pubs scattered over 120,000 sq. ft. of space. Not only are you able to mingle with hundreds of dedicated actors, but you’re also encouraged to dress up and play the part yourself. Grab a freshly made croissant, hit the dance floor with a waltz, and wind down with a saloon performance before doing it all over again the next day.

Winterfest – Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

If you want to see Santa playing the banjo, then head straight to Pigeon Forge, TN. The city’s Winterfest event is one of the longest-running Christmas festivals of the year, beginning on November 22nd and stretching through February 17th. Surrounded by the Smoky Mountains, this hospitable town is transformed with over five million twinkling lights, holiday-themed displays, and family-friendly activities and entertainment occurring regularly.

To take in the spectacular lighting displays of Winterfest, head down Pigeon Forge Parkway for the Tour of Lights, followed by a dinner show at Dolly Parton’s Stampede. Or, stop by the Smoky Mountain Opry for an unforgettable Christmas presentation. There’s also the annual tree lighting at The Island, which features over 40,000 ornaments, along with local music performances at the Community Celebration on December 5th. Regardless of when your trip is scheduled, you’re sure to find a special event that suits your needs.

Save on Travel to Your 2019 Christmas Festival of Choice

Ready for an epic holiday celebration? Save on your 2019 Christmas festival travel with BusTickets.com. Our service allows you to quickly and conveniently find bus routes, compare carrier prices, and book your trip all within minutes. Holiday cheer is in the air, so what are you waiting for? Grab your favorite ugly Christmas sweater and buy your bus tickets from BusTickets.com today!

References

http://www.christkindlmarket.com/
https://www.historyisfun.org/jamestown-settlement/a-colonial-christmas/
https://www.historyisfun.org/yorktown-victory-center/
http://historicphiladelphia.org/franklin-square/upcoming-events/
https://dickensfair.com/
https://pigeonforgewinterfest.com/

top us yoga resorts

Top US Destinations for a Yoga Retreat

By Arizona, Bus Travel, California, San Francisco, Sedona

Top Destinations for a Yoga Retreat

Sometimes a good old-fashioned vacation just isn’t going to cut it. Sometimes it needs to be a vacation devoted entirely to practicing one of the most relaxing forms of physical, emotional, and spiritual exercise: yoga. If you’ve been planning on going to a yoga retreat, whether it’s your first or your 15th, we’ve come up with a list of some of the top yoga retreats in the country. In this post, we’ve pinpointed five states to check out the top yoga retreat destinations.

Arizona

The retreats at the Sedona Ranch Retreat in Arizona are unique in that they encompass multiple areas of wellness, self-discovery, and spiritual healing. You can opt for their traditional retreat where the itinerary is all planned out, or you can build your own custom retreat! With their Holistic Health Retreat, you can stay on the ranch for a three- or four-day period. During that time, all lodging and meals are provided while you engage in a variety of health and wellness activities including acupuncture, reiki, meditation, life coaching, and of course, yoga (acu-yoga to be more specific). The retreats at the Sedona Ranch are also unique in that the yoga programs accommodate yoga practitioners of all levels, whether your first yoga class is at the ranch or you’re an experienced yogini with aspirations of becoming an instructor.

During the retreat, you are also invited to explore the natural beauty that surrounds the ranch both on horseback and on an ATV. If you decide you’d like to plan your own retreat, you can do that through the Build Your Own Retreat program. With this option, you can choose to do as many or as few activities as you’d like. Just a few examples of the activities offered include meridian massage, lifeline healing, a guided hike of Shaman’s cave, soul coaching, and meridian yoga.

Sedona is well know for it’s energy vortexes where you can feel the earths healing energy in your body. The area has many energy healers and energy healing options for those wanting to heal past trauma or manifest positive outcomes. Venture outside of the ranch to feed your soul with art and music in the Tlaquepaque Arts District. Artist from all over the world exhibit in the galleries and restaurants in this area. Get to know the Sedona locals and enjoy a fresh brunch, crepes, pastries and coffee at the Pump House Station, Urban Eatery and Market overlooking the main creek. Your mind body and soul will feel refreshed after your visit to Sedona.

California

If you ever find yourself on the west coast of the United States (more specifically about 120 miles outside of San Francisco) and in need of a spiritually rejuvenating retreat, book a spot at the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm in California. This top yoga retreat destination accommodates yoga practitioners of all levels, from yogis who need an intensive yoga vacation to practitioners who are interested in participating in the study program (program durations run anywhere from one month to three months) to obtain their yoga instructor certification. A typical day on the farm goes something like this: early morning meditations and a two-hour yoga class followed by an organic vegetarian lunch at 10 a.m. Afterward, guests can look forward to an afternoon of yoga followed by a hearty vegetarian dinner at 6 p.m. Other programs offered during each retreat include lectures, chants, meditations, and walks.

New York

Sivananda Yoga Ranch in upstate New York (not to be mistaken with Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm on the other side of the country), is located 100 miles outside of New York City, in a serene environment totally unlike the Big Apple. If you just need a quickie retreat, the ranch offers visitors two- and three-day-long yoga retreats that focus on various yoga classes, meditation, breathing, and holistic wellness. If you are interested in something more intensive, this top yoga retreat destination routinely offers month-long training programs for yogis pursuing instructor certification. While staying on the ranch, you have the option of staying in a shared room or in a private room on your own while getting three delicious and organic square meals a day.

Colorado

Loveland Community Yoga in Colorado covers all fronts of wellness (and even a bit of luxury). This yoga retreat focuses on three types of yoga: Nidra, Restorative, and Vinyasa. In addition to daily yoga classes, retreat activities include workshops, guided hikes, walking meditation, and (the best part) access to the sauna and hot mineral springs. During your stay, you can book private accommodations or opt to stay in a dorm-style room. Throughout the retreat, you and your fellow yoginis will be fed organic, locally sourced produce for each meal of the day.

Montana

Situated beneath Rock Mountain in Whitefish, Montana, is the Shivatree Yoga School (which just so happens to also be a stunning 300-acre ranch). During your stay at this yoga school, the Ayurveda specialist and owner, Amanda, will guide you in your spiritual growth through the practice of yoga. You’ll have plenty of time to spend on your own and explore the beautiful nature surrounding you, including walking through the ranch’s stunning pine forest and going on a guided tour of Glacier National Park. The rest of the time will be spent studying yoga and practicing your asanas on a daily basis with the rest of your yogini peers.

Visit These Top Yoga Retreat Destinations

Ready to start planning a trip to one of these top yoga retreat destinations? Buy your ticket on the BusTickets.com website today.

References

http://www.sedonaranch.org/index.html
https://sivanandayogafarm.org/

high tea 101

High Tea 101: The Best Places to Go for an Authentic Experience

By Boston, Bus Travel, California, Massachusetts, New York, New York City, San Francisco, Washington D.C

High Tea 101: The Best Places to Go for an Authentic Experience

You don’t have to be English royalty to enjoy high tea. Although it has its roots in 19th-century nobility, afternoon tea, as it’s sometimes known, is a tradition that extends beyond the castle walls. Despite its ties to earls and duchesses of the past, it’s very much a habit that modern-day tea enthusiasts enjoy all the time — usually in the comfort of their own home, with a cookie on the side. That isn’t _quite_ in the same vein as old-world customs, but there _are_ ways you can embrace a more royal way of sipping your cuppa. Just call it high tea 101. Here’s where to book your bus adventure so that you can enjoy an authentic experience.

New York City, NY

You’ll feel like you’re in another world when you step into the Baccarat Hotel in Midtown Manhattan. The luxurious five-star property offers an afternoon tea service that is almost absurdly upscale. (In other words, dress your best!) The hotel dazzles at first sight, and the ambiance is unforgettable, offering a polished take on contemporary style complete with warm lighting, plush chairs, and dramatic tablescapes. This alone would be worth a five-star review in its own right, but you’re not studying high tea 101 for the décor! The menu offers a variety of services, of which the most noteworthy by far is Tsar Nicholas II. The setup for two includes bespoke tea blends, plus something considerably unexpected: 28 grams of Grandeur Gold caviar and a spread of accompaniments, including red onions, chives, toast points, and egg yolks. Lavender shortbreads are also provided to tempt your sweet tooth, and the service includes a bottle of champagne. You can opt-out of that, if you wish, and slash the price considerably. If you favor a more traditional tea, the hotel offers several worthy alternatives, each with mouthwatering additions like raspberry macarons, honey lavender cake, and pistachio baklava.

Boston, MA

While you might expect memorable tea at high-end hotels, it’s worth considering restaurants in big cities, too. That’s especially true in Boston, where Rowes Wharf Sea Grille makes a masterpiece of its afternoon service. The eatery provides sublime views of Boston Harbor, allowing you to reflect in peace as you sip from their vast and varied selection of delicious teas. Guests can select from different types of black, green, oolong, white, rooibos, and herbal blends, and all include a selection of delicious petit sandwiches (including the unforgettable golden potato and egg salad on challah), along with buttery, flaky pastries like lemon drop cookies, vanilla bean and black currant scones, and blueberry-orange crumb cake. The afternoon menu also includes a variety of artisanal cocktails and wines to complement the occasion.

Washington, DC

Locals swear by Lady Camellia, a Victorian-style tea room that commits to providing its patrons with the complete high tea experience — minus the lavish matching price tag. Situated in a historic neighborhood in Georgetown, it boasts a lime green exterior and is both quaint and inviting at a glance. Step inside and you’ll find yourself immersed in old-world bliss: there’s warm ivory and pink wallpaper, brass photo frames, an elaborately aged fireplace, and small trinkets and figurines that set a soothing, mellow tone. It’s all in keeping with the menu, which is filled with excellent options to please any palate. The original High Tea includes a single pot, plus your choice of two scones or croissants, four pastries, and an English pie. If you’re traveling with children under 10 years old, bear in mind they offer kid-friendly services, too, with treats like grilled cheese sandwiches, orange juice, and PB&J.

Chicago, IL

The Langham is one of the finest hotels in Chicago. Bright, airy, and modern, it’s situated in a prime spot downtown. That’s key when you’re sipping tea in their lounge, Pavilion. The signature service is in keeping with a tradition that first started in the London location of the Langham in 1865. You’ll feel as good as regal as you sip your tea in high style, all while gazing at sweeping views of the city. Menus change from season to season, and all are built around appetizing ingredients that fill hearty mini sandwiches, buttery scones, and irresistible pastries that balance their broad selection of teas. Several blends are exclusive to the hotel, among the most beloved of which are the Silk Road white tea and the relaxing English Flower chamomile tea. Champagne and sparkling wine are also available.

San Francisco, CA

It’s basic high tea 101: always seek memorable destinations for your tea fix. If you happen to be in San Francisco, you’ll find almost no location more appealing and welcoming than the Japanese Tea Garden at Golden Gate Park. Upon setting foot on the grounds, you’ll understand immediately why it’s such a special place. Fragrant, shapely trees and beautifully manicured gardens add to the ambiance. One of the main highlights is the Monterey Pine, which was originally situated along the park’s waterfront, along with an immaculately trimmed hedge in the silhouette of Mt. Fuji. Guests enjoy everything from traditional Japanese cookies to classic tea sandwiches, along with standouts like green tea cheesecake, arare rice crackers, and even sushi rolls if you’re so inclined.

High Tea 101: Book Your Bus Trip Today

Is your mouth watering yet? Head straight for BusTickets.com to book affordable tickets for everyone in your family, then pamper yourself with some indulgent high tea — and make memories you’ll treasure for a lifetime.

References

https://www.baccarathotels.com/dining/afternoon-tea

https://www.roweswharfseagrille.com/explore

http://www.ladycamellia.com/

http://www.langhamhotels.com/en/the-langham/chicago/dining/afternoon-tea-with-wedgwood/

https://www.japaneseteagardensf.com/tea-house

There are so many beautiful places to visit during your fall vacatinon. You won't be dissapointed.

5 Last-Minute Fall Vacation Destinations

By Bus Travel, California, Kentucky, Louisville, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Virgina Beach, Virginia

Traveling at any time of the year has its advantages, but fall is an especially wonderful period to get away from it all. If you can carve out some quality me-time at the last minute, you may want to explore a city you’ve never visited — or a place you treasure and have been aching to see again. These last-minute fall vacation destinations will have you reaching for your suitcase right away!

1. Santa Barbara, CA

Even if your time in Santa Barbara, CA, is limited, you’ll find that there’s plenty to squeeze into the journey. The city, fondly known as the American Riviera, is simply a postcard come to life. Not only is the weather beautiful nearly year-round, but there are stunning beaches everywhere and mesmerizing architecture for history buffs to explore. The beauty of arriving during fall is that you won’t have to deal with the inevitable summer crowds — and more importantly, you’ll be privy to that gorgeous foliage that colors the city in a radiant palette of golds, greens, and reds.

2. Louisville, KY

Louisville is known for plenty: baseball, bourbon, and horses are just a few of its standout features. But there’s so much more to this quaint Kentucky city than meets the eye, and booking a trip to this last-minute fall vacation destination is the perfect way to experience it. Likely the best way for nature lovers to enjoy their surroundings is to go for a hike in one of the city’s many parks. Don’t miss some of the city’s major festivals that occur during autumn, including the beloved NuLu Fest in September. Featuring beer, shopping, food, and fun activities, it’s a free one-day event that will appeal to the entire family.

3. San Francisco, CA

Indian summer in San Francisco, CA, is not to be missed — especially if you want to escape the cool air in your own town. But it’s more than just the great weather that will appeal to you. Fall is also when the streets come alive in this vibrant city. The completely free Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival is held every year during the first weekend in October in Golden State Park. The Treasure Island Music Festival, also in October, is another worthwhile reason to visit: it packs countless musical, art, and comedic festivities into two days. You can also indulge your love for fresh fruits and vegetables at one of the city’s many farmers’ markets — fall is the perfect time of year to snag everything from winter squash to eggplant.

4. Virginia Beach, VA

The beach — in the fall? It’s still a great time of year to go, especially if you’re headed to Virginia Beach, VA. The weather is pleasant, the breeze is light, and the conditions are just right for the kick-off to fall: the annual Neptune Festival, held on the boardwalk annually. Enjoy everything from wine tastings to free concerts! If you happen to be in the area on Halloween, a visit to the notorious Nightmare Mansion on Atlantic Avenue will send chills down your spine. It’s been around for years, and it never fails to entertain — or terrorize. Rooms are considerably lower priced at this time of year, too, so now may be the time to snag that VIP suite overlooking the ocean.

5. Savannah, GA

Oppressive heat, begone! Although Savannah, GA, can be a beast during summer, it’s wonderfully pleasant and comfortable when autumn rolls around. The weather is essentially a welcome mat for you to go outside and play. You’re welcome to enjoy a walking tour of the city’s most haunted homes and buildings, or rent a bike and explore the city on your own. Savannah is also renowned for its fantastic fall festivals. There’s the annual Savannah Jazz Festival in Forsyth Park, lively Oktoberfest on River Street, and the Savannah Film Festival hosted by the Savannah College of Art and Design. What better way to make the most of your time there — and meet a few locals, too?

Book Your Quick Fall Getaway Today

If you’re ready to book a trip to one of these last-minute fall vacation destinations, don’t delay. This is a great time to snap up rooms at a discount and start planning an itinerary for an unforgettable trip! Visit BusTickets.com to get started.

References

https://nulubusinessassocation.wildapricot.org/page-18162

http://www.hardlystrictlybluegrass.com/2019/info/

https://www.neptunefestival.com/

http://www.youwillscream.com/

https://www.visitsavannah.com/article/top-fall-events-to-attend-savannah

The best bakeries in the U.S are filled with yummy goodies and treats.

5 Top Bakeries to Visit During Your Vacation

By Bus Travel, California, Charleston, Massachusetts, San Francisco, South Carolina, Texas

You’re on vacation and your sweet tooth is out of control. There are the usual fast-food haunts nearby, but you’re craving something with more local flavor. If that’s your situation, you need to familiarize yourself with some of the top bakeries in the U.S. — stat. Once you’ve booked your trip, prepare to indulge in a few truly indulgent treats.

1. San Antonio, TX

Founded by Elizabeth Chambers and her husband, Armie Hammer, in 2012, BIRD bakery in San Antonio caters to the crowd who craves something that tastes homemade. Each item is prepared from scratch every single day, made with only the highest quality ingredients. The staff donates anything left at the end of the day to local philanthropic organizations and nonprofits, then begins the process all over again the next day. In other words, everything that you order is always fresh! They’re locally renowned for their amazing pies — honey cheesecake, spiced buttermilk, and rustic apple are just a few of the highlights. They also offer an extensive menu of cookies, brownies, bars, and custom-made cakes.

2. Boston, MA

When in Boston, head straight for Mike’s Pastry. An area institution since 1946, it was founded by Michael Mercogliano and remains a family business currently run by his stepson, Angelo Papa. Here, tradition and quality go hand in hand. Locals know the establishment for its mouthwatering cannoli, but there are plenty of other delicious delicacies on the menu. The beloved cookie tray contains a whopping three pounds of classic Italian-style butter cookies and macaroons, while the ricotta pie follows a traditional recipe and yields an amazing flavor with a smooth texture.

3. Portland, OR

Portland has countless bakeries, and it’s tough to pick just one from the bunch. But the Helen Bernhard Bakery, which opened in 1924, earns decades’ worth of accolades for a reason. What began as a humble, family-owned business to earn a few extra dollars on the side quickly blossomed into a bustling bakery. The menu is full of every type of treat imaginable, from cake pops and bonbons to lemon bars and ladyfingers. They’re known locally for their special-order wedding cakes and Barbie cakes, all of which are ornately designed with great attention to detail.

4. Charleston, SC

Cupcake DownSouth consistently earns rave reviews for its eclectic menu of fresh cupcakes. The establishment offers over 50 flavors a year and carries far more than just the standard selection. Each treat is made with the freshest ingredients, including sweet cream butter and chocolate. If you can’t get enough of everything cupcake, then you may want to visit Charleston specifically for this bakery. Their Cake Shakes are a blend of your favorite cupcake with soft-serve vanilla ice cream, topped with whipped cream and your toppings of choice. Yes, it’s crazily indulgent — but that’s what vacations are for, after all.

5. San Francisco, CA

Not all bakeries are all about dessert. If you want to indulge in a completely delicious meal while you’re in San Francisco, head to Boudin Bakery. It’s got a storied history — Isidore Boudin developed her classic San Francisco Sourdough™ bread in 1849! — and an incredible menu to match. You can fill up on all the sourdough your heart desires, whether you’re craving a bread bowl filled with chili or a hearty grilled cheese sandwich or even a sourdough pizza. Finish it all off with a gooey fudge brownie, a thick Royale cookie (macadamia nuts, chocolate chips, and fresh coconut), or a chewy snickerdoodle. You really can’t go wrong here.

Book a Sweet Vacation Today

Inspired to visit one of the top bakeries in the U.S.? Head to BusTickets.com to book an affordable ticket to the destination of your choice, then start planning your daily menus! Don’t hesitate to indulge while you’re on your break. There’s no better time than a vacation to treat yourself to your cravings.

References

Home
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https://www.helenbernhardbakery.com/

https://www.freshcupcakes.com/

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