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Top 5 Things to See & Do in Belize City

By Belize City, Caye Caulker, Central America, Chetumal, Mexico, San Pedro

With its rich culture, breathtaking natural wonders, and pristine seaside location, it’s no wonder Belize City is such a popular travel destination. Yet, if you’ve never ventured to the Central America city, then trying to figure out what to see and do is a challenge in and of itself. Fortunately, we’ve done all the work for you by highlighting the best attractions and adventures in the area. Here are the top five things to do in Belize.

1. Get to Know the City with a Historical Tour

Dating back to the days of the Maya, understanding the local culture requires taking a step back into the past. Start by visiting the Museum of Belize. Located in a restored prison building that date backs to the 1800s, the museum houses art, artifacts, and exhibits spanning over 3,000 years of the region’s history. Other popular historical attractions in the area include St. John’s Cathedral and the Swing Bridge.

2. Meet the Local Wildlife

Part of what makes Belize such a magical place is its majestic wildlife, and the locals are committed to protecting it. This characteristic is incredibly apparent at the Belize Zoo. Covering 29 acres, the attraction only features species native to the area, serving as a sanctuary for rescued animals. Visitors are able to view these magnificent creatures in person and learn the importance of wildlife education and conservation.

The Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary is another fantastic location to explore the Belize District’s natural treasures. Consisting of over 16,000 acres of protected land, the sanctuary offers a variety of nature trails and boat-based exploration through the wetlands. There are hundreds of species living in the area, including the Jabiru stork, but all creatures remain wild without enclosures. Wear your most comfortable shoes because it’s definitely a trek, but it’s well worth the sweat for nature enthusiasts.

3. Take a Day Excursion to the Islands

Belize City’s convenient coastal location also provides easy water access to some of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean. Two of the top destinations in the area are Caye Caulker and San Pedro. Luckily, the San Pedro Belize Express offers affordable water taxis to both spots daily. If you’re traveling with a group, you also have the option to book a private charter to the islands.

San Pedro offers a wide selection of retail outlets and eateries, but visitors are drawn to the town because of its close proximity to the Belize Barrier Reef and the Great Blue Hole. Seeing the reef and the sinkhole up close and personal are unforgettable experiences, so book a diving or snorkeling tour. Over on Caye Caulker, the laid-back attitude of the locals sets the perfect scene for a day of beachside lounging. The island is also only a few minutes away from the reef, providing another excellent opportunity to witness the spectacular attraction in person.

4. Dive into Ancient Mayan Culture in Chetumal

Visiting Mayan ruins is one of the top things to do in Belize. While the Altun Ha site is only about an hour outside of Belize City, Chetumal, Mexico, to the north offers easy access to even more breathtaking archeological finds. Fortunately, Chetumal is also accessible by water taxi. Book an excursion directly from Belize City or extend your island excursion by a day and travel by boat from San Pedro — it only takes about 90 minutes on the water.

Once you arrive on the Yucatán Peninsula, make the Museum of Mayan Culture your first stop. The attraction offers hundreds of artifacts, along with educational exhibits exploring Mayan culture in Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, and Mexico. From there, book a guided tour to explore the Mayan ruins at Dzibanché, Kinichná, and Kohunlich.

5. Eat & Drink Like a Local

Back in Belize City, spend some time getting to know the city through its cuisine. The area’s diverse population and rich heritage blend together to create a delicious selection of unique dishes. Located at the historic Great House, the Smokey Mermaid offers a fine dining experience with freshly caught seafood and authentic Caribbean flavors. The Riverside Tavern, on the other hand, offers a casual atmosphere with comfort food offerings, like jerk chicken, and linguini pasta. If you want to mix with locals, visit The Wet Lizard for local delicacies, like fresh fried snapper, a thirst-quenching margarita, and water views.

Follow Your Wanderlust & Save with BusTickets.com

With so many exciting things to do in Belize, don’t let checking destinations off your travel bucket list drain your wallet. At BusTickets.com, our price comparison tool allows you to compare costs across our numerous transportation partners. Simply search, compare, and book — it’s as easy as 1, 2, 3. Feed your wanderlust by buying your tickets today!

5 Tips for Traveling to the Mayo Clinic

By Rochester

5 Tips for Traveling to the Mayo Clinic

The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, is world-renowned for its incredible level of care. For that reason, individuals and families travel from all over the U.S. to access some of the brightest medical minds in the world. If it’s your first trip, you’re facing many unknowns. Luckily, these [five tips for traveling to the Mayo Clinic can help you avoid unnecessary stressors along your journey.

Know Which Building You’re Visiting First

The Mayo Clinic is composed of multiple buildings, and attempting to navigate the system for the first time can be overwhelming. It’s also split between two campuses within Rochester. The bulk of the buildings are located at the downtown campus, including the Rochester Methodist Hospital as well as the Charlton, Gonda, and Mayo buildings. Over at the Saint Mary’s campus, there’s the Children’s Hospital, St. Mary’s Hospital, and the Generose Building.

Make sure you know where your initial appointment is located so you don’t end up across town from where you need to be. It’s common for many patients to be sent between buildings and campuses for tests and additional appointments. Thankfully, the Mayo Clinic offers free shuttle service between the St. Mary’s Campus and the Gonda Building, so as long as you start out in the right place, the rest of the journey is simple.

Choose a Hotel With Shuttle Service

Even with the clinic’s free shuttles, you still need to get to and from your hotel. Rochester is equipped with multiple taxi and shuttle services, along with rideshare options. Yet, many of the hotels across the city offer complimentary shuttle services to guests, including:

* DoubleTree by Hilton Homewood Suites
* Kahler Grand Hotel Comfort Suites
* Hampton Inn & Suites – North Rochester Marriott
* Holiday Inn Express & Suites

Typically, shuttles run once or twice an hour throughout the day. Make sure to check the frequency and timeframe of your hotel’s schedule, especially if you have early appointments.

If you need to stay in town for more than a week, there are also extended-stay options available. The Home2 Suites by Hilton and Mainstay Suites both offer rooms with kitchenettes. They’re also pet-friendly. Additionally, the Serenity House Network offers fully furnished homes and apartments at affordable rates.

Check Accessibility Before Booking Lodging

The ease and availability of local transportation is a top focus for many travelers when choosing accommodations. Yet, for anyone with special mobility needs, accessibility carries even more importance. Fortunately, many of the most prominent hotels offer accessible rooms, including:

* Homewood Suites
* Hilton Garden Inn Downtown
* Springhill Suites
* Kahler Grand Hotel
* Staybridge Suites
* Aspen Suites & Select

Be sure to check with the hotel in advance to ensure they’ve assigned you a room or suite that meets ADA standards. Even if you specifically asked for one when making your reservation, double-checking a few days before your arrival will help you avoid unnecessary stress and frustration.

Use Skyways and Subways in Downtown

One of the best qualities of Rochester is its extensive network of skyways and underground walkways, which are also known as subways. These interconnected paths are enclosed, and the skyways are climate-controlled year-round, so you’re able to move freely regardless of the weather. This tip for traveling to the Mayo Clinic is particularly important in late fall and winter appointments because snow and ice are daily occurrences in [Minnesota](https://bustickets.com/plan-your-travel/us/mn/).

While the pedestrian network is only available downtown, it is incredibly large. All the Downtown Mayo buildings are connected to it, as are many of the hotels, restaurants, and shopping centers. Plus, the majority of the paths open at 6 a.m. during the week, which is perfect for early appointments. However, there are privately owned sections, so double-check your planned route beforehand to avoid hitting any early-morning or late-evening roadblocks.

Book Specialty Transportation Ahead of Time

While many hotels offer shuttle service, not all of them are wheelchair accessible. Luckily, there are specialty transportation services available in Rochester. However, it’s important that you book them ahead of time to secure your spot as availability fills up quickly. Two of the most popular local options include R&S Transport and Handi Van of Rochester.

The Mayo Clinic also offers a free concierge service for all its patients. The team offers assistance and guidance with choosing transportation options that suit specific needs, including accessibility. There’s also a Patient Travel Services department that can handle all transportation reservations, but the services are only available for a fee.

Tip for Traveling to the Mayo Clinic: Save With BusTickets.com

Now that you know the top tips for traveling to the Mayo Clinic, it’s time for one final money-saving suggestion: Book your travel with BusTickets.com. The user-friendly service is designed to make travel both convenient and affordable. From browsing route options to real-time price comparison, you can complete the entire process all on one website. Try it yourself by booking your Rochester bus tickets today!

References

https://www.experiencerochestermn.com/mayo-clinic/getting-around/

4 Best Destination Vacations for Cyclists

By Arizona, Boulder, Bus Travel, Colorado, Oregon, Portland, Seattle, Tucson, Washington

Top Bicycling Vacation Destinations

What is better than a vacation? A vacation that allows you to spend most of your time doing the things you love. If cycling is one of your favorite hobbies and you are planning a much-needed vacation, why not combine the two? To give you some inspiration, here is a list of four of the best destination vacations for cyclists.

Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon, is considered one of the greatest destination vacations for cyclists in the United States. It offers the best of both worlds in that you can bike around the exciting downtown area and venture into more secluded natural settings and trails surrounding the city. Not only that, but there are also over 350 miles of bikeways to explore and a variety of scenic routes you are going to want to ride should you visit Portland. A favorite among both locals and visitors is Kelly Point Park, which straddles the border of Washington and Oregon. It’s a breezy eight-mile route that takes you to a secret riverside beach where you can jump in and cool off after an invigorating bike ride.

Another adventurous ride that is well-loved by cyclists is the Skyline Boulevard pathway to Sauvie Island. We should warn you that this route comes with one of the toughest hills in the city, but once you reach the top, it’s nothing but flat riding the whole way to Sauvie Island. Once you arrive, you’ll be rewarded with some of the best views of the city.

Tucson, Arizona

There are over 6,000 bike trails in and around the city of Tucson, so a lack of variety will never be a problem. If you are a serious cyclist, consider doing some road biking up to Mount Lemmon, a route Tour de France riders have used for training. It’s a 20-mile uphill ride along a cactus desert until you reach the top of the summit. The best part about this ride is after getting to the top, you have an exhilarating 30-minute downhill ride to look forward to.

If you want a shorter ride, take the 10-mile journey through the Saguaro National Park East, a winding loop with lots of descents and sharp turns. For cyclists looking to make their Arizona trip almost exclusively about cycling, consider booking a stay at the Cycling House’s six-day Mountain Bike Camp. It’s a wintertime retreat that includes cycling lessons, fun activities such as trips to local breweries, and—the best part—a daily massage after a long day of riding.

Seattle, Washington

There are so many different biking trails throughout Seattle, Washington, that boast spectacular views of the natural surroundings, so it may seem overwhelming when it comes to picking which ones you’ll ride. If you want a nice, long ride, embark on the tried-and-true Burke-Gilman Trail, arguably one of the most popular trails in Seattle. You’ll ride 20 miles to Kenmore and cycle along Lake Washington and the Ship Canal before getting to your destination.

If you want a leisurely, laid-back bike ride, take on the South Lake Union Trails and Ship Canal Trail, where you’ll do a loop around Lake Union. The entire ride is almost exclusively bike trails, so you won’t have to worry about traffic on the roads. Finally, if you just want to fit in a quick, brisk ride, try the five-mile Seattle Waterfront Trails. You’ll ride along Elliot Bay and have a chance to revel in the beauty of the waterfront while getting in a bit of invigorating exercise.

Boulder, Colorado

One of the best ways to explore the natural wonders surrounding Boulder, Colorado, is to hop on a bike and pedal your way through the region.

If you’re looking for a ride that’s not too hard and not too easy, you’ll love the Spring Brook Loop, a 12-mile loop that takes you along the foothills of the mountains and has minimal ascents along the way. If you are looking for a more challenging ride with rougher terrain, you’ll enjoy the Walker Ranch Trail, a 7.8-mile loop with a 1,500-foot ascent up and along a mountain.

Another great option is the Betasso Preserve ride, a 7.4-mile loop that takes you along hard-packed dirt (easy for riding) and through bike trails into forests with lush towering trees. If the Betasso Preserve ride isn’t long enough for you, opt for the slightly more challenging Super Betasso ride that begins in the city center and goes through the trails on the outskirts of town.

Head to These Destination Vacations for Cyclists

Ready to start planning your trip to one of these destination vacations for cyclists? Begin by buying your bus ticket on BusTickets.com today!

References

https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm?PropertyID=209&action=ViewPark

Cycling Trips & Vacations

http://www.seattleoutdoorsinfo.com/hiking-and-biking/seattle-biking/seattle-bike-trails/seattle-waterfront-trails

Betasso Preserve

How to Pack for a Week With Just a Carry-on

By Bus Travel, Packing Tips

How to Pack for a Week With Just a Carry-On

If packing isn’t your strong point, then the idea of cramming everything you need for a week-long vacation into a single carry-on may seem ridiculous. But it can be done. In fact, it’s been done by millions of seasoned travelers many times over. If you want to enjoy the benefits of packing light, you can make it happen by using these helpful tips.

Create a Packing Checklist

If you love making lists, this tip is for you. And even if you don’t, you’re going to start to love them after realizing how much they help you pack more efficiently.

Before you even begin packing, make a list of all the essentials you know you’ll need. Start with your toiletries. Some of the basics include deodorant, toothpaste and a toothbrush, shampoo, conditioner, a shaving razor, any skincare products you use, and any medications you take. Keep your toiletries minimal and only take what you absolutely need.

Next, move on to clothing. Think of the activities or events you have going on during the week and pack accordingly—don’t take anything extra. A list will help ensure you don’t just mindlessly throw anything into your carry-on and end up overpacking.

Wear Your Biggest and Heaviest Items

Save an incredible amount of room when you pack for a week with just a carry-on by leaving out your biggest and heaviest items. You’ll end up with plenty of extra space to pack lightweight clothing items, an extra pair of shoes, and anything else you need. If you are traveling during the colder months, wear your winter coat and boots instead of packing them. If you end up getting too warm on the ride to your destination, you can always take your coat off and swap your boots for slippers once you are situated in your seat. Don’t waste the small amount of space you have in your carry-on when you can wear the items that take up the most space.

Be Honest With Yourself About What You Really Need

A lot of people tend to bring too many shoes, which can take up even more room than clothes. Minimalist travelers only need one to three pairs of shoes at the most: a reliable, high-quality pair of shoes you wear when doing your walking; sneakers, which could double as the walking shoes; and dress shoes or heels depending on the nature of the trip. And when it comes to clothes, many people pack multiple outfits they never even end up wearing on the trip, so be sure to make appropriate choices from your closet.

Focus on _How_ to Pack

The hard part isn’t what to pack, it’s how to pack it to save space in your carry-on. One of the first things you can do is roll your clothes instead of folding them. This will instantly create more space in your suitcase. Another way to make more space is to pack your clothes into a packing cube to compartmentalize your carry-on and group items together.

A good travel tip is to put all of your heavy items at the bottom of your carry-on; this includes toiletry and cosmetic bags, shoes, and thicker clothing items. Small items like socks or phone and laptop chargers can be tucked into shoes or hats.

When it comes to toiletries and any other non-clothing items you are packing, make sure to get mini versions of everything: travel toothpaste, shampoos, mouthwash, and so on. Better yet, don’t bother packing these items at all and instead use the toiletries at your hotel. This will free up even more space in your carry-on as you won’t have to pack bulky toiletry bags. If there are certain cosmetic or toiletry items you can’t live without, hold off on packing those items and instead purchase them at a local store when you reach your destination.

Ready to Travel After Learning How to Pack for a Week With Just a Carry-on?

We’re sure you’re now feeling confident enough to pack light for your upcoming trip. So start making the rest of your travel plans by buying your bus ticket on BusTickets.com today!