Traveling with Dogs

If you’re planning a long trip and can’t leave your pooch at the neighborhood kennel, there’s no reason to worry. With a little planning and orienting your dog, traveling with your favorite pet should be one joyride.

Road Trips

Here are some tips to make the trip easier for both you and your dog.

  • Pre-Trip

Get your dog used to riding in the car by taking him on short trips to fun places like the dog park, so that he looks forward to amusement at the end of the drive. Also, try not to feed the dog much before the trip – this can help control car sickness.

  • Packing List
  1. Pack your dog’s food, treats, favorite toys, and leash.
  2. Water varies in smell and taste depending on the place, and your dog may not want to drink it. It is best to carry plenty of water along, and give it to your dog regularly.
  3. Dog seat belts are an option if your pet is too frisky.
  4. If your dog has a folding crate, carry that along too. When you get to your destination, you can put your dog in his crate when you have to leave him alone for some time.
  5. Ask your vet for motion sickness medication if this is your dog’s first long distance trip.

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  • On the Road
  1. Use a strapped crate or a dog seat belt to ensure safety. Use towels to protect the seats.
  2. Stop every few hours to walk your dog and give him water.
  3. Never leave your dog in a hot car with the windows closed.

Air Travel

Air travel can be a little tricky for dogs, so here’s your best bet to make it as safe and comfortable as possible.

  1. Most airlines allow dogs, so call ahead of time, verify and make reservations accordingly. Airlines have a limit on the number of pets on a flight, so best to do it well in advance.
  2. Dogs require health certificates and in case of international trips, vaccinations to fly, which your vet should be happy to provide.
  3. Few airlines even allow you to carry your dog along in the cabin if it small enough and well-behaved. Large dogs have to be left in the cargo area, which is temperature and pressure regulated. Your dog will need a kennel, verify with your pet store owner that it is suitable for air travel and meets requirements. If it is a long distance flight, kennel training your pet might be a good idea.
  4. Lastly, pets should have proper identification, with the owner’s name, address, phone number and the name of the dog clearly mentioned on the dog tag.
  5. It is advisable that you do not feed your dog a few hours before the flight to avoid motion sickness.  Moreover, do not put food or water in the kennel as it may spill and create a mess. There is no need to use a sedative before departure, and always consult your vet in case your dog is on medication.

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The first trip is always the hardest, as your dog may get jumpy due to the unfamiliar happenings. Once you’re done with it, your dog’s going to dig the roads as much as you.

Summer travel idea – Nuremberg, Germany

Everyone has started planning for their summer vacation travel and many are clueless on where to go. We are going to throw in some suggestions. Location ideas are courtesy Where the f*** should I go this summer?

Some basics about Nuremberg first. You can easily reach here through its airport which has a good service by Air Berlin, but the best way is to enter the city by its train station, located a stroll away from the beautiful old town. Within the city, it has various subway lines and the old town is best explored on foot.

Begin your stay in the city with a trip to the Castle which dominates most of the old city. It offers a tour in English from the Tourist Information Center in the Market Square. The Castle offers best views of the old town through its towers. It also houses a museum and an old deep well.

Outside the castle, you can visit Castle Quarter with its romantic timbered houses and St. Sebald Church. The heart of the city is at the market square Hauptmarkt – a lively place with beautiful Frauenkirche and the fountain Schöner Brunnen.

The old city also houses St. Lawrence Church and a huge National Museum of art and crafts. Depending on your interests, you can visit New Museum (art and craft), Albrecht Durer’s house, Toy Museum or Medieval Dungeons.

Nuremberg also had a Nazi connection and outside the old city, one can visit the Nazi party rally ground with its large Colosseum.

Especially if you are traveling with family, Nuremberg zoo is a must visit. It is one of the best zoo in entire Europe and a sure delight for the kids. It is nicely landscaped and provides lots of activities for the kids.

From the city, you can also easily travel for a day trip to another beautiful city, Erfurt, famous for its impressive ensemble of cathedral and St. Severi.

This summer, the town is hosting International Puppet Theater Festival (3rd to 12th May), and the biggest outdoor (and free) music festival, Bardentreffen (July). Late in summers, the city hosts Altstadtfest, or the “Old Town Festival”, attracting over a million tourists.

So what is your plan this summer?

Two days in Kyoto

Holidayen is all about travel planning and creating automatic itineraries, and as we prepare ourselves for the launch, we would love to share itinerary ideas for some of the wonderful destinations around the world. Starting in the series today, we have here, a two day itinerary for the beautiful city of Kyoto.

First, a primer on how to get around the city. Subway and buses are your best bets, cabs fare are on slightly higher side, so the recommended way is to grab a two-day unlimited subway and bus card for 2000 yens from your nearest subway station and forget about the hassles of buying tickets for each ride. While subway rides are pretty standard with maps and station names in English, buses can be tricky, names and routes are almost never in English, and English knowing locals are not as ubiquitous as you might expect. But nothing to worry, take a copy of this document http://www.city.kyoto.jp/koho/eng/access/img/basunabieigo-omote.pdf and you will never need to worry about anything else about traveling. Armed with your unlimited travel card and the Bible of bus rides, let’s begin!

Day 1

In case you are not aware, Kyoto is world famous for its temples, so will begin the trip with some of its most popular temples and shrines. Begin your day with an early morning walk through the thousands of torii gates at Fushimi Inari shrine. The trail takes you through the wooded area to the summit of the mountain, entire trip taking around 2-3 hours.

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You can return from Yotsutsuji intersection (around halfway point with a good view of Kyoto) if walking 2-3 hours is not your thing.

Grab something to eat in the bustling shops of Kyoto station on the way to next stop, Nijo Castle. You can get good shots of the castle and grounds from the old foundation stone.

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You can also walk to the Kyoto Imperial Palace nearby, however, you can enter the castle grounds only through prior online booking. For lunch, head to Nishiki Market for some authentic local street food. 

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Spend the evening at the famous Golden Pavilion temple or Kinkakuji. The temple complex and the landscape are a unique picturesque combination of natural and architectural beauty. A perfect place for photography indeed!

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You can visit around the neighborhood around the temple thereafter and head to Pontocho for dining. You can find a wide range of dining options there. from inexpensive street food to expensive establishments.

Day 2

Begin the day from Ginkakuji, beautiful temple on the Eastern side of the city. It is also known as Silver Pavilion, and you guessed it right, modeled after the Golden Pavilion of Kinkakuji.

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From Ginkakuji, walk to the Philosophers’ Walk, especially beautiful during the Cherry Blossom season, when it is full of tourists and locals. There are a number of temples around which you can visit on the way. The walk ends at Nanzenji Temple, which is another good temple to visit.

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In the afternoon, explore Higashiyama district just south of the Nanzenji. It is an excellent place for some souvenir shopping as well as exploring the way to the Kiyomizudera temple complex through the maze of streets going up and down the hills of Higashiyama. Like any other major tourist areas, plenty of options for eating and a good place to sit and eat before visiting Kiyomizudera, the next stop.

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Kiyomizudera is especially beautiful during Fall and Spring illuminations, but definitely a must see regardless of that during other seasons.

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After marveling at the beautiful wooden architecture, head back downhill through Higashiyama towards Gion, which offers plenty of options to spend the evening sipping sake or tea with geiko and meiko entertainment. Most popular street for dining is Hanamikoji street which houses a number of restaurants serving traditional Kyoto cuisine. A perfect place to end the scenic trip of Kyoto!

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Feel free to comment with your suggestions for improving this trip and happy traveling!

Image Courtesy: Japan-Guide

Travel Bucket List

Happy New Year! Do you have destinations in your mind for this year? Here, let us help you with some suggestions. These should be on your bucket list, seriously!

1. If you are inclined towards history and architecture, France is definitely a place to be. And even if not, France is a travelers’ paradise.

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Pictured above is Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Reims

2. Then, there is the largest religious complex in the world, Angkor, standing calmly since last 800 years, making me respect all those sculptors who patiently carved almost all the surfaces in the complex, even the roof.

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3. Now, as the threat of ‘End of the World’ is well past us, experiencing the Mayan civilization is the next on agenda. I am sure there are more important lessons we can learn from them other than doomsday predictions.

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Pictured above is Chichen Itza in Mexico

Rounding the list off with two amazing places in India.

4. The magnificent Mysore palace in Karnataka, India

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5. …and the Vittala Temple Complex in Hampi

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Of course, that’s just scratching the surface. It’s a huge world to explore

Would love to know what’s next on your list.