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Best Beaches & Scuba Diving Spots in Bermuda

January 25th, 2019 by

woman snorkeling in Bermuda

Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in Bermuda

 

It’s no wonder that Bermuda is considered to be one of the best places to snorkel and scuba dive in the world. Between the crystal clear water of the Atlantic Ocean, stunning coral reefs and hundreds of centuries’ old shipwrecks, there’s plenty of sights to see underwater on Bermuda vacations. Whether you prefer snorkeling or scuba diving, you will want to put these spots on your list for your adventure trip to Bermuda.

 

Best Places to Snorkel Close to Shore

If you’re new to snorkeling, you may want to start your adventure travel excursion close to the shore. For the best snorkeling just off Bermuda’s white sand beaches, you will want to check out these easy to reach locations.

Church Bay – With incredible reefs located just a short distance from the sand, this South Shore location is perfect for viewing Bermuda’s collection of fascinating sea life without venturing too far. Keep an eye out for blue angelfish, parrotfish and a variety of coral.

Elbow Beach – Starting about 200 feet offshore, this reef runs parallel to the South Shore’s pink-sand beach and is a great spot to see the underwater sights of Bermuda.

Tobacco Bay – On the East End of the island, you’ll find one of the best places to snorkel in Bermuda. Combine shallow water with rocky coves and you have the ideal setting for snorkeling active adventures.

seal swimming in Bermuda

Snorkeling and Scuba Diving Among Bermuda’s Shipwrecks

While the coral reefs that surround Bermuda make a beautiful home for the island’s plentiful sea life, they have also spelled doom for more than 300 ships over the years. In fact, Bermuda is considered to be the Shipwreck Capital of the Atlantic, which means that there’s plenty of history to explore in its shallow waters. Here are a few of the top shipwreck sites for scuba diving and snorkeling on your Bermuda vacation.

Mary Celestia – Dating back to the American Civil War, the Mary Celestia was a 225-foot paddlewheel steamer used by the Confederate Army to smuggle goods to the soldiers. It sank in 1864 after hitting a reef and rests 55 feet below the surface near the South Shore with the paddlewheels still visible. The ship made the news in 2011, nearly 150 years after it sank, when five bottles of wine were found intact in the bow compartment.

Cristobal Colon – At 499 feet long, this Spanish cruise liner is the largest of the shipwrecks to be found in Bermuda. After crashing into the coral reefs near the North Shore in 1936, it remained on the reef until it was officially sunk during World War II when it was used for bombing practice and now rests in pieces on both sides of the reef with depths ranging from 15 to 60 feet. You can explore 100,000 square feet of wreckage that is now home to a variety of marine life.

The North Carolina – This English iron hull sank on New Year’s Day in 1880 shortly after setting sail for England from Bermuda. Although the mid-section of the 250-foot ship has collapsed over the years, the bow and stern remain nearly intact and upright, making for an impressive dive site in the West End.

The Hermes – Located one mile offshore at Horseshoe Bay, the Hermes is fully intact and one of the most popular dive sites for Bermuda vacations. After experiencing engine trouble near Bermuda, the U.S. Navy ship was abandoned by its crew as repairs would have cost more than the ship was worth and acquired by the Bermuda Diver’s Association, who sunk it in 1985 to make an artificial reef.

The King George – As the largest of the fully intact shipwrecks off Bermuda’s shores, the King George was purposefully sunk five miles from North Rock after serving the harbor as a dredger for nearly two decades. Located less than 60 feet below the water, the upright ship is a must for those seeking active adventures.

Don’t Miss The Cathedral

Not all of the best scuba diving sites in Bermuda focus on
shipwrecks. The coral reefs are also worth planning an adventure trip to the
island, particularly the Cathedral. This underwater dome located off the East
End is an impressive site filled with tunnels, archways and holes that allow
sunlight to filter through the water to create a dreamy underwater world. Keep
watch for schools of parrot fish  and
snappers. You can also see the huge tarpons, a fish that grows to five feet.

Keep this list of best places to snorkel and scuba dive,
along with these travel
accessories
, handy for the next time you’re planning Bermuda vacations.

Don’t forget to check out our travel videos here.

Scuba diving and shipwrecks in Bermuda

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Best Beaches in America

January 24th, 2019 by
Best Beaches

Best Beaches In America

From the Atlantic to the Pacific, there’s no doubt that America is home to some of the best beaches in the world. Of course, you can expect to find the best beach vacation destinations in the warm weather paradises of Hawaii, California, and Florida but there are gorgeous seaside destinations all along the country’s coastline. Some may even argue that they rival the best beaches in the Caribbean or Bermuda. Whether you’re searching for the best family beaches or the most romantic white sand beach spots, the United States offers a wonderful selection of beaches for oceanfront fun and adventure travel

Pensacola Beach, Florida

Located on Santa Rosa Island off the Florida panhandle, the white sand beach of Pensacola attracts visitors with the promise of clear blue water and vibrant sunsets. It’s so incredible that USA Today even ranked it as the best beach in Florida in 2018. The calm waters are perfect for both snorkeling and swimming.

Clearwater Beach, Florida

There are many active adventures to be found at Clearwater Beach along Florida’s Gulf Coast. From parasailing and paddle boarding to more leisurely activities, like sunbathing and dolphin watching, this three-mile-long white sand beach has all the makings for an adventure trip. Plus, there are lifeguards on duty and free entertainment nightly on Pier 60.

Ka’anapali Beach, Maui, Hawaii

Considering that Ka’anapali Beach was once used by Maui royalty, it should come as no surprise that it’s thought to be one of the best beaches in the United States. The three-mile white sand beach on the northwest part of the island features a daily sunset cliff-diving ceremony that is a must-see for any adventure trip. For the best beach vacation experience, be sure to try surfing, snorkeling or paddle boarding.

Coronado Beach, California

Everyone from locals to tourists and even canine companions love San Diego’s Coronado Beach, which includes an off-leash dog beach at the northern end. The iconic Hotel Del Coronado makes a picture worthy backdrop for this 1.5 mile long stretch of sparkly mica-rich sand that is considered one of the best beaches in the country.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

When it comes to adventure vacations, South Carolina’s Myrtle Beach has it all. This resort town includes amusement parks, outlet malls, golf courses, and a minor league baseball team. You’ll also find active adventures, such as surfing, sailing, and swimming in the warm waters during the summer.

Cape Hatteras, North Carolina

This North Carolina beach stretches for 72 miles in the Outer Banks and enjoys a year-round mild climate due to the Gulf Stream. Be sure to add the lighthouse to your adventure trip bucket list – at 196 feet, it’s the nation’s tallest.

While Southern California is often thought to be the location of the state’s best beaches, don’t count out Carmel-by-the-Sea. Located just south of San Francisco, this is considered to be one of the best family beaches in the country. From viewing sea otters to relaxing around a bonfire, there’s something for everyone at Carmel Beach.

St. Augustine Beach, Florida

Not only is St. Augustine the site of the oldest European settlement in America, but it’s also home to some of the best beaches. You’ll find white sand beaches, a splash park on the St. Johns County Ocean Pier for the kids and plenty of opportunities for active adventures.

Cannon Beach, Oregon

Tide pools and Haystack Rock, which juts 235 feet out of the ocean and is home to tufted puffins during the summer, make this Oregon beach one of the best beach vacation destinations. While the water is chillier here than other locations on this list, a wetsuit can help you comfortably enjoy the waves, even in the summer.

Hapuna Beach, Big Island of Hawaii

You’ll find Hapuna Beach on Hawaii’s Big Island, along with lush tropical landscape and calm water during the summer that is perfect for bodysurfing, snorkeling and scuba diving. Watching the sunset is a popular activity on this westward-facing beach too.

Orange Beach, Alabama

Although Alabama only has 60 miles of coastline along the Gulf of Mexico, Orange Beach takes full advantage of the white sand beach for sunbathing as well as active adventures, such as parasailing and paddle boarding. You’ll also find the largest artificial fishing reef in the country.

Ogunquit Beach, Maine

Maine may not be the first place you’d think of when it comes to the best beaches in America but this 3.5 mile stretch of sand actually translates to “beautiful place by the sea.” Due to its northern location, it’s best to visit during the summer months to take full advantage of its beauty.

There’s no doubt many other coastal hot spots that could be added to this list of best beaches in America but if you’re searching for the best beach vacation in the country, these 12 adventure trip beach destinations should set you on the right path to finding the oceanfront active adventures that you seek.

Need help deciding what to pack on your adventure trip? Take a peek at Active Traveler’s list of handy travel accessories.

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Our Picks for Must Have Travel Accessories

November 30th, 2018 by

Top Travel Accessories

travel essentials

Anyone can travel but not everyone is as prepared for the journey as they could be.

A few simple travel accessories can make or break a vacation.

From making your flight or road trip more comfortable to enhancing your experience at the destination, you can increase your travel satisfaction by choosing the right carry on luggage, USB charger, and other travel accessories.

Getting There

While the saying, “it’s the journey, not the destination,” may be a great motto for life, it’s not necessarily true when it comes to travel. Getting from point A to point B is often more of a nuisance than an experience in which to look forward. Make the travel portion of your vacation more enjoyable by being prepared with these must-have travel accessories. Trust us, you’ll arrive at your destination in a much better mood!

    • Noise Canceling Headphones – There are few things more irritating than being stuck in an airplane seat for hours on end with a wailing baby in the next row or a snoring seatmate next to you. Thankfully, these auditory annoyances can be easily blocked with a pair of noise-canceling headphones.
      Our Top Pick: Bose QuiteComfort 35 II, available here
    • Compression Socks – Lower the odds of developing blood clots by wearing a pair of compression socks while up in the air. Compression socks improve circulation, which is often hindered by long periods of sitting in one position, such as on a long flight.
      Our Top Pick: Sockwell, available here
    • Portable USB Charger – When traveling, never leave home without a portable USB charger. Not only will this handy battery pack charge your dying cell phone but it can also be used to give other electronics a boost mid-air or on the road.
      Our Top Pick: AUKEY Power Bank 20,000mAh, available here
    • Carry On Luggage – Be sure to check with your airline regarding their carry on luggage size requirements to avoid being charged with checked baggage fees at the gate. Then measure and double check your carry on luggage dimensions before you head to the airport.
      Our Top Pick: Calpak Carry On, available here
    • Toiletry Travel Bottles – Not all toiletry travel bottles are created equally. Look for leak-proof refillable shampoo, conditioner and lotion bottles under 100mL or 3.4 oz each to avoid having to clean up a gooey mess upon arrival at your destination.
      Our Top Pick: Dot&Dot 3oz Travel Bottles, available here
    • Luggage Tags – The number of similar-looking bags on an airport baggage claim carousel is surprisingly high. Make sure that you always collect the correct bag by attaching easily distinguishable luggage tags to your suitcase. You can also tie a colorful ribbon to the handle to make it easier to spot.
      Our Top Pick: Eccolo World Traveler Luggage Tags, Set of 3, available here
  • Neck Pillow – Anyone who has ever attempted to sleep on an airplane knows that a good neck pillow can be the difference between a restless red eye and the ability to catch at least a few zzz’s.
    Our Top Pick: Travelrest Therapeutic Memory Foam Travel & Neck Pillow, available here

While You Are There

Of course, the whole point of traveling is getting to experience a new place and there are things that you can pack to make your stay more comfortable once you arrive at your destination. Here are some travel accessories to consider to make your vacation more enjoyable whether you’re relaxing at the hotel or out exploring the local culture.

  • Travel Adapter – If you’re traveling outside of the United States, be sure to pack the appropriate travel adapter to make sure that you can access the electrical outlets at your destination. There are various travel adapters needed throughout the world so do your research ahead of time and come prepared. If you plan to do a lot of traveling to different countries, look for a universal travel adapter that can be useful in multiple locations.
    Our Top Pick Domestic: Accell 3-Outlet Travel Surge Protector, available here
    Our Top Pick European
    OREI European Plug Adapter Schuko Type E/F, available here
  • Multi USB Charger – Hotel rooms rarely have enough electrical outlets to keep up with the charging needs of a modern traveler. Come prepared with a multi USB charger that only requires one outlet but provides multiple USB ports for all your electronic needs.
    Our Top PickAnker 40W 4-Port USB Wall Charger with Foldable Plug, available here
  • Toiletries – While hotels may supply mini bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and other toiletries, rarely are these top-notch products. Bring your own collection of travel-sized toiletries to make sure that you have what you need. John Paul Mitchell Systems, for instance, offers many of their hair care products in convenient travel-sized packaging.
    Our Top Pick: Awapuhi Wild Ginger Travel In Style Set, available here
  • White Noise Machine – Sleeping away from the comfort of your own home is often a challenge, particularly if it’s not exactly a quiet setting. Drown out the background noise of your environment with a portable white noise machine to create a peaceful setting that will allow you to get the much-needed rest you need to give you the energy to continue on your travels.
    Our Top Pick: Marpac Rohm Portable White Noise Sound Machine. Available here
  • Water Purifier Bottle – Not all countries have safe drinking water and it gets expensive (not to mention damaging to the environment) to continually purchase water bottles. Bring a water purifier bottle to turn tap water into clean, drinkable water wherever you may go.
    Our Top Pick: OKO H2O Level-2 Advanced Filtration Water Bottle, available here
  • Backpack – The right travel backpack can make it easier for you to get out and about in a new location. Look for one that has convenient pouches for safely storing your important travel documents as well as anything else you may need on your adventure.
    Our Top Pick: Deuter Transit 40 Carry-On Travel Backpack available here

When packing your bag for your next trip, keep these handy travel accessories in mind to avoid any unnecessary hassles. After all, a vacation is meant to be fun, not stressful. So, grab your USB charger, attach your luggage tags to your carry-on luggage or backpack and enjoy your adventure!

Don’t forget to check out our travel videos here.

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Top Surf Spots In The US

November 29th, 2018 by

Top US Surf Spots

man surfing in a wave

The sun-soaked beaches of Hawaii, California, and Florida are home to many of the best places to surf in the United States. 

Before you start planning the best surf trip ever, take a look at this list to find your perfect match.

Hawaii Surfing Hot Spots

Hawaii and surfing are a match made in tropical heaven. Between the warm water and abundant coastline, Hawaii has beckoned surfers to its shores to catch a wave for decades. Of course, not all surfing locations are created equally, and different spots offer different experiences but there’s no doubt that the islands are some of the best places to surf in the world, not to mention hike, swim and simply relax. There’s a Hawaiian activity for everyone!

Here are a few of the beaches that you may want to consider when choosing your Hawaii surfing vacation:

Haleiwa (All Levels)

Whether you’re just beginning to learn how to surf or you’ve been surfing for years, this spot-on Oahu’s North Shore offers something for everyone. Stick close to shore to catch some gentle waves that make for great practice for newcomers or head out further to try your skills against a raging riptide.

Hanalei Bay (All Levels)

This spot-on Kauai gives surfers of all experience levels the opportunity to ride the waves. For more advanced surfing, check out Queens and Kings Reefs in the outer reef. Beginners can try to find their balance in the calmer water near the pier.

Waimea Bay (Expert Level)

Oahu’s North Shore is home to the infamous Waimea Bay. With waves regularly cresting at more than 20 feet high during the winter months, thanks to impressive swells from the north and west, this surf destination is not for beginners. Between a strong current and shallow reef, there’s not a lot of room for error so tread carefully and be sure to have lots of experience under your belt before you attempt to ride these waves. For nearby surfing locations, be sure to check out Chun’s Reef, Laniakea, Log Cabins, Ehukai, Pipeline, Sunset Beach and Velzeland.

Jaws (Expert Level)

Located on the island of Maui, Jaws promises massive waves that should only be attempted by experienced surfers. If you have the expertise and guts to tackle this behemoth, you’ll undoubtedly earn bragging rights but, and we repeat, don’t try this unless you know what you are doing. You’ll likely be safer to watch the spectacular waves, which can reach up to a rumored 120 feet, from the shore.

Best Locations for California Surfing

Thanks to the iconic music of the Beach Boys, you likely know that surfing has been an important part of California beach culture for years. There are numerous locations to catch a wave up and down the California coast, from San Diego to San Francisco, and don’t miss all the other outdoor activities that this diverse state has to offer.

Here are just a few of the best places to surf in the Golden State:

Huntington Beach (All Levels)

Known as Surf City, USA, this Orange County beach is home to the US Open of Surfing, making it a natural selection for any surfer. If the waves are good enough for the world’s best surfers to compete in, they’re good enough for you.

Maverick’s (Expert Level)

Conquering the iconic Maverick’s in the San Francisco area’s Half Moon Bay is likely on the bucket list for experienced surfers but it’s not to be messed with for beginners. Between a dangerous rip tide, rocky ocean floor and the potential for sharks to be nearby, these waves are not for everyone.

Trestles Beach (All Levels)

Thanks to consistent wave conditions, this San Clemente beach has played host to many pro surfing events over the years and is a great spot for anyone looking to explore the California surf.

The Wedge (Expert Level)

This artificially created surfing hot spot, which is caused by waves breaking against the man-made jetty, is another spot that is purely for experienced surfers. The waves are intense but can make for a great ride if you know what you’re doing.

Surfrider (All Levels)

Malibu is home to more than just the beach homes of the rich and famous. It’s also where you can find the spectacular Surfrider beach with the perfect mix of waves for all surf skill levels.

The Best Surfing in Florida

While California and Hawaii may be the first states to come to mind when you think about surfing, Florida has perfect weather and miles of coastline to practice your surf skills. Plan your visit to the Sunshine State, tour the Everglades and check out a beach to try out your surfing technique.

Cocoa Beach (All Levels)

The home to one of the top surfers in the world, Kelly Slater, Cocoa Beach is a great spot for learning to surf. It did work out well for Kelly, after all. The waves here are gentle enough that you have room to make errors and improve your surfing technique without fear of serious injury.

New Smyrna Beach (All Levels)

With a consistent surf, this 13-mile inlet is a great spot for surfing in Florida. Just be aware that the beach is called The Shark Bite Capital of the World for a reason, but it doesn’t deter surfers from tackling these waves.

Don’t forget to check out our travel videos here.

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Middaugh Training Joins ActiveTraveler.tv

October 17th, 2018 by
Middaugh crossing finishing line

ActiveTraveler.tv teams up with Josiah Middaugh & Middaugh Coaching

 

ActiveTraveler.tv has been founded as an information source using short-form video to communicate active lifestyle travel, destinations, healthy living and more.

Josiah Middaugh, World Champion endurance competitor, founded Middaugh Coaching to assist and motivate people to get fit, stay fit and enjoy a healthy and active lifestyle.

It is only natural that these two groups have come together to share information, tips and motivation for people to work on their fitness even as they travel. ActiveTraveler.tv Founder, Tom Kiely, said, “I have known Josiah for many years as we built the XTERRA World Tour and am honored to call him friend. More than any other world class athlete I have met, Josiah has a passion to share his knowledge and experience with any and all people who may ask. It was only natural for him to start Middaugh Coaching as a great platform to share his knowledge. We are proud to have Josiah on our ActiveTraveler.tv team and to feature his videos, articles and knowledge on a regular basis.”

Middaugh states, “Health and fitness have been my life-long pursuit both as a professional athlete and as a coach and trainer. Elite racing has taken me to six continents and has allowed me to see the world through a unique lens. ActiveTraveler.tv is a natural fit for my training business and gives me a platform to shares tips and advice for those looking to stay fit while traveling.”

Research by Outdoorindustry.org shows that the outdoor recreation and health/fitness sector continues phenomenal growth and more people are attracted to the pursuit of a healthy lifestyle every day. For those who travel, whether for business of leisure, staying fit while on the road makes the travels even that much more enjoyable.

About ActiveTraveler.tv

ActiveTraveler.tv is a division of Honolulu-based Television, Events and Marketing Inc. It features short-form travel videos and direct links to resorts, destinations, and activities around the world.

About Middaugh Coaching

Personalized, scientifically based, results-driven programs for endurance athletes at every level. Contact Middaugh Coaching here.

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