By Bea Broda

The first thing I told my friends after returning from two trips to the Azores, a gorgeous group of islands that belongs to Portugal, I told them,

“Better go and visit now, because they are so unspoiled and untouched, and that can’t possibly last!”

Here is my video clip about many of the islands of the Azores:

I also knew that they had many initiatives in place to ensure that their little paradise would never get over-run with some of the more negative aspects that popular tourism can bring with it. That’s why I was so please d to see this following story about the Azores leading the pack in terms of being a “green” destination.

The Global Sustainable Tourism Review by QualityCoast has named the Azores the leading green destination in Europe, awarding the Portuguese island chain a score of 8.9 out of 10. The Azores are on the organization’s list of the 100 Most Sustainable Destinations of the World.

In 2014, the Azores earned the QualityCoast Platinum Destination award, created to recognize quality standards related to marine life, nature and coastal areas as well as identity, culture, and society, all which affect the experience of tourists visiting the region.

The Azores are considered among the best sustainable destinations in the world for reasons including the following:

• Just 5% of the island chain’s land is occupied by buildings

• The Azores are protected by regional law against the cultivation of GMOs

• Currently, 28% of energy produced in the Azores comes from renewable sources; that number is expected to reach 75% in 2018

• The Azores include two UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the City of Angra do Heroismo on Terceira, and the Landscape of the Pico Island Vineyard Culture

• Graciosa, Flores, and Corvo are Biosphere Reserves, which certifies the conservation of the natural world, the balance in the relationship between the population and the surrounding environment, and demands the creation of logistical conditions for the development of activities that promote good environmental practices and scientific research

• Focus on geotourism promotes and protects the geological heritage of the volcanic islands

• Focus on ecotourism, including activities like whale watching and hiking, promotes education and awareness among locals and visitors alike

The Sustainable Destinations Global Top 100 list, launched at the end of 2014 for the first time, aims to celebrate the management efforts of the most sustainable destinations on Earth. The list is the result of open calls in social media followed by evaluation and selection by 30 international tourism sustainability experts.

“The Global Top 100 aims to recognize tourism destinations that have worked hard to make a difference and take sustainability seriously,” said Albert Salman program director.

 

http://beabroda.com/azores/

by Bea Broda

I am personally excited to be attending Carnival in Victoria, Seychelles this year, because I was at the very first one, and now I will be attending the fifth! It has grown so much over the years, but there are a few things that are absolutely constant. Performances from Carnival favourites like the ones that come from Brasil and Nottinghill are on that list. Also is the participation of practically everyone that lives on the island of Mahé, the main island of Seychelles where the Carnival takes place. It’s a celebration not only for this country, but for the world, as so many cultures and nationalities are embraced and celebrated with this hugely unique event!

On this page is a video clip I produced from one of my previous visits to the Seychelles amazing Carnival

I am happy to hear that loyal major players are back for Seychelles carnival 2015 and this year they will increase their visibility through the bank of International News Network now confirmed to be covering the event. Major players Brazil, Notting Hill and China will come out more spectacularly to secure a place in the top three ranks in the international delegations category.

VISIT SOME OF THE OTHER ISLANDS

I have been around most of the main island of Mahé, but have also visited gorgeous paradises such as La Digue and Praslin Islands. Here is my video clip that gives you a synopsis of those two islands:

THE CARNIVAL PRESS RELEASE

0CarnivalIn the fourth edition of the carnival, China clinched the best international float accolade.  Notting Hill delegation that had won the best float title every single year since the birth of Seychelles Carnaval International de Victoria, in 2011 had to contend with second position.

Cambodia, Indonesia, Germany, South Africa, Spain, Reunion Island have already confirmed their participation, this will not be their first time but they will have their own surprises in store.

More delegations will be confirming their participation  in the upcoming weeks.

For the first time ever, there will be a cultural element marrying with the carnival element.

Quality will reign over quantity in terms of what will be expected of international press flocking down for the 2015 edition of this monumental event.

As popular local artist Joe Samy sings in one of his songs ‘Seychelles will wear its most beautiful dress’ during the weekend of April 24 to 26.  Decorations will hang from trees to signal this upcoming event and the streets will be crammed in every corner with the buzzing crowd that will anxiously await for the floats.

An explosion of colours, a multitude of joyous sounds reflecting different cultures will delight the excited onlookers.  After all, Carnaval International de Victoria is known as the only carnival that brings together the world’s best carnivals and the best cultural groups from the Community of Nations from around the world.

Carnaval International de Victoria  planned 24th -26th April 2015 is about to celebrate its fifth birthday and Seychelles is already in celebration mood.

Photo Caption: Loyal players, China, Nottinghill and Brasil in 2014 Carnival parade

It was awe-inspiring for me to have been present at the re-dedication of Victoria Falls as a peace park in 2011, and this stunning park has been dedicated once again.

IIPT (The International Institute of Peace through Tourism) is honored to announce the re-naming of the IIPT International Peace Park at Victoria Falls as the IIPT Maya Angelou International Peace Park in recognition of the inspiration and positive influence that the award winning Poet and Author; Television, Film and Stage Director; Teacher, Civil Rights Activist; and Actress has had on persons throughout the world. Dr. Angelou passed quietly in her home on May 28, 2014.

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Dr. Angelou’s poems and books have inspired millions of persons throughout the world, in particular her autobiography “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” about her early life overcoming racism and trauma by turning to the written word. She has been quoted as saying: “My mission in life is not merely to survive – but to thrive – and to do so with some passion – some compassion – some humor – and some style.”

THE VIDEO SHOWING HIGHLIGHTS OF 2011 DEDICATION

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There is nothing quite like experiencing the beauty of spring weeks before nature intended it to arrive! Each year we provide that opportunity for visitors as Butchart brings spring indoors in their signature Spring Prelude indoor garden. Staff spend months planning, growing and forcing plants into bloom to form an incredible indoor garden experience.

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They like to challenge themselves to try to improve what they present in the garden and the same holds true for the Spring Prelude display. This year you will notice a striking change to the display as soon as you walk through the front door as there is a new water feature to greet. Another highlight is many more orchids from theircollection as their exotic presence seems to delight people. We’ll leave the rest of the changes as a surprise for you to discover as it would be a shame to give too much away.

HERE IS A VIDEO I MADE ABOUT MY EXPERIENCE AT BUTCHART GARDENS

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