It is the season of new beginnings. We usher in the excitement of 2018 by featuring 5 spectacular destinations to visit from around the world this spring season.

Many songs have been written about the springtime in Paris, and for good reasons: gorgeous sunshine, buzzing sidewalk cafés, and blooming gardens. Paris’ amazing spring weather combined with its gardens in bloom make for the perfect scene to indulge in the finest outdoor pleasures that the City of Light has to offer. From world-famous parks and busy street markets to festivals and savvy sidewalk cafes, there’s plenty to look forward to and do in Paris. Springtime in the capital of love comes with rewarding gifts and lots of entertaining opportunities.

As Audrey once said, “Paris is always a good idea”. And while each season has its own unique charisma in the City of Love, we can all agree that spring is a wonderful time to explore Paris and stroll beneath its tranquil blue skies, and take in the culture, history, and scenery of this magical place. Just right after the winter thawing and the summer crowds, Paris exudes a special excitement of elegance and freshness. Its streets come alive along with the city’s exquisite parks and gardens as they bloom with vivid colors.

From the Luxembourg Gardens to the Buttes-Chaumont, Paris boasts an impressive array of green areas where you can stroll, picnic, and indulge in all sorts of outdoor activities. Exploring the city’s collection of parks is also a great way to learn about its history while soaking up the fascinating lifestyle of the Parisian.

Don’t miss the Garden of Plants – France’s main botanical garden; the alluring Jardin des Tuileries; the inspiring Parc Monceau – with its English-style layout; and the futuristic Parc Andre Citroen. Explore also “The lungs of Paris” – Bois de Vincennes and Bois de Boulogne, two delightful expanses of nature on the city’s outskirts.

Situated half way between Christchurch and Queenstown, sits Lake Tekapo. This lake is just one of the three in the Mackenzie Basin, the super trio that offer an absolutely rewarding experience – so it’s no surprise Tekapo is a sure thing to include in your itinerary this spring season. Lake Tekapo is one of the most striking lakes in New Zealand and perhaps in the world. The most striking feature of Lake Tekapo when you arrive is the astonishing aquamarine hue of the water. Rather, it’s blue hue is so surreal. Many lakes can appear a bright blue, usually on a nice day. The incredible feature about these 3 lakes of the Mackenzie Basin is that they’re all brilliant blue all year round. Tekapo is considered a glacier lake, where nearby glaciers grind rock into dust as they shift. Fast foward a few million years and this dust mixes with the water, thus giving it the remarkable blue hue that you see today.

Famously known as the St. Tropez of Turkey, Bodrum is definitely the place to be. Every spring, the air is sublime, rains have subsided, and most of the nearby resorts can be practically yours alone. Live a yachtsman’s fantasy at Casa dell’Arte, with your very own pier, beach and yacht for private overnight charters. While your ship is in Bodrum port, see the city’s three historical hitters. Visit the Bodrum Castle (Castle of St Peter), the picture-perfect Crusader fortress perched between the city’s two bays. Peek at its dungeons and roam its Museum of Underwater Archaeology, riddled with ancient shipwrecks and underwater treasures. Then end your journey at the mighty ruins of Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, and the massive Bodrum Amphitheater, both dating back from the 4th century BC.

Simply the best spring garden in the whole world! Imagine a place that is synonymous to words like tulips, spring and flowers. It can only be Keukenhof – a name that brings nothing short of excitement during the spring season! With over 7 million bulbs in full bloom every spring, it is without a doubt a unique and unforgettable destination.

Be amazed with a breathtaking 32 hectares of flowers as far as your eyes can see. Spectacular flower shows, inspirational gardens, cutting-edge art and unique events all in one location. Keukenhof is a dream destination for the whole family. Let your children venture in a the treasure hunt, petting farm and maze.

This year, Keukenhof’s theme will be “Romance in Flowers.” A title that best fits its nature since the two are symbolically linked together. Most visitors call it “the most beautiful spring park in the world” with its oceans of flowers that easily puts you in a romantic mood.

This historic park was designed halfway through the Romantic period of 1857 as an ornamental garden for Castle Keukenhof. Ever since 1950, millions of tulips have blossomed in the atmosphere of this garden and throughout its gorgeous vistas and centuries-old trees. This romantic tulip garden is also one of the most sought after spots for men to propose to their loved ones. This year, the rose show will be bigger than ever, since the red rose being the symbol of true love. 2018 will see Keukenhof once again feature a wonderful tulip mosaic that higlights over 50,000 bulbs.

Keukenhof will be open from 22 March – 13 May 2018. Do not miss the Tulip mania exhibition at the Juliana Pavilion. The Keukenhof season will then conclude with Romance at Keukenhof, a classical music festival that will take place amid the park’s tulips.

During spring, you’ll find some of the most inviting weather of the year plus fewer crowds; the snowbirds have flown back to the mainland, and summer vacation has yet to hit. This means that apart from gorge beaches, lush greeneries, and famous resorts, you’ll find great activities for spring just waiting for your arrival at Maui.

If you’re a nature lover, then Maui’s winter whale watching season extends well into the month of March. Humpback whales migrate towards Hawaii’s much warmer waters for the winter months, and the official Maui whale-watching season is usually from the middle of December to mid-May with the peak months of whale sightings at January to March. Whale watching cruises are also a convenient way to see these gigantic creatures.

There is also the Lahaina Whale and Ocean Arts Festival. Two days of fun and festivities that boasts live entertainment, children’s games, promotions from various participating whale research organizations, and several booths displaying ocean-themed art that are for sale – definitely one of the most popular things to do on Maui during spring.

Lastly, there is the Prince Kuhio Festival. Since, the Hawaiian Islands were previously ruled under a monarchy, Hawaii still honors its great royalty as a part of its rich culture and history. Prince Kuhio Day which falls on March 26 is officially a State holiday remembering Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole. This annual festival in Lahaina honors Prince Kuhio with traditional Hawaiian music, the hula, and locally-made arts and crafts. Definitely a must-see this spring season.

Wainibau Waterfall at the end of Lavena Coastal Walk on Taveuni Island, Fiji is truly a magical place to be this spring. Taveuni is the third largest island of Fiji. The Lavena Coastal Walk and Waterfall is part of the Bouma National Heritage Park project that aims at conserving both the rainforest and the Vanua Bouma.  Visitors can look forward to swimming and picnicking while forest bathing in this magnificent place. Other activities include camping and overnight trekking where guides are supplied for walks and village visits. The walk is rated “Easy to Moderate” which is perfect for people of almost all ages and abilities.

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