Colors: Blue Color

Costa Rica is fast increasing in popularity with Europeans, in large part because of new direct flights from Germany and France, and with BA from Gatwick, all introduced in 2016. Most of the wildlife visitors see in Costa Rica are of the mammalian and avian kinds, but now Reef & Rainforest (specialists in Costa Rica for over 25 years) are offering a group tour led by the BBC's favourite avuncular entomologist, Dr George McGavin.

Following much anticipation, Saturday 10 December saw the Grand Opening Party of Hard Rock Hotel Tenerife as it officially launched in the Canary Islands. Bringing the spirit of the 80s to Hard Rock Hotel Tenerife's open-air stage located next to a new stunning freshwater lagoon, the glam Grand Opening Party injected a dose of glitter, fluorescent colour, and disco classics to Tenerife's coastline in celebration of Europe's second Hard Rock Hotel.

Waterloo continues to top the list of Britain’s busiest stations with almost 100 million journeys in 2015/16. London dominates in the top 10 busiest stations. Birmingham New Street is the exception, ranking as the country’s seventh busiest station.  There has been one ‘new entry’ to the most used stations this year, with Clapham Junction replacing Charing Cross at number 10.

“He outmatched the achievements of all kings who came before him” wrote Ramses II about himself in an inscription at the famous Amun Temple in Luxor. He went down in the history of ancient Egypt with the name “Ramses the Great”. The Badisches Landesmuseum in Karlsruhe has created a large cultural and historical special exhibition dedicated to the famous pharaoh – the first comprehensive exhibition since the Ramses Exhibition in Paris 40 years ago. From 17th December 2016 through to 18th June 2017 visitors can view around 250 exhibits from museums all over the world.           

After announcing its long-term commitment to tackle climate change and reduce carbon emissions, Hamad International Airport in Qatar is celebrated its successful renewal of the ACI (Airports Council International) Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) programme, which includes a target to improve carbon efficiency by 30% by 2030 along with a series of initiatives to help save energy and optimize the consumption of vehicle fuel.

While most of us in the Northern Hemisphere associate Christmas with wrapping up warm, hanging up stockings on the fireplace, roasting chestnuts and drinking mulled wine, those Down-Under are in peak summer and Christmas cheer is more sunshine celebrations than frosty festivities.

Secretary-General Patricia Scotland has told an audience at the Transparency International-UK Anti-Corruption Lecture 2016 in London that corruption ‘is a scourge which holds in thrall millions of our Commonwealth sisters and brothers, condemning them to servitude, poverty, disease, indignity and misery’. Secretary-General Scotland said that she has worked with Transparency International formally and informally over the years and that she would continue to do so ‘as long as corruption continues to spread its poison’.

A delegation from Takhat Sri Harmandir Ji, Patna Sahib met with the Honourable Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi at Parliament House, to invite him to attend the 350th Prakash Purb of Guru Gobind Singh Ji at the Takhat Sahib, during the first week of January 2017. The Prime Minister gladly accepted the invite to attend. The Prime Minister mentioned that the Central Government would look to work with the Bihar State Government regarding long term development plans beneficial to Patna City residents.

Macao is getting ready to host its first ever International Film Festival and Awards (IFFAM), which will take place between the 8th and 13th of December 2016. Spanning six consecutive days, the event will showcase the best of Asian and international cinema with a programme of film premieres and screenings for both Asian and Western film, red-carpet presentations, industry events, masterclasses and an awards ceremony. A partnership with the British Film Institute (BFI) will see young film makers from Macao making a short film that will premiere during the festival.

At the World Travel Awards Grand Final 2016, the Middle Eastern hospitality giant, Katara Hospitality took the title of Worlds Leading Hospitality Company during the glittering event at The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi in the Maldives. In front of an audience of over 250 leaders in the hospitality industry from around the world, recognised alongside Katara was Etihad Airways taking World's Leading Airline for the eighth time in succession.

Internationally acclaimed artist Bruce Munro's immersive installation, Field of Light Uluru, is a sell-out global phenomenon, demanding the extension of the exhibition to a second season, and will now continue to delight guests until 31 March 2018. The award-winning exhibition, at Ayers Rock Resort in the spiritual heart of Australia, opened to critical acclaim in April and has exceeded all expectations, proving to be a stand-out drawcard to the destination.

Interest is building for next year's Caribbean Travel Marketplace, the Caribbean's largest marketing event which will take place at Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas from January 31 to February 2, 2017. Produced by the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), in collaboration with the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, the Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association, the Nassau/Paradise Island Promotion Board and the Paradise Island Tourism Development Association, the event features two days of business meetings that match buyers and suppliers through a busy program of thousands of pre-scheduled appointments.

The Commonwealth will chart a course to decrease violence against women – one of the biggest problems facing humanity - Secretary-General Patricia Scotland has told experts. Speaking at an event at Commonwealth Headquarters, the Secretary-General will advocate for a multi-sector approach to tackling the issue. She will lay out a package of measures, including legal, educational and health resources that governments can use to protect women and girls from violence.

Hostelling is perfect for Hogmanay, offering excellent value, the camaraderie of sharing experiences and an invigorating start to the New Year. The Independent Hostelling Sector in Scotland has a range of options throughout Scotland still available for Hogmanay and New Year with 15 unique suggested stays located from City Centres to far flung islands.

Alpine Italy lights up for the Christmas season with some of the most interesting Christmas Markets on offer in Europe, combining Mediterranean flavours and German traditions, festive food and wine, gift ideas, decorations and local handicraft.

Costa Rica, already officially the happiest country in the world, must be grinning away because sustainable just got sexy.  The United Nations has declared 2017 the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, and this global leader in sustainability has just found itself the perfect opportunity to flaunt its most enviably gorgeous eco-resorts. Costa Rica is ahead of the world, producing nearly 93 percent of its electricity from renewable resources and conserving almost 30 percent of its national territory.