Wanderer August 2015
YHA The Wanderer
YHA The Wanderer
 

 

 
The Wanderer, Issue 32, August 2015
 
  International Edition
 
 
Hello and welcome to the International Edition of The Wanderer. When you join YHA, you get automatic membership of Hostelling International (HI) and access to 4,000 hostels worldwide. In celebration, we’ve picked four hostels in far flung places to showcase the diversity of HI’s offering. There’s a whole world out there, now let’s go and explore it.
 
Prefer a staycation? You’ll find plenty of inspiration in The Wanderer archive.
 
Map  
 
 
Canada – HI Canmore
 
 
Canada – HI Canmore
 
  Knockout scenery that pulls no punches  
 
 
First stop the Rocky Mountains! If you’re outdoorsy, then, of the four hostels featured here, this is the dream destination. Situated 4.5km out of Canmore town, in a sunny spot overlooking the Bow Valley on the eastern boundary of Banff National Park you’ll find the ACC Canmore Clubhouse. And it’s awesome!
 
 
 
Canada – HI Canmore
 
Canada – HI Canmore
 
Whether you come for the skiing and ice climbing in winter, or the hiking and mountain biking in summer, this alpine base is the ideal place to immerse yourself in mountain culture. The view from almost every window is breathtaking, and outside you’ll find the magnificent Three Sisters – a trio of peaks that have inspired generations of artists.
 
The town of Canmore itself has a vibrant downtown and you’ll find a host of activities happening throughout the year. Canmore Nordic Centre boasts world-class mountain biking and cross country skiing, while Elevation Place has a huge indoor climbing gym and swimming pool.
 
Able to accommodate everyone from solo adventurers to small expeditions, HI Canmore attracts the like-minded and the community-spirited. Want to know where to explore? Just ask the person next to you at dinner or relax in the cosy living room and share an anecdote or two in front of the fire. After 10pm a peaceful hush falls over the cabins as this is the kind of place where people retire early and rise before dawn to make the very most of the daylight hours.
 
  book now  
 
 
 
 
 
Insider tips:
 
 
  1  
Hire a mountain bike (or borrow one of our six bikes for free) and bike to Banff. The Rocky Mountain Legacy Trail is a 26 km paved pathway following the highway from Canmore to our more famous sister mountain town. The experienced mountain biker will enjoy a full day of biking the Goat Creek Trail to Banff and returning on the Legacy Trail, circumnavigating Mount Rundle in the process.
 
 
  2  
Take a break from winter skiing and hike 30 minutes up Grotto Canyon. Instep crampons on your boots will keep you from sliding on your bum on the frozen creek (unless that’s what you’re looking for…) and ancient native pictographs and frozen waterfalls add some serious awe factor.
 
 
  3  
Explore inside Grotto Mountain with a natural history cave tour. Rat’s Nest Cave is an undeveloped (no lights, no walkways) link of caverns 10 minutes from our hostel. As the weather never changes underground, this is a year-round adventure.
 
 
 
 
 
Slovenia – Pod Voglom
 
 
Slovenia – Pod Voglom
 
  Europe's best kept secret  
 
 
As everyone who has been to this astonishing country knows, the first rule of Slovenia holidays is that you don’t talk about Slovenia holidays. Why? Because you don’t really want anyone else to go. The landscape here is pristine, unsullied, enchanting, varied and oh so very special.
 
 
 
Slovenia – Pod Voglom
 
Slovenia – Pod Voglom
 
Since Slovenia is the size of Wales, it’s possible to cover much of the country on a week-long road trip, journeying from alpine peak to emerald-tinted lake via the alabaster architecture of Europe’s greenest capital. But of all the wonderful places to go in Slovenia, we’ve chosen to focus on Pod Voglom in Bohinjsko Jezero – a simply stunning stay if you’re out for adventure.
 
Located in Triglav National Park on the shores of lovely Lake Bohinj, Slovenia’s largest youth hostel boasts a fantastic activity centre. So, whether you want to hurl yourself down waterfalls on a canyoning excursion, reach dizzying heights on the high rope course in the backyard, go subterranean on a caving adventure, hurtle down snow-covered slopes in winter or go sightseeing via tandem paraglider, Pod Voglom offers it all.
 
There’s plenty to amuse patrons preferring a more pedestrian pace too. Rent a canoe or mountain bike and explore in your own time, or relax indoors with a game of table football, table tennis or billiards.
 
Regular buses stop outside the hostel and offer cheap transportation to Ljubljana, the capital, and Lake Bled which is peerlessly picturesque, a tourist hotspot and home to a tiny baroque chapel surrounded by clear cyan waters.
 
Now shhh, don’t tell anyone about this, will you.
 
  book now  
 
 
 
 
 
Insider tips:
 
 
  1  
Don’t miss Slap Savica. With water plunging 78 metres into the crystal clear pool below, the jewel in the crown of the Bohinj valley is Slovenia’s most impressive waterfall and truly a sight to behold.
 
 
  2  
Go trekking in the Triglav National Park – options are endless but if you only have one day then the Voje valley is a must.
 
 
  3  
Rent a bike and make a circuit around the traditional Bohinj villages – in 2 hours you will get the best view of Bohinj.
 
 
 
 
 
Win an adventure of a lifetime
 
  Win an adventure of a lifetime  
 
 
Fancy a free trip to Vietnam? Enter our BEST EVER prize draw and you could win a holiday for two on Intrepid Travel’s 11-day Vietnam Discovery (TVRN). Winners will travel the local way, eat the local way and sleep the local way as they journey from Ho Chi Minh City in the south to Hanoi in the north, discovering the eastern coastline’s many attractions along the way. To enter, please see our website for details.*
 
 
 
 
 
 
Netherlands – Stayokay Ameland
 
 
Netherlands – Stayokay Ameland
 
  A sliver of serenity surrounded by sea  
 
 
Think of a holiday destination in the Netherlands. We bet Ameland wasn’t your first thought. But if you’re looking for space, peace and a seemingly endless stretch of white sand coast upon which to stay and play, then this island in the Wadden Sea could be your perfect pick.
 
 
 
Netherlands – Stayokay Ameland
 
Netherlands – Stayokay Ameland
 
Surrounded by woods, sand and plenty of land, Stayokay Ameland sits in a hollow in the dunes just 500m back from a 27km beach. Long walks, searching for sea shells, sea swimming, sunbathing, kite-flying and horse riding are just a few of the activities the coast has to offer.
 
The entire Wadden Sea area is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site as it’s the world’s largest unbroken system of intertidal sand and mudflats. Not surprisingly Ameland is a wildlife paradise, and enthusiasts will find plenty of interest here.
 
Culturally, there’s a lot to see and do too. First port of call has to be the Bornrif Lighthouse. Built in 1880, this impressive structure houses floors of fascinating exhibitions. Plus, at 55 feet high, the 236-step climb to the top rewards you with a very special view. Next, visit the Cultural Historical Museum Sorgdrager in Hollum to find out about Ameland life through the ages. In high season, tours around Hollum’s historic sites begin here too.
 
The hostel itself offers welcoming social spaces, plenty of comfortable en-suite rooms, outdoor play areas and a restaurant with a reputation for magnificent breakfast buffets. Here’s to a stress-free stay for all the family.
 
  book now  
 
 
 
 
 
Insider tips:
 
 
  1  
Hire a bike directly from the hostel and pedal your way around the wonderful trails in nearby woodland. Hostel staff will be more than happy to offer tips on where to ride.
 
 
  2  
There’s plenty of opportunity for the kids to blow off steam on the playground out front. Grab a ball from reception to shoot some hoops or have a kick about. It’s easy-going here with an emphasis on fun.
 
 
  3  
Venture a little further afield to Ballum and visit Nobel’s Nostalgic Museum. Classic cars, antique bikes, musical instruments, shop interiors, fashion and household goods demonstrate what life used to look like.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cotswold Outdoors
 
 
Escape, explore
 
Whether you’re jetting off to experience the hidden treasures of a faraway city, or for a challenging trip of a lifetime – from insect-repellent clothing and quick drying layers to travel accessories and luggage, we have all the kit you’ll need. Wherever your adventures take you around the globe, explore it in both comfort and style.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
YHA Day returns! 5th and 6th September 2015
 
  YHA Day returns! 5th and 6th September 2015  
 
 
Hostels all over the network are getting ready to welcome one and all through their doors over YHA Day weekend. For the third year running we’ll be putting on outdoor activities, BBQs, live music, tasty cake and summer fêtes. Plus nine hostels will host a YHA Pop-up Charity Shop selling new-to-you glamour and second-hand style, all in aid of Breaks for Kids. There are over 100 hostels taking part, so take a look at the free fun planned at a hostel near you.
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Help us protect our National Parks  
 
 
We’re keen as mustard to make sure you receive stuff you’re actually interested in. To do this we need to know more about our members and their interests. So, if you’ve yet to tell us you’re more rambler than road biker, climber than culture vulture then please do complete our quick and easy interest survey. As a sign of our appreciation we’ll give you 10% off your next overnight stay. Thanks!
 
Click here to tell us more about you.***
 
Help us protect our National Parks
 
 
 
 
 
 
Next month:
 
   
 
  The Small Budget Big Experience Edition  
 
 
September’s edition will see a return to home soil and our first ever budget holiday edition. We’ve challenged four travel writers to stay with us on a small budget to see how much fun they can have with just a little cash. Join us next month to discover how big their adventures turn out to be.
 
 
 
Next month
 
 
 
 
Find out how were changing the lives one stay at a time
 
Because YHA is a charity, when you stay with us you’re helping keep prices affordable, hostels beautiful and you’re even enriching the lives of young people. Find out more.
 
Find out how were changing the lives one stay at a time
 
 
 
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