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10 Amazing Countries That Perfectly Fit Budget Travelers

10 Amazing Countries That Perfectly Fit Budget Travelers

You want to travel but you are hesitant because you don’t think you can do it on a budget. There are many awesome countries you can visit that happen to budget-friendly as well. I have been fortunate enough to live in Europe for the better part of eight years, and in that time I have traveled much of the continent. While many countries in Europe are expensive there are some that are reasonably priced. Most of this list will focus on Europe because I don’t think people realize how cheap you can travel throughout Europe especially if you do away with the hotels and stay in hostels.

1. Greece

Sunset in Oia, Santorini. Here is my version of the sunset shot in Oia. This is a blend of 3 shots, 1.3 to 20 seconds, processed as follows: 1) Reduce noice on all 3 raws. 2) Create HRD in Photomatix 3) Blend using Exposure Fusion, sliders set to produce the most natural looking image while still showing some detail in the very dark areas. 4) PS smart sharpen. 5) PS burn the bottom 6) Nik Brilliance and warming 7) Nik Indian summer to warm th elights, masked to not affect the rest. 8) Nik sunlight, brushed over the buildings to add more light 9) Nik Glamour Glow to remove detail in the dark areas. 10) Detailed curves lightening pn windmills. 11) Dodge buildings that were too dark.

    The economic crisis has turned off some travelers from visiting but plenty of people are taking advantage of Greece’s scenic landscape and economical fares. Visit all the ancient ruins in Athens (there are a lot of them) for only $15. Enjoy specialty foods such as souvlaki and Greek salad or indulge in an Ouzo or Tsipouro drink. As a budget traveler, I lived off chicken souvlaki and Greek salad the entire week I was there. The food was delicious and the prices were hard to beat. Plus, you can view one of the most amazing sunsets in Santorini for free!

    2. Turkey

    Istanbul

      What’s unique about visiting Turkey is that it’s one of the only transcontinental countries or country that is in two continents. So you can visit Istanbul or another city within the European mainland and then take a ferry ride across the Bosphorus or Dardanelles strait into Asiatic Turkey, otherwise known as Anatolia or Asia Minor. I was stoked when I arrived in Istanbul to experience the variety of cultures and religions that make up this beautiful city. I was equally thrilled when I found out all I had to do was hop on a ferry boat for about an hour and I would be in the Asian part of this serene country. The best part was how inexpensive it was to explore history. Additionally, a kebab made with chicken or lamb meat is only going to cost you $1 or $2. A simit, a kind of Turkish bread usually eaten for breakfast, is even cheaper and my personal favorite, lahmacun or Turkish pizza, is very reasonably priced.

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      3. Morocco

      Jemaa-el-Fna-squre-in-Marrakesh-Morocco

        A short plane ride from Western Europe will land you in this incredible country. I didn’t know what to expect when I visited this African nation but I was happily satisfied with my experience. Unlike in Istanbul, visiting the local mosques is not possible for non-Muslims besides a couple exceptions. Regardless, there is a lot to see in this country, and in most cases it is free of charge or very inexpensive. There are two-day Sahara desert tours that leave from Fez and Marrakech that are as cheap as $65 per person. If I would have had more time there I would have definitely taken advantage of this.

        4. Hungary

        Budapest

          I put on Hungary on this list for the simple fact that I am biased towards Budapest. I have not traveled much outside of Budapest, but I was immediately drawn to this city, and I didn’t want to leave. The vibe of the city is enticing and inviting at the same time. Everything was cheap there from the food to the beer; especially the beer. $2 for a 24-ounce beer is a heck of a deal. It is easy to get around the city on foot or by public transportation. I would stray away from taxi drivers because they tend to gouge tourists. I would suggest that a budget traveler visit one of the local spa baths. The prices vary depending on the spa but reasonably-priced ones will cost you about $10.

          5. Germany

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          Brandenburg-Gate-Berlin1

            Germany is a huge country with lots to see. Unfortunately, it gets a bad rap for being too expensive for the budget traveler. I think most of this stems from some of the major attractions in the bigger cities in the country. But even some of the most popular German attractions are economical to experience. For example, Brandenburg Gate (Brandenburger Tor) which separated East Berlin from West Berlin during the time of the Berlin Wall is free of charge. You simply walk up the stairs from the underground station and there it is.

            The point is — don’t sleep on Germany as a place to travel to on a budget. There are many convenient and cheap restaurants or food places to buy famous German specialties. Beer is very cheap as well probably because Germans love their beer and they want to share it with as many people as possible. Train travel within the country is relatively cheap especially if you do your homework early and order tickets as soon as you know where you are travelling.

            6. Croatia

            Zagreb

              I haven’t spent a lot of time in this beautiful country but I was really impressed with what I saw. I was especially excited about how cheap it was to eat and drink. I spent most of my time in the capital city of Zagreb. There is a lot of history to go along with an amazing culinary culture. If you go to Zagreb or anywhere else in Croatia you have to try some cepavici, a traditional meat dish. Travelling to Split and other spots near the Adriatic Sea are reasonable and worthwhile. Dubrovnik is very nice as well but be careful of the prices there because it is not so budget-friendly.

              7. Estonia

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              Tallinn

                I have been fortunate enough to visit Tallinn, Estonia’s capital and largest city, on a few occasions. I love Northern Europe and would suggest that anyone visit these lands if they have the time and the money.  Visiting Estonia is much cheaper than other countries in Northern Europe. There is a significant Russian influence, reminiscent of its time as a member of the Soviet Union. But I found this influence to be interesting and not predominant. Eating out and enjoying the night life are very reasonable as long as you stray away from the tourist stops right in the center of town. There are some really cool medieval castles that are worth seeing as a budget traveler.

                8. Italy

                venice_2304966b

                  Italy has so many places to see, and like Germany, the pricing of the country can vary depending on which places you visit. Yet, you can definitely travel to Italy on a budget. Even an expensive tourist city such as Venice and Rome can be visited by a budget traveler. It goes without saying that Italian food is delicious but it is also reasonable as well. You haven’t truly eaten pizza until you eat in Italy. Take advantage of the differences in the northern and southern cuisines. If you are into beach life than Italy is a great place to visit. Italians know how to enjoy their beaches and the best part is that they are free.

                  9. Spain

                  18-malaga-4

                    Simple ways to save money in Spain include opting for buses and metro stations as opposed to trains. It is not always the easiest way to get around but it will save you a lot of money, plus you get to really absorb yourself into the Spanish culture. Also, focus your meals on breakfast and lunch because typically these meals are much cheaper than dinner. I’m not saying you shouldn’t have dinner, rather that you should make sure you eat much bigger breakfasts and lunches. Bigger cities like Barcelona and Madrid are great spots to visit but there are also many smaller cities like Malaga and Marbella that are nice as well.

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                    10. Bulgaria

                    Sofia_Bulgaria

                      I have yet to visit but I hear this place is a hidden gem for budget traveling. I look forward to visiting the capital city Sofia or perhaps enjoying one of the cheaply-priced boat cruises.

                      You can travel almost anywhere on a budget. It takes a lot of planning and a sense of adventure. If you are willing to stay in hostels and explore places on your own, sans tour guide, than you can travel cheaply. You can still enjoy the local fair without spending an arm and a leg in expensive restaurants.

                      Featured photo credit: Topwalls via topwalls.net

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                      Mike Oppland

                      Mike is the Creator of Carpe Diem Motivation. He aspires to inspire individuals who are seeking a little extra boost in their lives.

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                      Last Updated on August 12, 2019

                      12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

                      12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

                      Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

                      But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

                      I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

                      Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

                      1. Nuts

                      The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

                      Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

                      Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

                      Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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                      2. Blueberries

                      Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

                      When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

                      3. Tomatoes

                      Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

                      4. Broccoli

                      While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

                      Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

                      Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

                      5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

                      Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

                      The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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                      Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

                      6. Soy

                      Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

                      Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

                      Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

                      7. Dark Chocolate

                      When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

                      Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

                      8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

                      Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

                      B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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                      Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

                      Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

                      To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

                      9. Foods Rich in Zinc

                      Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

                      Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

                      Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

                      10. Gingko Biloba

                      This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

                      It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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                      However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

                      11. Green and Black Tea

                      Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

                      Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

                      Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

                      12. Sage and Rosemary

                      Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

                      Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

                      When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

                      More About Boosting Brain Power

                      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                      Reference

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