Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Urban Parks

Ueno Park

During the warm summer months getting outdoors is an imperative. But sometimes when you live in the middle of a big city, it’s hard to know where to go. Here are Linoto’s top picks for the world’s best urban parks. If you can, go and see one of them today!

1. Luxembourg Gardens (Paris, France): Featuring a large population of statues, this Paris treasure is a wonder to behold. A seventeenth century fountain and a pond for model sailboats make this park renowned for a calm and peaceful atmosphere.

2. Central and Prospect Parks (New York, New York): Both of these urban getaways, in the hearts of Manhattan and Brooklyn respectively, were designed by Frederick Law Olmstead and Calvert Vaux. The many and varied tunnels that seamlessly connect each of the parks’ splendid landscapes, were designed with the intention that each view would be like a framed photograph.

3. Ueno Park (Tokyo Japan): This large public space contains museums, concert halls as well as several shrines. The zoo and the park’s peaceful pond make this one of the world’s most frequented parks.

4. Park Guell (Barcelona, Spain): Antoni Gaudi, arguably Spain’s most celebrated architect, designed this artistic masterpiece. The structures designed with intricate and colorful mosaic tiles are surrounded by grassy knolls and fantastic city views.

5. Golden Gate Park (San Francisco, CA): A whopping 1,017 acres of public space, Golden Gate Park contains botanical gardens, a zoo and endless rolling green hills. An easy place to get lost, this urban park can make you forget that just around the bend, a city continues to rumble.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Beach Bicycling

Who doesn’t hope to get to the beach at least once every summer? Once there, we will laze on our beach chairs drinking iced lemonade, getting sand in our hair and hiding under our Jackie O hats. Our linen towels falling away, there is ample time to run in the surf.

This year, we recommend reaching back to a little burst of childhood on your beach vacation: Ride a bike! Beach hoppers can be rented in almost every beach town if you can’t be bothered to bring your own.

Nothing parallels the feeling of the salty wind on your face as you pedal effortlessly from adorable beach town to adorable beach town. Make sure you stock up on salt water taffy and sample the rich frozen custard if you are pedaling on the East Coast. If you pedal up or down the West Coast, sample the bounty of the vineyards or enjoy the fresh fruit smoothies.

Or, if the nearest beach is a lake, great or small, make sure you pack a fresh lunch in your bike basket and picnic on a boat dock under the setting sun.