You have to sing this song to wash your hands for 20 seconds

Washing hands is important to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. If you really want to wash your hands properly, you have to wash them for at least 20 seconds. Of course, we don’t want to count to 20 every time and there’s a good chance you’ll count too fast or too slowly. There’s a solution for this now!
Oops, I Did It Again
And this solution makes hand washing a lot more fun. If you sing the chorus of Oops, I Did It Again by Britney Spears, that’s exactly 20 seconds.
Coronavirus
A Twitter user found out about this and shared it with the world. Who would have thought that a britney spears song would help us fight the coronavirus. From now on, sing this song en masse while washing hands!

 

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Coronavirus outbreak: A major cause is wildlife trade

Looks like an animal is the source of the corona outbreak among humans. If we are to prevent another epidemic, we must stop acting in wild animals immediately. Simone Eckhart, director of the Dutch foundation SPOTS, tells you why.
We’re in the middle of the corona crisis. The wry thing is that it’s not the first time the world has faced such a deadly virus. SARS, Ebola, MERS and COVID-19 were all created by the trade in and consumption of wild animals.

About 70 percent of all new infectious diseases occur in (wild) animals. Viruses can spread because the wild animals are traded. After the SARS outbreak (2002), scientists warned that if we did not change this trade, such a virus would break out again. And even now, the scientists are warning about this again.
Spread of viruses by traditional Chinese medicines
For many people in Asia, wild animals are a delicacy. But they are also (illegally) trafficked because there is demand for their body parts in Asia. These would be beneficial against all kinds of ailments and diseases and are therefore processed in traditional Chinese medicines (TCM). Rhinos, pangolins (scaly), tigers, lions and bears are threatened with extinction.
But it is also these wild animals that can be potential causes of viruses. For example, the pangolin is probably the cause of the coronavirus. The animal would have been an ‘intermediate host’. The coronavirus originated in another animal, most likely a bat, and then switched to the scaly animal. He transferred it to people.
Many wild animals found in markets such as Wuhan, the flashpoint of the coronavirus, have been illegally pulled from the wild and can therefore carry a virus. When wild animals are bred, they often live in very poor conditions, which also facilitates virus transmission.

The pangolin is probably the cause of the coronavirus.  – Okonjima Nature Reserve and Africat
Ban on (illegal) wildlife trade
It is important that there should be a ban on (illegal) wildlife trafficking and for animal markets such as wuhan to be closed. It is precisely these markets that are potential flashpoints for virus outbreaks.
China has imposed a permanent ban on the consumption of wild animals in response to the coronavirus. Trade in these wild animals, when the target is consumption, is now prohibited. The question, however, is whether China will enforce this permanent ban. During the SARS outbreak, which also originated in a market, the government declared a ban, which was reversed when the crisis was over. In addition, there are many other countries where these types of markets still define the streetscape. So it’s choking on potential flashpoints for virus outbreaks.
Illegal wildlife trade leads to extinction and virus outbreaks
Nature organisations such as SPOTS are concerned about the (illegal) trade in wild animals. The demand from Asia for TCM, or simply because an animal is seen as a food, leads to a large (illegal) trade. This trade is a threat to animals, to the biodiversity of our world and therefore also creates health risks.
It is therefore important that the rest of the world keeps pressure on China to make the ban on wildlife trade permanent. We must also insist that wild animals are no longer processed in TCM.
Furthermore, all markets where (wild) animals are sold must be closed. This can be done, for example, through the World Health Organisation (WHO), with all the countries of the world affiliated. If we don’t do something, it’s waiting for a new virus.

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Remix by Billie Eilish goes viral with music in 8D: ‘Like it’s flying right through your brain’

A remix of singer Billie Eilish’s song Ilomilo is currently going viral on social media. Not with the ‘normal’ version, but a version in 8D. On Twitter, people are excited about the technique. “Am I the only one who looks around while listening because I think she’s standing next to me?,” it sounds.

When you listen to the music with headphones on, it looks like you hear the music in a concert hall. The technique is not entirely new. Music in 8D, or actually binaural sound, has been around for much longer. But thanks to a remix by Billie Eilish, the general public is introduced to the technique. The song goes around like wildfire on social media.
This remix by Billie doesn’t come from the singer herself. The piece of music is believed to come from a YouTuber who uploaded it in 2019. It’s not clear why it’s going viral again, although social distancing would play a part during the corona crisis, reports some Twitter users: there’s a need for a party.
Headphones
It really matters that you listen to the music with earplugs or headphones, otherwise the effect doesn’t work. When you listen to the song, it looks like the music comes from everywhere. You can hear the music spinning around your head, as it were.
On social media people are very excited about this ‘new’ find. “As if it were blowing from the left, right, around you and flying right through your brain,” writes Boris de Groot. Another Twitter user wonders if she’s the only one who looks around while listening because it looks like Eilish is singing next to her.
There are an awful lot of songs in ‘8D’ Available. Almost all songs involve original tracks that have been converted to the 8D variant with software. How the technique behind 8D music works is extensively demonstrated in this Youtube video.
Listen to the song here, with earplugs in:

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5 great travel initiatives for the couch (so you can still see some of the world)

Sitting down with the suits is always possible. Especially at this difficult time, it is important to keep busy. These special initiatives make your home insulation a home exploration.

1. Go on a virtual journey
Fly in a helicopter over Greenland, ride in a tuktuk through India and witness a volcanic eruption on Kamchatka. Thanks to the virtual journeys of Air Pano and Google, you become even more in love with the world – even now that the world is locked. For more videos, look at airpano.com and artsandculture.google.com
2. Enjoy a delicious meal with local produce
While local food products are struggling, supermarket consumers are just not getting the last bag of rice. By purchasing the Support Your Locals shopping package, you put the best artisan snacks on the table and also support the producer. Among others in Amsterdam and Utrecht. A box costs € 45 and is delivered sustainably.
3. Take birding as a new hobby
The bird whistle around us is increasing. How cool would it be to recognize those bird sounds? Bird Protection Netherlands has recently been offering a free online bird course. Each episode focuses on one (garden) bird. Thanks to the special webcams of Experience the Spring, it is also possible to watch live in the nest. Gain practical experience? Hang a fat ball in your garden and see what comes next.
4. Finally make that photo album
In the category of “tasks you haven’t gotten to yet”: create a photo album from your travel photos. With Albelli’s app, you can create the ultimate photo album without scissors or paste.
5. Create a lasting travel reminder
Many trips are so impressive that you would like to frame them. That’s possible. Choose reisposter.nl the tan and size, and have your favorite country, city or itinerary printed as a travel poster.

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Keukenhof won’t open this year

The ‘most beautiful spring park in the world’, the Keukenhof, will no longer open this year. Now that the RIVM guidelines have been extended until 1 June, the flower park in Lisse sees no possibility to receive any public this year, reports Omroep West. The Keukenhof has therefore only shared these images on YouTube. Take a look at the most beautiful spots in the park at the moment:

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Watch out: Android apps with information about corona hacking your smartphone

There are several corona apps in circulation that hack Android devices. The apps provide information about the virus, but steal your login credentials undetected or can remotely turn on your device’s microphone or camera.

One of these apps is the so-called CoronaVirus Tracker, an Android app that allows you to monitor the outbreak of the virus on your street. It is just not possible to look at street level where there are corona infections. The criminals behind the app are trying to respond to the fear of citizens.
Lock your phone
As soon as you install the app, you’ll see a big button to scan the environment on the coronavirus. For this, the app requires access to certain parts of your phone. As soon as your CoronaVirus Tracker gives permission for that, the app locks your device and asks for a ransom. The app is basically ransomware. It’s only when you pay $250 that you’ll regain access to your apps, photos, and messages.

The criminals were just a little lazy allowing the code to regain access to the device just in the ransomware is clogged. If your phone is locked by CoronaVirus Tracker you can enter the code 4865083501, discovered security company Sophos. You will then regain access to your device and you can manually remove the app from your smartphone.
Read along with your posts
The Android app Corona Live, which provides up-to-date statistics on the virus, is actually spyware that allows an attacker to access your phone. The app works as you might expect, with figures on the number of infections and deaths, but then slowly requires more and more access to parts of your phone, think of your messages, camera and microphone.

The app appears to be particularly victims in Libya, leading security company Lookout to suspect there are Libyan criminals behind it. Although the app is aimed at this country, it is also possible for Dutch users to install the app. Corona Live is available in English.
By removing the app from your device, the hacker also loses access to your phone.
Send spam to your contacts
Another Android app, Corona Safety Mask, promises to send you a free mouthcap when you install the app. If you do, the app will then request access to all your contacts and the ability to read and send text messages.
If you give that access, the app will send spam messages to all your contacts on your behalf. The spam message directs people to a website where people can download the same app.

Security company Zscaler notes that the criminals behind the app mainly send spam, but that it is likely that malware will eventually be installed on smartphones or credit card information will be stolen.
Cyber criminals are targeting Android users as more Android smartphones are used worldwide. In addition, malware and other viruses make it easier to infect an Android device because users can install apps outside of Google Play.
How to protect yourself from Android viruses
Download only apps from Google Play. Google’s app store isn’t perfect, but it significantly reduces the likelihood of you downloading a virus.
Keep an eye on the permissions that apps demand. Does a corona app need access to your microphone, camera, photos or text messages? The answer is probably no, and don’t give that access.
Think carefully if what the app promises is realistic. You can’t see the number of corona infections at street level, for example.
Make sure you’ve turned off install from Unknown Sources in security settings (that’s standard) and that Play Protect (more info) from Google Play is turned on.
Install a virus scanner for your Android, such as ESET, BitDefender, McAfee or Kaspersky. The last three also offer a free variant.
Don’t click on links you don’t trust. Or keep on: check first, then click.

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Egypt for (underwater) lovers: here you want to stay!

Mysterious Egypt is a bit like the fairy tales of 1001 nights, but when booking your holiday it sometimes seems like you can choose from as many accommodations! Where should you stay in Egypt? Don’t worry, we’ll help you get started with these top players. At these five authentic hotels in Egypt you stay right on the water!

Atmospheric residence in Egypt’s Sharm el Sheikh
In Sharm el Sheikh it is good to stay at Hotel Jaz Mirabel Park. The atmospheric complex is large, but does not do anything en masse. You can stay in one of the beautiful, spacious rooms. The quality of the meals is also well regarded at Hotel Jaz Mirabel Park: the food is considered varied and well experienced. Not surprising that many Dutch holidaymakers come back here several times, as reviewer from me: ‘Beautiful, clean rooms, good beds, friendly staff! The food is fine and plenty of choice.

Tip: discover all the beauty of Sharm el Sheikh? In terms of activities, you have a wide choice of excursions in the area. For example, take a trip across the Nile or go shopping in the lively Na’ama Bay. Sharm el Sheikh is also one of Egypt’s most beautiful diving destinations. How and what? Hotel Jaz Mirabel Park staff are happy to provide you with tips!

1001 nights at Hotel Sindbad Al Mashrabiya
We’ll stay in fairy tale atmospheres when we talk about Hotel Sindbad Al Mashrabiya. Located in the popular seaside town of Hurghada, this property is an excellent choice for the holidaymaker looking for a quiet base. Take a refreshing dip in the pool or roll out your towel on the beach. Exploring the underwater world? Hotel Sindbad Al Mashrabiya is happy to help you with your diving or snorkeling trip. After enjoying all the beauty you’ve seen you put in in your own comfortable room.

Dolphin lovers beware: Sha’ab el Erg in the north of Hurghada is known for the dolphins that are spotted there with great regularity. The reef is not very deep, so you can snorkel above the colorful coral. Besides dolphins there is many more beautiful to see! Other species you can encounter here include reef sharks, stingrays, moray eels and even turtles! If you’ve never dived before, this is also a perfect place to start diving!

Into the water at Magawish Swiss Inn Resort****
Water lovers beware: Hotel Magawish Swiss Inn Resort is an ideal base for practicing various water sports. Especially (kite) surfing and diving are among popular activities to do here. With the beach within walking distance, the enticing water is always within reach! Got hungry after all these activities? Then walk with your plate long the extensive buffet. Luxury lovers should stay somewhere else in Egypt, but when you come here mainly for the water, this resort has excellent value for money.

Diving at The Breakers Dive & Watersports Resort
Like the previous property, The Breakers Dive & Watersports Resort is also ideal for the enthusiast of an active holiday on, in or below the water surface. The complex is located in the quiet resort of Soma Bay. The rooms are modern and well maintained. Look up the cosiness of the communal seat overlooking, how else, the sea. The resort is relatively small-scale which creates a friendly atmosphere. Of course, that’s no different with all those relaxed surf types among themselves! Also an ideal base for a great diving holiday in Egypt.

 

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Why virtual bubbling with Houseparty is so in (and 4 other apps that help you with social distancing)

In times of social distancing, some apps are a convenient way to keep in touch with each other. Houseparty, an app formerly known only to young people, quickly shot to the top of the app stores. Why?

Before the Covid-19 virus crippled public life, we made sporadic video calls, through well-known apps like Skype, FaceTime, Hangouts, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Great things to communicate face-to-face with each other from a distance, and even with multiple people. But now that entire groups of friends and families are separated, a new user has signed up: Houseparty. That app was born in 2016, and quickly became popular among young people. But in corona times, he suddenly shot to the top of the App Stores on Android and iOS.

With Houseparty, you can quickly set up a video chat for up to eight people, via the smartphone selfie camera (Android or iOS) or the laptop webcam (Mac or Chromebook). Especially the ease of use of the app is striking: users who see that two or more of their friends are video chatting can jump right into the conversation.

Not planned
According to Ben Rubin, the Israeli-American founder of the app, other video chat apps are throwing too much of a threshold at the user. Houseparty, he told the American magazine Fast Company, you use “without having to plan anything. You don’t have to feel embarrassed to facetime someone.”
On the internet these days, stories about Houseparty users are abuzz with stories about Houseparty users who even use the app to organize virtual aperitif and even dinner parties with several people or couples in one chat room. How does this app, which according to the latest figures have 35 million global users, become so popular for that, while other chat apps (such as Zoom and Skype) may as well allow group chats? It’s mostly in the perks.

Living room of the Internet
For example, you can jump smoothly from group chat to group chat when friends of yours participate: so there are often different ‘rooms’ open. You can also send video messages (face mails) with it for participants who are not (yet) online. And there are games in it that you can play in a group, such as a variation on Pictionary or a quiz.
A disadvantage to Houseparty is that the app does not have a version for Windows computers, but that was also knocked off the throne by Android years ago as the operating system with the most users. Across all other platforms Houseparty works like, as it is often called, the ‘living room of the internet’: you just walk in and chat with whoever is already working. That was the philosophy that in 2016 that brought Rubin a whopping 67 million euros in venture capital (meanwhile, the company is owned by Epic Games, the company behind the game Fortnite). One app, Rubin said in an interview on the blog of investment group Sequoia Capital, is “a living organism that must live in harmony with its users.”
These apps will help you get through the ‘lockdown light’
Outside of Houseparty, of course, there are plenty of free apps available for Android and iOS that help you break through your social isolation or maintain your – physical or mental – health. Here are four of them.
Zoom: An alternative group chat app is Zoom, which was already making a breakthrough with professional users before the Covid-19 crisis. But the free version has a few possibilities that Houseparty, for example, doesn’t have. This allows you to set up group conversations of up to 100 users. And it works, unlike Houseparty, also on Windows.
FamilyAlbum: Families who are disconnected from grandparents or other family and family members can use this app to create a shared photo album, on which anyone can add new images. Or videos.
Sworkit: You may go outside for a walk, but for a little more intense exercise indoors, we recommend this easy-to-use DIY fitness app.
WordFeud: A game always goes in, even remotely. There are also virtual Monopoly games and Fortnite is of course always an option for the young people in the house, but this variation on Scrabble rightly remains an evergreen.

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These are the most beautiful towns and villages on the Costa de la Luz

Forget the Costa Brava and the Costa del Sol. The far south of Spain is home to a pearl where these famous costas pale. Here no coastlines full of apartment complexes and hordes of tourists rushing in search of sun. On the Costa de la Luz Spain hides its most beautiful beaches, characteristic white villages, cultural cities and tastiest food. Here you will find everything that makes Spain so special. Therefore: the most beautiful towns and villages on the Costa de la Luz.

Costa de la Luz
The Costa de la Luz is the name for the far south coast of Spain, which stretches from Tarifa in the east to the border with Portugal in the west. From the Netherlands, this part of Spain is easily accessible. The nearest airport is jerez de la Frontera, but it’s easy to fly on Seville or Málaga. The beaches of Costa de la Luz are beautiful. They are wide, elongated and feature beautiful bright white sand with large beautifully shaped shells. After a lovely walk, pop down at one of the cosy seaside restaurants and the ultimate holiday feeling will meet you!

Vejer de la Frontera
Andalusia is of course known for its beautiful ‘Pueblos Blancos’: characteristic white villages in which you can get lost endlessly in a labyrinth of white alleys. Vejer de la Frontera is one of the highlights on the Costa de la Luz. The mountain village is considered by many people as the most beautiful white village in Spain. In addition to the typical white cube houses, there are also a number of other attractions here. For example, there is a Moorish castle, the Mayorazgo watchtower and La Cobijada, a black statue of a veiled woman. If you like to shoot the perfect picture of a heart-conquering white village, set sail for this enchanting town.

Zahara de la Sierra
Zahara de la Sierra is just a 45-minute drive from the spectacular city of Ronda. The road to this beautiful white village alone is worth it. Think of forests, hills, olive groves and fantastic views. Zahara lies against a hill taped under the ruin of a Moorish castle. The centre of Zahara de la Sierra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the heart of the white village you will find the Plaza Mayor with numerous cosy bars, restaurants and terraces. Torre del Homenaje, Iglesia de Santa María de la Meza and the Arco de la Villa are some sights in Zahara. The bright blue embalse de Zahara-el Gastor reservoir, just outside the city, is also worth a visit.

 

Most beautiful towns and villages on the Costa de la Luz: Istán
Another beautiful authentic white village in Andalusia. Istán is just behind touristMarbella, but has a completely different atmosphere. Everywhere you see fountains in the town with colorful azulejos, ceramic tiles on which different types of figures are painted. There is an atmospheric village square with the church of San Miguel. Istán is the gateway to the Parque Natural Sierra de las Nieves, where you can take beautiful walks. The views along the way are phenomenal. So you go on holiday to the Costa de la Luz, bring your walking shoes!

Jeréz de la Frontera
Add together all the typical ingredients of Andalusia and you have Jeréz de la Frontera. Flamenco, horse dressage and sherry are the code words here. With a walk through the center, admire the impressive old buildings, baroque churches, lively plazas and parks. Also visit the atmospheric santiago and San Miguel neighborhoods and stroll through the gardens of Alcazar de Jérez. And of course you end the day in a bodega, after all you are in the capital of sherry.
Hotels Costa de la Luz
Do you want to discover all the beauty andalusia has to offer? Book a holiday to Costa de la Luz. We tip these accommodations to stay overnight:
Hotel Riu Nautilus
Apartment Bajondillo
Hotel SENTIDO Ama Islantilla
Clubhotel RIU Costa del Sol
Hotel Best Sabinal
Mac Hotel Puerto Marina
Hotel MS Amaragua
Apartment Stella Maris
Hotel Melia Costa Del Sol
You can sleep at Riu Nautilus. The hotel in Torremolinos gets a big 10 from : ‘Nice and very clean hotel. Really recommended.’

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Google honors man who discovered interest washing hands

Google will reflect on the man who discovered the importance of washing your hands in an image above the search field on Friday: the doctor Ignaz Semmelweis (1818-1865).Google will reflect on the man who discovered the importance of washing your hands in an image above the search field on Friday: the doctor Ignaz Semmelweis (1818-1865).

Google will reflect on the man who discovered the importance of washing your hands in an image above the search field on Friday: the doctor Ignaz Semmelweis (1818-1865).

Google will put a doodle on Semmelweis above the search field in all countries on Friday.

.Semmelweis became head of a maternity hospital in Vienna on March 20, 1847. At the time, one in five women died in childbirth. Semmelweis discovered that this was due to infections. Doctors and nurses took sickers with them from deceased mothers, infecting the following patients. This could be prevented by hygiene.
Semmelweis instructed all doctors and nurses to wash their hands for each treatment. Within a few months, mortality had dropped to a few percent, and in the year after his appointment there were a few months in which all pregnant women left the hospital alive.
Contemporaries were initially sceptical about Semmelweis’ approach, but eventually the whole world changed tack.

 

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Go on a car holiday: the best weekends by car

Sometimes you just want to take a break, really away, but not too far from home. The car is so (packed) so a weekend to a place nearby is planned. We think these are the best weekends away by car!

Lille, the ‘hidden city’ in France
From Amsterdam you drive to Lille in about 3.5 hours: perhaps still quite unknown, but one of the most beautiful cities in France. Lille may know you from Europe’s biggest flea market once a year. But the city is also famous for its sweet treats, such as Merveilleux: layers of whipped cream and meringue sprinkled with chocolate flakes, or for the pastry, the waffles, mussels and the special beer. In the old town of Vieux Lille you can stroll through old narrow streets full of special boutique shops. Spend the night at the 8.1-rated Novotel Lille Centre Grand Place, a four-star hotel in Lille.

Ghent, fairytale Belgium
The capital of East Flanders is just a little longer than a 2.5 hour drive from Amsterdam and is therefore a perfect city for the best weekends away by car. The centre is fairytale because of the beautiful facades of the buildings. Add to that cosy squares and narrow streets and you have a lovely city to stroll through. Don’t skip the Patershol, ghent’s oldest district. Lovers of vintage set their alarm early and go to the antique market next to the St. Jacobs Church on weekends. Holidaymaker Justine stayed in Ghent at the lovely Pillows Grand Hotel Reylof and says: ‘Beautiful luxury hotel with lovely beds and beautiful spa facilities.’

The Eifel, a special place in Germany
Drive from Amsterdam in about 3.5 hours to De Eifel: a mountain food just across the border in Germany, full of cute villages, ancient volcanoes and a beautiful nature. Especially visit the picture Monschau, which lies in a valley. It’s like walking into a fairy tale! Surrounded by many coloured trees are special cottages along the water. The area is also known for the many ancient volcanoes you can visit. Especially nature lovers will get their money’s worth in De Eifel.

Metz, to the Moselle in France
It’s almost five hours away, but then you’re in an unforgettable place: Metz that’s on the banks of the Moselle in France. That’s just why it’s beautiful! Ten years ago, metz opened the Centre Pompidou, a museum that is already special from the outside. What you can’t ignore in this place is the ancient St Étienne Cathedral with impressive stained glass windows inside. Of course, you’ll also take a walk along the Moselle, or rent a small boat and explore Metz from the water.

Texel, a beautiful Wadden Island
Away in your own country by car? Go to Texel, the first island of the Wadden Islands. By boat (by car) you are on the island in about twenty minutes from Den Helder and there you end up in another world. Wide vistas, cosy villages such as the Koog, Den Burg and De Cocksdorp near the lighthouse. Of course, on the island you can also enjoy the beach, the sea air and then have a drink at one of the many beach bars. Stay on Texel at hotel Kogerstaete which is rated on with a 9.6. Holidaymaker Nico said in a review: ‘Very much enjoyed at the hotel. Hotel is located just outside the centre of the Koog. Very nice rooms, just renovated. We were there as a family with the 2 children aged 8 and 9. They also enjoyed the beautiful and tasty breakfast. Very friendly and helpful owners and service!’

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Travel advice: only abroad if necessary

If, despite all the restrictions, you still have doubts about going abroad in the coming weeks, you can really delete those plans. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs advises all Dutch people to travel only if strictly necessary.

All countries in the world now have at least code orange. This is the result of the decision of EU countries to drastically limit the possibility of travel to the Schengen area. For this reason, the Foreign Office advises all Dutch people from now on not to travel abroad unless necessary. Holiday trips abroad are not recommended. This advice to make only necessary travel applies to the whole world, including Schengen countries. A trip by car to Germany and Belgium, for example, is therefore not recommended.
Travellers from outside the EU are also only allowed when their journey is of great importance. Are you still abroad and would you like to go back? The entry ban does not apply to EU citizens and their families, people with residence permits, medical personnel, lorry drivers, diplomats, certain researchers and border workers. For all Dutch travellers, the Ministry advises delaying or cancelling all trips where possible.
Options are being looked at to allow Dutch travellers to return home, therefore always keep in touch with your travel company or airline or sign up here with the Foreign Affairs Information Service.

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On holiday to Formentera? Tips for beginners

Do you dream of a holiday on a paradise island with white beaches? Then set course towards Formentera! No idea what’s going on on this Spanish island? Then you’ll probably have something to do with our Formentera tips for beginners.

Formentera in a nutshell
Formentera is the smallest inhabited island in the Balearic Islands with an area of 83km². The island has about 12,000 inhabitants and is less than ten kilometres south of Ibiza. Although more and more holidaymakers are able to find this paradise, tourism on Formentera is still small-scale. The biggest attraction are the powder-white beaches with crystal clear sea. There is a relaxed vibe on the island: words like ‘haste and stress’ are forbidden. In short, the perfect destination for a relaxing beach holiday.
The climate on Formentera
Formentera has a pleasant Mediterranean climate with mild winters and warm summers. The best travel time for a sun holiday is from May to October. The driest and warmest months are June to August, when the mercury rises to 30 degrees with ease. Do you think that’s too hot? Visit Formentera in May or October. Then the temperature is slightly lower and it is also a lot quieter than in the busy summer months.

How did you get to Formentera?
Formentera does not have an international airport and is only accessible by ferry from Ibiza. So fly first to Ibiza city and then board the boat towards Formentera in the harbour. There are ferries from different airlines, which sail in about half an hour. With the Aquabus you take about 15 minutes longer, but this saves a lot in the price. On Formentera itself, the best place is to move on a scooter.
Beaches on Formentera
A day of sunbathing at the beach? Plenty of choice, because on Formentera it bursts with pearly white beaches. Platja de Ses Illetes attracts the most sun worshippers. And of course that’s not for nothing: this wide sandy beach is where you feel like you’re on the Caribbean for a while. The sea there is unreal blue! In addition, we tip the beaches: Cala Saona, Playa Tanga, Es Calo des Mort and Platja de Tramuntana.

See and do on Formentera
Looking for more Formentera tips for beginners? Besides lounging on the beach, there is of course more to do. For example, wander the scenic streets of the capital Sant Francesc Xavier, hop on your steel steed to cycle past the most beautiful bays, or stroll through Ses Salines Nature Park. A unique nature reserve with special flora and fauna and beautiful salt lakes. Fancy shopping? This is possible in the nice boutiques in Sant Francesc or at the hippie market La Mola. This colourful market can be found every Sunday in the village of Pilar de la Mola. You score the most beautiful jewelry, clothing and accessories.
Food and drink on Formentera
A lover of fish? Then you’re in good shapeentera. In the fishing village of Es Caló you will find the best seafood restaurants on the island. The fish comes straight out of the sea, fresher can hardly. The local specialty on Formentera is peix sec, dried fish. There’s always something nice for you. Preferably prepared with lots of garlic. And of course you rinse away all that goodies with a delicious glass of sangria. Proost! For Spaniards, lunch is the most important meal of the day and they like to take the time extensively. In many restaurants you can order a three course daily menu for a nice price.

Beautiful accommodations on Formentera
Fortunately, on Formentera you won’t find concrete megahotels, but mainly small-scale accommodations. Want to know where best to holiday on Formentera? We have selected some nice accommodations for you:
Apartment Castavi
Paraiso de los Pinos
Apartment Timon II

 

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Best holiday by boat in the Netherlands

Just love everything? Go out on the water! Rent a boat, boat or sailboat and plan one of these best weekends away by boat. Or bring your own boat on a mini-holiday of course. In short, give yourself a wonderful sailing weekend. All hands on deck

 

Eleven-city tour sailing in Friesland
Bad luck for the ice skating enthusiasts: the 200-kilometre skating trip on natural ice hasn’t taken place in a while. Boat enthusiasts are luckier, you can take the route by boat (maximum draught of 1.30 meters and doear speed height of 2.40 meters). Cruise the beautiful route along the original eleven cities of the tour of tours: Leeuwarden, Sneek, IJlst, Sloten, Stavoren, Hindeloopen, Workum, Bolsward, Harlingen, Franeker and Dokkum. You have to take a week off for this, but of course you can also sail the route over a number of weekends. Just like many people do with walking the Pieterpad. Tip! Sneek, as the heart of the province of Friesland, is not allowed to skip.

Sailing in Groningen
Would you rather spend a weekend away to Groningen? Choose one of the lakes and you’ll look out your eyes. Do you choose Lake Zuidlaarder, Leekstermeer, Paterswoldsemeer, Hoornmeer or Schildmeer? The choice is huge! Via the Lauwersmeer, which is on the border of Groningen and Friesland, you will sail on to the Wadden Sea.

Bobbing on the Wadden Sea
Visit the Wadden Islands by boat. Bucket list material does, right?! Cruise through the unique nature reserve (UNESCO World Heritage Site) past the sunbathing seals on the sandbanks. Enjoy the colorful sunsets and marvel at the difference between low tide and high tide. Especially the boat route Vlieland – Texel is very popular. There are few difficult points on this route. Especially if the wind cooperates a bit, this is a very nice shipping route. The Wadden Sea is really not intended for novice mates. Tip! Various boat rental companies organize lottery trips where you can gain experience.

Sailing in the IJsselmeer area
Sail on the wide IJsselmeer over ample water to the nicest historical harbours in beautiful Zuiderzee towns. For example, the 17th-century Zuiderzee town of Enkhuizen and the open-air museum is highly recommended. The shipping routes around the Marken Peninsula are ideal for a weekend trip. Make a stop at Fort Island pampus, Durgerdam or one of the uninhabited islands off the Muider coast. Also, you can’t skip Zuiderzee towns Hindeloopen and Stavoren. Delicious stops to eat or stretch your legs with a walk down the embankment.

Sailing over the Westerschelde
Spend a weekend on the Zeeland water? Snort the salty sea air in port towns such as Vlissingen and Breskens. From here you can sail all the way to Antwerp. Nice idea for a weekend away! The water is getting quieter and calmer.
Harderwijk – Spakenburg
Make no mistake, Flevoland is beautiful to sail! Throw the bunches loose in Harderwijk, but not for having visited the Dolphinarium with the kids. Cruise past the marinas on the Wolderwijd, past horst and zeewolde beach. Via strand Nulde and holiday park de Eemhof you will sail through the NK 40 fairway to the old fishing town of Spakenburg.

Sailing in Overijssel
Overijssel is also a water sports province. The beautiful national parks de Wieden and Weerribben make it a fantastic destination for a weekend on the water. Enjoy nature, but also make a trip to Giethoorn, Zwolle or Kampen.

Holiday home with boat on your doorstep
Also nice: book a holiday home with boat or a cottage where you can moor. That’s how you get the best of both worlds. A fully catered guest address, and a small boat on the doorstep for one of the nicest weekends away by boat.
Holiday home De Waterpoort: jump into the boat from your holiday home. There is a small boat on your doorstep that you can rent for a voyage of discovery on the Frisian waters.
Holiday park Giethoorn: ideal for discovering the whole of Giethoorn from the water. Your chalet is on the water and you have your own boat on your doorstep.
Holiday home Wellness on the Water: this holiday home is located in the middle of the National Park de Âlde Feanen and has its own jetty for your boat.

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5 special things to do in Egypt

There are so many fun things to do in Egypt. Of course, you’ll visit cultural treasures such as the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo, the king’s tombs in Luxor, and the mystical temples of Abu Simbel in southern Egypt. But if you really want to do something special, you have to get away from the beaten path. With these activities you will discover truly unique places in Egypt.

Do in Egypt: climb the king gallery in the ‘Great Pyramid’
If you have planned a holiday in Egypt, you will of course go to the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo. But did you know you can go into the Pyramid of Cheops? The inside of the ‘Great Pyramid’ consists of a huge passageway with steep staircases and this is perhaps the pyramid with most mysteries of them all. The climb up takes you to the burial chamber where you stand directly under the treasury. Imagine what treasures are above your head!

Discover a prehistoric sea in the desert
Discover El Fayoum, or Cairo’s garden. The inhabitants in the oasis area live off the agriculture and fish they catch in Lake Qarun. This large saltwater lake extends over much of the oasis. In Wadi el Hitan you will find proof that in the dry desert there was a huge ocean hundreds of millions of years ago. More than 400 skeletons of prehistoric whales have been well preserved due to the drought and heat of the desert. Nowhere in the world do you find a place like El Fayoum and that makes it one of the most special things to do in Egypt.

Khan-el-Khalili market
Khan-el-Khalili is the largest, most colourful and perhaps the oldest souk in the world. With a jumble of stalls full of colourful herbs, Persian carpets, clothes, bongs, shops of tailors and tea cafés. Don’t have to get up early, go there at the end of the afternoon, then the souk comes alive and the shops open.

Traditional felucca tour Egypt
Of course, it’s part of taking a tour of Egypt: a felucca tour of the Nile. Sail out early in the morning on the traditional sailboat and enjoy a nice trip. Such a felucca tour is quite basic, but the experience makes up for the lack of amenities.

Diving in Safaga
In the category less touristy, but therefore no less spectacular we have another one for you. Safaga is a small port town in the south of Hurghada. Impressive coral reefs with an insanely beautiful underwater world of stingrays, sharks and large schools of brightly colored fish. From Safaga you can also take a day trip to Cairo, Luxor or Aswan, for example.
Hotels Egypt
Do you have plans for a holiday to Egypt? You may still be able to score a sharp offer at one of the accommodations below on Zoover:
The Breakers Dive & Watersports Resort
Sol Y Mar Sharks Bay
Jungle Aqua Park
Stella Di Mare Beach Resort & Spa
You can already see yourself lying by the pool of Hotel Jungle Aqua Park. Reviewer Agnes recently celebrated holidays at this amazing hotel in Hurghada: ‘Want a carefree holiday in a beautiful park? Then you should definitely come here! We had a fantastic week: very good service, friendly staff, beautiful resort, enough and varied food, everywhere you can sit and have a drink. Also for young children it is ideal, there is a beautiful playground and animation is super fun! We’ll definitely be back here!’

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The Pacific island of Niue is the first country to become a dark sky nation

On the island of Niue you can enjoy a beautiful clear starry sky as this is the first country without light pollution. Dark skies ensure that you have a clear, uncontaminated view of the stars. A completely dark sky is rare because 80% of the world’s land mass suffers from light pollution.
Niue is the world’s smallest independent nation with just over 1,600 inhabitants, and is located in the middle of the triangle formed by Samoa, Tonga and the Cook Islands. The island has now received formal accreditation from the International Dark-Sky Association for an International Dark Sky Sanctuary and International Dark Sky Community.
Niue has taken important steps to achieve this status, including full replacement of street lights throughout the island and adjustments to private lighting. The island now also has additional on existing measures, formal protection of the air, sea and land.
The people of Niue have a long history of star navigation, lunar cycles and star positions. The knowledge around the night sky, held by the elders in the community, has been passed down from generation to generation. The elderly hope that the passion of learning about the cultural history of the stars will be revived among the younger generations. “Being a dark sky nation will help protect Niue’s night sky for future generations and visitors to the country,” said Felicity Bollen, CEO of Niue Tourism.
Observation sites currently used for whale watching and giving access to the sea are already located on the island. In addition, the roads that intersect on the island are ideal viewing locations. “Visitors can enjoy astro tours led by trained members of the Niuean community,” says Felicity. “They will witness the miracle of a night sky illuminated by thousands of stars.”

 

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Foodies beware! These local specialties in Malta want to taste

On a sun holiday to Malta? Good idea! Besides enjoying the fine climate and the beautiful coast, a holiday in Malta is of course not complete without good food and drinks. Curious what delicacies the Maltese cuisine has on the menu? You should taste these local specialties in Malta.

Fish in a small port in Malta

Rabbit stew
Don’t miss out on your culinary exploration in Malta is the national dish: rabbit. Fenek on his Maltese. This delicacy has been eaten for centuries on the Maltese islands. The traditional rabbit stew Stuffat Tal-Fenek is favourite! Preferably prepared with a good amount of garlic, served with baked potatoes and a light salad. It is cooked for hours over a low heat, making the meat super tender and falling off the bone. l-ikla t-tajba, eat tasty!

pastizzi Malta

Puff pastry snack
Hungry for a snack? The most popular snack in Malta is a pastizz. This deliciously stuffed puff pastry cake is available at almost every corner of the street at a pastizzeria. There are both sweet and savoury variants of the pastizzi for sale. For example, filled with ricotta and spinach or would you rather opt for a filling of Maltese bacon with peas? It’s up to you!
Maltees bread with filling
Any more sense of snacking? Then taste the ftira. This typical Maltese snack is a kind of cross between a pizza and a bagel. A Maltese bread with a hole in the middle, richly filled with tomato, garlic, onion, tuna and olives. But there are many more fillings available: from chicken to goat cheese and potato slices. You can’t think of it that crazy.

Fish soup with garlic
On an island you eat fish, from swordfish to tuna and from octopus to sea bream: in Malta there is plenty of fish available. From the sea so fresh on your plate. Also taste the aljotta, a tasty fish soup with (yes) garlic! One of the best local specialties in Malta. Do you already see yourself sitting on a terrace in the cozy seaside town of St.Julians? With a fresh fish on your plate and sea views. Carefree holiday celebrations at Hotel Radisson Blu Resort Malta St. Julians. We also tip Dolmen Resort in Qawra, Hotel Seabank in Mellieha and the absolute topper: DB San Antonio Hotel & Spa. According to reviewer Hennie: ‘An excellent hotel where you are served at your beck and call.’

Sweet treats
Do you have a soft spot for sweets? Lucky you! In Malta they also love sweet snacks and desserts. For example, try the divine imqaret: a fried date cake. Or how about the kannoli? This is the Maltese version of the Sicilian cannoli. A rolled cookie filled with ricotta and dried fruit and nuts. Not to be despised!
Maltese cheese
Are you a cheese fanatic? Then you must not have tasted gbejduring your holiday in Malta. This special cheese from Gozo is made by hand and is pure in taste. The round cheese of sheep – or goat’s milk tastes excellent with a wine or in a salad. Also tasty: try the Maltese ravioli (ravjul), which is prepared with the cheese from Gozo, local tomatoes and a few cloves of fresh garlic.

Maltese wine
Of course, you rinse all that delicious food away with a delicious wine. Perhaps Malta is not really known as a wine island, yet delicious local wines are served. The native grape varieties gellewza and ghirghentina provide a distinct taste. Not only can you sample maltese wines in wine bars and restaurants, but many vineyards also organize tours and tastings. Saŋňa, cheers!

 

 

 

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Ibiza is the ideal holiday destination after a break-up!

A divorce a cause for a party? If it’s up to a hotel in Ibiza: they offer a special divorce package for fresh bachelors and their friends to party heavily on the Spanish island

Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel, the iconic party hotel where DJs like David Guetta and Calvin Harris regularly throw pool parties, offers singles-only packages. The package includes a ‘Party All Night Long’ room for the one who is separated and Superior Club rooms for friends. In addition to staying in one of the luxurious rooms, you’ll also be treated to an ‘Unexpected Breakfast’, a jacuzzi in the pool, a ‘Be Single’ buffet and a drink on the roof terrace. From May, the divorce package can be booked on Zoover. The hotel came up with the idea for this special package after it was revealed that more than 57 percent of Spanish marriages end in divorce. Celebrating your break-up would even be the next big travel trend after bachelor parties abroad.
Ibiza for partygoers
Ibiza is part of the Balearic Islands. Because there is always reason for a party, even if you are not divorcing, the island is also known as party island. The 2020 party season in Ibiza starts at the end of May and continues until the first week of October when most big clubs close again. Whether you want to go out for a night or really go for a party week, you don’t have to look long for the place to be. Famous party places: San Antonio and Ibiza city.

Ibiza for nature lovers
No partygoer? Even then there is plenty to do in Ibiza. Because did you know you have beautiful top and underground nature here? Rent a car and set off and drive past the infinite number of pine trees, the tree of Ibiza. Don’t skip the Cala d’Hort Natural Reserve. It is one of the most special places in Ibiza and the sunset at Es Vedrà, from the beach of Cala d’Hort, is breathtaking and relaxing. Relaxing are also the many yoga opportunities in Ibiza. From retreats to one-off yoga classes. There is plenty of choice, even in beautiful places such as at Beach club Amante where you can take a yoga class every Monday and Friday morning with sea views.

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The best trips from Sharm el Sheikh

Holiday celebrating in Sharm el Sheikh? Get off your lazy beach bed for a fun excursion or day trip. There is plenty to see and do near the Egyptian resort. We have listed the best trips from Sharm el Sheikh for you.

On quad and camel safari in the desert
On an adventure in the desert? Explore the sand plains of Sinai on a quad bike. Packed with a scarf and sunglasses to protect you from the grains of sand, you’ll bump through the special desert landscape. Along the way, pause at a Bedouin camp to get acquainted with the inhabitants and their culture while enjoying a cup of mint tea. Most tours include a ride on the back of a camel. With any luck, you end the day with an enchanting sunset. One of the best trips from Sharm el Sheikh!

A snorkeling excursion to the Blue Hole and Dahab
Sharm el Sheikh is a diving destination par excellence. Have you seen the magical underwater world in and around the seaside resort? Then it’s worth taking a trip to The Blue Hole. A spectacular snorkeling spot with crystal clear water and colorful fish and coral reefs. The Blue Hole is about an hour and a half’s drive from Sharm el Sheikh, about ten kilometres north of Dahab. So you can combine your snorkeling trip with a visit to this laidback resort.

Visit National Park Ras Mohammed
Also, a trip to Ras Mohammed National Park should not be missed while on holiday in Sharm el Sheikh. You will probably also go snorkeling here, because this protected nature reserve is largely located in the Red Sea. The crystal clear waters live more than a thousand species of fish and other marine animals, such as sea turtles and dolphins. In the national park, which is 20 kilometres south of Sharm el Sheikh, you can also make the crossing to the islands of Tiran and Sanafir.

Climbing Sacred Sinai Mountain
Experience a mystical experience in nature? Then climb the Sinai Mountain known from the Bible, or the Moses Mountain. On this nearly 2,300-metre mountain, the prophet Moses received the ten commandments of God. You reach the top by overcoming 750 steps. A tough climb, but once up you will be rewarded with spectacular views. Especially the sunrise there is magical. After this moment of enjoyment, you’ll see the famous Katharina Monastery, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can’t climb the mountain on your own, so there’s always a Bedouin guide with you.

Stroll through the Colored Canyon
You can’t miss this impressive natural phenomenon! The Coloured Canyon is a mountainous desert area with spectacular rock formations and gorges in all colors and shapes you can imagine. Formed by thousands of years of erosion. The Coloured Canyon is about a two-hour drive north of Sharm el Sheikh.

A day trip to world wonder Petra in Jordan
Is a visit to world wonder Petra high on your bucket list? Take that chance while on vacation in Sharm el Sheikh. The hidden red-pink town in Jordan is located 350 kilometres north of Sharm el Sheikh. A big ride, but well worth it. The mysterious city lies in a gorge and is partially carved into the rocks. What an enchanting picture! Do you like a holiday in Sharm el Sheikh and are you still looking for a nice hotel? Sleep well at Hotel Jaz Mirabel Beach or Sunrise Montemare Resort Grand Select. This adults-only hotel is rated on Zoover with a whopping 9.8. Reviewer Fleur agrees with this good review: ‘Wonderful location, staff is amazing. Definitely a place to unwind. Yoga sessions recommended.’ Prefer to holiday near Hurghada? Then we tip Hotel Club Azur in Makadi Bay.

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How to make your own disinfectant hand gel

Since the coronavirus reached the Netherlands, people have been stocking masses of hand gels and soap. Good hygiene is the weapon against the flu. Fished behind the net? No worries! That’s how you make your own hand gel.
Supplies
First things first, the requirements! For your own disinfectant hand gel, you need the following ingredients:
– 2 parts 96% alcohol (isopropyl alcohol) or vodka
– 1 part (aloe vera) hand gel
– 8 to 10 drops of essential oil, such as lavender, lemon, cinnamon or peppermint
– Mixing bowl
– Spatula
– Funnel
– Possibly a few drops of teatree oil
– Tray/squeeze tube
Diy
It is important to stick to the ratio of alcohol to gel to get enough disinfection. In a bowl, mix the neutral hand gel and the denatured alcohol 96%. Stir the mixture well with a spatula until it gets an even mass. You could add some drops of teatree oil. This oil is antifungal. Add this, mix in fragrance oil to neutralize the strong smell of teatree.
Pour the mixture into a tray or squeeze tube et voilá, your homemade hand gel is ready to apply.

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