All posts by Johann Thorsson

Are These the 5 Most Amazing Beach Resorts in the World?

Are These the 5 Most Amazing Beach Resorts in the World?

Do you ever dream about spending a stress-free weekend in an amazing beachfront villa hotel?

Us too (nonstop every day all day).

We were looking over the categories at this year’s World Travel Awards and there was a category that caught our eye: The World’s Leading Hotel Beach Villas (so many words to love in a single category name).

These are hotels that just happen to be by the beach in exotic locations, where the emphasis is on making the guest as relaxed as possible.

Just take a look at these nominees, the Top 5 Beach Resorts in the World.

1. Beach Villa @ Sofitel Dubai the Palm Resort & Spa

 

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All the accommodations at Sofitel overlook the sea, the palm or the resort. Each one offers a flat-screen TV, a minibar, coffee and tea amenities, a wardrobe and a Bose station. The suites and the apartments include a living room complete with a dining area and en-suite bathrooms that offer Lanvin or Hermes amenities.”

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Amenities include: 

Restaurants offering various cuisines, from French to Asian and Italian delicacies. Porter House offers succulent steaks and grills while Maui Beach serves cocktails by the beachside.

The Spa at the Sofitel offers 28 treatments rooms, seawater pool, sauna and French beauty treatments including massages and deep relaxation rooms. There is also a high-tech gym equipped with the state-of-the-art cardio machines.

For adventurous activities, guests have access to a boat jetty and 2 tennis courts.

Take a closer look

2. Beachfront Villas @ One&Only The Palm, Dubai

 

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The One&Only features spacious rooms, suites and villas that are either situated within the hotel’s Manor House or in private Beach Villas. The rooms and suites overlook the main pool and the palm-shaded terraces. The Beach Villas offer direct beach access and personalized service.

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Amenities include:

A choice of 3 restaurants, which includes the over-water Marina Restaurant, Bar & Lounge. Guests can also venture out by water taxi to the One&Only Royal Mirage to have dinner at any of its 7 restaurants.

Activities include golfing, water sports and excursions.

The resort’s One&Only Spa is set amidst outdoor gardens and features its own pool and 8 private treatment suites.

Take a closer look

3. Beachfront Villas @ Six Senses Zighy Bay, Oman
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“Set between the mountains and a 1.6-kilometre private beach on Zighy Bay, this village-style resort offers luxury villas with private pools and a comprehensive spa and wellness center including Moroccan hammams.”

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Amenities include:

A restaurant serving modern gourmet cuisine, Sense on the Edge, is located 293 m above the sea level, presenting panoramic views over the Gulf of Oman.

Six Senses Zighy Bay features extra large villas in traditional Omani style, with flat-screen TVs, home theatre systems and poolside dining areas.

Some villas have a wine cellar, and private massage rooms.

Private. Massage. Rooms.

Take a closer look

4. Sugar Beach Luxury Villas @ Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, St. Lucia

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“Located in beautiful grounds overlooking Pitons Bay, Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort offers luxurious accommodation with views of the surrounding valley. Set on Sugar Beach, it features a spa, outdoor pool and 3 restaurants.”

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Amenities include:

Villas with private plunge pools or swimming pools. All accommodation have a flat-screen TV, an iPod docking station, a coffee maker and a fridge. All rooms come with complimentary Piton beer, soda and water.

The on-site spa is set amongst the plantation’s lush gardens and next to a stream. It features a hot tub and a Temazcal outdoor sauna.

Treatments include wraps, massage and facials.

Take a closer look

 

5. Villas @ Six Senses Con Dao, Vietnam
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“Set on the untouched island paradise of Con Dao, about 230 km from Ho Chi Minh City, Six Senses features luxurious villas with private infinity pools and unobstructed views of the sea. It boasts a private beachfront, day spa and fitness facilities.”

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Amenities include:

Guests of the resort can enjoy butler service from their rooms at their convenience. Free WiFi, of course.

Lazy afternoons can be spent in the library lounge or diving in the sparkling ocean or pool waters.

Guests have the choice of eating in the Six Senses restaurant, private beach area or in the comfort of their own villas.

Take a closer look

And of course, all these hotels are bookable on Dohop’s hotel search 😉

Norwegians of Dohop – These Are Your 10 Favorite Cities

Norwegians of Dohop – These Are Your 10 Favorite Cities

You really like to travel, don’t you?

So far this year, Norwegians have made over 200.000 searches for flights on Dohop.no This is an amazing amount of searches for flights.

But where have you been going this year? We took a look into our database and counted up the searches to find out what cities are your favorites. And here they are:

Clearly, Paris has been your favorite city this year.

Paris

A lot of you also want to go to southern Spain, as searches for flights to Alicante and Malaga are high and Barcelona is your fourth most popular city.

Altogether, looking at the top ten list, Spain is Norway’s favorite holiday destination. (With Tenerife at number 12).

Where did you go this year?

3 Tricks to Make Sure You Never Pay Too Much For a Hotel Again

3 Tricks to Make Sure You Never Pay Too Much For a Hotel Again

Have you ever paid too much for a hotel?

Perhaps you booked a hotel that looked great but when you arrived the pool was dirty, the food was no good and the room itself much, much smaller than you thought.

On Dohop’s hotel page you can find over a million hotels and properties worldwide. The thing is, it can be hard to know when you are getting a good deal on a hotel, right?

Here are three “tricks” to ensure that you are getting the most for your money on Dohop.

1. Watch for Value Deals

example of value deal hotel on Dohop

When a hotel combines a few things; good photos, great ratings from guests and is available for a rate lower than other comparable hotels, they are marked with a “Value Deal” icon. Sometimes, they are also having a discount sale, as in the example above.

These deals are generally only on hotels that are already well worth a stay, and we just feel a reason to call them out especially.

You should not be disappointed with a booking at a Value Deal hotel, both in regards to the hotel and the price of the booking.

2. Jump on Quick Discounts

Example of a discount hotel in Boston

When hotels in the city you are traveling to have discounts, they are clearly marked in the top left corner of the hotel result.

These are generally around 20% – 35% but occasionally they go up to 60% and above (as shown). These are temporary discounts as the hotel will only have a few rooms at the discounted price, so it makes sense to book this if you are searching with purpose.

Also, you can always cancel without paying anything if you do so with more than 7 days’ advance.

3 Look for Countdown Deals of the Day

Example of Dohop countdown hotel deal

Sometimes, a deal on a hotel is so exceptional we will highlight it at the top of your results. These are only available for a few hours, though, so you should make your mind up quickly.

So if you see one of these Deals of the Day, book that hotel, book it now.

Good to remember:

  • Most of the time you can cancel a hotel booking made on Dohop without paying anything, if you do so more than 7 days in advance of your intended arrival.
  • Make sure to read the guest reviews for the hotel you like. They can tell you a lot about the hotel.
  • Check out the photos. Each hotel in the Dohop hotel search has photographs of the rooms, the restaurants and nearby sights.
5 Reasons to Visit Warsaw This Year

5 Reasons to Visit Warsaw This Year

Warsaw is a really awesome city to spend time in, but can be hard to navigate for first-time visitors.

The city is big, spread out and lacks a really ‘cool’ center.

So we got tips from some Warsaw locals and created a handy must-see guide for you.

We want to make sure you don’t end up in a club bouncing with corpo-types and crap DJs playing Eurotrash music and there are so many more things to see than just the Disneyland-like Old Town.

Just in time for New Neighborhoods in Warsaw on September 10th, we present:

5 Reasons to Visit Warsaw This Year

 

1. Bibenda

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Bibenda is definitely a go-to restaurant in Warsaw

Wether you are looking for a Sunday afternoon lazy brunch or Friday night dinner with endless wine and every occasion in between, Bibenda is the place to go.

The menu is based on locally grown ingredients and old Polish recipes but with a Texan twist, thanks to the founding chef’s childhood in Austin.

You will love the awesome service, the house dog named Buba who happens to be on the house red and white wine labels (very drinkable, highly recommended) and the menu made to share.

 

2. Bars on the Vistula River

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Warsaw was recently ranked among the top cities for vivacious river life in Europe and that’s starting to really ring true.

While the river has, up until about 4 years ago, been a bit of a dead zone dividing the two banks of the capital, the city has put quite a bit of money into revitalizing it.

Now, you will find bars, concert venues and barges to eat tasty treats and dance until sunrise between the Old Town down to Łazienkowski Bridge. Just get off the metro at the Copernicu Center and start wandering.

Particularly worth a stop is Munchies for pulled pork deliciousness, Barka for techno, Hocki Klocki (in the image above) for hip hop and rock concerts and Cud Nad Wisłą for a wide variety of gigs, from DJ sets by Mike Skinner to crooning Polish singer-songwriter Kortez.

3. Museum of the History of Polish Jews 

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The Museum of the History of Polish Jews took years to build for many obvious political reasons.

But, it now stands in the heart of the former Warsaw ghetto and provides both an intense wealth of information about the very long history of Jews in Poland and it is also a rather inspiring space architecturally.

Designed by Finnish architect Rainer Mahlamäki, it is meant to recall Moses’ parting of the Red Sea.

Plan to spend a few hours here as there is a lot to take in.

Wrap up with a walk through the neighborhood to get a full impression of a moving, tragic part of Warsaw’s history – the liquidation of the Jewish ghetto in 1943.

4. Plac Defilad

Plac Defilad

Plac Defilad is an initiative sponsored by the city of Warsaw to animate the square in front of the iconic Palace of Culture, connect the clubs and theaters and other cultural institutions there and revive some public space in the very center of the city.

The project is administered by barStudio, so keep an eye on their Facebook for regular events, but you can pretty much be sure that around 13:00 each Sunday in the summer, you can eat delicious brunch and listen to live classical music.

We can highly recommend New Neighborhoods Festival at barStudio on September 10th.

New Neighborhoods Plac Defilad

It’s an absolute pleasure for your hungover belly and ears.

There is also a few cool festivals run on the square, outdoor cinema, theater, concerts and much much more.

 

5. Plac Zbawiciela

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This square – actually a roundabout just south of the city center – is home to a giant white church (Jesus the Savior Church) and is the absolute see-and-be-seen place in all of Warsaw.

You can literally plop yourself down for breakfast at Charlotte (the Croque Madame is ace), meander over to Karma for a coffee meeting (they roast their own), grab Thai street food at Tuk Tuk and then drink ’til the wee hours any night of the week at Plan B (THE cult dive bar in town) – all in one place.

You will run into friends, make new ones, get work done, while lazy hours away… it is definitely a go-to spot for Warsaw’s young crowds.


Check Flights to Warsaw Hotels in Warsaw

Flights From Iceland Have Never Been Cheaper

Flights From Iceland Have Never Been Cheaper

According to our latest price-comparison for flights from Keflavik airport, it has never been cheaper to fly out of the country.

The average price for a return flight from Iceland is now 44.045 krónur and has never been lower.

In addition to this, we expect flight prices to dip even further as we head into the fall.

Iceland is experiencing a travel boom, and more airlines now have scheduled flights to Iceland than ever before. This, together with lower oil prices, explains the unprecedented low flight prices.

Below you can see flight prices from Iceland to 10 popular cities.

Check out prices on Dohop Go!
5 Things to See, Do and Taste in Wroclaw

5 Things to See, Do and Taste in Wroclaw

Is Wrocław one of the most gorgeous cities in Poland?

It probably is. In fact, it may even be one of the prettiest cities in the entire world (along with Bergen, of course).

Just take a look at this:

Wroclaw

This year, Wroclaw is the European Capital of Culture for 2016. Wroclaw is considered the Venice of Poland (laced with canals and gorgeous architecture) and has plenty of things to do any time.

Here are five things our friends at Chimes, who are organizing the New Neigborhoods festival, suggest you do in Wroclaw.

1. Song of the Goat Theater

A world-class theater with an international cast and highly ambitious artsy productions (that also travel the world over) all in Wrocław? Yes.

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The wonderfully named Song of the Goat Theater, established 20 years ago, really pushes the boundaries of modern theater. Director Grzegorz Braal really loves to push his actors hard and far to provide high quality interpretations of classical theater (but not only).

They offer intensive master classes in a variety of dance and acting techniques and regularly ‘take the show on the road’, performing in London, China, Brazil and many more countries.

2. Bernard

This is definitely our recommendation on where to eat in Wrocław.

Bernard

Tasty food made from local ingredients, fantastic service – what more could you ask for? They even brew their own beer – it’s a good lager – and make interesting cocktails based on it (worth a try).

Plus, it’s located right on Wrocław’s main square. Be sure to make a reservation, as the place is full from morning until evening.

3. National Forum of Music

Poland’s concert halls have seen a boom in the past two years and most of the larger cities have put a major effort into revitalizing their philharmonic halls.

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Wrocław’s opened recently to great fanfare. It is an architectural and acoustic dream – it both looks intriguing and sounds fantastic inside.

What is particularly cool, however, is the fact that the NFM hosts not only classical symphony orchestras, but also soundscape events, a new electronica festival and much more.

4. The T-Mobile New Horizons Film Festival

This is probably one of the best film festivals in this part of Europe, featuring a great lineup of films from around the world, accompanied by masterclasses by film greats like Agnieszka Holland or Ulrike Ottinger, loads of panels and even a few great concerts sprinkled in.

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It is definitely one of the highlights of the calendar year in Wrocław and always worth a trip.

Make sure to mark your calendars for next summer already in anticipation of what’s sure to be a fantastic event. You can mentally prepare to never leave the cinema from morning until evening (though that might pose a health risk 🙂 ).

 

5. Szajba

Tucked into a courtyard just near Wrocław’s city center, you will find Szajba, a great bar to grab a bite, get drunk, dance and hang out.

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It’s small, eclectic and packed with young people looking to have fun.

The best part about Poland’s bar scene is that there is no curfew, so, if you need to dance the whole night through, you can! And this is a great place to do so. They also run concerts of great Polish bands once a month and maybe you’ll be lucky to catch one.

Oh, and it’s pronounced “Wrotsvaff”. True story.

 

 

4 Tips to Make Left-handed Travel the Best

4 Tips to Make Left-handed Travel the Best

Left-handed people don’t have an easy lot in life, living in a world where almost everything is “vice versa”.

This can get especially frustrating while traveling. Well, we have a small something for the left-handers of the world, seeing as Saturday is International Left-Hander’s Day.

Personally, we think every Saturday should be Left-Hander’s day, seeing as about one in seven people are left-handed. But what do we know.

Introducing Dohop‘s four tips for left-handers to make travel more enjoyable.

1. Own the Armrest.

When a left-handed person boards a plane, there is always that sigh of frustration; they know that the armrest-hassle is about to begin with whatever right-handed person they will be sitting next to.

However, there is a solution to this as there are two stand-outs for the left-handed traveller.

Make sure to select the aisle seat in the left row (from the front) or the window seat in the right row. This is actually, for once, worth the extra euro or two the airlines charge for selected seating.

lefty airplane seatmap

 

2. Keep it Right (Sometimes).

When traveling, the left-hander can accidentally make some cultural no-nos. Let’s avoid that.

Always offer your right hand when greeting someone (you probably do this anyway). If you try to shake hands by extending your left hand in some Asian countries in might be considered impolite.

In Africa, Asia and in some Muslim countries it is frowned upon to eat with the left hand, as this can be seen as unclean.

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Or just be a rebel: eat and drink with your left, local custom be damned!

Important business tip: In Asian countries, the business card should not be handed over or received with the left hand.

 

3. Bring Your Own Utensils.

Accommodation is not made for leftys, to put it mildly.

Most right-handed people don’t realize it, but appliances and utensils work differently for left-handers.

Parachute cords are almost always on the right side, for instance (this just means that skydiving is even more extreme for left-handed people).

There are a few common items we suggest left-handers pack and bring with them when they travel, just in case.

It starts with the corkscrew, but also a pair of scissors, a pocket knife and a can opener (what’s the deal with right-handed can openers anyway?).

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Medieval torture-device for lefties. Scissors to most people.

Just remember not to put them in your check-in bags, as we doubt that security will accept “but I’m left-handed” as an explanation for having a knife in your hand luggage.

4. Use Your Superpowers.

Sometimes, being left-handed can actually seem like a superpower.

You see, most countries have right-hand traffic so the cars are designed for right-handed drivers. This means that all operating elements, including gear change, are on the right side.

However, there they are a few wonderful countries with left-sided traffic where you sit on the right side of the car. So the controls – for once – are on the left.

Here, being left-handed is actually like a superpower.

I’ll handle this,” you can say and drive like the left-handed god you are.

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To make the most of this superpower, book trips to England, Australia, Thailand, South-Africa or Mauritius.

Share this with your left-handed friends. Then give them a left-handed high-five.

How prices on flights from Iceland will change in the next months

How prices on flights from Iceland will change in the next months

Do you want to know the cheapest time to travel in the coming months?

We constantly monitor flight price trends here at Dohop. In analyzing how prices evolved in 2015 and the pattern thus far in 2016, we can estimate that its likely we’ll see a drop in flight prices in the next months.

Even though the prices on flights from Iceland right now are 17% lower than in previous years (more competition perhaps?), we expect them to drop even further.

The green line in the graph below shows how prices were in 2015 and the red line shows monthly average prices so far in 2016

You can see, for instance, how much cheaper flights are now than they were at the same time last year.

The gray line represents our prediction for the rest of 2016.

There is less of an increase in flight prices this summer because we have not seen as much of an increase in flight prices to the U.S. as we saw last year.

The good news, of course, is that as low as prices are right now, we expect an even further drop as the year progresses into autumn, which is a great time to travel.

10 Things People Said About The New Dohop Logo

10 Things People Said About The New Dohop Logo

As you should all have seen by now, Dohop has a new logo and brand design.

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We’ve expected reactions to the change to be mixed; some people would hate it, others would love it.

Dohop employees themselves were not all fans of the logo at first (though now, of course, we all love it).

 

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Our new brand design was handled by award-winning design studio Bedow in Stockholm, Sweden. Last week, their work on our redesign got a review in one of the world’s main design journals, Brand New, which, among other things, specifically reviews logo redesigns.

While some of the comments were brutal (it is the internet, afterall), the redesign also got a lot of positive feedback.  Here are some highlights from the reviewers about Dohop’s logo redesign:

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1. “The new logo is very unconventional in that it’s almost like its own billboard with a layout and hierarchy within it but it’s quite fun in its quirkiness.”

2. “I like how the icons can switch to communicate different themes although it’s hard to tell at which point in the experience with Dohop you see them but, hey, they make for a cool GIF and talking point.”

3. “The best application might be their website — and I rarely praise websites. It manages to make the logo look more serious, the custom fonts look great, it’s all very neatly laid out, and the use of color is sharp and engaging.”

Now, one reviewer’s view doesn’t tell the whole story and, as we expected, there were other opinions.

The comments section of Brand New is quite lively and this case was no exception.

What the commenters said:

4. “I think I fell in love when I saw that sticker sheet. :D”

5. “I like that it’s quirky without feeling forced, it gives it a distinctly approachable vibe that the bigger sites don’t really have.”

6. “I give them credit for trying something different. In time, they could lose the icons from the lock up version and we will all understand the who and what the brand is.”

7. “The icons all convey a sense of the FUN side of travel. If this were Travelocity, it probably would have focused on the TSA, taxis, tickets, and the terrible trauma of travel. On the contrary, this is terrific!”

8. “I like the idea of breaking up the letters with icons. It’s not something you see often and it’s pretty out there compared to the original especially. The finished product definitely has some issues, but on the dark blue background on the website I actually like it a lot.”

9. “I think this is great, congrats to the team for producing a nice cohesive identity. Lot’s of fun, since it’s primary goal is to look up fares for travelling … on holiday. No suits required. Really like the mugs too.”

Now take a look at what Reddit said

Reddit-logo

Reddit is a dark corner of the internet that you should never visit. Ok, ok, Reddit can also be one of the most consistently entertaining and informative places online, and has managed to be so for about 10 years.

Redditors don’t hold back when it comes to sharing their (many times negative) opinions. But we still managed to get a bit of positive commentary:

10. “I think it’s a fun, stylistically consistent, flexible and responsive logo that will work well in lots of different applications.”

and alternative suggestions:

“Would have created a simple kangaroo logo with luggage to convey this website.” (Dohop…hop…kangaroo…we get it!)

Now tell us. What do YOU think of the new logo?

This Clever New Browser Feature Will Take the Stress Out of Your Next Flight Search

This Clever New Browser Feature Will Take the Stress Out of Your Next Flight Search

Finding and booking flights online can be stressful, right?

Even when using Dohop, you can still worry that you aren’t booking the right flight and if you are booking a Self-Connect flight there’s the added layer of stress with regards to making sure the flight times match.

No more.

Vivaldi is a browser that has a neat little feature that will remove some of that stress.

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The browser lets you do something that has really been missing from flight search.

When you use sites like Dohop to find flights, once you find something you want to book you click the result you like and are taken away to a booking site.

There, you are sometimes presented with more than one option and aren’t sure which flight it was exactly that you clicked.

Add to that the fact that if you are booking separate outbound and return flights or are lucky enough to have a Self-Connect option avaialble this becomes even more of an issue.

“What time was the return flight? Is this the right airline?”

 

The Secret Feature

Enter Vivaldi.

With Vivaldi you can stack tabs and then have them appear next to each other within the same window.

This way, you can keep your search results on one side as reference while you book the flight. No more jumping back and forth between browser tabs, no more worries about booking the wrong flight.

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Book your flight with the search result open for reference

Everything you need to now is right in front of you, right as you are booking. In the image above, for example, you can see that the price and times match. You are booking the correct flight.

You can even stack three or four tabs in the same screen.

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Open two or more browser tabs side-by-side.

Here’s how it’s done. Once you have a search result that opens in another tab, drag that tab over the Dohop tab. When it turns gray, let go and the tabs are stacked. Right-click the tabs and select “Tile stacked tabs” and it will open each tab separately in a split-screen view.

Clever, right?

Get Vivaldi for yourself and try it out the next time you are booking flights.

Download Vivaldi Today!