Check out our recommendations for what to do, where to go and what to eat in some of Cayman’s favorite overseas destinations this March.
Whistler Blackcomb, Canada
CULTURE There’s plenty more to Whistler than winter sports. The Audain Art Museum is worth a visit for the architecture alone: an angular, dark metal and glass structure that rises out of the woods. The best place to soothe weary limbs, meanwhile, is the Scandinave Spa, a sprawling wonderland of open-air hot baths, saunas and solariums.
COCKTAILS Longhorn and GLC offer the best après vibes, with the tunes pumping and drinks flowing from early afternoon each day. Try a ’spiked’ liqueur hot chocolate. The Ketel One Ice Room at the Listel Hotel presents another fun option, where you sample different flavored vodkas in a sub-zero setting.
DINING Fuel up for the day with an epic breakfast bowl at Wildwood or buckwheat crepes at Hot Buns. Some of the best dining experiences in town are seafood-based. The fresh maki rolls at Sushi Village are top-notch, while Rim Rock earns rave reviews for its oysters and wild salmon.
SHOPPING Located right in the Village Green is a large Lululemon, the perfect place to kit yourself out in stylish activewear. There are also Patagonia, Quicksilver and North Face stores to get you suited and booted for those winter sports.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH March is considered “Powder Month” by locals due to the abundance of snow that drops around this time. Want to make the most of it? Rise early with Fresh Tracks to enjoy a huge mountaintop breakfast and early bird access freshly groomed runs. Adrenalin-junkies can also give heli-skiing, tubing and Ziptrek’s high-wire adventures a whirl.
CULTURE For a tiny island nation, Taiwan has some super-size attractions. You can shoot up all 508 meters of Taipei 101, which is designed to resemble a giant bamboo stalk; hike the vast marble-walled gorge of Toroko National Park; or contemplate beautiful jades and bronzes in the National Palace Museum, home to the world’s largest collection of Chinese art.
DINING The vibrant Thongua night market offers an intoxicating array of Asian cuisine, from sushi to sweet rice-wine dumplings. Another local staple to try is guā bāo: slow-braised pork with pickled mustard and ground peanuts stuffed into a steamed bun. Lan Jia serves the best version.
COCKTAILS Who needs a menu when you have one of Fourplay’s top-notch mixologists? Simply tell them your favorite flavors and current mood, then watch them concoct a craft cocktail that perfectly hits the spot.
SHOPPING Admire Taipei’s street style in bustling, neon-lit Ximending, which is packed with high street brand names and cute accessories vendors. On weekends, the district’s iconic Red House building holds a ‘creative bazaar’ of products by emerging young designers.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Pingxi, a small hillside town just outside the capital, is all aglow for the Taiwan Lantern Festival (March 3-11). Villagers release scores of decorated paper lanterns containing secret wishes into the night sky. Over in Yanshuei District, meanwhile, an historic firecracker ceremony never fails to wow the crowds.
Wellington, New Zealand
CULTURE Ride the cable car up to the hilly, 25-hectare botanic gardens complete with gorgeous rose gardens, city views and stretch of native forest. The interactive exhibits of Wellington Museum, meanwhile, bring to life everything from Māori legends to maritime dramas.
COCKTAILS Locals are rightfully proud of their craft beers, so don’t miss chance to try some delicious brews at Garage Projects, Little Beer Quarter or Golding’s Free Dive. If you prefer a more tropical tipple, Motel Bar specializes in creative Tiki drinks.
DINING Kick off with a breakfast fit for a king at Loretta, with its scrumptious waffles, crumpets, croquet monsieur and well-stuffed toasties. Come evening, sample your way around the city’s rocking street food scene at Wellington Night Market or the roving Greek Truck. Or see what all the fuss is about the award-winning Bang Bang Burger at modern Vietnamese restaurant Apache.
SHOPPING Buy local threads at Starfish Clothing or Swonderful, two cute boutiques that spotlight ethical, New Zealand-made pieces. Karen Walker on Wakefield Street is something of a sartorial institution, known for her beautifully-tailored textiles plus cool jewelry and sunglasses.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Twitchers, listen up! March is the beginning of mating season for birds in NZ, so head to groundbreaking eco-sanctuary Zealandia (2km west of town) to observe some 30 native avian species roaming wild, including rare little spotted kiwis.
CULTURE One of the major temples of the Aztec Civilization was uncovered right here in the city, the Templo Mayor, with spine-chilling sacrificial stones dotted around its shrines. Then observe some grand colonial architecture at Palacio Nacional, in which Diego Rivera’s epic murals depict Mexican civilization from the arrival of Quetzalcóatl (the Aztec serpent god) to the post-revolutionary period.
COCKTAILS To experience a true mezcalería, draw up a stool at El Palenquito, study the encyclopedic menu (showing detailed production info) and sample your way through the cream of Oaxaca’s rural distilleries.
DINING Famed chef Enrique Olvera and his restaurant Pujol were the subject of a Chef’s Table episode, chronicling his inspired contemporary take on classic Mexican dishes. Ranked the 20th best restaurant in the world, Pujol’s tasting menu is constantly updated but one thing you can be sure of is signature dish “Mole Madre, Mole Nuevo,” a classic spiced sauce aged for more than 1,000 days.
SHOPPING Hipster neighborhood Roma is crammed with vintage boutiques, skating shops and young Mexican brands. Housed in a restored mansion, concept store Roma Quince has gathered a handful of cool homeware and fashion labels. Hunt for incredible Mexican artworks and antiques in the curio-filled penthouse Rodrigo Rivero Lake, and avant-garde books in Casa Bosques.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Thousands of white-clad figures gather at the ancient site of Teotihuacan for Spring Equinox. Watch as they scale the 360 steps of the Pyramid of the Sun, roughly 30 miles northeast of Mexico City, to perform mystical rituals.
CULTURE Join a walking tour around the cobbled squares and Georgian buildings of Trinity College, Ireland’s most prestigious university. The jewel in its crown is the Old Library, where you can feast your eyes on the breathtaking Book of Kells manuscript dating from AD 800.
COCKTAILS There’s a hardly a shortage of brilliant boozers in this town – in fact, some would say no one does pubs as well as the Irish. The daddy of them all is historic John Mulligan’s, where James Joyce, Judy Garland and John F. Kennedy (and other celebs whose names don’t begin with a ‘J’) have whet their whistles.
DINING Seafood favorite Catch 22 serves up unbeatable fish n chips in charming beach shack-style interiors. For something that reflects Dublin’s cosmopolitan vibe, feast on Middle Eastern fare at Brother Hubbard, or an outstanding farm-to-table Italian meal at Toscana. Leave room for a sweet treat at Rolling Donut, where the creative fillings include Pistachio Salted Caramel.
SHOPPING For some souvenirs with a difference, independent store Designist works directly with designers to develop and launch new gift products, from hand-poured candles to quirky books. Or you could simply bring back a bottle of single malt from the Celtic Whisky Shop’s extensive collection.
WHAT’S HOT THIS MONTH Don some green clothing and raise a glass of Guinness for St. Patrick’s Day. With landmarks lit up emerald for the occasion, the whole city is abuzz with concerts, talks and a funfair from March 15-19. The biggest highlight is a huge parade taking place on the Saturday.