Have fun with indoor gardening and boost your mental health?

As the winter season approaches, we tend to spend more time staying cosy indoors and wrapping up warm. But how do you beat the winter blues? Research has shown that gardening has the power to boost overall health, including reducing stress and lowering instances of depression. Read more

The Health Benefits of Taking a Hot Bath

Soaking in a hot or warm bath seems like a luxury after a long day. Hot baths have many health benefits apart from just relaxing us. Something as simple a hot bath can be good for your heart, blood pressure, skin health and many other things. Surprised? Take a look at what taking hot baths can really do for your health. Read more

UK findings reveal that 41% of women add nothing towards their pension pots

A UK report from True Potential Investor, a private pensions provider, reveals that a larger proportion of the female population (41%) save nothing each month towards their retirement dreams, compared with 30% of the male population. The graphic below, shares more findings. Read more

Top 5 Essential Antibacterial Herb Oils That You Must Know

Essential oils are something that you may just be learning about. However, these have existed for many hundreds of years. They are not only useful for keeping bugs away or cooling down your skin, but essential oils also play a very important antibacterial role in our bodies. The incredible thing about essential oils is that they can kill bacteria, without the bacteria becoming resistant to the oil over the years. That is why it is so important to know about these five essential antibacterial herb oils. Read more

A Guide to the Festivals of York

hotel in York, iknow-UK

York isn’t known as England’s City of Festivals for nothing, with many visitors based both locally and from all over the world descending upon this postal address just for its events and festivals. It would be foolish of me to say that upon your visit you will find something to your personal taste and liking to attend by way of the many festivals of York, which is true enough, but you’re better encouraged to drop in and catch a glimpse of some of those events you wouldn’t normally even bat an eyelid at. In other words, there’s perhaps a pleasant surprise waiting for you if you take the time to reward your curiosity!

The official list of the festivals of York will give you a solid base from which to select which ones you’re going to explore, but there are many more festivals on the go, some of which don’t take place annually, which makes them even more of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. However, the official list includes the Festival of Angels, the Viking Festival, Early Music, Late Music, Multicultural Food and Arts, Horse Racing (or the Ebor Race Meeting, as it’s more affectionately referred to), Mystery Plays, Food and Drink, Chinese New Year, and Christmas St. Nicholas’ Fair Festival.

I feel it pertinent to discuss some of my personal favourites and some of those which are more popular, but no amount of words can do any real justice to how the experience itself is. You simply have to be there to capture the essence of what a York festival is all about…

Viking Festival

Taking place in February, this is one of the most iconic if not the most iconic festival of York. Needless to say its appeal comes from its representation of the very rich history of the city, but perhaps what makes this the swansong festival of the city is the fact that attendees of all ages can have a lot of fun here. There’s a lot of dressing up and role-playing – I mean who doesn’t love a bit of mock fighting, but it’s a very educational festival as well which seeks to highlight the importance of the Viking Centre.

York Festival of Food and Drink

The latter part of September each year plays host to the York Festival of Food and Drink, which places a special focus on Yorkshire food, but is balanced out with a drinks programme that is focussed more on wine and incorporates selections from all over the world. Enjoy the many events which include tastings, demonstrations, dinners and markets which run over 10 days. Kids can enjoy some hands-on cooking fun as well…

Mystery Plays

While they don’t run each year, these Medieval Passion plays were given a new lease on life following the Second World War, but basically this is where the surprise element comes into play because the plays vary between venue-changing formal renditions and traditional plays which are acted out  on some floats which cover a lot of ground as they’re carried around the city.

If you’re visiting one of York’s many festivals this year (or next!) check out iknow-UK for great deals on a whole range of accommodation.

Why it’s never too late to educate yourself

No matter where you are in life, it is always a good idea to further your education. Obligations such as work and family shouldn’t deter you from the education that will allow you to advance your career. Learning new skills and earning a degree can open possibilities for anyone, whether it means a promotion at work or starting a new career. Finding the right university with flexible courses can make earning your education easier. The following are some of the top reasons why it is never too late to further your education and how to make it happen. Read more

Great art and craft ideas for home

The art of cutting, folding, glueing and matching patterns and colour is something that can be mastered by anyone. However, this would require a lot of time investment in a cheery, relaxed and peaceful mood. The end products can add an amazing allure to your home décor better than any shop bought items. Everyone is falling in love with this easy-to-do art and craft items. Check out the below ways to provide an eye pleasing hue to your home. Read more

Working Your Way Through Your Guitar Journey

Learning to play the guitar over an extended timeline is quite a journey. It requires a lot of different steps, and no two people go through it the same way. However, there are always ways to break it down into a number of different pieces, and it’s good to go into your particular pathway by understanding what those pieces are. Read more