Wednesday, May 27, 2009

England's Five Best Canal Holiday Routes

I'd like to share with our readers, an article I just came across in the Times Online about England's five best canal holiday routes. Terry Ramsey and friends have taken an annual trip on England's waterways for the past 16 years.
Here are his favourites

I personally would love to take a canal holiday tour, and then stay in a cottage or vacation home for the rest of my visit to England.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Top 5 Sun Holiday Destinations


Top 5 Sun Holiday Destinations

By Jane Wilkinson

1 .Sightseeing in Croatia


If it’s a holiday in the sun you’re after, a trip to Croatia will certainly suffice. Situated on the Adriatic Sea, Croatia’s rocky coastline is intriguing and beautiful, making it a prime spot to get some sun while enjoying exceptional scenery.
It’s not only the coast that makes Croatia a good sun holiday destination, with the rolling hills in the north and northeast, and the thick forests of the mountains in Lika and Gorski Kotar providing a good contrast to the beach summer holiday stereotype.
When you’re in the mood for a bit of sightseeing, Croatia boasts eight National Parks and seven World Heritage Sites, ensuring you’ll never be short of something to do.


2. Sun and Culture in Cyprus

Cyprus is a culturally rich sun holiday destination, where lazy days spent on the beach can be coupled with fascinating cultural excursions. Choirokoita is possibly the best preserved site of prehistoric settlement in the Eastern Mediterranean, where you can sneak a peak into an ancient civilisation. Wander through Roman villas where floor mosaics depict mythological scenes, and pay a visit to the underground tombs of kings.

A wide variety of beaches are, of course, readily at your disposal. Pick a beach to suit your mood, from secluded bays to stretching sandy coastlines or rocky coves.

3. The Miniature Continent of Gran Canaria

One of the seven Canary Islands, Gran Canaria is a ‘miniature continent’ in its own right, with a variety of landscapes and climates despite its small size. A holiday in the sun is virtually a permanent possibility on this island, with average temperatures being 20˚ even in winter.

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the capital city, is known for its vibrant nightlife, as well as miles and miles of beautiful beaches. For a quieter and more local experience, Ag├╝ines is a small traditional Canarian town, centred around its old church. Another worthwhile stop is Vecindario, a town predominantly inhabited by locals, with a weekly open air market selling local goods.

4. Volcanic Landscapes in Lanzarote

A truly unique sun holiday destination, Lanzarote’s volcanic landscapes contrast rocky mountains and beautiful beaches. With volcanic eruptions as recent as 1824, large parts of the island have landscapes which look like something from another world. El Golfo is a volcanic crater filled by sea water made green by algae, creating a green lagoon surrounded by black sand banks.
The Timanfaya National Park is a must for anyone travelling in the region, where 100 volcanoes rose up and dramatically altered the landscape. This mountainous region is known the Montanas del Fuego (Fire Mountains), and the temperature just below the surface is between 400˚ and 600˚. You will be sure to witness a demonstration of this heat by someone at the park, where a dry brush is thrown down a hole in the earth and instantly ignites.

In addition to the stark volcanic landscapes, golden, black and white sandy beaches line the coast, providing relaxing relief from exploring the inland wonders and creating a holiday in the sun with a difference.

5. A Taste of Turkey

Turkey marks the gateway between Europe and Asia, creating a blend of Eastern and Western cultures and traditions. Encircled by the sea on three sides, Turkey is a beautiful sun holiday destination. With the Aegean Sea in the West, the Black Sea in the North, the Mediterranean Sea in the South, and the Sea of Marmara situated inland, there is certainly no shortage of beach.

Exploring Turkey is an exciting endeavour, with the culture, music and food all displaying the blend of cultures making up this unique land. Enjoy delicious dining as you feast on simple dolmas, or enjoy the principle fish of Turkey, Hamsi, which is served in 41 different ways (including a dessert!). You can expect great-tasting food, interesting culture and beautiful scenery, making for a great holiday in the sun.

Article Source: Articles Engine

Don't forget that Hawaii is a year round fun in the sun destination.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Vacation Rentals vs Hotels for Holiday Accommodation

Read this well thought out article by David Elliot.
8 Essential Reasons to Choose a Vacation Rental Over a Hotel
There is no doubt that staying in a hotel whilst on vacation can be the height of luxury and relaxation, but it can also offer regimentation and tension. You have to watch the clock to make the times for food; listen out for housekeeping; hand in your keys to reception every time you leave the building. Is this really relaxation? Maybe it is time you thought about renting a holiday home next time you go on vacation. Holiday homes are no longer wooden chalets on a self sufficient site, they offer varied standards of accommodation depending on your budget. They can provide high standards of comfort at lower prices, along with the additional benefits of privacy, freedom and the ability to choose your own meal times and food.
Do you need more reasons why you should choose a holiday home rental over a hotel for you next vacation, well here are some.
1. When renting a holiday apartment you will find you have a lot more privacy and freedom than you will ever get in a hotel room. The time is yours to do with what you want, no fixed meal times and no having to worry when housekeeping are going to turn up at your door.
2. Over the years the spread of the multi-national hotels all over the world means that all hotels are beginning to look the same. Regulation style rooms, Cable TV, staff wearing the same uniform; when you move about the hotel it would not matter if you were on the French Riviera or on the Moon, everything would be standard. A holiday rental apartment can offer you the experience of living exactly like the locals. If you want that extra bit of luxury then you have the option to choose a rental with a swimming pool or BBQ patio just for you and your family, can a hotel offer you that.
3. If you enjoy taking your vacation with friends or your extended family then staying in a holiday rental is the most practical option, everyone can share the costs as vacation rental apartments charge a flat fee for the apartment, it is not calculated by the number of occupants. Therefore, you save money on what you would spend on hotel rooms. That means more money to spend on enjoying yourself.
4. Are you taking children with you on holiday who are too old to share a room with each other or with you? Well a holiday rental means that you do not have to worry them being in another room, and all the going between the rooms to find out what is happening. Your holiday rental would be like a second home, everybody in one exclusive area but being able to enjoy their own space.
5. Most holiday apartments offer fully equipped kitchens. This gives you the freedom of choice on whether to eat in the apartment or go and sample the local cuisine. This can save a lot of money when you have the whole family to feed. In a hotel you are likely to end up paying for food you do not eat, because there will be the days, after a day in the sun on the beach, or walking around all the local attractions, you will not feel like making yourself look respectable in order to share a meal time with a hundred strangers eating food you do not feel like eating.
6. The best thing about vacation rental apartments is that you will feel like it is yours exclusively for the duration. You decide when and what you eat, you decide who you meet, who you share the pool with, it is all yours. But this does bring with it the day-to-day chores you find at home, but what better way to mix in with the whole ambience of the region you are in, meet the locals, buy local food from local shops, drink in local bars. This must be more appealing than the sterile atmosphere of a hotel.
7. When selecting your holiday apartment the options are endless, do you want a cottage or a castle, are you on a budget or are you looking for that luxury villa you always dream about.
8. Can't you just picture yourself now, walking out of your apartment, stepping onto your patio to sit by your pool with a glass of your local wine you bought and poured yourself? Can any holiday hotel offer you that?
David Elliot writes for TravelEden, a website providing listings for bed and breakfasts, apartments, farmhouses and self catering holiday villas in Europe.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=David_Elliot

Find more vacation rentals by owner worldwide on Ideal Vacation Rentals

Friday, May 1, 2009

Travel Implications After Mexico Swine Flu Outbreak

The following is a letter I received this morning from Alan Fox, Chairman and SEO of Vacations to Go.

Dear Ms. Roberts
A swine flu outbreak is dominating the news. The headlines are changing hourly but at the time of this writing it has been confirmed that this new strain of swine flu originated in Mexico and that Americans traveling in Mexico have returned to the U.S. infected with swine flu.

The U.S. Department of State has issued the following Travel Alert:

"
The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens of the health risks of travel to Mexico at this time due to an outbreak of H1N1 "swine flu." The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued an April 27 notice recommending that American citizens avoid all nonessential travel to Mexico at this time. CDC's notice also suggests precautions that travelers and U.S. citizen residents in Mexico can take to reduce their risk of infection while in Mexico. CDC provides recommendations for those who must travel to an area that has reported cases of swine flu, and recommends measures to take following return from an area that has reported cases of swine flu. The complete CDC notice can be found at the following link:
http://www.cdc.gov/travel/. Please check this site frequently for updates..."

As a result of this advisory and in an abundance of caution, major cruise lines that we represent have stopped calling on ports in Mexico and have developed--or are developing--positions with regard to future calls at ports in Mexico, while the outbreak lasts. We have been waiting for these official statements and I wanted to get them to you as quickly as they were available--hence the second newsletter this week. To see these cruise line announcements now, please click http://www.vacationstogo.com/swine_flu.cfm. If you are booked on a cruise that is scheduled to visit Mexico, you may want to check these statements on a regular basis. We will update this page every weekday with any new policies or changes. If you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your Vacations To Go cruise counselor. These itinerary changes disrupt the vacation plans of guests, cost the cruise lines money and deal a harsh blow to anyone in Mexico who relies on tourists for their livelihood. Indeed, there are no winners in the swine flu outbreak, but canceling port calls in Mexico was absolutely necessary to ensure the safety of every passenger and crewmember and to combat the spread of the influenza.I applaud the cruise lines for taking prompt and decisive action. No one knows how long this outbreak will take to run its course but I will be the first to announce the cruise lines' return to Mexico when the swine flu is behind us. That announcement can hardly come soon enough.

Alan Fox
Chairman & CEO

If you were booked on a cruise to Mexico and had to cancel you may want to consider Hawaii as your fun in the sun destination. Choose from a variety of Hawaii vacation rentals during your stay.