Travel Feed

Round the World Cruise

The ultimate round-the-world cruise for £194k with Viking Ocean Cruises

The world's longest cruise is being offered by Viking Ocean Cruises. It lasts eight months and includes explorations of the world's most thrilling landscapes, from the Great Barrier Reef to the Amazon rainforest. But only lottery-winners and plutocrats need apply for the entire trip - you can join the cruise for as little as a week at a time. To book a more standard room for the whole trip, prices start at £66,990, though, it has to be said, for top dollar, you do get the experience of a lifetime, writes Lesley Bellew. Unless your travel bucket list includes a visit to the International Space Station, you are likely to tick off everything on it.


The Norwegian island that abolished time: 'You can cut the lawn at 4am'

Sommarøy island in Norway
Sommarøy island in Norway, whose 350 residents want to escape the tyranny of the clock. Photograph: Anna Berkut/Alamy

The 350 residents of Sommarøy in the land of the midnight sun are hoping to free themselves from the tyranny of the clock by declaring the small Norwegian island the world’s first time-free zone.

“All over the world, people are characterised by stress and depression,” Kjell Ove Hveding, the leader of the campaign on the island, west of Tromsø and inside the Arctic circle, told the Norwegian public broadcaster NRK.

“In many cases this can be linked to the feeling of being trapped by the clock. We will be a time-free zone where everyone can live their lives to the fullest … Our goal is to provide full flexibility, 24/7. If you want to cut the lawn at 4am, then you can do it.”  MORE


TripAdvisor names the most-booked tourist experience in each U.S state

TripAdvisor names the most-booked tourist experience in each U.S state

From glacier gazing in Alaska to speedboat rides in Florida, these are the trips that melted the TripAdivsor switchboard last year. As it were. Pictured are the top attractions in South Dakota (top left), Alaska (top right), Illinois (bottom left) and Hawaii (bottom right). Which is your favorite?


BEST USA BEACHES 2019

Hawaii's Kailua beach is named the best in the US for 2019 by 'Dr. Beach'

The beach in Oahu has been selected as the best stretch of sand by Stephen Leatherman, a coastal scientist and professor at Florida International University, who compiles the annual 'Dr Beach' list. Kailua Beach Park (top left) came top thanks to its soft sand, clear water and stunning views. Second in the list is Ocracoke Beach, North Carolina (top right); third is Grayton Beach State Park in Florida (bottom left) and fourth is Coopers Beach in New York (bottom right).


Travel in Luxury-The Best Hotels

Forbes Travel Guide reveals the world's best hotel rooms for 2019

They are the hotel rooms that are, according to the inspectors - 'perfect'. Forbes Travel Guide has unveiled its list of the world's best hotel rooms for 2019 - and they all received maximum marks. Undercover reviewers stayed at hundreds of properties across the globe assessing them on comfort, convenience, cleanliness and maintenance. And according to Forbes, those on the best-of list have 'rooms and bathrooms that are not only beautiful, but exceptionally comfortable, functional and elegantly appointed with special touches such as high-quality linens, an array of luxurious bath amenities and well-designed technology'. Pictured clockwise from top left: The Wynn Macau; Bulgari Hotel London; The Encore Macau and the Park Hyatt New York.


BIG BOY Makes Historic DEBUT-under it's own power

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Union Pacific’s Big Boy 4014 releases steam during a ceremony at the Cheyenne Depot on Saturday, May 4, 2019.

The world’s biggest and most powerful steam locomotives is chugging to its big debut after five years of restoration work.

Big Boy No. 4014 rolled out of a Union Pacific restoration shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming, on Saturday morning as hundreds of spectators looked on. From there, it goes to Ogden, Utah, to help celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad.

Big Boy engines hauled freight between Wyoming and Utah in the 1940s and 1950s. Of the 25 Big Boys built, eight remain, but only this one will be operational.

The Big Boy locomotive measures longer than two city buses. It’s heavier than a Boeing 747 jet plane fully loaded with passengers, yet powerful enough to pull 16 Statues of Liberty over a mountain range.

VIDEO:

See our previous story: Big Boy coming through! Locomotive of the Union Pacific Railroad to be restored to its former glory


Around the world in 15 days!

New York City traveling duo make it to each of the seven Wonders of the World in just 15

New Yorkers Louis Frangella, 28, and Courtney Kaiser, 26, left their Long Island home on April 7 and before they set foot back on American soil just over two weeks later, the engaged couple had visited the Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal, Petra in Jordan, the Roman Colosseum, the site of Christ the Redeemer in Brazil, Machu Picchu and Chichen Itza. Their favorites were Machu Picchu and Petra, in Jordan, but the entire experience was one for a lifetime. The two shared snapshots throughout the journey on their Instagram page under an account aptly named ' @wonderchasers.' Frangella won the opportunity through a competition where he works at Howard Hughes Corporation and Kaiser joined him on the fully-funded adventure.


Big Boy No. 4014 fired up for the first time; May 12 excursion announced

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Big Boy No. 4014, shown at Pomona, Calif., in November 2013, is hot once more.
CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Union Pacific said Wednesday steam shop crews lit a fire in Big Boy 4-8-8-4 No. 4014 for the first time in 60 years on April 9. It was the first time the engine was fired up as an oil burner.

The locomotive, which has been under rebuild since 2016, will undergo further testing before its debut on a trip on Ogden, Utah, on May 4 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the first transcontinental railroad.

The railroad also said tickets will go on sale April 15 for a one-way May 12 trip from Ogden to Evanston, Wyo., with No. 4014 doubleheading with 4-8-4 No. 844. This would be the first opportunity for any of the public to ride behind No. 4014.

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Route 66, America's 'Mother Road,' revs back to life

For decades, Route 66 captured the imagination of travelers the world over, offering a glimpse of a bygone era of American history, when people hit the road in search of adventure and a better life.

For decades, Route 66 captured the imagination of travelers the world over, offering a glimpse of a bygone era of American history, when people hit the road in search of adventure and a better life.

The two-lane highway established in 1926 and coined the "Mother Road" by John Steinbeck seemed to encompass the essence of America, threading through eight states from Chicago to Santa Monica.

But after it was decommissioned in the 1980s in favor of larger and faster thoroughfares, Route 66 appeared headed for the dustbin of history as the mom and pop stores, kitschy motels, diners and petrol stations that lined the road gradually shut down.

After it was decommissioned in the 1980s in favor of larger and faster thoroughfares, Route 66 appeared headed for the dustbin of history as the mom and pop stores, kitschy motels, diners and petrol stations that lined the road gradually shut down.

"Entire towns folded up and what had been a 2,400-mile (4,000 kilometer) carnival became to a large extent a 2,400-mile ghost town," explained David Knudson, founder and executive director of the non-profit National Historic Route 66 Federation.

In recent years, however, the iconic road that has been immortalized in countless books, movies, music ("Get your kicks on Route 66"), and a TV series has been experiencing a nostalgia-driven revival that is attracting tourists from around the globe.

- Ultimate road trip -   MORE


Private island off Sicily with 17th century watch tower hits the market for 2 million

image from i.dailymail.co.uk

A rugged private island off the coast of Sicily that boasts a 17th-century watch tower and medieval ruins has hit the market for £1.7million.

The island, called Isola delle Femmine, is an uninhabited, wild 37-acre atoll, almost 1,000 feet from the mainland, close to the city of Palermo.   It is located within a protected marine park that is a hit with both scuba divers and snorkellers due to its vibrant marine life and the ancient Roman relics that lie on the sea bed. The island's focal point is a watch tower on top of a grassy hill that had been part of a defense network around Sicily against pirates.  The building has been abandoned, but the agent listing the island, Romolini Immobiliare, says there is scope to fully restore it.

Other features of the island include ancient Greek and Roman stones as well as a private beach.  Its name translates into English as 'island of women' as legend has it that 13 Turkish criminal maidens were cast adrift on the island as punishment for their bad behaviour.  The island is being sold by Italian countess Paola Pilo Bacci, whose family have owned the land since the 1600s.  She is selling up as the family no longer use it for holidays.

image from i.dailymail.co.ukThe island had at first been put on the market for over £3million (3.5 US) but the asking price has now been lowered to interest more buyers.  Agent Riccardo Romolini, who is marketing the property, told CNN Travel: 'The price at first was €3.5million (£3million) but given nobody showed up we've now lowered it to a flexible range between €1 and €3million (£857,000 and £2.5million), open to offers and negotiations.

'Anywhere close to €2 million (£1.7million) we'd be very interested.'

In the listing, the agent also suggests that the island could be the perfect 'trophy asset'. 


How to enjoy Florida fun without breaking the bank

Florida has all the fun of the fair - mainly because it's jam-packed full of them.

Theme parks, water parks, zoos - the Sunshine State really is a mecca for those looking for an action-packed holiday.

But does going on an American adventure really have to cost the big bucks? Luckily for Florida fans, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment have four fantastic parks and two great-value tickets to enjoy them all.

So here's how YOU can get the most out of your Stateside break...

Theme parks, water parks, zoos - the Sunshine State really is a mecca for those looking for an action-packed holiday, and thanks to SeaWorld Parks, it doesn't have to break the bank
 

Continue reading "How to enjoy Florida fun without breaking the bank" »


TripAdvisor names America’s top beaches and Clearwater steals it AGAIN

1. Clearwater Beach, Pinellas County, Florida 

For the third time in the last four years, Clearwater Beach in Pinellas County, Florida has been ranked No. 1 in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards

Hawaii has another beach in the top 10 - Hapuna Beach, ranked No. 7, on the island of Hawaii.

The eighth and ninth spots are reclaimed by Florida, with St. Augustine Beach ranked No. 8 and Fort Lauderdale Beach ranked No. 9.

Rounding out the top 10 is Driftwood Beach on Georgia’s Jekyll Island.  

 see the full list of the top 25 beaches according to the review website.


A real getaway! Private island in Alaska

If you want to buy a bit of solitutde, it's for sale in Alaska. 

Take in the scenic beauty of Alaska from your very own 3.75-acre private island after Mertz Island went on the market for just over a million dollars.

Stunning pictures show the spectacular views of the lakes and mountains that you can enjoy from the island as well as the exterior of the main residence.

You can buy your very own 3.75-acre private island in Alaska for just $1.25million
The new Pan Abode custom build cedar house sits high facing Sitka Sound

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31 Last Minute Weekend Getaways & Cheap Vacations

image from vacationidea.comMany vacationers decide to plan their trip last minute and there is a great selection of destinations and cheap weekend getaways and vacation ideas to choose from. Look for getaway deals nearby to save time and money - last minute travel is one of the best ways to get a great deal. Although last minute booking can mean less choice in the type of accommodations and activities, it can be a great way to book cheap vacations. Find more affordable ideas and last minute vacation deals from New York CitySan FranciscoSeattleAtlantaSan DiegoLos AngelesChicago and other cities

Check some great places to go on the East, West, South and central areas of the United States.....   


From secluded coves to the restaurants only the locals know about: Discover the hidden gems of Greece

Endless sunshine, magnificent landscapes, beaches you could write a book about - just some of the countless things that are part and parcel of a holiday to Greece.  But while the Acropolis is awe-inspiring and Santorini is a sight for sore eyes, there's also an endless treasure trove of hidden gems to discover in this wondrous country.

From searching out a secluded cove to sitting down to dip freshly-made bread into tzatziki in a tiny taverna, we lift the lid on the secret side to these iconic islands.  Corfu has long been a favourite haunt for holidaymakers from around the world, but there are still plenty of surprises in store on this stunning island.

 

 

If you're looking to discover the authentic pace of Greek village life, head to Sinarades, about 25 minutes away from Corfu town.    First documented in the 15th Century, this ancient village is set on the hills looking down on the awe-inspiring Agios Gordios beach, and was once moved away from the shoreline to protect it from pirates! A simple stroll around the narrow streets in the sunshine will have you feeling in tune with the locals: stress-free.

If you also want to dine like Corfiots, take yourself to the Chrisomalis, a charming taverna which has been serving up traditional dishes for over 150 years! Warm service is in the soul of this homely eatery, where you can enjoy pork chops, swordfish and souvlaki to your heart's content.

Discover the village way of life in Corfu, where rural residents enjoy a similar pace to their ancestors

 

 

While its beaches galore in Greece, you can always go off the beaten track and take in the pine-filled forests or a mountain trek

Kefalonia

With views over the Ionic sea, it's no surprise that Kefalonia has been a base for romantic movies.

But while there's room for blockbusters on this dreamy destination, there's plenty of opportunities for exploring a less mainstream side of island life.

Check out the small port town of Fiskardo in the north. This little water-side wonderland will leave you wanting more - especially as you'll get to know the locals as you wander around.

Sit and have an espresso with the fishermen after they bring back their haul of squid or eat fresh baklava at Melina's cafe. Like the area, it's mouth-wateringly moreish.

Find your own private island with a barely-visited cove in Kefalonia



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-5652279/Discover-hidden-gems-Greece.html#ixzz5FszxuD1I


Fascinating photos from the 1970s reveal Amtrak's early days

From staff sporting designer knee-high boots and hot pants to its vibrant red and purple dining cars, when Amtrak trains launched in 1971 it offered ordinary Americans an exciting new travel experience on a network of 23 routes spanning 43 states.

In 1970 President Richard Nixon introduced the Rail Passenger Service Act to launch the United States' first national 'modern, efficient, intercity railroad passenger service’, with Amtrak born the following year.

Amtrak inherited a number of different historic locomotives from its predecessors but by 1973 unveiled its own models and offered customers a fleet of new or refurbished all-electric passenger cars.

With taglines in the 1970s encouraging travellers to ‘get off your wheels and on to ours’ Amtrak showcased a series of vibrant adverts depicting the freedom of the network. It also took the TurboTrain on a national tour for the public to see it up close, according to Amtrak's archives.

Interiors were modernised with dazzling colourful flourishes and guests could enjoy food and beverages served with signature blue China. In first class, travellers had reclining swivel chairs and all passengers onboard could make use of a phone booth.

Amtrak’s attempt at revitalising rail road journeys is most visible in photos of its staff’s contemporary, designer uniforms of bold red mini-skirts or hot pants and sweaters emblazoned with the company’s inverted arrow logo. The attendant’s look was created to reflect the travel aspiration of their counterparts in the skies. All aboard for a tour of Amtrak's archives.

When Amtrak took over the nation's intercity passenger rail service in 1971, it inherited locomotives and rolling stock obtained from the predecessor railroads. In this photo, the E8 wears Amtrak Phase II livery from 1975
When Amtrak took over the nation's intercity passenger rail service in 1971, it inherited locomotives and rolling stock obtained from the predecessor railroads. In this photo, the E8 wears Amtrak Phase II livery from 1975

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-4084712/Fascinating-photos-1970s-reveal-Amtrak-s-early-days.html#ixzz4W3d75FLE 


Get the Most Out of Your Next Weekend Getaway with Train Travel

Westbound California Zephyr, operated by Amtra...Westbound California Zephyr, operated by Amtrak, in front of the Book Cliffs, between Green River and Floy, Utah, USA. The train is hauled by two General Electric P42DC locomotives. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Convenient, Stress-free Nature of Amtrak Train Travel and the Onboard Experience Enhances Any Weekend Travel Adventure

Do you feel like you need to get away from it all sometimes? A small break from hectic modern life can be both relaxing and invigorating. Remember, getting away doesn't necessarily mean planning a big, elaborate vacation across the globe — some of the most sensational destinations are sprinkled throughout the U.S. and are easily accessible by planning a weekend getaway.

Whether you travel somewhere in your home state or head to another region of the country, traveling by train offers many benefits. First, by skipping congested roads and hectic airports, you can drastically cut stress levels. Additionally, the onboard experience adds a touch of comfort to your weekend travel excursion. With amazing Amtrak customer service, roomy seats, delicious food and many other amenities, you're sure to travel in style no matter where you're headed.

There's a weekend travel deal for any type of traveler. Here are a few ideas that will inspire you to book now and start packing your bags:

Couples are sure to love a long weekend sampling some of the best wines our country has to offer. Book a Napa Valley wine tasting weekend getaway. The area is ideal for car-free travel, meaning travelers can save on gas, vehicle wear and tear, and the hassles that come with driving. There are numerous train routes criss-crossing northern California, including:

 

Why not hit the slopes with your best friends and create memories to last a lifetime? Epic hills and pristine scenery can be found in Vermont. Plan a weekend trip to this gorgeous area and stay at numerous outstanding resorts. Kick start your getaway with a scenic train ride, an excellent way to access the slopes. Remember, Amtrak makes it easy and affordable to travel with ski equipment — allowing you to bring skis free of charge in lieu of a piece of baggage.

 

Continue reading "Get the Most Out of Your Next Weekend Getaway with Train Travel" »


'Swamp cancer' threatens wild ponies at Chincoteague Island

Ponies

In recent months, seven horses have picked up a fungus-like infection in their hoofs and legs at Chincoteague Refuge.

There is a danger lurking, literally, underfoot. In recent months, seven of the horses have picked up a fungus-like infection in their hoofs and legs, probably by stepping in contaminated wetlands. Seven have died, including four that were euthanized Friday at a field hospital set up to treat them on the Chincoteague Fairgrounds.

“Shadow, Lightning, Calceti’n and Elusive Star as well as the others received the very best care money could buy,” Denise Bowden, a spokeswoman for the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company, which manages the herd, announced on Facebook Friday night. “They just couldn’t fight this off.”

Managers of the herd worry that warmer weather will bring yet more infections and, potentially, a serious threat to the beloved ponies, one of the region’s iconic tourist draws and a feature of the Virginia coast for centuries.

“We’re not panicking, but we’ve never faced a situation like this before,” Bowden said as vets were still trying to save the last four ponies the week before Christmas. “It’s been very, very trying.”   MORE

 


USA NEWS Best Winter Vacations

1Some travelers are enchanted by winter's first snowfall, while others are itching to escape the season's cold weather. To help you find the locale that best suits your winter vacation wants and needs, U.S. Newscompiled a list of the best winter destinations based on expert analysis and reader votes. Use 1these ideas to start planning your getaway, and vote for your favorite spots to help determine next year's ranking.

Sun, Snow or in between many love to travel over the winter time. From Hawaiian destinations, to Winter sports events in the Canadian world-renowned ski slopes at Whistler Blackcomb.   Rome, St Lucia, Florida and more.   See some great destinations HERE


The most incredible private island resorts EVER

The most incredible private island resorts revealed

If you're looking for a holiday spot to get escape from it all, then these dreamy private island resorts might tick all the right boxes. Isolated from the mainland and surrounded by sprawling bodies of water, these secluded hotel complexes offer a Robinson Crusoe experience with a luxury twist. Pictured from top left, clockwise to centre: Haggerstone Island in Australia, Ozen by Atmosphere at Maadhoo in the Maldives, Tagomago in Ibiza, Pangulasian Island Resort in the Philippines and San Clemente Palace Kempinski in Venice.


The 50 best beaches in the world for 2018

The Top Beaches

The Mediterranean oasis of Navagio Beach, located on the Greek island of Zakynthos, is named the world's best beach for 2018. It is particularly famous for being the site of an exposed shipwreck. Navagio is only accessible by sea. It sports an annual average 275 days of sunshine. The beach received a perfect 10 for sheer untouched beauty and an eight for both remoteness and sand and water quality. Journalist Erin Miller said: 'It’s something out of a dream. The crystal clear waters lap against this small beach with the bones of an old ship rusting away in the sand. It’s quite literally a once-in-a-lifetime kind of beach'
The Mediterranean oasis of Navagio Beach, located on the Greek island of Zakynthos, is named the world's best beach for 2018. It is particularly famous for being the site of an exposed shipwreck. Navagio is only accessible by sea. It sports an annual average 275 days of sunshine. The beach received a perfect 10 for sheer untouched beauty and an eight for both remoteness and sand and water quality. Journalist Erin Miller said: 'It’s something out of a dream. The crystal clear waters lap against this small beach with the bones of an old ship rusting away in the sand. It’s quite literally a once-in-a-lifetime kind of beach'
Whitehaven Beach in Australia comes in at number two. The four-mile-long stretch of sand earned perfect 10 scores for sheer untouched beauty and remoteness. The beach is on tropical Whitsunday Island, off the coast of Queensland and about 900 miles northeast of Brisbane. The remote beach, which has 292 days of sunshine on average, can only be accessed by sea or air. Greg Barton from Reader's Digest pointed out that it's a most practical paradise: 'A picturesque oasis, Whitehaven Beach is an ideal spot for families looking to fully settle into the laid-back, beach lifestyle, as there are gorgeous camping spots and BBQ facilities'
El Nido or Hidden Beach, on the island of Palawan in The Philippines, finishes third in the ranking. The beach, framed by towering cliffs and lush palm trees, scored highly for both sheer untouched beauty and sand and water quality. It received a seven for remoteness. The beach receives, on average, 231 days of sunshine per year. Travel industry expert Sachin Aggarwal said: 'The wild, vegetation-covered rock formations and crystal clear waters of Hidden Beach will make you feel as if you’ve been dropped into a movie'