Destinations

Ireland – A Perfect Winter Wonderland

Fancy living a low paced lifestyle far from the madding crowd? Head to Ireland, where an old world charm, unavailable in most developed countries, is on offer. The destination offers pleasant rural vistas, a slow paced life style and friendly people. We know you are looking forward to this when winter comes along, and thus Ireland is for sure a favored destination for many travelers.

Ireland can be a wonderful winter wonderland, with short days and long evenings that make cuddling in front of a fireplace an amazingly romantic idea. You’ll find many attractions open throughout the winter, like places you can visit like the castles, high crosses, stone circles, dolmens and cathedrals. read more »

Destinations

The beauty of Damascus

Damascus has understood that tourists can be a real gold mine. Taking the example of restructuring riad in Marrakesh sites, L’Hotellerie Syrian (declared the “pearl of Syria”) went through a “restyling” for a serious return to the ancient splendor of the historic buildings. After this, many numerous boutique hotels appeared, including the Old Vine and Hananiah — which we strongly advise you to pay a visit if you’re in the country.

Destinations

Top 5 Romantic things to do in Venice

If you are looking at places to go for a romantic vacation, you will soon realize that the city of Venice is pretty much on everyone’s mind. Be it your trusted travel expert or a casual traveler, Venice will always top their listing as the best place to go  for a romantic getaway. Its intricate canals and the floating gondolas make Venice an eternal favorite among one and all.

Here are some of the things that you should not miss out when you are in this picture-perfect place:

  • A gondola ride through the canals as you go past the renaissance buildings and the lovely markets of Venice is definitely the most renowned image of Venice and arguably one of the most romantic ways to spend your time in the city. A slow trip through the maze of waterways and bridges will leave you with a lifetime of memories
  • Watching the Grand Canal light up with a million shades as the sun starts setting is arguably one of the most romantic moments you will ever encounter not just on your vacation to Venice, but in an entire lifetime. Watch the dusk take over from the Rialto Bridge and meander past the wooden Accademia Bridge as you enjoy late evening. Make sure you get one of the hotels nearby on sites like venere.com or hotels with waterfront locations just to ensure you do not miss the Grand Canal sunset.
  • A boat ride to the islands nearby is equally appealing and a journey across the Venetian lagoon to the relatively secluded and stunning islands will give you plenty of amazing sights and sounds to take in.
  • Enjoy the Sunset on St Mark’s Square as you take in the many shades of the city and marvel at the backdrop of the Basilica San Marco. A lovely way to spend a great evening enjoying!

The Dorsoduro district next to the Grand Canal is the more rustic part of Venice where life slows down even further (if that is possible) and the streets become narrower and the village atmosphere takes over. Spend some time here leisurely as you shop through many of its gift stores

Destinations

Copenhagen: Viva la revolucion!

Even though the summit on global warming held here in December last year was considered by many a failure, the Danish capital was confirmed as one of the most “green” cities in Europe. True protagonists of the “green revolution” are the long bicycle trail that traverses each city thoroughfare. Here bicycles can be rented for free. And because Copenhagen got through the so-called “re-qualification of urban areas”, Nørrebro, once an ill-famed neighborhood, now has turned into one of the preferred areas of students and intellectuals who meet in the Sankt Hans Torv Piaza. Fun is guaranteed, and the premises are open till morning.

Destinations

Sri Lanka: The Tropical Zoo

Even if military checkpoints still remind us of the 25 years of civil war, Sri Lanka, the island-garden off the Indian Ocean coast, may finally get to show tourists its fabulous treasures. To be provide easier access to Nilaveli Beach, a resort located on the east coast, 275 km from the capital Colombo, a new airport in Matara will shortly be inaugurated. This town was decimated by the tsunami in 2004 but it’s now full of guesthouses and boutique hotels.

An example? Sun House: with its colonial style, it seems as if it has been built for the Queen of England… We’re sold!!!

Destinations Travel Deals

Give the tourist rush a miss by exploring the awesome outdoors of Tenerife

The most populated island in all of Spain and the largest of the seven Canary Islands, Tenerife is an effervescent hub for tourism and activity.

With great connectivity thanks to the many flights to Tenerife, you will have no problem in reaching this beautiful and at times, breathtaking island.

But considering both the population here and the simple fact that over 5 million tourists visit it on an annual basis, it can be a pretty crowded place indeed, if you do not know exactly where to go to find some peaceful stay.

With events like the Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, which is one of the largest carnivals in the world, escaping the crowd might be the best way to explore the hidden beauty of this mesmerizing island.

There are plenty of ways you can do this and avoid the usual tourist package of fancy hotels, expensive stays and lovely evenings that are bound by time next to the pool. The island is blessed with wide variety of geographical features that include gorgeous valleys and ravines, the Dorsal Mountain Range that is spread across Tenerife, the spectacular and uneven contours of the massifs and awe-inspiring rock formation thanks to the volcanic nature of this fabulous island. You can also explore the vast protected area (which pretty much makes up almost half of entire Tenerife) which includes the wild beauty of the famous Parque Nacional del Tiede natural forest.

In case you are someone who prefers the wind and waves and the white sandy beaches to the vast stretches of green and imposing mountains, then the rugged coastline has plenty to offer as well. The Montañas Negras in the North-West along with the many rock climbing spots at Mount Tiede will entice adventure sport enthusiasts. From crowded carnivals, to idyllic walkways, Tenerife is a getaway where you can find everything; if you only know where to look!

Destinations

Seoul: Capital of Design

Forget Tokyo. Fans of design have made it clear that one of their preferred destinations is Seoul. Competing with Milan and New York, the capital of South Korea was elected the World Design Capital year. From 17 September until 17 October, the Seoul Design Fair is an event which attracts plenty of visitors — we’re talking a few millions in here.

Destinations

Patagonia: Wine-therapy in Argentinta

A decade ago, a group of adventurers discovered a corner to cultivate fertile grape-vine in Patagonia, San Patricio del Chanar, launching into quality wine production, Black: Merlot, Cabernet and Pinot. To convince yourself just go to Bodega del Fin del Mundo or Enoteca Valle Perdido. Besides tasting, visitors can stay in the 18 rooms available and can avail of the spa that specializes in treatments based on grapes.

Destinations

Algarve among top travel destinations for 2012

If you are a travel enthusiast, then you must be familiar with  Faro and Algarve. The southernmost region of Portugal is renowned for being one of the top travel destinations not just in Europe, but also on the planet. Known for its amazing coastline, wonderful beaches, limestone formations and exotic caves, the region is the third richest in all of Portugal and tourism is the driving force behind its thriving economy.

With economies across the world now starting to get back on track and people far more willing to once again spend cash on luxury vacations, the tourism industry is gaining momentum and the experts at New York Times believe that Algarve is among the best places to visit this year. The region has something for everyone thanks to its mild climate year round and booming luxury hotel industry that is only expanding by the day.

The city of Faro is the ‘seat of the Faro District’ and capital of the Algarve region and the place where your trip kick-starts. Around 7 million international tourists visit the region each year and the best way to get here is obviously flying to Faro. The region is very well connected and flights operate on a daily basis from various parts of Europe and even across the Atlantic.

The limestone caves around Lagos, unending fun on the many beaches and the delectable cuisine, along with this amazing connectivity and the safety of the region make it the tourist hotspot that it is. With a total of 10 million tourists each year and many expatriates from countries like the US, Germany, Britain and Holland coming to spend retirement years here, Algarve tourism industry can only experience an upswing in the years to come.

How about you tell us if the NYT was right or not? Pay Algarve a visit and let us know in the comments below!

Travel Deals

Top 5 Money saving tips to book a cheap holiday

The holiday season is not too far off and if you are seriously thinking about having a great trip that will be both memorable and affordable, this is the time to book your travel. Here are a few money-saving tips, which will help you plan your dream holiday on a budget.

Take advantage of the off season:
You don’t need to travel during the peak holiday seasons. Different parts of the globe have different time periods and seasons where tourist traffic is at its peak. Not only are flight charges higher during this time, but so are hotel rates and prices of other amenities. That is precisely why it is best to enjoy the off-season when there is no rush.

Do not book tickets too early or too late:
One of the biggest mistakes that people make is booking airline tickets way too early. You will not get any great discounts by booking tickets well in advance. Best time to book is approximately 3 months in advance.

Pick hotels smartly:
If you are planning a very small vacation and you would be out for most of the time, then there is no point in opting for a lavish room with expansive hotel TV systems, stylish and luxurious interiors and world-class facilities. Pick something that is both economical and provides the minimum facilities needed.

Look for attractive travel packages:
Instead of picking and booking each of them separately, opt for a travel package from one of the leading travel sites of agencies, which adhere to both quality and relative flexibility. Do double check though on the authenticity of the deals and reliability of the sites before shelling out hard earned cash.

Alternate travel and cheap flight dates:
For domestic travel and holidays, there are far better ways to go around than just flights and often trains and buses can be a lot more fun as you can enjoy the journey as well. Apart from that, surveys show that Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday are the cheapest days to book flights; something everyone can take advantage of…

Air Travel

Southwest credits AirTran Airways for its new services at Des Moines International Airport

One of the industries to have taken the biggest hit in the last few years is the aviation sector. The global economic squeeze along with struggling companies, fewer jobs and pay cuts across the board have resulted in individuals and companies drastically reducing their spendings on trips and holidays.

This along with the several fold increase in fuel rates has left many reeling, but the road to recovery might have just started with many airlines starting to find their feet once again and economies on their way back up.

Southwest Airlines are one of those who seem to be doing ‘just fine’ as they made their entry into the Iowa market riding on the wings of AirTran Airways. The integration of both Southwest and AirTran has meant that new avenues have opened up for both and at the end of the day it is the consumer who benefits the most from it. With AIrTran already having a presence in the state of Iowa, the new service between Des Moines International Airport and Chicago’s Midway International Airport was only a matter of time.

The new expansion from Southwest connects the people of the region with their largest service in the country and with two daily flights now on offer, one can expect greater connectivity and quality service that is better than ever before. While the services of AirTran previously offered just 100 seats, the merger sees Southwest flying a Boeing 737 into Iowa, which will offer 274 seats each day, all seven days of the week.

This definitely great news for business travelers, who now need not wait and change over several flights to reach their destination and will have an easy access to Chicago, from where they can easily fly to any other domestic and international destination. Great news for the people of Des Moines indeed!