Travelrific® Travel Journal

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Archive for July, 2008

Boating Tips for Summer

By Linda Tancs

What better way to enjoy the open skies and starry heavens in summer than to go boating.  Rivers, lakes and open seas are now full of yachts, motor boats and everything in between.  As with any form of transportation, boating needs to be undertaken responsibly.  In addition to Mother Nature’s rip currents, hurricanes and other occurrences, operator-generated errors and omissions wreak havoc from time to time.  The U.S. Coast Guard publishes responsible boating guidelines that every operator and prospective passenger should read.  Ship ahoy!

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Golfers Will Find Paradise in the Balkans

By Linda Tancs

In Bulgaria, golf remains a little-known sport played predominately by foreign investors, diplomats and locals, if the scene at Ravno Pole is any indication.  But it’s the foreign investment that may turn this land of almost 8 million inhabitants into a golf mecca.  Already 19 properties are under development, set to compete with the ski and Black Sea resorts for an influx of tourism that reached the 5 million mark last year.  If Black Sea Rama, a Gary Player signature course, is any indication, it’s the luxe traveler with 15.000 euros to spend on a membership who’s likely to find karma there.  However, this government-supported venture promises to make golf an every man’s (or woman’s) game.  Whatever the case, an uptick in Bulgaria’s tourism image seems assured.

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The Hottest Place on Earth

By Linda Tancs

Summer brings its share of perils–ozone warnings, dust storms, fires, draught and stormy weather.  In some places, the heat is so extreme you might be wishing for your own polar ice cap to float on.  Take Dubai, for instance.  At a mere 40 degrees or so (centigrade, that is) in the shade, the air is so humid now you’d feel like a palm tree in a conservatory.  So why are more and more Europeans flocking to this place in the stoking hot season of summer?  In today’s crushing economic environment, value may be one answer.  Outside of high season (September to May), this up-and-comer’s offerings are more affordable for those wanting a taste of the good life.  And let’s not discount the probable desire of many travelers to witness history in the making as this Gulf resort for the super rich builds the world’s largest shopping mall and highest building.  So there’s more than heat that’s hot about this playground.  Whatever the season, though, those landmarks are likely to be little more than a gleam in your camera lens unless you’re part of the Jet set.

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Splendor in the Sea

By Linda Tancs

As we speak, Carnival’s newest goliath, Splendor, is fast completing its maiden voyage from Genoa to Dover.  After its christening tomorrow, the ship will inaugurate Carnival’s northern European sailings, which includes ports of call in Scandinavia, Germany, Russia and the Netherlands.  The liner also introduces a host of new innovations, such as flat-screen TVs in staterooms, a two-story spa and an improved mid-ship cinematic experience.  A splendiferous ship, indeed.

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Hurricane Preparedness is Key

By Linda Tancs

As the first hurricane of the season rolls across the Caribbean, now is a good time to think about your level of preparedness for a hurricane.  Whether you’re tucked away at home or traveling, think about what you would do in the event of an evacuation.  If you had just moments’ notice to pack and run, or hide, what would you bring with you?  It’s better to prepare in advance rather than bank on a clear head in the midst of an emergency.  Keep a small bag full of useful items that you can use while you ride out the storm, such as paper plates, utensils, non-perishable foods, medications, flashlights, batteries, extra cash, pet supplies, clothing, bedding–you get the idea.  Need more hints?  The National Hurricane Center has guides to help you.

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Use Care in Travel Planning

By Linda Tancs

Travel-minded folk often use summertime to plan their end-of-year holiday getaways.  But as airlines reduce capacity to grapple with soaring operating costs, travelers should be wary of bookings made too far in advance.  With disappearing routes and even less opportunity to get stand-by seats in a shrinking marketplace, you might find yourself holding the proverbial bag.

If you enjoyed this post, please share it on sites such as StumbleUpon, vote for it, or bookmark it. Thanks for your support! Travelrific® was featured as Blog of the Day on NJ.com!

NY Hotel Pampers Women

By Linda Tancs

Following up on our August 28, 2007 post, yet another hotel has opened up a floor exclusively to women guests.  In the heart of New York’s Times Square, the Premier Hotel is apparently intent on living up to its name if the women’s floor amenities are any indication.  A special lift escorts female visitors to a 7-room floor complete with Broadway-style lighted mirrors, roomy robes, bath products, and yoga mats.  Coming soon are spa offerings with local businesses.  Are you ready for your close up?

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U.S. Government Might Be Your Best Travel Agent

By Linda Tancs

The U.S. Department of State is well known for its travel warnings and advisories, but perhaps its best-kept secret is the data you can find on lodging costs through its foreign per diem portal.  So the next time you’re checking out rates on a hotel booking site, why not compare notes with Uncle Sam?  You just might find the bargain you’ve been looking for.

If you enjoyed this post, please share it on sites such as StumbleUpon, vote for it, or bookmark it.  Thanks for your support!  Travelrific® was featured as Blog of the Day on NJ.com!

A Renaissance Wedding Awaits You in German Castle

By Linda Tancs

Summer is high season for the wedding industry.  And for those seeking a fairy tale experience, nothing beats a castle.  So which one will it be?  If Skibo (think: Madonna) or Odescalchi (think: Tom Cruise) leaves you with that “been there/done that” feeling, then consider a German castle nestled in the Weserbergland hills of northern Germany.  Castle Haemelschenburg is one of the most culturally signficant monuments in the area, a richly preserved Renaissance masterpiece situated between Hameln and Bad Pyrmont.  The area has inspired many a lore, including the Pied Piper of Hamlyn and Sleeping Beauty.  Are you ready to create your own legend?  Maybe the medicinal springs and spas of Bad Pyrmont will inspire you.

If you enjoyed this post, please share it on sites such as StumbleUpon, vote for it, or bookmark it.  Thanks for your support!  Travelrific® was featured as Blog of the Day on NJ.com!

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