Travelrific® Travel Journal

A blog for travel enthusiasts. Listen to our podcasts on the blogroll at Travelrific® Radio. Visit our Wanderful Places® Travel Shop for travel-inspired merchandise!

Archive for November, 2011

A Centenary of Tourism

By Linda Tancs

Australia’s Rottnest Island, directly off the Perth coast, has a rich military, marine and cultural history that’s been engaging tourists these past 100 years.   With the start of World War I the Department of Defence commandeered the Island for use as an internment and prisoner of war camp from 1914 to the end of 1915.   In preparation for World War II a defense program became known as the Rottnest Island Fortress, consisting of the Oliver Hill fort, Bickley Point fort with two six-inch guns and quarters at Bickley and Army barracks at Kingstown that serve as an environmental education center today.  The island also offers four heritage trails to highlight its cultural and marine history: Bickley Battery Heritage Trail, Rottnest Ship Wrecks Heritage Trail – Land and Water, Vincent Way Heritage Trail and a self-guided Historic Buildings Trail.  Only 25 minutes away by ferry, you’ll have no excuse to miss the annual Swim Thru Rottnest in the crystal clear waters off Rotto on 3 December.

Share

Cunard Will Tie the Knot

By Linda Tancs

Cunard recently announced that, for the first time in its 171-year-history, it will begin performing marriages aboard its fleet when it changes its ships’ registry from England to Bermuda.  Unlike Bermuda, English law requires that weddings be performed in public venues on land.  Wedding packages for spring 2012 will be sold beginning next month.

Share

A Haunted Jaunt in Ohio

By Linda Tancs

It’s no wonder that the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio has seen its share of Hollywood film sets considering its imposing architecture comprising Victorian Gothic, Richardsonian Romanesque and Queen Anne styles.  The reformatory’s doors first opened in 1896 and closed in 1990.  The inmates may be gone in the physical sense, but many would say it’s still a spirited place.  The prison recently announced its ghost hunt schedule for 2012, a series of serious but informal attempts to document paranormal activity at the castle-like structure.  Check-in begins at 7 p.m.  You won’t be locked down for the night, but if you drive out of the gated area you won’t be getting back in.  Skittish ghostbusters might want to join in on the evening ghost walk instead.   You will be taken on a two-hour, guided tour to the hot spots where reports have been made about paranormal activity.  Whatever you believe, you’ll see one of the country’s most historic structures.

Share

71 Laps in Brazil

By Linda Tancs

Seventy-one laps and over 4 km to a racing champ this weekend in Sao Paolo as the engines get ready to rev for Brazil’s Formula 1 Grand Prix.   One of the toughest tracks on the circuit, Interlagos is just a few miles from downtown Sao Paolo, and its configuration offers spectators amazing views at over half the course.  Don’t miss the driver’s parade on Sunday at 12; gates open at 7 a.m.

Share

Lady Marmalade

By Linda Tancs

Dundee, Scotland is known for science.  Science themes are explored at Dundee’s Sensation science center with some 60 hands-on exhibits, and Mills Observatory is the only full time public observatory and planetarium in the UK.  Lesser known may be the science of marmalade production.  Dundee has a long association with marmalade, reportedly beginning in the 1700s.  The tale goes that a local grocer bought a ship’s cargo of oranges when the vessel docked in Dundee harbor during a storm.  He passed the oranges on to his wife who used them to make a fruit preserve that proved vastly popular.   True or not, Dundee and marmalade go together like peanut butter and jelly–uh, make that marmalade.

Share

South Africa’s City of Roses

By Linda Tancs

Except for its annual festival of roses, you might think that South Africa’s “City of Roses” Bloemfontein (“fountain of flowers” in Dutch) is just a waypoint for oenophiles headed to Stellenbosch or art buffs on their way to Jo’burg.  Not so!  This city, the judicial capital of South Africa, has year-round delights.  For instance, Franklin Game Reserve on Naval Hill is currently the only nature reserve in the world to be located in the middle of a city.  There’s also Oliewenhuis Art Museum, a neo-Dutch style mansion, formerly a residence for the Governor General of the Union of South Africa and now one of the youngest art museums in the country. You’ll also enjoy a landscape of 70 hectares of grass and woodlands at the Botanical Gardens, or take a gander at the Big Five within the sanctuary of the Zoo.  Whatever you do, you’re sure to find a reason to stay awhile.

Share

A Mexican Summit

By Linda Tancs

At 18,491 feet, Pico de Orizaba is the highest summit in Mexico and the third highest in North America.  Known as Star Mountain by the Aztecs, its permanent mane of snow and ice attracts novice and professional mountaineers the world over.  Fly into Mexico City, Pueblo or Veracruz.  From there you can take a taxi, private driver or bus to Tlachachuca, a village at the base of the mountain, and begin your adventure.

Share

%d bloggers like this: