This week in travel news…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BeerThe best cruise lines for comedy

Fran Golden, USA Today

Cruise ship comedy used to be a joke. No more. Today top-rated comics and comedy acts vie for the steady work, good money and solid crowds.

Cruise lines typically have some family friendly comedy shows that are expletive free. But that rule doesn’t necessarily apply at late-night, adults-only shows – which feature more or less the same comedy fare you’ll find in clubs on land (though opinionated politics jokes may be muted).  Read more.

KoreaDespite warnings, more Western tourists are traveling to North Korea

Steven Borowiec , LA Times

It’s the kind of publicity that would seemingly scare off sightseers: A trio of U.S. citizens detained in North Korea pleading for help last week in brief, rarely granted media interviews.  Read more.

Treasures5 overlooked world treasures

Katia Hetter, CNN

You’ve already hiked up to Machu Picchu and climbed up and down the thousands of stairs of the Great Wall of China. We bet you’ve also stood awestruck before the Hagia Sofia and the Taj Majal.  Read more.

ComedyCheers! Another Cruise Line Brews Own Craft Beer

Theresa Norton Maser, TravelPulse

Cruising and beer have always gone hand-in-hand. Now, however, it appears that the guzzlers appreciate the fancier brews, and Princess Cruises is the latest cruise line to give it to them.  Read more.

 

GlobalTourismLet’s Celebrate Global Tourism’s Contributions on September 27 – World Tourism Day

Ed Fuller, Forbes

Later this month, on September 27, people around the world will mark World Tourism Day as they have every year since 1980.  That’s the day the United Nations designated as the one on which we recognize the positive contributions that global tourism makes each day to the world’s economic, cultural, political and social life.  Read more.

 

AppleHow the new Apple innovations may change travel

Mark Murphy, FoxNews

Apple’s announcement last week about its new iPhone 6, Apple Watch and Apple Pay should be exciting for travelers for all the new functionality it will give people.   Read more.

 

Don’t miss Top Cruise Deals from Princess®

PrincessCruises_TC_9.9.14Looking to save on your next sailing? Princess Cruises® makes it easy with Top Cruise Deals, a weekly selection of their best cruise savings.

Enjoy signature Princess® amenities, including the giant poolside screen known as Movies Under the Stars®, the haven for adults called The Sanctuary, and the multi-story Atrium with boutiques, lounges and more, at some of the cruise line’s best rates.

These deals are known to go fast, so visit Top Cruise Deals today. Better yet, sign up for email alerts to get the latest!

To learn more about Princess Cruises®, contact your local travel agent, call 1-800-774-6237, or go to princess.com.

 

Collette Releases 2015-2016 Worldwide Travel Guide

Collette 9.16U.S.-based tour operator Collette has released its 2015-2016 Worldwide Travel Guide featuring over 160 travel experiences that take you beyond the destination to connect with the locals and be immersed in different cultures, where you’ll experience the most sensational sights, sounds and sumptuous creations.

 

Brochure highlights include:

  • 29 new tours: Classic Danube, Portugal’s Douro River Cruise & Santiago de Compostela, Shades of Ireland Family Discovery, Spectacular Scandinavia, Spirit of the Emerald Isle, Splendid Sicilia, The Complete South America, Treasures of the Nile, Winter in Yellowstone, and Wonders of Newfoundland, and our entire Spotlights series.
  • Combined cruise and land tours: Cruising the Best of Scandinavia and Italian Lakes and Greek Islands.
  • River cruise tours, such as Heart of Russia and Springtime Tulip River Cruise, which feature small intimate vessels for travel through a variety of channels.
  • Personal adventures with small group tours under Explorations with just 12-28 passengers. Tour examples: Italy’s Treasures and Inspiring Iceland.
  • Collette Family: Shades of Ireland Family Adventure, London and Paris Family Adventure and Italy Family Discovery.
  • Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Garden Holidays like Eternal Gardens of Rome and The Beauty of Britain. An exclusive partnership with the esteemed RHS, this line of tours offers an insider’s look at the world’s greatest gardens combined with the thrill of international guided travel.
  • Spotlights tours like Spotlight on Rome, Spotlight on the French Riviera, and Spotlight on Madrid. This line of tours illuminate the world’s most remarkable destinations, during a relaxed single hotel stay.

 

To request your brochure, visit https://www.gocollette.com/contact-collette/our-brochures or call 855-370-8687.

 

Celebrate California’s Birthday by Booking with Collette!

Collette 9.9On September 9, 1850, 164 years ago, California became the 31st state! Celebrate all this state has to offer by joining Collette on a Californian Adventure. Collette offers many exciting tours to California, discover which one you’d like to embark on first! Journey along California’s thrilling coast, get to know some of America’s most picturesque cities, or sit back and relax as the incredible scenery and famous vineyards come together, creating a one-of-a-kind experience. Don’t miss the opportunity to create unforgettable memories on tour with Collette. Featuring the perfect combination of included excursions and free time to explore this fabulous state on your own, we are sure this will be an experience you’ll truly cherish. Check out these tours today!

Collette tours to California include:

California New Year’s Getaway, 5 days starting at $1449*

  • Be one of the nearly one million spectators to line the Tournament of Roses Parade route while sitting in your reserved section seats.
  • Celebrate the New Year at a Gala Dinner Dance with live entertainment and a champagne toast to the New Year.
  • Attend Bandfest, featuring selected bands from all over the country that will perform in the parade, giving you a chance to see these talented musicians, dancers and auxiliary performers in action.
  • Enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to view the floats from the Rode Parade in their final stage of decorating.

California Coast, 9 days starting at $2349*

  • Stay in Yosemite National Park and receive firsthand experiences of its towering waterfalls and unique rock formations.
  • Travel 17 Mile Drive, the scenic bypass lining the Pacific Ocean, and see such landmarks as the Lone Cypress Tree, that flat top evergreen symbolic of Pebble Beach.
  • Explore the seashore village of Santa Barbara and see why its nickname is “The American Riviera.”
  • A 2-night stay in San Diego at the end of your trip that includes a perfect balance of sightseeing and leisure time.

 

Pacific Northwest & California, 8 days starting at $1999*

  • Learn about one of America’s greatest volcanic eruptions with a visit to Mount St. Helens Visitor Center.
  • Travel along the magnificent Bandon Beach Loop in Bandon State Natural Area to see the famed Face Rock.
  • Enjoy dinner on Pier 39 and experience postcard views of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Stop in the picturesque coastal town of Gold Beach, known for amazing wildlife including bald eagles, cormorants, seals and blue heron.

 

Spotlight on San Francisco, 5 days starting at $1649*

  • Take an exciting tour of the San Francisco including highlights such as Twin Peaks and the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Experience the beautiful coastline along the 17 Mile Drive while en route to the seaside city of Monterey and its famous Cannery Row.
  • Take a day trip to nearby Napa Valley and enjoy an elegant lunch aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train.

 

Trains, Wineries & Treasures of Northern California, 9 days starting at $2299*

  • Experience the city of San Francisco during dinner overlooking the bay and on a highlight-packed city tour.
  • Enjoy the incredible beauty of one of America’s most beloved national parks, Yosemite.
  • Glide along the pristine waters of Lake Tahoe and marvel at the inspiring scenery.
  • Journey on a splendidly restored Pullman car as you travel through picturesque Napa valley at an unhurried pace.

 

Departures are limited and space is filling quickly. To book your tour, visit www.gocollette.com or call 855-370-8687.

 

*Rates are per person, land only, double occupancy.

 

It’s Not Too Late to Book with Collette!

Collette 9.2There are still plenty of seats available on some of Collette’s most popular holiday tours! But hurry, space is filling quickly and you don’t want to miss out on the holiday adventure of a lifetime! Collette offers several holiday tours including both U.S. and European destinations. Experience once-in-a-lifetime holiday traditions from all around the world.  Embark on a glorious holiday adventure through the traditional Christmas markets of Central Europe. Soak up the scenery of the beautifully decorated southern towns. These unique tours combine the excitement of the season with fun filled holiday activities. Book your getaway for this holiday season, now!

Collette holiday tours include:

Christmas on the Danube, 9 days starting at $1749* (Available departures 11/28, 11/29, 12/4, 12/5)

  • Visit and shop in the famous Christmas markets of Rothenburg, Nuremberg, Regensburg, Passau and Vienna, featuring festive lights and decorations.
  • Explore Würzburg, Germany, known as “the jewel of the Main River.”
  • Cruise through the Wachau Valley, the most picturesque region of the Danube River, dotted with magnificent castles and small riverside towns.
  • See the first stone bridge build over the Danube, a 1,400-foot-long span built in the 12th century.
  • Available departure dates:  November 29, 2014 and December 5, 2014

Spotlight on New York City Holiday, 5 days starting at $2199* (Available departures 12/1, 12/8, 12/11)

  • Shop for holiday treasures along esteemed Fifth Avenue.
  • Experience the incredible Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall featuring the Rockettes.
  • Experience the thrill of an included Broadway show.
  • Board a ferry and cruise to the Statue of Liberty.

Classic Christmas Markets, 9 days starting at $1599* (Available departures 12/1, 12/13)

  • Enjoy ample time for shopping in five European Christmas markets.
  • Local residents guide you through the streets and cultures of these impressive cities: Innsbruck, Munich, Nuremberg, Würzburg and Strasbourg.
  • Experience holiday spirit in Germany, Austria and France, where the tradition of “Christkindlesmarkts” began over 600 years ago.
  • Enjoy one of Europe’s finest old town squares and cathedrals while visiting Strasbourg, France.

California New Year’s Getaway, 5 days starting at $1449* (Available departure 12/29)

  • Be one of the nearly one million spectators to line the Tournament of Roses Parade route while sitting in your reserved section seats.
  • Celebrate the New Year at a Gala Dinner Dance with live entertainment and a champagne toast to the New Year.
  • Attend Bandfest, featuring selected bands from all over the country that will perform in the parade, giving you a chance to see these talented musicians, dancers and auxiliary performers in action.

 

Departures are limited and space is filling quickly. To book your tour, visit www.gocollette.com or call 855-370-8687.

 

*Rates are per person, land only, double occupancy.

Experience River Cruising Like Never Before!

Collette - 8.26Collette offers several exciting river cruise tours. These unique tours feature small, intimate vessels for a more personal experience as you travel through a variety of waterways. Experience the best of both land and sea as you sail past breathtaking scenery, pausing along the way in quaint villages and lively cities. Take in the essence of the region aboard your luxury cruise ship. Cruise along the Douro River through a region rich in culture and beauty. Admire the glory of the blooming Dutch tulip fields. Cruise through the Wachau Valley, the most picturesque region of the Danube River. Take in the tranquil surroundings on a cruise upstream in the Yangtze River. The possibilities are endless on tour with Collette. These unique tours are filled with excitement and adventure!

Collette river cruising tours include:

Cruising the Yangtze River, 16 days starting at $2299*

  • Take a relaxing 4-night cruise on the Yangtze River.
  • Savor a variety of traditional Chinese food including Peking Duck, noodles and dumplings.
  • Meet a Chinese calligraphy master and learn how to write using this ancient art.
  • Visit the picturesque Juyongguan section of the Great Wall to walk along this celebrated structure.

     

Portugal’s Douro River Cruise & Santiago de Compostela, 13 days starting at $3799*

  • Enjoy a relaxing 7-night Douro River Cruise.
  • Enjoy two wine cellar visits including tastings of the world-famous Port wine.
  • Visit historic Salamanca, one of Spain’s most beautiful cities and a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Visit the Baroque Mateus Palace and gardens for a glimpse into the aristocratic lifestyle.

     

Springtime Tulip River Cruise, 9 days starting at $2049*

  • Unpack once for a relaxing 7-night river cruise on the waterways of Holland and Belgium.
  • Visit the world-famous Keukenhof Gardens with its enormous, colorful tulip fields.
  • Admire Holland’s windmills of Kinderdijk – a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Explore the historic cities of Arnhem, Ghent and medieval Bruges.

     

Classic Danube, 11 days starting at $2949*

  • Enjoy a relaxing 7-night Danube River cruise.
  • Explore Würzburg, Germany, known as “the jewel of the Main River,” and lovely medieval town of Rothenburg.
  • Cruise through the Wachau Valley, the most picturesque region of the Danube River.

Experience an up-close look at the historic cities that sit along the banks of the Danube.

 

Departures are limited and space is filling quickly. To book your tour, visit www.gocollette.com or call 855-370-8687.

 

*Rates are per person, land only, double occupancy.

Get the First Look at Collette Spotlights!

Collette 8.19Collette has introduced a brand new product line called Spotlights that illuminate the world’s most remarkable destinations!  Enjoy unpacking just once with a single relaxed hotel stay and immerse yourself in the fanfare of a grand city or unwind in the timeless countryside. These tours offer a more in-depth exploration where travelers have a chance to relax and experience daily life. Take a once-in-a-lifetime walk on the Great Wall in Beijing, capture the essence of Paris as you cruise the Seine River, learn to cook New Orleans-style, or enjoy a rousing night of traditional Irish entertainment in Dublin. These new, shorter tours will appeal to any kind of traveler, there’s something for everyone to enjoy! Tour locations include: London, Paris, the French Riviera, Dublin, Rome, Florence, Venice in Winter, Barcelona, Madrid, New York, New Orleans, San Antonio, San Francisco and Beijing.

 

Tour highlights include:

 

  • The Spotlight on Dublin, 7 days starting at $1549*
  • Embark on a comprehensive Dublin city tour highlighting St. Patrick’s Cathedral, O’Connell Street, Grafton Street, Phoenix Park and the magnificent rows of stately Georgian town homes.
  • Step aboard the “Jeanie Johnston,” an authentic recreation of one of Ireland’s famous “famine ships” and learn about the experience shared by millions of Irish who sought out a better life in the New World.
  • Enjoy a tour of the Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin’s historic jail that now offers a unique window on Irish nationalism.
  • Step into Irish daily life during an evening of food and folklore at one of the oldest pups in Ireland, the Brazen Head, complete with an unforgettable storytelling session.

     

  • Spotlight on New Orleans, 5 days starting at $1349*
  • Get to know the city’s famous French Quarter on a walking tour featuring the majestic St. Louis Cathedral, one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks.
  • Roll up your sleeves and prepare to discover how to cook New Orleans style during a unique cooking demonstration at the New Orleans School of Cooking.
  • Journey through Louisiana’s swamp on a cruise narrated by your captain.
  • Enjoy an elegant dinner at the Court of Two Sisters, one of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants.

     

  • Spotlight on Paris, 7 days starting at $1749*
  • Savor French cuisine and enjoy breathtaking views of Paris as you dine at the Eiffel Tower.
  • Enjoy a tasting and tour at a champagne cellar during a visit to the world-famous champagne village of Épernay.
  • Enjoy a sumptuous dinner complete with wine, champagne and a delightful cabaret show at the Paradis Latin, Paris’ oldest cabaret theatre.
  • Embark on a locally-guided tour of Paris highlighting the Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame Cathedral, Champs-Elysees, Place de la Concorde and the magnificent Place Vendome.

     

  • Spotlight on Beijing, 9 days starting at $829*
  • Savor a variety of traditional Chinese food including Peking duck, hand-pulled noodles, and dumplings.
  • Visit the sprawling Forbidden City, an elaborate palace complex that was the home to 24 Chinese Emperors over the course of almost 500 years, and enjoy a tour of the spectacular Treasure Hall.
  • Take a once-in-a-lifetime walk on the awe-inspiring Great Wall.
  • Visit China’s national treasure, the famous giant pandas, at Beijing Zoo.

     

    Departures are limited and space is filling quickly. To book your tour, visit www.gocollette.com or call 855-370-8687.

     

    *Rates are per person, land only, double occupancy.

All Aboard!

Scenic, Swiss Alps, Valais, Switzerland, Europe.Explore dramatic railways, scenic lakes, stunning landscapes and charming towns with Collette on these unique tours which allow you to travel by train! Enjoy the cultural experiences in charming villages in the heart of Europe, journey through the beautiful Canadian Rockies, or discover the hidden treasures of Northern California. Relive train travel in the days of old as you are rocked to sleep in your private accommodations aboard VIA Rail’s The Canadian.  Visit the world famous California State Railroad Museum. Take in panoramic Alpine views with rides on the GoldenPass, Glacier Express and Bernina Pass. Countless unforgettable experiences await. Join Collette and partake in your railway adventure, check out these tours today!

Collette tours by train:

 

Alpine Lakes and Scenic Trains, 10 days starting at $2699

  • Enjoy panoramic Alpine views with rides on the GoldenPass, Glacier Express and Bernina Pass.
  • Cruise Lake Como on a traditional open-air commuter ferry.
  • Soak up the mountain air with two nights in the Alpine village of Zermatt and a night in the resort town of St. Moritz.
  • Enjoy traditional regional cuisine such as cheese fondue and apple strudel along with other culinary delights.

     

Canadian Rockies by Train9 days starting at $3199

  • Board VIA Rail’s The Canadian and enjoy the breathtaking scenery as the train whisks you past the peaks of the Monashee Mountains, the stunning Pyramid Falls cascading down Mt. Cheadle, glistening glaciers of the Albreda Icefields and Mt. Robson – the highest peak of the Rockies.
  • Stand on the amazing 1,000-foot thick Athabasca Glacier during an exciting excursion at the Columbia Icefield.
  • Spend two nights at the magnificent Fairmount Banff Springs Hotel, properly nicknamed the “Castle in the Rockies.”
  • Enjoy a stop at Peyto Lake – a turquoise glacier-fed lake that evokes pure serenity.

     

Trains, Wineries & Treasures of Northern California9 days starting at $2299

  • Journey on a splendidly restored Pullman car as you travel through picturesque Napa Valley at an unhurried pace.
  • Experience the city of San Francisco during dinner overlooking the bay on a highlight-packed city tour.
  • Enjoy the incredible beauty of one of America’s most beloved national parks, Yosemite.
  • Glide along the pristine waters of Lake Tahoe and marvel at the inspiring scenery.

 

Departures are limited and space is filling quickly. To book your tour, visit www.gocollette.com or call 855-370-8687.

 

*Rates are per person, land only, double occupancy.

This week in travel news…

 

 

 

 

 

luxurycruise7 awesome perks of sailing with a luxury cruise line

There are lots of cool perks that come with cruising on a luxury ship. Beyond the gourmet meals and private shore excursions, though, what really defines the experience is the service. Your suitcases will be unpacked before you realize they made it to your room, and you won’t have to think twice about making dinner reservations, even on land … but that’s only the beginning. Read more.

hotelamenities14 ridiculous hotel amenities

Private pools, flat-screen TVs, mega liquor bottles.  Been there, seen it, drunk that.  Hotel amenities these days are as much a ploy to get you to gush about them to your friends back home as they are to make your stay comfortable.  Read more.

CheapVacayHow to take a great (and cheap!) vacation

Breaking away from the grind in favor of long-term travel is more financially accessible than many people think.  Being frugal did the trick for me, allowing me to travel for most of 2013. If it’s a priority, you can make it happen. Here’s how I did it.  Read more.

CharityCruisingCharity cruises: enjoy yourself while giving back

When you take a cruise you don’t necessarily have to leave the real world behind. Before or after you enjoy rum drinks, explore the buffet, luxuriate in the spa and join the conga line there is opportunity to give back.  Read more.

 

NudeBeachFrance Declares Topless Sunbathing Out, Coverage In

If you’re headed to the French Riviera soon, you’re gonna want to pack a bikini top. Topless sunbathing is seeing a massive decline on the country’s famous beaches, according to a buzzed-about recent piece in French ELLE.  Read more.