Monday, July 20, 2009

Greece: Tourist Advice

By Tony Angelo

In this part of our guide to holidays in Greece we focus on the basic tourist information that visitors should know...

Greece offers a wide range of experiences, landscapes and activities. It is famous for its natural beauty, historical sites and nightlife, and of course for its reliably sunny summers and the many beautiful beaches on its islands and coastline, which stretches along the Aegean, Ionian and Mediterranean Seas.

These features attract more than 15 million visitors each year, making this southern European country one of the world's top 20 tourist destinations. While 90% of its tourists come from other European countries, in recent years there have been growing numbers of visitors from other parts of the world too.

Athens and islands such as Corfu, Crete and Rhodes are the major destinations, but other parts of Greece are also rewarding. Travelers wanting a quieter holiday can escape large-scale tourism in many attractive places.

The vast majority of visitors arrive during tourism season, which is April through October, with the peak of the season being July through to August. Outside of this time, most of the country's tourist infrastructure goes into hibernation, particularly on the islands.

While Athens and Thessalonki handle most scheduled international flights, during tourism season charter and low-budget flights from a range of European cities arrive daily at many islands and smaller mainland cities.

A valid passport is necessary to enter Greece. Citizens of some non-EU countries may also need to obtain a visa, but citizens of the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand can stay as long as 90 days without needing a visa.

Greece is considered a safe country to visit in terms of the incidence of theft and violence against visitors. It is neither necessary nor advisable to receive immunization vaccinations before traveling to Greece.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Basic Information on Alaskan Cruises

Alaska, a place dubbed as the "Ice World". Alaska is in fact a beautiful, innate place that offers mountains of glaciers and icebergs. It is also a place where whales and bears live and flourish and it is a place that offers breathtaking scenery of the beauty of Mother Nature. It is also a unique place for cruises offering the best of both worlds, from the naturalistic to the urbane.

Many cruisers who have experienced the splendor of Alaska would attest that they really like their experience in this wondrous place called Alaska. The mountains are towering high. The different kinds of animals that Alaska has are a wonder to watch, these are animals that may not be seen commonly in other places.

The boarder of Alaska has a wide collection of nibbling grass which gives it its mystical color. Many people see Alaska as an ice covered white blanketed land, these grasses makes it a surprise. The coastline gives an outstanding view of sparkling ice formation. The deep water flow fluently and the emerging color goes blue. The sky is being reflected by the shinning glimpse of the sun. The fields of flower and wild grass are stunning.

Cruising along the coastal areas of Alaska can give a view which is invisible from any other route. The cruise will have the chance to witness the action of the massive collection of glaciers as they meet the ocean. Aside from that, the cruiser can also observe the different lifestyle of the people in Alaska. Moreover, they can also have the chance to see different kinds of whales as they play along in their natural habitat.

Most of the Alaskan cruises offer more inland pleasure trips. By having this kind of trip, the vacation cruise can be able to go along into the national parks and discover the innate beauty of nature.

An Alaskan cruise can promise a great trip and accommodating, comfortable amenities. The passenger will not just simply travel around inside the ship, but will have the chance to explore the inner beauties of Alaska mainland through magnificent tours.

The cruising ship automatically parks on a place called the "Town of Tourists". It is a place where the ships unload the passengers. It is a small town which only has 600 or more as a population.

The local people normally guide the tourist in the places they could take their rest. They also serve as the tourist guides as they go around the area. Normally, the tourists outnumber the local population. In most cases, the ratio of the tourists to the locals is 6:1. The local people appreciate the presence of the tourists as they provide more livelihood to their community.

On the other hand, the tourist is being advised not to misbehave and respect the culture of the area as they are just visitors there. The local people are bothered mostly by the invasion of the tourist who only wants to shop and makes fun of their way of life.

It is very advisable to have a cruise line traveling on a balanced route. Balanced route means appreciating the beauty of nature and environment landscape without disturbing the whole systems.

Getting the best deals for the Alaskan cruises is really a great opportunity. To discuss further here are some of the basic steps on how to get discounts on an Alaskan cruise.

* The very first thing to do is to arrange a cruise during the off seasons. As much as possible keep away from the peak seasons of cruise vacations. It would be better if you can schedule your time three to four weeks away from the peak seasons. For instance, an Alaskan traveling cruise normally has its peak season on July and September. Having an Alaskan vacation cruise previously to those dates will surely save a lot of cash.

* Choose which type of cruising ship to use. There are some traveling agencies based in Alaska that pushes a specific line for different reasons. It would be great to do a little homework and research first. Comparing the shipping lines fees and services will save a lot of money.

* As much as possible do not be misled with honey-sweet publicity that promises so much for nothing. Talking with the right travel agency can give very important information that can result to significant savings.

* Have an Alaskan vacation cruise quotation that comprises the port fees and tax revenues. If the traveling agency fails to give that certain information, look for another agency. There must not be hidden fees and uncertain collections. Beware of the port fees that run a couple of hundreds of dollars each for each person. The port fees must be stable and consistent.

* Get an inside cabin. Usually, an inside cabin is the cheapest. Aside from that, the inside cabin can also add comfort to the vacationer. Remember that the weather of Alaska is cold, the inside temperature is much warmer which is more comfortable.

Remember to avoid the stresses in Alaskan cruising, having booked at least two weeks before the departure is recommended. Check out for a list of the cruise trips to Alaska. Always remember that, Alaska's beauty and fineness must not be disturbed. Respecting the nature will make the cruise more enjoyable.

Caterina Christakos is a published author and online entrepreneur. Want to learn how to travel and earn a nice part time or full time income? Go to:

Traveling the Great Lakes

The Great Lakes is composed of the inland lakes of Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. The US states surrounding these lakes are Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Minnesota and New York, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Quebec and Wisconsin provinces of Canada.

The Great lakes comprise one-fifth of the worlds freshwater or a total volume of 6 quadrillion gallons of freshwater. Its total area covers more than 94,000 square miles of water and acts as the watershed of the rivers and streams around them.

Its surroundings are blessed with forests, fertile agricultural lands, and rich mineral resources. As such, it supports a wealthy ecosystem which includes more than 130 rare species of flora, fauna and marine life.

Other Attractions
Tourists can find magnificent sand dunes, rocky shorelines, coastal marshes, savannas, natural forests, prairies, and great landscapes. There are smaller islands which can be found in the middle of the lake that add more beauty and magnificence to the whole region.

Lake Michigan has the worlds largest freshwater sand dunes. Agawa Rock in Lake Superior has manmade pictographs on its rocks. These are believed to be created 200 to 600 years old. Tourists can find sea caves and giant rookeries on the Apostle Islands along the Wisconsin side of the lake.

One can also find rare tree and rock formations which had been formed and have survived all through its hundred year existence, purely of natural interaction with land, water and wind. Of course, everyone would awe the spectacular beauty of the Niagara Falls in Ontario, the miles and miles of white sand beaches, the emerald green forests and blazing sunsets.

The Travel Agencies
With the influx of tourists wanting to tour the Great Lakes, there are several travel agencies that offer their services year round. Before embarking on this kind of trip, it is best to make a list of specific places along the Great Lakes that you want to see. From their, you can browse through the various travel agencies or cruise lines that offer packages to these places. Check for their rates and availabilities and packages when it comes to going in groups.

Here is a list of some travel agencies catering to the Great Lakes:

The Great Lakes Cruise Company
This is a family owned travel agency with an office at Ann Harbor, Michigan. It has been in existence since 1959 and has grown through the years. The company offers water cruises in and around the different lakes and its many islands. It has several cruise ships running at different routes and schedules, making it suitable for the needs of their clients.

The Pearl Seas Cruises
The cruise ship company plies the Great Lakes and the Georgian Bay departing from either Toronto, Ontario or Chicago, Illinois. The trip will pass through the scenic spots of the Great Lakes within an 11 to 12 day period. Its visitors will be entertained while onboard the vessel and will get to interact with the residents of the islands along the way and hike particularly on the Island of Manitoulin.

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises
The Hapag-Lloyd is a subsidiary of the worlds biggest tourism group, the TUI Company. It has the biggest cruise ship that sails through the Great Lakes, the C. Columbus. The ship recently won the awards for being the Worlds Best Ship in the Great Lakes. The Berlitz Publishing Ocean Cruise and Lufthansa City Center gave the award.

For more information on Lake Huron Attractions and Lake Erie Outdoor Vacations please visit our website. &

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Cruise Vacations and What You Need To Know

By Tricia Valenstine

Are you someone that wants to get away but not sure how, or still pondering how you are going to spend those vacation days? Have you ever thought about taking a cruise vacation to somewhere you always wanted to visit? Then maybe you should look into taking a cruise.

Specific cruise lines will have certain activities that may differ from others, just as a starter I will be going over the amenities that mostly all of major cruise lines offer with a couple of them varying in some cases.

If you like to travel then a cruise ship is the way to go. There are cruises that will stop at just about any big port that there is, so if you want to travel to a certain country there is more than likely a cruise ship that will go there.

Cruise ships offer you a wide array of amenities, so there is always plenty of stuff to do when you are on a cruise ship. Swimming pools and spas can be found, along with chairs so that you can lay out and catch some sun.

If you are someone that likes to stay in shape, then you can stop by the gym, which every major cruise ship will have one or more. Besides having a gym on board, many cruises have a track that will circle the entire cruise ship for those that want to go for a jog or a just a walk.

A big one that can be found on all major cruise lines except for Disney and a couple of others are casinos. Gambling is illegal in almost all of the United States, but once the cruise ship gets a certain distance out in the ocean, the casino will open, usually stay open 24 hours for those that want to test their luck.

You can also enjoy great dining, there are many different restaurants and eateries that are spread through cruise ships. So if you are on a 7 day cruise then you can expect to gain about 10 pounds or more, you might as well spoil yourself while you can.

If you are a night owl then you can enjoy clubs aboard a cruise ship, where you can find dancing and cocktails, if you are old enough of course. Every cruise ship will have some sort of activity, parade or show for the night people.

Planning a perfect cruise is not that difficult if you know exactly what you want out of it. The easiest way would be to get a travel agent, if you cannot afford one then make a list of everything that you expect, and a staff member from the specific cruise line will make sure that they can meet your needs.

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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Travel In Provence France

By Pierre J Kallmec

Provence France which is bordered on the west by the Rhone River is a Province in France. The river which is on the western side of the Province forms a common frontier with neighboring Languedoc. On the east the Provence France is bordered by an Italian border. Over all, the Province stretches over one hundred and fifty miles. Provence France spans over a one hundred mile around from Serre-Poncon in the north to the islands of Hyeres in the south.

The Provence France is boarded on the west by the Rhone River which is a fast flowing frontier river. The Durance which is the true artery of Provence was once a seasonally destructive torrent. The river has now tamed by the use of dams. The Durance River curls around a broad valley sluggishly like a snake. These two rivers are really must see sights for those people who are hoping to do some sight seeing in the Provence France.

Provences landscape is filled with many distinct contrasts and characters. You will find lush valleys throughout Provence. These lush valleys are commonly associated with areas with less fertile vegetation. The Alluvial plains are lined along the edges of the major rivers. The Camargue offers an interested landscape that is great for sight seeing as there is often a blurred distinction between the land and the sea. The wildlife of Camargue is similar to that of an African environment.

There are parts of Provence in which the water meets the land and has carved caved beneath the surface of the limestone rocks. You will find that those that are larger and more accessible are often used as show caves and happen to be some of the most famous show caves in all of Europe. Gorges have also been formed as rivers cut deeply into the limestone. If you are interested in seeing gorges you will want to visit the very famous Verdon Gorge.

There are many complicated mountain ranges in the Provence France including those that lay west of the Verdon Gorge. This happens to be the same area in which the folds of the Alpine and Pyrennean meet. The very famous Mont Ventoux is also located in this area. The Mont Ventoux is the highest peak in all of the Province. By traveling further south you will come across some buckled mountain ranges known as the Montagne Ste Victoire. These mountain ranges are extremely popular and were even one of the favorite perspectives of Paul Cezanne.

Provence France follows in suit with the rhythms of the common Mediterranean climate in which seasons tend to change in abrupt succession. You will find that the rapid autumn rains of autumn quickly end the extensive heat of summer. Winters really tend to be mild in Provence France. The region gets the most rainfall in the spring which is around the same time that the plant life explodes into growth.

The Province of Provence France is actually located on the north tip of the Sahara Desert. Being located in this particular location, the Province can have some brutally hot summers. Without the Mediterranean, the Province of Provence France would be completely Saharan. The Mediterranean is an extremely salted inland sea that rarely sees any tides. There are period of time when the Algeria can go without rain for six months. The Provence will go without rain for a period of three months at times.

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