Why Use Avanti Travel

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Why use Avanti Travel?

In today’s world of instant online access to unlimited information on travel options, you might be wondering why it makes sense to plan your vacation with one of our travel professionals.

We take the time to get to know you, understanding your approach to travel, what you like to see and do and in what style. Then we match these factors with your budget, schedule and our insider connections with the best travel providers. Our travel professionals are here for you to talk to, answer your questions, and design a vacation perfect just for you. No web site or cell phone “app” can do it our way.

For Expert Insights It’s our job and our passion to know the world’s greatest destinations inside and out. Our expertise and resources give you an insider’s view when planning your next vacation.

To Save You Time Our extensive knowledge of cruise lines, resorts, airlines and tour operators allows us to cut through the clutter and zero in on the vacation you really want.

To Save You Money We have access to discounted, limited-time offers and exclusive benefits you cannot obtain on your own.

To Personalize Your Vacation Through our global network of trusted travel partners, we can custom-tailor your vacation to perfectly match your individual needs and desires.

To Be There When You Need Us Sometimes the perfectly planned dream vacation hits snags, like a missed plane connection, a front desk clerk who can’t find your hotel reservation or a medical emergency. When you book with us, all you have to do is make one simple phone call and we will handle the rest.

Avanti Travel   530 244 1400        www.avantitravel.com             email info@avantitravel.com

Ask about our vacation payment plans,     honeymoon registry,         group travel planning

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Princess@Sea Information for anyone sailing on Princess in 2015

 

princess@sea

Welcome to Princess@Sea – Princess Cruise Lines  complimentary onboard web service offering quick and convenient access to valuable information directly on your mobile device. Plan your day’s events and activities, review the ship’s itinerary and port guides, browse restaurant menus, even access your stateroom account! Plus, on select ships Princess@Sea Messenger allows you to send text messages to other guests onboard!

Getting started with Princess@Sea is easy. Simply connect to the ship’s WIFI once onboard, open the browser on your computer, tablet, mobile phone or other device, and Princess@Sea will be the default page that appears. It even operates in “Airplane Mode”. No cellular or data charges required!

Princess@Sea is currently available on Caribbean, Coral, Crown, Diamond, Emerald, Golden, Regal, Royal, Ruby, Sapphire & Star Princess. The remaining ships in the fleet are scheduled to launch Princess@Sea by the end of 2015.

Events & Activities

Princess@Sea is the easiest way to discover all the exciting events and activities onboard. Whether you’re seeking live entertainment, a Movie Under the Stars or even a late night dance party, Princess@Sea can help you find the perfect activity to suit your mood.

Princess@Sea Messenger

Get ready to instantly connect! FREE, Princess@Sea Messenger lets you stay in touch and communicate with other guests onboard directly from your mobile device. Whether it’s planning drinks after dinner, or just letting your friends know where you are, Princess@Sea Messenger keeps you in the loop. This feature is currently available on Diamond Princess, Regal Princess, Royal Princess and Star Princess and will be rolled out to the rest of the fleet in the coming months.

Stateroom Account Details

Keep track of your onboard purchases by logging in to your stateroom account on Princess@Sea. To view your stateroom account, you will need to create a user name and password to protect and verify your identity. Once your account is created, simply login

Itinerary & Port Information

Princess@sea places the ship’s itinerary at your fingertips, allowing you to see where you have been, where you are and exactly where you’re going to with just a tap of your device. Plus, learn about what each port has to offer, including outdoor adventures, sightseeing and even shoreside shopping.

Ship Venue Details

Wondering what time the boutiques close? Not sure how to get to The Sanctuary? Or maybe you just want to compare menus without having to visit more than one restaurant. Whether you’re seeking location, hours or menus, Princess@Sea allows you to effortlessly find up-to-date information about our onboard venues.

For more information talk to your Avanti Travel Cruise Counsellor 530 244 1400 or email  info@avantitravel.com

 

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Punta Cana

Punta Cana

One island, two countries. The Dominican Republic and Haiti share the island of Hispaniola, the second largest island in the Caribbean. Unlike it’s sister nation, however, the Dominican Republic has in recent years become one of the Caribbean’s most sought after playgrounds. With hundreds of miles of beaches and reefs, there is no shortage of sand and sun for visitors to the Dominican Republic. Travelers there inevitably compare the sand texture to sugar, but the crystal blue waters are an equally attractive asset. The Dominican Republic’s pristine beaches are slowly becoming the destination of choice for leisure travelers from the United States and Canada looking for real value and extraordinary all-inclusive vacations.

Punta Cana has quickly emerged as the most popular beach destination. Here, many of the island’s top beachfront resorts, amazing oceanfront scenery, and plenty of places for entertainment and activities have sprung into being. Numerous bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and shops dot a landscape where only a few years ago only small villages and hotels catering to a mostly European crowd existed.

The Dominican Republic’s beaches remain unspoiled Caribbean jewels. Almost 800 miles of coastline, and some of the most dazzling sand anywhere ensure vacationers will never have far to go to find great surf and a stretch of soft, white sand to enjoy.

Because the region is, in many respects, still in a very young stage of its development as a destination, vacationers the crowds are all on other islands in the region, giving DR beach goers space to enjoy themselves on the island’s seashores.

This naturally calm, clear and warm water makes the DR an ideal location for water sports and swimming. The beaches are amazingly flat and very wide, easily walked or traveled on horseback, a favorite activity of many visitors. The giant expanse of white sand creates a relaxed feeling of spaciousness, never crowded. These gorgeous beaches are safe to swim year-round, and activities abound with pastimes like scuba diving (Punta Cana has 22 diving sites), snorkeling, windsurfing, kayaking, water biking, sailing, beach volleyball or soccer.

On the easternmost tip of the island, Punta Cana is famous for its spectacular beaches and completely transparent waters, With over twenty miles of white sand and palm trees. Few other destinations in the Caribbean rival the area for its pristine, clean water and open air. Punta Cana’s climate is dry and it rarely rains during the day, the arid flora like palm trees nevertheless flourishing all along the coast.

The influence of the early European crowds remains with a variety of hotel chains catering to a multinational crowd. North Americans have discovered Punta Cana, however, and now luxury all-inclusives with richly featured beach and pool facilities are found along the shore, edging right up to the water. There is a crisp, new feeling to the hotels and resorts here, and endless buffets. Punta Cana is a retreat for pure relaxation and enjoyment.

Punta Cana currently has 12 professional golf courses from designers such as Jack Nicklaus, P.B. Dye, Tom Fazio and Nick Faldo all within a short drive from each other. Several more are in the planning stages and it’s clear that the Dominican Republic is on a headlong rush to become the primary gold destination of the Caribbean.

Best of all, Punta Cana remains a real value. Prices here can range hundreds of dollars less than better known, Caribbean destinations. So if it’s value you seek, sugary white sand and swaying lines of coconut palms, Punta Cana should be on your short list of destinations to get to know.

Contact Avanti Travel Inc and start planning your vacation.

530 244 1400                  http://www.avantitravel.com

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Essential travel items to pack in your suitcase

Essential Travel Items

 

I travel frequently and I am always asked about the essential items I pack so here are just a few

Items that I consider essential.portable bch

Portable battery charger is a must have to charge on the go for  phones, kindle I Pad etc.It is especially useful on those long flights when you are reading a book, nothing is more annoying than a dead battery.

bag2

Cross Body Purse for the ladies, I consider this an essential part of my luggage, it is useful to be able to be hands free but still keep all the travel essentials close like passports, wallets, travel documents and phone. It is really useful to have a purse like this if you are travelling in crowdedareas, and especially essential on any European vacation.

Mini Flashlight It never hurts to be prepared I recently used my mini flashlight after a hotel lostall its power for several hours, it was especially useful as I had to navigate the emergency exitstairways. Mine is always in my travel bag ready to go.           packingcubes

Packing Cubes These are more for use on longer trips they keep all your clothes neat andtidy and can be unpacked and repacked with ease. The smaller ones are great for all those electric cords, chargers etc.

Ziploc Bags zip locks are one of my travel essentials I always have several sizes in my suitcase and hand luggage, you never know when you may need to pack a wet swimsuit or some messy sandals! I also use the smaller ones for jewelry packing my earrings in separate bags so they do not get lost along the way and I do not end up with 3 unmatched earrings.

Dryer Sheets I put dryer sheets between my luggage so they serve a double duty, one myclothes smell nice and two they are useful if I have to do laundry along the way.

Street Maps If you are visiting any major city I recommend you either download street maps orpurchase a map on arrival they will save you a lot of time when you are looking to find thatattraction or shopping area. Google maps is great of course but if wifi is not available then the old fashioned street map is the way to go.

First Aid Kit I have a small one I purchased and then added a few extra band aids antisepticcream and some other miscellaneous items, I just leave it in the bottom of my suitcase

Small packable bag I have a small bag that packs down into 4 inch square purse, thisis so useful I cannot tell you how many times I have used it for shopping, picking up magazinesor snacks in the airport or carrying extra shoes I have used it on almost every trip I have beenon and now I carry an extra one in my suitcase.If you have any questions on packing essentials, luggage or anything you would like to add tothis list please contact me

janette@avantitravel.com http://www.avantitravel.com 530 244 1400

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Dive Vacations

Dive Vacations

Scuba diving offers travelers seeking an active vacation the opportunity to view parts of our world seen by very few. Divers are part of an exclusive club, sharing experiences normally reserved for marine life. Like few other activities, diving provides an unparalleled reason to travel and one that will leave you searching for your next marine adventure. If the idea of sharing your holiday with angel fish, eels and sharks, watching turtles gliding along the sea bed and exploring shipwrecks appeals to you, read on and learn the basics of dive travel planning.

If you already are an experienced diver, you know the joy of seeing a rare underwater species or one that you have never seen before. Add to that experience the thrill of traveling to a new, perhaps exotic, destination to explore, and you have a real adventure at hand. Setting off on a dive vacation in a distant land may seem daunting, but with the help of your travel agent – who can take care of the planning – diving will add an entirely new dimension to your adventures. If you are new to diving, traveling with a tour company that provides expert guidance is one of the best possible introductions.

A successful dive trip relies on choosing your destination and travel dates wisely, a good travel consultant to assist with the logistics, a little luck, and a lot of coordinated planning. If you currently dive, it’s likely that you have already traveled at some point to pursue your hobby. If you are new to diving, or if this is your first diving holiday, then you may want to consider taking a “learn to dive” holiday offered at many resort locations worldwide. PADI is a certification association for divers and a worldwide source of diving knowledge, advice and instructors. Dive resorts most often require PADI certification to rent equipment to divers or to provide refills for air tanks. PADI offers training through YMCAs and dive supply shops. Basic training can be done in a swimming pool with final certification taking place in “open water”. A PADI open water certificate can be gained anywhere from 4 days to 6 weeks, depending on your training time and ability, and you can comfortably go on holiday to learn about and experience diving in the ocean by the end of a week. You’ll need to learn a lot of the theory that goes with this qualification, which means you should be prepared to do some homework during your holiday – but it’s time well spent.

As you begin planning, have a general idea of the amount of time you want to spend diving and the time you want to enjoy other activities. Also prepare your budget for the trip, weighing diving costs against transportation, lodging, food, and entertainment. When you evaluate the type of experience you’d like to have, ask yourself if there are species of marine life you particularly want to see, or if there’s a part of the world you’ve always wanted to visit? Do you want a “live aboard” experience, or are you looking for a resort – and diving is a secondary activity? The more consideration you give these issues, the way.more efficient the planning process will be, the more you’ll enjoy your vacation, and the quicker you will be on your

Your first stop should be a travel agent at Avanti Travel Inc experienced with tour operators offering dive trips and dive destinations. Because of the logistics of a diving trip and your investment in both time and money, it is important to have a practiced set of eyes watching out for you. Your travel consultant will know which destinations and tour operators are appropriate (and which to avoid) and can assist in pulling together less obvious components of the trip, often at substantial discounts.

If you are an experienced diver, then the world literally is your playground. Most divers have a long list of where they want to go and wrecks and marine life they want to see. Naturally, your budget will be a key factor when you finally decide where to go. Be sure to let your travel agent know any special preferences or requests at the first opportunity, so every possible detail is taken into account early in the planning process. In South America and the Caribbean, top destinations are Belize, the Cayman Islands, Turks and Caicos and Mexico. In Europe, Italy, Malta and its famous Blue Lagoon, Spain, and Croatia are all popular. The Red Sea is a world famous diving destination that’s accessible from Saudi Arabia, Eritrea, Sudan, Jordan, Egypt and Israel. South Africa offers cage diving to see Great White Sharks, and opportunities are endless in Asia and Australasia. Not to be missed are Truk Lagoon in Micronesia, and of course – the Great Barrier Reef. Very few localities require special dive permits; in most cases, a local PADI dive center can obtain a permit in short order. However, in some countries, notably in the Middle East, permit acquisition can take more than a week, so plan well in advance.

The weather at your destination will greatly affect your dive experience. And unfortunately, when traveling great distances, it is not easy to cancel at the last minute without losing some or all of your deposits. Keep your eye on the weather and be careful about booking travel during times of the year, for example hurricane season in the Caribbean, when you’ll have an above-average chance of trip disruption. Ask your travel consultant to check on the cancellation policies available from the tour operator or resort and if travel insurance is available for severe weather events.

As mentioned, a key consideration for any dive vacation is how much time you want to devote to diving. Some resorts offer diving opportunities as one of many activities for visitors, and only one afternoon of an entire week might be devoted to diving. Other destinations, however, center all activities around a full diving schedule, and travelers find themselves below the surface for hours each day – then usually relaxing at night with a big meal and a cold drink.

If you are going with a group, early in your planning, determine how much diving each traveler wants to do so you can choose the best location that offers interesting and alternative activities. Remember, too, that diving is an active sport with a small, manageable risk element. If the skill levels in your group vary greatly, your destination and tour operator should take those differences into account; if this is the case, you might not be able to dive together, unless the more experienced divers chose to do easier dives. Many dive centers will offer a range of dives allowing you to meet up with others in your group between dives. If you plan to travel with children, make sure that your travel consultant checks with the destination or tour operator about the appropriateness of the trip and alternative care, if needed.

You will most likely have a range of likely accommodation options, from budget to deluxe hotels. There are also “live aboard” options where you sleep on a boat and dive from the boat during the trip; if you go this route, you are likely to sleep in a twin bed cabin with limited space. However, if you want to maximize your diving opportunities, a live-a-board might be your best option. Imagine diving in the morning, enjoying lunch in the sun, diving after lunch and then reflecting on the day and making plans for tomorrow as you cruise to your next spot, watching the sun go down. These arrangements typically include high-quality meals and air for two dives per day in the package price. A couple of days on dry land at each end of your trip will give you a chance to enjoy life above the water as well.

While almost anyone can dive, make sure you are prepared for the physical demands of the trip and that the dive area is within your skill level. Some dives involve strong currents or extreme depths, so knowing what’s in store and getting a few hours of preliminary dive time at comparable depth and terrain will make your time on vacation more productive and enjoyable.

In addition to considering physical demands of a dive vacation, be aware of any indigenous diseases in your chosen destination, such as malaria or yellow fever, and protect yourself against them. As early as possible in the planning stage, consult a physician to determine what shots and other precautions you need prior to travel. Importantly, also consult your physician and dive masters about your flight schedule and appropriate wait periods before your first airline flight and after your last dive prior to flying to prevent problems with nitrogen build-up in your blood from the compressed air in your dive tanks.

Your tour operator no doubt will provide a complete list of recommended clothing and gear. In general, however, it is a good idea to pack as lightly as possible to ensure you can carry all of the equipment you need with you. Most airlines charge for excess baggage, and diving equipment tends to be heavy. Most airlines will carry empty cylinders, but consider renting your cylinders and weights at your destination to save baggage costs. Remember that diving knives must be packed, not carried on. Some localities do not permit spear fishing equipment, so check prior to your trip. If you do travel with your cylinder, you will have to remove the pressure valve during travel. Many destinations will have rentals of all equipment available, so just confirm the availability during your planning stages. You will almost certainly want to pack your own mask and flippers as these will need to fit perfectly. And remember to bring along your certification card, which is required by most dive locations, in addition to a logbook, sunscreen, and any necessary international travel documentation, such as your passport and visas. Prescription drugs should be carried with you, not checked. Work with your travel consultant to check in advance that your airline will be able to take everything you want to carry with you.

You may be asking, is dive travel safe? It is important to remember that diving in new surroundings will always entail a greater degree of risk. So play by the rules, listen to your tour operator and dive master, and stay within the limits of your skill level. The basics of safe diving apply in every instance, no matter where you are. Use the buddy system, be smart about your dives and take the same reasonable precautions you would in any unfamiliar dive territory. Drinking and diving? Allow adequate detox time and be responsible. Finally, remember standard precautions about airline travel post-dive.

The costs associated with your dive trip will be your transportation to the destination, your transportation at the destination and to the dive sites, your accommodations, your food, any dive master services and any additional activities. Tipping should also be considered as an additional expense. Many tour operators cover all, or some large portion, of these items in the cost of their tour. Work with your travel consultant to determine exactly what is included and what’s extra to avoid last-minute surprises.

Dive travel is almost more than a hobby, it can be a way of life. Come on in, the water’s fine. Contact Avanti Travel Inc and start planning your dive vacation!

cal 530 244 1400                            www.avantitravel.com                email info@avantitravel.com

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Castle Visits and Stays

 

Castle Visits and Stays

 

Who has not been captivated by tales of knights and dragons, of medieval feuds, battles and betrayals? Serving as the backdrop for each of these stories is a castle. Visiting a castle can provide a playground for the imagination, allowing the mind to revel in legend and lore. Walking through grand halls past suits of armor, torches and tapestries, one cannot fathom so many stories embedded in stone. More than a getaway from the stresses of everyday life, castles have the ability to transport visitors to another time.

Castles come in all states of repair. Many are still occupied and many more hang on in some state of ruin. Each has its own personality, calling out to some hidden part of our curiosity about times shrouded in mist. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, the spirits of those who occupied the halls of Europe’s castles beckon to us, calling us by name.

The United Kingdom and Ireland are the traditional areas for castle stays and tours. Britain alone has several thousand castles, most constructed in the 11th through 15th centuries. Austria, Spain, Portugal, Germany and France likewise have many amazing properties scattered throughout their many provinces and districts offering both tours and hotel like accommodations.

Central Europe is a quickly growing castle market with highly competitive pricing. In particular, Hungary offers several properties constructed during the Baroque and Rococo periods, as does the Czech Republic and its sister state of Slovenia. If you have a particular destination in mind, ask us to investigate the possibility of castle tours and vacations as an alternative to more traditional lodging options!

Castle vacations offer visitors the opportunity to indulge in a tranquil and intriguing escape, not to mention unforgettable scenery. In general, castle vacations fall into two categories: tours and stays. Both types are recommended for travelers of all ages who have an appreciation for history, culture and beauty. But, a bit of planning is in order to make your castle experience the adventure it should be.

Avanti Travel Consultants

can help you navigate the maze of castles. There are a number of important considerations, including the types of castle, the choice of rooms inside of the castles, the general condition of the properties and the number of guests permitted. Your travel consultant will inquire with regard to the standards of the tour company and how the company chooses the castles with which it works. For example, far too many tour companies include manor houses in their definition of “castles”, risking the disappointment of their guests. Your travel consultant will make sure that you obtain a match much closer to your preferences and will provide you with pictures of various properties along with a history to ensure that you will be in a castle of the period and age of your preference.

To better ensure an enjoyable stay and a high standard of quality, your travel consultant will choose a tour operator that that specializes in castle stays or at least visits its featured castles regularly. Some tour operators specialize geographically, while others offer castles in a variety of countries. Tour operators can give you the price of a stay, the size of the castle and its grounds, and the number of guests it can accommodate. They can be particularly helpful in arranging a stay if the castle booking system is not computerized, and most are not.

Tours of castles are rewarding trips into the past. Most tours will stay at each castle for at least a few hours, exploring the halls, stairways and grounds. Of course, the time allotted depends on the number of castles visited that day, the traveling time between them, and the castle’s visitation hours. To allow a longer visit your tour operator may try to arrange hotel accommodation nearby, but this is not always feasible in rural areas. Because of the large scale of many properties and their grounds, it is best not to try to squeeze too much viewing into too short a time period. If you time constraints are limited, choose quality over quantity and limit your tours to a few, select properties.

In terms of transportation, remember to be flexible. Though the tour will likely have a timetable, travel delays are common in the countryside. As a passenger, it is best to relax and savor the majestic views.

Remember that the better physical shape you are in for castle exploration, the more enjoyable your experience will be, especially when climbing to the top of a tower or getting lost in a garden labyrinth. Because of their age, castles generally cannot offer superior accommodation to disabled guests. Uneven floors, narrow passages and winding staircases can present particular hindrances. For these reasons, a castle tour that explores castle interiors may not be realistic for persons with certain disabilities. If you or a companion has a disability that might hinder full enjoyment of a property, let your travel consultant know well in advance. There are some destinations that boast ground floor bedrooms and restaurants, disabled parking and wheelchairs for hire. Some castles have been converted to offer ramps (permanent and removable) and bathrooms with handrails.

Fortunately for we commoners, the high cost of maintaining these vast and elaborate residences has driven many castle owners to extend accommodations to the public. Many castles have been restored, leaving the medieval décor in tact while adding modern amenities. Many castles and so-called “castle hotels” offer high-end and even luxurious stays for one night or for weeks on end.

It is possible to obtain exclusive use of a castle property with enough advance notices. “Exclusive use” of a property indicates that you and your party will be the only guests in the castle during your visit, essentially a charter of the entire property. There likely will be minimum stay requirements and charges for such usage, as well as some possible minimal usage of dining and banquet facilities.

So called “self catering” castle stays are those where the property is hired on an “accommodation only” basis. Meals and other services are not a part of the package price, although guests are sometimes provided use of kitchen facilities.

Room sizes for sleeping within castles vary, but in general are characterized by the familiar “double/twin/single/suite” nomenclature. Generally speaking, the better grades of rooms are typically larger with better furnishings and views. Likewise the styling of the bedrooms and beds will vary not only from castle to castle but from room to room. Not every room will have four poster beds and lush tapestries. If you have particular tastes and preferences, make sure to make them clear to your travel consultant well in advance of booking!

Dining is often a highlight of a castle stay. In some instances, not only will you have the opportunity to dine as the royals do, but you may be sitting next to one. Dinner can be an occasion for all guests to dine with the residing duke or lord. If this is the case, be sure to ask your tour operator about dress code. Some tours and stays include all meals while others include only one meal. Others may offer food on an a-la-carte basis. Determine the meal plans offered by the properties in which you are interested and make sure to include the cost of the meals in your final budget calculations.

Many castles have a variety of on site activities which may include horseback riding, fishing, falconry, trekking, cycling and croquet. Some castles even have tennis courts and putting courses. Check to see if advance reservations for these activities are needed. For visiting nearby towns, the castle’s staff may provide car hire. A great many guests hold their weddings at castles. Because this is an area of frequent inquiry, many tour operators have special packages available for wedding parties and ceremonies.

In some instances, castle property management has developed very elaborate tours and even role-playing games or contests. Many castles have wonderful gardens, some of historical significance. Castle properties sometimes include garden mazes on their grounds. The mazes typically consist of high hedges formed into a walking path that turns in upon itself with many puzzle-like paths and circuits. Most mazes are constructed of hedges, but others are constructed of bricks, logs, concrete and other materials.

Many castles have dress codes for various times of the day or particular activities, while others do not. The dress code varies from castle to castle, but most have relaxed standards for daytime wear with slightly more formal requirements at dinner. Be sure to check in advance to ensure your comfort and conformity with any requirements.

Often situated in the lush countryside, castles are not always easily accessible by public transportation. Consequently, hiring a car is often a good option, and can be arranged by your travel consultant. Car access also enables you to visit nearby towns and attractions. Remember to map out your journey beforehand and be prepared for slow and bumpy country roads.

As many castles have narrow staircases and elevators are few, smaller luggage is advisable. If you are going on a castle tour, there may be an extra charge for bringing additional luggage. You will also want to find out if your destination offers log fires or central heating, and pack according to your destination and season. As usual, pack only what you need. You do not really want to carry more that you must, and there will almost always be more than ample opportunity for shopping along the way!

What child wouldn’t jump at the chance to live like a prince or princess, to slay imaginary dragons on the castle grounds, or let down fantastical hair from an actual tower? Castles indulge children’s fantasies as well as those of adults. Though not all castles are child-friendly, many will accommodate young ones. Your tour operator should be able to tell you which sites have designated family rooms, interconnecting rooms and/or rollaway beds. Certain castles also provide play areas, children’s menus and early dining hours. Those properties that are chid friendy vary with the minimal acceptable age, so be sure to check if your party includes persons less than 18 years of age. As previously noted, make sure that the properties you visit will accommodate any physical limitations of members of your party.

The cost of a tour or a castle stay varies widely with the country in which the property in located and the special amenities each property offers. As your travel consultant develops your itinerary, make sure to provide your optimal budget to ensure the final costs are in line with your expectations. Accommodations and castle entry fees are usually included in the price of the tour; airline tickets are not. Your travel agent can find the best possible air values given your destination and season of travel. Many tour packages include breakfast and dinner in the itinerary. In general, you will need money to pay for lunches, snacks, drinks and of course, shopping.

When pricing your stay, remember to take into consideration any Value Added Tax (VAT) levied by many countries in Europe and elsewhere. Because VAT is often as high as 20% of the cost of an accommodation or good purchased, the amount is often not insignificant! Many travelers assume that VAT is refundable. However, this is typically not the case for services such as transportation, accommodation, food, gas or any other goods or services consumed within the country itself. Ensure that the price you are quoted includes all taxes and other fees.

Castles are the stuff of dreams. Contact Avanti Travel Inc and fulfill yours today! 530 244 1400 http://www.avantitravel.com

 

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Feeling Adventurous in Alaska?

Featured image

Feeling adventurous? Then Alaska is the place for you. From guided tours, hiking on an ice glacier, going on a dog sled ride, riding in an airplane, rafting, kayaking, even a jet boat ride, your options in the great outdoors and beyond are endless. Even safari rides are available, riding in a sponsored vehicle and getting up-close-and-personal with the wildlife and other characters of nature.
•Want to explore the outdoors, but aren’t quite so brave? Then a cruise is the perfect choice. The sighting of whales, seals, sea lions, orcas, sea otters, mountain goats, even brown and black bears from the safety and protection of a ship are common, letting you come within enough distance to appreciate, but not disturb, them. Another great option for a sea-faring explorer is a riverboat ride on a grand sternwheeler. Dating back to the early days of exploration, sternwheelers are a great way to take a trip back in history while still enjoying all of the modern amenities.
•Experiencing the culture and entertainment firsthand is what will really set your trip to Alaska apart. Right off the screens of The History or National Geographic Channel, visitors can immerse themselves within the native environment via totem carving, dancing, blanket tossing, music, crafts, festivals, museums and heritage centers. Taking influence from not only the local population but also from Russia, your to-do list will grow longer and longer the more you discover.
•One of the most relaxing pastimes, Alaska’s fly-fishing, saltwater fishing, freshwater fishing and even ice fishing is known worldwide as being some of the best. From beginner to professional, every level of experience is catered to and met with just about any accommodation possible.
•Getting around in Alaska is an adventure within itself — any mode of transportation you take will lead you on an once-in-a-lifetime journey. Whether you choose to go by boat, car, motor coach, plane or by train, each option will leave you with stories to tell.

Contact Avanti Travel Inc and start planning your Alaska vacation. 530 244 1400    www.avantitravel.com

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Experience the ultimate in an all-inclusive resort

When I stepped inside the Le Blanc Spa and Resort, I knew this was not like any other all-inclusive resort in Cancun. The doorman met us with refreshing cool towels and our luggage was whisked away, we entered into a sparkling modern interior and was checked in at a private desk and met by our Butler, who proceeded to escort us to our room.

The room was modern and immaculate with upscale amenities. A mini fridge stocked with juices soda and candy as well as a full cabinet of liquors and this is all included no room service charges or exorbitant mini bar bill at the end of the stay. We had more than enough space including a small desk area and a very extensive bathroom that included a jacuzzi tub, and a larger than normal shower with several wall jets. The one very surprising amenity I have not seen in a hotel before, a tv in the bathroom mirror that can be viewed while in the jacuzzi. Also some of my favorite bathroom amenities Bulgari and l’octanne. A pillow menu is included with an array of choices and also an in room menu of aromatherapy that can be ordered from the butler

The resort sits on the sparkling Caribbean Sea, with only 260 rooms and only 15 minutes to the hustle and bustle of Cancun the resort has astonishing private beaches that become the ultimate sanctuary for rest relaxation and pampering by the beach concierge who seems to anticipate the guests needs either by moving the sun umbrella to give you more shade, to deliver an ice bucket with bottled water or just serving fruit popsicle to your private cabana.

With three incredible pools two of which are infinity pools the choice is beach or poolside relaxing?

The Le Blanc world-class spa is the ultimate space for total well-being, featuring some of the finest spa products with nineteen treatment rooms as well as other specialty rooms such as the Vichy rooms and couples rooms this spa will rejuvenate the mind-body and soul.

Dinning at Le Blanc can only be summed up as world-class with each of the four restaurants serving up sumptuous cuisine, specialty dinning includes, french, asian and Italian as well as the more laid back less formal dinning either by the pool or room service. several bars are around the resort including the evening gathering place by the reception area that also looks out on the pools and beach, with low-key evening entertainment and a bar menu featuring some amazing martinis this is a popular evening meeting place.

This five-star resort lives up to its award and can only be summed up as a serene luxurious retreat with sophisticated style, personal service and everything you could ever want for a relaxing carefree vacation where every little detail is taken care of far away from the hustle bustle of the city and everyday life. I have to say this as been my most favorite all-inclusive resort I have ever visited and I will be returning many more times

If you need further information please email janette@avantitravel

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Quick Getaway or a long Weekend in Tucson Arizona

Quick Getaway, long weekend in Tucsonhttp://

I recently had the pleasure of staying at the Westin La Paloma Resort and Spa in Tucson Arizona, only a 30 minute ride from the airport, this luxurious property is nestled in the foothills of the  Santa Catalina Mountains. The hotel was renovated in 2013, the rooms are oversized and well appointed and of course have the famous heavenly beds. All rooms have seating areas, balconies and work spaces.Wi fi is available in all rooms and room service is available 24 hours a days.

Accommodations are in 27 buildings that are arranged in a village setting, golf carts are used by the bell staff to transport guests around

The larger than normal lobby has a look of a European Palace with modern comfy furnishings and soaring windows. The reception area is large and the friendly reception staff are extremely courteous and helpful as are all the staff at the resort.Meeting facilities can hold up to 2,100 people l with 42,000 square feet of meeting space and 27 meeting rooms this makes for an ideal corporate venue

On the outside a large lagoon style pool with waterfalls is very welcoming it features a waterslide and swim up bar, two other pools are also close one just for children and the other being an adults only pool. Joining the lineup of amenities ten lighted tennis courts, three whirlpools, volleyball, racquetball, bicycle rentals and supervised children’s activities. A health room and weight room are also available to guests.

A  27 hole Jack Nickalaus signature Golf course is located at the property, this course has a challenging layout with amazing desert views as a backdrop

Also located on the edge of the resort the Red Door Spa where guests can be pampered with a wide range of treatments

The hotel as many other facilities such as atms, starbucks, business center, laundry and dry cleaning and numerous bars and restaurants, A popular restaurant in the hotel, Azuls open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and also serves an excellent Sunday Brunch. Just outside the main front doors Poppy Kitchen has recently opened this is a very popular it is recommended to have a reservation.

Tucson and the surrounding areas have a lot to offer one of the main must do attractions is the Pima Air Space Museum, it is open daily, they have over 300 restored aircrafts ranging from the Wright Brothers plane to the SR-71 Blackbird. Tours are lead by knowledgeable museum personnel  check the web site out at  www.pimaair.org  for more details

 

With so much to see and do in Tucson it is recommended to check out the Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau for everything tht is happening www.visittucson.org

For further information call your Travel Consultants at 530 244 1400

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River Cruising a better way to discover Europe

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                                                                                        River Cruising a better way to discover Europe,

River Cruising, no better way to discover Europe than on a river cruise, the magnificent waterways take you to the heart of Europe’s cities, with the ever changing unforgettable scenery, stopping in towns steeped in history and culture, whether you choose to cruise the Rhine, Danube, Seine, Yangtze, Portugal’s  Duro or Russia’s Volga the pace of river cruising allows you to enjoy the scenery customs and cuisine of the countries along your journey.

River cruising is very different from the large ocean going ships, many cruise travelers are turning to river cruising as an alternative so river cruising is becoming very popular.  Many river ships  are newer vessels, with a focus on amenities, comfort and intimate cruising. Most  lines offer gourmet dining focusing on the local cuisine with local beers and wines offered at mealtimes. Another great addition is included excursions at each stop.

With the popularity of this new way of cruising many lines are sold out early so it is important to book early for many reasons, first to take advantage of the many early booking discounts and air credits that may be available and also to pick out the best cabin available. Groups should always book well in advance.

Seek out an agent that is experienced in river cruises as they will help you find the best dates and rates. Here at Avanti Travel we have several River Cruise specialists that will be able to plan your complete vacation. we can customize your air add extra hotel nights and sightseeing . Our expert vacation planners can help you save time and money

Avanti Travel  your travelled travel agents

530 244 1400   email us at            info@avantitravel.com

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