Saturday, 18 August 2012

Luxury Paris Day Trip From London

Take a romantic day trip to Paris on the Eurostar and see the sights including Notre Dame, Champs Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe. Enjoy a Champagne lunch at the Eiffel Tower, ending with a leisurely cruise along the River Seine.

You will reach St Pancras station where you will meet your guide who will escort you for the entire day. Travelling at speeds up to 186mph you will be in Paris in just 2 hours 15 minutes.

Upon arrival in Paris, you will enjoy a panoramic tour of the city taking in most the major sites including Notre Dame, Champs Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe before arriving at the Eiffel Tower.

What better way to enjoy lunch than on the Eiffel Tower itself, one of the world's most famous monuments. Your fast entry ticket means you will get priority access and your reserved seats in the 58 tour Eiffel restaurant boast fabulous views across the city. Sit back and enjoy a glass of Champagne followed by a fabulous meal while soaking up the atmosphere of arguably the world's most beautiful and romantic city.

In the afternoon, take a one hour cruise on the River Seine with spectacular views of the Notre Dame. After your cruise you can explore the Louvre independently (additional cost) and see the world famous Mona Lisa.

In the early evening you will head back to Gard du Nord for your return journey to London St Pancras International station.

Local Operator Information
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When is the Best Time to Visit Paris?

When planning a trip to Paris, one of your most pressing questions is likely to be "when is the best time to go?" If you're set to visit Paris for the first time, you may be persuaded that the much-lauded "Paris in the springtime" is the obvious choice-- but depending on your budget, tolerance for large crowds, and centers of interest, another time of year may suit you better.

Similarly, if you've been to Paris before, you may wonder whether a fall or winter visit will be worthwhile, given rumors of cold, bitter conditions and gloomy locals. The reality, though, is far more nuanced-- the winter holiday season in Paris offers plenty of light and celebration, and in the fall, events like the Montmartre Wine Harvest bring the city to life in a memorable way.

As a resident of the city of light, my own take is that every season here has its charms and pitfalls-- as anywhere else! Use this guide to help make an informed decision about when to plan your Parisian sojourn. Browse the resources below to navigate to detailed guides on each season.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Travel to Atlanta on a Budget

This is not really a story about what to see and do in Atlanta. It is an attempt at getting you around this bustling city without destroying your budget. As with most heavily visited cities, Atlanta offers plenty of easy ways to pay top dollar for things that won't really enhance your experience. Get a PopOut Street Map of Atlanta.

When to Visit:

Many of Atlanta's visitors come here to make flight connections or attend business meetings. But if you have a choice, almost any season beyond the very hot, humid summer is a pleasant time to visit. Winters tend to be mild, but they also bring the occasional paralyzing ice storm. Autumn features festival time to the north in the Georgia mountains. Getting Here:

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is the world's busiest passenger airport. It is located 10 miles SW of downtown. It can be an expensive ride into the city, so look for the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) trains that stop at the west entrance to the terminal complex. MARTA trains arrive and depart from the airport every eight minutes. The trip downtown takes 15 minutes. By car, I-75 is the north-south route that runs from Detroit to Miami. I-85 takes a diagonal route NE to SW. I-20 runs E-W. The freeway that circles Atlanta is I-285, commonly called "The Perimeter" by locals. Getting Around:

Airport trains make ground transportation cheaper here. MARTA offers a number of discount programs, including those for visitors, college students and seniors or disabled riders. Visitors can buy a one-day, unlimited pass for $8; if you'll be here for four days, the price falls to about $3/day. Where to Stay:

Finding an affordable hotel room in Atlanta isn't difficult unless there is a major event in town. Major chains such as Sheraton and Marriott offer business travelers the needed amenities at multiple locations (Marriott alone has 70 properties in greater Atlanta). There are less expensive alternatives for those who don't have business needs. Priceline can turn up some good deals. I recently paid $58/night on a Priceline bid to stay in a Midtown business-class hotel where rack rates were running nearly $200/night. Four-star hotel for under $150/night: Emory Inn near the Emory University School of Nursing. Where to Eat:

The Varsity bills itself as the world's largest Drive-In restaurant (in business since 1928). It's not a health food place, but it is an Atlanta experience. The chili-cheese dogs and orange sodas are the meal of choice for most visitors. More upscale meals can be found in the Buckhead section of Atlanta, just a few miles north of Midtown on Peachtree. Here, trendy restaurants open and close, while a few stalwarts continue. For a look at the prices and cuisines offered, consult, and don't miss their budget dining recommendations. Educational Atlanta:

Atlanta is very much a "college town," with a host of renowned campuses in the area. These can be the source of inexpensive and top-quality events, museums and entertainment. Atlanta University Center Consortium in the West End Historic District is home to a number of historically Black colleges that offer many opportunities throughout the year. In the midtown area (north of downtown) lies Georgia Tech, with its sprawling campus and ACC sports offerings. Emory University is just east of the downtown area. In all of these areas, it's possible to find cheap meals. Look for the places that cater to students and enjoy. Sports of all Sorts:

Atlantans love their Braves baseball, Falcons football and Hawks basketball. The University of Georgia (in Athens, about 70 miles to the east) offers Southeastern Conference sports, and is a strong rival for Atlanta's Georgia Tech, which plays in the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Atlanta Motor Speedway south of Atlanta near Hampton, Ga. hosts two Winston Cup races each year and many other smaller events. Discount outlets such as StubHub are possible sources for tickets. More Atlanta Tips:

Price those Trans-Continental flights from Atlanta carefully. Many travelers prefer departing the U.S. from Atlanta rather than New York. But be warned: Trans-Atlantic fares from New York are usually less expensive.

Spend some time on Auburn Avenue. Along this avenue, you will find the Ebenezer Baptist Church, the birth home of Dr. Martin Luther King, and The King Center, where visitors experience the life and teachings of the civil rights leader. For this powerful experience, you pay no admission fee, but donations are accepted.

Day Trip #1: Chattanooga. Less than two hours north of Atlanta lies Chattanooga, the home of Tennessee Aquarium and its IMAX theatre and a host of low-cost nearby attractions such as the famous Appalachian Trail and a number of Civil War sites.

Day Trip #2: North Georgia Mountains. Just a few hours from Atlanta are some of the most picturesque vistas in the eastern United States. Great hiking, camping and eating establishments can be found in the mountains. Check out the area's fine system of State Parks.

Visit the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia. This museum is relatively new on the Atlanta scene, but displays a wide variety of art and charges just $3 admission for adults, and $1 for children. Discounts for Six Flags Over Georgia Print tickets or passes for the park before you leave home and save money.

Find out what's happening at Piedmont Park. This is among the nation's largest urban parks, and it hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

Consult About's excellent Atlanta site For the latest information on happenings, clubs, dining and hotel options and much more, take a look at the Atlanta for Tourists and Residents site. Not all the information is budget-oriented, but you'll be able to plan your trip quickly with the latest information. That planning in itself is a money-saving task.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Disneyland Dream Parade

The main Disneyland Parade currently running is 'Disney's Once Upon a Dream Parade', taking place each day at 4pm. There is also a smaller one, a train with a number of Disney Characters doing the round of the park several times a day. The 'Once Upon a Dream Parade' though is definitely the highlight, and worth seeing a couple of times.

Keep in mind that it will get very crowded. On the positive side, this is also the time to go exploring the park once you've seen the parade as queues at attractions dwindle to a Disneyland minimum (read: you'll still queue for 30-40 minutes at the more popular ones).

The Parade

Float 1: Dreams of Imagination - featuring a giant sun-shaped hot air balloon, as well as Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, Pluto and Chip 'n Dale

Float 2: Dreams of Laughter & Fun - the first one dedicated to feature film cartoons, this is a mixture of Pinocchio and Alice in Wonderland. Walking in front of the float are playing cards, White Rabbit, and the Mad Hatter. Decorations include supersized Alice in the White Rabbit's house, Jiminy Cricket, the Cheshire Cat, etc.

Float 3: Dreams of Friendship - this one is Winnie the Pooh/Toy Story. Little Green Soldiers, Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Jessie, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, Hamm, Slinky Dog are on the Toy Story side, while Winnie, Tigger, Piglet and Eyeore are on the Winnie the Pooh side.

Float 4: Dreams of Fantasy - Mary Poppins/Peter Pan. Captain Hook, Mr. Smee, Wendy and Peter Pan are all there, as are Bert and Mary Poppins herself.

Float 5: Dreams of Power - the villains float (usually accompanied by a strong smell of sulphur!). Chernabog, the Jafar cobra, Wicked Queen from Snow White, Hades and Ursula are featured.

Float 6: Dreams of Adventure - Lion King/Jugle Book. Featuring an old tree depicting a number of smaller characters, the big attractions are Simba, Rafiki and of courseTimon & Pumbaa. Various animals from those 2 films are visible in the tree's branches, including the snake Kaa. Also King Louie's and Baloo dancing.

Floats 7-8: Dreams of Romance - the kids favourite, princes and princesses floats. Ariel and Prince Eric as well as Aladdin and Jasmine are on the first one, with Snow White, Cinderella, Princess Aurora, and Belle with respective grooms on the second. The couples come down from the floats to dance along the route.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

How to make the best of your stay in Maldives

Maldives is a chain of 20 atolls consisting 1190 islands, each surrounded by a unique coral reef and lagoons with different shades of blue. These coral reefs are enriched with brightly colored fishes and othermarine life that is sure to leave you speechless. Apart from the wonderful undisturbed marine life, tourists chose Maldives as their dream holiday destination because of its magnificent white sandy beaches and the tropical environment.

One can have full certainty that he will not run out of activities to do, during his stay in Maldives. Cruising,diving and snorkeling, surfing, variety of water sports and enjoying the world-class spas are among the many other that will make your stay here unforgettable.

If you are in search for something truly different to do during your holiday then, Maldives provide that as well. If you want to spend the whole of your vacation in the sea, surrounded by nothing but clear blue water filled with never before seen under water life then you should try cruising. A holiday on a cruise boat in the Maldives is often said to be the best way to truly experience the unique magnificence and harmony of this tropical paradise. Holidaying on a cruise boat gives you the opportunity to sample various dive sites and see different island and it also allows you to appreciate the unique beauty of different resorts. These vessels are fully equipped with diving equipment with standard accommodation and facilities, but some offers deluxe accommodation with modern conveniences.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Celebrate Birthdays at the Disneyland Resort

Order a Disneyland Resort Personal-Size Party Cake

Celebrate your birthday with a meal at a full-service restaurant in Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure Park or the Disneyland Resort Hotels, and add to the fun with a Disney Princess Jewelry Box or Disney Pirate Treasure Chest! Each comes with a special surprise and an individual cake! The Princess Jewelry Box and the Disney Pirate Treasure Chest are available at full-service restaurants, Character dining locations, and through Disney Hotel Room Service.

Price: $15 each, plus tax.

Celebrate a "My Disneyland Birthday Party" with Mickey and Minnie!

Searching for a magical way to enjoy your big day? Make plans for a "My Disneyland Birthday Party" at Disneyland Park's Plaza Inn! Join your host, Pat E. Cake, for a happy, fun-filled celebration featuring music, merriment, laughter and cake decorating — with a special appearance by Mickey and Minnie Mouse. All Guests receive a party hat, souvenir sipper cup, mini birthday cake, icing and cake toppings.

Seating daily. Reservations can be made in person at Plaza Inn, City Hall and at Guest Relations information kiosks, or by phone when you call the Disney Dine Line at (714) 781-DINE or (714) 781-3463.

Price: $16.99 per person*

Thinks to note:

Guests under age 18 must have parent or guardian permission to call.

*Not available at Downtown Disney District restaurants. All information, including, but not limited to, prices, offerings and location are subject to change without notice.

**Valid Theme Park admission is required, other restrictions apply. All information, including, but not limited to, prices and offerings, subject to change without notice. Seating times may vary during weekend and holiday periods.

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Walt Disney World Hotels in Orlando, Florida

Located just outside of Orlando, Florida, the Walt Disney World resort stretches across 47 square miles and welcomes millions of guests each year. Disney offers a wide range of hotels just minutes from the parks, with benefits such as free transportation and extra hours in the parks. You can book a resort in the value, moderate, deluxe or home away from home category, depending on your budget. All Disney resorts are nonsmoking and have rooms equipped for guests with special needs.

All Star Music
As a value resort, All Star Music is one of the least expensive options for staying at Disney World. Rooms have either two double beds or one king bed, and some rooms offer family suites that sleep up to six people and include a small kitchenette and two bathrooms. The resort is decorated with larger-than-life icons, with each of the 10 buildings featuring one of five different themes: Calypso, Jazz, Country, Rock and Broadway. Movies are shown nightly on a giant inflatable screen by the main pool, and other activities such as dance parties and games take place poolside throughout the day.
Disney's All Star Music Resort
1701 W Buena Vista Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Port Orleans Riverside
Southern mansions stretched along a swampy river may have you thinking you're in Louisiana, but you're still at Disney World---at Disney's Port Orleans Riverside Resort. You can choose from a room in the mansion-style buildings of Magnolia Bend or from cottages in the more rustic Cajun style of Alligator Bayou. This resort falls into Disney's moderate category and is the only moderate resort to offer rooms with a trundle bed to accommodate a fifth person. Dining options include the sit-down Boatwright's restaurant, the Riverside Mill food court, pizza delivery, a pool bar and a lounge.

Disney's Port Orleans Riverside Resort
1251 Riverside Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Animal Kingdom Lodge
Imagine waking up and stepping out to your balcony with your morning cup of coffee to watch giraffes and zebras down at the water hole. Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge puts you right in the heart of Africa, with many of their rooms overlooking a savannah filled with animals. This deluxe resort is decorated with art and artifacts from African tribes, and has activities such as nightly storytelling around the fire pit. You can dine on African cuisine at Jiko or Boma, the resort's two restaurants, order room service or grab something from the Mara food court. If your room does not overlook the savannah, you can still enjoy the public viewing areas.

Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
2901 Osceola Parkway
Bay Lake, FL 32830

Polynesian Resort
Disney's Polynesian Resort opened on the same day as Walt Disney World. Tiki statues, torches, palm trees, and bamboo surround you here, in the spirit of the resort's island theme. You can lay in a hammock to soak up the sun on the white sand beach, which looks across the Seven Seas Lagoon toward the Magic Kingdom, or come out at night for a view of the fireworks or Spirit of Aloha Luau dinner show. While most rooms have two queen beds and a daybed, suites as elaborate as the two-story King Kamehameha Suite, which has a kitchen and two bathrooms, are also available. Monorail, bus, and boat transportation to Magic Kingdom are available.

Disney's Polynesian Resort
1600 Seven Seas Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Book your Hotel near Disney World Orlando

Did you know Disney World hotels make up 50% of all hotels in the Orlando hotel market. Hotels inside Disney World offer everything from the lower nightly rates of the All Star Hotels to the more expensive Grand Floridian. There are some distinct advantages to choosing any one of the Walt Disney World hotels to stay at for the ultimate Disney vacation. First Disney requires all hotels and resorts to provide shuttle service to all theme parks every 30 minutes. This service is FREE. Second, Disney inspects all hotels inside Disney World to make sure they adhere to the highest standards in the Orlando marketplace. Lastly, if you are staying at a any one of the Disney World hotels you get the added value of having the extra hours benefit added to your vacation.

Travel to Paris and book your hotel

Paris is a dream come true… but what if you only have a few days to visit one of the most fascinating capitals in the world?
Independently or on an excursion, you can tune into the exciting rhythms of the city which constantly surprise with both a beauty so magnificent and rare.
Famous museums and monuments, cruises along the Seine, the joys of shopping and the magic of “Paris by Night” are all your, just for a few hours. 

Don’t waste your time and book a Hotel in Paris for a weekend of wonder.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Total Travel Guide to Disneyland Paris

While some people might never dream of incorporating a thoroughly American stop like Disneyland into their Paris vacation, the fact is that Disneyland Paris is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the region – and if you’re traveling with kids, a Disney-aholic, or just want a break in the usual museum/gallery routine, then a day spent at EuroDisney is a great alternative. The fact that it’s easy to reach from Paris, via car or public transportation, makes it even more appealing.

What to Do at Disneyland Paris

Like any true Disney theme park, Disneyland Resort Paris is a combination of amusement park rides, hotels, restaurants, and other recreational attractions. Euro Disney (as Disneyland Paris is often called) includes not one but two theme parks, in fact, and seven hotels.

Disneyland Park Paris
The first Disneyland Paris theme park is Disneyland Park Paris, which includes many of the same features you’ll find at other Disney properties. There’s Frontierland, Adventureland, Fantasyland, Discoveryland, and the popular Main Street U.S.A. A Disney train runs through several of the different “lands,” allowing for easy access between them.

Walt Disney Studios Park
The other theme park in Disneyland Paris is Walt Disney Studios Park. It opened after Disneyland Park Paris (Walt Disney Studios Park opened in 2002 while Disneyland Park Paris opened in 1992), and the different parts of this theme park are “studio lots.” There’s the Front Lot, Toon Studio, Production Courtyard, and Hollywood Boulevard – and there’s even a Backlot.

Disney Village
There’s more entertainment than just the two theme parks, however – Disney Village is full of restaurants, shops, and attractions that aren’t amusement park rides. The idea of Disney Village is to mimic Disney World’s “Downtown Disney” area, and you’ll find features like Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Dinner Show, an IMAX theatre, a bowling alley, and a disco.

Golf Disneyland
Disney isn’t just for the kids, as evidenced by Golf Disneyland – which has both 9-hole and 18-hole courses. (Although there is a kids section of Golf Disneyland, too!)

Lake Disney
As if it wasn’t enough to have a Disneyland Paris theme park, there’s a man-made lake at EuroDisney – called, what else, Lake Disney – which is at the center of three of the park’s resort hotels. It’s not exactly part of the recreation, but at least it’s pretty.

Where to Stay at Disneyland Paris

As mentioned, there are seven Disney-operated hotels at Disneyland Resort Paris, but those aren’t your only options. You can also choose to stay in one of the six non-Disney hotels near the park which offer free shuttle rides to and from EuroDisney. When you’re booking your hotel, if you’re planning to spend most of your time at Disneyland Paris just make sure to find out about the free shuttles – where they pick up and drop off, and when they run. Also note that if you choose to stay at Disney’s Davy Crockett Ranch (which is a Disney-operated hotel), the free shuttle buses don’t run to that hotel.

Getting Around at Disneyland Paris

You can get around most of Paris Disney easily on the Disney Railroad, including getting between the two main theme parks. There are also free shuttle buses which run between almost all the hotels in the area.

Getting to Disneyland Paris

Disneyland Resort Paris is located roughly 20 miles (32 km) east of Paris, and it’s pretty easy to get there whether you’ve got a car at your disposal or not.

*Find the most detailed information about getting from Paris to Disneyland Paris, including by train and by car, and even directions from the airport directly to EuroDisney.

Driving to Disney from Paris
Coming from Paris, you’ll want to take the A4 expressway in the direction Strasbourg/Metz. Disneyland Paris Resort is in Marne-la-Vallee. Take the Peripherique until you get to the east sector near Bercy where you’ll find the A4 exit, direction Metz/Strasbourg. To go directly to the parks, take exit 14, “Parcs Disney/Bailly-Romainvilliers.” To go to the Disney hotels, keep going and follow the signs for “Disney Hotel.” To get to Golf Disneyland, keep going and follow the “Golf” signs. To get to Disney’s Davy Crockett Ranch, take exit 13, “Provins.”

*Parking at Paris Disney is free for guests of the Disney Hotels (and some of the other Disney-approved hotels, be sure to ask when you’re booking), and otherwise costs €8 or more per day per car.

*More driving directions from other points in the region can be found on this page.

Taking the Train to Disney from Paris
Either the Thalys, the Eurostar, or the RER A4 will get you right to the entrance gate of Disneyland Paris they all stop at the “Marne-La-Vallee/Chessy” station. Not only is this station right in front of the main entrance to the parks, it’s also very close to all but one of the Disney hotels. Perhaps the easiest train trip is via the RER A from Paris – it takes just 35 minutes one-way to get from the Paris city center to Euro Disney on the express train, and trains run about every 20 minutes. The RER A stops at Charles-de-Gaulle Etoile, Auber, Chatelet-les-Halles, Gare de Lyon and Nation.

Taking the Bus to Disney from Paris Airports
If you’re just gung-ho to get to Disneyland Paris right away, then you can take an airport shuttle bus directly to the theme park. The VEA Airport Shuttle Bus links Charles de Gaulle Airport and Orly Airport with six of the Disney hotels. It runs every 15-60 minutes, 7 days a week. You can find out more on the bus company’s official website, or by calling +33 (0) 1 72 30 10 25. (Note that VEA is not suitable for disabled guests, nor is it available to or from Disney’s Davy Crockett Ranch.)

Visitor Information for Disneyland Paris
Park Open Hours: Depends on the season, but in the low season Disneyland Park Paris is open Sunday-Thursday 10:00-19:00, Friday-Saturday 10:00-21:00; Walt Disney Studios is open Sunday-Thursday 10:00-18:00, Friday-Saturday 10:00-19:00 – in the high season, the parks tend to stay open later, but don’t necessarily open earlier.

More Information for Disneyland Paris
The official Disney Paris website is here, where you then choose the country you live in (this is for both language and travel deal purposes, so you don’t necessarily want to click on the British flag if you live in the U.S. – you can get to the United States page by clicking “Other Countries” on the right and then choosing USA from the drop-down menu, or by clicking this link).

Buy Disneyland Paris tickets
You’ll find special ticket offers from Disneyland Resort Paris on this page.
(Oh, and a word of caution – these websites all come with very Disney-filed soundtracks and sound effects, so if you’re planning your Paris Disney vacation at work, you might want to hit the mute button before you visit.)

Disneyland Paris Contact Information
Telephone (in Paris) – 087 050 30303
Reservations office opening hours
 – Monday-Friday 8:15-19:45, Saturday 9:15-17:45, Sunday 9:15-16:45
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