Thursday, September 27, 2012

Christmas River Cruising with AMA Waterways

amawaterways.jpg AmaWaterways 2012 Christmas Time Cruises

Bring The Holidays to Life

Celebrate the Season Exploring European Christmas Markets

From caroling along cobblestone streets of Europe to sipping seasonal hot spiced-wine, AmaWaterways lights up the Rhine and Danube Rivers this holiday season with its popular Christmas Time cruises across seven countries on five unique ships. With over a dozen Christmas markets, AmaWaterways’ passengers are immersed in the local, festive atmosphere while exploring historic cities.

“The holiday spirit comes alive in Europe’s Christmas markets and we love that our guests can enjoy this special time of year with us,” said Kristin Karst, AmaWaterways’ executive vice president and co-owner. “AmaWaterways celebrates the season with on-board entertainment, festive decorations and overall holiday cheer. An experience like this only comes once a year and we anticipate another strong season for our Christmas cruises.”

The European Christmas Markets take over market squares and narrow cobblestone streets with festively decorated wooden stalls adorned with lights and evergreen. Starting in late November, vendors sell local food, hot wine, and sweet desserts like gingerbread and pastries. Local artisans create wooden toys, handmade crafts ornaments and more unique gifts and stocking stuffers for loved ones back home. Explore amongst Gothic churches and half-timbered houses for the winter experience that fills the senses with holiday cheer. AmaWaterways’ 2012 Christmas cruise itineraries and dates are as follows:

Christmas Time Cruise – The 10-night itinerary starts with two nights in Prague, Czech Republic. Passengers travel to Nuremberg, Germany to embark on the Danube River onboard one of AmaWaterways’ signature ships: AmaCerto, AmaDolce, AmaLegro or AmaLyra. In Nuremberg, passengers visit the world’s largest Christmas market and then cross the Continental Divide on their way to Regensburg to explore Germany’s best preserved medieval cities. Travelers also visit Austria’s beautiful cities such as Passau, Linz, Melk and Vienna. The itinerary includes excursions to Salzburg, the setting for “The Sound of Music”; Benedictine Abbey tour in Melk; optional Mozart and Strauss concert in Vienna; and local Christmas markets at each stop. Ending in Budapest, Hungary, passengers explore old Buda and modern Pest which includes sightseeing stops at the distinctive Fisherman’s Bastion, the Royal Palace and St. Stephen’s Basilica. North American travelers can book voyages from Nov. 18- Dec. 25, 2012.

Christmas on the Rhine
– The 12-night itinerary starts in Switzerland with two nights in elegant Zurich then two nights in captivating Lucerne, exploring local Christmas markets and the Lion Monument. In Basel, travelers explore Switzerland’s second largest city before embarking on the AmaCello, a 148-passenger ship, for a 7-night cruise. Passengers cruise on the Rhine River from Basel to Amsterdam enjoying both French and German scenery along the way. Passengers can choose between the Colmar, France “Alsace” excursion with wine tasting or the “Black Forest” region of Germany. The itinerary includes a visit to Strasbourg, the capital of the Alsace region in northeastern France; a medieval tour in Speyer; a tour of the red-walled castle in Heidelberg; a tour of Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim; a tour through the charming town of Koblenz; a visit to the 13th century gothic cathedral in Cologne; and a canal cruise and city tour in Amsterdam. North American travelers can book voyages from Nov. 25- Dec. 23, 2012.

AmaWaterways’ Christmas cruises are available on five of its European ships: the AmaCerto, AmaLegro, AmaCello, AmaDagio and AmaLyra. This award-winning fleet features the most advanced ship designs in the river cruise industry with luxurious cruise accommodations. Amenities include spacious staterooms and suites (most with French or Twin Balconies), multiple dining venues, spas, swimming pools and fitness centers, an Infotainment system with Hollywood movies in every stateroom and complimentary Wi-Fi. Special highlights include lectures, themed dinners, cooking demonstrations and onboard music performances. Additionally, AmaWaterways offers a fleet of bicycles onboard these ships for passengers wanting to explore the serene paths along the rivers (capacity controlled).

Contact us to book an AMA Waterways river cruise or see the Cruise with Naka’s page for more cruises and cruising information.

About AmaWaterways

Founded in 2002 by river cruise pioneer Rudi Schreiner, river cruise executive Kristin Karst and founder of Brendan Vacations, Jimmy Murphy, AmaWaterways is the premier river cruise line on Europe’s Danube, Rhine, Main, Mosel and Rhône rivers. Known for its custom-designed ships, extensive complimentary amenities and personalized service levels, AmaWaterways consistently leads the way in river cruising. With destinations traveling through Europe, Russia, Vietnam and Cambodia, and new voyages to Africa and Portugal the line’s award-winning fleets compliment a variety of travel plans.

The Europe fleet includes the AmaPrima (2013); AmaCerto (2012); AmaVerde (2011); AmaBella (2010); AmaLyra (2009); AmaDolce (2009); AmaCello (2008), AmaDante (2008); AmaLegro (2007) and the AmaDagio (2006). In the spring of 2012, AmaWaterways introduced the new 164-passenger AmaCerto in Europe, joining the AmaVerde and AmaBella in offering an exclusive Twin Balcony design in the majority of staterooms; multiple dining venues; complimentary Internet and Infotainment system, a heated swimming pool or whirlpool on the Sun Deck plus many more unique design elements.

In addition to the European destinations, AmaWaterways offers the separate and distinct AmaVoyages to Vietnam and Cambodia via the AmaLotus (2011) and the La Marguerite (2009); Russia via the AmaKatarina (2011); Portugal via the AmaVida (2013); and Africa via the Zambezi Queen (2009).

Explore Japan by Rail: JR Pass Rates September 27 2012

The Japan Rail Pass, which is issued by the JR (Japan Railway) Group, offers travelers excellent value for money and convenience. The Rail Pass enables the almost unlimited use of JR trains and its affiliated bus and ferry services within various areas of Japan. The Japan Rail Pass can also be used for the Tokyo monorail to Haneda Airport and the Narita Express to Narita Airport.

The Japan Rail Pass is available only to people from abroad who wish to travel to Japan as “temporary visitors” for sightseeing. The pass must be purchased before entering Japan.

Japan Rail Pass exchange rate for September 27th 2012 through October 3rd 2012 - 1 USD =79.49 JPY

JR Pass prices are updated for the current exchange rate every Thursday.

See http://www.nakastrav … l.com/rail-pass.html for details and current pricing.

jrrail.jpg

Japan’s four major islands, Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku are covered by an extensive and reliable network of railways. About 70 percent of Japan’s railway network is owned and operated by the Japan Railways (JR), while the remaining 30 percent belongs to dozens of other private railway companies, especially in and around metropolitan areas.

The Japan Railways Group, more commonly known as JR Group (JRグループ), is made up of six regional passenger railway companies, which are JR Hokkaido, JR East, JR Central, JR West, JR Shikoku, and JR Kyushu, and one nationwide freight railway company, JR Freight. Together they operate a nationwide network of urban, regional and inter-regional train lines, night trains and shinkansen (bullet trains).

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Save on Airfare with 2013 Europe Globus Tours*

globus.jpg Up to $600 Air Credit per couple on 2013 Europe Tours*

On a Globus tour, you never lift a finger, you never lift a bag.

On a Globus tour, every arrangement, every reservation is made for you.

On a Globus tour there are no hassles, no headaches. When you tour, you enjoy.

Featured European Escorted Tours

A Taste of Italy
7 days from Rome to Venice

You’ve heard about Italy—its romance, mouth-watering cuisine, excellent wine, fabulous art, splendid beauty, ancient ruins, extraordinary statues, and remarkable architecture. On this tour, get a taste of what Italy has to offer and explore its most famous cities—Rome, Florence, and Venice. Just imagine the memories you’ll create on this fabulous vacation to Italy.

Britain Sampler
9 days from London to London

Our most popular Britain vacation offers you the best of this great land. Guided sightseeing shows you all the famous landmarks in London: Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, and visits to St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Changing of the Guard, if held. Head southwest to admire the breathtaking gardens at Henry VIII’s Hampton Court Palace, then venture on to prehistoric Stonehenge.

Essential Europe
11 days from Rome to London

This is one of our most popular Europe trips. You will stop in major cities like Florence, Venice, Lucerne, and Paris. All “must-see” features—such as St. Peter’s, the Sistine Chapel, and the Colosseum in Rome; Michelangelo’s David in Florence; St. Mark’s Square in Venice; the second floor of the Eiffel Tower in Paris; and St. Paul’s Cathedral in London—are included, with a Local Guide in each city.

Contact us or book Globus vacation packages online. See the Tour with Naka’s page to book package tours around the world.

About Globus

It all began more than 80 years ago when a young man purchased a rowboat to transport visitors across Lake Lugano, Switzerland. Who would have thought that this single rowboat would launch one of the world’s leading travel companies?

Today, the Globus family of brands is a global company reaching every corner of the world, yet remains family-owned and steeped in the values Antonio had when he set out across Lake Lugano—to enlighten travelers by showing them the very best of the destinations we know so well.

Reasons to Travel with Globus

  • A variety of travel styles and specialty travel to meet the desires of today’s traveler.
  • VIP access means no waiting in lines to see major sites throughout your journey.
  • Inside visits to major and must-see sites are included in the vacation price.
  • Expert Tour Directors share their unique stories and knowledge to help you truly experience each destination like a local.
  • First-class and above pre-selected hotels are located right where you want to be.

*Book a 2013 Globus air-inclusive Europe (including Israel) vacation on Austrian, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa, SWISS or United Airlines from a US point of origin by October 30, 2012 to receive the $300 per person air credit. Or book any other carrier by November 27, 2012 to receive the $250 per person air credit. Must be booked, under deposit and discount applied between September 19 and November 27, 2012 for travel between January 1 and October 31, 2013. Not applicable on Instant Purchase Air. Applies to coach class only. Air must be purchased through Globus in conjunction with a Europe tour. Air credit will apply to the per person air price and is non-transferable. Offers not valid with any other offer except Journeys Club Repeat Traveler benefit. Applies to new 2013 bookings only, and offer will not be applied to pre-existing bookings. An additional $300 non-refundable deposit is required for air booked in conjunction with a land vacation. Once airfare is confirmed and Globus has received your full air and land deposit, your air-inclusive price is guaranteed. Globus reserves the right to ticket passengers upon receipt of full land and air deposit any subsequent changes and/or revisions to airline reservations at your request after receipt of full land deposit are subject to revision fees and/or airline-imposed change or cancellation fees. These fees are a minimum of $300 and in some instances may be up to 100% of the ticket price. In addition, promotional discounts do not carry forward on changed air bookings. However, promotions in effect at the time of the change will apply. Total air price includes all government-imposed taxes and fees applicable at the time of booking. Air price, air tax and security fees are non-commissionable. Additional airline fees for baggage may apply. For the most current airline-imposed baggage fees, please check the following website, www.iflybags.com. Offer reliant on space availability. Full cancellation penalties will apply. Additional restrictions may apply.

Explore Japan by Rail: JR Pass Rates September 20 2012

The Japan Rail Pass, which is issued by the JR (Japan Railway) Group, offers travelers excellent value for money and convenience. The Rail Pass enables the almost unlimited use of JR trains and its affiliated bus and ferry services within various areas of Japan. The Japan Rail Pass can also be used for the Tokyo monorail to Haneda Airport and the Narita Express to Narita Airport.

The Japan Rail Pass is available only to people from abroad who wish to travel to Japan as “temporary visitors” for sightseeing. The pass must be purchased before entering Japan.

Japan Rail Pass exchange rate for September 20th 2012 through September 26th 2012 - 1 USD =79.49 JPY

JR Pass prices are updated for the current exchange rate every Thursday.

See http://www.nakastrav … l.com/rail-pass.html for details and current pricing.

jrrail.jpg

Japan’s four major islands, Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku are covered by an extensive and reliable network of railways. About 70 percent of Japan’s railway network is owned and operated by the Japan Railways (JR), while the remaining 30 percent belongs to dozens of other private railway companies, especially in and around metropolitan areas.

The Japan Railways Group, more commonly known as JR Group (JRグループ), is made up of six regional passenger railway companies, which are JR Hokkaido, JR East, JR Central, JR West, JR Shikoku, and JR Kyushu, and one nationwide freight railway company, JR Freight. Together they operate a nationwide network of urban, regional and inter-regional train lines, night trains and shinkansen (bullet trains).

Monday, September 17, 2012

Trafalgar: Save up to $2000 per couple on Europe in 2013

trafalgar-logo.png Visit the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin and learn how to pour the perfect pint. Be an invited guest for dinner at the private villa of an Italian Count. Uncover the secret behind an 18th century windmill in Paris.

With Trafalgar, you’ll feel like a traveler not a tourist. We reveal Europe’s hidden places, arrange amazing encounters with local people, and share traditions you may miss by traveling on your own. It’s an insider’s view that’s value-packed with experiences you won’t find any other way.

Not only have prices dropped as much as 13% for 2013, we’re also offering incredible savings of up to $2,000 per couple. This fall, book early for 2013 for not only the best land deal, but historically also the best air pricing. Here’s what’s on offer:

  • Save up to $1,500 per couple for a limited-time with Trafalgar’s new and improved 10% Early Payment Discount on 2013 Europe vacations booked and paid in full by December 27, 2012.*
  • Past guests save up to $2,000 per couple with our 10% Early Payment Discount, plus 5% Past Guest Travel Club discount.^ This also applies to past guests of our sister companies, Insight, Uniworld, Brendan, African or Contiki!

This promotion is combinable with all brochure discounts, including our 5% Friends & Family!

With our price decreases, that means up to 38% savings on 2013 versus 2012.

Contact Naka’s Travel Service to book your Trafalgar vacations today - see more package tours around the world on the Tour with Naka’s page!

About Trafalgar

Operating since 1947, Trafalgar offers a wide range of holidays to Europe, Britain, Egypt, USA, Canada, South America, China, Australia and New Zealand, we’ve hosted over 2 million travelers worldwide and many return year after year.

Trafalgar is renowned and trusted for its outstanding quality, service, reliability and financial stability. With over 60 years of practice we’ve perfected the art of creating exceptional guided vacations. Every expertly designed travel experience includes transportation, via deluxe motor coach, rail or cruise ship, first class hotel accommodation, daily sightseeing and most meals and at at savings of up to 30% off the cost of doing it “on your own”.

Trafalgar continuously strives to fulfill our guests’ needs and exceed their expectations – attention to detail ensures you will enjoy a totally hassle-free vacation. We provide the perfect balance between organized activities and free time for individual exploration and relaxation – all you have to do is Dream. Pack. And leave… the rest to us.

Terms and Conditions: *Save up to $1,500 per couple ($750 per person) is based on Trafalgar’s Early Payment Discount when full payment is received by December 27, 2012. Early Payment Discount savings will vary by itinerary and is not valid on all vacations and/or departure dates –see 2013 First Class Europe & Britain brochure or Pricing and Availability itinerary page online for valid dates and savings amounts. Sample savings is based on Trafalgar’s European Supreme itinerary departing 08/11/13. Discount is not valid with other promotional offers, but may be combined with most brochure discounts. Subject to availability and offer may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Other conditions apply. ^Save up to $2,000 per couple based on Travel Club Discount (Frequent Traveler Discount) and Early Payment Discount for European Supreme departing 8/11/13. Travel Club Discount valid one per person, per year; not applicable on all itineraries; must be booked within 5 years of last trip; other conditions apply. CST#2077132-20