Tag Archives: trip

Weekend Trip to Wales

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Time to get a little bit of London air out of my lungs with a weekend trip out to Wales. I had to catch the EastMidlands Train to meet up with my friend Lil that would be driving us the rest of the way. It was a little bit scary being on the highway on the left side of the road and having  roundabout just in the middle of a highway but the scenery was amazing.

We went ahead and took the toll road instead of driving through Birmingham since it was Friday and lunch time. As you can imagine, traffic is horrible at that time. But the rest of the journey was breathtaking. I missed taking a picture of the Welcome to Wales sign but you didn’t miss that you were in Wales with all the signs now in Welsh. Talk about a pretty hard language to learn but we were on a mission.

We were going to climb Snowden. The odds were against us from the start. Apparently the Snowden Marathon was going on so part of the road was closed to get to the path. Then the rain came plus add some gail force winds at about 40 degree weather and it was like the mountain was saying go back to the Bed and Breakfast.

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But we carried on. Even one local told us we were crazy for going up the mountain, however we took the easy walking path that takes about 7 hours round trip and is 10 miles. The first half was a little wet with the rain coming down on us but it was still amazing to walk along with sheep and small horses. Halfway up there is a little cafe that only takes cash and you can check in on your phone since there is still service.

After a 20 minute break it was time to now hit the tougher part of the journey. Not going to lie, I thought I wasn’t going to make it. But the people that are coming down from the summit give words of encouragement as you pass them and even times. Now the times they give is based on coming down not going up so be prepared to double that time to get an actually estimate of how much time you have.

The wind tends to pick up at you get up in elevation so get your mittens, hats and scarves out. Soon, you see a sign saying summit and an arrow and your hope of making it through is renewed! And then it happens. You see the dial from below and let out a pretty bad curse word because to get there, you have to climb some narrow rock steps and your legs are on fire and you just don’t know if you will physically make it.

Your this far away from summiting a mountain that people use to train for Everest as well as being the highest peak in England. You find a couple of M&Ms for that little boast and you make it up to the top.

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All that we can see at this point is fog. There was no visibility! However there is a gift shop. Yes there is a gift shop. So we stopped for a hot cup of tea and to buy a shirt that we climbed Snowden. Then it hits me. We have to climb down. Not going to lie there was a tear shed at this point. So after a 30 minute break we started the journey down. Now this is where I can say the weather was playing with our mental capabilities but we needed to insert the hand warmers in the gloves because we have lost all feeling in out fingers. Rather than do this inside in the nice warm building we completed that process outside in the freezing gail force winds. I was able to get my package open but Lil was a little frustrated and tried to bite into her’s. That did not work. I’m pretty sure I heard her scream in frustration until I was able to get it open and into the gloves. Those were the life savers and well worth the 2£ for them.

The journey down was a lot easier and we were able to get better pictures when the weather cleared out later in the day. A couple words of advice if you think you can climb a mountain. Be prepared! Take the easy path unless you have climbed mountains in the past. People have lost their lives by being unprepared or untrained. I work out 6 days a week and run every day and I struggled with the easy path. It’s the incline that will get you.

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Now there is an option to buy a train ticket to take you up to the top and back down, so you can still summit the mountain no matter your level of abilities. It depends on what you are up for or able to do. After, we headed back for dinner. Now, for such a small town in the mountain, you apparently need reservations for dinner so try to pre plan that portion because we didn’t and almost ended up buying food from the gas station before we found a place.

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The next day we headed up to Conway to visit the castle. Which is a proper castle! I’ve been to Buckingham and Windsor but there is something about visiting what you picture a castle to be from medical times with the stone and dungeon. Tickets weren’t that bad and we had a great opportunity of visiting the food festival that was going along in town.

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Not going to lie I bought a lot of cheese again. I tend to purchase cheese like it may never be in the grocery store again. We left a little early since I had a train to catch back into town and wanted to take the super scenic route of back roads and small towns. It’s truly how I pictured England to be. I know that London has so much to offer and most people tend to just stay in the city and visit the museums and main attractions but England is so much more than that. Get to the country and try to find the overpass that is just for cows, get a picture of a Welcome to England sign, or even climb up towards heaven where the air is fresh (yet cold).

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Hanging Out in Huatulco, Mexico #travel

Nine bays, no limits.

Huatulco (wah-tool-co) is one of Mexico’s most relaxed tourist destinations, located on Mexico’s southern Pacific coast at the edge of the Sierra Madre Mountains in the state of Oaxaca. 22-miles of picturesque beaches dot the nearly virgin Pacific coastline while nine bays make Huatulco a watersports lover’s dream. Be sure to take a trip around Huatulco’s nine bays to discover the stunning surroundings, hidden beaches, and flora and fauna. Deluxe modern resorts are set amidst a natural unspoiled setting on Tangolunda Bay. Peaceful and romantic Conejos Bay offers golden sand beaches and sapphire waters. The hemisphere’s first eco-tourism resort, EarthCheck certification has been awarded to Huatulco for its high environmental standards.

Some of our favorite resorts

Secrets Huatulco Resort & Spa

Conejos Bay, with its golden sand, beautiful rock formations and sapphire waters, welcomes Secrets Huatulco Resort & Spa, a AAA 4 Diamond Award Winner and part of the Secrets brand, voted Best Hotel Chain by Apple Vacationers. This spectacular adults only (18+) resort is gently carved into the natural landscape to give all rooms a magnificent view. The exclusive amenities of Unlimited-Luxury® start with endless meals, snacks and premium beverages, pool and beach wait service, and 24-hour room and concierge service – all without the wristband that many resorts require. Suites offer a daily refreshed premium mini bar and spectacular views, while select accommodations provide a furnished patio, balcony, terrace Jacuzzi, or swim-out pool access. Enjoy unlimited activities, including windsurfing and snorkeling, and live nightly entertainment. Guests will indulge in some of the finest international fare at any of the seven gourmet á la carte restaurants, a buffet, and more – all without reservations. Enjoy nearby golf at Campo de Golf Tangolunda or pamper yourself at the world-class Secrets Spa by Pevonia with tranquil treatments.

Dreams Huatulco Resort & Spa

Dreams Huatulco Resort & Spa, perfectly placed on Tangolunda Bay, one of the largest and most beautiful bays, is a sanctuary of both leisure and adventure for families, couples, singles, and friends. Enjoy endless day and night activities and all the privileges of Unlimited-Luxury where everything is included.

All rooms and suites boast amazing views, elegant design, and comfort. Amenities include a private terrace, satellite TV, DVD player, complimentary daily refreshed mini bar with soft drinks, juices, bottled water, and beer, 24-hour room service, and other lavish luxuries. Upgrade to a Preferred Club room and receive exceptional services and world-class amenities.

 

Quinta Real Huatulco

Bask in warmth and luxury in an exquisite Mexican atmosphere in beautiful Huatulco. Quinta Real Huatulco is located in Huatulco, Mexico, about 13 miles east of Bahias de Huatulco.

Double Moorish domed buildings mark this romantic and relaxing hotel. The small clusters of suites are integrated into the sloping hill near Tangolunda Bay and offer spectacular views of the Tangolunda Golf Course and Pacific Ocean.

Camino Real Zaashila Huatulco

Experience a spectacular vacation on a private beach on Tangolunda Bay. Camino Real Zaashila Huatulco is located in Huatulco, Mexico, about 14 miles east of Bahias de Huatulco International Airport.

One of the most exclusive resorts in the Bays of Huatulco, this shimmering sanctuary combines Mexican and Mediterranean architectural styles with 27 acres of gardens, fountains and waterfalls. Its unique, stacked design is submerged in a breathtaking natural setting, featuring a monumental, 120-meter length swimming pool, sculpted in front of the complex with a view over the Bay and endless crystal blue waters of the Pacific Ocean.

Barcelo Huatulco Beach Resort

Barcelo Huatulco Beach rests upon a shimmering beach at the head of Tangolunda Bay, the largest of the nine secluded bays of Huatulco. Built in a contemporary Mexican style, this is a prestigious resort in Huatulco, known for its luxury and green sustainability. A distinctive resort where you’ll enjoy a variety of land and water sports, you will be able to enjoy the beautiful grounds, the swimming pool, or just go for a stroll along the sapphire waves of the Pacific Ocean, as they are all just a few steps from your room.

Contact Traveline for more information or give us a call at 1-888-700-8747.

 

 

Sun in St. Croix #travel

Paradise found…

St. Croix, the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands (no passports needed for USA Citizens), offers a tranquil tropical destination for vacationers, honeymooners, scuba divers, and more. Rich in cultural diversity, St. Croix has a past filled with a fascinating history. Experience the unique culture of St. Croix through its arts, crafts, music, and more during a variety of festivals and cultural events throughout the year. St. Croix provides gorgeous beaches, world-class recreational activities, fine dining, casino action, and golf. Although only 22.7 miles long and 8 miles at its widest point, the landscape of St. Croix is surprisingly diverse. Visiting just the two main towns of Saint Croix will give you a glimpse of the island’s incredible history, from regal 18th and 19th-century homes in Christiansted to a tropical rain forest in Frederiksted.

Some of our favorite resorts:

Divi Carina Bay Resort

Divi Carina Bay All-Inclusive Beach Resort & Casino is a lively retreat nestled on the secluded eastern shoreline of beautiful St. Croix. The resort, 25 miles from the airport, lies along a 1000-foot stretch of white sand on Grapetree Beach. The clear waters of the U.S. Virgin Islands beckon travelers to take a dip, while hammocks stretched under swaying palms provide opportunities to dry-off and relax. The Vegas-style casino accommodates adventurous gamers looking to try their luck.

Enjoy modern beachfront guestrooms, poolside dining, watersports, live entertainment, and the value that comes with an all-inclusive package.

The Buccaneer

Treat yourself to a spectacular getaway at The Buccaneer, a luxurious beach resort that encompasses all the best St. Croix has to offer. Situated on 300 tropical acres, The Buccaneer is less than a five-minute drive from the historic town of Christiansted, where guests can enjoy a fine variety of shopping, dining, and sightseeing. This amazing resort hotel was founded in the 17th century and family-run for generations.

Renaissance St. Croix

Lush green mountains, unspoiled white sands, and crystal-clear waters await the discerning traveler at Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa. Nestled among the tropical scenery of Davis Bay, seven miles north of the airport, the resort offers 151 beautiful air-conditioned rooms, the convenience of Carambola Golf Course, and unparalleled snorkeling and diving opportunities.

Golfers will find the lavish fairways of the adjacent Carambola Golf Course surpass their expectations. Designed by Robert Jones, Sr., the course works its way through 6,843-yards of verdant, tropical terrain and houses 94 bunkers, along with its renowned par-three holes. On site, guests have their pick of four complimentary outdoor tennis courts, fishing, scuba and snorkeling services, and a jogging trail perfect for taking in the scenery while maintaining exercise habits. There is also a full-service spa and fitness center.

Contact Traveline for more information at 1-888-700-8747.

Eco-Friendly Vacations

Planning to travel this summer? An eco-friendly vacation will have you enjoying the outdoors while simultaneously preserving the environment. Better yet, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of how your environmental contribution positively impacts local culture, wildlife, flora, and more.

Help to preserve your favorite destination for years to come by booking the eco-friendly vacation of your choice. And remember, going green starts with you.

Barceló Hotels & Resorts

Various Green initiatives at Barceló Hotels & Resorts include:

  • Gold Certification from Green Globe
  • Established beach clean-up programs
  • Education stations available for guests to learn about care of local ecosystems and wildlife
  • Reusing towels and sheets to conserve water and energy
  • Automatic light control in public areas and eco-friendly light bulbs
  • On-site nursery that produces 60% of the plants used in local reforestation
  • Nesting areas on the beach during turtle season to protect baby turtles

Couples Resorts

Various Green initiatives at Couples Resorts include:

  • Environmentally-friendly cleaning products
  • Energy efficient air conditioners
  • 85% of menu items prepared with products from local farmers and growers
  • Use of electronic hand dryers instead of paper towels

Dreams Resorts & Spas

Various Green initiatives at Dreams Resorts & Spas include:

  • Rainforest Alliance Verification
  • Distintivo “S”
  • Beach clean-up programs
  • Participation in the Amigos de Sian Ka’an Program, which promotes community and environmental development
  • Actively involved in Planet Hour and Earth Day
  • Plant and wildlife preservation
  • Eco-friendly cleaning products

Click here for more hotel brands or contact Traveline for more information at 1-888-7000-8747

Loving London #travel

England may be on most people’s bucket lists, but covering quintessential London can easily be one all on its own. Few other cities in the world come close to the tradition, romance, history, and contemporary excitement of this vast city of seven million souls and even more adventures waiting to be had. Meet Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, Sumatran tiger cubs at the zoo, or try to catch a glimpse of the growing Royal Family. Be the one to make a Beefeater crack a smile at the Changing of the Guard, checking the schedule against Big Ben, or ride the London Eye to confirm if London Bridge is, in fact, falling down. Enjoy afternoon tea after a day in botanical Kew Gardens, browsing posh department stores like Harrods, or at the longest shopping street in all of Europe: Oxford Street. An extensive mass transit system makes sure you get to all of these, as well as the street markets, designer boutiques, restaurants, pubs, nightclubs, West End theaters, and the infinite list of brilliant ways to fall in love with London.

londonHotelMapClick for larger image

Some of our favorite London Hotels

51 Buckingham Gate

This hotel has 86 lavish suites with fully-equipped kitchens and luxurious amenities. Indulge at the Michelin starred Quilon Restaurant and relax at the exclusive Spa at 51.

Grosvenor House, A JW Marriott Hotel

Experience luxury in the heart of London at the Grosvenor House, A JW Marriott Hotel. Located in London’s Mayfair neighborhood, close to the West End theatre district, this historical hotel was opened in 1929, and was restored to become a JW Marriott Hotel in 2008. Despite its central location, this hotel is in a world of its own behind the original Lutyens wrought-iron gates. Lavish guest rooms and suites offer both style and convenience so you can make the most of your London stay.

Hilton Waldorf

The Waldorf Hilton enjoys one of London’s most enviable locations as it bridges the West End and the Square Mile, providing an excellent base for accessing the main financial district in the day and the popular cultural hub of Covent Garden and Theatreland in the evening.

All newly refurbished rooms include wall mounted plasma screen televisions, latest hi-tech shower and a specially designed sleeping experience.

The May Fair

The May Fair is a luxury hotel that was opened by King George V in 1927. It offers 400 bedrooms and suites, a luxury spa, a fine-dining restaurant, the May Fair Bar, and a casino. The rooms offer complimentary WiFi, 24-hour room service, and turndown service.

The Bloomsbury

The Bloomsbury is a boutique hotel located on Great Russell Street in the heart of 18th-century Bloomsbury, near the British Museum. 153 rooms offer free WiFi, turndown service, and coffee makers.

 

Contact Traveline at 1-888-700-8747 for more information.