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Planning a trip? How to select travel guide books that are a fine investment?

You’ve been saving up all year long for your dream vacation . You go to sleep with visions of adventure, sightseeing and a new perspective of the world at large . You’ve taken care of your airfare, transportation, insurance and a common itinerary. If you’re going far afield from your home base, you know that travel direct books are a necessity.

If you’re not a seasoned traveler, you might be shortchanging yourself with the basic , all-around travel guide book. You need at least one all-purpose travel guide book which covers the basics .

Sightseeing must-do’s, getting around, a few restaurant and hotel recommendations, and a short recap of museum attractions are all you need , right? Not so fast! Let’s take a look at some of the specialized travel guide books that can make all the difference between a ho-hum experience and a truly enchanting and memorable trip.

Wouldn’t you love to stay in a medieval castle with modern plumbing, for the same price as a plain-Jane chain hotel? If your stay is extended , wouldn’t you like to know where you can stay in a fully-furnished apartment for the same price as a hotel? Take benefits of this type of travel guide book. If your route involves traveling from city to city, your hotel accommodations become more important.

Check your bookstore for travel books that review hundreds of hotels, residencies and B&B accommodations. Such books are written by devoted and regular travelers who find out those cheap sleeps and out of the way hotels, with an eye to value, charm and amenities. Such a travel guide is worth its weight in gold.

If you’re into museum hopping, make the most of your trip with a travel guide devoted to museums. Your trip time is limited. A museum guide can help you zero in on the ones you’d kick yourself for missing.

If you love shopping, or are on a business buying trip, investing in a shopping travel guide book pays you ten times over. This assortment of travel guide book is written by a shopaholic, experienced in those little out of the way shops you’d never find on your own, except perhaps by accident. Detailed descriptions of the type and quality of goods available in any given shop will save you lots of time and research, leading you by the hand to insider gems.

If you’re going to a non-English speaking country, a travel guide book of conversational phrases can be very useful! Such books cover many common foreign dilemmas. When are the banks and post offices open? What’s the present etiquette on tipping? How about ordering at a restaurant? Where do you do your laundry? This type of travel guide keeps you on the planet, so to speak, in a foreign country.

Come to think of it, perusing the travel section in your local book store just adds to the excitement of your upcoming trip. A great way to stretch your travel dollar and your memories, once you’re back home.

NB: Please take a moment to browse our fabulous Travel Posters and Prints, featuring photography and artwork that will bring to life all those favorite travel destinations.

Top Ten Travel Destinations

The world has many fascinating things to offer, and putting together top ten travel destinations is pretty difficult give the geographical and cultural diversity. This article refers to the most popular locations identified or recognized starting from the statistics made with international travel agencies, and on the basis of travelers’ reviews posted on a number of web pages.

Top ten travel destinations

Latin America deserves a place on the list with Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, Peru as favorite destinations but the remnants of the ancient Maya and Inca civilizations, or the modern and sunny Cancun are not to be overlooked either. The cultural charge, the leisure activities combined with some great weather conditions, make this part of the world become the holiday destination of millions of tourists from all over the world.

Europe deserves its good name for the great sights it offers to travelers: Paris, Rome, Venice, Spain’s Arab treasures and the misty lands of Ireland and Scotland, and these are just a few of the things that make the old continent one in the top ten travel destinations. Palma de Mallorca and Ibiza require a special mention here, as they complete the list of exotic resorts in the European part of the world.

Top ten travel destinations

The Egyptian Pyramids and Morocco mark any foreigner who visits them, and travel agencies sell thousands of touristic packages for holidays on the dark continent. One of the features of African resorts consists in the constant touristic push and a magic harmony in the mixture of cultures that mingle so thoroughly in the crowded North-African cities. No matter if you visit retreats in oases or famous resorts, this part of Africa will always rank among the top ten travel destinations.

Nepal, Bhutan and other countries on the Asian roof of the world fascinate and charm visitors alike. It is the Nepalese capital city, Kathmandu, with millennia of history that embraces most of the tourist crowds. As for the climbing of the Everest, very few courageous people dare to venture on the crests of Himalaya.

Top ten travel destinations

Last but not least, an impressive number of sunny islands can be included in a top ten travel destinations list: Bali, Jamaica, Crete, Hawaii and many others, which is why the list needs to be a lot more comprehensive, as so are the beauties man and God created. It goes without saying that the places closest to a person’s heart remain the ones to attract him/her for further exploration, and therefore, anyone can create a list of top ten travel destinations.

NB: Don’t forget to browse our World Regions Gallery for the best in Travel Prints and Posters, or jump straight to:

Hawaii Travel Packages

All travel agencies worldwide have Hawaii as a favorite holiday destination. The reputation of these islands as a paradisaic location, the pleasantly warm weather, the spectacular ocean swell and lots of other local attractions keep Hawaii on the first position in the tops of most popular destinations.

Thus, with such a rich variety of Hawaii travel packages, the tourist needs to look carefully for the most advantageous choice. Hawaii represents a good destination throughout the year giving its beauties away to the visitor: there are palm-fringed beaches, storming rivers flowing through canyons, smoking volcanoes, blue lagoons, exotic rain forests and breath-taking water falls.

Hawaii travel packages

You can choose Hawaii travel packages for any of the six major islands: Molokai, Oahu, Hawaii, Maui, Kauai and Lanai. Each of them has distinct complex features that make them impossible to exhaust in terms of attractions this is actually the reason why people choose other Hawaii travel packages for next vacations.

Besides great tourist services, warm waters and sandy beaches, Hawaii gives one a first hand experience of what active volcanoes are like in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. This could be the closest experience to red-hot lava in a lifetime, as you may never get the chance to repeat the experience.

If you think that the Hawaii from Hollywood films is just a beautiful or embellished story, you will pleasantly surprised to discover it is not. Some people even say this is paradise on earth, then, on a sun-drenched group of islands in the middle of the Pacific ocean, you could be living a dream.

The truth is that Hawaii travel packages don’t come cheap, but there is a trick about when to plan your vacation so as to save some hundreds of dollars. If you want to make the trip during the winter holidays you will most likely find very high prices for the services.

Hawaii travel packages

Another idea is not to pick the time of the year when the ocean swell is most favorable for surfing, otherwise you will also find the resorts pretty crowded. If you’ve found a reliable travel agency you will get advice in the direction of making a good deal and getting the most for your dollars.

High comfort levels are provided all throughout Hawaii, and sometimes it is preferable to pay for a trip in a retreated corner than to come in the middle of the most expensive resorts where the luxury strikes the eye. Moreover, anything too extravagant could also prove beyond your capacity to pay.

NB: Don’t forget to browse our superb selection of Hawaii Posters and Fine Art Prints in our Hawaii Gallery.

Travel Information for USA

USA Travel Guide

The Lonely Planet is a recognizable and appreciated series and its USA edition has 129 pages of maps. It also highlights the major attractions and points out the very best National Parks. There are suggestions for road trips and some destinations, away from the common routes.

The sheer size of America can be devastating for the first time traveler. A USA Travel Guide is sensible and there are a number of quality ones available. Whether an overseas visitor or an American wanting to see the country, these guides have helpful maps, general information and highlights on sightseeing.

The United States is a wonderful holiday destination with its cities, deserts, mountains, and National Parks. There is something for each person with wildlife, culture, and entertainment.

The Rough Guide series is also very accepted , particularly with the younger generation of travelers. Their USA Travel Guide is broken down into the different states and lists the tourist places. There are helpful reviews on accommodation, restaurants and bars and advice from experts on different activities. Historic sights, culture spots and nightlife are all discussed. It’s great for finding your way about too with maps and plans for every state, region , and large city.

There is something very romantic when it comes to road trips in America and many books, songs and movies about long rides down lonely highways have inspired people to follow suit. If this is you, then the perfect USA Travel Guide is the Road Trip USA: Cross-country Adventures on America’s Two-lane Highways. This full color book has been revised and is in its 4th edition with efficient information. 140 maps, full of detail, will aid with the planning. Cross-country routes are mapped out and landmarks are highlighted along the way. Aside from the major cites, small towns are featured and anything that might be of notice on the roadside.

Recommended itineraries comprises of lists of places to stay. The radio is very significant for road trips in America. It keeps you company and updates you on road and weather conditions. This USA Travel Guide gives the call letters of a variety of radio stations.

You may not want a general guide but a specific one for the location of your choice. Should that be the Big Apple, then the Rough Guide to New York City is the book for you. It explores the five boroughs and there are articles on the city’s fascinating history, its ethnic make up, world famous architecture and culture. This is very much a baseball town and you can study all about the sport and Yankee Stadium’s place in it. There is an entire chapter on the iconic Museum of Modern Art. Practical advice covers accommodation, transport and bars and restaurants.

The USA Eyewitness Travel guide picks out the main attractions at an easy glance and includes a brief article on the history. Travelers can plan visits to National Parks, cities, galleries and museums. The USA Travel Guide points out scenic routes and where you’ll find areas of gorgeous wilderness. The history, sights and cultural institutions of diverse regions are incorporated. Tips are given on how to arrange for a trip to America and what laws and customs apply. For more information connected to travel go to The World Traveler

Great links:
Buying Cheap Internet Airfare Flight Offers
traveling with pets

See also our outstanding selection of USA Posters and Prints in our USA Gallery.

If you are traveling on vacation in Arizona (visiting the Grand Canyon and Sedona), be sure to spend a day at the Out of Africa Wildlife Preserve, just south of the Flagstaff area.

The park is a great way for you to see the most beautiful tigers, lions, and giraffes in a totally beautiful environment – where they have access to to freely roam large areas of this spectacular wildlife preserve.

As part of the admission, you can board a jeep-type vehicle and go on a 45-minute “Serengeti Safari” with expert tour guides narrating the tour.

There is also an hour-long tram or trolley tour of the park where you will have access to unobstructed photo platforms that provide excellent photo opportunities of lions, tigers, wolves, hyena and other predators that roam in their large natural habitats.

What I love about the park is the overall cleanliness of the park and the meticulous and humane care that is given to the animals – and that is all due to the passionate (and compassionate) owners, Dean & Prayeri Harrison. Park tourists can come up and touch the snakes!

The park has two primary tours, which are a wildlife photographer’s dream come true:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMJZBjeYwtc

The Wildlife Preserve is an educational hour-long tram or trolley tour, which circles the large-habitat homes of lions, tigers, wolves, hyena, bears, mountain lions and other predators.

Unobstructed photo decks are the perfect staging for an unforgettable photograph of the park’s majestic animals. Highlighting the best of Arizona tourism – the VIP tour also includes lunch and hands-on animal encounters.

NB: Don’t forget to browse our astounding Wildlife Gallery for the best in Wildlife Posters and Prints

Though there are many great US-based vacation destinations, sometimes we get the itch to travel internationally. If you are like most people, you have probably dreamed of traveling to the beautiful country of Australia.

All over the world are opportunities to enjoy varied vacation experiences, but in Australia there are wonderful beaches perfect for scuba diving or snorkeling, incredibly nice and welcoming locals, and the land is also a safe and wonderful place to visit.

Overview of the Nation

Australia is the sixth largest country in the world, making it twice as large as Europe, except not nearly as crowded. That means you have plenty of activities without being the intense tourist magnet that Europe experiences.

There are over 7000 beaches to play around on, and the most amazing fauna you could ever see in your life. Australia’s culture has so much to offer as well.

English is spoken in Australia but with a little twist. People there often insert words that are only known to the natives, so it may be a bit difficult to understand everything they are saying.

For example, instead of calling someone “buddy,” they call that person a cobber; and rather than suggesting that a person dress warmly, they tell you to”rag up.” So, the English language it is, but you still may want to consider studying up on their native slang.

Climate and Environment

The climate is opposite the United States. It is the months of December to February that are the warmest, as those are their summer months, so if you are traveling there during those months it is best to dress lightly.

The air is very humid as well; plan to bring a little bug repellant and some sunscreen. The nights tend to get chilly, though; bringing a light jacket will help with the cool air, especially if you are traveling to the Southern region.

There is no question that if you are headed for the bushes, you will need a comfortable and durable pair of boots for the hikes.

Additional Considerations

Other tips that are important include knowing drivers travel on the left side of the road, so take note before you get on the road, and pay attention once you do.

Finally, Australians are the opposite of Americans when it comes to tipping as well. They tend to consider it bad taste unless a special occasion.

Australia is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, and with its immense diversity. There is something to see for everyone. From the bush area to the Great Barrier Reef and everything in between, Australia is simply a vacation of a lifetime.

Don’t forget to browse our superb selection of Australia Posters and Fine Prints.

With the stresses of work, family schedules, finances and kids, most couples need the occasional break – a romantic retreat to rekindle their romance, invigorate their relationship and give them time to simply relax.

If you’re looking for the perfect romantic getaway that combines worry-free planning, all-inclusive budgeting and romantic sparkle, cruise travel is a great option.

To learn about how to book the best romantic cruise for you and your loved one – regardless of your cruise destination – keep reading for great tips on everything from what to look for in a cruise ship to how to get the best deals for your spouse.

Opt For a Cruise with an Age Limit

The last thing you want on your romantic getaway is to be surrounded by toddlers on their way to a puppet show at the children’s pool. So, book a cruise with an enforced age limit.

Most cruise lines offer cruises that restrict boarding to both individuals 25 and older or married individuals 21 and older. The bulk of these cruises are specifically targeted toward couples and will offer amenities like increased room service, couples’ massages, formal dining and couples’ activities.

If you’re unable to find a cruise with an age limit that’s right for you, most ships offer areas, including pools that are adults-only.

Stay Away From “Singles” Cruises

In contrast to couples’ cruises, some cruise lines offer cruise vacations that are specifically for single travelers or the ‘spring break’ party crowd. Unless you want to spend your romantic getaway immersed in loud dance music and terrible pick up lines, you’re going to want to stay away from these options.

Pick a Boat Size That Works For You

A larger boat may have more passengers and a less intimate “feel,” but it also allows for greater anonymity while on-board ship and a larger range of facilities. When choosing a ship, think about what’s important for you in terms of privacy and boat size.

Get the Balcony

As tempting as it may be to book an inside cabin for a discount, know that the space is small and often windowless. If this cruise is a once-in-a-lifetime romantic treat, it’s time to splurge and opt for a cabin with a romantic balcony. When you’re watching the stars go by from bed, you’ll be thankful.

How to Get Great Couples’ Deals

Booking as a couple gives you an advantage. You can often look for “companion” rates that apply to either cabin bookings or air fare to your port. Many cruise lines and some air carriers offer a companion discount for couples traveling together.

Don’t forget to view our vibrant Travel Prints and Posters in our Travel Gallery.

How to Book the Optimal Golf Resort Throughout Spain

Part of the thrill in planning a family vacation comes in imagining the seemingly endless options you may have available to make a fun trip. The world is simply filled with enjoyable travel packages that can take you to exciting lands. And one of your “can’t miss” choices is playing some of the great golf courses in Spain.

If you want to combine amazing prices with an incredible golf hotel, Spain is where you need to go. The service is at European levels, the grounds are incredible, the golf is even better and the prices are affordable.

The majority of golf hotels and resorts are centered in and around Costa Del Sol, home to famous courses like the Robert Trent Jones-designed Valderrama Golf Club.

But that’s not the only hot course in the region or the country. Costa del Sol is home to 36 courses alone and Spain itself offers hundreds of both public and private courses for you to enjoy. To find out more about the region and the best courses, keep reading.

Andalusia and Coast Line

Costa del Sol is located in Andalusia and it’s only a 50 minute flight from Madrid. Along this incredible coastline, there are piles of amazing courses. Aside from the golf though, you can enjoy beautiful Spanish towns, hike nearby hills or simply lie by the beach and relax.

Best Gold Courses in the Area

Valderrama isn’t just a difficult course – it’s also hard to obtain a tee time unless you have a lot of advance notice. If you can’t get into Valderamma, you may want to try one of the following other courses or resorts. The Golf Club Marbella was also designed by Robert Trent Jones and is located close by. The Real Club de Golf Las Brisas is historic and gorgeous. The Golf Torrequebrada is tortuous and a course for the truly adventurous.

Other Activities in the Area

Along the fabled coastline, now bursting with hotels, marinas and casinos, there are also many small harbors where boats can be chartered for fishing expeditions and water skiing. Yet if visitors have already found enough water on golf courses, they should consider other diversions, such as excursions to Grenada, Seville and small whitewashed towns in the Sierra Nevadas first settled by the Phoenicians and Romans centuries ago.

But no matter what your pleasure, whether it’s golf, a cultural adventure, or even a short ferry ride to Morocco from the port town of Algeciras – at day’s end, eat and drink heartily, because on the Costa del Sol, particularly at its many beachside restaurants, the no-frills cooking is pescadito sardines and small squid or calamaritos, usually roasted on spits and, best of all, served with famous sweet Malaga wines.

Places to Stay

If you’re looking for a golf hotel, Spain has numerous options. For luxury, try the Marbella Club Hotel. For variety, take in the Atalaya Park Golf Hotel and Resort. For a central location, opt for the La Cala Golf and Spa Resort. And if your heart is set on absolute luxury, try looking into the Fairplay Golf Hotel and Spa, a five star hotel with an award-winning course.

Don’t forget to check out our Golf Gallery for a great selection of golf posters and prints.

The Best Travel Vacation Package

Those with poor planning skills, or a severe shortage of time, often find that a travel vacation is something that works out very well for them. These are often very easy to find, a bit cheaper than putting everything together separately, and make travel much easier. Those with families often love these because there are a lot of family-orientated packages geared towards the whole family. Finding these is easy, but deciding on the right one is a little harder.

Most of the time, a good travel vacation package spells everything out up front for the person buying the trip. That means you will know exactly what you are getting, and how much it is going to cost you. Families should be careful with all-inclusive packages that do not spell things out. Some find that this means that their travel vacation package includes a few meals, but they are on their own for others. It might not cover most taxes either. This is important to find out.

A travel vacation package does not have to be for families though. There are many out there for couples, and some that are just for honeymoons. Before you take one of these, think about what you are getting for the money. My husband and I took one of these for our honeymoon, and chose one due to the price. This was a mistake. Our honeymoon was a nightmare because of it. You will always find a great travel vacation package, but look into it before you commit your money and your time.

There are always extra expenses attached to any travel vacation package, but some deals are better than others. As long as you understand the cost of your travel vacation package, plus taxes, and what expenses might still be added once you arrive, you aren’t going to be caught unaware and under prepared.

There is nothing saying that you can’t ask questions before you accept a travel vacation package. If you don’t have the time to do this, you might want to hire a travel agent to find the best deal for you and to fill you in on the details. You can tell them what you need and what you hope to spend, and they will find the best deal they can. It is also a great idea to check up on any location by looking online for reviews from other travelers. Had I done this, I could have avoided a rather rotten honeymoon.

Don’t forget to browse our fascinating selection of Travel Prints and Posters.

Cruise ships are a fun and engaging way to see numerous ports of call, enjoy a variety of activities and travel through beautiful regions. Cruise ship travel is, by nature, markedly different from any other form of vacation. So, you need to plan accordingly.

From packing to medical considerations, preparing for a cruise vacation goes beyond the basics of swim trunks and guide books. To learn about how best to prepare for a cruise vacation, keep reading for great tips on everything from packing your suitcase to warding off seasickness.

What to Pack on a Cruise Vacation

Ultimately, what you pack is going to depend on your cruise destination. An Alaskan cruise will require different clothing than a Caribbean cruise at the height of summer. That said, don’t let land temperatures fool you.

Particularly during the winter months, some cruises (like those leaving from L.A.) can be quite cold. Regardless of the forecasts on land, always pack a wind-resistant jacket and at least one set of clothes that will allow you comfort up on deck when things get chilly out at sea.

You’ll also need proper identification and proof of purchase to board a cruise ship. These will be required at every port-of-call, so pack your papers (including your health insurance) in a water-resistant envelope that’s small enough to carry with you if you plan to leave the ship.

Medical Considerations

You will most likely need travel health insurance for your next cruise vacation. When purchasing travel insurance, try to find one that’s geared specifically toward cruises and the legal intricacies of international waters.

Secondly, pack any needed medications. You may even want to pack extras or a spare if you intend to go to shore. For example, an asthmatic may want to pack one inhaler to carry in a pocket and another backup inhaler just in case.

Most cruise ships have a medical clinic and doctor or health professional on-board the ship, but this is typically a stopgap measure, not a full-proof backup.

Finally, if you’re prone to motion sickness, you can prepare for your voyage with basic ginger root. An herbal remedy, ginger root has been proven to help with seasickness while avoiding the side effects common with many pharmaceutical motion sickness remedies. Herbalists recommend taking the ginger root starting a few weeks before you actually leave on your cruise.

What You Should Leave Behind

Always leave behind a full travel itinerary and emergency contact information with family and friends. Most cruise lines offer an emergency number that can be used by family and friends in case they need to get in touch with you urgently.

See also our colorful, eye-catching Travel Prints & Posters Gallery.

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