It’s not surprising to hear that global prices for hotels have risen 5 percent in 2012, from the year before. But there are cities where average prices actually went down. Now when you visit a world-class city, you can stay in a 5 star hotel for less then $200-sometimes considerably less. We teamed up with Hotels.com, which just put out its Hotels.com Hotel Price Index, to find the most luxurious properties without breaking the bank. [Read more...]
How to explain the difference a beachfront hotel makes? “More than unobstructed views, it’s about the freedom of not having to look both ways to cross the street before feeling sand between your toes,” says Matt Thomson, founder of Wavecation.com, a surfing-focused vacation rental company. Here are the top 5 beach hotels in the world: [Read more...]
Money’s worth nothing, until you spend it. That’s the philosophy behind all extravagant luxury goods, and nothing says “senseless overspending” like blowing thousands on a place to sleep, shower and store your clothes while you go about your day. For anyone with a few hundred thousand to squander, this is a to-do list. For the rest of us, it’s a can’t-do, won’t-do, don’t-even-want-to-do list. [Read more...]
Nowhere in the world is as densely populated with rich and distinct cultures as the European continent. In all of Europe, you’ll find countless cities brimming with culture and charm, each with its own unique history and identity. While the possibilities for adventure are endless, here’s just one route you might take on a trans-Europe trip. [Read more...]
Sweep your sweetheart off his or her feet to one of these 5 swoon-worthy destinations, full of history and superstitions. Just be sure to take someone you really love—according to legend, kiss in a few of these spots, and you’ll be stuck together forever! [Read more...]
When you want to get away from it all, set your course for these romantic islands, as chosen by Travel + Leisure readers. From the Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean, they share the powerful ingredient of fantasy. There’s nothing like escaping to an island with your loved one to bring out starry eyes in the most jaded traveler. Discover the getaway escape that’s right for you two castaways among these top islands for romance. [Read more...]
Snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, snowboarding in Aspen, bicycling in the Alps, safari in Tanzania. Yawn. Millions been there, millions done that. To some people, alternative actually means alternative. That’s what makes this collection of activities in offbeat locales weird. And special. But mostly weird. [Read more...]
We love to write about food. We love to celebrate the good stuff and lambaste the bad. But there’s a debate we’ve avoided, if only to save computer screens the world over from the liters of spittle that will fly from the mouths of irate readers as they vent incredulously about our “ignorant, biased, un-researched and unreasoned” choices. But it’s time to find out once and for all, which cuisine is king. [Read more...]
In recent years, many monasteries and convents have been reborn as hotels so luxuriously appointed that you might confess to feeling a little guilty about how their previous occupants had to live. Here’s our list of some choice and unusual properties to select from, but there are plenty of others you’ll find in your own travels. [Read more...]
Europe is full of under-the-radar gems — from Eastern Europe’s hippest art scene to a sleepy district of lakes and castles. It takes extra effort, sure, to reach these European spots, but the reward comes with that sense of being let in on a fantastic secret — and the opportunity to experience a place rooted in local tradition before it’s really discovered and altered. [Read more...]
Thinking about hitting the road on your next vacation? We spanned the globe and found five destinations that are a delight to drive, from shiny European superhighways to some of the finest roads in the Americas. So, whichever direction you’re headed in, buckle up and have a safe trip.
An ideal choice for first-time driving outside the U.S., our neighbor to the north drives on the same side of the road as we do and road signage is in English in 12 of Canada’s 13 provinces and territories. The exception to this is the staunchly French-speaking province of Quebec, where other than some bilingual signs in Montreal, road signs are exclusively in French. Just remember that road signs are in kilometers, not miles.
Manarola is the oldest of the Italian towns known as the Cinque Terr — the Five Lands along the country’s northwestern coast that cling, lichen-like, to the rugged rocks above the Ligurian Sea. The sea’s rich blues complement the sunset-colored shops and Genovese-style tower homes of Manarola with panache, and the buildings appear almost cultivated, like a flower garden tucked into the craggy slopes. Particularly stunning is the vista from the narrow rock ledge across the harbor at Punto Bonfiglio, when the retiring sun deepens and perfects the town’s palette. [Read more...]
The falling euro is good news for international tourists visiting countries such as Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Ireland. Although airfares are still expensive (due largely to high fuel costs), once you reach your destination, local prices will be lower across the board than they have been in the past.
Tour operators and economists recommend that travellers visiting Greece should take extra cash in euros, just in case the country leaves the eurozone and returns to the drachma in an effort to regain control of its currency. Travellers concerned about a “grexit”, a potential exit from the euro, could also consider purchasing all-inclusive, pre-paid trips to Greece.
According to a 2012 report by the UK Post Office, Spain is currently the least expensive eurozone destination for a resort vacation, followed by Portugal.
With riots breaking out in Athens, it is no surprise that tourism is declining in Greece. Although the country usually receives most of its visitors from Germany, tensions over austerity measures are keeping German tourists away. In Spain, protests have been held in Madrid and other major cities.
The upside of economic turmoil in Europe, though, is that many tourist attractions — including beaches, monuments and museums — are becoming less crowded. And with fewer travellers, many European cruises are discounting their prices, especially in the Mediterranean.
Are you willing to visit these European countries inspite of the ongoing recession? Share your thoughts with us!
Source: BBC Travel