Keeping your travel options open

I don’t know about you, but one of the things I appreciate most about the world today, is the vast array of options that we have, thanks to the internet. Gone are the days of having one family holiday a year. Our grandparents used to book their family holiday in January, and travel in August. Two weeks in Benidorm were the sum total of their travel options for a whole year.

Keeping your travel options open
Keeping your travel options open

Once the choice was made, that was it! Off they went, to the sunny Spanish coast, and they never imagined a day when people could have five, six or more holidays a year. Fortunately, things have moved on since then, and it’s a great advantage to have short and long breaks available all year round.

What about a different starting point?

A great tip is to start from different airport in your own country. You can check out all the possible destinations available, and that might spark some new ideas. You don’t have to move from your desk to do that. There’s a good selection at eDreams and you can play around with different connecting flights to reach pretty much any destination in the world. I bet you will find some fabulous destinations that you haven’t considered before. Just by researching these practical details, you can stumble across some dream locations that are well worth trying out.

Design your own itinerary

For some people, package holidays are ideal. You don’t have to do any planning, and there will be a holiday rep who can take care of all your questions. That’s not the way I like to travel, though. I like to experiment with different modes of transport and choose my own accommodation. It takes a little bit more work in advance, but I know that everything will be chosen with my own personal taste in mind. Usually, I will have a day or two in a restful location, ideally with beach and pool. This will be followed by something active, like rafting or pony trekking. After that, I will choose a final destination that is luxury itself, and I will return home fit, healthy and relaxed.

Holidays where and when you want them

I have never understood why people go back to the same place every year. One of the biggest pleasures of travel today is discovering something new. We all love to go where no blogger has gone before, pushing back the frontiers of travel writing, and coming back to write all about it. I remember going to the coast of Brittany, and looking out to sea, thinking all the while about the huge Atlantic Ocean and the distance from there to America. We are duped into thinking that the world has become smaller, simply because our media give us a window into every corner of the world. It is only when you visit these places of your dreams that you realise just how huge and amazing the world really is.

Choices, choices

It should be quite obvious by now that one of the great delights in life can be weighing up your potential options. Planning future adventures can be almost as much fun as going on the trips themselves! In fact, sometimes you can discover incredible bargains or interesting new ideas when you are busily researching your next trip. Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, you can dream, plan and book, all from the comfort of your own sofa. Speaking of which, it’s time for a coffee and some travel blog surfing. So where shall we head for next …?

Flying With Pets – How Can You Keep Your Pet Safe And Healthy When Traveling On Commercial Airline Flights?


If you are planning to fly with your pet, you are part of a growing trend that has been increasing for the last number of years.  Most airlines, for a nominal fee, will allow your small pet to fly with you if it will fit in a FAA approved pet carrier that can be stowed under your seat.  The following important information can help you keep your pet safe, healthy, and happy on airline flights.

When booking a flight, it is a good idea to make reservations for yourself and your pet as early as possible.  You must let the airline know that you want to bring your pet with you.  It is very important to tell them, as they will only allow a limited number of pets on each flight.  Some airlines do not allow pets at all, especially on international flights.  Always confirm your flight the day before you leave on your trip.   If you are traveling internationally you need to confirm your reservation seventy-two hours before you go.

Before you fly into the wide blue yonder with your furry travel companion, you need to take him or her to the veterinarian for a checkup, to make sure he or she is healthy enough to travel.  You will also need to take its health certificate with you, showing that your pet is up-to-date on all its vaccinations, including rabies.  Your pet must wear its current vaccination tag when traveling.  As well, your pet must meet the health regulations of every country that you will be traveling to.  Bring along a copy of your pet’s medical records listing its allergies, chronic medical conditions, and medications. 

If you haven’t done this already, you should get your pet micro-chipped.  That way, if your pet gets lost and is taken to an animal shelter or vet, where its chip can be scanned, you both can be reunited.  Keep in mind that your pet’s identification tag will have your home address and phone number on it.  That won’t be of much help if your pet is lost while you are on vacation.  It may be a good idea to get another tag made up with your destination address and phone number on it.  What happens if you pet isn’t found until after you have returned from your vacation?  It makes sense that you should leave both your home I.D. tag on your pet as well as attaching the new tag.  That way you have all bases covered and stand a better chance of being reunited with your pet.
You should carry a photo of you pet with you when you’re traveling.  It will help you prove that you are the rightful owner if any problems of ownership occur.  Also, the photo can be used to make up flyers to post in the area where your pet was lost.

Flying with pets that are too large to fit into a FAA approved pet carrier is not advisable as they will have to be stowed in the cargo hold.  Putting your pet in the cargo hold can be traumatic and dangerous to your pet’s health.    It would make far more sense to leave your pet with friends,
or a pet sitting service for the duration of your vacation. 
The American Veterinary Medical Association advises against sedating or tranquilizing your pet when flying, especially dogs.  Dogs regulate their body temperature by panting, so if they are tranquilized, they may not be able to pant.  If this happens, it can leave them defenseless against the fluctuation of temperature and air pressure that occurs in the cargo hold of every flight.  Also, keep in mind that pets don’t enjoy flying, or being stuffed into a cramped kennel and left alone in a dark and desolate cargo hold.  It must be terrifying for them.

There are a number of websites that give additional valuable information regarding traveling with your pet.  Two outstanding sites are the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) at, and the Federal Government’s Department of Agriculture at, which has an excellent article entitled, Traveling With Your Pet.  


If you want a great travel carrier for your small pet, you may want to consider the popular, FAA approved pet carrier, Sherpa On Wheels.  This Cadillac of pet carriers can be a luxurious and  comfortable home for your pet while flying.   It has the convenience of a front and top entry, mesh ventilation panels, recessed wheels, as well as a detachable pull handle and a shoulder strap.  It is available on line at

 Dorothy Yamich has a passion for travel. She has lived and traveled extensively throughout Europe as well as traveled in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.  She is a travel consultant and specializes in luxury cruises as well as vacation packages.  If you are looking for information on cheap airfares, fabulous discounted luxury cruises and great holiday deals, visit:

Cheap Hotels and Motels

One of our first thoughts when looking at our next trip, how to get cheap tickets and how to get cheap hotel / motel rates?

Well, may not be the first thought, in fact the very first thought could go to the business meeting we are going to take part to with an important customer or it could go to the great beaches we will find just in front of our hotel resort.

But as anybody else we do not want to spend more than it is required, right? So let’s talk about cheap and discount rates we can find for hotels and motels – that’s because I am good at this subject.

There are a number of places we would look for cheap rates, anyone has his own preferred places but let’s do not forget about the major ones as,,,, I always start from one of them to find cheap hotel rates.

Where do we go? Houston! Largest City of Texas and a major one in the United States. Students will travel there for the many universities and colleges such as the University of Houston, the University of Texas-Houston Health and Science Center, Texas Southern University and Rice University. Some will travel for business and most likely having to do with one of the major industries there: Oil and Natural Gas or the space and aeronautics industry.

Let’s assume we are looking for the best price for a cheap hotel in Houston and do not have flexible dates, we will be there for a 2 day business trip!

Assuming a check in date 22 December and a check out date 24 December we go through the results to find a few offers as:

– Book now and save 30%! at Lancaster Hotel a 4 star in Texas Avenue

– Weekend and holiday rates at Four Seasons Houston, a five star downtown Houston

– Book now and save 20% at Hilton Americas Houston, a four star downtown Houston.

This is just a sample of the many hotel deals found for this short stay but try to change the dates or to make a longer stay and the rates will undoubtely be better and lower.

Bavaria, the Beer and the Oktoberfest

Bavaria is a tourist region and a state of Germany located in the south east of the country bordering Austria and the Czech Republic. Thousands of people visit its beautiful mountains and lake each year. The largest federal state is rich in natural resources includes snowy Alpine peaks, rushing streams, and velvety forests. It is also filled with historical sites, beautiful baroque churches, romantic castles, and world class museums.

Bavaria hosts the world’s most famous festival where million of visitors come across the globe to celebrate Oktoberfest. It is a glorious beer celebration every autumn from late September until early October. You can explore the famous tourist destinations in Bavaria:

The famous castles like Neuschwanstein Castle, Herrenchiemsee Castle, Linderhof Castle, and Schleissheim Palace. Neuschwanstein Castle lies in Southern Bavaria, a fairy tale castle with a breathtaking setting.  Herrenchiemsee is second unfinished castle of Ludwig with an exquisite lake Chiemsee. Linderhof Castle is the smallest of the three castles built by King Ludwig II of Bavaria and the park was one of the most beautiful creations of historicist garden design. Schleissheim Palace is a baroque palace complex consisting of three palaces with a huge garden in North of Munich.

The great natural scenery in Bavaria includes Zugspitze, and Konigsee. Zugspitze is Germany’s highest mountain with amazing views from the top. Konigsee is the deepest and cleanest lake in the Alps near Berchtesgaden.

The famous churches and monasteries Bavaria features are Andechs Monastery, Benedictine Monastery, St. John Baptist Church in Steingaden, and Wieskirche Church. Andechs Monastery is famous for its beer. Wieskirche Church is a UNESCO world heritage site and the most charming rococo church in the state of Bavaria.

There are great deals and quality vacation rentals in Bavaria (Ferienwohnungen) including homes, villas, condos, apartments, cottages, cabins, and bed and breakfast that you can rent for a couple of days. There are numerous Bavaria vacation rentals that present a candid photo, detailed description, availability, location, and price rate. There are sites which allows you to connect directly to home owners where you can negotiate good deal. Just make a quick search on Google for “Ferienwohnungen in Deutschland” and you will find wonderful accommodations like the Pension Hegger, Haus Berggruß or Ferienpark-Frye.

Can Serious Danger Lurk Under The Sun On Your Tropical Vacation?

Even though these sun related problems, sunburn, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke, are not diseases, they can be very serious and could put a real damper on your holidays.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when dealing with the sun.  Keep in mind that the sun’s rays are more intense between noon and three p.m. in the tropics and at high altitudes, even if it’s a cloudy or overcast day.     

What can you do to prevent getting a sunburn when you travel to sunny holiday destinations?

In general, the fairer or lighter your skin is, the easier you may sunburn.  Even clouds offer little or no protection from a severe sunburn.  So why take a chance of ruining your holiday when getting a painful sunburn is easy to protect against?  To prevent getting a bad sunburn, especially if you sunburn easily, use a high SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of 30, or stronger if possible.  Use the sunscreen liberally, wear a wide-brimmed sun hat, choose UVA and UVB protection certified sunglasses, and wear a long-sleeved shirt and slacks.  Try to stay out of the sun between noon and three in the afternoon.  Build up your exposure to the sun gradually, day by day.  Limit the length of time that you spend in the sun to about fifteen minutes the first day, and increase your time in the sun gradually on subsequent days.   
What can you do to treat a severe sunburn?

You can ease the pain of a sunburn by soaking in a cool bath three to four times a day.  If you add some baking soda to each bath, it will help even more.  Cool showers will probably hurt too much, and they are not as effective or soothing as cool, relaxing baths.  To help with headaches, or pain and swelling, take aspirin or other pain medication such as Advil or Ibuprofen.  Do not take any aspirin based pain medications if you are on blood thinners or have an ulcer. If you are not sure if it’s safe for you to take these pain relievers, check with a doctor or medical clinic.  To avoid dehydration, drink at least six to eight glasses of water per day.  Do not break any blisters if you can help it.  Broken blisters can easily get infected, especially in the humid weather of the tropics.  If they do break, wash them gently with soap and warm water. 
If your sunburn does not appear to be getting better and you still have pain after a couple of days, you develop a high temperature or fever, have a splitting headache that won’t go away, are vomiting or have diarrhea, feel dizzy or confused, or your eyes hurt and light bothers them, you must seek medical attention immediately.

What can you do to prevent heat exhaustion?

Heat exhaustion is completely preventable.  Wearing a wide-brimmed sunhat, drinking lots of liquids, and staying out of intense heat and humidity will help you avoid this serious problem.

What should you do if you have the symptoms of heat exhaustion?

Heat exhaustion is caused by a combination of very high temperatures and humidity.  This may result in the loss of fluids from your body through excess sweating.  These fluids must be quickly replaced or heat exhaustion can result.

The symptoms include headache, fatigue, lethargy, giddiness, and muscle cramps.  The treatment is to immediately move out of the sun or heat and drink plenty of liquids, preferably commercial beverages containing electrolytes, such as Gatorade.  Do not drink any alcohol as this will make your condition worse. 

If you do not feel better and show positive signs of recovery within a very short period of time, have someone help you get to a hospital immediately as your condition could easily progress into a true medical emergency called heatstroke.

What actions must you immediately take if you get heat stroke?

When heat exhaustion is not successfully treated immediately, it can result in a very serious medical emergency.  Heatstroke is characterized by high body temperatures of 102 to 106 degrees Fahrenheit, or 39 to 41 degrees Centigrade.  There is also a cessation of sweating.  The symptoms of heatstroke include flushed, red skin, headache and confusion which can progress into delirium and convulsions, and can be fatal.

Note:  Someone must help you by quickly taking you out of the sun or heat and rushing you to a hospital immediately.

Dorothy Yamich has a passion for travel. She has lived and traveled extensively throughout Europe as well as traveled in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.  She is a travel consultant and specializes in luxury cruises as well as vacation packages.  if you are looking for information on cheap airfares, fabulous discounted luxury cruises and great holiday deals, visit:  

Free Guidebook to Lanzarote Out Now

Despite the credit crunch and weak state of sterling the holiday island of Lanzarote still expects to welcome well over one million tourists this year. The bulk of them from the UK and Eire.  And anyone planning to visit Lanzarote this summer can now get their hands on a comprehensive 96 page guide to the island – entirely free of charge.

Lanzarote Guidebook has been created by long term island residents in order to provide visitors with accurate and up to date information about the Island of Fire.  Along with plenty of inside tips about the best places to go and things to see and do.

The Summer 2009 edition features 96 pages – illustrated with some fantastic visuals – and is packed with useful information for tourists.  Which can be downloaded fast and for free at the Lanzarote Guidebook website.

Lanzarote Guidebook contains comprehensive information about all of the island’s resorts, towns and places.  Including maps for each resort. Along with coverage of all of Lanzarote´s many attractions.  Such as the Timanfaya Volcano Park and the Jameos del Agua.

Discover the work of César Manrique – the island born artist and architect who campaigned for the controlled development of tourism on the island. Find out more about upcoming events this summer – such as the Jazz Canarias Festival and the fiesta of Nuestra Señora del Carmen. 

For those who like to explore and enjoy days out Lanzarote Guidebook also features an overview of the islands most breathtaking beaches and information about the best excursions on the island.  Including kayak tours, catamaran trips and submarine voyages.

Lanzarote Guidebook also contains a handy Essentials section.  Which covers all of the holiday nitty gritty such as bank opening times, hiring a car, driving on the island, duty free allowances, shop opening hours and a list of emergency contact numbers.

This indispensable guide is published in a handy and portable A5 format and is distributed free to tourists on the island via car hire companies, hotels, tourist information offices and private villas.

Visitors to the Lanzarote Guidebook website will also find even more in-depth and detailed information about the island online.  They can catch up on all of the latest island news, check live weather reports and use in-depth climate information to work out when best to visit.  Whilst browsing one of the best selections of Lanzarote apartments and villas online

Hot Holidays in Costa Teguise

As a planned holiday resort Costa Teguise in Lanzarote revolves around the lovely beach of Las Cucharas. This includes the replica fishing village, the Pueblo Marinero, designed by the famous island-born architect César Manrique and which consists of pretty white-washed squares and narrow streets.

Costa Teguise is also a great base for visitors who wish to explore the northern half of the island, as it is only a short drive from some of the most spectacular attractions to be found on Lanzarote.

Getting There

The resort is a fifteen minute drive from the airport and is situated on the further side of the capital Arrecife. Although there is no bus service running between the airport and Costa Teguise, it is relatively easy and not expensive to get there. A taxi drive would normally cost around €15, whilst a hire car may prove the cheapest option for those who intend to go exploring during their holiday.

Several car hire companies have offices in the arrivals lounge at the airport, making the transfer to your accommodation much easier. On leaving the airport, drivers should choose the Arrecife exit, following the dual carriageway until the left exit marked ‘Circunvalacion’. This is the ring road which runs outside the capital and quickly transports you to the resort of Costa Teguise.


Costa Teguise boasts one of the best selections of holiday villas and apartments in Lanzarote.  Many of which command great locations, with direct access to the seafront promenade and local beaches.


There are five beaches in total in Costa Teguise. Besides the main beach at Las Cucharas, there is a small beach, Playa Jablillo, in front of the hotel Teguise Playa, whilst a little further in the direction of Arrecife is Playa Bastian. Two much smaller beaches can be found at either end of the resort, Playa de los Charcos to the north and Playa del Ancla to the south. Las Cucharas is a particularly good beach for small children, as it gently slopes into the sea and generally has very small waves.

Things to Do

Anyone who visits Playa Las Cucharas will observe windsurfers getting in and out of the water. This is one of the best places to practice the sport as the enclosed bay usually has a prevailing breeze from the north-west, making ideal weather conditions for windsurfing.

Costa Teguise is also home to the island’s only water park, which is full of chutes and slides. And a little further inland, visitors will find the island’s second golf course. On the other side of town, a recently opened aquarium houses numerous examples of local fish.


Many of the resort’s restaurants can be found in the Pueblo Marinero, although two notable exceptions, that offer excellent food all round are Meson La Jordana, situated in Calle Los Geranios and Oscars, which is just after the Las Coronas Playa Hotel. 

Hot Holidays in Puerto del Carmen

After Catalonia the Canaries are Spain’s most popular holiday destination.  Attracting over nine million visitors during the course of last year alone.  Thanks to the fact that the Islands boast a great climate all year round – and are home to some magnificent beaches.

Lanzarote is the most easterly link in this chain and remains one of the least spoiled of the larger islands.  Tourism first really took off here during the 1970´s in what was once a small fishing village called La Tiñosa.  Which has rapidly evolved over the last forty years to become the busiest resort on the island – Puerto del Carmen.

Much of the secret of Puerto del Carmen’s success as a holiday destination lies in the fact that the resort is located within a sheltered bay and is blessed with great (if man made) beaches.  With golden grains imported from the nearby Sahara desert.

The most impressive of these are the huge stretch of sand at Los Pocillos and the main hub of the resort – Playa Grande.  But there are a number of smaller and more intimate beaches for visitors to explore.  Such as the small bay at Playa Chica – which is protected by a barrier of volcanic rocks, making it ideal for snorkelling and scuba diving.  And Playa Fariones – which is located just in front of the Los Fariones – one of the most popular hotels in Lanzarote.

Since the resort started to grow during the 1970s it has become divided into two distinct zones.  The Old Town – which is located around the harbour area and which is predomiantly residential.  And the New Town – which runs parallel with Playa Grande and which caters more to tourists. 

There are only two main hotels in the resort.  So the majority of visitors opt for self catering accommodation.  The best selection of villas in Puerto del Carmen can be found in and around the Los Mojones area – which is about ten minutes walk from the Old Town harbour.  Whilst there are a host of apartment complexes to choose from in the New Town area for those on more of a budget.

Puerto del Carmen offers plenty for holiday makers to do beyond just relaxing on the beach.  A new golf course has just opened on the outskirts of town.  Whilst boat trips run throughout the day from the harbour area.  Children will also be entranced by the zoo and theme park at Rancho Texas – the largest attraction of its kind on Lanzarote.

What Can Women Do To Avoid Sexual Harassment When They Travel On Vacation?



The women of today are venturing out and traveling more globally then at any time in history. Female travelers, whether traveling alone, with a companion, or as a group, are encountering different cultures, religions, and societies.  With this freedom comes some significant risks that men may never encounter.  It is therefore prudent for women who plan to travel to learn how to handle themselves when on holiday, studying abroad, or traveling on business. 

What are some things you can do that may help you have a safer and more enjoyable travel experience? 
If you are traveling, or on vacation, your best protection is to understand the local culture and customs of the country you are visiting.  What you observe when you watch how the local women behave and dress will give you valuable clues on how to avoid sexual harassment.
If the local women cover their hair and their arms and legs then you should do that also.  Do  not  wear bikinis, swimsuits, or short shorts in towns where local women are all covered up.  Dress conservatively.

Avoid direct eye contact with men as they might construe this as flirtatious.  Do not talk, smile, or wave to strange men who smile or say hello to you.  If a man follows you, cross the street.  If this doesn’t work, find a policeman, or enter a store and ask for help. 

If you need to ask for directions, always ask a woman.  And, if you are traveling by bus or train,
always sit with other women.

It is a good idea to carry a versatile head scarf in your handbag just in case you need to cover your head and arms.

You may want to wear a fake wedding ring to help ward off and discourage any unwanted male advances if you are not married.

You should wear a referee’s whistle around your neck under your blouse.  It could come in handy.

Consult guide books on the countries and areas that you are traveling to or through to give you a heads up on what to expect.  Also, carry a foreign language phrase book with you to help you communicate with people when you get there.

Do not wear expensive looking jewelry, watches, camera carrying cases, or even designer handbags.  You don’t want to tempt any would be robbers or muggers.  Take a conservative outfit along with you in case you need to wear one on certain occasions.
If you are traveling alone, it is best to travel light.  For one thing you will be more mobile because you aren’t loaded down with luggage.   If it’s not too small for your belongings, a wheeled, carry-on bag, or a backpack may be you best bet.  It is important to try and have one hand free at all times.  Having two hands free is even better.  You should wear a shoulder bag that has a strong, wide strap that will fit over your head.  Wearing the shoulder bag this way may help prevent someone from grabbing the bag and running away with it.   The bag should also have secure, zippered pockets.


Dorothy Yamich has a passion for travel. She has lived and traveled extensively throughout Europe as well as traveled in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.  She is a travel consultant and specializes in luxury cruises as well as vacation packages.  if you are looking for information on cheap airfares, fabulous discounted luxury cruises and great holiday deals, visit: