A Journey of Discovery THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO Off the Beaten Track AMAZING ALBANIA Europeâ€™s Most INSTAGRAMABLE CASTLES
THE BEST SPRING VACATIONS BEGIN RIGHT HERE. Are you ready? Meet diverse people while you journey on the Camino de Santiago, explore the grounds where Julius Ceasar and Augustus walked or liven up your social media with historic castles. Let the inspiration bloom as you flip through the pages of this Spring edition of VacationsÂŽ magazine, and start dreaming about your next getaway today.
RUINS OF BERAT CASTLE IN ALBANIA
Editor’s Letter Welcome to this edition of Ensemble Vacations®, the first of 2020.
Also, look for exceptional foodie experiences in Los Cabos and a mini guide to some of the hottest spots to enjoy the culinary mecca of Copenhagen. Beyond adventure and culinary inspiration, our writers introduce you to cultural experiences for families, or regions with Old World grandeur and charm, as well as fascinating World Heritage sites to explore in the Baltics by cruise.
Karen Leiva firstname.lastname@example.org
12 HOT LIST Thrilling Caribbean Getaways 14
CHÂTEAU DE CHAMBORD, FRANCE
Regardless of your goals and dreams for 2020, these travel experiences aim to inspire you to make your own lifelong memories. When you are ready, call our travel advisors to start planning your next vacation. Happy travels,
10 SPOTLIGHT Amazing Albania
With a new year – an important one marking the start of a new decade – many of you may have made resolutions to see more of the world, explore new cultures, or experience something new altogether. Perhaps you’re looking to top off your bucket list or want opportunities to incorporate wellness into your travels. Whether it’s fitness, relaxation, or awe-inspiring experiences, we hope to inspire you with this magazine. If adventure is high on your list, look for a special section on exciting ways to travel in Sweden, Spain, and Japan. In one story, our writer takes us on a journey that has been undertaken for 11 centuries – a hike or pilgrimage of the Camino de Santiago in Spain. Also in Europe, learn more about the Nordic wilderness, prime for hiking, kayaking, and day-tripping. For a wintery activity, be inspired by our writer who straps on a pair of snowshoes and treks through Hokkaido’s highest mountain in Japan.
GREAT GREEN MACAWS IN COSTA RICA
TRAVEL NEWS What to Look for in 2020 and Beyond
PACKING LIST Zero-Waste Travel Essentials
Europe’s Most Instagrammable Castles
Travel With Purpose Rethinking the Tropics: The Eco-Experience
Vacation Rx in the Wellness Valley
SOFT ADVENTURE 32
Finding the Good Way on the Camino de Santiago
Snowshoeing on Hokkaido’s Highest Mountain
ULTIMATE FAMILY VACATIONS 46
Cultural Experiences for Families in Europe
Vacations® is proud to be NATJA’s (North American Travel Journalists Association) 2017 Gold Award Winner in the Travel Magazine category.
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28 FAENZA VINEYARDS
The World’s Oldest Wine Regions
Copenhagen: Culinary Mecca
Five Fabulous Culinary Experiences in Los Cabos
CRUISE VACATIONS 64
World’s Best Jazz Festivals Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 5
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA CATHEDRAL ON THE MAGNIFICENT PRAZA DO OBRADOIRO, SPAIN ©GADVENTURES
TARA NOLAN Tara Nolan is a freelance journalist based in Dundas, Ontario. Her byline has appeared in CBC Life, the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, The Guardian, CAA magazine and Canadian Cycling, among others. An avid mountain biker (and fan of alliteration), many of Tara’s travel adventures are on two wheels, but she’s also happy roaming around cities and hiking challenging trail networks. Tara is also a co-owner of the award-winning website Savvy Gardening, and her second book, Gardening Your Front Yard, will be published in March 2020 by Cool Springs Press.
SUZANNE MORPHET Suzanne Morphet writes exclusively about travel. She focuses on active outdoor adventures from climbing via ferrata in the Dolomites and staying in rustic Italian mountain huts, to snorkelling in the Seychelles with its luxury hotels. She launched her journalism career as a reporter with CBC Radio News and for the last decade has freelanced as a travel writer and photographer. She’s based in North Saanich, BC, where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle recently holidayed. Suzanne wrote about the rural municipality for The Globe and Mail, giving readers the scoop on how and where to vacation in Canada like the Royals.
32 HÖGA KUSTEN, SWEDEN
42 CHEF’S TABLE, AGUA RESTAURANT ©ONE&ONLY PALMILLA
Spring 2020 Credits PUBLISHER Ensemble Travel® Group MANAGING EDITOR & ADVERTISING Ingrid Lopez EDITOR Karen Leiva COPY EDITOR Isabelle Labrosse CONTRIBUTORS Maria-Teresa Andreacchi Lola Augustine Brown Tim Johnson Isabelle Labrosse Lesley Miskell Suzanne Morphet Don Nichols
Tara Nolan Debbie Olsen Miriam Porter Chris Robinson Mark Sissons Diane Tierney Doug Wallace
CREATIVE DIRECTION Ingrid Lopez CREATIVE DESIGNERS Cherry Ann Valles, Cinzia Cammisa FOXX Advertising & Design Inc. PRODUCTION MANAGEMENT Joe Viecili, Dalia Shamkhani FOXX Advertising & Design Inc. INSERT CO-ORDINATION Ingrid Lopez PRINT MANAGEMENT Solisco – Creativity in Printing ADMINISTRATION Lesley Miskell PRODUCTION SERVICES Andy Thomas - TURN KEY Marketing Solutions Inc.
MIRIAM PORTER Miriam Porter is an award-winning Canadian journalist with thousands of published articles. She writes about travel, social justice issues, and veganism. Her articles have been published in The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Eater, Travel + Leisure, Fodor’s Travel, Forbes, Today’s Parent Magazine, The Toronto Star, Sierra Magazine, and many more. She loves learning about cultures around the world from people that live there and meeting animals in the wild. She has lived in New York City and Los Angeles and currently resides in Toronto with her son and rescued furry friends. She speaks up for those that have no voice.
56 CHURCH OF THE SAVIOR ON SPILLED BLOOD ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA
6 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
ENSEMBLE TRAVEL® GROUP VICE PRESIDENT MARKETING DIRECTOR OF MARKETING
Carl Schmitt Franca Iuele
Spring Vacations 2020 Ensemble Travel® Group. Ensemble Vacations®, Ensemble® Experiences, Ensemble® Exclusive, Ensemble® Hosted Cruises, Ensemble® Villas & Vacation Homes, Ensemble® On Location and Ensemble® Hotel & Resort Collection are all proprietary trademarks of Ensemble Travel® Group. No part of this publication may be reprinted or otherwise duplicated without written permission of the publisher. Ensemble Vacations® is published four times per year on behalf of Ensemble Travel® Group member agencies.
DEBBIE OLSEN Debbie Olsen is the original wander woman. Her globetrotting adventures include such activities as cycling in Spain, sailing a yacht through the Whitsunday Islands in Australia, photographing polar bears in Manitoba, snorkelling with whale sharks in Mexico and chasing the Northern Lights in the Yukon. She has contributed to 10 Fodor’s guidebooks and is a Globe and Mail bestselling author. Her articles have been published by numerous outlets including BBC Travel, Canadian Geographic, TravelAge West and the Calgary Herald. Follow her adventures at wanderwoman.ca.
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TICO #50022140 Registration Numbers: vary by agency; see back cover Publication mail agreement: No. 40005027 Printed in Canada. Cover image: Getty Images ©Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela Photos by Getty Images unless stated otherwise. Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 7
14-Day Great Alaskan Explorer
12-Day Ancient Empires
Roundtrip Vancouver Maasdam | Sep 7, 2020 Taxes, fees and port expenses of CAD $508 are included
Roundtrip Barcelona Nieuw Amsterdam | Oct 25, 2020 Taxes, fees and port expenses of CAD $241 included
Exclusive amenity: US$75 onboard spending money per stateroom! OCEAN-VIEW FROM
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Fares are based on Promo LG. Featured fares are per person based on double occupancy, cruise or Land+Sea Journeys only. Fares are in Canadian dollars. All savings amounts are included in the fares shown. Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses are included and range from CAD $241 to CAD $508. Subject to availability. For more information about our stateroom 8 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
EMBRACE THE ADVENTURE, ON BOARD AND ASHORE Experience the majestic beauty of Alaska—from Misty Fiords to the Hubbard Glacier. Or step back into the ancient world of Athens; Olympia and Ephesus. Then continue your explorations on board, with our engaging enrichment programs, inspired cuisine and the best live music at sea, on a Holland America Line cruise.
categories and suite descriptions, and to view deck plans and for full terms and conditions applicable to your cruise, please contact your travel advisor. Offers have limited space and may be modified or withdrawn without prior notice. Other restrictions may apply. Ships’ Registry: The Netherlands. Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 9
SPOTLIGHT Amazing Albania By Chris Robinson
Albania, perhaps Europe’s least-known country, is opening like a flower to welcome adventurous travellers and cruise ship passengers. Beat the crowds, before it becomes the next trendy European destination hot spot.
RUINS OF BERAT CASTLE IN ALBANIA
Albania is tucked between Greece, Italy and the Balkans, with the shores of the Adriatic Sea on one side and ringed by mountains on the other. I had long wanted to visit the land whose symbol is the double-headed eagle. Now here I was, standing amongst the enigmatic ruins of Byllis, an ancient mountaintop town built amidst spectacular views to distant peaks and misty valleys below. The golden sunlight on the stone columns suddenly disappeared as a dramatic Illyrian storm swept in and lightning bolts crashed all around. The gods were throwing their weight around! I retired with my guide, Nesti, to a nearby mountain inn to feast on local produce as the world outside disappeared into the storm. UNEXPECTED DELIGHTS The food everywhere in Albania is an unexpected delight. Because of isolation and economic impoverishment in the last century, the country’s agriculture was not transformed by fertilizers and pesticides. The countryside is full of bees and birdsong, flowers and meadows. And, in turn, the farm-to-table food is generally organic and full of flavours that remind you of how food used to taste. It is also, like everything else in Albania, remarkably good value. A STORIED HISTORY History is writ large in Albania, ruled by kings, princes, emperors, dictators – the evidence is everywhere, but gloriously uncluttered by crowds. I stood alone in the great Roman amphitheatre in Durrës which, anywhere else, would have been packed. There were perhaps half a dozen other visitors in the UNESCO World Heritage nominated site of Apollonia, where Julius Caesar and Augustus once trod. And, in the living museum that is the hilltop fortress city of Berat (another UNESCO World Heritage site), I strode the ancient battlements alone as the sun set and the lights of the medieval hostelries glinted invitingly. UNSPOILED COAST The Adriatic coastline boasts undiscovered jewels of beaches and rocky coves. In Greece and Croatia, on either side, such delights are developed resorts. Here in Albania, most remain almost untouched save for local restaurants and small-scale accommodations. At the Cape of Rodon, a little north of Durrës, my guide took me to a glorious beach of packed golden sand and crystal waters that was almost deserted except for the local fisherman (who also served up the freshest fish imaginable). Further south, lucky cruise ship passengers can explore the beautiful beaches of what has been christened the Albanian Riviera. ® ALBANIA’S COAST 10 • ADRIATIC Vacations •
RUINS OF ANCIENT BYLLIS, ALBANIA
EXPLORING ALBANIA’S MOUNTAINS Perhaps the greatest attraction of all, however – more than the pleasures of the gorgeous beaches, the city sights of the capital Tirana, and the many stunning archeological and historical wonders – are the mountains that make up much of the country. I drove the tiny winding roads up into Shebenik-Jabllanicë National Park near the border with North Macedonia. It’s a world of simple and pristine beauty that is very hard to find these days. After a magnificent guided hike on which we saw not another soul, we descended to a tiny mountain village surrounded by alpine flowers and pastures and enjoyed a dish of local lamb cooked overnight in a milk churn. Our lively meal was punctuated by spontaneous dances with some local schoolteachers on an outing to celebrate the end of term. As my guide rightly said, “This is what makes my country so special.” Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 11
HOT LIST Thrilling Caribbean Getaways By Don Nichols
Yes, glorious white-sand beaches lure throngs of visitors to the many postcard-perfect islands strewn throughout the Caribbean; but, for those sunseekers who want to do more than just chill on an idyllic beach, amazing adventures guaranteed to get the adrenalin pumping await. To get your juices flowing, put these five thrills on your must-do list.
KITEBOARDING IN BONAIRE
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: HAVE A WHALE OF A TIME Every year, from January through April, up to 7,000 humpback whales migrate from northern Atlantic to the waters off the north coast of the Dominican Republic to mate and nurse newborn calves. In the Silver Bank sanctuary, about 130 kilometres off Puerto Plata, nature-lovers can do something especially exhilarating: swim and dive with these giant creatures. Three local operators offer these day tours from just outside Puerto Plata. Up to 2,000 of these humpbacks also spend time in Samaná Bay on the northeastern coast. Whale-watching expeditions (but with no in-water encounters) leave from Santa Bárbara de Samaná. From land, the curious can watch the whales at the Punta Balandra Observatory, about 14 kilometres northeast of Santa Bárbara. ST. LUCIA: CHALLENGE YOURSELF WITH A HIGH ADVENTURE St. Lucia’s two pitons – Gros Piton and Petit Piton – are attention-grabbers. But if you want to test yourself, do more than look at these natural wonders. Lace up your hiking boots and ascend Gros Piton (hikes up Petit Piton aren’t government-sanctioned because it’s steeper and more difficult to navigate). Using a guide is recommended, and you can find one in the towns of Soufrière or Fond Gens Libre, where an interpretive centre will orient you to the trek ahead. Start early in the morning because the hike, each way, takes three to six hours, depending on your physical ability. The sweat you’ll likely work up is a small price to pay for the jaw-dropping views from the top. BELIZE: TAKE A DEEP DIVE Considered one of the world’s best dives, the Great Blue Hole is found more than 70 kilometres off the coast of Belize City, near the centre of the Belize Lighthouse Reef, the largest reef system in the northern hemisphere. By no means an easy underwater adventure, it’s best explored by experienced divers or resort-certified divers with enough training. Views of large stalactites and stalagmites reward those who take the plunge into its depths. Its marine residents, including giant groupers and sharks, add to the dive’s appeal.
THE BLUE HOLE IN BELIZE
BONAIRE: SOAR ACROSS THE WATER On this Dutch island, consistent offshore winds blow at an average of 17 to 22 knots nearly year-round, making the isle a prime location for kiteboarding. The fast-paced action takes place at Atlantis Beach on the isle’s southern tip where flat, warm, and crystal-clear water makes the fun suitable for all levels, with supervision. With a wide bay, there’s plenty of room for newbies to try their hand at the sport, and for the experienced to learn new tricks. Local kiteboarding companies offer lessons and equipment rentals. 12 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
SWIMMING WITH HUMPBACK WHALES ©DON NICHOLS
TURKS & CAICOS: SEE AN ENDANGERED SPECIES Rock iguanas once occupied all the islands in the Turks & Caicos; but, now endangered, they’re found mainly on Little Water Cay off the northeast coast of Providenciales, home to most of the island’s resorts. Thanks to conservation efforts, the iguanas are rapidly multiplying and roam all over this uninhabited nature reserve. Kayak or take a boat tour to the isle to eyeball these docile creatures. See them from two looping boardwalks on the cay’s north and south sides.
TURKS AND CAICOS ROCK IGUANA ©NATURE STILL PHOTOGRAPHY
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 13
TRAVEL NEWS What to Look for in 2020 and Beyond
reconnect with family and friends as you sail europe with Princess
By Isabelle Labrosse
With a new decade beginning, here’s a glimpse at what to look forward to in 2020 and beyond.
APEX, ARTIST’S RENDERING ©CELEBRITY CRUISES
MALAGÁ, SPAIN ©SILVERSEA CRUISES
14 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
APEX OF MODERN CRUISING Celebrity Cruises is getting ready for the inaugural season of its new Celebrity Apex, the second ship of its Edge series, setting sail this April. The 2,910-passenger Apex builds on the success of her sister ship, the award-winning Celebrity Edge, to take modern cruising to yet another level with interiors created by world-renowned designers, industry-leading cuisine featuring offerings from Michelin-starred Chef Cornelius Gallagher, and brand-new wellness and fitness programs. The ship will also feature the cutting-edge Magic Carpet, a platform cantilevered up to 13 storeys above sea level. Celebrity Apex will offer spring and summer sailings to Northern Europe and the Mediterranean before repositioning to the Caribbean for the winter.
Explore world-famous destinations – and our newest ships – with your favorite people + enjoy up to $60 USD in onboard spending money!^
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SUSTAINABLE BUCKET LIST Lonely Planet released its top destinations for 2020, and its Best in Travel list puts Bhutan as the No. 1 country to visit this year because of its low impact tourism policy. The world’s only carbon-negative country, Bhutan is also expected to become the first fully organic nation this year. The country is making its way to the top of many travellers’ bucket lists, and tour operators are taking notice. Slated to open this fall, andBeyond’s Punakha River Lodge will be the company’s first luxury experiential lodge in Bhutan. Located in the lush Punakha Valley surrounded by rice paddies, the lodge will feature six luxury tents, one honeymoon villa, a two-bedroom villa, as well as a spa and a space dedicated to yoga for travellers looking to combine adventure and wellness. VOYAGE OF A LIFETIME Once-in-a-lifetime journeys require some planning ahead, which is why Silversea Cruises has recently launched its Grand Voyage Mediterranean 2021. The 59-day cruise will take guests to 45 destinations in 17 countries along the Mediterranean and the Black Sea, travelling aboard the recently refurbished Silver Shadow. Highlights include classics such as the Art Nouveau architecture of Barcelona; the golden-age glamour of Monte-Carlo; the whitewashed landscapes of Santorini; and the French Colonial architecture of Casablanca. The itinerary also visits less-travelled destinations such as the sun-soaked beaches of Durrës, Albania; the subtropical delights of Batumi, Georgia; the musical charms of Odessa, Ukraine; and the coastal beauty of Sochi, Russia; plus a maiden call in La Estaca, on El Hierro – the smallest of the Canary Islands – touted as “the island of soul.”
11-day Scandinavia & Russia
10-day European Explorer
12-day British Isles
Roundtrip Copenhagen Sky Princess SM | Jun 30, 2020
London to Rome Enchanted Princess SM | Jul 1, 2020
Roundtrip London Regal Princess ® | Jul 3, 2020
Balcony fares from*
*Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses of $273.02 CAD are included.
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Balcony fares from*
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For more information please contact your Ensemble Travel® Group Advisor *Fare based on lead-in balcony categories on a space-available basis at time of booking. Fares for other dates may vary. Fares are per person, non-air, cruise-only, based on double occupancy and apply to the first two passengers in a state-room. These fares do not apply to singles or third/ fourth-berth passengers. This offer is capacity controlled and may not be combinable with any other public, group or past passenger discount, including onboard credits. Fares quoted in Canadian dollars. †Certain restrictions apply, please refer to your travel advisor for complete term, conditions and definitions that apply to all bookings. Offer valid 3/1/20 to 5/15/20. ^Up to $60 onboard spending money is per stateroom and is applicable to first/second-berth guests only. Third/fourth-berth guests are not eligible. Onboard spending money may be used on a single voyage only, is not redeemable for cash, cannot be used in the casino and expires at the end of that voyage. Offer is not transferable and may not be combinable with other select offers or other onboard credits. Onboard spending money is quoted in U.S. dollars and is based on the ship’s onboard currency. Void where prohibited by law. ©2020, Princess Cruise Lines, Ltd. Ships of Bermudan and British registry.
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 15
PACKING LIST Zero-Waste Travel Essentials By Lesley Miskell
With minimal waste products becoming more common, here are some of our favourite zero-waste travel essentials to take with you on your next trip.
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WILD JASMINE DRY SHAMPOO Dry shampoo is a staple to revitalize hair between shampoos or during long days of travel. Wild Jasmine’s Dry Shampoo has organically grown natural products to help combat oil roots and boost body in your hair. It is available for both light and dark hair, and comes in a compostable paper tube that is refillable. $18 CAD, wildjasmine.ca
UNWRAPPEDLIFE TRAVEL SET When you fly, you always have to remember that there are liquid restrictions, so when packing shampoo, why not choose a bar instead? UnwrappedLife’s line of shampoo and conditioner bars has a variety for all types of hair. And the best part is, they’re all packaged plastic-free with reusable tins included, ideal for hair care on the go! $40 CAD, unwrappedlife.com
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LASTSWAB COTTON SWAB LastSwab is the first sanitary, reusable Q-Tip alternative. They’re easy to clean, and because each one comes in a biodegradable carrying case, it’s also easy to take them everywhere. Available in a makeup and a standard version, they’re offered in a variety of colours named after endangered sea creatures. $12 USD, lastobject.com
16 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
SAND CLOUD REUSABLE NET BAG Sand Cloud’s eco-net tote bags are the newest addition to the Shark Tank success company’s efforts in sustainability. The lightweight bags, made from 100% fair trade organic cotton, can hold more than 20 lbs, are easy to pack, and can even double as a carry-on. Plus, the eco-netting fabric will prevent sand from getting stuck in the bag on any beach vacation.
ECOVESSEL BOULDER STAINLESS STEEL WATER BOTTLE This multi-use, eco-friendly water bottle offers the longest hot and cold times available, thanks to a patented and trademarked technology. The Boulder includes a Reflecta™ insulated lid, a strainer for infusing fresh fruit into your water and a protective bumper to eliminate dents. It is available in 2 sizes and 7 different colour choices for everyone to choose from.
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London: a city of endless possibilities London, England Travellers fly to London for its museums, historical sites, monuments and attractions, many of which they can discover on foot or by bus, metro and even boat — each offering a unique view of the city. Among the many things to do in the English capital, royal landmarks, chic boutiques, verdant parks, lively squares and happening pubs are proof that there’s never a dull moment in London! Daily flights to London from Toronto, Montreal & Vancouver
20 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
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Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 21
MOST INSTAGRAMMABLE most
CASTLES By Maria-Teresa Andreacchi
A great Instagram photo does two things, it boasts visual interest and it tells a story; criteria that Europe’s castles easily accommodate. Between the architecture and detailed interiors, you’ll find endless opportunities to create a photo journal of an unforgettable #EuropeanGetaway.
CHÂTEAU DE CHAMBORD, FRANCE
22 •CASTLE, Vacations ASHFORD IRELAND• ®
ASHFORD CASTLE, IRELAND Once home to the Guinness family, this 350-acre estate has built a reputation for classic Irish sports, such as falconry and equestrian activities. The Ashford Castle hashtag, #AshfordCastle, has garnered over 31,000 images on Instagram. Equally impressive to the gargantuan building is the view of the estate from the spa. The spa’s relaxation pool overlooks the estate through large glass windows. It could take weeks to photograph an estate this large, which means that no matter where you are on the property, you’re guaranteed to snap the image of a lifetime (and feel like royalty as you do it).
CHÂTEAU DE CHAMBORD, FRANCE Surrounded by approximately 13,500 acres of an enclosed park, Château de Chambord looks like it’s been plucked from a fairy tale. The French monument is a reflection of French and Italian architecture that flaunts symmetry with a double helix staircase and strong memorizing shapes that make for a great Instagram photo. The outside of Château de Chambord, with its incredible size and detail, is a picture on its own while the inside is so large, you can spend hours finding nooks to photograph. The estate’s forest is also open to exploration, offering tourists trails and bike paths.
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 23
THE PARADOR DE GRANADA, SPAIN Created with both Islamic and Christian influence, Spain’s castles have a unique architecture that is completely different than the rest of Europe. The Parador de Granada has gracefully preserved this cultural mix with a dreamy Mediterranean garden, grand archways, and beautiful red bricks – Old World details, like oversized wood doors and tiled floors, are intoxicatingly mesmerizing, and perfect for Instagram. Though every corner of this castle is photo-friendly, the courtyard is especially unique. With several archways and stunning flora, it perfectly encapsulates its cultural influences.
SPAIN PARADOR DE GRANADA AL QUBBA ©RCBD
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ROSEWOOD CASTIGLION DEL BOSCO, ITALY The Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco is an idyllic estate in Tuscany. The property quintessentially resembles the region; a rustic stone building surrounded by endless hillsides and vineyards. At 800 years old, it’s considered to be one of the oldest and best-preserved estates in Tuscany. The estate also has its own winery and several private villas. Located in Val d’Orcia, a UNESCO World Heritage site that runs through Tuscany, this castle offers a private escape to the Italian countryside. For the best Instagram photo, wait until the sun is ready to set – there’s nothing more beautiful than a pink sky hovering over Tuscan greenery.
THE ROSEWOOD CASTIGLION DEL BOSCO ©RCBD
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Ethical Report Detours PUNTA PATIÑO NATURE RESERVE IN PANAMA ©DOUG WALLACE
Travel with Purpose Rethinking the Tropics: The Eco-Experience By Doug Wallace
The road less travelled is usually the most interesting by far. Many tropical destinations have more than a few hidden gems and lush experiences off the beaten rainforest path. Think outside the resort – and take the natural beauty route.
HIDE IN GRENADA The beaches are lovely, but finding time for the interior of Grenada yields a wealth of gardens, forests, hidden waterfalls, and heritage plantations. A spot of lunch and a tour at Belmont Estate in the northeast bring into focus how the production of spices – nutmeg and mace, turmeric, cinnamon, bay leaves, cloves, and ginger – has long been the island’s source of both wealth and pride. Chocolate too, is now a big draw, both at the factories that produce it and in the markets of the capital St. George’s. A hike up Mount Qua Qua in the Grand Etang National Park & Forest Reserve starts at a unique crater lake located in an extinct volcano. Visitors also keep an eye out for critters, which are plentiful: lizards, armadillos, mona monkeys, and more. WANDER THROUGH PANAMA With its famed canal as your go-between on a small-ship cruise, Panama offers ecoadventure-filled environments along both coastlines. Trolling the Pacific coast delivers cliffside birdwatching, rainforest hikes, and visits to Indigenous villages in the Darién Gap. On the Atlantic side, visitors wander the historic remains of UNESCO-designated Spanish colonial ruins and snorkel the coral reefs of the palm-studded Guna Yala Islands. Panama’s mix of ecosystems throughout its parks and sanctuaries nets a surprisingly large range of experiences, taking in rainforest, mountains, mangroves, and beaches. Don’t forget to make a pitstop in Panama City at Biomuseo, a museum spotlighting natural history.
HIKING IN GRAND ETANG NATIONAL PARK & FOREST RESERVE IN GRENADA
RELAX IN BARBADOS The eastern shore of Barbados has such a soothing vibe, it’s little wonder everyone heads here on the weekend. The ecotourism aspects of the east coast centre on the island’s unique geology and sugar cane-producing past. Walkers Reserve is a dune restoration project and developing agroforestry area working to reclaim the land from a former sand quarry. Hiking trails, including one along a former heritage railway line, reveal cane fields, tropical forest, rugged coastline, and the odd mongoose. Areas around Bathsheba Beach and Crane Bay sport terrific, eco-conscious inns and guest houses just right for settling into a good book. You’re still only about a 45-minute drive from the thick of the beaches and nightlife on the busier south and west coasts, but far enough away to enjoy some prime privacy and revel in the natural environment.
GREAT GREEN MACAW IN COSTA RICA
COOL OFF IN COSTA RICA With nearly 30 national parks, 58 wildlife refuges and eight biosphere reserves filled with lush, untouched nature, this popular Central American destination is a global ecotourism leader. An astounding 25 per cent of the country is protected parkland. And while many visitors head to the southern park of Manuel Antonio, the northern province of Guanacaste is also a perfect spot, from the barefoot-chic villas near Playa Conchal to the luxury hotels of the Papagayo Peninsula. Wherever you end up, indulge in horseback riding through hacienda pastures, wander around the ponds of a bird sanctuary, and commune with monkeys, coatis, and turtles in the rainforest. 26 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
ESCAPE TO THE SOUTH PACIFIC The inhabited islands of French Polynesia are dependent on their lagoons because they are the main sources of food. Protecting them is paramount, which has led to the development of natural marine sanctuaries – including the largest shark sanctuary in the world in the Marshall Islands. Accommodations range from quaint eco-friendly guest houses to luxe eco-hotels that win awards for zero emissions. Many of the big hotels have ecological centres, coral restoration programs or natural aquariums that protect marine environments while being both educational and entertaining. Some resorts even experiment with new forms of energy – cool things like solar-powered catamarans, seawater air conditioning, and coconut oil-powered electricity.
WALKERS RESERVE, BARBADOS ©DOUG WALLACE
Health & Wellness
VACATION Rx IN THE WELLNESS VALLEY By Tara Nolan
Emilia-Romagna’s Wellness Valley encourages active travel.
This is a beautiful part of the country to take in the area’s rich history and culture through outdoor experiences. In the city of Rimini, you might see groups Nordic walking along the sandy beach, poles in hand. A bike provided by the hotel allows me to pedal around the city, across a Roman bridge, started by Augustus and finished by Tiberius in AD 21, and through the neighbourhood of Borgo San Giuliano, a former fishing village now known for its lively murals. In connecting visitors to outdoor adventure, the region’s businesses and accommodations aim to make it easy to explore by bike and on foot with maps. I’m given a thorough guidebook that shows routes with distance, elevation and must-sees. There’s even an app available.
At my next hotel, in nearby Faenza, a mountain bike is delivered to me by a local bike shop. Here, there are 2,000 kilometres of bike lanes, road routes, and singletrack to explore. My guide, Cristina Merloni, leads me on a 40-kilometre ride through olive groves, past persimmon and kiwi trees, along paths overlooking vertiginous vineyards and beside steep clay hills that have fed nearby Faenza’s pottery trade (which I later see examples of in the city). The promise of a sweet treat at a nearby gelateria propels me up a series of hills to the medieval village of Brisighella. It is a welcome refreshment before heading back. It seems as though food is my motivation more than once on this trip, as another day, I find myself on a rural hike in Predappio when I spot a vineyard off in the distance. I know the hills I’m about to climb will lead me to organic wine and a hearty lunch. Wellness doesn’t have to mean sacrificing la dolce vita. Eating a lunch featuring homemade pasta and other local specialties made from fresh ingredients is healthy fuel after all the fresh air.
FAENZA ©CRISTINA MERLONI
“How old are you and what do you do for fitness?” asks the young personal trainer as we jog down the steps into the garden at our hotel. I decide it’s not a rude question and answer – he simply does not want me to expire on the grounds of the hotel.
BREAKFAST AT BORGO CONDÉ WINE RESORT, NEAR PREDAPPIO
PREDAPPIO ©CRISTINA MERLONI
But here I am, doing squats and lunges, steps from the Adriatic Sea, in an area in Emilia-Romagna, a region of Northern Italy, called Wellness Valley. The concept, which was founded in 2002 by Nerio Alessandri, also founder of fitness equipment giant Technogym, was conceived to encourage the area’s citizens to live a healthy lifestyle. This “wellness ecosystem” encourages exercise, a healthy diet and mental well-being, and extends right down to urban infrastructure and planning. The Wellness Valley brand recently expanded to include tourism, packaging up ideas and routes for wellness, exercise and sport for those who want to visit the region. My early-morning sweat-fest is a service offered by my hotel, like others in the area. In this case, going on vacation doesn’t have to mean you give up your weekly Pilates classes. The classes can come to you.
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NORDIC WALKING IN RIMINI
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 29
NOTHING ELSE LIKE IT The glacial ice was so close that droplets of water can be seen trickling down the side. A giant splash, and a two-ton ice-block calves off, crashing into the sea. Ripples are still rolling toward our craft boat when a shadow appears. On the boat’s opposite side, a blue whale’s massive tail has risen from the water.
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Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 31
Finding the Good Way on the
Camino de Santiago By Debbie Olsen
Whatever your reasons for undertaking this legendary pilgrimage, the journey will change you. You can tell you’re about to undertake an epic journey when someone asks you the one-word question: why? On the eve of a six-day trek on Spain’s legendary Camino Francés pilgrimage route, our G Adventures guide, Lalo Garcia, gathers our trekking group together. After a round of introductions, he asks each of us to share why we are undertaking the journey. For centuries, people have been walking to Santiago de Compostela to visit the ornate cathedral where the remains of the apostle St. James the Greater are believed to be interred. In ancient times, the Catholic Church considered the Camino de Santiago one of three key pilgrimages – alongside Rome and Jerusalem. Today, the pilgrimage route is as popular with tourists as it is with religious enthusiasts.
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA CATHEDRAL ON THE MAGNIFICENT PRAZA DO OBRADOIRO, SPAIN ©GADVENTURES
WAY OF ST. JAMES IN GALICIA, SPAIN
PUENTE LA REINA
As we each share our motivations for setting out on this route, I realize that some people’s reasons seemed better than mine. Two women had been on the trail for 32 days and are joining our group for the last six days of their trek. For them, this is very much a religious pilgrimage. A retired school administrator from the United States is carrying pictures of his brother and a dear friend who passed away the previous year. For him, the journey is a way to honour those relationships and to say goodbye. One of the youngest adventurers in our group reveals that she had nearly died the previous year from complications after climbing a mountain in the Himalayas. She had spent months learning to walk and talk again. Part of the reason she is doing the trek is to prove to herself that she is still capable of accomplishing physical challenges. My husband and I, and several others in the group, are there because we want to experience a bucket-list hike. The next morning, before we set out on the 23-kilometre walk from Sarria to Portomarin, we are each issued an official pilgrim’s passport (Credencial del Peregrino). Lalo explains that pilgrims who walk the last 100 kilometres of the trail and get at least two stamps in their passport each day qualify for the official Compostela Pilgrim Certificate. Passport stamps are freely given at churches, restaurants, accommodations and shops along the way. The final stamp is given at the pilgrim’s reception office. From our hotel in Sarria, we walk up a steep hill to the local cathedral, Iglesia Santa Marina de Sarria, where a very sleepy monk gives us our first passport stamps. We follow the trail from there through a wooded area that leads to the next village. The trail is mostly a rural trek that traverses rolling countryside, sleepy villages, farms, and small towns. EL CAMINO HIKE GROUP ©GADVENTURES
Each morning, our G Adventures group starts walking together, but each person walks at their own pace and stops where they want along the route. Local restaurants are great stops for coffee breaks, lunch, or dinner. The 14 hikers in our group range in age from late-20s to late-60s and hail from the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia. We get to know each other and meet other pilgrims as we walk along the trail. My husband and I have a nice visit with a couple from Germany as we walk together for a few hours one day. In a restaurant, we meet a British couple who are cycling – a completely different way to experience the Camino. There’s a special kind of comradery amongst pilgrims and whenever you pass another traveller, it’s tradition to say “Buen Camino,” which means “good way.” You get a lot of time to think when you’re walking for six days and that’s where the magic of the Camino happens. Regardless of what your motives are when you begin, there’s something about this walk that changes you. I think about the ancient pilgrims who walked ‘The Way of St. James’ hoping to leave their sins behind. Then I spend time thinking about what I could leave behind on the trail – trying to define the things that hold me back from being my best self. I pick up a rock and carry it with me for much of the route. Near the end, I leave it behind on a trail marker as a symbol of something in my past that I am letting go. When I get the final stamp in my passport in the pilgrim’s reception office in Santiago de Compostela, I am again asked about my reasons for undertaking the journey. That’s when I realized my reasons have changed.
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GROUP SHOT ©DEBBIE OLSEN
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Transatlantic with WestJet
WestJet 787 Dreamliner.
Dreamliner updates for 2019/2020 WestJet announces new Dreamliner flights between Vancouver and London (Gatwick) and increased frequency between Calgary and Paris. With more flights and an elevated onboard experience, WestJet is able to take guests further than ever before. 787 Dreamliner summer schedule 2020 Route
Vancouver – London (LGW)
Staring April 26, 2020
Toronto – London (LGW)
Calgary – London (LGW)
Starting April 14, 2020
Calgary – Dublin Calgary – Paris Calgary – Rome
Up to 3x weekly
Wed · Sat · Sun
Up to 6x weekly
Up to 3x weekly
Thu · Fri · Sat
Resumes May 3, 2020 Resumes March 12, 2020 Starting May 2, 2020
787 Dreamliner winter schedule 2019-2020 Route
Toronto – London (LGW)
Starting October 23, 2019
Calgary – London (LGW)
Up to 4x weekly
Now – April 3, 2020
Calgary – London (LGW)
April 4–13, 2020
For winter fun, explore the Playground of the Gods in Japan. Fine flakes of snow swirl around us as we step off the large cable car that transports adventure seekers close to the peak of Mount Asahi. Almost smack in the centre of Japan’s northernmost island of Hokkaido, Asahi is a mountain of superlatives. Not only is this active volcano the highest mountain on the island, but it’s also the main attraction in the country’s largest national park, Daisetsuzan National Park. And it boasts the longest ski and snowshoe season in Japan (from November until early May). As we walk into the whiteout that envelops us on this March morning, I’m thinking that Mount Asahi might just be Hokkaido’s best kept secret too. While most foreigners head to the resort town of Niseko to find the island’s famously fluffy powder snow, my guide tells me the snow here is drier and even lighter. “Champagne snow,” Kazu Arai calls it. What’s more, Mount Asahi is easy to get to, with express buses running regularly from Asahikawa Airport, one hour away.
Hokkaido’s H I G H E S T M O U N TA I N
Clipped into modern lightweight snowshoes, I follow closely behind Kazu as the wind whips fresh snow into our faces and the ground and sky meld into one white blur. Just as I’m starting to wonder about the sanity of this adventure, the wind dies, and I can see steam billowing from two gaping holes in the mountainside in front of us. We’ve reached a spot where fumaroles, or vents, allow scalding hot gases to escape the volcano.
By Suzanne Morphet
I didn’t come to ski or board but to snowshoe, an unexpectedly popular sport here in Hokkaido. But perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, Japan is a northern nation and Hokkaido itself shares roughly the same latitude as some U.S. states.
SNOWSHOEING ON MOUNT ASAHI
I hang back and watch with a mixture of awe and disbelief as Kazu walks right up to the edge of one vent, picks up a chunk of snow and throws it into what could be the maw of some mythical creature. A fraction of a second later, it explodes like firecrackers on Halloween. This looks like too much fun to miss out on, so after Kazu assures me it’s safe – and allowed – I snowshoe near the vent and toss in a few snowballs of my own, then stand back and listen to them shatter in the intense heat. Carrying on, we snowshoe across a gentle plateau and now the sun comes out, lighting up the tree-covered slopes in the distance. I learn that Daisetsuzan National Park includes other magnificent mountains besides Mount Asahi. They’re so high, averaging roughly 2,000 metres, and their landscapes so beautiful, the indigenous Ainu people call these mountains ‘the playground of the Gods.’
MOUNT ASAHI, DAISETSUZAN NATIONAL PARK
38 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
FUMAROLES ON MOUNT ASAHI
From spring through autumn, it’s a hiker’s paradise of forested trails, alpine flowers and grassy meadows. But winter is for hardier adventurers. And when you’re finished playing, a reward awaits. At the base of the mountain, along with a few hotels, is Asahidake Onsen, one of more than 3,000 hot springs in Japan. After a snowshoe excursion on this mountain, soaking in hot mineral water never felt so good. Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 39
GREAT CANADIAN WAR MEMORIAL TOUR Designed by Canadians for Canadians, this special tour pays tribute to all who have served their country in the Great War and World War II.
Book by April 28 &
ON 2020 GLOBUS GREAT CANADIAN WAR MEMORIAL TOUR DEPARTURES*
DRIFTING DOWN THE DANUBE with
10 days | roundtrip from Paris
$3,599† CAD Based on October 10, 2020 departure
Other departure dates available.
Brief Itinerary: Paris, France; Giverny; Normandy Area– Landing Beaches; Ranville; Honfleur; Dieppe; Amiens; Somme Area; Vimy Ridge; Ypres, Belgium; Paris, France
Canadian National Vimy Memorial
†Featured price is per person, land only, based on double occupancy, departure date as indicated (the lowest price available to book), includes taxes and fees, and reflects the 5% discount offer. Flights and travel insurance are additional. *Book and deposit a 2020 Globus Great Canadian War Memorial Tour (RY) to save 5% per person on the land-only portion of the core tour not including extra night accommodations, extensions, taxes/fees tips or supplements. Booking must be made, under deposit and discount applied between February 4 and April 28, 2020 for travel in 2020. Offer combinable with the Welcome Back Credit (if applicable). Offer reliant on space availability. Applies to new 2020 bookings only. Full cancellation penalties will apply. Additional restrictions may apply; see Travel Terms & Conditions for details. May be withdrawn at any time. Available from participating GFOB offices only. 3280 Bloor St. W, Centre Tower, Suite 400, Toronto, ON M8X 2X3, TICO#1893755/50015835
Don’t miss the boat The Danube is just as fitting for the first-time river cruiser as it is for the seasoned and off-the-beaten-path traveller. Offering countless views, one-of-a-kind excursions, and unexpected ports of call, no one goes the distance along the Danube like Avalon Waterways. So whether you’re testing the waters or diving into your next cruise, welcome aboard.
ACTIVE & DISCOVERY ON THE DANUBE
THE DANUBE FROM THE BLACK SEA TO BUDAPEST
9 days | Budapest to Linz (or reverse)
9 days | Bucharest to Budapest
A TASTE OF THE DANUBE
THE LEGENDARY DANUBE
4 days | Budapest to Vienna (or reverse)
8 days | Nuremberg to Budapest
THE BLUE DANUBE DISCOVERY
6 days | Passau to Budapest
8 days | Budapest to Nuremberg
8 days | Deggendorf to Budapest (or reverse)
9 days | Budapest to Bucharest
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Sweden’s stunning High Coast is perfect for travellers looking for outdoor adventures.
By Mark Sissons
HÖGA KUSTEN, SWEDEN
Once you climb halfway up the nearly 300-metre-high east face of the granite wall at Skuleberget, the first thing that appears is the Gulf of Bothnia, shimmering in the distance. Rising above it is one of the world’s most unique coastlines. Called Höga Kusten (The High Coast) because it reaches a world record of nearly 285 metres above sea level, this UNESCO World Heritage site of low mountains, dense forests, sheltered bays, and tranquil islands offers one of Scandinavia’s most spectacular, yet accessible, wilderness experiences. EXPLORING THE HIGH COAST For centuries, unrelenting forces of nature have shaped this dramatic landscape into one of the most remarkable topographies on the planet. Formed from a post-glacial rebound following the retreat of the great ice sheets that once covered northern Europe, Höga Kusten’s breathtaking mixture of steep granite cliffs and rock make it ideal for adventurous hikers, island-hopping sea kayakers, and anyone who wants to escape into its labyrinth of evergreen oases. This naturally Nordic gem is just a one-hour flight or a five-hour drive from Stockholm.
42 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
Gateway to Höga Kusten is the blue-collar town of Örnsköldsvik, known in North America as the home of more than a dozen NHL stars, including Vancouver’s Sedin twins and two-time Stanley Cup champion Peter Forsberg. Örnsköldsvik is also where the famous Swedish outdoor clothing manufacturer Fjällräven (Swedish for Arctic Fox) got its start and still operates a colossal outlet store packed with bargains. EUROPE’S MOST UNIQUE WILDERNESS Beyond Örnsköldsvik lies the coastal Skuleskogen National Park with wild and winding terrain that offers spectacular sea views and perfect conditions for summer and autumn hiking. A hilly jumble of pristine lakes, thick spruce forests, steep granite cliffs, and intriguing coastal geological phenomena, Skuleskogen gradually arose from the Gulf of Bothnia at the end of the last ice age to form one of northern Europe’s most unique wilderness areas.
tiny 17th-century wooden chapel adorned with elaborate murals. This village attracts hordes of visitors during central Sweden’s long days of summer. By mid-autumn, the ferry loads of day-trippers are nearly gone, making it a relatively quiet time to explore the island. If you dare to, also sample surströmming (fermented herring), considered by many Swedes to be among the finest of Baltic delicacies. Kick back with a glass of locally distilled gin and take in the stunning sunset in this most exquisite of naturally Nordic destinations.
CAMPING AND DAY TRIPPING Easily accessible offshore is another of Höga Kusten’s gems – an archipelago of forested islands that also offer superb trekking. Most are only sparsely populated, sprinkled with seasonal holiday cabins and campsites, and most are within paddling distance from the mainland. The largest and most populous among them is the island of Ulvön, which has been inhabited since at least the mid-16th century. Once the largest fishing port along Sweden’s northern coast, Ulvön’s picturesque village of Ulvöhamn features rows of traditional red-and-white wooden houses and a
TOAST WITH SWEDISH HERRING
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 43
FEEL FREE TO IMMERSE YOURSELF IN HISTORY. Come aboard Europe’s Leading Cruise Line, unpack once and wake up to a new European city nearly every day. Explore the sights, sounds and ﬂavors of different cultures —all on your own terms. Envision the ancient battles that once took place as you enter the Colosseum in Rome. Sit down, or dance around at a restaurant in Santorini and experience traditional Greek cuisine, wine and music. In St. Petersburg, take in vivid onion domes atop churches, explore the immense Hermitage Museum or spend an evening at the Russian Ballet. With eight award-winning ships to choose from including some of our newest ships, this will be a history lesson you won’t want to skip.
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Palma, Majorca, Spain
Only applicable to new bookings in Economy Class on select Europe Flight & Hotel packages (including tours) made between September 3, 2019, and September 2, 2020, for travel between January 1 and December 31, 2020. Minimum 5-night stay required. Subject to availability at time of booking. Not applicable to children. Not applicable to group bookings. Offers expire at 11:59 p.m. ET on the date indicated. Flights operated by Air Canada or Air Canada Rouge. For applicable terms and conditions, visit aircanadavacations.com. Holder of Quebec permit #702566. TICO registration #R50013536 / W50013537. ■ ¹Book 180 days or more prior to departure and save $1,000 per couple. ²Book between 179 and 120 days prior to departure and save $500 per couple. ■ ®Aeroplan and the Aeroplan logo are registered trademarks of Aeroplan Inc. ®Air Canada Vacations is a registered trademark of Air Canada, used under license by Touram Limited Partnership. 1440 Ste Catherine St West, Suite 600, Montreal, QC, H3G 1R8. 5925 Airport Road, Suite 700, Mississauga, ON, L4V 1W1.
Ultimate Family Vacations
By Miriam Porter
for Families in Europe
Families travelling to Europe can choose from a vast variety of cultural experiences to inspire, teach, enlighten, and thrill young minds while creating lasting memories. Here are our top picks for cultural experiences that families will love.
PONTA DA PIEDADE, ALGARVE, PORTUGAL
Natural wonders, history, art, food and music await your next European adventure.
DOLPHINS SWIMMING IN ALGARVE, PORTUGAL
ALGARVE, PORTUGAL Set sail along the Algarve coast in Portugal in search of wild dolphins to see these magnificent marine creatures in their natural habitat and observe them safely. Dolphin species include Risso’s, striped, and bottlenose, in addition to orca whales, sharks and sea turtles, swimming in clear blue waters. Some local guides are marine biologists and teach families all about the creatures living in Algarve and take you to hidden caves, grottos, cruising past ancient rock formations along the coast. Save time to swim and explore stunning family-friendly beaches, such as the golden sands of Praia do Ancão. PARIS, FRANCE Culture and gastronomy meet in France’s bustling capital among art, fashion, and famous monument-lined boulevards. Little chefs (and big ones too) can wear aprons in Paris for cooking classes while preparing authentic three-course French meals. Many classes are in English, but it’s likely you will all learn some French while preparing your appetizer, main course and dessert from scratch. Using fresh and seasonal ingredients, the meals are easy to recreate so once back home everyone can help prepare dinner, at least in a perfect world. COOKING CLASS IN PARIS, FRANCE
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 47
Just You have brightened up and
changed my life for the better
NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
ATHENS, GREECE Teach your kids the wonders of Greek mythology with stories of Poseidon, the goddess Athena, and King Theseus in Athens. Hop aboard the bright red Athens Happy Train for an extraordinary sightseeing tour from Constitution Square. Weave through the historical centre of town, ancient neighbourhoods, and the hill of Acropolis, a striking and significant architectural monument. Admire the War Museum, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Panathenaic Stadium and more. Save a day to visit Hellenic Children’s Museum for exceptional exhibits showcasing Greek cultural heritage through games and play.
LONDON, ENGLAND Introduce your family to music at the London Symphony Orchestra with audience-engaged concerts and workshops or attend an open rehearsal to hear skilled professionals. For a spooky experience for older kids, head to the Tower of London and discover 1,000 years of history in this old infamous prison on a Yeoman Warder tour. Brave souls will tour this iconic fortress and learn about the legends of the tower ravens, ancient battles and prisoner tales. The tower is home to the Crown Jewels – the most powerful symbols of the British monarchy that hold cultural significance to the nation’s history and still under armed guard today.
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GALA DALI CASTLE
FIGUERES, SPAIN For the budding artists in your family, travel to the birthplace of Salvador Dali, Figueres. The influential Spanish painter and printmaker will inspire young minds to create masterpieces. Discover his life and work at Dali Theatre-Museum and Dali Jewels and open the doors to a Dalinian world and your child’s endless imagination. Passionate Dali fans can explore the ‘Dalinian Triangle’ with a visit to his former home in the small town of Portlligat and the Gala Dali Castle in the medieval village of Púbol. 48 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
TOWER OF LONDON
Travelling solo doesn’t mean travelling alone. Here at Just You - the number one choice for solo travellers in Canada - our worldwide escorted tours bring together like-minded people and are full of truly unforgettable experiences.
FOOD, FUN, AMAZING DESTINATIONS & SO MUCH MORE. ALL INCLUDED.
On a Carnival® cruise there’s no shortage of fun! You’ll do more than just pass the time as you sail from port to port, not to mention the amazing destinations, delicious cuisine, exciting nightlife, and spectacular entertainment. From Europe to Alaska and more — there’s truly no end to all the memories you can make onboard and ashore.
9 DAY EUROPE FROM ROME, ITALY
7 DAY ALASKA FROM SEATTLE, WA
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DATE: September 15, 2021 SHIP: Carnival Legend® ITINERARY: Naples; Catania; Corfu; Kotor; Dubrovnik; Livorno
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REACHES A NEW APEX
Celebrity Edge® has been recognized as one of the world’s greatest places by Time magazine, and now the second ship in our Edge® Series, Celebrity ApexSM, is poised to become a destination in itself, too, this spring. Unwind in luxurious accommodations that erase the boundaries between indoor and outdoor living. Discover revolutionary experiences like the cantilevered Magic CarpetSM, where you can raise a toast while you soar above the ocean. And dine in 18 globally inspired restaurants, featuring menus crafted by Michelin-starred chefs and the most awarded wine collection at sea. Both of these stunning ships elevate travel to a fine art. Sail the Mediterranean and Caribbean on our newest ships—with our latest offer. ENSEMBLE EXCLUSIVE: Book an Aqua Class or Concierge Class cabin and receive $100 Shore Excursion Credit per stateroom!
The Early Saver fare is subject to availability and is capacity controlled. Cruise rates are in US dollars, per person and based on double occupancy. Category restrictions, exclusions and cancellation penalties apply. Full names are required for each guest. Carnival reserves the right to withdraw and/or change offer at any time without prior notice. Price Protection applies to the cruise fare only and does not include Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses. Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses range from $48.38 to $412.00 and are assessed on a per guest basis for all guests according to the itinerary. Early Saver fare is backed by a unique price protection policy (only available to bookings made in USD currency) that allows you to adjust your cruise fare to the best available fare for a like category stateroom (no downgrades allowed) advertised by Carnival and available to the general public. Price protection will be subject to the prevailing Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses and/or fuel supplement if applicable. Carnival will honor your request for price protection if the reduction on the total amount paid for your booking results only from a lower cruise fare and not from the booked ancillary services, such as air, transfers, pre-paid gratuities, or Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses. The guest is responsible for increases to ancillary services such as air, resulting from changes to ship and/or sail date, or adjustments to cruise fare. Early Saver price protection does not apply to group rates, membership programs, charters, select promotional fares, travel agent rebates, or other travel agent promotions not offered by Carnival to the general public. When re-pricing to a new promotion, guest assumes all terms and conditions of the new promotion and may forfeit any or all features associated with the original fare, such as cabin assignment, onboard credit, an upgrade, special deposit and payment terms, etc. A $50 change fee per guest will be assessed for ship and/or sail date changes made prior to final payment due date. Remaining funds are nonrefundable/nontransferable and will be held as a future cruise credit to be applied to your cruise fare on a sailing within 24 months from the date of cancellation. Unused portions are forfeited. Request Early Saver (PEB) © 2020 Carnival Corporation. Carnival® and the Carnival logos are trademarks of Carnival Corporation. All rights reserved. Used under license. Ships’ Registry: The Bahamas, Panama and Malta.
50 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
Offer applies to 4-night and longer itineraries that depart Jan. 1, 2020 through December 31, 2021. Bookings must be made by June 30th, 2020. Offer excludes Galapagos and Future cruise bookings. Bookings should be made through Espresso and/or normal reservations methods but must select/request the ENSEMBLEXTRA. $100 per stateroom Shore Excursion credit will be applied in the form of an onboard credit. Offer is $100 Onboard credit “OBC” per stateroom for Concierge, and Aqua class cabins. Offers are applicable to new individual bookings and to staterooms in non-contracted group bookings, which must be named and deposited. Guests’ stateroom folios will be credited with an OBC. OBC has no cash value, is applicable to cruise only, non-transferable, not redeemable for cash, quoted in US Dollars and will expire if not used by 10:00 PM on the final night of the cruise. Offer excludes interior, oceanview, standard veranda and suite staterooms. Single occupancy bookings are eligible for the Offer. Refer to Cruise Ticket Contract for additional terms and conditions. Celebrity reserves the right to cancel the Offer at any time, correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions, and change or update fares, fees and surcharges at any time without prior notice. ©2020 Celebrity Cruises Inc. Ships’ registry: Malta and Ecuador.
Worldly Delights IKALTO CATHEDRAL AND TRADITIONAL QVEVRIS, GEORGIA
OLDEST WINE REGIONS By Maria-Teresa Andreacchi
Imagine sipping on wine made using an 8,000-year-old tradition or toasting with a crisp white as you overlook the Mediterranean Sea. The world’s oldest wine regions are where taste and history blend, offering a full-bodied vacation experience that even a novice wine lover will enjoy. OLIVE GROVES AND VINEYARD IN CRETE, GREECE
VAYOTS DZOR, ARMENIA When searching for the world’s oldest wine region, there’s no better place to start than Armenia, home to the oldest winery in the world (which dates back to approximately 4,000 BC). Since the 90s, the Armenian wine industry has been experiencing a resurgence – the indigenous grape Areni being one of the most popular varietals. The Vayots Dzor wine route is a great place to experience the thriving wine industry, and of course, sip on a varietal that has been growing for millennia. KAKHETI, GEORGIA If you’re interested in trying wine made using an 8,000-year-old method, Georgia is the place to do it. The Qvevri winemaking method, which uses buried clay vessels to ferment wine, is a part of the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. In addition to this ancient tradition, Georgia grows approximately 500 grape varietals. The region of Kakheti is only a few hours away from Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. Here, you can find wine made from the Rkatsiteli grape, which turns into an amber-hued white. With both mountains and plains, Kakheti easily ticks off all the elements of an iconic trip: beautiful scenery, delicious wine, and unforgettable history. SICILY, ITALY Between the sandy beaches and rolling hillside, you’ll find Sicily’s growing wine industry. In 2017, 6,000-year-old wine was discovered in a Sicilian cave. With wineries stretching across the entire island, every inch of Sicily is open to being explored. Notable varietals include Nero d’Avola, a bold and fruity red, Marsala, a dessert wine, and Nerello Cappuccio and Nerello Mascalese which are both grown on Mount Etna. CRETE, GREECE As if ancient Greece wasn’t influential enough, 21st-century archeologists uncovered a flavourful past to add to the country’s influence – Greece is among the first in Europe to cultivate wine. Crete, the largest island in Greece, has the perfect mix of beach, sun, and vino. Grapes in this region grow alongside olive trees at high altitudes. When touring Crete, keep an eye out for rare and unique white varietals, such as Dafni, Plyto, and Thrapsathiri. In addition to wine, the region is full of gastronomy, guaranteeing a delicious visit. PENEDÈS, SPAIN Viticulture is said to have started in the Penedès wine region. The region is most famously known for its sparkling wine, Cava, which is made using the same traditional method used to create Champagne. Only 40 minutes away from Barcelona, it’s a region you can easily slide into your itinerary for one day or an extended stay. Penedès’ wine production is responsible for heavily shaping the region’s culture and history, both of which can be explored at the Catalan Wine Cultures Museum.
52 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 51
CULINARY MECCA By Don Nichols
With the reopening of Noma in a new location in 2018, the Danish capital’s dining scene has been back in the headlines.
These days, there are plenty of top foodie spots to explore in Copenhagen. Here’s our mini guide to some of the hottest ones for noshing in this culinary mecca now. WHERE TO EAT A WORLD-CLASS MEAL – FOR A PRICE (APPROXIMATELY $500 PER PERSON) Chef René Redzepi closed the original Noma in early 2017, but generated buzz again when he unveiled the 2.0 version in gritty Refshaleøen, a former industrial district in Copenhagen’s harbour emerging as a dining and entertainment hub. This new reiteration has already been ranked No. 2 in the world.
SMØRREBRØD ©DON NICHOLS
COPENHAGEN RESTAURANTS AND STREET CAFÉS
Also in Refshaleøen, Alchemist opened last July and was recently named Denmark’s 2019 Restaurant of the Year. Nearly $20 million was spent converting an old warehouse used to build theatre sets into a dark, but exquisitely designed, multi-room dining space. Rasmus Munk, its 28-year-old chef, serves provocative small dishes, many that raise awareness of societal issues, for example, lamb’s brain calls out food waste. WHERE TO EAT MEALS BY EX-NOMA CHEFS (FOR LESS MONEY) Matt Orlando, Noma’s former Chef de Cuisine, emphasizes sustainability at Amass, a Refshaleøen restaurant that debuted in 2013. Its gold organic certification means that 90 to 100 per cent of the foods and beverages served are organic and pesticide-free. Local farms, regional purveyors, and the restaurant’s own garden provide the food for Orlando’s “modern Scandinavian” dishes. Rosio Sanchez, Noma’s former head pastry chef, opened her eponymous Mexican cantina in late 2017 in Vesterbro, a once-seedy area west of the city centre now teeming with restaurants, cafés, and bars. Dishes to try include cod empanada and octopus tostada.
54 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
WHERE TO NOSH ALONGSIDE LOCALS OUT FOR A FUN EVENING Again, head to Vesterbro for its hip vibe, more affordable prices, and a wide assortment of cuisines. Ancestrale caters to pescatarians, and those who like to sip biodynamic, natural and organic wines in a cozy setting. The limited menu changes daily and features five small plates. You’ll find Kødbyens Fiskebar in Vesterbro’s meatpacking district, but it specializes in seafood. Co-owned by Anders Selmer, formerly Noma’s restaurant manager and sommelier, it has earned a Michelin Bib Gourmand every year since its 2009 opening. Nearby Paté Paté is a combination wine bar, eatery, and tapas bar. The eclectic menu includes French, Nordic, North African, and Spanish dishes. WHERE TO GO CASUAL Four lively food halls have popped up over the last two years in various parts of the city, but all are easily accessible: Boltens Food Court, Bridge Street Kitchen, Reffen – Copenhagen Street Food, and Tivoli Food Hall. Vendors serve food from around the world – Danish open-faced sandwiches called smørrebrød, burgers, Chinese crispy duck, gyros, Moroccan flatbread, and more. WHERE YOU LEAST EXPECT TO EAT ORGANIC FOOD In January 2019, Orlando at Amass opened Broaden & Build, a craft brewery just steps from his Refshaleøen restaurant. In a surprising twist, many of the beers are organic. Ditto for the food, mostly plant-based dishes such as spaghetti squash and roasted Brussels sprouts. Crispy fried chicken keeps meat lovers happy. Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 55
FLORA FARMS ©LOLA AUGUSTINE BROWN
FIVE FABULOUS CULINARY EXPERIENCES IN
MEZCAL RESTAURANT AT THE MONTAGE The five-course tasting menu at decadent Mezcal is incredible. From the first bite of the breadbasket (served studded with poblano peppers and avocado butter) to the shrimp tacos with pineapple purée and avocado relish, artfully arranged sea bass with crispy skin, and the 18-hour roasted suckling pig with white bean hummus, everything served is perfect. Smoky mezcal cocktails come served actually smoking in a glass cabinet. The selection of Mexican wines accompanying our menu is an unexpected delight.
By Lola Augustine Brown
Located at the tip of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, Los Cabos serves up incredible natural beauty, and some truly exceptional places to dine. From exclusive resort restaurants to rustic farm-to-table experiences to loved-by-locals favourites, there is something for every palate. Here are five unmissable places to dine on your next trip.
FLORA FARMS What started small as Cabo’s first organic restaurant has grown into a stand-alone destination that offers sumptuous dining, a colourful farm store, and cooking classes amongst mango and papaya groves, vegetable, and herb gardens. My visit starts in the bar with Flora Farms’ signature Farmarita made with carrot and orange juices, and tequila, before we tour the property’s gardens, and view the on-site butchers and bakery. Then, more drinks before we are shown traditional methods of making salsas in the cooking class, with plenty of delicious tastings, after which we sit down to a wonderful lunch of Baja fish tacos. From start to finish, the Flora Farms experience is a dreamy feast for the senses.
CHEF’S TABLE, AGUA RESTAURANT ©ONE&ONLY PALMILLA
AGUA AT ONE&ONLY PALMILLA Greeted with a hand-on-heart welcome, literally, by every staff member, the One&Only Palmilla makes you immediately feel at home in the lap of luxury. The menu at Agua offers sumptuous takes on local cuisine. My meal starts with a roasted corn and scallop soup with Huitlacoche foam, then progresses to saffron fettuccine with jumbo blue shrimp and zucchini blossom. Both dishes are stunning in their presentation and off-the-charts tasty – I thought there was no way I could manage dessert, yet I did. My meal ended with a slice of tres leches cake so perfect, served with mocha gelato and a smear of meringue. Heaven. SHRIMP TACO WITH PINEAPPLE PURÉE, AVOCADO RELISH AND PICKLED VEGETABLES, MEZCAL RESTAURANT
THE COFFEE LAB This little downtown Cabo spot serves the best lattes around, made with a range of beans from different regions of Mexico. It’s tucked into a back alley so a little tricky to find, but worth it. There’s a definite hipster vibe – witnessed by the pour-over coffee, and avocado toast and chia pudding on their menu – but their dedication to quality makes this a first-class spot for healthy breakfasts and lunches, and coffee however you take it. There’s not much inside seating, but there is a sweet patio outside if you want to stick around. 56 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
THE BAJA BREWING COMPANY Back in 2007, this craft brewery started small with three beers, and now has three locations in Cabo. Their San José del Cabo cantina, located in the historic arts district, was recently refurbished and offers a great space to sample one of their beers. Their Peyote IPA is a big seller, though Fady El Masri Rojas, of the Baja Brewing Company, quipped that he couldn’t say if there is peyote actually in it – that is a trade secret. They also serve wood-fired pizza and burgers in a fun and lively atmosphere.
TUNA CRUDO IN FERMENTED CHILI SAUCE, MEZCAL RESTAURANT
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 57
DELICIOUSLY AUTHENTIC DINING
TRAVEL AND STAY IN STYLE
SMALLER GROUP CAMARADERIE
SEAMLESS, STRESS-FREE TRAVEL
MAKE TRAVEL MATTER
THIS IS OUR HOME, OUR SEA. ENJOY IT. LET US TAKE YOU CLOSER TO THE AUTHENTIC BEAUTY OF THE MEDITERRANEAN
We were born here. Welcome to our home, the Mediterranean Sea - the scents, the flavours, the sky and all the wonders underneath it. We have the perfect ships to reach every special corner in 13 countries. Be our guest, and get closer to the authentic beauty of the Mediterranean. #ThisIsSilversea
An inspiring experience to support young enthusiasts and their passion for flamenco.
THE CRISTINA HEEREN FOUNDATION SEVILLE, SPAIN
Insight Vacations & TreadRight are supporting this private, local school to ensure the teaching and conservation of the flamenco tradition lives on in the community. Interact with the students, who will share their stories and their passion during a flamenco lesson as you put your rhythm to the test. Share in the dancersâ€™ devotion as you witness emotions come to life in a flamenco performance! LIVE THIS ONE-OF-A-KIND EXPERIENCE ON ONE OF OUR ITINERARIES: HIGHLIGHTS OF SPAIN | SPANISH HERITAGE | AMAZING SPAIN & PORTUGAL | BEST OF SPAIN & PORTUGAL | TREASURES OF SPAIN | PORTUGAL & MOROCCO | GRAND SPAIN & PORTUGAL
$50 CAD OPTIONAL EXPERIENCE VOUCHER* AS ADDED VALUE!
For more information, please contact one of our travel advisors.
Please contact our travel advisors today.
Terms & Conditions: *Valid for Ensemble only. Receive a $50 per person optional experience voucher on trips featured in the 2020 Europe & Britain Brochure. Not applicable to Last Minute Deals, Special Interest or Expert Hosted Itineraries, or East Mediterranean trips. Valid on new bookings only for trips departing between April 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020, and must be booked before May 31, 2020. If the optional experience voucher is not applicable, the dollar value will be applied as savings to the land portion of the trip. A deposit of up to $500 is required within three days of booking and full payment is due up to 120 prior to departure . This offer may be withdrawn at any time. Other conditions may apply. Please quote promo code: PPIVENS50W19 at time of booking. TICO#1873715
The Ocean Victory™ will take you into the world’s most sensitive environments with conscientious attention to
Get ready to set
protecting them. The unique combination of environmental responsibility, exceptional expertise and indulgent comfort is a first in Alaska. 12-day VANCOUVER TO SITKA Ship: Ocean Victory Dates:
$4, 199 USD per person June 11; September 3, 2021 $4,499 USD per person July 2, 23; August 13, 2021 $4,899 USD per person May 21; September 24, 2021
Itinerary: Vancouver, British Columbia • British Columbia Inside Passage • Fjordland (Kynoch Inlet) • Ketchikan / Metlakatla • Misty Fjords National Monument • Wrangell / Stikine River Wilderness • Waterfall Coast / Baraof Wilderness • Petersburg / Le Conte Glacier • Tracy Arm / Sawyer Glacier • Kake/Frederick • Sound/Five Finger • Disembark Sitka, Alaska
F CABIN (price based on double occupancy plus port fees of $549 USD & gratuities of $175 USD and taxes are included in cost) *See terms & conditions for more details.
SPECIAL OFFER Book by March 31, 2020 and receive $50 USD Shipboard credit per person
Whether you’re looking to set sail on a luxe riverboat in Europe or join an expedition vessel in Alaska, our highly trained cruise specialists can help. We offer unique pre-cruise and post-cruise packages, along with ‘On Location Experts’ that enable us to customize shore excursions to enhance your experience. When you book with our specialists, you’ll also enjoy special features, extra amenities and exclusive offers. When it comes to our exclusive collection of ‘Hosted Cruises’, you can expect personalized care and exciting land excursions, as well as complimentary amenities and superb added value features.
ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE: ®
Ensemble® Hosted Cruises (EHC) are an exclusive collection of personalized cruises that will satisfy the most discerning cruiser. Choose from any destination, any cruise style and any price range and you will be sure to find a Hosted Cruise to meet your needs.
EXCLUSIVE AND ONLY FOR ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE GUESTS ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE EXPERIENCE • A private welcome cocktail party • Peace of mind knowing your Ensemble® Host is on the voyage with you
Regardless of your cruise style or budget, we can help find the cruise that’s perfect for you.
• Featuring a complimentary Ensemble® shore excursion
Your Ensemble Travel® Group agency has the knowledge and expertise in finding the right cruise that is right for you! Contact our travel agency now for more information on the entire collection of Ensemble® Hosted Cruises.
Savour the splendor of Alaska with the Finest Cuisine at Sea™ aboard the intimate and luxurious Regatta.
Explore ancient Mediterranean empires during this roundtrip from vibrant Barcelona, with stops in Rome, Piraeus (Athens), Ephesus and Malta.
October 25, 2020
July 30, 2020
$5,725 CAD per person
$3,009 CAD per person
CATEGORY F, OCEAN VIEW (price based on double occupancy plus $241 CAD per person port taxes & fees)
Itinerary: Seward, Alaska • Glaciers of College Fjord • Hubbard Glacier • Icy Strait Point (Hoonah) • Juneau • Haines • Sitka • Ketchikan • Prince Rupert, British Columbia • Inside Passage • Nanaimo • Vancouver, British Columbia
12-day ANCIENT EMPIRES Ship:
11-night FORESTS & FJORDS
Receive up to $50 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom, plus one plate of chocolate dipped strawberries.
*See terms & conditions for more details.
Discover Seabourn’s Alaska. Our unique blend of exhilarating, up-close adventures with luxurious amenities invite you to experience the Great Land in a myriad of ways.
CATEGORY B2 VERANDA (price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees)
*See terms & conditions for more details.
An Unrivaled Experience on the world’s most luxurious ship ever built.
7-night STOCKHOLM TO COPENHAGEN
Seven Seas Explorer
August 21, 2020
July 10, 2020
OCEAN VIEW SUITE
(price based on double occupancy plus $553.44 CAD per person port taxes & fees)
$9,099 CAD per person VERANDA SUITE (price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees)
ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE ®
• • •
Complimentary Ensemble Traveller Cocktail Party Ensemble Traveller Host Complimentary Ensemble Experience Shore Event in Wrangell, Alaska
*See terms & conditions for more details.
7-day ALASKA GLACIERS, FJORDS & INSIDE PASSAGE
$3,909 CAD per person
EXCLUSIVE OFFER Book by May 31, 2020 and receive Canada at Par pricing
*See terms & conditions for more details.
Vacations® • Fall 2019 • 63
DROTTNINGHOLM PALACE SWEDEN
Here are highlights of four fabulous stops that are not to be missed when selecting a Baltic cruise itinerary. ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA Prepare for a treasure trove of over-the-top ornate palaces and cathedrals set along scenic canals. Admire the numerous works of art at the State Hermitage Museum inside the Winter Palace, gawk at the grand interiors of Catherine Palace, and wander the manicured gardens of the Grand Palace at Peterhof. Don’t miss a visit to the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood to see its splendid onion domes and famous mosaics. During the evening, relax in wonder, seeing world-class ballet or traditional dancing Cossacks – if only for the regal pomp of the glorious theatres.
ST. OLAV’S CHURCH TALLIN, ESTONIA
TALLINN, ESTONIA Tallinn is the sleeper surprise of the Baltics and a true delight. Did Disney design this fairy tale place? The Gothic Town Hall Square has cafés and quaint shops, including a 15th-century pharmacy, still in operation. Wander cobblestone streets within the fortress walls and climb the steeple of St. Olav’s Church for a view of red-tile roofs. Village performers dressed in medieval clothing play flutes on street corners to add to the dreamy atmosphere of stepping back into medieval times.
Beauties By Diane Tierney
Cruise the Baltic Sea for bold destinations that make brazen impressions. The Baltic Sea beckons cruisers like never before with its bold and beautiful ports. Whether you’re a culture vulture, architecture aficionado or sophisticated city slicker, the Baltic countries feature cities brimming with both Old World grandeur and charming, quaint character. On a Baltic cruise, you’ll easily circumnavigate the sea in style and, within a week or two, see several sensational countries: Russia, Estonia, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Poland and more. These Baltic countries also have many UNESCO World Heritage sites, many close to port, such as Tallinn’s Old Town or Sweden’s Drottningholm Palace, a well-preserved royal castle. And, in summer, thanks to being in a region of the midnight sun, 64 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN The Swedish capital sits on 14 islands and the Old Town, Gamla Stan, has narrow meandering cobblestone streets, quaint shops, and cafés. Also, visit the Royal Palace, one of the largest palaces in Europe with 600 rooms and five museums. You’ll marvel at the coronation carriages, silver throne, and royal costumes and armour.
the days are extra-long, which adds to the ease of adventures.
SUOMENLINNA FORTRESS HELSINKI, FINLAND
There are many options to take two tours in a day – a city day tour of palaces and an evening at the opera or ballet after dinner. Many of the cities are also very easy to walk if you want to explore on your own.
HELSINKI, FINLAND This city of islands and has the UNESCOlisted Fortress of Suomenlinna with its impressive walls and museums. In town, wander through the open-air market for stalls of goods ranging from fur hats to fresh fish.
Consider choosing a cruise line that offers overnight stays so you can delve deeper into these many-layered destinations. Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, and Viking are terrific options for this region. Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Silversea Cruises also have Baltic sailings in luxury ships that complement the opulent sights you’ll see during the day.
Baltic cruises also stop in Warnemünde, Germany, so you can see Berlin, and relatively new ports include Riga, Latvia and Gda´ nsk in Poland. And, since many Baltic cruises begin and end in Amsterdam or Copenhagen, be sure to spend time seeing the highlights of these quaint ports, perhaps as pre- or post-cruise stays if time allows. CHURCH OF THE SAVIOR ON SPILLED BLOOD ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 65
See the Old World in a New Way. Conquer a continent’s worth of adventures on the
7-day SCENIC ALASKA: INSIDE PASSAGE FROM SEATTLE
newly amplified Allure of the Seas® — sailing the best
of Europe through October.
September 27, 2020 (other departure dates available)
7-night WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN
Itinerary: Seattle, Washington • Juneau, Alaska • Skagway • Cruise Glacier Bay • Ketchikan • Victoria, British Columbia • Seattle, Washington
Allure of the Seas
October 25, 2020
$1,648 CAD per person
Itinerary: Barcelona, Spain • Palma de Mallorca, Spain • Provence (Marseille), France • Florence/Pisa (La Spezia), Italy • Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy • Naples, Italy • Cruising Barcelona, Spain
$1,519 CAD per person
7-night GREEK ISLES
BALCONY (price based on double occupancy plus $137 CAD per person port taxes & fees)
| INSIDE, CATEGORY ID
(price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees)
Receive up to $100 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
*See terms & conditions for more details.
October 4, 2020 (other departure dates available)
Book by May 31, 2020 and receive up to $50 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
Itinerary: Venice, Italy • Kotor, Montenegro • Corfu, Greece • Santorini Island • Mykonos • Argostoli • Split, Croatia • Venice, Italy
$1,393 CAD per person
| INSIDE, CATEGORY IE
(price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees) *See terms & conditions for more details.
Only the small luxury ships of a Silversea Northern European Whether you love art, history, natural wonders,
voyage will take you to the heart of the capital cities, the
fine cuisine, or all of the above, a Mediterranean cruise
nature and the cultures of Northern Europe. Legends,
lets you experience something amazing at every stop.
wonders, visions, and emotions of a deeper view into the Old Continent.
12-night SPAIN, FRANCE & ITALIAN RIVIERA Ship:
11-day LONDON (GREENWICH) TO LISBON
September 16 & October 10, 2020
Itinerary: Barcelona, Spain • Sete, France • Provence (Marseille), France • Ajaccio, Corsica • Nice (Villefranche), France • Santa Margherita, Italy • Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy • Naples, Italy • Valletta, Malta • Palma De Mallorca, Spain • Barcelona, Spain
September 14, 2020
$5,319 CAD per person
(price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees)
AQUACLASS (price based on double occupancy plus $208 CAD per person port taxes & fees)
*See terms & conditions for more details.
EXCLUSIVE OFFER Book an Aqua Class or Concierge Class cabin by April 19, 2020 and receive $100 USD Shore Excursion credit per stateroom
$6,745 USD per person VISTA SUITE
EXCLUSIVE OFFER London
Book by April 30, 2020 and
RECEIVE 10% SAVINGS on Silver Privilege fare on select voyages departing September 1, 2020 onwards
Honfleur Saint Malo EUROPE Bordeaux La Coruna Oporto
*See terms & conditions for more details.
Journey to northern Spain’s Basque Country. The region’s largest city, Bilbao, offers much more than the famed Guggenheim museum. Beyond the city lies La Rioja, renowned in wine circles for some of the best wine produced in the country. 6-night GRAND PRIX Ship:
May 20, 2021
Itinerary: Barcelona, Spain • St. Tropez, France • Monte Carlo, Monaco • Provence (Toulon), France • Barcelona, Spain
$3,099 USD per person CATEGORY 08 (price based on double occupancy plus $122.24 USD per person port taxes & fees)
EXCLUSIVE OFFER Receive $200 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
*See terms & conditions for more details.
From grand abbeys and fortresses perched high above the Danube to plentiful iconic UNESCO World Heritage sites, be romanced by the Danube with all her regal and romantic splendour. This part of the world is a treat for the senses. And the 7-night MELODIES OF THE DANUBE
best way to explore is aboard Norwegian Epic. You’ll
Ship: AmaCerto, AmaLea, AmaPrima, AmaSerena, AmaSonata, AmaViola
treasure stops in picturesque ports like Cannes and
Dates: August 9, November 14 & December 25, 2020
entertainment and dining.
Majorca. And enjoy your time at sea with one-of-a-kind
$3,599 CAD per person CATEGORY E (price based on double occupancy and includes port taxes & fees)
7-day WESTERN MEDITERRANEAN
EXCLUSIVE OFFER Book by May 31, 2020 and receive up to $300 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
TRIPLE SAVINGS OFFER: Book by March 31, 2020 • Save up to $1,200 CAD per person • Receive $50 USD Shipboard credit per person • Complimentary stateroom upgrade on select 2020 sailings
August 16, 2020 (Additional dates available)
$1,364 USD per person BALCONY BF (price based on double occupancy plus $111.80 USD per person port taxes & fees)
Book by April 3, 2020 and receive up to $300 USD Shipboard credit plus, choose up to 5 free offers with Norwegian’s Free at Sea promotion including Unlimited Open Bar.
SPECIAL OFFER Free at Sea: 5 Free Offers* • FREE UNLIMITED OPEN BAR • FREE EXCURSIONS
*See terms & conditions for more details.
*See terms & conditions for more details.
• FREE SPECIALTY DINING • FREE WIFI • FREE KIDS (on select sailings)
From the grandeur of Rome to the glamour of St-Tropez and the UNESCO-chic of Ibiza, fall in love with Italy, France and Spain onboard the all-inclusive Crystal Serenity. 9-night ROMANCING THE RIVIERA Ship:
July 31, 2020
$3,749 USD per person DELUXE STATEROOM WITH LARGE PICTURE WINDOW FORWARD (C3)
Alaska, by Cunard. Breathtaking scenic voyages, immersive Alaska experiences and unforgettable Cunard® style. 10-night ALASKA SAILING Ship:
July 21, 2020
$1,979 USD per person BALCONY BF (Price based on double occupancy. Taxes, fees and port expenses of up to $240 per person are additional and subject to change.)
SPECIAL OFFER 180th Anniversary Sale: Book a balcony stateroom between February 28 – May 18, 2020 and RECEIVE up to $180 USD shipboard credit.
Glacier Bay Skagway Juneau
(price based on double occupancy plus $405 USD per person port taxes & fees)
ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE ®
• • •
Complimentary Ensemble Traveller Cocktail Party Ensemble Traveller Host Complimentary Ensemble Experience Shore Event in St. Tropez
*See terms & conditions for more details.
ENSEMBLE HOSTED CRUISE ®
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Complimentary Ensemble Traveller Cocktail Party Ensemble Traveller Host Complimentary Ensemble Experience Shore Event in Skagway, Alaska
*See terms & conditions for more details.
We invite you to experience an Alaska cruise vacation
EXCLUSIVE! ALL-IN-ONE CRUISE PACKAGES INCLUDING UNLIMITED DRINKS†
as only Princess® can show you. Princess offers a range of enriching Alaska cruise vacation options to see the Great Land’s glaciers, wildlife and national parks from the perspective of spectacular ships, exclusive rail service and Princess Wilderness Lodges.
Italy’s finest Europe’s largest cruise line, Costa Cruise Lines pliés the azure waters of the Mediterranean, offering a special blend of hospitality, cuisine and entertainment, in an unmistakable Italian style. On a Costa cruise, there is no end to fun, with loads of festive activities day and night, plenty of live music and a whole lot of dancing that keeps the party going until the wee hours of the morning.
May through December 2020 sailings
Terms and conditions apply.
August 22, 2020
$4,073 CAD per person BALCONY (price based on double occupancy including $303.51 CAD per person port taxes & fees)
Princess Plus! • Premier Beverage Package with tips† • Unlimited Wi-Fi‡‡ • Full gratuities paid on your behalf‡ *See terms & conditions for more details.
Denali National Park Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge
Book between March 2 and April 30, 2020 and receive
• $100 USD Cruisetour Cash (up to 4 passengers)
• $50 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
Gulf of Alaska
Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge
Prince William Sound Glacier Bay National Park
Ketchikan s as Inside P
All-new this summer, Costa Smeralda! World’s first LNG powered ship.
11-night DENALI EXPLORER CRUISETOUR
Prices displayed are in Canadian or US dollars. They include all government taxes (except HST/GST), fees and port charges if applicable unless otherwise stated. Additional fuel surcharges may apply. Additional agency fee may apply – please ask our Travel Agency for details. Prices stated are per person based on double occupancy and do not include airfare or transfers unless otherwise specified. In cruise bookings, where airfares are included, pre and post accommodations necessary due to flight schedules are at the passenger’s expense. Other conditions may apply and may vary depending on the cruise line or tour operator. We are not responsible for errors or omissions. The Ensemble Travel® Group makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information contained herein and to the best of its knowledge, all information is accurate at time of printing.
Bask in the allure of small ship cruising as you anchor in remarkable small ports such as Dubrovnik and Rovinj to timeless cities like Venice and Rome. Discover the Mediterranean’s most charming and historic destinations in one incomparable voyage.
VICTORY CRUISE LINES: 2021 Ocean Victory Early Booking Discount: Valid on new bookings made by March 31, 2020, for travel between May 1 and October 9, 2021. Save $1,400 U.S. dollars per stateroom ($700 U.S. dollars per person) on the following Ocean Victory 2021 voyages: July 12; August 2, 23. Save $1,200 U.S. dollars per stateroom ($600 U.S. dollars per person) on the following Ocean Victory 2021 voyages: May 1, 31; June 21; July 2, 23; August 13; September 13; October 9. Save $1,000 U.S. dollars per stateroom ($500 U.S. dollars per person) on the following Ocean Victory 2021 voyages: June 11; September 3. Save $900 U.S. dollars per stateroom ($450 U.S. dollars per person) on the following Ocean Victory 2021 voyages: May 21; September 24. Offer details are based on availability, and only while inventory lasts. Excludes cabin category PS on the Ocean Victory. MENTION OFFER CODE: 2021 OCEAN VICTORY EBD. Offer is per person based on double occupancy. No single-supplement offer is available. Transportation to and from embarkation ports is the responsibility of the traveller including airfare and transfers. Promotional fares require full payment due at time of booking, and are listed in U.S. dollars. Onboard credits have no cash value, cannot be applied to gratuities and are non-transferrable. Offer is not valid on existing bookings, is not combinable with other promotions and may be withdrawn or modified at any time without notice. Itineraries are subject to change. Not responsible for errors or omissions. Additional terms, conditions and fees may apply.
8-day CLASSIC ITALY & DALMATIAN COAST Ship:
Dates: May 11; September 20, 2020; July 8, 24; September 21; October 9 & 17, 2021
$3,899 USD per person
OCEAN VIEW (price based on double occupancy plus $162 USD per person port taxes, fees & expenditures)
SPECIAL OFFER Mediterranean Sea SICILY Giardini Naxos
*See terms & conditions for more details.
Dubrovnik MONTENEGRO Kotor
Book by June 30, 2020 and receive up to $200 USD Shipboard credit per stateroom
HOLLAND AMERICA LINE: Fares are based on Promo LG. Featured fares are per person based on double occupancy, cruise or Land+Sea Journeys only. Fares are in Canadian dollars. All savings amounts are included in the fares shown. Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses are included at CAD $241. Subject to availability. For more information about our stateroom categories and suite descriptions, and to view deck plans and for full terms and conditions applicable to your cruise, please refer to hollandamerica.com or the appropriate Holland America brochure. Offers have limited space and may be modified or withdrawn without prior notice. Other restrictions may apply. Ships’ Registry: The Netherlands. SEABOURN: All fares are in CAD dollars, cruise-only, for new bookings only, per guest, double occupancy, and subject to availability. Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses of $553.44 per person are additional. Fares are not combinable with any other offer or discounts, may vary by sailing date, are capacity controlled, and are subject to change without prior notice. All savings amounts are included in fares shown. Certain restrictions apply. Seabourn reserves the right to correct errors. Ships’ registry: Bahamas. ©2020 Seabourn OCEANIA CRUISES: Offers and fares are subject to change on April 1, 2020. All fares are per person in Canadian dollars, valid for residents of Canada, based on double occupancy for new bookings only and may be withdrawn at any time. Free Internet amenity does not include streaming and includes one log-in per stateroom, except Owner’s, Vista & Oceania Suites, which receive two log-ins per suite. Cruise-Only Fares do not include Optional charges as detailed in the Guest Ticket Contract, which may be viewed, along with additional terms, at OceaniaCruises.com. Cruise-Only Fares do not include OLife Choice amenities or airfare. All Fares include government fees & taxes. Oceania Cruises reserves the right to correct errors or omissions and to change any and all fares, fees, promotions and surcharges at any time. Ships’ Registry: Marshall Islands. REGENT SEVEN SEAS CRUISES: All fares are per person in Canadian dollars, valid for residents of Canada, based on double occupancy, for new bookings only and may be increased or withdrawn at any time. Not all promotions are combinable. 2-for-1 Fares are based on published Full Brochure Fares; such fares may not have resulted in actual sales in all suite categories and do not include optional charges as detailed in the Guest Ticket Contract. Fares include additional Bonus Savings. FREE Roundtrip Business Class Air includes ground transfers and applies to intercontinental flights only from the following airports: YUL, YVR, YYZ. Airfare is available from all other U.S. and Canadian gateways for an additional charge. All airline fees, surcharges and government taxes are included; however airline-imposed personal charges such as baggage fees may apply. Custom Air arrangements may be made 270 days prior to sailing (custom air fees apply). FREE Business Class Air applies to intercontinental flights only and FREE Air applies to domestic flights only. Canada at Par Offer: Canadian dollars at par applies to new bookings on Penthouse and below categories on select voyages only made from February 10, 2020 through May 31, 2020 and is available to Canadian residents only. Cancels and rebooks will not be permitted and bookings will be vetted for eligibility. Offer is not combinable with upgrade offers, single specials, other promotions or group pricing, but is combinable with group amenities and will count toward Tour Conductor Credits. Certain restrictions may apply. ROYAL CARIBBEAN: Price is per person, in Canadian dollars, cruise only, applies to select sailings, based on double-occupancy. Shopboard Credit offer is valid for new, named group bookings made in Ensemble Headquarter Groups. Individual reservations may be transferred into an existing group, assuming required criteria are met. Offer includes up to $50 U.S dollars SBC per stateroom. Bookings will be eligible for an additional $50 U.S dollars SBC when group space is named and deposited 6 months prior to sailing. SBC is in U.S dollars, has no cash value, is non-transferable, not redeemable for cash, and will expire if not used by 10:00 PM on the last evening of the cruise. SBC will be applied automatically to all eligible reservations. Prices and offers are subject to availability and change without notice, capacity controlled, and may be withdrawn at any time. Refer to your travel advisor for complete terms. ©2020 Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Ships’ registry: Bahamas.
Explore grand cities and admire stunning scenery on this enchanting cruise. Visit Budapest’s lovely Matthias Church, admire the views from Austria’s Göttweig Abbey, experience Vienna’s café culture and savour German cuisine in Regensburg.
8-day ROMANTIC DANUBE® Ship:
State-of-the-art Viking Longships
Date: November 21, 2021
$2,699 CAD per person
Book by May 31, 2020 and receive $100 CAD Shipboard credit per stateroom
CATEGORY F, STANDARD RIVER-VIEW (Price based on double occupancy. Port taxes & fees included)
CELEBRITY CRUISES: Offer applies to 4-night and longer itineraries that depart now through December 31st, 2021. Bookings must be made by December 31, 2020. Offer excludes Galapagos and future cruise bookings. $100 U.S dollars per stateroom Shore Excursion credit will be applied in the form of an onboard credit. Bookings should be made through Espresso and/or normal reservations methods but must select/request the ENSEMBLEXTRA. Offer is $100 U.S dollars Onboard credit per stateroom for Concierge, and Aqua class cabins. Offers are applicable to new individual bookings and to staterooms in non-contracted group bookings, which must be named and deposited. Guests’ stateroom folios will be credited with an Onboard credit. Onboard credit has no cash value, is applicable to cruise only, non-transferable, not redeemable for cash, and will expire if not used by 10:00 PM on the final night of the cruise. Offer excludes interior, oceanview, standard veranda and suite staterooms. ENSEMBLEXTRA offer combines with Celebrity’s monthly brand offer AND Ensemble Headquarter Groups Benefits for bookings that qualify for each. Single occupancy bookings are eligible for the Offer. Refer to Cruise Ticket Contract for additional terms and conditions. Celebrity reserves the right to cancel the Offer at any time, correct any errors, inaccuracies or omissions, and change or update fares, fees and surcharges at any time without prior notice. ©2020 Celebrity Cruises Inc. Ships’ registry: Malta and Ecuador. TRAVELBRANDS BY ENCORE CRUISES: The prices are per person, cruise only, based on double occupancy in Canadian dollars and were available at time of print, January 9, 2020. They are applicable to new individual reservations only, made at least 120 days prior to departure. The categories indicated above are subject to availability. Onboard credit is per stateroom in USD, has no cash value, is not redeemable for cash, not transferable and will expire if not used by 10:00 pm on the last evening of the cruise. Offer is subject to availability; capacity controlled and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Other restrictions may apply. All references to Norwegian Cruise Line are: © 2020 NCL Corporation Ltd. All rights reserved. Ships’ Registry: The Bahamas and United States of America. For full terms and conditions, see www.travelbrandsagent.com or contact us. SILVERSEA CRUISES: Offer valid on new, individual bookings made between March 1, 2020 through April 30, 2020 on voyages departing from September 1, 2020 onwards. Guests will receive 10% savings on the Silver Privilege fare for select voyages if full payment is received no later than April 30, 2020; full payment includes the cruise fare and any outstanding balances on the booking (air, hotels, transfers and land programs). Offer not valid for Full World Cruise. Bookings made before or after the promotional period will not qualify for the savings. Other restrictions apply. AMA WATERWAYS: Starting prices listed are in CAD. OBC listed in USD. Offer valid on new bookings for the 2020 departures listed above, valid from February 14, 2020 through May 31, 2020. Rates are per person for cruise only based on double occupancy in a Category E (AmaMagna - Category AB; Mekong - Category C). Port fees included. Optional land programs, and airfare are additional; please ask for details. Onboard credit amounts are $300 per stateroom ($150 per person), based on double occupancy (solo travellers receive half). Offer is combinable with current promotions and is applicable to FIT and Group bookings. Some restrictions may apply. Availability is limited on each cruise and the offer is subject to change or discontinuation without notice. CST#2065452-20. *Wave Terms: All rates are per person for cruise only, based on double occupancy in an E category stateroom for Europe, BB (AB category for AmaMagna) for Holiday Cruises, and C for Mekong,
*See terms & conditions for more details.
unless stated otherwise. Promotional rates are valid on select sailings for new bookings only made from January 1 - March 31, 2020. Savings are per stateroom, based on double occupancy, and varies by itinerary and sailing date. Complimentary upgrades applies to one category upgrade, based on a like-for-like stateroom category, and excludes suites ; upgrades for Holiday cruises are applicable to categories BB – AB (AB – SB for AmaMagna). Onboard credit of $100 per stateroom ($50 per person) is based on double occupancy in USD and can be applied towards all onboard purchases. Offers are combinable with AmaWaterways’ Past Passenger Privilege Program and Future Cruise Benefit Program. Offers are not combinable with any other promotions, limited to availability, capacity controlled and subject to change/ termination without notice. Port charges, optional land programs, airfares and gratuities are additional. Other restrictions apply. Most Christmas markets open during the last week of November until approximately Dec. 22. Check with each country’s tourist office for more information. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California. CST#2065452-20. AZAMARA: Amenity offer Shipboard Credit (SBC) is in U.S dollars, has no cash value, is not redeemable for cash, not transferable and will expire if not used by 10:00 pm on the last evening of the cruise. OBC is valid for new individual FIT bookings only made in Club Oceanview staterooms or above. Must select price program “Amenity ENS” for OBC to be applied at time of booking. Offer not available to Groups. Offer is not combinable with other SBC offers. Singles paying 200% receive the full stateroom amount. Offers are subject to change and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Certain restrictions apply. Canada Agencies: This offer is not valid for bookings made through a Tour Operator. For additional details on the current offer, please refer to Azamara.com and the Cruise Ticket Contract for additional terms and conditions or contact your travel professional. Azamara® is a proud member of the Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. family of cruise lines. NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE: Valid on 3+ night sailings. Free at Sea choice(s) must be selected at least 24 hours prior to sailing and cannot be changed on board. Bookings made within 24 of departure can choose promotion at the time of booking. Balcony Stateroom and above bookings receive all 5 offers; Oceanview Staterooms choose 2; Studio & Insides choose 1. Gratuities, Beverage and Specialty Service Charges may apply. Significant details and limitations apply to Free at Sea offers: Free Unlimited Open Bar, Free Specialty Dining Package, Free WiFi, Free Shore Excursions, Friends & Family Sail Free (on select sailings). 20% gratuities apply to Free Unlimited Open Bar and Specialty Dining. Pricing is per person based on double occupancy and is subject to change. Not applicable to categories IX, OX, BX or MX. Offer is capacity controlled and can be withdrawn at any time. Singles paying 200% of voyage fare qualify. Anything consumed above the promotional benefit will be the responsibility of the guest at prevailing rates. Guest cannot substitute or customize this offer. All guests in stateroom must choose same offer. Government taxes, port expenses & fees, discretionary onboard service charges and/or gratuities are additional. Cancellation Fees also apply based on the booking/sailing date; therefore, Norwegian Cruise Line strongly recommends the purchase of travel protection on all bookings. This is a cruise only offer. This promotion is not applicable on the land portion of Cruisetours or bundles. No components included in this offer have any monetary value, are non-refundable and non-transferable. Offer and combinability with other promotional offers is subject to change at any time per Norwegian Cruise Line’s discretion. Other restrictions may apply. Norwegian Cruise Line reserves the right to cancel or withdraw this offer at any time. For full terms and conditions please contact your travel professional. © 2020 NCL Corporation Ltd. Ships’ Registry: Bahamas and USA. CRYSTAL CRUISES: All fares are cruise only, in U.S. dollars and do not include taxes, fees, and port charges of $405 per person. Brochure Fares and Book Now Fares are per person based on double occupancy. Your Low Solo Fares (when shown) are per person based on single occupancy; Flex Fares (when shown) are per person based on double occupancy (third berth not available). Book Now Savings are subject to availability at time of booking. Book Now Fares and Low Solo Fares include Crystal Savings and do not include Crystal Society or Early Full Payment savings. Early Full Payment saving is based on the fare after all other discounts are applied. Select voyages offered as “Grand Journey” sailings are a combination of individual cruise segments and adhere to policies and procedures set forth per segment, including but not limited to embarkation/disembarkation, dress codes and theme cruise programming. Ask for details. Optional Personal Select Air Program is available to purchase for full-fare, full-cruise guests whose travel originates from a U.S. or Canadian airport and includes all government taxes and fees. Note: Early Full Payment savings do not apply to Personal select Air. All promotions, offers and discounts including but not limited to Crystal Society savings and Onboard Booking discounts apply to first two full-fare guests only in stateroom or suite, are not combinable with other promotions, capacity controlled, subject to availability and may be withdrawn or changed at any time without notice. For complete Cruise Fare and Promotional Information and General Ticket Terms and Conditions, contact your travel advisor. Crystal Cruises, LLC reserves the right to correct errors or omissions and change any and all fares, fees, promotions and programs at any time without notice. TRANSAT: †Brindiamo beverage package, applies to all stateroom categories with inclusions only. The Brindiamo served by the glass includes specialty coffee, tea, juice, water and soft drinks, non-alcoholic cocktails, spirits, liqueurs, beer and wine. Premium brands not included. Kids ages 3-17 receive non-alcoholic beverage package unlimited by the glass. Drink package is only for consumption in bars, lounges and restaurants. Minibar and room service beverages are not included. Valid for all guests 3 years and older sharing the same stateroom. The service charge on the drinks are included. For full descriptions, offer details and terms and conditions, refer to transat.com. Transat is a division of Transat Tours Canada Inc., and is registered as a travel wholesaler in Ontario (#50009486) with offices at 191 The West Mall, Suite 800, Etobicoke, ON M9C 5K8; in British Columbia (#2454) with offices at 2175 West 41st Ave., Vancouver, BC V6M 1Z6; and in Quebec (#754241) with offices at 300 Leo-Pariseau, Suite 500, Montreal, QC H2X 4C2. CUNARD: $2,768 fare is based on category BF on Queen Elizabeth Cunard July 21, 2020 sailing, on a space-available basis at time of booking. Fares for other dates may vary. Fares are per person, non-air, cruise-only, based on double occupancy and apply to the first two guests in a stateroom. These fares do not apply to singles or third/fourth-berth guests. This offer is capacity controlled and may not be combinable with any other public, group or past guest discount, including onboard credits. Offer is not transferable and is available to residents of the 50 United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the District of Columbia who are 21 years of age or older and receive this offer. Fares quoted in Canadian dollars. Please refer to your travel agent for terms, conditions and definitions that apply to all bookings. Offer may combine with other offers such as group onboard credits, limited time offers and Military benefits. ©2020 Cunard. PRINCESS CRUISES: Certain restrictions apply, please refer to our travel advisor for complete terms, conditions and definitions that apply to all bookings. Offer valid March 2, 2020 to April 30, 2020. Fares quoted in Canadian dollars. Offer may combine with other offers such as group onboard credits, limited time offers and Military benefits. ^Cruisetour Cash of up to $400 U.S dollars per room is based on $100 U.S dollars per person for up to 4 guests per cabin and is presented as a voucher on the first stop on land tour, single occupancy will receive the per person amount, promotion does not combine with Flash, Casino, Past Passenger and other recipient only fares. Offer is available for new bookings for tour FA4 only for any 2020 departure. Other restrictions may apply. Promo code ZCE. ©2020, Princess Cruise Lines, Ltd. Ships of Bermudan and British registry. WINDSTAR CRUISES: All fares mentioned are per person, in U.S dollars; cruise only, based on double occupancy in lowest category, and include non-discountable amounts. Suggested onboard gratuities are extra. Taxes, Fees & Port Expenses are additional. Unless otherwise specified, Windstar is offering on select cruises a shipboard credit (SBC) in the amount of $100 U.S Dollars per person, subject to a maximum of $200 U.S Dollars per stateroom or suite. Single fares will earn a $100 U.S Dollars SBC. Consult your Windstar representative for promotional offer or discount combinability. Bookings are non-transferable; no name changes can be made nor can this offer be applied retroactively. Cancellation fees may apply, please see website for details. Certain restrictions apply. Fuel surcharges may be imposed or increased over time. Information contained herein is accurate at the time of publication and subject to change without notice. All terms and conditions stated on the Windstar website apply. Cruise is provided subject to the terms and conditions of the Passage Contract. Offer expires on June 30, 2020. Ships’ registry: Bahamas. VIKING: $100 CAD shipboard credit per stateroom valid as of September 2, 2019 on 2020/2021 sailings of Romantic Danube. Offer combinable with Past Passenger discounts, and EBD offer. Offer is not combinable with Group Rates, Future Cruise Credit vouchers, FAM, Travel Agent Reduce Rate, Interline, and Wholesale bookings. Limit $100 CAD per stateroom. Shipboard credit must be requested by travel agent at the time of booking. Shipboard credit cannot be applied towards onboard gratuities. No cash value. Shipboard credit offer expires May 31, 2020. CST# 2052644-40
Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 73
Jazz Festivals Jazz lovers unite from Cape Town to Copenhagen and beyond.
By Tim Johnson
Originating a little more than a century ago, deep in the American South, jazz – with its flowing improvisation, freewheeling melodies and swinging beats – has morphed, shifted and, taken on a broad spectrum of local variations. Crossing continents and oceans, it has become a favourite, in its various forms, all around the world. Here are some of the best places to enjoy it, in amazing destinations hosting some of the top jazz festivals on earth. CAPE TOWN INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL March 27-28, 2020 Sandwiched between the soaring eminence of Table Mountain and blue waves of the South Atlantic Ocean, the setting is stunning for the largest music festival in Sub-Saharan Africa. The ultimate port city, set on the trade winds with centuries of sailors blowing through from the four corners of the world, the line-up at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival reflects that global nature, with past events hosting such diverse acts as Cuba’s Buena Vista Social Club, R&B legend Lauryn Hill, and even Toronto’s BadBadNotGood. But, known as “Africa’s Grandest Gathering,” emphasis is placed on local and regional groups and artists – last year’s event included the Soweto Gospel Choir, and Shekinah, who vaulted from competing on an American Idol-style singing show to an award-winning pop and R&B career. FESTIVAL INTERNATIONAL DE JAZZ DE MONTRÉAL June 25-July 4, 2020 This list wouldn’t be complete without this festival, the largest in the world. Founded back in 1980, it now attracts as many as two million people to see 3,000 performers from 30 countries perform across the downtown core of the city. Take in a cozy show at a club or join one of the massive outdoor concerts – past artists have included major international stars, as well as Canadian favourites Walk Off the Earth and Norah Jones.
74 • Vacations ® • Spring 2020
COPENHAGEN JAZZ FESTIVAL July 3-12, 2020 This festival traces its roots back to the 1950s and 1960s when a number of jazz artists made Copenhagen their home and transformed it into the European jazz capital. Take in a show at the Royal Danish Theatre or in the fresh air along the harbour, or at a free show at one of the city’s many funky coffeehouses. The festival also offers an official line-up called Something Else, which includes a variety of music from other genres. TOKYO JAZZ FESTIVAL September 2020 Who knew that Japan loves jazz? The country has even developed its own form of the music, known as Japanese Jazz, which blends smooth stanzas with homegrown cultural and historical elements (and artists). Held in the district of Shibuya – home to the famous Shibuya Crossing intersection, lit up at night by a million lights and scramble-crossed by thousands every day – the Tokyo Jazz Festival includes a line-up that mixes the local form of the genre, international stars, and everything in between.
SAXOPHONIST Vacations® • Spring 2020 • 75
TO OUR VALUED CLIENTS Leave ordinary behind and let us take you on the adventure of a lifetime, a luxurious sun vacation or a unique cruise anywhere your heart desires. Relieve the anxiety of planning your vacation and focus on the fun of exploring, dreaming and discovering where you will go. Our trusted advisors will guide you through your customized travel itinerary, recommend great locations and even let you in on a few travel tips from their own experience. If you are intrigued by any of the articles presented in our magazine or any other travel experiences you are planning, we are ready to design tailored vacations just for you.
E-GEN COV PRINTED IN CANADA