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Travelers Insider Cruise Ship Recipes Cook like a cruise ship chef.

London Calling Planning a budget vacation Land of Kingdoms Rajasthan, India

Travel Style What’s trending in travel fashion. Luxury in the Antarctica Experience the Antarctica like never before.

Oahu – Foodies Paradise The best restaurants on Oahu.

Table of Contents

London Calling ….. 3 Travel Style ….. 7

Cruise Ship Recipes ….. 9 Land of Kingdoms ….. 14

Luxury in the Antarctica ….. 16 Lounge Buddy ….. 17

Good Morning Sunshine ….. 18

Oahu – Foodies Paradise ….. 20 Contact Us ….. 22

Submit Your Story ….. 22

London Calling Planning a budget vacation.


London is one of the greatest cities in the world but also one of the most expensive to visit. That is why doing your research is vital when traveling on a tight budget. Your two biggest expenses are going to be your airfare and your accommodations. With your airfare there are a couple ways is save a few dollars. First is when you travel there are three travel seasons, peak season, off season, and shoulder season. Of course the cheapest time to travel will be during the off season but remember it is the “off season” for a reason. It falls during the winter months so the weather may be an issue. However if you don’t mind the cold, sometimes extreme cold, or a little rain or snow, the off season may be just right for you. The peak season falls during the summer months when the kids are out of school and the

weather is nice. However you will pay a premium for this nice weather since this is the most expensive time to fly. The shoulder season falls during the spring and fall months. The weather can go either way, sometimes is warm and summer like, other times it is cool and chilly. But the fares are descent so it’s kind of a happy medium between the peak and off seasons. If you travel during shoulder season try to get as close to peak season as your budget will allow. This way you will get a good fare and well as good weather.


ACCOMMODATIONS You are going to want to stay away from big name hotels and focus on privately owned hotels, guest hotels, bed & breakfasts and apartments. Most people automatically rule out apartments but you can get some really good deals that are much cheaper than staying in a hotel, especially if you will be traveling with someone else who will be paying for their own expenses. Stay away from accommodations that rent per person, per night verses just by the night or week. Paying per person can add up real fast plus if you are sharing a room with someone who will be paying for themselves you can split the cost of a rented per night accommodation. Also to save on expenses look for a place that includes a free breakfast or in the case of an apartment, you could pick up a few groceries and make your own breakfast before heading out for the day which would save you money. You could also have dinner in the apartment upon returning in the evening which would save you from having to eat out and would help save even more. The less you eat out the more you save.

When booking an accommodation look at its location on Google maps to make sure it is in a location suitable to your needs. It is near an underground (subway or tube) station. It is close to or easily accessible to the train station if you will be using the train. You should also look at the reviews to make sure it is in a good area or that there is not a re-occurring complaint about it. Keep in mind there will always be someone who won’t be happy with it so don’t freak out about a couple of negative feedbacks but if there is a re-occurring theme you may want to pay attention to it.

Guest Hotels – are very similar to bed & breakfasts. They just have more rooms. They usually include a full breakfast, have no elevator and can be either en-suite or not so make sure you know before you book.


Bed & Breakfast – are a great option when traveling on a budget. You can find some great deals, they include a full breakfast, they are prices per night and rooms can come in either en-suite or with a shared bathroom so again if you want your own bathroom make sure you are booking an en-suite room. Not all bed & breakfasts may offer them so make sure you check. If you do have to share a bathroom and you have never stayed in a B&B before, it’s probably not as bad as you think. It’s not like the entire house is sharing one bathroom and you will be standing in line outside the bathroom door forever waiting for your turn to get in. Which is how I pictured it my first time. There is usually a bathroom on each floor for the occupants of that floor and there will only be two or three rooms (usually) per floor and they may not all be filled. Remember this is a B&B not a hotel, they will only have a small number of guests at one time. They won’t have an elevator so keep that in mind when your packing. Staying at a B&B is like staying with friends, you get your own bedroom, you see everyone at breakfast, chat around the breakfast tables and then your off to explore the city. It’s comfortable.

Apartments – are a great option. Not only are they fun to stay in because it gives you the feeling of living like a local but also by having a full kitchen you can stock up the fridge and save money by eating meals at “home.” You can also keep plenty of cold drinks and snacks around which will also save money. Apartments are also rented by the night or week verses per person. We found a nice double studio apartment near Paddington train station for $725 for a 6 night stay in mid May (2014). For a hotel at the same time prices are running about $931 and up. Keep in mind this does not include a kitchen which will save you on your food expenses.


Sightseeing Your sightseeing expenses can add up real fast if you’re not careful. Entrance fees to popular tourist sites can be fairly high, for example it will cost you $31.10 to get into see the Tower of London and $25.52 to see Hamptons Court and if you are paying for more than one person that adds up quickly . While there may be a few of these on your “must see” list look for other less expensive but just as interesting things to see and do. For example the British Museum, one of the best museums in the world (in my opinion), is free. Don’t forget the changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace which takes place daily during the warmer months and every other day during the winter at 11:30 am, it is quite a show you won’t want to miss and it’s free to watch. You can visit the Houses of Parliament and if you reserve ahead you can even sit in and watch the antics during a session of Parliament. There is a long list of museums and galleries that are free as well. So do your research before you go, plan out your daily itinerary, it’s ok to be flexible but by having a pre-planned itinerary it will save you time and money.

Eating Out

When figuring out your food budget it’s usually safe to assume it will cost you about the same as if you eat out at home and then just to be sure you may want to add a little cushion to the budget. There are plenty of places to eat in London that won’t break your budget. There is no shortage of fast food restaurants. Deli’s are also a great option for a good meal at a reasonable price and there are plenty of “mom & pop” style places to eat. My favorite thing to do for a meal is grab a couple of sandwiches from the deli and have a picnic in the park. London has some spectacular parks and it’s a great way to take a break especially if you are traveling with kids. Take a small inflatable ball or Frisbee with you and let the kids unwind for a while in the park.


Travel Style

Lightweight, stretchable, and reversible denim jeans, not only are they comfortable but they also give you double the wardrobe options. They are available in 3 color combinations, black/cheetah grey, black/ simmer charcoal and navy/cobalt. Available from TravelSmith for $99.00

This wrinkle free dress can easily be worn casually or dressed up by adding a belt or scarf. It’s perfect for women of all shapes and will take up little room in your suitcase. It comes in four colors and is available from J.Jills for $129.00

This lightweight, water and stain resistance vest contains 17 interior pockets, making it unnecessary for you to carry a purse and leaving you hands free. It conveniently folds up into its own back pocket for easy carrying. Available in 3 colors from Packing Light for $112.50


The checkpoint friendly designed backpack lets you simply unzip it, lay it flat and place it through the x-ray machine. It has a back strap so you can attack it to the handle of a suitcase. The Samsonite Xenon 2 Checkpoint Friendly Laptop Backpack is available from Samsonite for $42.29

Anti – Theft Cross Body Bag has locking compartments and cut proof strap. The adjustable strap has a LED light for added convenience and safety. Available in three colors. By Travelon and available at Kohls for $44.99

This Travelon wheeled bag fits perfectly underneath an airplane seat. It has a back strap so it can be attached to your luggage handle and folds up for easy storage. Ebags $63.89

The Surge Plus provides protection for all your mobile devices. In addition to three AC outlets there are also two USB ports. It swivels 360 degrees and has four locking positions. Amazon $27.73

Why take up precious counter space with all your bottles? This hanging tote will attach to a door or towel rack and is a great way to organize your toiletries. BackCountry $34.95


Cruise Ship Recipes One of the best things about cruising is the amazing food served on board. Cruise lines are focusing on offering passengers a wide variety of food options including upscale specialty restaurants with top of the line chefs. On some cruise ships you can even get “hands on” by take a cooking class with one of the ships chef’s. When you hear people talking about their cruise the incredible food always seems to be a highlight, the mid-night buffets, never ending desert bar, the baked Alaska, lobster, the perfectly cooked steak. Now you can try a few cruise ship recipes right at home.

Royal Caribbean’s Red Velvet Cupcake Ingredients Cupcakes:            

2 ½ cups (580 g) all-purpose flour 2 table spoons (30 g) unsweetened cocoa powder 2 teaspoons (10 g) baking powder ½ teaspoon (2.5g) baking soda ½ teaspoon (2.5 g) salt ½ cup (120 ml) buttermilk or milk ½ cup (120 ml) vegetable oil 1 teaspoon (5 ml) red gel paste food coloring 1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract ½ cup (115 g) unsalted butter, softened 1 cup (235 g) sugar 3 eggs


(Royal Caribbean Red Velvet Cupcake Cont.)

Frosting: 1 batch vanilla cream cheese frosting Garnish: White chocolate curls 1 red velvet cupcake crumbled Directions     

Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C

Line muffin cups with chosen paper liners.

Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium-size bowl and whisk.

In a small bowl, combine buttermilk, vegetable oil, red

gel paste food coloring and vanilla extract and mix well. In a medium bowl, with an electric mixer at medium

speed, beat butter and sugar for about 4 minutes until creamy and light in color.

Incorporate eggs, one at a time, beating well. Reduce

speed to low and slowly incorporate flour mixture and 

buttermilk mixture. Beat for 2 minutes or until well mixed.

Spoon half of the batter into plastic sandwich bag. Snip a ¼ inch corner from the bag and fill the liners two-

  

thirds full. Repeat operation until all the batter has been used.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out clean.

Remove cupcakes from the baking pan and let cool on a wire rack. Set one aside for garnish.

Spoon vanilla cream cheese frosting into a piping bag or sandwich bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe icing

onto each cupcake, swirl the tip with your wrist as you pull up to form a peak.

Garnish cupcakes with white chocolate curls around the edges and sprinkle the tops with red velvet cupcake crumbs.

Crystal Cruises Chocolate Truffles with Orange and Grand Marnier Flavors

1 cup heavy cream 18 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped, plus 2 ounces chopped separately grated zest of 1/2 orange, blanched juice of half orange 1 cup Grand Marnier 1/3 cup unsalted butter unsweetened cocoa powder for coating (makes 2 1/2 dozen truffles)

Preparation In a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a boil. Add the 18 ounces chopped chocolate and stir until melted and smooth. Add the blanched zest, juice, Grand Marnier, and butter and stir until thoroughly mixed. Let cool. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Remove the truffle mixture from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, in a doubleboiler, melt the reserved 2 ounces chopped chocolate over barely simmering water, stirring until smooth. Form teaspoonfuls of the truffle mixture into one-inch-diameter balls. Using a wooden skewer, dip the truffles into the melter chocolate. Roll in the cocoa powder. Repeat to dip and coat the remaining truffles. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


Disney Cruises Chocolate Lava Cake Recipe

Celebrity Cruise Line’s Eureka Signature Drink

1 lb Unsalted Butter 7 oz Chocolate 6 oz Whole Egg 4 oz Granulated Sugar 3 oz Flour 3 oz Egg Yolk

The Eureka is the signature drink served at the Sunset Bar on the Celebrity Solstice.



Yield: 14 portions

Melt butter in a bain Marie. Add chocolate to melt.

Whisk egg yolks, whole egg and sugar together gently. Add to above. Add sieved flour to above. Place mixture in small moulds flexi pans approx 3oz per mould. Bake for approximately 14 mins at 380°F

Prep Time: 5 minutes Total Time: 5 minutes

    

1.5 ounces of Bombay Sapphire Gin 0.5 ounce of Triple Sec 5 ounces of white Ocean Spray cranberry juice 3 fresh basil leaves 4, 1/2 inch cubes of fresh cucumber

Preparation: Muddle the cucumber and basil leaves together in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add the remaining ingredients and ice; shake and pour into a highball glass. Garnish with a wedge of cucumber


Holland America’s Famous Pasta Dish


Ingredients: 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling 1 clove minced garlic 1/2 cup diced onion 1/4 cup copped fresh thyme leaves 1/3 cup diced celery 1/3 cup diced carrot 1/3 cup diced leek (white part only) 6 ripe medium tomatoes: peeled, seeded & chopped Salt & pepper to taste 1 pound thin linguini 1/2 pound rock shrimp peeled 1/2 pound sea scallops 1 (6 ounce) package precooked frozen baby shrimp, thawed 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 4 large sprigs basil

In a medium skillet, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic, onion and thyme. Cook, stirring, until onion becomes softened and translucent. Do not let the onion brown. Add celery, carrot and leeks. Cook, stirring until all shrimp turns pink, about 2 minutes. Add baby shrimp and heat for 2 to 3 additional minutes. Add reserved sauce and pasta and mix thoroughly. Divide linguini among plates. Sprinkle with parsley and garnish with basil springs. Serve immediately

Ingredients Chilled Soup:          

1 small stick cinnamon 1 clove 1 sprig fresh thyme 5 apples, peeled cored and cubed 3 large carrots, peeled and cubed 1 teaspoon (5 g) ground nutmeg ½ teaspoon (2.5 g) lemon zest Juice of half lemon 2 cups (480 ml) apple juice ½ cup (60 ml) Champagne or sparkling wine

Garnish:     

2 tablespoons (30 g) coarse white sugar 1 teaspoon (5 g) ground cinnamon ⅓ cup (85 g) sour cream 1 small carrot, peeled and julienned Chervil sprigs


(Royal Caribbean – Chilled Carrot

Apple Soup Cont.)

Directions  

   

Wrap cinnamon, clove and thyme in a cheesecloth sachet. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine all ingredients except apple sauce and Champagne and simmer for 20 minutes or until both carrots and apples are soft to the touch. Discard spice sachet and transfer mixture into a food processor. Blend until smooth. Add apple sauce and mix well. Refrigerate in a glass or stainless steel bowl for 4 hours. Finish the soup by incorporating Champagne. In a small glass or stainless steel bowl, mix cinnamon and sugar together. Ladle soup into chilled bowls. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and finish with julienned carrot and chervil.

Serves: 6

Celebrity Cruise Line’s Raspberry Chocolate Tart.

(Serves 6) Ingredients: 6 three-inch tart shells (store-bought) 1 lb. fresh raspberries chocolate ganache 5 oz. dark chocolate 5oz. heavy cream 6 ea. fresh mint powdered sugar shaved white chocolate, as needed Place raspberries in bottom of tart shell.

Ganache: boil heavy cream and mix in dark chocolate. Place ganache on top of raspberries just up to top of tart. Place filled tart shells in refrigerator until set. Garnish with raspberries, shaved white chocolate and mint; dust with powdered sugar.


Land of Kingdoms Rajasthan, India

Rajasthan is famous for its intricately carved temples, forts, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries. It is the largest state in India and despite its harsh terrain it is home to a large number of mammals and birds. Ranthambhor National Park provides spectacular views of those majestic tigers visitors long to see. Located in Eastern Rajasthan, the park provides dramatic landscapes which add to your wildlife viewing pleasure. In addition to the tigers at Ranthambhor National Park you will also see a variety of birds including owlets, the ubiquitous langur (monkey), leopard, caracal, hyena, jackal, jungle cat, marsh crocodiles, wild boar, bears and various species of deer.


The Architecture Rajasthan is also home to some truly incredible architecture. Hawa Mahal The architecture in Rajasthan is a modern wonder. The Hawa Mahal or Palace or the Winds, was built in 1798, stands fifty feet high and has 953 small windows. The lattice work was created so that the royal ladies could observe everyday life out on the street without being seen, since they were not allowed to show their faces in public. The pink and red sandstone keep in harmony with other Monuments in the city.

Mahadev Temple This 12th century temple is the oldest temple in Goa, India. The temple was built in the Hemadpanthi style and carried across the mountains and then carved by craftsmen’s. The ornate temple was built about 1112 by Mahadeva, a commander in the army. The details and craftsmanship that that has gone into this temple is truly amazing. You will spend hours just staring in amazement of it.

Amber Fort Amer town was called Dhundar during medieval times, which means sacrificial mount when Kachwahas were ruling this region from 11th century to 18th Century. Amber Fort (pronounced Amer) is overlooking the beautiful lake Maota. The red stone and marble fort which sits on top of a hill side has four levels with each level having its own courtyard.


Luxury in the


For the ultimate luxury Antarctic experience it will be hard to beat White Desert, a company launched by polar adventurer Patrick Woodhead. This once in a lifetime journey begins with a flight on board from Cape Town across the Southern Ocean to Whichaway Camp, a solar and wind powered base with six state of the art sleep pods. Guests are given a number of excursions to choose from each day ranging from relaxing to heart pounding. Including ice cave exploring, Adelie Penguin viewing, picnics and visits to local science bases. So whether you want to explore virgin peaks or just sit and enjoy the view White Desert will make your Antarctica vacation a trip of you will never forget.

If you have done any traveling most likely you have experienced those long wait times at the airport. With connecting flights it seems like you either have almost no time to between your connecting flights leaving you running to your gate or little room for delayed flights before you miss your connection or you end up with a long and boring layover. When you have a long layover of several hours airport lounges can be your little slice of heaven. With comfortable chairs, couches, TV’s, great views of the tarmac, internet, food, drinks, magazines, bathrooms, and sometimes even showers, you will find a quiet, place to relax and help pass the time. But which airport lounges are you allow to go into? Do you have to pay to get in? The LoungeBuddy App will answer these questions, among others, for you.

You simply fill out a profile with your frequent flyer info, elite status, credit cards, memberships along with your itinerary and LoungeBuddy will not only determine which lounges you can access but also if there will be a fee to get in and how much that fee will be. The app will also let you browse photos of the lounge, review a list of amenities as well as travelers personal reviews. The app is available at the app store for free.


Good Morning Sunshine! Carnival cruise line’s Carnival Destiny has made a complete transformation with a $155 million dollar makeover. The 3,006 passenger vessel Destiny renamed the Carnival Sunshine, now feels much more like the Carnival Magic and Carnival Breeze. The main entertainment comes in the form of three polished production shows in the Palladium Show lounge. The fast pace, high energy comedy show takes places in the Punchliner Comedy Club which features up and coming comedians brought in by none other than comedian George Lopez himself. Appearing for the first time on Carnival, Asian eatery Jili is a hit with each table having a designated director who helps diners navigate through Pan-Asian appetizers, main dishes and side dishes.

For just $12 you can enjoy Jili’s excellent selection of pork and beef dishes as well as a nice selection of vegetarian items. If want a few laughs while you enjoy a bite to eat the Punchliner Comedy Club serves a nice brunch on sea days. While the jokes are funny it’s also fun trying to explain the jokes to your international server. The Sunshine has a Caribbean flavor to it, from the tequilas at Blue Iguana to the rums at the Red Frog. The subtle tropical colors are echoed in the public area and the in the stateroom décor. There is nothing subtle about the new WaterWorks water park. With three adrenaline rushing water slides that have excited cruisers lining up to conquer the 334 foot long Twister.


There is a play are that caters to younger passengers, who yell with excitement as a 150 gallon bucket of water dumps on them. Above the ship, the suspended ropes course is a favorite of cruisers. At the opposite end of the ship you will find the Serenity, the complimentary adults only retreat with a pool, whirlpool and plush chaise lounges and chairs. Adults can sit back and enjoy the relaxing sight and sound of Serenity’s waterfall and fabulous views. In the evenings, popular movies are shown on the poolside 270 square foot, high-tech LED screen. You can also enjoy the Liquid Lounge nightclub that rocks well into the night. With so many activities, clever use of space and creative layout guests spread out throughout the ship so there is no feeling of overcrowding or long lines.


Oahu – Foodies Paradise _________________________ Oahu is sizzling with culinary innovations and new eateries, with everything from ingenious pop restaurants to farm-to-table cuisine. Visitors are finding a wide variety of tastes from around the island. According to Stacey Martin Alford, director of travel industry sales for Oahu Visitors Bureau, chefs and restaurants owners from around the island are committed to sustainability as they support local farmers, ranchers and fishermen who produce a variety of quality, homegrown ingredients. There are a lot of new, exciting restaurants popping up outside of the typical tourist areas. For example, the pop-up venue Taste where chefs rotate in and out each day creating fresh new menus each day both delighting and surprising diners. Taste is located in Kakaako, an emerging urban neighborhood located between Waikiki and downtown Honolulu. In the same neighborhood you will find Alford who send visitors to monthly gatherings called Discover Kakaako, where you will discover some of the islands best food trucks

along with street vendors, entertainment and new events such as Eat the Street and Honolulu Night Market. On the 36th floor of the Ala Moana Hotel you will find the Signature Prime Steak and Seafood restaurant. Diners can enjoy the incredible views of the skyline along with the classic steakhouse menu. Park is another new restaurant in the Oahu culinary scene. Making its home at the Lotus Honolulu, it features original art pieces and intricate interior design. The restaurant serves Mediterranean dishes and supports the


local market by using organic and locally grown ingredients whenever possible. Bordering Waikiki, newcomer Wada Restaurant is serving up Japanese cuisine by combining a progression of yakiniku and kaiseki courses. For a more traditional menu guests may want to try Ko Restaurant and Bar which is nearby in Kaimuki.

Kauai prawns, sea asparagus, seaweed and Hawaii-made sea salt, all served in a contemporary, ocean-inspired ambience.

(Paakai restaurant) (Wada Restaurant)

Chef Chai Chaowasaree’s restaurant Chef Chai, located in the Pacifica Honolulu building between the downtown district and Waikiki, it features an intimate setting and upscale modern dÊcor. On the menu you will find a combination of fresh Hawaiian ingredients and exotic Asian flavors. At the Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore is the Paakai restaurant which features sea-totable cuisine, part of the hotel’s effort to use locally sourced and inspired dishes. The menu features fresh island fish, farm-raised lobster,

Waikiki will be gaining two new restaurants in 2016 with the opening of the Ritz-Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach. The 37 story condominium hotel tower will be home to the first U.S. located Sushi Sho, a Japan based restaurant known for its Edostyle sushi. The BLT Market will be a farmto-table style restaurant with seasonal ingredients from local and regional areas of Hawaii. Oahu is evolving into one of the most exciting places to eat in the nation and if they stay on trend soon a must stop for foodies worldwide.



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Exploring the world. Travel tips, stories, reviews and fun facts.


Exploring the world. Travel tips, stories, reviews and fun facts.