• Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton
    Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton

New Flights to the USA

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

Norwegian, the low cost carrier, has announced the following new destinations:

A service to Denver, which starts on September 16, will run year-round, operating twice-weekly (on Tuesdays and Saturdays) during the summer season but increasing to a three-times-weekly service in the winter, with an additional Thursday departure.

From September 17, the low-cost carrier will commence a year-round service to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Four weekly flights will operate on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Fares for both routes start from £199.

Both routes will be serviced by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft, which has up to 344 seats in two cabins – Economy and Premium.

Norwegian, which also flies from Edinburgh, Birmingham and Manchester Airports, flies to Boston, Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Los Angeles, New York (JFK) and Oakland.

The airline has one of the youngest aircraft fleets of any airline, with an average age of 3.6 years, including Boeing 787 Dreamliners and Boeing 737-800s

This makes the USA more accessable and at very competative prices.

Denver Skyline

Picture courtesy of Visit Denver

Space Needle - Seattle

Picture courtesy of Port of Seattle

Don’t be a Fool to miss the Fall – Your 5 must do’s

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

Fall is a fabulous time to visit the Capital Region USA. Throughout the already scenic Blue Ridge Mountains and the valleys below, the landscape morphs into a kaleidoscope of colour. The fall harvest begins at farms and vineyards across Maryland and Virginia and is celebrated at festivals and events throughout the region. And the cooler weather brings a variety of outdoor festivals where visitors can experience authentic American culture. Here are five top experiences you should seek out on your autumn holiday to America’s Capital Region.

Take a Scenic Drive

Rent a car and follow one of the region’s National Scenic Byways to view the spectacular fall foliage. Skyline Drive, part of Shenandoah National Park, runs 105 miles along the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains and features numerous overlooks where you can pull over, take in the view and capture some stunning vacation photos. Once outside the park, the drive meets the Blue   Ridge Parkway which continues another 217 miles through the mountains of Virginia. Known as the “road that built a nation”, Maryland’s Historic National Road passes through the mountains of western Maryland, travelling through small towns and historic sites along the way. Discover more scenic fall drives in Virginia and Maryland.

Fall scenics along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Virginia Tourism Corporation, www.Virginia.org

Fall scenics along the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Virginia Tourism Corporation, www.Virginia.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

Skyline Drive - Credited to Virginia Tourism Corporation

Skyline Drive – Credited to Virginia Tourism Corporation

 

 

Taste the Harvest

Celebrate the harvest at farms and wineries throughout the region. Virginia Wine Month is celebrated in October and features wine festivals and special events at wineries, restaurants and retailers throughout the state. Taste one of the region’s specialties in its peak season during the Urbanna Oyster Festival in Virginia or the St. Mary’s Oyster Festival in Maryland. Harvest celebrations include the Suffolk Peanut Festival. Washington DC hosts several food festivals in the fall including Capital Food Fight and Taste of DC.

Have Fun on the Farm

Enjoy the crisp autumn air while having some old fashion fun as farms throughout the region host fall festivals featuring corn mazes, pumpkin patches, apple picking, hayrides and more. Check out all of the corn mazes and pumpkin patches in Virginia and in Maryland, look to Bowles Farm, Butler’s Orchard, Cove Run, Forrest Hall and Warrington Farm for fall fun.

Charlottesville-Vineyards-Credit Charlottesville-Albemarle-Convention-Visitors-Bureau.jpg

Charlottesville-Vineyards-Credit Charlottesville-Albemarle-Convention-Visitors-Bureau.jpg

Cheer on Favourite Teams

Fall kicks off the season for many of America’s favourite sports – particularly football. Fans pack the stadiums and sports bars, cheering on their favourite teams. See the regional hometown teams in action at Fed Ex Field, home to the Washington Redskins or M&T Bank Stadium, home to the Baltimore Ravens. Head to the VerizonCenter in DC to catch a hockey game with the Washington Capitals or a basketball game with the Washington Wizards. Steeplechase races are also prevalent throughout the fall. Checkout the Montpelier Hunt Races or the International Gold Cup in Virginia and the Shawan Downs Legacy Chase and the Jim McKay Maryland Million Day in Maryland.  

Get Cultured

Enjoy the fall weather while experiencing the culture of the region at one of many outdoor festivals and events.  Explore DC’s diverse neighbourhoods during the H Street Festival or Walking Town DC, an event featuring more than 50 free, guided walking tours throughout the city. Hosted in the scenic waterfront town of Easton, Maryland, the Waterfowl Festival celebrates the wide variety of waterfowl species in the Chesapeake Bay region with retriever, birds of prey, and fly fishing demonstrations, miniature decoy paintings, calling contests and more. The Virginia State Fair features animals and agriculture exhibits along with live music, shows, arts and crafts, a midway filled with games and rides, and lots of traditional fair foods. 

Picture courtesy of CapitalRegionUSA.Org

Picture courtesy of CapitalRegionUSA.Org

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jefferson Memorial - Credit CapitalRegionUSA.Org

Jefferson Memorial – Credit CapitalRegionUSA.Org

 

 

 

 

To start planning you bespoke holiday to the USA to see the fall next year then please contact us so we can put your plans into actions and help make the most out of your holiday with our expert advice – Please call us on 01323 446550 or email: info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Visa Advice

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

With entry into many a country requiring the application of a visa or visa waiver prior to travel please do contact us for advice on the best way to do this if you are in any way unsure.  We suggest that you go directly to the embassy or government website concerned where you will be directed to complete the relevant information, and only charged the fee required for the actual visa or visa waiver.  There are many companies set up online who will be eager to action this for you, and in the process will charge you a service fee for doing so – this could amount to you paying well over the odds for your visa/visa waiver. 

We are always happy to provide the website links to the official sites so please do get in touch for assistance.  An ESTA for the USA, an eTA for Canada, an electronic visa for India and also for Sri Lanka are just some (but not all) of the locations where this is necessary.

Please contact us on 01323 446550 or email: info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Little Gem’s in New England

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

Little Gem's in New England

Picture courtesy of Platinum Pebble Boutique Inn

As the stunning fall colour season of New England comes to an end for another year, now is a great time to start planning your visit next year. Combine the beautiful Maine Coast and the mountain backdrops of New Hampshire and Vermont – of course not forgetting a city stay in Boston and/or New York, a visit to Connecticut, the beautiful mansions of Rhode Island and a stay at Cape Cod.

Every now and then, a particularly outstanding property appears, Platinum Pebble Boutique Inn is one such property. Located in the village of Harwich, Cape Cod, Platinum Pebble Boutique Inn have recently been recognised by BedandBreakfast.com in their 2014 international award for “Top 10 Modern B&Bs”.

“Celebrating ten sleek and sophisticated bed and breakfasts known for their clean, minimalist aesthetic and modern design. These properties offer discerning travellers a unique boutique inn experience and state-of-the-art amenities in luxurious one-of-a-kind settings.”
The Platinum Pebble Boutique Inn is an 8 room upscale Bed & Breakfast located close to the beach in the picturesque harbour village of Harwich, Cape Cod. Luxuriously renovated, it boasts a unique contemporary interior design that stands it apart from other traditional Cape Cod inns. It offers style, elegance and luxury within an historic 1870’s sea captain’s house. All 8 rooms have large custom designed en-suite bathrooms, air-conditioning, free Wi-Fi, TV/DVD players and iPod docking stations. Larger rooms have soaking tubs, fireplaces and separate outdoor space. The inn is set on a quiet wooded lot and has a large 20’ x 40’ swimming pool. Harwich is a mid-Cape town located on Nantucket Sound next to the town of Chatham. It has three harbours from one of which runs the high-speed ferry to Nantucket Island. Harwich was the original home of cranberry production in the US and prior to that was a leading shipping location and home to many of Cape Cod’s sea captains.
This is the perfect end to a busy New England itinerary and we offer our congratulations to Simon and Annabelle Hutton on this and their many other achievements
To plan your holiday now, contact us on 01323 446550 or emailinfo@experienceholidays.co.uk and we can give you expert advice on making the most of your bespoke tailor made holiday.

American Queen Steamboat Company

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

American Queen Steamboat Company

Pictures courtesy of The American Steamboat Company

In March last year, on a self drive holiday to the deep south, I was lucky enough to step aboard the gorgeous and elegant American Queen Steamboat. An authentic paddlewheeler, American Queen plies the waters of the Mississippi, Ohio and Tennessee rivers throughout the year.

Lower Mississippi River
The lower stretch of the Mississippi from carefree New Orleans, Louisiana to vibrant Memphis, Tennessee is the river of legends. Inhale the sweet fragrance of magnolia blossoms and watch the essence of the South unfold around you…

Upper Mississippi River
The upper reaches of the Mississippi River from dynamic St. Louis to the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul reveals hidden gems around each bend and fuels your sense of discovery as you journey through the very best of America’s Heartland…

Ohio & Tennessee Rivers
Discover America’s cultural quilt in the cities and towns of the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers. From Civil War battlefields, forts and homesteads to quaint main streets and friendly smiles, this region will welcome you with open arms and enrich you with its storied past…

American Queen Steamboat Company 

 American Queen Steamboat Company

American Queen Steamboat Company 

 American Queen Steamboat Company

 

Last year, a second vessel – American Empress – joined the fleet, cruising the waters of the Columbia and Snake Rivers in the US North West.

Columbia & Snake Rivers
Nowhere is the timelessness of rivers more apparent than aboard the exquisite American Empress in the pristine Pacific Northwest. From Portland’s lovely International Rose Test Garden to the hallowed artifacts on the Nez Perce Reservation, the Pacific Northwest region comes to life…

 

American Queen Steamboat Company

 

What better way to explore the shores of ‘Ol’ Man River’ in the Deep South and other great American river systems.

If you would like to make this wonderful cruise part of your USA bespoke, tailor made holiday then please contact us on 01323 446550 or email  info@experienceholidays.co.uk

The Northern Lights in Yukon

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

From Autumn to Spring, when darkness comes to Yukon skies, the Northern Lights come out. First you might see a hint of neon colour in the starry sky, then a jagged burst of green, and soon you’re transfixed by an ethereal display of shimmering aurora borealis. Depending on auroral activity and cloud conditions, you could spend hours watching with rapt attention as the magical show unfolds overhead. Whether you’re fascinated by the science or thrilled by the opportunity to photograph the aurora, the sight of dancing lights in the night sky nourishes all souls.

The best time to visit the Yukon for the dancing northern lights is between September and April. While tour operators can’t guarantee you’ll see the aurora borealis, they will do everything they can to make your visit here memorable. They can direct you to the best viewing spots, share aurora lore and culture, and make sure you stay warm.

Aurora forecasting technology also helps increase the odds and Tourism Yukon have developed a tool at: http://travelyukon.com/Plan/Travel-Info/Aurora-Forecast to help predict when you can see this amazing phenomenon. With scientific data collected from the Space Weather Predicition Center, we’re able to forecast the aurora every 15 minutes.
Just have a few days?
Spend your days visiting museums, sightseeing and sampling local cuisine in Whitehorse, and spend your nights watching for the Northern Lights.

Day 1 – Bright Lights, Northern City
Settle in to your hotel, cabin or B&B, then soak in Whitehorse’s bustling Main Street atmosphere. Enjoy dinner at one of our fine downtown restaurants. You might want to squeeze in a nap because this will be your first night watching for the northern lights. Join a scheduled aurora tour or explore our dark skies on your own.

Day 2 – Parade of Colour
Southern Yukon is awash in fall colour, so take a scenic day trip south to Carcross or west to Haines Junction. Try some gentle hiking, watch for wildlife and explore local visitor centres and museums. Get ready for another night of northern lights viewing

Day 3 – Discover Yukon Arts and Culture
Late nights are part of the aurora experience, so enjoy a slow start in a café. Wander through Whitehorse galleries, visit the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre, and keep an eye out for a special piece of Yukon art to take home. Tonight you might even catch another glimpse of the aurora.

Did you know?
The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, are caused by huge explosions on the surface of the sun that send out streams of charged particles that interact with the Earth’s upper atmosphere. These reactions occur 60 to 80 miles above the Earth’s surface, so it doesn’t make any sense that they can be heard. Still, many people report hearing a crackling or rustling noise when they see the lights. It could be that the sound is created near the ground by electrical phenomena associated with the aurora. It could also be that watchers are being affected by psychological or physical processes that we don’t yet understand. Of course, seeing the aurora on a dark, silent night is so exciting it might just be the sound of blood rushing through veins that’s being mistaken for the sound of light!

Background on Yukon
Situated in the upper Northwest corner of Canada, next to Alaska, the Yukon is Canada’s most accessible northern destination. Home to Canada’s highest mountain (Mount Logan) and one of the largest non-polar icefields located in Kluane National Park – a UNESCO World Heritage site – breathtaking doesn’t describe the vastness, or the beauty!
The Yukon is one of North America’s major wilderness attractions; close to 80 percent remains pristine wilderness with 5,000-metre peaks, forested valleys, unspoiled waters and untamed wildlife. Roughly the size of France at 483,000 square kilometers, The Yukon is home to more than 160,000 caribou, 70,000 moose, 22,000 mountain sheep, 7,000 grizzly bears, 10,000 black bears and 250 species of birds… and only 34,000 humans!
Experience Holidays offer a ‘Yukon in Winter’ package to view the Northern Lights. For more information contact 01323 446550 – info@experienceholidays.co.uk or visit www.experienceholidays.co.uk

Picture courtesy of Travmedia

YG_Robert-Postma1-440x660

Daiquiri Season launches in September!

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

If you have booked to travel through New Orleans this September you will not be able to miss the fantastic and fun Daiquiri Festival.  cocktail-clip-art-9czMyRbcE

The New Orleans Daiquiri Festival was founded in 2011 as a two-day summer festival celebrating the daiquiri while also honouring the unique drinking culture and history of the city.  September was the month chosen as it was thought with the warm temperatures this would give cool relief and encourage people to visit the local bars and restaurants. 

For the month of September bartenders throughout New Orleans will be offering their own version of the unique Frozen Daiquiri at bars and restaurants with special tasting events.  We love a good cocktail here in Britain and what a great way to discover the history of the city and get to taste some of their local signature ingredients.  Here you can enjoy the 24hr licensing laws and join The New Orleans original cocktail tour which is a themed walking tour that visits the French Quarter’s best bars.  This tour lasts approx 2.5 hours and is fun and informative learning all about the history and drinking culture, whilst sampling some of the city’s original cocktails.

For more information please contact us on Tel: 01323 446550 or email: info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Picture courtesy of Jackie Appleton

Planning your holiday – It’s never too early (or late)

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Posted by:

Yvonne Dann

 

It’s never too early or too late to start planning your next holiday adventure.  With news from the USA that the Tioga Pass road, at Yosemite National Park, California, recently opened for the summer season following the annual closures for the winter, it is good to remember that some of the popular National and Provincial Parks in the USA and in Canada have quite a short summer season.  With more and more people looking to visit these beautiful areas, it is also wise idea to think about making your plans well in advance.  Others are of course open year round, and accommodation all round can become extremely busy during peak months.

Whether you are thinking of planning a wonderful last minute trip this year or a fantastic self drive trip for next year, we are here to help.  Stay in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, renowned for the diversity of plant and animal life.  Travel through the Grand Teton National Park and on to Yellowstone National park, with wildlife, geysers, hot springs and mudpots, and on to Glacier National Park – being sure to travel the length of the magnificent ‘Going to the Sun’ Road.  The National Parks of the Canyonlands feature towering peaks, incredible rock formations, giant lakes and deep canyons, and further west Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, and then Yosemite.

Within Canada, think about visiting the famous Canadian Rocky Mountains, home to the National Parks of Jasper and Banff and further south, Waterton National Park – close to the border with the USA.  Kluane National Park in the Yukon, for somewhere a little more off the beaten path, Grasslands National Park and Prince Albert National Park are both found in Saskatchewan, and further east in Ontario is Algonquin Provincial Park where water adventures await you.  The Parc National de la Jacques Cartier is found in the province with French flare, Quebec, and the Atlantic Provinces bring you places such as stunning Gros Morne National park on Newfoundland, where the ancient landscape is a Unesco World Heritage site.

 These are just a few of the sights that you could visit for yourself – there is so much more to explore. 

 The same applies to the rest of the world – if you are thinking of Australia or New Zealand, Africa or South America contact us now to start planning your bespoke tailor made holiday. 

 Tel: 01323446550   email:  info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Yvonne Dann

Yvonne Dann

 

Yvonne Dann

Yvonne Dann

Book now for New England

Posted on:
Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

New England is perhaps most famous for the wonderful colours of its fall foliage; forests of maple trees don their autumn mantle of reds and gold in the transition from summer to the snows of the winter months.  However, a visit to the New England States of Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island and Connecticut has far more to commend it than simply experiencing Mother Nature’s awesome autumn splendour.  Well known for its variety of accommodation from the small B&B’s, to Inns and larger luxury properties, as well as the sandy beaches of Cape Cod, the more rugged scenery of the Maine coastline dotted with colourful lighthouses and the mountains of New Hampshire and Vermont, there is something for everyone in New England.  We can help you tailor your plans to fit the time you have available, your expectations and budget.  We pride ourselves on helping you achieve your dreams, not simply selling you a holiday.

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

 

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Click here for our itinerary ideas:- New England 

If you would like to see the amazing fall colours this year then you need to book soon or alternatively start thinking about making this part of your next years holiday.  Please contact us to help make your bespoke, tailor made holiday really special and one to remember – Tel: 01323 446550 or email info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

 

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Tailor Made USA Holidays: The Grand Circle Road Trip

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Posted by:

WSI

 

The USA is a big country. From cross continental mountain chains to mesmerizing desert city oasis’s like Las Vegas, there is more to see, do, and experience in the US than in arguably any other country. Thankfully then, the US came up with a big answer to the countries bigness in the mid 20th century by inventing what we know today as the road trip.

tailor made usa road trip holidays

USA, Montana, road trip – credit Peter Ellis

From tailor made USA holiday road trips to the legendary Route 66, road trips themselves are a fantastic way to experience as much of America as possible in whatever amount of time you have available. The only question is, which is the best route to plan on taking when embarking on your own road trip?

The Grand Circle

If you’re enthralled by the great outdoors, the Grand Circle is the road trip which you should probably consider embarking upon. Spanning a staggering five states in the Southwestern US, the Grand Circle allows you to plan just over two weeks of tailor made USA holiday travel during which time you will experience everything from the red cliffs and gully’s of Zion National Park in Utah, to the fantastic expanse of the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

Iconic Scenery, Cities & Cultural Offerings

Starting and ending in Las Vegas, other tailor made travel itinerary destinations on the Grand Circle route can include Ouray in the unforgettable mountain surrounds of Colorado. In like manner, bespoke USA holidays can be made complete by journeying through iconic places like monument valley, before later boating around just as iconic Lake Powell as you cross back over into Utah.

Are you ready for the ultimate bespoke USA holiday experience? If so, a 2 to 3 week road trip around the Grand Circle might be for you. In this case, call or contact Experience Holidays today in order to start planning your road trip around exactly what you want to see and experience.

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