Tag Archive | Exotic Travel

We Will Show you the World…

 Thank you for visiting our blog: a great place to search for deals and get ideas!                 While we  specialize  in  small ships cruises, river and Barge cruises, upscale Vacations, and Tours,  we service our clients’ every need.  Our core business is all about repeat clients and  referrals.   Most clients start their vacation search on the internet and we think that’s a good thing.  The web is a great source of information.  When it’s time to plan your trip, however, then leave it to the Professionals.   One call and we’ll do it all …

 

 

G Adventures Top 5: Vegetarian Hotspots

By: G Adventures
With a voracious appetite for vegetables, there are more than a few long-time vegetarians at G Adventures. If vegetables could talk, you’d hear them screaming when they trek into town.

Here are some memorable vegetarian stops we’ve had the pleasure to enjoy during wandering travels around the world.

#1 Chiang Mai, Thailand — While travelling through Thailand the most common vegetarian dishes are usually variations on veggie pad Thai or veggie Thai curry. While both are great dishes, don’t you wonder what the vegetarian Thai eats? In Chiang Mai we found a place that serves up the true North Thailand vegetarian experience. Mangsawirat Kangreuanjam is a small place within the city walls that serves up 20 to 30 different authentic thai dishes daily. Opening early in the morning this is a fantastic place for breakfast. All your choices are right in front of you and you can load your plate for less than two bucks.

#2 Rajasthan, India — (winner of our Best Vegetarian Country award) – India has got to be the best place in the world for a vegetarian meal. The variety in choices of dishes from north to south is mind boggling. One place that stands out however, is the Dream Heaven Guest House in Udaipur, Rajasthan. The meal of choice was a thali dinner consisting of 6 spectacular dishes served with rice, roti and papad. The open air roof top patio has a fantastic view over the lake, the old city and the floating palace. We enjoyed a Kingfisher beer as the sun went down and then enjoyed our meal in the cool evening air.

#3 Cuzco, Peru — Unlike India, South America can be a tough place to find a really good variety of vegetarian food. After a month touring around Peru we found ourselves a little tired of rice, beans and eggs and craving fresh vegetables. While in Cuzco we tried a place called Granja Heidi that had a Mediterranean theme. We had a delicious fresh green salad and penne pasta. Although the dishes were not peruvian, we did enjoy the meal with a Cusqueña beer.

#4 Chamonix, France — Okay, here is one of our favourite lunches. While in the Alps in early June we packed up a lunch consisting of fresh baguette, brie, olives, avocado and a great bottle of red wine and headed out for a hike through the mountains. After an amazing morning hiking through the forests, up the mountain and across alpine meadows we found a stunning view of the surrounding snow caps. There we sat in silence and enjoyed one of the best lunches we have ever had. Don’t forget the corkscrew.

#5 New Brunswick, Canada — No matter where you are you can usually find a vegetarian dish on the menu. But when you stumble upon a vegetarian restaurant in the most unexpected place it is a fantastic score and means you have more than one choice. While travelling through New Brunswick, Canada, we were fortunate, and surprised, to find a vegetarian restaurant just down the street from our bed and breakfast in a residential area of Moncton. The staff at Café Calactus restaurant were very friendly and they served us up some fantastic veg dishes at very reasonable prices.

Ditch the meat and contact R and B International Travel to visit one of these vegetarian hotspots!

Traveling Well to Israel

 

Shalom!

Welcome to Israel…a land where Abraham forged his covenant with God…and today is a nation that has defied unbelievable odds to become an ancestral homeland for Jews and a place where democracy has flourished.

For the first time traveler to Israel, it is like a walk through history. Here three continents (Asia, Africa and Europe) and two seas convene making the country a blend of cultures, customs and traditions. Here was a crossroad to ancient routes of commerce and a home to diverse peoples reflecting the flood of conquering armies striving for eminence in this much-desired small country. Canaanites, Hebrews, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Crusaders, Ottoman Turks and the British—each made their stand, briefly flourished, and were swept away leaving in their wake fortifications, castles and royal palaces. From sheikhs’ tombs with whitened domes to ancient synagogues decorated with colorful mosaics and the graceful arches of Crusader churches, Israel is an amazing feast for the senses.

Rooted in religion—though a majority of its people is quite secular—the old Walled City of Jerusalem is of great symbolic importance for Judaism, Christianity and Islam and their histories entwine on its labyrinthine streets. Walk along the Via Dolorosa or Way of Sorrows to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the site of Jesus, the Christian Messiah’s, crucifixion, burial and resurrection. Observe the solemnity of the Western Wall, the only surviving remnant of Judaism’s most sacred shrine, the Temple Mount. Gaze in awe at one of the world’s great architectural masterpieces, the Dome of the Rock, which was built over a rock said to retain Mohammed’s footprint. It is of particular veneration because of the belief that it is the place that had been visited by Mohammed, the Muslim Prophet, on his miraculous night journey which had taken him from Arabia to heaven.

Ancient and modern, secular and sacred, Israel beckons visitors with its magnificent sites, holy places and warm Mediterranean climate. And while Israel is a land of dynamic contrasts with age-old sacred shrines alongside futuristic skyscrapers and posh resorts with swaying palms alongside desert wasteland…it is its own unique Israeli blend—a fitting description for a nation that continues to confound expectations.

What time of year is best to visit Israel? Anytime of year is beautiful in Israel! Israel enjoys long, warm, dry summers (April-October) and generally mild winters (November-March) with somewhat drier, cooler weather in hilly regions, such as Jerusalem and Safed. Rainfall is relatively heavy in the north and center of the country, with much less in the northern Negev and almost negligible amounts in the southern areas.

Regional conditions vary considerably, with humid summers and mild winters on the coast; dry summers and moderately cold winters in the hill regions; hot dry summers and pleasant winters in the Jordan Valley; and year-round semi-desert conditions in the Negev.

Weather extremes range from occasional winter snowfall in the mountain regions to periodic oppressively hot dry winds that send temperatures soaring, particularly in spring and autumn.

Who are the Israelis?

  • Population of 7 Million
  • 79% are Jewish
  • 15% are Muslim
  • 6% are Christian, Druze, Buddhist and more

Official languages:

  • Hebrew, Arabic
  • Almost everyone speaks English

Short Distances: – Israel is basically the size of New Jersey.

  • Tel Aviv-Jerusalem: 50 minutes
  • Jerusalem-Dead Sea: 45 minutes
  • Jerusalem-Masada: 90 minutes
  • Tel Aviv-Haifa: 90 minutes
  • Jerusalem-Tiberias: 2.5 hours
  • Tel Aviv-Eilat: 4 hours

Preparing for the Trip

  • No visas required
  • Just a passport with validity of 6 months
  • All major credit cards accepted
  • Accessible ATM’s
  • 3.5 Shekels = $1

Electricity The electric current in Israel is 220 volts AC, single phase, 50 Hertz. Most Israeli sockets are of the three-pronged variety but many can accept some European two-pronged plugs as well. Electric shavers, traveling irons and other small appliances may require adapters and/or transformers, which can be purchased in Israel.

Israel: A Journey to the Holy Land

10 days
Tel Aviv • Jaffa • Caesarea • Tiberias • Sea of Galilee Nazareth • Jericho • Dead Sea • Masada • Qumran • Jerusalem • Wailing Wall • Bethlehem • Church of the Nativity • Mount of Olives • Mt. Zion

Did You Know?

  • Israel has 4 seas, 6 micro-climates, mountains, valleys, lush pastureland and deserts, all in a space the size of New Jersey.
  • Jerusalem is Israel’s “Washington, D.C.” and Tel Aviv is Israel’s “New York City.” Jerusalem, the capital, is home to three quarters of a million people. The Tel Aviv metropolitan area, Israel’s center of business, culture, fashion and entertainment, is home to four million people.
  • Mount Hermon is 10,000 feet high, Jerusalem is 3,000 feet above Sea Level, and the Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth. Because it is 2,000 feet further from the sun’s rays – even the fairest skin tans at the Dead Sea shore, but doesn’t burn.
  • 75% of Israelis are Jewish, 25% are Israeli Muslims, Christians, Druze, Baha’is and Buddhists.
  • Israel’s official languages are Hebrew and Arabic and almost everyone speaks English.

A Taste of Israel: Filet of Sea Bass

Ingredients

  • 4 fillets of Sea Bass (5 ounces each)
  • 3.5 ounces of Spinach Leaves
  • 3.5 ounces of Cooked Chickpeas
  • 3.5 ounces of Blanched Green Ful (Fava Beans)
  • 3.5 ounces of Baby Arugula
  • 4 Thyme Leaves
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • 1/2 cup of Olive Oil
  • 1 grilled Eggplant
  • 1 tablespoon of Sour Cream
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 Lemon

Cooking Instructions

  1. Cream of Eggplant: Burn the eggplant on an open flame. Cut in half and scrape out the inside. Throw away the peel. Mix the eggplant with salt, pepper, lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon olive oil to taste. Mix in a blender with 1 tablespoon of sour cream until it becomes a smooth cream.
  2. Tomato Coulis: Slice an X into the top of the tomatoes. Boil in water for 1 minute. Remove the skin, cut into quarters, and take out the seeds. Put on a tray and sprinkle 2 tablespoons olive oil, pepper and salt to taste. Bake for 2 hours in the oven at 200 degrees.
  3. Fish: Season fish with salt, pepper, and 2 thyme leaves. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil on a sauté pan. Place the fish on the pan and sear on both sides until brown. Take the fish off the pan and put on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and cook fish for 4 minutes.
  4. Vegetables: Fry spinach in a sauté pan with 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Season the spinach with salt and pepper. Let sit until it reaches room temperature. Sauté cooked chickpeas, fava beans, 1 garlic clove, salt, pepper, and 2 thyme leaves in a pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil on a low flame for a few minutes. Add tomato coulis and 1 tablespoon water and cook for another few minutes.

To Serve: Place the cooked chickpeas and fava beans in the center of the plate. Place the fish on top, then place the fresh arugula leaves seasoned with salt and pepper on top of the fish. Pour the cream of eggplant on the side.

Contact R and B International Travel today to start planning your Israel journey.

3 Big Benefits to Booking a Condo with a Travel Agent

By: Outrigger Hotels and Condominiums

Recently we’ve all been hearing a lot of our clients telling us that they are booking a condo directly with an owner, rather than with a travel agent, because it costs less.

Before you make that decision, let us explain the benefits of booking through a travel agent and a reputable management company, like Outrigger Hospitality. Here are three great reasons to book with a travel agent.

  1. You will be able to check-in and check-out at the front desk of the property vs. having to go to another off-property location, like a realty office, to pick up the key.
  2. You will enjoy regularly scheduled housekeeping services.
    • With owner-direct bookings, the unit may only be cleaned only after the guest leaves.
    • If you need or want certain types of housekeeping or maintenance services during their stay, and if they booked direct with the owner, they may have to arrange for these services themselves, via the owner or the owner’s representative. If you book through the agent, we’ll take care of this for you.
  3. You will have overall peace of mind knowing that you have an experienced travel agent behind you if you need assistance to make your vacation experience match your expectations.

It’s your vacation and your time to relax. Let us book your condo for you. Give R B International Travel a call to book your next Outrigger getaway to any of the Hawaiian Islands.

Abercrombie & Kent’s 2011 Marco Polo Club Invitational Programs

The new Marco Polo Club Invitational Programs brochure offers a spectacular collection of off-the-beaten-path destinations and unique insider-access experiences for members of Abercrombie & Kent’s exclusive travel Club. A&K’s world-renowned Tour Directors lead journeys such as India’s Himalayan Kingdom of Ladakh (July 4-17, 2011), where you witness the Hemis Festival, a Buddhist celebration rarely attended by outsiders. On Laos & Myanmar Rediscovered (February 10-23, 2011), glimpse life along the Mekong and Ayeyarwady rivers, observing the ancient traditions of locals as you go.

Contact R and B International Travel to order the latest Marco Polo Club brochure or to learn more about the benefits of a membership.