Travel: Ramblers offer a Canadian experience

Welwyn Garden City-based walking specialists Ramblers Worldwide Holidays have just launched their new brochure, jam-packed with new holiday ideas for late 2016 / 2017, including a special new holiday to Canada.

Wednesday, 4th May 2016, 1:35 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th May 2016, 2:37 pm

For the first time all local transport costs in connection with the walking programme in 2017 will be included in the holiday price with no credit card charges which makes them even better value for money!

The Great Lakes, Bays and Waterfalls of Ontario is a 15-day holiday exploring some of the lesser known landscapes of Canada on foot and canoe. This scenic journey takes one in a loop around the southern corner of Ontario, following Hudson Bay and heading inland to Algonquin Park.

The adventure begins in Toronto, on the northern shores of Lake Ontario, with other highlights including: Tobermory on the Bruce Peninsular; Flowerpot Island (a national marine park); Manitoulin Island and Killarney Provincial Park.

Niagra Falls

Then there’s great walks and canoeing on the tranqil lakes of Ontario; Huntsville; the world renowned Algonquin National Park; a tour of Lake Ontario; beautiful Niagara-on-the-Lake and the grand finale – an exhilarating Hornblower Cruise to Falls Basin.

Prices are from £3,055 per person includes return flights, transfers, B&B accommodation (plus six dinners); admission fees and the services of a dedicated tour leader.

The trip departures from 3 October 2016.

North Sea festival a must for Jazz fans

Niagra Falls

The North Sea Jazz Festival has become Holland’s number one jazz event and it is due to be held on 8-10 July. Each year, well over 65,000 visitors watch as 1,300 artists perform across 15 stages at Ahoy Rotterdam which means that for three days Holland’s second city becomes the jazz capital of the world.

You can listen to many musical genres at the North Sea Jazz Festival, ranging from traditional New Orleans jazz, swing, bop, free jazz, fusion, avant-garde jazz and electronic jazz, to blues, gospel, funk, soul, R&B, hip hop, world beat and Latin.

An historic hop-on hop-off Tourist Tram is set to connect The Hague’s city centre and the sea starting in June. Tourists will be able to use a ticket to jump on and off an unlimited number of times for one or more days.

The Tourist Tram is a typical vintage Hague tram: cream-coloured with green stripes, just like the trams which used to ride through the city in the 1950s.

The Tourist Tram will run every 30 minutes between 09.30 and 17.30 hours including weekends and public holidays during the summer period from the Hague city centre to Scheveningen beach. It will pass many tourist attractions and sights and passengers will be told everything about The Hague as they travel via an audio tour available in different languages.

In total, the route has 16 stops where visitors can get on and off on the way. The route will connect the historic downtown area, the future Museum Quarter around Lange Voorhout, the Peace Palace and the Kurhaus and will head back through the International Zone and past the Gemeentemuseum.

A day pass for unlimited travel will cost €14 and a two-day pass €18. Children under the age of 12 years can travel two days for €5. Each seat in the Tourist Tram is provided with an audio tour explaining the sights along the route. The audio tour is available in eight different languages. Dutch, English, German, Spanish, French, Chinese, Japanese and also in the local Hague dialect.

Another idea if you are visiting The Hague this year is the Bites & Stories offers. It’s a fun and unique four hour Food Tour of The Hague through the city centre where your new local friends will take you to several locations where bites and stories will be shared by the local owners. The tour runs every Tuesday to Sunday.

Locals are the heart and soul of the Bites & Stories tours. On the tour you are introduced to passionate and talented small business owners. You get to know the stories behind the venues and fun facts about The Hague and the Dutch. At each stop you are introduced to a unique product and an inspiring story. The tour is available in both Dutch and English, depending on the participants.

Bites & Stories is the brainchild of Marthe and Kerensa, two young entrepeneurs from The Hague. They love eating delicious food and believe it is the best way to discover a city.

New countries for Tauck clients

Two new itineraries to Morocco and Brazil are being added to Tauck’s Exotics collection, bringing to 29 its exclusive portfolio of hand-crafted, guided tours and cruises exploring Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, Antarctica, Australia and New Zealand.

Tauck’s new 10-day “Magic of Morocco” itinerary begins with an overnight stay in the capital city Rabat, where guests gain an understanding of the country’s political legacy during a visit to the mausoleum of former king Mohammed V, and at Dar al-Makzhen, Morocco’s royal palace and residence of its current king.

Travelling on to Fez, guests visit the city’s traditional tanneries, attend an exclusive lecture highlighting daily life in Morocco from a woman’s perspective, and can choose one of three themed walking tours.

Guests will also experience the Roman ruins at Volubilis and, while en route to Casablanca, visit the mausoleum and palace of 17th-century sultan Moulay Ismail in the walled city of Meknes.

An overnight stay in Casablanca includes visits to the imposing Hassan II Mosque and Rick’s Café, inspired by the classic Bogart-Bergman film set in the city. The journey concludes with a three-night stay in Marrakech, with visits to the city’s souks and a theological college founded in the 14th century.

Guests will tour the 16th-century Saadian Tombs, visit the Gardens Majorelle, once owned by designer Yves Saint-Laurent, and travel into the desert for an afternoon and evening of Berber culture, including camel rides, tea with a local, and traditional music and entertainment in a tented setting.

The “Magic of Morocco” trip costs from £3,540 for the 10 days

Tauck’s new 12-day Brazilian itinerary, “Rhythms of Brazil: Rio to Iguacu Falls” begins in Rio de Janeiro. Guests will enjoy a three-night stay at the Belmond Copacabana Palace overlooking Copacabana Beach.

They will travel to Tijuca Forest, the largest urban forest in the world, the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue atop Corcovado Hill, and the summit of 1,390-foot Sugarloaf Mountain, to savour incredible views of the city and surrounding area.

Guests will then fly to the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais for a two-night stay in the 18th-century gold rush town of Ouro Preto, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its Baroque architecture.

A guided walking tour features the Matriz de Nossa Senhora do Pilar church, two cultural museums and the city’s opera house, followed by a lunch of hearty regional specialties prepared using centuries-old techniques.

An overnight stay in the capital city of Brasilia highlights its modernist architecture and includes a tour showcasing its unique cathedral, Presidential Palace and the country’s Supreme Court.

A flight to coastal Salvador and a subsequent three-night stay there explores African influences in the city’s music and Candomble religion and reveals its Portuguese colonial architecture.

The journey concludes in Iguacu National Park where guests will experience its majestic waterfalls from a helicopter sightseeing flight above the falls and during a jet boat excursion to the base of the cascade.

Included in the price of both new itineraries are all lodging and ground transportation, sightseeing and admission to attractions, most meals and gratuities, airport transfers, and much more.

Tauck will operate seven departures of “Magic of Morocco” in February, March, April, November and December next year and seven “Rhythms of Brazil: Rio to Iguacu Falls” departures in March, April, May, September, October and December 2017.

“Rhythms of Brazil: Rio to Iguacu Falls” from £3,960 plus on-tour air.