Here are 5 fabulous reasons to take a Viking River Cruise! Of course, I cannot imagine a reason not to take a Viking River Cruise because there are no negatives. My travel buddy, Suzanne, of Adventures of Empty Nesters, and I loved it! [Read more…] about 5 Fabulous Reasons to Take a Viking River Cruise!
Get Ready for Adventure and explore the wonders of the Baja! Travel Red Travel Mexico and Tam on March 10-16, 2019 and experience two of the Earth’s most charismatic marine species, gray whales, and whale sharks! [Read more…] about Explore the Wonders of the Baja Peninsula with Tam and Red Travel Mexico
Vacation like a millionaire, baby! Once, just once, wouldn’t it be nice to see how the other half lives? And not by standing close by and watching from a distance. We want to sip champagne and mingle with the stars and do everything the mega-rich does. In normal life, it’s unattainable unless you have a couple of million bucks under the mattress. Oh, where did that come from?! However, you can get a taste of the good life on vacation. After all, it’s expensive but short. So, below are the tips on how to vacation like a millionaire. Maybe after this, you’ll upgrade to billionaire status! [Read more…] about That’s Rich! Vacation Like A Millionaire!
The recent world cup festivities highlighted the beauty and welcoming atmosphere Russia has to offer. It’s not always easy for people to grasp just how large Russia is. Covering an area of over 17 million square kilometers, and with a population of just over 144 million people, there isn’t much Russia doesn’t have to offer visitors.
A rich heritage
Russia is home to thousands of museums full of interesting and important works of art from some of the world’s most influential artists, which is why it is the perfect travel destination for culture vultures. The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg is home to more than 3 million pieces alone. Expect to see artworks from Michelangelo, Raphael, and Matisse, to name but a few.
In addition to the more traditional pieces of art, Russian architecture is rich and varied. With gold and ornate palaces to marvel at, expect to be blown away by the opulence and cleanliness of even the most everyday buildings. Even the subway in Moscow is special.
Interesting Fact: Russia occupies 10% of all the land on earth.
Tantalise your taste buds
Despite not being particularly well known for its cuisine, Russia offers a tasty and simple range of traditionally cooked dishes. Even the homemade Russian soup, Borscht, is a real treat.
If your taste buds have trouble adjusting to the Russian cuisine then you can always numb them a little with some famous Russian vodka. Going to Russia and not trying the vodka is like going to Italy and not trying the pizza. You haven’t tried vodka until you’ve had a shot in the land of its origin.
Interesting Fact: Russia spans two continents and 11 time zones.
Cover more ground
When you’re visiting such a large and diverse country you want to experience as much as possible. Enjoying several stops from the comfort of one of the many cruise holidays in the region, or enjoying the scenery while cruising up the river Volga, offers the perfect solution to the adventurous tourist. You get to enjoy all of the main sites without being constantly sitting on transport or packing and unpacking.
The Volga is the largest river in Europe, being equal in size to the Ganges and the Nile. A cruise up the Volga takes in many attractions and places of interest, such as Volgograd and Moscow, as well as letting you soak up the scenery at your own pace.
If you want to reach some of the more remote parts of Russia, there is an excellent railway infrastructure. The Trans-Siberian line is renowned as the world’s longest railway line. You can also learn about the surrounding countryside while you travel.
Interesting Fact: Russia has a coastline on three oceans, the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic oceans.
An abundance of culture and literature
Russia is well known for the quality of its theatres. The Bolshoi, in particular, is world-renowned and provides an excellent opportunity for you to enjoy an opera or drama. Theatres and Opera are a lot more common in Russia, with large portions of the population regularly attending a local theatre.
If you’re a fan of classic Russian literature, you will come across the places dedicated to the likes of Tolstoy, Pushkin, and Chekhov, and can even visit many of the places mentioned in their books.
Interesting Fact: Russia is home to Europe’s two largest lakes, Onega and Ladoga.
As well as being home to over 100,000 rivers and Europe’s two largest lakes, Russia offers a surprising diversity of nature. Whether you want to experience the peaks of a mountain looking over the vast pine forests or a vast desert, Russia has it all.
When a country has such a diverse landscape, it is also home to a varied selection of wildlife. Snow leopards, polar bears, and pikas are just a few of the animals you may get to see in their natural habitat if you’re adventurous. The Siberian tiger is possibly Russia’s most famous four-legged inhabitant. Growing to over 3 metres in length and weighing more than 300kg, we suggest you don’t try to stroke the world’s biggest cat.
Interesting Fact: Russia is home to about 120 ethnic groups speaking more than 100 languages.
Whether you’re a fan of colourful and amazing architecture, or interested in the history of the Orthodox Church, Russia offers an abundance of amazing cathedrals. Situated in the Red Square in Moscow, St. Basil’s Cathedral is a magnificent structure covered in blue domes and gold, while the Cathedral of the Annunciation features spectacular gold domes. Many of the cathedrals and other building of significance cost very little (or are free) to visit.
Interesting Fact: There are 75 million members of the Russian orthodoxy religion in the country.
Time to get packing?
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You must add beautiful Prague to your bucket list!
It is far beyond me to write a history of Prague, but I must mention a few things about the City of a Hundred Spires. The beauty of the city is undeniable, but let me say this: I didn’t see a tenth of what I wanted to see, there just wasn’t time. And, here is a travel tip: don’t go in summer! I will go back to this city and explore, but it will not be in the summer crowds. It was so busy there were moments I felt panicky! But, Prague, don’t worry, I shall return!
One of the most popular sights in Prague is the Charles Bridge, built in the early 1400s to honor Charles IV, or Karol Quatre. On the day we visited the bridge was so crowded, that when we crossed the street to get to it I could have lifted my feet off the ground and the press of the people would have carried me through. So, I really do not have fantastic photos of the bridge, but I did photograph some of the statues of the saints.
Hopefully most of us know the story of the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, architect of “the Final Solution” and Reichsprotektor of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia which were handed to Germany as part of the Munich deal of 1938. The Czech government in exile decided to assassinate Heydrich, who was known as the “Butcher of Prague”. His iron rule and cruelty won him the additional names of “the hangman” and “the blonde beast”. He went to Prague to “strengthen policy, and carry out countermeasures against resistance”. The British and the Czech government in exile developed Operation Anthropoid, a plot to assassinate Heydrich. Jan Kubis and Josef Gabcik were two of the parachutists flown in to complete the operation. They were successful in that Heydrich did die at their hands, but they were hunted and killed at the Church of St Cyril and Methodius. After that, the Germans murdered their relatives, and the families of the other parachutists. The reprisals were of unbelievable violence against civilians. There are still bullet holes in the church, showing where they were killed. If you don’t know the story, you should buy or rent ANTHROPOID, the recent movie about the event. It is an intense film, and brings Jan Kubis and Josef Gabcik to life.
There is a tour in Prague about Operation Anthropoid, and I didn’t have time to take it. Next time I am in Prague, it is one of the first things I am going to do!
Take a trip to the Bastei? Where, you ask, is that? And, what is it? Well, it is an amazing sight in the Saxon Switzerland National Park, which is in Germany. Only an hour from Dresden, it is well worth a visit! One can hike, rock climb, or just take in the incredible views. My travel buddy, Suzanne Stavert of Adventures of Empty Nesters, and I saw this incredible park when we did a Viking River Cruise in July 2018! I hope you enjoy the photos!