Friday, May 20, 2011

We Booked My Bucket List Cruise!

Well, we have done it … we have booked a 12 night Mediterranean Cruise that hits 4 of my bucket list locations. I knew that if I were to go to Europe for a cruise, I wanted to try to visit all of the locations on my wish list. I only had two options for the time frame we were looking at, and we decided on the Crown Princess, sailing on August 28, 2012, doing a 12 night Greek Isles, Venice to Rome itinerary. My bucket list consisted of: Venice, Italy; Rome, Italy; Santorini, Greece; and Dubrovnik, Croatia. I absolutely love the itinerary. Out of a 12 night sailing, we only have one day at sea. I cannot wait! The time couldn’t go by fast enough for me! And what is wonderful is that I was able to secure this sailing with simply a $200.00 deposit for myself and my husband. Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it! Well, we happen to have some block space on this sailing, and it is in a group which allows for a reduced deposit. And I have a year to make payments toward the trip. Hey, just because I own my travel agency doesn’t mean I get any deals on pricing. I pay just like everyone else!

What we decided to do for this trip is do our air round trip from Rome, and we will get in a couple days early and rent a car. This way, we can explore Rome on our own, drive to Florence and Pisa, then make our way to Venice for our cruise. Check out this fabulous itinerary!

Princess Cruises
Crown Princess

12-Night Greek Isles, Venice to Rome

Day Date Port Arv Dep
Tue 08/28/12 Venice, Italy
Wed 08/29/12 Venice, Italy - Embark - Times subject to change 01:00 PM
Thu 08/30/12 Dubrovnik, Croatia 09:00 AM 06:00 PM
Fri 08/31/12 Corfu, Greece 08:00 AM 06:00 PM
Sat 09/01/12 Katakolon, Greece 07:00 AM 04:00 PM
Sun 09/02/12 Athens (Piraeus), Greece 06:00 AM 05:45 PM
Mon 09/03/12 Mykonos, Greece 01:00 AM 06:00 PM
Tue 09/04/12 Kusadasi (Ephesus), Turkey 08:00 AM 05:00 PM
Wed 09/05/12 Rhodes, Greece 08:00 AM 05:00 PM
Thu 09/06/12 Santorini, Greece 07:00 AM 06:00 PM
Fri 09/07/12 At Sea
Sat 09/08/12 Naples/Capri, Italy 07:00 AM 06:00 PM
Sun 09/09/12 Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy - Disembark - Times subject to change 04:00 AM

Do you have a travel bucket list? If so, let me know! Post a comment, send me an email at You never know, my next blog could be about your dream destination! I can also provide pricing and options for you. Give us a call toll free at 888-882-5793, or visit us on the web at or You can also follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

World's Best Ruins to Visit

I saw this posted on, written by Christine Sarkis. I loved it and wanted to repost it. Ruins have always fascinated me, and some of these are definitely on my travel bucket list! If they are on yours, I can help you get there!

Ruins reach across centuries to fire the imagination and fuel travel plans. The very best make you feel young, small, and utterly amazed by the architectural chops of the ancients. Among the many amazing ruins that still exist today, a few stand out as the trip of a lifetime.

No matter which ruins you visit, a few rules hold true: Time your trip for the less crowded times of day, often early or late. Give yourself plenty of time, as some ruins require days of exploration. Hire a knowledgeable guide, since the history is rich but the signage is often cursory. And get beyond the most popular parts of the ruin; you'll need a bit of quiet space to appreciate this kind of ancient majesty.

Machu Picchu, Peru
The journey to Machu Picchu is epic even with relatively newfangled transportation like trains. But each year, about 25,000 people forgo the more direct routes and walk for days along the 27-mile Inca Trail to reach the ruin. Since its rediscovery a century ago, this treasure of the Inca set high in a cloud forest of the Peruvian Andes has captured imaginations worldwide. The massive stone blocks tell the story of both a sprawling agricultural zone with terracing and ancient food storehouses and an urban zone replete with temples, squares, tombs, and living quarters. If you're considering a trek to Machu Picchu, plan ahead: You can only make the hike with a licensed company, and spots book up quickly, especially in high season.

Acropolis, Greece
Waiting for the traffic to speed past at a crowded intersection in Athens, you're likely to forget that history keeps constant watch over the city. Glance up, however, and you'll catch the view Athenians and visitors alike have been admiring for the last 2,500 years. Time has battered the once-pristine temples and gates that crown the hill of the Acropolis, leaving stone ruins that retain a familiar splendor even after thousands of years of wear and destruction. The elegant proportions of the fifth-century B.C. Parthenon and the Temple of Athena Nike—both dedicated to the city's patron deity—are a reminder of how much we still rely on ancient Greece for our concepts of beauty.

Mesa Verde, United States
Great ruins aren't always an ocean away: Some of the best preserved Native American cliff dwellings in North America reside in Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. Home to the Ancestral Puebloans—whose descendants became 20 different Southwestern tribes, including the Hopi and Zuni—Mesa Verde traces 700 years of history across 4,000 archeological sites. Visit mesa-top pueblos and the dwellings built beneath massive overhanging cliffs. Ascend steep trails and ladders, or crawl through tunnels to explore ancient architecture such as the 150-room Cliff Palace or the hard-to-reach Balcony House. The park's hours vary by season, and not all sites are open year-round.

Angkor, Cambodia
War or natural disaster might have weakened the Khmer Empire's ancient capital, but ultimately, it was the jungle that conquered this ninth- to fifteenth-century urban center. Today, the densely forested 150-square-mile Angkor Archaeological Park protects part of a vast cluster of ancient capitals, many of which remain buried. The park's most famous temple, Angkor Wat, is the world's largest religious building. But the park's dozens of other ruins, including Bayon temple with its wall of 11,000 carved figures, offer quieter glimpses into the art and architecture of this culturally rich 600-year period.

Great Pyramids And Memphis, Egypt
Political unrest or no, a roundup of the world's best ruins can't exclude Egypt. The last existing ancient wonder of the world, the Great Pyramid of Giza stands as a lone window into the far past. With more than 4,000 years to ponder the question, experts still can't agree on how the builders placed more than 2 million stone blocks so perfectly. The rest of the Giza Necropolis holds more wonders: two more Great Pyramids, built during 80 years by 20,000 to 30,000 workers, plus the Great Sphinx, cemeteries, and the ruins of a village. The pyramids are part of a larger UNESCO World Heritage site that includes Memphis, the capital of the Old Kingdom of Egypt. A trip can even include some up-close-and-personal time: Visitors can explore the interiors of some of the pyramids. And the recent drop in tourism offers intrepid travelers the rare chance to experience the pyramids without the usual crowds.

Tikal, Guatemala
Stay overnight in the national park for the ultimate experience at Tikal, an ancient Maya city in northern Guatemala that was home to 90,000 people before being abandoned in the tenth century. Early the next morning, before the park opens to the general public, join a small group making the trek through a jungle awash in the pre-dawn symphony of birds and insects. Climb to the top of Temple IV, the Temple of the Two-Headed Serpent, to witness a sunrise that reveals ancient temples and pyramids rising from the verdant forest blanket. You've still got hours to explore this vast complex of pyramids, temples, and plazas before the big crowds roll in. Along the way, catch glimpses of brown coatis, toucans, howler monkeys, and some of the hundreds of other species to call Tikal home.

Petra, Jordan
Hailed as a "rose-red city half as old as time" in a 19th-century poem, the ancient city of Petra was half built and half carved into red sandstone cliffs. Nabataean Arabs established the city in the sixth century B.C., and for hundreds of years it thrived as a trade center for frankincense, myrrh, and spices. Now, as then, enter the ruins of the city through a narrow, half-mile-long gorge squeezed between cliffs nearly 300 feet high. Inside, explore architecturally elaborate tombs and temples, sacrificial altars, and even a Roman-style amphitheater. Most people explore on foot, but visitors can also ride camels and donkeys. The sun lights up the red cliffs of Petra most dramatically in mid-morning and late afternoon, so be sure to time your visit accordingly.

Colosseum, Italy
Digitally reimagined in Hollywood blockbusters such as Gladiator, the camera really shaves millennia off Rome's Colosseum. But the 2,000-year-old ruins are so evocative up close that special effects seem superfluous. With a bloody history of fights to the death between gladiators, slaves, prisoners, and wild animals, the Colosseum held 50,000 spectators or more in its heyday. Later, Romans used the abandoned arena as a quarry: Stones from the Colosseum are part of the cathedrals of St. Peter and St. John Lateran. Last summer, entirely new sections of the ruin—including the basement— were opened for tours.

Great Wall Of China, China
Like a dragon, the Great Wall of China slithers its way across the landscape for about 4,500 miles, and, like a dragon, the wall protects something treasured. Constructed to shelter China's people and culture from the outside world, the "Long Wall of 10 Thousand Li" was built during 2,000 years by many imperial dynasties. While some parts of the wall are in ruins or have disappeared entirely, other sections have been restored or preserved. The most popular section today is the Badaling Great Wall, close to Beijing. Slightly farther from the capital city and offering a more rugged (and less crowded) experience is the Great Wall at Mutianyu. In Qinhuangdao City, the Laolongtou Great Wall actually stretches into the sea, and is said to resemble a dragon drinking water.

Palmyra, Syria
Twice a day, at sunrise and sunset, the Bride of the Desert blushes, even 18 centuries after her birth. Palmyra, also known as Tadmor, is in the desert northeast of Damascus, Syria, and was once a wealthy caravan oasis along the Silk Road, linking Persia, India, and China with the Roman Empire. At a crossroads of cultures, the ruins of grand colonnaded streets, temples, funerary towers, and aqueducts demonstrate a mingling of influences that made this an awfully cosmopolitan place for the second century. Palmyra was also home to the warrior queen and conqueror Zenobia, and tour guides tell exciting tales that give this seemingly isolated place a starring role in world history.

Looking to check some items off of your travel bucket list? Give us a call at 888-882-5793 or visit us on the web at Let CruiseOne Freer & Associates help you plan your next trip. We handle cruises, land vacations, resorts, all inclusives. We are your cruise and vacation speciailists!


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Luxury Cruising

With more ships than ever, you can find some really great rates. And this goes for all lines, contemporary (Royal Caribbean, Carnival); premium (Celebrity Cruises, Holland America) and luxury (Silversea, Regent, Oceania, Azamara Club Cruises).

There is a current special with Oceania Cruises right now. And if you have been waiting for the right time to look into a luxury cruise, this is it!

Oceania Cruises has just announced a Historic Savings Event offering their BEST SAVINGS EVER! With savings up to $2000 PER PERSON off the 2 for 1 fares plus free airfare from the major gateways, now is the time to take advantage of these historic savings.

There are savings on select sailings for 2011 and 2012. Please give us a call for details. You can reach us any time at 888-882-5793 or visit us on the web at or visit our Luxury Brand website at

Monday, May 2, 2011

Cruise Sales!

CruiseOne Freer & Associates will be attending Orlando's 15th Annual Senior Expo on May 4th and 5th, 2011, at the Central Florida Fairgrounds located at 4603 W. Colonial Drive, Orlando FL 32808.

We see this as a great opportunity to be in front of over 8,000 attendees and tell them about our amazing travel deals and excellent customer service.

We have created cruise sales with top cruise lines, such as Cunard, Holland America, Princess, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises which will offer things like reduced deposits, on board credits and on board savings booklets. This makes the opportunity to book your dream cruise vacation even sweeter! And, if you don't make it to the show or if you are not local, you can STILL take advantage of our cruise sales. They will run for one week, from May 4th through May 11th, 2011. Just give us a call for details and pricing.

We can be reached via phone at 321-735-0202 or toll free 888-882-5793. Visit us on the web at or send me an email at

Let us help you plan your dream vacation!