Posts Tagged ‘travel’

Costa Rica

July 13, 2014

We will be starting a weeks series on Costa Rica’s Lake Arenal next week.

costa rica


Poker Players will want to read this.. They are a GREAT time from personal experience.

June 22, 2012
A September to Remember!
June, 2012
Cruise with Poker Hall of Famer Linda Johnson AKA “The First Lady of Poker.”

Cruise for FREE!

Take a poker cruise in September with hundreds of poker players to the Caribbean on Royal Caribbean’s spectacular Oasis of the Seas. You’ll have a vacation you will never forget!

We have back to back cruises on the most magnificent cruise ship in the world, the Oasis of the Seas, sailing from Fort Lauderdale on September 15 and 22, 2011. Guests can cruise for seven days or fourteen days. This ship is amazing; it has a zipline, Broadway theater, 24 eating venues, carousel, ice skating rink, miniature golf, rock climbing wall, Central Park area, surf rider, aqua theater, comedy club, and many other amenities. You will be amazed by the size, beauty, and activities on board.

Special Offer! Book both September cruises below and receive a $100 discount per cabin. The Oasis of the Seas is a phenomenal ship that is more like a resort at sea than a ship. Watch some videos here: you’ve never seen anything like it!

• Western Caribbean 7-Night Cruise: 09/15/2012, RT Ft. Lauderdale, FL. As LOW as $895* more info

• Eastern Caribbean 7-Night Cruise: 09/22/2012, RT Ft. Lauderdale, FL. As LOW as $945* more info

Linda Johnson and Jan Fisher took these cruises in the past and wrote a blog post about them. Read them here, but I warn you, once you do, you’ll want to book these cruises!

In the voting of the 2011 Best of Travel and Tourism, the Oasis of the Seas was voted by readers of the magazine as the world’s best cruise ship.

Call 888-999-4880 and reserve your cabin now!

View the brochures and booking forms here.
Visit our website to view our entire cruise schedule.

Hurricane season is almost upon us. Make sure your RV is ready.

May 11, 2012

Making Sure your RV is Ready for Hurricane Season

Hurricane season is almost upon us. It officially begins on June 1st. Of course those of us here in Florida have learned to pay particular attention to the weather developments. As we have all seen in the past most eastern seaboard cities and coastal regions can be a target as hurricanes do not discriminate.

NOW DON’T PANIC just because you hear the words “Tropical Depression off the coast of Africa”… doesn’t mean to drop everything and run to the store and buy all the bottled water you can carry and all the cans of soup that will fit in the trunk. However, it is time to pay attention when you hear those words and start to get the plan that you already have in motion.  If you are going to leave your RV behind during an evacuation, here are a couple of hints to keep it in one piece. First, bring in any slide out rooms. Even the best seal is not going to keep out hurricane driven rain. Next try to park next to a high building to help block the wind. This does really does help. Loosen the corner screw on the inside flange of all roof vents and put a thick rubber band from the screw to the handle of the vent, otherwise they will vibrate open in the wind and then blow off, which will then cause much additional damage to RV.

Empty your black and grey tanks and fill them with fresh water for weight, a forty gallon tank of water is over three hundred lbs. They can be drained when you return. Fill the freshwater tank with city water if at all possible, it will keep longer and you may need it when you get back. After the storm there will be no power so gas pumps will not run. so be sure to fill up your propane and gasoline tanks  well in advance of the storm, the closer the storm, the longer the lines at the gas pumps; and they do run out sometimes! Another important thing to do is chocking of the wheels. Chocking the tires on both sides of the tire and doing all the tires is very important.

Now let’s touch base on evacuations briefly if you are going to go and the importance of leaving early. By that I mean a minimum of a full day advance departure, not several hours before the storm is scheduled to hit…unless you like sitting in bumper to bumper evacuation traffic!

I personally know someone that rode out a storm only 10 miles from their home while parked under an overpass. They waited too late to depart and found themselves in gridlock as the storm advanced on them. If you’re going to go – then go! Let me just say it wasn’t much fun for them under that overpass.

There are many hurricane supply lists available of what to have so I won’t add my own, but I will try to think outside the box here. If the water rises there will be a lot of bugs and ants looking for a place to stay dry. My kit would certainly have a couple cans of raid and possibly something for snakes and opossums as they like to stay dry just like us.

If you decide to ride it out BE SMART! – stay inside while it’s going on. Most of the time they don’t last very long but I saw a whole warehouse disappear and I mean it was completely gone along with all the contents. Never found any of the stuff or any parts of the building…so be smart and stay inside!


After the Storm

Once the storm has blown by you will need to give your RV a good going over. First, check the roof to make sure none of the vents blew away. Then go inside and inspect around the slide out rooms for leakage. The outside storage compartments will not hold out a driving rain so it’s a good idea to inspect them also. You will then need to drain the waste tanks so you can begin to use them. If this is a motorhome you will want to start the engine to be sure the rain did not get into the ignition. Chase out any raccoons and opossums and you’re ready to go!

If you do find storm damage or encounter any problems, it is best to have a qualified RV technician or RV Service Center take a look at. One reliable center in Florida for RV repairs and service after a hurricane is Top Notch RV in Fort Pierce or Melbourne Florida.

So be careful and remember to TRAVEL SAFE AND TRAVEL OFTEN, and if a hurricane is coming travel early and travel fast!


Till next time –  RV GARY

Why Are Americans Still Flocking to Costa Rica? Travel Info: How to get to Costa Rica

April 1, 2012

How to get to Costa Rica

Flying to Costa Rica has become easier in recent years, thanks to improvements in its airports and a growing number of airlines that serve them. From the U.S. you can take Aeroméxico, American Airlines, Continental, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Mexicana, Spirit, TACA/LACSA, United or US Airways. The many airlines that fly to Costa Rica from other destinations include Aeroméxico, Air France, Air Canada, Air Panama, British Airways, Iberia, and KLM.

Fares vary widely, depending on such factors as the day of the week and time of year and how far in advance you make reservations. If you made reservations a month in advance, for example, summer fares were recently less than $200 round trip from Chicago to San José. Last-minute winter fares can be three times that amount. Right now because of the spike in gas prices fares are running almost $500 from Miami to San José.

Thinking of a vacation and want to get away?

September 28, 2011

Activities on Bonaire

For over twenty-five years, Bonaire has led the Caribbean in the conservation of its marine resources. Since 1979, all the waters off the island’s coast have been declared a marine park, which has led us to the enviable position of being ranked as one of the finest scuba diving and snorkeling destinations in the world.

Activities on Bonaire: kayaking, sailing, cycling, birdwatching
Kayaking, sailing, cycling or birdwatching

Visitors to Bonaire will soon find that not all the activities are confined to just under or in the sea. We have many more water-related activities that are being discovered by today’s active traveler. As a windsurfing location, the island is becoming well known for our steady tradewinds and protected areas with onshore winds. Our other water sports include both ocean and sea kayaking as well as sailing.

Other topside activities that are being enjoyed by visitors are cycling and nature tours through the “kunuku” or outback. Or, take to the wind with kiteboarding, or see a part of Bonaire rarely seen as you ride horseback on some of the island’s back trails.

Bird watching has always been a rewarding past time here. More and more visitors are enjoying the thrill of catching glimpses of some of our almost two hundred species of birds including our signature bird, the pink flamingo.

A trip to the Washington/Slagbaai National Park will present visitors with starkly beautiful vistas filled with many varieties of cacti, divi-divi trees, unbelievable landscapes and our wildlife, including semi-tame iguanas.

As you browse our pages we are sure you will find what you are looking for in the way of a destination. Above all, Bonaire is one place that takes seriously its responsibility to the environment and has pledged to keep that trust.


8 Great Places to Retire Abroad – Day 8 – Corozal Town, Belize

July 21, 2011
8 Great Places to Retire Abroad – Day 8
8 Great Places to Retire Abroad – Day 8  Corozal Town, Belize
These overseas destinations can offer you a comfortable retirement at affordable costs.

Corozal Town, Belize

Population: 9,901

Climate: Warm year-round, with temperatures mostly in the 80s. Mild rainy season starts in June. Risk of hurricanes.

Proximity to major airport: It’s a short commuter flight via San Pedro — each leg is less than half an hour — to the country’s main airport in Belize City, where connections are available to the U.S.

Access to health care: Corozal Town has its own hospital. More extensive medical options are available ten miles away in Chetumal, the capital of Mexico’s state of Quintana Roo. Belize ranks 24th out of 25 countries on International Living’s Global Retirement Index for health care.

Cost of living: Belize is second on the Global Retirement Index for cost of living, but 19th for real estate. A retired American couple can live comfortably in Corozal Town on $2,500 a month.

The draw: The best of both worlds. The town, located in northernmost Belize, offers retirees beaches and tranquility in Corozal, and big-city amenities such as malls and museums just across the border in Chetumal, Mexico. English is the official language, though Spanish is widely spoken. The government operates a “qualified retired persons” program that allows non-Belizeans to enjoy perks such as tax-free imports of household goods, cars and even airplanes. One-time application and program fees add up to $1,350, plus another $750 per dependent.

8 Great Places to Retire Abroad Day 7- Bearn, France.

July 20, 2011

8 Great Places to Retire Abroad

These overseas destinations can offer you a comfortable retirement at affordable costs.

Great places to retire can be found outside of Florida and Arizona. In fact, many can be found outside of the U.S. entirely. Safe, attractive and affordable places to retire are scattered across the globe, from Latin America to Asia and even Europe. We’ve narrowed our list to eight overseas retirement hot spots.

Bearn, France

Population: 350,000

Climate: Seasonal. Temperatures range from the 30s to 50s in the winter and the 70s to 80s in the summer.

Proximity to airport: The main airport is in Pau. No nonstop flights to the U.S., but easy connections via Paris, London and elsewhere.

Access to health care: France is tops on International Living’s Global Retirement Index for health care. There are several hospitals in the Bearn region, including in the towns of Pau, Orthez, Oloron-Sainte-Marie, Mauleon, Tardets and Mourenx. Private medical insurance is required of non-E.U. residents. The Association of Americans Resident Overseas offers a group plan.

Cost of living: France ranks 18th on the Global Retirement Index for cost of living. A retired American couple can live comfortably on about $2,000 a month.

The draw: Basque in the moment. The Bearn area of southwestern France, near the border with Spain, is influenced by Basque culture from both sides of the Pyrenees (note the berets). The pastoral landscape is dotted with medieval towns, and hunting and fishing are favorite pastimes. There are loads of markets and vineyards to explore, not to mention a fair share of churches and castles. Living in Bearn is cheaper than in better-known parts of France such as Provence, a plus for retirees. France also has an agreement with the U.S. that provides Social Security advantages for people who’ve worked in both countries.

8 Great Places to Retire Abroad – Day 5

July 18, 2011

8 Great Places to Retire Abroad

These overseas destinations can offer you a comfortable retirement at affordable costs.

Nha Trang, Vietnam

Population: 361,454

Climate: It’s hot most of the year. Temperatures hover between the 80s and low 90s. The heart of the monsoon season is November and early December.

Proximity to airport: Cam Ranh International Airport is about 25 miles from downtown Nha Trang. There are no nonstop flights to the U.S.

Access to health care: The 1,000-bed Khanh Hoa General Hospital is located in Nha Trang. International Living didn’t include Vietnam in its Global Retirement Index rankings.

Cost of living: A retired American couple can live comfortably in Nha Trang on $750 a month.

The draw: Live like a king for less. Located on the coast of South-Central Vietnam, Nha Trang is encased by miles of beaches and massive mountain ranges. An American couple can get by on less than $600 a month; $1,000 a month would land you in the lap of luxury. U.S. dollars, preferably crisp, clean ones, are widely accepted. There’s a small population of foreigners in Nha Trang, as well as many restaurants and bars, a supermarket and a mall.

Travelers- 8 Great Places to Retire Abroad, Our 4th retirement city

July 17, 2011
8 Great Places to Retire Abroad, Our 4th retirement city


Granada, Nicaragua

Population: 105,171

Climate: Hot and sticky. Temperatures span the 70s to the 90s, with humidity often high. The wettest months are May to October.

Proximity to airport: It’s 45 minutes by car to Managua’s international airport, where you can catch nonstop flights to the U.S.

Access to health care: Nicaragua tied for 22nd (with Honduras) out of 25 countries on International Living’s Global Retirement Index for health care. In addition to local medical facilities, close proximity to Managua, the capital, gives retirees access to several specialized hospitals.

Cost of living: Nicaragua tied for sixth (with Brazil, Malta and Malaysia) on the Global Retirement Index for cost of living. It tied for second (with Colombia) for real estate. A retired American couple can live comfortably in Granada on $1,250 a month.

The draw: Rooms with a view. Granada, a picturesque colonial city that dates back to the 16th century, sits on the shores of Lake Nicaragua. Brightly painted buildings liven up the architecture, and volcanoes are visible in the distance. There are local restaurants, shops and access to freshwater activities. Nearby Managua has shopping malls, movie theaters and other entertainment options. Look into the government’s incentive program for foreign retirees, which offers duty-free imports and other tax breaks.

8 Great Places to Retire Abroad, Our 3rd retirement city

July 16, 2011
8 Great Places to Retire Abroad, Our 3rd retirement city
Bocas del Toro, Panama

Population: 125,461

Climate: Warm and tropical, with temperatures ranging from the low 70s to high 80s. Rainy season can stretch from May to January.

Proximity to major airport: It’s a one-hour flight to Panama City, where connections are available to the U.S.

Access to health care: There’s a public hospital on Isla Colon, the main island in the Bocas del Toro archipelago. It’s adequate and cheap, but most expats head to David or Panama City for checkups and planned treatments. Panama tied for 12th (with Portugal) out of 25 countries on International Living’s Global Retirement Index for health care.

Cost of Living: Panama tied for 13th (with Costa Rica) on the Global Retirement Index for cost of living. A retired American couple can live comfortably in Bocas del Toro on $1,500 a month.

The draw: Laid-back island living. Bocas del Toro province, on the Caribbean in western Panama, boasts miles of sandy beaches, turquoise waters and sprawling rainforests. The currency is the U.S. dollar and, while Spanish is the country’s official language, English is widely spoken. Panama has a “pensionado” program for retirees that provides discounts on public transportations, entertainment and health care.