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Travel Deals?

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Goaldeje

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Last year in the Spring, I took the family to the Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, which they loved. Saved up again, and am getting more back on taxes than expected, so i was thinking about something a little nicer this year. One option is to take Mrs. Goaldeje (that's what I call her in bed) to Florence for a week, which by my estimates would run about 3k, give or take. Then it occurred to me that there might be cheaper alternatives that we would enjoy as much. Sooooo... any suggestions? Got any great travel deals that you know of, or great websites to find cool stuff? We are pretty open I think, within reason.
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SabreAce33

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If you liked Williamsburg, there are some options in town that are a little nicer, and the travel there/back is easy. We stay once a year at a Bed and Breakfast. The Bentley Manor Inn:

http://www.bentleymanorinn.com/
http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Re...-Bentley_Manor_Inn-Williamsburg_Virginia.html

Can't say enough about Fred and Jane, the owners. Other options are the Williamsburg Lodge or Inn, but I think the B&Bs in town are a much better deal. Plenty of good recommendations I can offer on good food in the area too.
 

Goaldeje

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I grew up there, pretty familiar with it, we went for the waterpark which the kids loved. Would like to go somewhere different, thinking about just with the wife. We got married almost 14 years ago and have had maybe two trips in that time with just the two of us. Considering Vegas bc that's where her sister is. But I love the idea of Paris or Florence. Open to other suggestions too.
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Elephant

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Oahu- its not that expensive if you wait until may (offseason) and its familiar yet exotic. I'm going in late may probably.

This is true of many tropical destinations. Not sure what it's like in Hawaii, but I can tell you the tropics/Florida Keys and Caribbean get hot in the summer months. I know that may be stating the obvious, but until you've lived it, you're not really prepared for it. If you can stand heat like that, there are great deals in the tropics like Ryman suggests. I can't stand the heat so I would go north in the summer months.

As for European destinations, check the peak months or off-season. If you're willing to go in say, the colder months, deals are out there.


I wish I could afford a trip to Tanzania! That is where I want to go most. Lake Victoria, Ngorogoro Crater, Serengeti, Kilimanjaro, Zanzibar.
 

McD5

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I'm planning a quick vacation for this coming Thursday to Sunday somewhere. I'll be flying from Orlando, and am trying to decide between the following:

Malibu, CA
New York City
Atlantis, Bahamas
Jamaica

I've been online searching for hours now. I can't decide where to go, but I need a vacation badly.

And Goaldeje, I can direct you to some great sites. But you would need to narrow your search first. Travelzoo is a good place to start.

Also, I have been to a good number of places--mostly islands. I am happy to offer some suggestions if you are interested in anything in the caribbean.
 
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Goaldeje

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McD, is there a site that allows you to indicate where you live, and then plug in the dates that are convenient for you to travel, then it shows you a bunch of different options and deals? That's kind of what I am looking for. I am not set on anything or anywhere. Would just like to take her someplace nice, am open to islands, cruises, Europe, Vegas, wherever.

Also frustrated that I can't find the awesome Vegas deals people tell me about.
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McD5

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I would start with travelzoo.com. They have deals to everywhere, including Vegas. In the top left corner, they have the best new deals listed to anywhere in the world. Or, in the middle of the screen, you can just type in a destination, and see the deals offered. If you simply type in Las Vegas for example, you will find the awesome deals you are looking for.

And...you may be a mind reader. I have narrowed my choices down to Vegas or the Bahamas. It's looking like Atlantis is in the lead right now.

If you are interested in the islands Goaldeje, I would seriously spend some time looking into Saint Martin. Honestly, any island that starts with Saint is good. But Saint Martin is really an incredible place. You and your wife would absolutely love it.
 

Goaldeje

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Good deal, I will play around on TravelZoo and see what I can find. Looking more and more like the misses wants Vegas to see her sister. I will see what I can put together.
 

McD5

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Good deal, I will play around on TravelZoo and see what I can find. Looking more and more like the misses wants Vegas to see her sister. I will see what I can put together.
Have you been to Vegas before? I love it there.
 

Goaldeje

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Yeah, I went for work last year, and stayed an extra day to hang out with my sister in law. Did well with Blackjack and actually left on top. Saw the Blue Man Group and had some great food. All in all, it was a great trip. My wife has never been though, I think she will love it.
 

Miles Monroe

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I've been to Florence, and while I love South Carolina, I wouldn't stay a week:)

I would love to have gone to florance when in Italy this past summer, but also wanting to see the town / area my Grandparents came from kept us in Southern Italy. I'm also not generally into the major tourist traps unless I have a lot of time, which we didn't.

We spent much of our time in Sorrento, and it's quite affordable. It's a popular tourist spot, but not as crazy as most. From Sorrento, we visited the Isle of Capri, which is one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen. We also visited Naples, and spent more then a full day just in Sorrento. They shut down the main street in town at night so people can go out walking. Very cool place.

We stayed at a small hotel in the hills just above the town so we would have some nice peace and quiet. Hotel Il Nido. It's rated one of the ten best bargins in Italy by Trip Advisor, and we really loved the place. They don't have a pool, but that wasn't an issue for us. The staff was outstanding, and stayed on duty long beyond normal hours while we sat on the terrace with some other guests. Food was great, and I'm an eater, and Italian, so trust me on this one.

There are many great deals in the Sorrento area. You can do day trips to Rome and other destinations from there.

Check out my blog on the Noosphere. I added it into my motorcycle blog, but it goes from the planning stages through the entire trip. Lots of pics from the trip. We went in late June into early July. Airfare cost us about 2400$. We rented a car, which unless you have some crazy driving skills, and nerves of steel. Train from the airport to the station in Sorrento, and shuttle to the hotel would have been the wise choice if we hadn't planned on driving down to Calabria / Carolei.

If you do end up going to Italy, let me know. I bought a euro power strip to plug all my goodies into at night. I didn't need a converter, as all my chargers will work on US of foreign voltage / Htz. I'll be happy to lend it to you.
 

Goaldeje

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Miles, I have been to Florence three times now, and love it. I have a (useless) degree in Art History, so there really is no place on earth that can compare.

Sadly ,i think my wife wants to go and see her sister in Vegas. Don't get me wrong, i enjoy Vegas a great deal, but Florence is... well, different. My dream is to rent a house or an apartment in Florence for a month, visit all the museum multiple times, and get to really know the cooking of the region. I would like to be able to visit the market each day, then the butchers, and so on, then cook meals specific to the Florentine cuisine. My parents spent a week in San Gimigianno this Fall and loved it. It is close enough to Florence to work well too.

But for now, i guess I will have to settle for gambling and showgirls.

Did that sound like a complaint? My apologies if it sounded like whining...
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Lanky Livingston

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I'm going to Belize in June for probably 10 days. Gonna stay on Amergris Caye, but will most likely go onto the mainland for ruins and a zip-line tour. Cannot wait!
 

McD5

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But for now, i guess I will have to settle for gambling and showgirls.

Did that sound like a complaint? My apologies if it sounded like whining...
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I love Vegas. But I'm not a huge fan of bringing girlfriends there for many reasons. I always have more fun when it's a guy's trip.



I'm going to Belize in June for probably 10 days. Gonna stay on Amergris Caye, but will most likely go onto the mainland for ruins and a zip-line tour. Cannot wait!
Very jealous here. Belize and Bora Bora are on the top of my list. And ten days? Wow! I can never take ten days off. Awesome for you, and I hope you love it.
 

Miles Monroe

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I'm the same way. When I go to Florance it's going to be an extended stay. Most folks don't know, but I had once aspired to be an art / photography teacher, so Florance has been a place I've dreamed of for many years. The door was open for me to go to some of the best art programs in the country, but being young and dumb, money led me in another direction.

The regional diversity of the foods of Italy is like none other, as it can vary from one town to another in a small area. It was funny the Sunday we strolled through a small Italian village near where my family comes from, and the breeze hit me with the smell of my mothers kitchen. Only a very specific recipe due to the available stocks of food, and age old tradition will produce that exact smell.

There's so much of Italy I want to experience on my terms, it will take a 6 month trip at the least. Some day, the time will come when I have no things to keep me from extended travel... dependent daughter... pets... work... and I'll make it happen. I honestly consider retirement there.

Have fun in Vagas. I know many who love the place. I've never had the least interest in visiting the place, and being I love to girl watch, and party, it makes little sense.
 

Goaldeje

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Sounds like our paths are actually fairly similar Pete. I was accepted into Yale's grad school for Art History, but foolishly turned it down, chasing the corporate money life instead. One of my major regrets.

Who knows, maybe we will cross paths one day in a small Tuscan village somewhere? Stranger things have happened, you know. My parents returned in Nov from a ten week trip to Switzerland, France and Italy and I am most jealous of the time they spent in the countryside, just... being. If that makes sense. Your descriptions of your mother's kitchen is perfect, I do not have that, but I do have the sense of relaxing and being still.

But Vegas will be fun too. McD, I have never been to Vegas with just friends, only business trips or with my wife. Someday, perhaps.
 

riggins44

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My wife is an artist and our 20th anniversary is coming soon. I got to start planning to take her somewhere, problem is it will only be for long weekend. With our work schedules, kids, and stepdaughter getting married can't do anything longer.

Thought about going to New York, somewhere in FL, or even to the Jefferson in Richmond. If go to Jefferson Hotel want it to rain all weekend so we just stay in the room. :)

Will go somewhere where she can enjoy the art or inspire a painting. For me it will be about the food.
 

Lanky Livingston

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My wife is an artist and our 20th anniversary is coming soon. I got to start planning to take her somewhere, problem is it will only be for long weekend. With our work schedules, kids, and stepdaughter getting married can't do anything longer.

Thought about going to New York, somewhere in FL, or even to the Jefferson in Richmond. If go to Jefferson Hotel want it to rain all weekend so we just stay in the room. :)

Will go somewhere where she can enjoy the art or inspire a painting. For me it will be about the food.
New Orleans is great for art as well as food, and a weekend trip is a good amount of time to spend there.
 

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