Budget Travel Warehouse Inc. London Ontario's Blog

A New Year of Travel Trends

Happy New Year!  2017 is ramping up to be an exciting year of travel. So we thought we'd share stories about the hottest travel trends that are going to impact where - and how - you travel in the coming months and even years. What do we see in our crystal ball/ champagne glass?  

Whether you're planning family, 'bleisure' (business/leisure), solo, romantic or couple travels, gal or pal getaways, from the uber luxurious to the economical, 2017 travel will be all about:

  • Wellness and Adventure: Getting outdoors and being active, returning more healthy than when you left, doing something other than pounding pavement or cobblestones every day...  visitors have more and more new, healthy and adventurous (not necessarily dangerous!) ways to experience destinations.
  • Cuba: Travel to Cuba has changed forever now that relations with the US are normalizing. If you haven't already been, there are even more ways to explore one of the world's last restricted travel areas.
  • New Cruise Ships: Ocean or river, luxury or expedition, new cruise ships, with itineraries, designs, amenities, activities and celebrity entertainment or culinary partnerships that battle to outdo each other just keep on coming!  What WILL they do next on a ship? We'll keep you abreast of all the latest developments. If you're one of the last few people who still thinks cruising is about 'blue hair and buffets', you should take a look at the latest generation of cruise ships... and passengers.  There really is a cruise out there for every traveler.
  • Celebrations: Canada commemorates its 150th birthday in 2017, and it's also riding a wave at the top of nearly every 'best place to travel' list.  Did you know as many Americans travel to Canada every year as go to all of Europe?  And with the dollar and other considerations, it's never been a better year for vacationing close to home.  So throughout 2017, we're going to share some of our favorite stories about Canada to inspire your travels. 
  • Local and authentic: Local food, local artisans... everyone is looking for authentic, local production, creation, and consumption. There's a global awareness that we're all looking to be more connected with each other and the items we consume.  Products with provenance and people with passion and rejuvenated cities and neighbourhoods.  There's more and more of it out there to discover.
  • Connecting: Staying connected with those at home, and connecting with the people, Nature, and wildlife where you're traveling.
  • Customization:  It's never been easier to work with a travel expert to craft a trip of your dreams.  In the past, it may have been harder to tweak a trip to get exactly what you want, but a new age of crafting travel itineraries is upon us, at every price point.  If you're just saying 'yes' and dropping down your credit card, you're missing out.

We want to inspire your travel imagination in 2017... and then make those dreams come true!

So we're also introducing BestTrip.TV - an 'online travel TV station' with inspiring videos you can watch right here on our web site (click on BestTrip.TV on our home page).  We'll be sharing BestTrip.TV videos throughout the year.

Safe and memorable travels in 2017!

 

 

 

2016 is Sailing off into the Sunset...

And here at Walnut Grove Travel, we're looking back on some of our best, most inspiring travel stories of the past year... AND bringing you some fresh ideas to start your travels off right in 2017.

Thank you for being part of our community of travel lovers this year.  We wish you a very Happy New Year 2017, and whether you travel on business, for pleasure, on your own, with colleagues, family, friends, or that special someone, we hope you have many exciting and memorable journeys ahead!

(Top Photo: BestTrip.TV in Fort Lauderdale, Florida)

Intrepid Doubles Family-Themed Itineraries

Intrepid Travel is doubling its family-themed tours for 2017 with 48 itineraries tailored to families in two new styles of travel, Comfort and Active Family.

The decision to launch more than 20 tours comes as a result of the increasing demand for multi-generational travel. Intrepid Travel has also experienced significant demand for its teen trips, designed for ages 12 and up, inspiring the launch of teen trekking itineraries in Peru and Nepal, among other destinations.

“Intrepid Travel’s kid-friendly tours shake up the typical family vacation, offering a sense of adventure suited for all generations,” says Leigh Barnes, North America director for Intrepid Travel. “By significantly increasing our Family tours for 2017, we hope to be the go-to operator for family adventure travel.”

Ideal for meeting like-minded families, Intrepid Travel’s family-only adventures offer action-packed experiences steering off the beaten track, away from ball pits and buffets. Transforming travel into a form of education, the tours encourage families to use the world as their textbook by immersing into the destination and culture. With an average group size of 12, travelers can hop aboard local transportation, eat at family-run restaurants and kick back in home-stay accommodations. Family-friendly tours with 2017 departures offer one-of-a-kind experiences including:

  • Act like Mowgli in search for Shere Khan and other Bengal tigers for a true “Jungle Book” experience on the Comfort Northern India Family Holiday.
  • Visit Chiang Mai’s Elephant Nature Park, recognized by World Animal Protection for its protection of elephant welfare, on the Thailand Family Holiday.
  • Punt along the waterways of the Okavango Delta’s vibrant ecosystem by traditional canoe, greeting grunting hippos on the Namibia & Botswana Family Adventure.
  • Take on life as a local Gozitan shepherd for the day, tending to animals, cutting corn, making ‘gbejniet’ cheese and preparing lunch with the host family during the Malta and Gozo Family Holiday.

Start your Trip!

A version of this article previously appeared in TravelPress.com

Our 'Plan a Cruise Month' Smorgasbord of Offers

Mark it on your calendar. October is 'Plan a Cruise Month'. 

This is the time of year when the world's top cruise lines introduce some of their best offers of the year.

And with the nights getting chillier, thoughts of getting away this winter to the Caribbean's turquoise waters, exotic Polynesia, or fun loving Australia leap to mind.  Or an expedition of a lifetime to South America or Galapagos. And there's always Europe and the elegant Mediterranean in the spring.

There's a smorgasbord of cruise offers available right now, so if you were thinking of a romantic escape, a family or multi-generation holiday, an expedition cruise of a lifetime, even an employee incentive trip or a group getaway with your club, here's our round up of some of the best offers available.

Start your Trip!

Ruins of Loropéni The Loropeni fortress was built on a geostrategic location to serve the Ghanaian, Malian and Songhai Kingdoms in their quest to get their gold extractions to the Arabs and European traders. read more
    Ensemble of the Ferapontov Monastery Without belaboring the point, this is one of the most important Russian Orthodox churches monasteries. It has produced a galaxy of important people in the Russian Orthodox Church. If you are a Christian or a lover of history, you are well advised to grace this important monument. read more
Lagoons of New Caledonia: Reef Diversity and Associated Ecosystems you gotta go here The lagoons of New Caledonia are a series of six marine clusters that feature diversity of coral and associated ecosystems. New Caledonia is a French Pacific Ocean archipelago that is home to some of the most extensive reef systems in the world. It is a place of exceptional beauty with beautiful vegetation and a host of marine species. read more
Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System you gotta go here The coast of Belize equals the Western coast of Australia in beauty. While Western Australia has the Great Barrier Reef, the coast of Belize has the Great Blue Hole – both of which are among the modern wonders of the world. The Belizean coast features a submarine reef system that stretches all the way from the Mexico to the north to Guatemala to the south. To reach the barrier reef, you will first pass through the ever popular Belizean atolls – The Lighthouse Reef, The Turneffe Island and Glover’s Reef. read more
5 great bars in Brisbane With a population of 2.2 million people, Brisbane is the most populous city and capital of the Australian state of Queensland. It is also the third most populous city in Australia. The city is nestled along the idyllic River Brisbane, making the city have the allure of Venice, but with an architectural heritage of London. read more
Best Burger joints in Mexico City Note that Mexico City is home to the largest Spanish speaking city population in the world - even bigger than Madrid in Spain. You would expect that Spanish dishes will be more popular than the American burger here, but nay, the Mexicans see themselves more of Americans than Spanish. read more
A brief history of Newfoundland Of the Americas, perhaps the residents thereof ought to thank the Island of Newfoundland which led to further exploration of the continent and eventual settlement into the North America continent. Newfoundland is a large Canadian island located off the east coast of the North American mainland. It also happens to be the most populous region of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Below is a little history about the island. read more
5 Olympic sites you need to see in Beijing Beijing, the capital of the People’s Republic of China is one of the most historical cities in the world. Apparently, the historical Forbidden City, the Palace Museum and the Great Wall of China have their roots in the Beijing's imperial position. Whatever informed the decision to take the 2008 Summer Olympics to the city, it was one of the best decisions that the event organizers have made yet. The Beijing authorities, in a bid to showcase the city as the next big thing, went out of their way to create world beating sporting facilities and sites. Below are the most popular of these facilities. read more
10 Interesting facts about the Banaue Terraces Banaue Rice Terrace’s are found on the mountains of Ifugao and were carved there about 2,000 years ago by the ancestors of the present day Philippines. It is said that they were built by hand and were used to plant rice. Below are a few interesting facts about the terraces. read more
5 things you didn't know about Chicago The City of Chicago was incorporated as a city in 1837, near a portage between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River watershed. With a population of 2.7 million people, it is the third largest city in the United States after New York and Los Angeles. read more
5 things to do in Fort Myers Beach Considered in general terms, Florida is a vacation state. It boasts long stretches of golden sand beaches, an active night scene, a host of natural attractions and a variety of eateries that serve the best American and Mexican Cuisines. However, none of its many holiday hotspots can rival Fort Myers Beach in Lee County's Estero Island. The town is a hot bed of tourist activities as espoused below. read more
Visit the historical Pyramids of Giza For over 3,800 years, the pyramid of Giza stood tall and proud, commanding respect for the great Egyptian civilization. It was not until late 18th century that modern architecture built buildings that could rival the pyramid of Giza. read more
The Best Luxury Hotels in Las Vegas Las Vegas is a name that is recognizable just about anywhere in the world and people from all over the world travel there for everything from high stakes gambling to great man-made scenery. But one thing that Las Vegas is known for is great hotels and some of the best of the best in hotel accommodations can be found right here in this article. read more
The Finest Luxury Hotels in New York City No matter what the topic, when you are talking about New York City, there is rarely any introduction needed. New York is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world and is the hub America's finance, fashion, and entertainment industries. And if there is one thing that there is no shortage of in New York City, it is luxury hotels. read more
Miami's Hottest Hotels As one of the trendiest and most popular tourist destinations in the world, Miami, Florida is home to some of the most exciting places to lay your head at night. Hotels in Miami are often more than just a comfortable place to stay. Many of them are an experience unto themselves. read more
Join the tribe in Papua New Guinea On the Southwestern Pacific Ocean is the region generally called Melanesia. Part of Melanesia is the Island of New Guinea which is divided into two regions. The western part is called Papua and is part of Indonesia and the Western part is called Papua New Guinea which is a country on its own. Its capital is known as Port Moresby. Operating from Port Moresby is Papua New Guinea Tribal Foundation, a non-governmental organization that seeks to alleviate societal problems in the country. read more
What's hot on Broadway in New York for 2014? If you have already been to New York City for a vacation but have never been to a Broadway show, then the list of shows scheduled for 2014 should be reason enough to return to the Big Apple to see your first. read more
Explore a Galaxy Far, Far Away with LosApos Star Wars Tours Star Wars is one of the most watched movie series around the world. One of the things that make this production stand out, is the out of this world scenes. Most Star War lovers will not imagine that these locations are just here on earth and none is in a far way part of the cosmos. read more
Italy's Top 10 Tourist Attractions You can go to Italy and travel the countryside if you want to; but you would much rather see those sights everyone talks about. read more
Experience Luxury Accommodations at Baha Mar Just to put things in perspective, when complete, the project will have 4 five star hotels, with a total of 2,200 rooms. As if this is not huge enough, the project will have 307 private residences, and a 9,300 square meters casino. The casino happens to be the Baha Mar Resorts Ltd flagship project and thus a lot of details have gone into making it a world-class gambling center - big enough to rival those in Las Vegas. read more
Board Royal Caribbean Cruise at Jamaica's Port of Falmouth Don't let this amazing cruise -- and the chance to be in beautiful Jamaica -- miss you! read more