As I write this letter, in the midst of one of the mildest winters (so far) on record in Ontario, my thoughts turn not to a winter wonderland and to skiing but rather to setting off on various trips and heading to warmer climes in 2016. I’m starting my planning accordingly, and perhaps, as you read this issue, you might find yourself thinking the same way.
Naturally I have some ideas about the places I’d like to see and the ships on which I wish to cruise. Invitations are arriving to sail certain cruise lines and attend gala events celebrating the arrival of some very beautiful new vessels.
The cruise industry is a vibrant one and I have counted nearly 27 new ships so far that will be launched this year – several of them very high-end – luxury lines like the Regent Seven Seas’ Explorer and the new Seabourn Encore. There will also be a ship from the popular upscale line, Oceania as well as the new Holland America ship, ms Koningsdam, another new vessel from Royal Caribbean and of course, as is customary these days, a number of new river ships that will soon be plying European and Asian waterways.
Like many of you, I enjoy perusing the pages of travel magazines, and reading guidebooks about various cities and countries. I particularly like to plan ahead and feel that the anticipation of a trip is part of the whole wonderful experience –a very enjoyable aspect! I suspect many of you are thinking about where you might like to venture this year. Hopefully, some of our articles will give you not only pause for thought, but will perhaps truly pique your interest about a world of vacation options. It’s time to book now and get the best offers and the right dates for travel and to take advantage of promotions and savings from a wide range of travel providers.
I’m working on reaching the century mark on my list of countries visited. I’d been stalled for a very long time at 89 but finally, last May, I visited Malta, my 90th – a place to which I long to return as it truly captivated me. I’d better get busy and travel further afield to rack up a few more countries if I’m going to hit the 100 mark in the next few years! If you wonder how many countries you might have visited along the way, check out this website: www.travelerscenturyclub.org . Enjoy counting off the countries – some of which may surprise you - (I always like to remind everyone that the Vatican in Rome counts as a separate country from Italy as it prints its own currency!)
One of the continents to which I have yet to journey is South America. Peru, featured in this magazine, is certainly one of the countries I would visit, along with Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands and of course Brazil and Argentina. Perhaps 2016 will find me journeying southward!
Join me on a journey of anticipation, as we decide where we should go this coming year, how we’ll get there and what delightful memories we’ll make along the way.
Travel – it’s a wonderful way of life!
P.S. I always recommend a travel advisor to help you plan your cruise and land vacations.