Wine Tours

Posted November 9, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: Africa, Collette Tours

Cheers to Wine Tours: A Top 5 List

By: Collette
Do you have a glass of red wine with dinner because you heard it promotes good health? Or maybe you just like the taste of a smooth merlot?

Whatever the reason, travelers today continue to search out tours that include a wine component in the itinerary. There are many places to learn about wine making and its subtle tasting nuances. Italy comes to mind – which is why all of our Italy tours include wine with every meal and a winery visit is included on most Italy programs. Wine tours are on the rise – and in more places than just Italy. Some of Collette’s food and wine tours include:

Forbidden City

Posted November 4, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: Asia, China, Globus Tours

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Get Ready to See the Forbidden City in Beijing with Globus

By: Globus
“Purple Forbidden City” home, though many of their lives were riddled with grief and unhappiness. Instead of enjoying a long life full of opulence and happiness, as most people would imagine, the Chinese emperors were confined to a large “courtyard” within the palace and forced to live a life of solitude. It was believed that the less interaction an emperor had with society, the better they were able to maintain a mysterious image in front of the public.

Although some of the emperors died with glory by conquering enemies, ironically, the majority died having lived a life full of mockery and endless lust. One emperor in particular even committed suicide – unable to bear the anguish and solitude that came with the responsibilities of the throne. With the magnificent red walls and yellow roofs shining in the middle of the city, the palace quickly became a graveyard – engulfing the laughs, tears and dreams of its former residents.

During the 18th Century, there once were more than 100,000 employed servants who also lived in the palace of the Forbidden City during the Ming Dynasty. Even after 1911, when the last emperor of Qing Dynasty stepped down from the throne, the imperial family still maintained more than 2,000 servants to take care of their daily lives. It is said that there are 9,999.5 rooms in the palace – only half of a room less than the “Purple Palace” where the God lives in the legend.

Throughout history, many of the buildings in the Forbidden City were once destroyed by fire, but most have been re-constructed. Today, visitors to the Forbidden City can experience the palace in all of it historical beauty – exploring the Palace Museum while learning about the luxurious lives of the historic rulers of Chinese history.

Hotels in Movies

Posted September 14, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: Travel Trivia

10 Hotels in Movies

Ever wonder what it would be like to stay in the same hotel as Bill Murray in Lost in Translation or wake up in a penthouse suite in Caesars like the guys from the Hangover? Well this is your chance. This is a list of ten hotels which were featured in movies and we can offer you a chance to live large like a movie star with one of our vacation packages.

Caesars Palace

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Movie: The Hangover (2009)

The true comedy of The Hangover begins when three friends Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis wake up in their Caesars’ suite without their groom-to-be friend Justin Bartha. Caesars Palace is famous worldwide for its magnificent beauty and impeccable service. This majestic Las Vegas hotel offers a 129,000 square foot casino, 26 restaurants and cafes, sprawling gardens and pools, a world-class spa, and the renowned Colosseum spotlighting world-class stars. Caesars will allow its guests to find out whether the tagline from The Hangover, “Some guys just can’t handle Vegas,” includes them or not.

St. Regis Bora Bora Resort

Location: Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Movie: Couples Retreat (2009)

St. Regis Bora Bora Resort provided a perfect setting for the Vince Vaughn comedy Couples Retreat where couples in struggling relationships come to this beautiful resort to try to fix their problems. From the Oasis Pool; to the central pool, with a swim-up bar; to the saltwater private lagoon, full of native fish and stingrays, St. Regis allows guests to dive into the many pleasures of paradise. Private villas offer guests a chance to experience one of the most beautiful and romantic islands in the Pacific.

Bellagio

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Movie: Ocean’s Eleven (2001), Ocean’s Twelve (2004), & Ocean’s Thirteen (2007)

The Bellagio is home to Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean’s movies which were jam-packed with A-list actors such as George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Matt Damon. The hotel provides its guests with a retreat unto themselves, the 3,933 Guest Rooms and Suites are an extension of its AAA Five Diamond Award-winning Las Vegas hotel. Bellagio provides a Las Vegas entertainment experience for everyone, whether you prefer high-energy or a more intimate experience.

Park Hyatt Tokyo Hotel

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Movie: Lost in Translation (2003)

This five star hotel, located right in the heart of Shinjuku, one of Tokyo’s best known business districts, provided the main setting of Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation featuring actors Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. Occupying the top 14 floors of Shinjuku Park Tower, Park Hyatt Tokyo hotel overlooks Tokyo and the Kanto Plain all the way to Mount Fuji. Located in the Shinjuku district, this hotel is close to Shinjuku Station, Shinjuku Park, Nishi Shinjuku and areas of Shibuya and Aoyama.

Fontainebleau

Location: Miami, Florida
Movie: Goldfinger (1964), The Bodyguard (1992), & Scarface (1983)

Whether it was Sean Connery as James Bond in Goldfinger, Kevin Costner protecting the star singer Whitney Houston in The Bodyguard, or Al Pacino as the gangster Tony Montana in Scarface this beautiful hotel in Miami Beach has provided the movie industry with a perfect set location for many memorable films. Fontainebleau’s striking design, contemporary art, music, fashion and technology merge into a vibrant new kind of guest experience. The 22-acre oceanfront hotel features signature restaurants by award-winning chefs; two chic nightlife venues; a two-story, 40,000-square-foot spa, expansive poolscape, a pristine Atlantic Ocean beach and state-of-the-art conference and event facilities.

The Grand Hotel

Location:Taipei, China
Movie: Eat, Drink, Man, Woman (1994)

The Grand Hotel in Taipei was the location of the Academy Award nominated movie Eat Drink Man Woman. Supported by red columns and with golden roof tiling, the Grand Hotel stands much like a majestic 14-story palace. The hotel is equipped with 487 rooms which offer a birds-eye-view of bustling Taipei in the day and a serene city at night. The Grand Hotel offers a variety of dining choices, including Chinese, Western and Japanese restaurants.

The 1927 Lake Lure Inn & Spa

Location: Lake Lure, North Carolina
Movie: Dirty Dancing (1987)

The Lake Lure Inn was one of the locations used in the romantic film Dirty Dancing starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. Whether you’re an adventurer seeking a “Dirty Dancing” themed cabin, prefer the nostalgia of the historic Inn, or just need a relaxing weekend laying by the pool the Lake Lure Inn has what you are looking for. From its boat rental service, to its perfect wedding scenery, the Lake Lure Inn will provide guests with a perfect vacation location.

Stanley Hotel

Location: Estes Park, Colorado
Movie: The Shining (1980)

Although the movie itself was not filmed in the Stanley Hotel, the book that inspired it was written about Steven Kings stay in room 217 of the Stanley. Whether you are a big Jack Nicholson fan or Steven King fan, the hotel will bring memories of The Shining to anyone who visits. The Stanley Hotel is a historic landmark hotel in a spectacular mountain-view location, offering old-world charm matched with the latest of modern amenities. Guests can take a ghost and history tour, use the full-service spa or just relax and enjoy the view from your room or suite. The Stanley Hotel sits 7,500 feet above the ordinary in beautiful Estes Park, an hour from Denver and minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park.

Hotel Des Mille Collines

Location: Kigali, Rwanda
Movie: Hotel Rwanda (2004)

Hotel Des Mille Collines is the hotel which was used by Don Cheadle as a shelter to save his fellow countrymen in Rwanda from genocide. The Mille Collines is a four star hotel with a fine setting and personalized service situated in a large exotic garden in downtown Kigali, Rwanda. Enjoy culinary delights and international cuisine in the top floor Restaurant “Le Panorama” with its magnificent view over Kigali.

Beverly Wilshire

Location: Beverly Hills, California
Movie: Pretty Woman (1990) & Beverly Hills Cop (1984

This five star hotel was where Julia Roberts and Richard Gere stayed in the romantic comedy Pretty Woman, and also where Eddie Murphy lived in the hilarious comedy Beverley Hills Cop. In the heart of Beverly Hills this historic hotel buzzes with vitality from dramatic renovations, blending tradition and trend. See-and-be-seen dining and glamorous events are balanced by quiet, personal comfort in the spa, the pool and luxury guest rooms.

The Magic of London and Wales

Posted July 1, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: England, Europe, Tours

Day 1: Depart USA

  • Your trip to Camelot – The Magic of London and Wales begins when you board your evening flight bound for the UK.

    Day 2: Ruthin Castle and Northern Wales

  • Upon arrival in Manchester, collect your luggage and rental car. On the drive to Wales, you’ll be passing through Chester, one of the loveliest parts of England. Enjoy the scenic drive through this 2,000-year-old city that still follows its original pattern dating back to when it was a Roman town.
  • Head toward your accommodations at Ruthin Castle in North East Wales. You’ll feel like King or Queen for a day with two nights in this medieval era castle, once owned by King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I. Although it’s now a stately private hotel, it began as wooden fort that many believe King Arthur frequented. Plan to attend a medieval banquet at Ruthin Castle and dress in period costume, both of which can be reserved for an additional cost to be paid locally at the hotel.
  • We also suggest a day trip to the Snowdonia National Park where you’ll find a host of sites associated with Arthurian folklore. Search for the magical lake, Llyn Llydaw. Locals say Sir Bedivere threw Excalibur into its crystal waters, and a wounded King Arthur sailed from this lake to the Isle of Avalon. Other Snowdonia lakes such as Llyn Dinas and Llyn Ogwen have storied connections to King Arthur and his knights. The mountain itself is said to be the burial place of the giant Ogre Rhita, whom Arthur vanquished. Board the Snowdon Mountain Railway steam train and ride to the highest peak in England and Wales where you can enjoy breathtaking views of the entire region.
  • Overnight: Ruthin Castle

    Day 3: Llangollen in North Wales

  • We suggest a visit to North East Wales and the town of Llangollen where you’ll find the greatest concentration of place names linked to Arthur and his extended family in the world. Search for the Holy Grail at the romantic ruins of Castell Dinas Bran, high atop a hill with sweeping views of Llangollen town. Then visit the haunting Valle Crucis Abbey where the grail mysteries continue. See the rocky cliff called Craig Arthur (Arthur’s Seat) and visit Guinevere’s Cross at Gwenhwyfar, the only site in Britain that shares a name with Arthur’s wife. If you go in early July, don’t miss the International Eisteddfod, a world renowned competition of music and dance held annually in Llangollen.
  • Overnight: Ruthin Castle or similar

    Day 4: Southern Wales

  • As you discover the legend of Camelot in Wales, journey south to Caerleon, a town near Newport just beside the River Usk. In Welsh, the town’s name means “City of the Legion,” but locally it’s known as “Camelot.” Legend says that after the Romans left Britain, King Arthur set up court here. Some believe stories of the round table are linked to the Roman ruins in Caerleon. Find out for yourself with free admission to the Roman Legion Museum. Then head out to explore Chepstow Castle where King Arthur and his Knights are said to be sleeping in a cave until they are once again needed to save Britain. From Chepstow, drive the scenic route through the Wye Valley, past Tintern Abbey to Monmouth. There you can see King Arthur’s Cave, and learn about 12th century Benedictine monk Geoffrey of Monmouth, whose book ‘Historia Regum Britanniae,’ first popularized King Arthur’s story. Stay 2 nights in Southern Wales.
  • Overnight: Southern Wales Hotel in Abergavenny, Cardiff or Bridgend

    Day 5: Southern Wales

  • We suggest spending your final day in Wales discovering the legends of Merlin in Carmarthen, reputed to be the great wizard’s birthplace. In fact, Carmarthen, called Caerfyddin in Welsh, is named for Merlin whose Welsh name is Myrddin. Visit Merlin’s Hill Centre, site of an iron-age hill fort and rumored burial place of Merlin. Then travel eastward to the town of Llandeilo, and stop at Dinefwr castle where Merlin is thought to have communed with spirits in a nearby cave. If you’ve got time for more exploring, head south to the Gower Peninsula, named one of the most beautiful regions in Britain. Look for Arthur’s stone, an ancient burial chamber on the rocky Cefyn Bryn ridge above the ocean.
  • Overnight: Southern Wales Hotel in Abergavenny, Cardiff or Bridgend

    Day 6: London

  • Arrive in London where you can return your rental car or extend at an additional cost to be paid locally.
  • By now you’ve begun to see that Wales and England feature more sites linked to Arthur than any other region in the world. As you travel into London, you can explore claims that Camelot is north of the city near the borough of Hertford. Stroll the grounds of Hertford Castle which some historians suggest became the new home for King Arthur, his knights and the round table. Others think Camelot may have existed at the Royal Hunting Ground at Enfield Chase. Today in the woods of Enfield, you’ll find a little island known as Camlet Moat, steeped in local folklore. Visit these locations to see the remnants of Arthurian legends for yourself.
  • Overnight: London Hotel

    Day 7: London

  • From ancient tales of King Arthur in the countryside your journey brings you back to modern times of new royal fairytales in the city of London. Experience the romance and magic of a contemporary Camelot as you tour London’s iconic royal sites. See Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, and the Tower of London, admission prices at an additional cost to be paid locally.
  • Overnight: London Hotel

    Day 8: London/USA

  • Your Camelot journey comes to an end as you board your plane to depart home.
Land Only Price From $1349*
Air and Land Price From $1349*

Live the legend of Camelot in the land of dragons, wizards, knights, queens and kings. Inspired by the new original series, Camelot, now on Starz, your epic journey begins in Wales. With more castles than any country in Europe, Wales has countless places linked to the mysteries of Merlin, Arthur and the round table. You’ll stay in a castle that legend says King Arthur frequented, and discover Caerleon, a Welsh town thought to be the original Camelot. Plus spend two nights in London, where you’ll have time to see Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and many of the city’s iconic sights. Make your next vacation a magical six-night adventure in Camelot. Your kingdom awaits.
Tune-in to Camelot Fridays at 10pm on Starz and make your next vacation a magical six-night Camelot adventure. Your kingdom awaits.

About Aruba

Posted June 29, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: All Inclusive Resorts, Beach Vacations, Casino

 

60 Second Geography – Aruba

Aruba is a relatively small island. it is only 20 miles long and slightly less than 6 miles across at its widest point. It is one of the Dutch “ABC islands” consisting of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao and only 19 miles off the north shore of Venezuela. It’s easy to get around in Aruba. The public bus is efficient and runs through the hotel zone. Taxis, cars, motorcycles and bicycles are also available for rent.

 

  • They must do something right in Aruba. It has the highest hotel occupancy rates and the highest rate of return visitors of any destination in the Caribbean.
  • Aruba’s leading industry is relaxation. Over 500,000 people visit each year, bringing a lot of money to the island. As a result, Aruba is quite prosperous by Caribbean standards. The locals have good housing, healthcare and education. There is very little history of racial or social strife, so the inhabitants are friendly, warm and open with travelers.
  • The city of Oranjested is the capital and was named after the first king of the Dutch Royal Family, Willem van Orange-Nassau, in 1824. Today it is known as the House of Orange. In Oranjested you’ll find the Aruba Historical Museum and the oldest building in Aruba, Fort Zoutman (1796).
  • One of the real graces of Aruba is its near-perfect weather – a nearly constant phenomenon of sunny skies, warm temperatures, and cool breezes driven off the Caribbean. This island’s low humidity and desert like terrain is likewise nearly a full-time affair as it almost never rains and the island is far below the hurricane belt of the Caribbean.
  • Aruba’s beaches are some of the best in the Caribbean with miles of white, sugary sand. The nearly picture-perfect beach settings and gentle surf are what many people have in mind when they think of this part of the world. Aruba is a desert island full of cacti, iguanas, more cacti, a few aloe-vera plants and unusual boulder formations.
  • While the resort area of the island has very calm, pristine beaches, the north coast features craggy limestone cliffs, caves, sand dunes, and a more energetic surf.
  • In Aruba, there are plenty of activities. It’s a great place to experience snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing or kite surfing. Both experienced and novice practitioners of all these sports find great outlets on Aruba. When you tire of the beach you can dine at the restaurants or do some local shopping. Aruba has two horse competitions each year. The horses are descendants of Andalusian and Arabian horses that were brought to the island by the Spanish conquistadors.

The Mysteries of Machu Picchu

Posted June 28, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: Globus Tours, South America, Tours

 

Discover The Mysteries of Machu Picchu on a Monograms Independent Vacation

By: Monograms
It now seems straight out of Indiana Jones. In the summer of 1911, a dashing American explorer named Hiram Bingham led a Yale University expedition through the jungles near Cuzco to discover an unknown ruin perched on a spectacular Andean crag — the “lost city of the Incas.”

Adventurers had been searching for the site for centuries, although nobody had been sure of its existence. News of the romantic find spread around the world, and Bingham would go on to become a US Senator. But the 1911 “discovery” was actually less heroic than it sounds: Bingham had actually been led there by a local farmer named Melchor Arteaga, whom he had met while camping on the Urubamba River.

Far from being “lost,” the Peruvian peasants of the area had always known about the site, and gave it its name, Machu Picchu, which means Ancient Peak. Still, to modern archaeologists, Machu Picchu raises more questions than it answers. About 1000 people once lived there, in around 200 structures – but why was the spectacular citadel built?

Bingham himself threw out wild theories: At first, he thought he had found the last refuge of the Incas who held out against the Spanish, Vilcabamba. (In fact, he had already come across the real ruins of Vilcabamba, which lay 60 miles to the west, and he had found them unimpressive). He then decided that Machu Picchu was the last holdout of Cuzco’s sacred Virgins of the Sun, who had fled the marauding conquistadors – and for want of another theory, this has certainly held the popular imagination.

A century later, archaeologists are still arguing about the city’s true purpose. Most agree that it was an religious center for the Incas. Beyond that, speculation reigns. Was it part of a province wiped out in a rebellion? Or a royal estate supplying Cuzco with coca leaves? One thing hasn’t changed since 1911: Everyone’s first glimpse of the city poised high above the jungle-covered ravines is one of the most majestic images in South America.

Set your own course for adventure when you take a Monograms vacation to South America. Contact Cherry Travel Agency and plan your adventure!

Receive up to $2500 Resort Credit

Posted June 27, 2011 by Cherry Travel Vacations & Cruises
Categories: All Inclusive Resorts, Beach Vacations, Casino

Up to a $2,500 resort credit at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana(#2390321)
Prices Starting At: $ 870.00*
Date(s): 6/8/2011 – 9/30/2011You’ll save up to $175 with your flight and all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana vacation to the gorgeous beaches of the Dominican Republic.