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Old 05-28-2013, 11:03 AM   #961
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I have most of that itinerary figured out - but suggestions for the southern part of Ireland (outside Dublin and excluding Ring of Kerry - both we already have on the list) would be good.
May I suggest West Cork? Fly to Cork Airport (ORK) and within an hour's drive you will be enjoying the scenic coast. Kinsale is the gourmet capital of Ireland. Bantry is also a good base. Castletownbere, Clonakilty, Glengarriff, Gougane Barra, the Beara Peninsula, Mizen Head........

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Old 05-29-2013, 06:15 AM   #962
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Getting ready for a big trip next month:

First week starts in Seattle then cruises up the inside passage of Alaska.

Second week is in Denali National Park.

Third week is relaxing in Vancouver and Victoria.

We have a few plans, but any suggestions for anywhere in those regions would be most welcome!
If you are stopping in Seward, I highly recommend a Kenai Fjords National Park water tour. Such great memories we have from that day! We saw so much wildlife.

Denali was fabulous. We rode the school bus in 66 miles to Eielson. It's a long day, but a great way to see the park. Also, you can go visit the sled dogs at the park and watch a demo by the rangers of them pulling a sled around the track (no snow, but still very cool).

We also stopped in Juneau and went out to the park and hiked right up to the glacier there. So cool. Oh and do not miss a tour for Humpback whales. Several came so close to our boat!

Enjoy! It was the trip of a lifetime for me!
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Old 05-31-2013, 07:08 AM   #963
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Logging in from Guatemala where I am teaching a microbiology class this morning before flying back to the US this weekend. My Spanish is not great but it should be fun. :-)
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:51 PM   #964
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Getting ready for a big trip next month:

First week starts in Seattle then cruises up the inside passage of Alaska.

Second week is in Denali National Park.

Third week is relaxing in Vancouver and Victoria.

We have a few plans, but any suggestions for anywhere in those regions would be most welcome!
When I did the inside passage cruise, DW and I spent most of our time outside looking at mountains and taking photographs. We found places to sit that had bars nearby or just inside, of course. It was a little chilly, and mostly sunny, but worth it. It is not like a typical cruise with ocean all around as often there was coastline and mountains on both sides of the ship. There were only a handful of other people on the deck at any one time. Everyone else was inside doing cruisey-type things like art shows, shopping, whatever banal events they have to help folks spend money. I couldn't believe it!! So my advice is get outside and see the scenery. I planned my trip attire just for that.
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Old 06-06-2013, 05:23 AM   #965
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No, but I am going in July. Please post your observations.
Arrived home, last evening, from the Great Czech Flood of '13, (will post some pics once my technologically inclined spouse sorts/files & discards).......some initial random thoughts:

- Prague, especially the Old Town, was crowded during rainy, cold, late May/early June.......warm & sunny July? I can only imagine!

The first Sunday we were there we got up early, caught a tram/streetcar and were down at the Charles Bridge, (where we'd been part of the herd the previous day), at 05:00 a.m...........just as a tourist bar at one end of the bridge was letting out.....but we did have an almost empty bridge....and when we walked up to the Palace area there was pretty much just us.

- Graffiti...lots of it, but thankfully not around the old section.

- Transit system......we bought 30 day passes, (a good deal for us, even though we were only there for 12 days......we gave them to a young girl serving coffee at the airport as we were leaving....she was delighted).

Trams/streetcars, subway/Metro, excellent......we'd get on/get off on a whim, go here/go there, go back to the apartment for a break......unlimited trips with the pass, and not once were we asked to produce them.

Trains.....likewise excellent...did a few day trips, would have done more but for the weather, (on our penultimate day we cancelled a trip to one town we wanted to see when it was announced that they were evacuating people due to the flooding).

(An aside.....a male announcer at the main station, giving periodic updates in English, sounded exactly like the old SNL Steve Martin/Dan Akyroyd "Wild and crazy guys" skit.)

Views......among others, we did the Petrin Observation Tower, (the funicular cost was covered by the transit pass, (ha, so we did show them), but not the tower itself.......being 70 I asked for, and pretty much always got, the old fart's discount......my child bride, at 60, wasn't eligible).

Panoramic shots of the river/old town from the tower.

(We also went up the old Tower by the main square......get in line, hurry up and wait...and wait...and.....again, July I dunno.)

Our apartment wasn't in the old section, or even right downtown, but it was great, and easily accessible by public transit.

There's more, but that's all I can think of at the moment....still tired, (not much sleep the night before our early flight back........again, went from the apartment to the airport on public transit, using the passes we didn't have to show).
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Old 06-06-2013, 06:00 AM   #966
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Fairly minor for us. We are going to Cape Cod for a week in Mid Aug. Will be our first trip there since we had our child. Will be fun for him to play on the beach.
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:21 AM   #967
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Nemo, the flooding sounds pretty rough over there--we've been monitoring it a bit, but hope it will recede by the time we are passing through in Mid-July. Wish we were spending time in Prague, but the road will be calling!
Can't wait to see your pictures...after you get some rest!
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:46 AM   #968
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Nemo, the flooding sounds pretty rough over there--we've been monitoring it a bit, but hope it will recede by the time we are passing through in Mid-July. Wish we were spending time in Prague, but the road will be calling!
Can't wait to see your pictures...after you get some rest!
Too tired to sleep.......we're both 'fogging' our way through chores right now.

One report we heard/read while there was that the last time the river through Prague had experienced such water volume was 50 years ago......the day prior to our leaving, (when we had hoped to do another train trip), we went downtown......the Charles Bridge was closed to the public, as were some Metro stations, 60 palace guards had been commandeered to assist in the effort to avoid more flooding, tongue in groove metal barriers had been erected along sections of the embankment, and sand bags abounded.

A couple days prior, on another train trip, we rode alongside an extremely swollen river......saw a couple/few camper trailers that had presumably been parked on the bank.....they were now in the water, and probably not far from being 'downstream'.
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:47 AM   #969
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Recovering from an odyssey. DD and family were moving within London w/ three kids, so spent a week there playing Grandpa and babysitter while the parents dealt with logistics. Then to Morogoro Tanzania via Dar es Salaam to visit with son for a few days. Then we flew to Durban SA via Joberg so he could run his 3rd Comrades Marathon (54 miles -ugh), Then back on plane to Joberg-Atlanta- and home. That 16 hour flight from Joberg to Atlanta really pushes one's limits. At least mine. Highlight was my having to drive rental car from start of marathon (Durban) to end (Pietermaritzberg), my first driving on left side. Went amazingly well except for last 12 inches, where while parallel parking I destroyed the left front wheel cover!

What was amazing about the Comrades is the age of the runners. I'd guess average was over 40 (18,000 registered). There were a lot of people in 50's and older, many having run it 10, up to 20 times. Son pointed out that no one puts those "26.2" stickers or similar advertisements on vehicles, like "I ran Comrades." Just do it, many year after year, for the sake of doing it. South Africans are a tough bunch.

Last note: just after arrived in SA the Rand dropped precipitously, so for ONCE in international travel got better than US prices on food and lodging!
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:51 AM   #970
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Last note: just after arrived in SA the Rand dropped precipitously, so for ONCE in international travel got better than US prices on food and lodging!
There is nothing better than a big devaluation when you are traveling on a budget and paying in local currency. It's like free money.
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:28 AM   #971
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Getting ready for a big trip next month:

First week starts in Seattle then cruises up the inside passage of Alaska.

Second week is in Denali National Park.

Third week is relaxing in Vancouver and Victoria.

We have a few plans, but any suggestions for anywhere in those regions would be most welcome!
Victoria is awesome!

Victoria, British Columbia, A Perfect Summer Destination - InfoBarrel
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:57 AM   #972
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I'll be driving back to visit Las Vegas sometime later this month and plan to stay 3 or 4 days in the city (maybe). I'm not sure exactly what day I'll start this trip but that's what's nice about retirement. Just get up and go. Plan to stop by the Painted Desert, Grand Cannon and maybe swing up to southern Utah to see Zion National Park again on the way. I'll probably take a different route on the return trip and I "may" stop by Carlsbad Caverns... I've made this trip and visited all these sites several times before I was retired but I always seemed to be so rushed. Not this time....
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Old 06-11-2013, 10:04 PM   #973
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Happy about this news. Eldest son is in Portland, ME. Some airfare deals were posted today, so DH and i grabbed a deal for late October. About $40 more than the good ol' days, but less than we have seen in quite a while and we are so ready to see him...plus the crotchety FIL in MA, lol.

We fly so seldom, actually making our minds up to commit is scary, but once we book, we are happy to start planning the trip.
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Old 06-13-2013, 11:22 AM   #974
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I am interested in hearing from anyone who has taken a Black Sea cruise. Currently considering Swan Hellenic out of Athens. 2014.
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Old 06-20-2013, 08:16 AM   #975
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Nemo, the flooding sounds pretty rough over there--we've been monitoring it a bit, but hope it will recede by the time we are passing through in Mid-July. Wish we were spending time in Prague, but the road will be calling!
Can't wait to see your pictures...after you get some rest!
Your worst nightmare come true.....here they are: http://sdrv.ms/19kKWRa

(You may have to click on the first pic to activate the slide format.)
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Old 06-20-2013, 11:05 AM   #976
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Just great! And I'll have you know that the slideshow was a great accompaniment to my sandwich at lunchtime--very enjoyable!

I like your captions. And your legs must be in great shape after climbing all those towers! It is definitely a beautiful place and I appreciate your sharing the highlights.

The concentration camp is especially chilling, and the symbolic laundry shot is compelling And I can't believe the flooding! And that it got worse after that to cover the bridge! Yikes!
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Old 06-20-2013, 11:40 AM   #977
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The Charles Bridge was closed to the public, but it wasn't underwater......boy, that WOULD be a flood.
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Old 06-20-2013, 11:49 AM   #978
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Ah, that makes a bit more sense! When I saw your picture, and I remembered reading the news story, I thought--wow, that water rose a LOT! Thanks for the clarification! We'll be in Klatovy, south of Prague, as we make our way across Europe. Should be interesting to see how flooded that part is by the third week of July.
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Old 06-29-2013, 09:30 AM   #979
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Just back from 2 weeks in Jesolo, Italy - near Venice... here are pics:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/e3flogjwggr3wmi/VqZPCbkHN3

Jet lag is harder at 65!!!
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Old 06-29-2013, 09:13 PM   #980
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Just back from a leisurely three week camping trip with the travel trailer to Cloudland Canyon, Georgia (a beautiful state park) and then up the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Now planning a fall camping trip to Colorado, Utah, New Mexico with a return east through Texas and up the Natchez Trace.
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