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Travel News

By Judy Newell


Mexico Travel News

How San Miguel Became #1

This summer, Travel+Leisure ranked San Miguel de Allende first among 15 of the world’s best cities in its “World’s Best Awards.” To compile the list, the magazine asked readers to weigh in on such criteria as sights and landmarks, culture, cuisine, friendliness, shopping, and overall value.

Readers named San Miguel de Allende as the friendliest city in the world. It earned top marks as being among the best small cities in the world no doubt because of its pleasant blend of locals and expats, great weather, charming cobblestone streets, and leafy squares that dot the historic Old Town.


Mexico City Upgrading Security Infrastructure

Mexico City is stepping up security with a sweeping plan to install thousands of high-tech cameras and enhance its seismic alert system. Mexico News Daily reports the destination will have 8,500 next-generation surveillance cameras in operation by the end of 2017.

The city already boasts 7,000 working advanced cameras. With the new additions, more than half of its 15,310 units will be able to record and transmit high-definition images, utilizing infrared night-vision technology in poorly-lit areas.

Mexico City will also update its seismic alert system by the end of the year in an effort to widen its coverage. The city currently has more than 11,350 nine-meter posts equipped with loudspeakers to warn of impending tremors. Moving forward, speakers will be added to 2,382 additional posts in boroughs that are most susceptible to earthquake damage, including Coyoacán, Benito Juarez, and Cuauhtemoc.

Last month, the Mexico Tourism Board announced that airports, attractions, and accommodations in Mexico City and throughout the country’s other popular tourist destinations were fully open and operational.

International News

Pride of South Africa

Experience five-star luxury on this epic South Africa safari vacation. Visit captivating Cape Town, enjoy stylish safaris at Amakhosi, and relax on Durban’s white sandy beaches. Eleven nights from $3,999 per person, air inclusive from the US.

Discover Africa’s iconic wildlife on safari game drives with expert rangers; Cape Town’s stunning scenery and vibrant culture; and the endless, white sandy beaches in Durban, a beautiful coastal city.

Experience stunning views from your room at the astounding Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa in Cape Town; Amakhosi Safari Lodge, a luxury safari lodge renowned for its majestic wildlife; and luxury accommodations at The Oyster Box, voted the #1 Hotel in South Africa by TripAdvisor.

And you will enjoy delicious sundowner cocktails halfway through your afternoon safari game drives and delectable dinners at Amakhosi Safari Lodge.


Waldorf Astoria’s Condo Conversion

New York City’s iconic Waldorf Astoria will keep 350 hotel rooms while the remainder of the historic building is converted into condos. When it closed earlier this year, the hotel had 1,413 guest rooms.


Cruise News

Star Clippers Discounts for Military and Veterans

In honor of Veteran’s Day, Star Clippers is offering all US veterans, active military personnel, and their families 15 percent savings on any upcoming Star Clippers sailings when booked by November 30.

After the 15 percent special promotion deadline has passed, Star Clippers will offer 10 percent savings year-round for all active military personnel and veterans, which can be combined with other deals and incentives.

For more than 25 years, Star Clippers has brought travelers to remote ports in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Indonesia, Thailand, and Singapore aboard its modern tall-ship sailings. Star Clippers operates three of the world’s largest and tallest sailing vessels: Star Clipper, Star Flyer, and Royal Clipper.

Star Clipper and Star Flyer are both traditional clipper ships with modern amenities carrying 170 guests, while the 227-guest Royal Clipper holds the Guinness World Record as the largest and only five-masted, full-rigged sailing ship in service today.

All three ships have expansive teak decks, swimming pools, informal dining, tropical bars on deck, and piano lounges. The brand’s newest vessel, Flying Clipper, will debut at the end of 2018.


Venice to Restrict Large Cruise Ships

Italy’s transport minister has announced a plan to ban large cruise ships from Venice’s historic center. Ships weighing over 55,000 tons will have to dock in the industrial port of Marghera, which is northwest of Venice’s historic center.

Ships will no longer be able to access the Giudecca Canal, which passes next to Piazza San Marco. The new restrictions are set to take effect in four years. Cruise ship passengers make up only about five percent of overall visitation to Venice, and city officials have been considering other restrictions on tourism in general.


Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

“We are torn between nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and strange. As often as not, we are homesick most for the places we have never known.”–Carson McCullers


Deal of the Week

Group Vacation Specials for 2018

Italian Treasures: Savor local cuisine, visit architectural treasures and more on this amazing Italy tour with overnights in Rome, Lucca, Florence, Venice Island, and Assisi. Eleven days, roundtrip Rome, from $2,649.

Britain Sampler: From historical sights to beautiful scenery, this tour is a great way to sample what Britain has to offer. Nine days, roundtrip London, from $1,649.

Introduction to Ireland: An ideal introduction to the Emerald Isle, this tour offers overnights in Dublin, Ennis, Killarney, and Waterford. Seven days, roundtrip Dublin, from $1,349.

The Best of Switzerland: Experience some of Switzerland’s most beautiful scenery and interesting cities with overnights in Zurich, St. Moritz, Lugano, Zermatt, Lake Geneva, and Lucerne. Eight days, roundtrip Zurich, from $2,579.

Rates are per person in USD, based on double occupancy, land only.

Judy Newell, an international travel consultant for over 40 years, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, abilities, and budget. Please contact Judy for further information on Travel News topics and around-the-world travel; cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949 300 3682; email Her office is in Rancho Los Labradores, Car. a Dolores Hidalgo. View the latest travel specials on the website


Sources: Travel+Leisure, Travel Pulse, Lion World Travel, New York Post, Star Clippers, Travel Agent Central, Globus


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