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Travel News

By Judy Newell

Mexico News

Riu Opens New Resort in Costa Mujeres

Riu Hotels and Resorts has opened a new property in México’s emerging Costa Mujeres. The new Riu Palace Costa Mujeres is the company’s nineteenth hotel in México, and its second in Costa Mujeres.

The new resort is laid out so that all of its restaurants and bars are on the upper floors of the complex, providing them with direct views over the sea, the hotel’s pools and gardens, and its beach.

The Riu Palace Costa Mujeres offers all-inclusive service with 24-hour room service, as well as free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel. The resort has 670 guest rooms, and five pools, two of which have swim-up bars, and a reserved area on the beach with lounge chairs and umbrellas. The newly-built hotel also offers entertainment programs for adults, sports activities, and art, as well as live shows, a gym, and a spa.

Cruise News

Fly Free to Europe with AMAWaterways

Offer extended to December 31, 2018: Due to overwhelming demand for AMA’s 2019 cruise collection, they are extending the free roundtrip airfare offer.  When you book select AmaWaterways departures by December 31, you’ll fly to Europe on select departures from more than 60 US and Canadian gateways.


Romantic Danube: 7-night cruise from Vilshofen to Budapest; 2019 dates: March 22, 31; April 28, aboard the AmaCerto or AmaLea.

Melodies of the Danube: 7-night cruise from Budapest to Vilshofen; 2019 dates: March 23; April 6, aboard the AmaViola or AmaCerto.


Tulip Time: 7-night roundtrip cruise from Amsterdam; 2019 dates: March 23, aboard the AmaPrima.

Magnificent Europe: 14-night cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest or reverse; 2019 dates: June 30; July 28, aboard the AmaViola or AmaStella.

Rhine & Moselle Delights: 10-night cruise from Basel to Amsterdam; 2019 dates: October 23, aboard the AmaPrima.

Rhine & Moselle Fairytales: 11-night cruise from Amsterdam to Basel; 2019 dates: August 24, aboard the AmaPrima


Medieval Treasures: 7-night cruise from Basel to Nuremberg; 2019 dates: August 15 (Wine Cruise), aboard the AmaDante.


“All In” Free Drinks & Wi-Fi on MSC Cruises

Go all in and get unlimited drinks plus free Wi-Fi on Caribbean cruises from Miami or Canada/New England cruises from New York with MSC.  It’s a value exceeding US$550.


Sail to the Eastern/Western Caribbean or to Canada/New England on one of MSC’s four ultra-modern ships—MSC Seaside, MSC Meraviglia, MSC Divina, and MSC Armonia—and get this amazing deal.

Cruises start from US$519 per person, government fees and taxes are additional.US$99 reduced deposit applies with this promotion which expires on March 31, 2019.


Traveling Down the Seine with Disney

This new 10-day, 9-night Seine river cruise vacation combines two days exploring Paris on land, followed by eight days of cruising through picturesque French destinations including Conflans, Vernon, and more. The popular Adventures by Disney river cruises offer unique excursions such as interactive culinary experiences, including a gourmet food tasting tour, regional wine and cheese sampling, and a hands-on macaroon making demonstration.

In addition to the guided tours of Paris icons, including Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, and the Louvre, there are active excursions available for the whole family, including biking, canoeing, and horseback riding. Other unique experiences include a visit to Monet’s House and Gardens in Giverny and castle tours and rich historical storytelling at a chateau. Adventures by Disney guests can also add on an extension package at Disneyland Paris Resort to complete their vacation.


Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

Veni, Vini, Amavi. We came, we saw, we loved. – Anonymous


Deal of the Week

China Epic & Yangtze River

China Epic & Yangtze River 15-day tour is now 2-for-1.  Limited time offer. 2-for-1 pricing, from US$3,299 for two people, including international airfare from Los Angeles. Single supplement US $899. 15 days/13 nights—Shanghai, Suzhou, Wuxi, Hangzhou, Yichang, Yangtze River, Changqing, Bejing.


Experience China’s breathtaking antiquities, climb the winding Great Wall, admire the world’s largest palace museum, cruise down Asia’s longest river, visit the amazing Suzhou Gardens and savor authentic local cuisine.

You will also discover the ancient city of Bejing and experience modern-day China in the vibrant city of Shanghai. This sensational deal allows you to discover the dramatic gorges, mountain villages, historical relics, and breathtaking scenery as you cruise along the mighty the Yangtze River.


2019 departures: March 17, 26; April 7, 14, 16, 21; May 5, 12, 14, 21.


Price includes:

  • Roundtrip international airfares from Los Angeles, other departure cities also available by request
  • All-inclusive package with 5-star hotels and cruise (based on double occupancy)
  • 28 meals featured with authentic Chinese cuisine
  • Peking Duck dinner and dumpling banquet included
  • Airport taxes and fuel surcharges
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • All transportation (including internal flights, cruise, and coach transportation)
  • All visits and admission fees including entertainment shows mentioned in the itinerary
  • English speaking guide


Price does not include:

  • Chinese Visa Application fees for multiple entries: US$290 per person
  • Prepaid tipping: US$190 per person for the entire trip
  • Travel insurance.
  • Personal expenditures


Optional tours:

  • Hong Kong 3 days/2 nights from US$599 per person – 4 days/3 nights from US$699 per person
  • Xi’an Terra Cotta Warriors 3 days/2 nights from US$590 per person
  • Guilin & Yangshuo 4 days/3 nights from US$850 per person


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 custom 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, carr  a Dolores Hidalgo.  View the latest travel specials on the website

Sources: Travel Agent Central, AMAWaterways, MSC Cruises, Adventures by Disney, Nexus Holidays

China Epic

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