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Portugal- The Algarve 3 Week Stay in Alvor

February 12- March 6, 2023

Experience a fabulous stay overlooking the beach in the beautiful Algarve region of Portugal, with 2 meals per day included!

The Pestana D. João II is a is a 4-star hotel overlooking sandy Alvor beach with calm, crystal clear waters. It is only 10 minutes on foot (or a 5 minute drive) from the town centre, and very close to the Alvor river. The hotel won TripAdvisor’s “travellers choice” award for 2022 and offers 2 outdoor saltwater swimming pools surrounded by lush and peaceful gardens, use of the gym, and a spa with an indoor swimming pool, Turkish bath and sauna where you can schedule a Magic Spa massage ($).  All rooms have free Wi-Fi and TVs and offer a balcony with either side or front views of the sea.

Your worry-free vacation includes return flights and airport transfers, accommodation at the highly rated Pestana D. João II, and two meals per day.  Join us to discover the best of the Algarve’s mild climate and cultural diversity.  Attractively priced from only $2639 + taxes of $800 based on double occupancy, this holiday is a fantastic alternative to many of the semi-inclusive holidays you’ll find in Florida or the Carribbean.

There is limited space on this vacation- book now to avoid disappointment!

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Depart from Canada

Departure from Westgate Mall to Montreal via private coach. You will arrive to Dorval, Montreal 3 hours prior to your flight time. You will fly with Air Transat from Montreal to Lisbon. Our office staff will be happy to give you flight/time details.

Day 2-21

Alvor

Upon arrival in Lisbon, you will be met by a local representative and transferred to your hotel in the Algarve via private motorcoach. Driving time is approximately 2.5 hours.

Your Travac Tours Director/Representative will meet you on arrival in the main reception at the Pestana Dom Joao II. Baggage is not included, so please bring your baggage into reception.

Your stay at the Pestana Dom Joao II includes:

Accommodation as selected.

Breakfast daily (coffee, tea and juices included).

Dinner daily (drinks not included).

With many of the country’s safest and loveliest beaches and a year-round balmy climate, it is not surprising that the Algarve is Portugal’s most popular tourist destination. The 200km coastline of the Algarve features all types of coves, cliffs, caves, and its rocky beaches contrasts beautifully with broad expanses of sand. Optional excursions will be available for purchase locally.

Day 3

Presentation on optional tour offerings

Attend a presentation about optional tour ($) offerings. Your Travac Tours Director will advise of location & time upon arrival in Alvor.

Day 21-23

Lisbon

You will be advised by your Travac Tours Director the time of departure today to Lisbon via private motorcoach. Your Travac Tours Director will get you onboard the coach and say goodbye.

On arrival into Lisbon, you will be met by a local representative for your check in. Your stay for the next 2 nights is at the HF Fenix Lisboa Hotel with breakfast daily. Optional tours ($) will be offered of Lisbon and area.

Day 23

Return to Canada

You will be transferred from your Lisbon hotel to the Lisbon airport (3.5 hours prior to departure time from Lisbon). Your flight today is with Air Transat from Lisbon to Dorval, Montreal. Once you arrive in Montreal you will be met by a Travac representative to transfer you back from Montreal to Ottawa. Our office staff will be happy to give you flight details.

Itinerary subject to change.

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Hotel Information


Pestana Dom João II

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
R. da Torralta, 8500-088
Alvor, Portugal

+351 282 400 700


HF Fénix Lisboa

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Praca Marques de Pombal 8
Lisbon, Portugal
1269-133
+351 21 371 6677



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Greece & The Splendour Of Its Legendary Islands

Pictured above: Santorini, Greece

A 5 star holiday with 5 star hotels

Greece and its islands have long inspired travelers from around the world. In fact, it has been part of a major trade route (and tourist destination) for some 5000 years since the earliest days of the Bronze Age. Located in south eastern Europe, this country of 11 million people lies at the meeting point of three continents; Europe, Asia and Africa. With its 6000 islands and islets scattered throughout the Aegean Sea, Greece makes a delightful holiday with wonderful opportunities to explore various cultures and changing landscapes.

This 16 day, 14 night fully escorted holiday includes round trip transportation, inter-island transportation by air or sea, 5 nights in Crete, 3 nights in Santorini, 3 nights in Mykonos, 3 nights in Athens, 14 breakfasts and 5 dinners.

Travac includes a sightseeing excursion in Crete, Santorini and Athens.

You will have plenty of time to enjoy the pleasures of the islands on your own. Optional tours will also be available.

April 22- May 7, 2023 (air from Ottawa)

May 7-22, 2023

May 14-29, 2023

 

 

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

April 22 departure:  Today you will depart from the Ottawa airport to Toronto. You will have an overnight flight from Toronto to Athens, Greece. Both flights are on Air Canada.

May 7 and 14 departures:  Depart Ottawa motorcoach from the Westgate to Montreal. You will have an overnight flight from Montreal to Athens.

Day 2

Upon your arrival in Greece, you will depart for your flight to Crete. You will then be taken to your hotel, via private motorcoach – Nema Design Hotel (formerly Elysium) or similar, which is your home for the next 5 nights. Your Travac Tours Director will assist you with check in at ALL hotels.

Day 2-7

Your stay in Crete includes Breakfast and Dinner daily.

Crete is the largest island in Greece and the fifth largest in the Mediterranean Sea. While in Crete you will have a chance to visit and admire the remnants of brilliant civilizations, enjoy its impressive mountain landscapes, fertile valleys, steep gorges and explore its glorious beaches. Crete is famous for a rich gastronomic culture. There are plenty of excellent restaurants near your hotel that offer the island’s superb local cuisine.

A full day private motorcoach tour of Crete is included. Optional tours are available through your Travac Tours Director locally – paid in Euros ($).

Day 7

This morning you will be transferred by private motorcoach to the high-speed ferry terminal. You will ferry from Crete to Santorini (this ferry is approximately 2 hours). Then private motorcoach transfer to your hotel.

Santorini may well be the most famous island in the world; it is certainly the most popular in Greece. People travel thousands of miles just to relish in one of its incredible sunsets. There are very few more idyllic islands. It offers beaches, spectacular scenery, great restaurants, an active volcano, and ancient towns of mythical importance. Your hotel in Santorini is the Volcano View resort or similar.

Day 7-10

While in Santorini your daily breakfast is included.

A half day private motorcoach tour with local guide of Santorini is included.

Optional tours are available through your Travac Tours Director locally – paid in Euros ($).

Day 10

Today you will say farewell to Santorini and travel by ferry to Mykonos (approximately 2 ½ hours). This island is Greece’s most famous cosmopolitan island. It is known as a whitewashed paradise dotted with windmills in the heart of the Cyclades Islands. According to mythology Mykonos was formed from the petrified bodies of giants killed by Hercules. The island itself is named after the grandson of Apollo “Mykonos.” Your hotel in Mykonos is The Petinos Beach Hotel or similar.

Day 10-13

While in Mykonos your daily Breakfast is included.

There is not an included tour in Mykonos. Optional tours are available through your Travac Tours Director locally – paid in Euros ($).

Day 13

Today you will travel to Athens by high-speed ferry (approximately 2 ½ hours) and then be transferred by private motorcoach to your hotel. Your visit in Athens includes a private motorcoach tour of this timeless city with a local guide. While in Athens, you will have the opportunity to experience many of the legendary attractions of this fascinating city including the Acropolis and the Parthenon. Much of Athens can be explored on foot. Your Travac Tours Director or the hotel concierge will be happy to give you directions to the attractions or museums located near the hotel. Your hotel in Athens is The Divani Palace Acropolis or similar.

Day 13-15

While in Athens your daily Breakfast is included.

A half day private motorcoach tour with private guide of Athens is included. Optional tours are available through your Travac Tours Director locally – paid in Euros ($).

Day 16

May 7 return:  After breakfast you will be transferred by private motorcoach to the airport for your return flights to Toronto, and onward to Ottawa.

May 22 and 29 return:  After breakfast you will be transferred by private motorcoach to the airport for your return flights to Montreal. Once in Montreal you will meet your Travac Tours Director and travel via private motorcoach to Westgate Mall.

Itinerary subject to change.

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Hotel Information


Crete - Nema Design Hotel (formerly Elysium)

Hotel website



Hotel Address
Analipsi, Hersonissos Crete
Crete, Greece

+30 28970 29532


Santorini – Volcano View

Hotel website



Hotel Address
Fira - Santorini 847 0
Santorini, Greece

+30 22860 24780


Mykonos: Petinos Beach Hotel (5 star) or similar

Hotel website



Hotel Address
Platy Gialos
Mykonos, Greece

+30 228 902 4310


Athens: Divani Palace Acropolis (5 star) or similar

Hotel website



Hotel Address
Parthenonos 19, Athina 117 42
Athens, Greece

+30 21 0928 0100



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Portugal- The Algarve 3 Week Stay

January 29 – February 20, 2023

February 5-27, 2023

March 12 – April 3, 2023

Travac has crafted a fine vacation to Portugal’s Algarve in the beautiful Praia de Rocha region.  Just a few steps from the beach, marina, restaurants, shops, and casino, the Jupiter Hotel is a perfect choice for a memorable stay.  This fabulous hotel features one of the few heated outdoor pools in the Algarve.  Your worry-free vacation includes return flights and airport transfers, accommodation at the highly rated Jupiter Hotel, and two meals per day.  Join us to discover the best of the Algarve’s mild climate and cultural diversity.  Attractively priced from only $2399 + taxes of $800 based on double occupancy, this holiday is a fantastic alternative to many of the semi-inclusive holidays you’ll find in Florida or the Carribbean.

Travac is also offering exceptional long-stay vacations between 5 and 12 weeks to the Algarve this winter- for more information on these packages, please click here.

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Depart from Canada

Departure from Westgate Mall to Montreal via Private Coach. You will arrive to Dorval, Montreal 3 hours prior to your flight time. You will fly with Air Transat from Montreal to Lisbon. Our office staff will be happy to give you flight/time details.

Day 2- 21

Praia da Rocha

Upon arrival in Lisbon, you will be met by a local representative and transferred to your hotel via private motorcoach. Driving time is approximately 3 hours.

Your local representative will meet you on arrival in the main reception. Baggage is not included, so please bring your baggage into reception.

Your stay at the Jupiter includes:

Accommodation as selected.

Breakfast daily with coffee/tea/juices and water.

Dinner daily with coffee/tea/water/soft drinks/local wine or beer.

With many of the country’s safest and loveliest beaches and a year-round balmy climate, it is not surprising that the Algarve is Portugal’s most popular tourist destination. The 200km coastline of the Algarve features all types of coves, cliffs, caves, and its rocky beaches contrasts beautifully with broad expanses of sand. Optional excursions will be available for purchase locally.

Day 3

Attend a presentation about optional tour ($) offerings. Your local representative will advise of location & time upon arrival in Albufeira.

Day 21-23

Lisbon

You will be advised by your local representative of the time of departure today to Lisbon via private motorcoach. Your local representative will get you onboard the coach and say goodbye.

Upon arrival into Lisbon, you will be met by a local representative for your check in. Your stay for the next 2 nights is at the Hotel Marques de Pombal with breakfast daily. Optional tours ($) will be offered of Lisbon and area.

Day 23

Return to Canada

You will be transferred from your Lisbon hotel to the Lisbon airport (3.5 hours prior to departure time from Lisbon). Your flight today is with Air Transat from Lisbon to Dorval, Montreal. Once you arrive in Montreal you will be met by a Travac representative to transfer you back from Montreal to Ottawa. Our office staff will be happy to give you flight details.

Itinerary subject to change.

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Hotel Information


Jupiter Hotel Algarve

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Avenida Tomás Cabreira 92
8500-802 Portimão, Portugal

+351 282 470 470



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Battlefields of Europe That Helped Define Canada

Join Travac as we visit some of the many sites that have been built to commemorate the contribution of our brave young men and woman who fought during the Great War and World War II. The courage and battles fought by these men and women during these wars made Canada the wonderful respected country it is today. You will have a chance to see some of the locations where the fieriest battles were fought.

We will travel to the liberated countries of the Netherlands, Belgium and France visiting some of the Commonwealth and Canadian cemeteries, memorials and museums built to show the thanks and appreciation to these men and women.

During the tour you will experience the enduring gratitude from the people of the region towards Canadians for the ultimate sacrifices made in two world wars.

Your experience in France, Belgium and Holland will be enhanced by the natural and architectural beauty of the towns and villages you will visit. While each of these towns played and important role in either the first or the second world wars, they have since flourished in peace. Their attraction is their magnificent past- a past that in some cases goes back over a thousand years. Indeed, these villages are an important part of the fabric that draws us to Europe.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.

 Lest we forget

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Depart Ottawa on your overnight flights to London Heathrow. You will be served a dinner and a continental breakfast on board your overnight flight(s). (D)

Day 2

Maidstone 1 night

Upon arrival in London, our local guide will join us for a scenic tour of London. If time permits, we will visit The Memorial to the Merchant Marine, commemorating the sacrifice of merchant sailors during both world wars. By 1943 Canada provided 48% of escort ships for the convoys bringing vital supplies to Britain during the Battle of the Atlantic.

 

Afterwards we will make our way to our hotel.

Day 3

Calais 1 night

On our way to France, we will visit the Battle of Britain Memorial and Visitors Centre at Capel le Ferne overlooking the English Channel between Folkestone and Dover.

 

This afternoon we cross the Straight of Dover for our overnight in Calais.

Day 4

Caen 2 nights

Dieppe

Canada’s experiences in war have been marked by great triumphs but also by harsh setbacks. The Dieppe Raid during the Second World War was one of the darkest chapters in Canada’s military history. It did, however, help lead to important lessons learned.

 

The Dieppe Raid saw more than 6,000 men come ashore at five different points along a 16 kilometer-long stretch of heavily defended coastline. The raiding force was made up of almost 5,000 Canadians, approximately 1,000 British commandos, and 50 American Army Rangers.

 

While many men were lost and the raid did not meet most of its objectives, many historians feel that the lessons learned played an important role in the success of later actions. For example, the Dieppe Raid and later beach assaults contributed to improvements in amphibious landing techniques. While the cost of gaining this knowledge was steep, it likely saved many lives on the beaches of Normandy when the Allies returned to the shores of continental Western Europe on D-Day, June 6, 1944.

 

The men who participated in the Dieppe Raid paid a great price. Of the 4,963 Canadians who went on the mission, approximately 2,200 returned to England and many were wounded. More than 3,350 Canadians became casualties, including approximately 1,950 POWs. 916 Canadians died as a result of Dieppe on the beaches, in the air or at sea supporting the landings. Some died as German captives or of their wounds after returning to England. A total of 210 British and Americans also lost their lives.

 

The Dieppe Raid also took a considerable toll on the ships and aircraft that supported the assault. The campaign saw the war’s single worst day for Allied aircraft losses, with 119 aircraft shot down as they protected the supporting ships.

 

The Canadians who participated in the Dieppe Raid were among the more than one million men and women from Canada who served in uniform during the Second World War. The efforts of all of these Canadians helped ensure that victory was achieved. The sacrifices and achievements of those who gave so much to restore peace and freedom to the world cannot be forgotten.

(Boxed Lunch)

Day 5

Today we will visit the Juno Beach Center. We will have a guided tour of the beach and bunkers (German Observation post and command post) and a self-guided tour of the museum. We will also visit one of the Normandy beaches.

Normandy

By the spring of 1944, Germany had occupied France and much of the European continent for almost four years. A narrow stretch of water, the English Channel, was all that separated the German forces from Great Britain.

 

Even with all these preparations, the Normandy campaign would be very difficult. The shores of Northwest Europe were littered with German land mines, barbed wire, heavy artillery batteries and machine-gun nests. There were also anti-tank walls, shelters constructed of thick concrete, anti-aircraft guns and many other types of defensive positions. For these reasons, the coastline from Denmark to the south of France was known as “Fortress Europe.”

 

Many Canadian soldiers in the Normandy campaign were young and new to battle, but their courage and skill meant they often helped lead the Allied advance against a determined enemy. Canadians soon captured three shoreline positions on D-Day and established themselves near the village of Creully, but this was to be only the beginning of the struggle to liberate France.

 

Against difficult odds, the Canadians advanced against the best troops the enemy had. Victory in the Normandy campaign, however, would come at a terrible cost. Three hundred and forty Canadians were killed on Juno Beach on D-Day alone and the Canadians would suffer the most casualties of any division in the British Army Group during the Battle of Normandy. More than 5,000 made the ultimate sacrifice, losing their lives, and lie buried in a place far from their homes and loved ones. Others returned home with injuries to body and mind that they carry to this day.

 

Victory in Normandy would be only the beginning of many months of hard fighting on the ground in Western Europe. Canadians would play an important role in the offensives that would finally defeat the Germans and end the war in this part of the world.

 

On return to Caen, we’ll stop to visit Abbabye D’Ardeene.

Day 6

Arras – 2 nights

Depart Caen for Arras. We will make a stop at Le Quesnel Canadian Memorial – at this battle the Canadians fought along with the British, French and Australians to capture 5,033 prisoners and 161 guns.

Day 7

This morning we will visit the Beaumont Hamel, where you will find the Newfoundland Regiment Memorial, a memorial site in France dedicated to the commemoration of Dominion of Newfoundland forces members who were killed during World War I. The 74-acre (300,000 m2) preserved battlefield park encompasses the grounds over which the Newfoundland Regiment made their unsuccessful attack on 1 July 1916 during the first day of the Battle of the Somme. The Battle of the Somme was the regiment’s first major engagement, and during an assault that lasted approximately 30 minutes the regiment was all but wiped out. Purchased in 1921 by the people of Newfoundland, the memorial site is the largest battalion memorial on the Western Front, and the largest area of the Somme battlefield that has been preserved. Along with preserved trench lines, there are a number of memorials and cemeteries contained within the site. Keep your eyes open for the danger tree, a skeleton of a tree that lay in No Man’s Land and had been utilized as a landmark.

 

Next we visit Lochnagar Crater. At 91m wide and 21m deep, this is one of the largest war-time craters ever created. You can walk around the rim on a duckboard trail. The mine dug by the 179th Tunneling Company Royal Engineers, under a German field fortification known as Schwabenhöhe, is the front line south of the village of La Boisselle in the Somme department of France. The mine was sprung at 7:28 a.m. on 1 July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

 

We will also visit Thiepval Memorial – the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme battlefields bears the names of 72,194 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces. These men died in the Somme battle sector before 20th March 1918 and have no known grave. The date of 20th March was the day before the German Army launched a large-scale offensive, code-named “Operation Michael”, against the British Army Front in the sector of the Somme. Over 90 percent of those commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial died in the 1916 Battles of the Somme between July and November 1916.

(Boxed Lunch)

Day 8

Ypres 3 nights

This morning you will be visiting Vimy Ridge, where Canada became a nation. This is a site all Canadians should have an opportunity to visit. A guided tour will be available.

 

We will stop to visit a memorial to the Airmen of the Great War, where the names of 46 Canadians are listed. We will also stop at the Dury Canadian Memorial, recognizing a battle in which seven Victoria Crosses were won by Canadians.

(Boxed Lunch)

Day 9

Today we will visit Passchendaele Canadian Battlefield Memorial that marks the site of Crest Farm where Canadians encountered some of the fiercest resistance they were to meet during the war, and the Memorial Museum Passchendaele which tells the story of the war in the Ypres Salient with special emphasis on the Battle of Passchendaele.

 

The Tyne Cot Cemetery will be visited today. Tyne Cot Cemetery is the resting place of 11,954 soldiers of the Commonwealth Forces. This is the largest number of burials contained in any Commonwealth cemetery of either the First or Second World War. It is the largest Commonwealth military cemetery in the world.

 

Every evening at 8:00 pm at the Menin Gate Memorial, a deeply moving ceremony takes place under the vast arch of the Menin Gate. The traffic stops and buglers from the local fire brigade play ‘The Last Post’. The Menin Gate is the most famous Commonwealth war memorial in Flanders and perhaps the world. Tens of thousands of soldiers passed through here on their way to the front, many of them never to return. Opened in 1927, the memorial bears the names of 54 896 soldiers who were reported missing in the Ypres Salient between the outbreak of war and 15 August 1917. The Menin Gate was designed in classical style by Sir Reginald Blomfield. This ceremony takes place every evening at 8 pm. Sometimes the ceremony is attended by just a few spectators, or on more formal occasions hundreds can be present. Irrespective of numbers, the Last Post remains a unique and moving experience.

(Boxed Lunch)

Day 10

Today we will visit Hill 62 Memorial, St Julien (the Brooding Soldier), Langemark (German Cemetery) and Essex Cemetery. It is in this cemetery where John McCrae (1872–1918) wrote his famous poem In Flanders Fields. A cenotaph for McCrae is located in the cemetery.

Day 11

Mons 1 night

Today we will depart our hotel, heading towards Dunkirk. “Dunkirk spirit,” an expression used to describe the tendency of the British public to pull together and overcome times of adversity, is still heard in the United Kingdom today.

 

Dunkirk, and the evacuation associated with the troops trapped on Dunkirk, was described as a miracle by Winston Churchill. As the Wehrmacht swept through Western Europe in the spring of 1940, using Blitzkrieg, both the French and British armies could not stop the onslaught. For the people in Western Europe, World War Two was really about to begin. The “Phoney War” was now over.

 

The advancing German Army trapped the British and French armies on the beaches around Dunkirk. 330,000 men were trapped here and they were a sitting target for the Germans.

 

The beach at Dunkirk was on a shallow slope so no large boat could get near to the actual beaches where the men were. Therefore, smaller boats were needed to take on board men who would then be transferred to a larger boat based further off shore. The little ships of Dunkirk were 700 private boats that sailed from Ramsgate in England to Dunkirk in France between 26 May and 4 June 1940 as part of Operation Dynamo, the rescue of more than 338,000 British and French soldiers, who were trapped on the beaches at Dunkirk during the Second World War. It is thought that the smallest boat to make the journey across the Channel was the Tamzine – an 18 foot open topped fishing boat.

 

We will continue to Mons where we will visit the Price Memorial.

Day 12

Nijmegen 2 nights

Depart Mons for Nijmegen.

This afternoon, stop at the Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery. Nijmegen holds an annual walk in which both military and civilians participate- this event is over 4 days and the participants walk 30km, 40km or 50km in a day ending at the Groesbeek Cemetery.

Day 13

Today we will head toward Hoogeveen, where we will visit Kamp Westerbork.

 

**Kamp Westerbork was the site of a large transit and work camp in the Dutch province of Drente. Over 100,000 Jews, Gypsies and resistance members were taken to Westerbork. The camp consisted of an orphanage, school, industrial barracks, punishment barracks, housing barracks, a larger square for roll-call and a railway. While interned at Westerbork in 1942, Bob Cahen described camp life in a letter:

“More and more new people have arrived in the camp. The barracks have become crowded, overcrowded. The smithy is working flat out producing beds, one after the other. Straw mattresses or other mattresses haven’t been available for a long time now. The people just have to lie down without one, on the iron. People were lying or sitting outside. At night, they would sleep in or under barrows or under the open sky. There was not enough food.”

 

Anne Frank was among the thousands held at Westerbork. Anne died with her sister in Bergen-Belsen in April 1945, just weeks before the end of the war. The last train left Westerbork September 13, 1944 carrying 77 young children who had been taken away from their hiding places by the Nazis. Westerbork was liberated April 12, 1945 and 876 prisoners were set free when the Canadian Army came upon the camp. After the liberation, the camp remained in service and various

activities took place there, but in 1971 the last barracks were torn down. Kamp Westerbork is now a commemoration centre. (For more info visit www.veterans.gc.ca)

 

After our visit we will make our way back to Nijmegen, with stops in Apledoorn to see a Man with 2 hats statue – the twin to this statue can be found at Dow’s Lake in Ottawa Commissionaire Park and Arnhem the location that you may remember from a bridge too far.

Day 14

Transfer to Amsterdam for our flights back to Ottawa.

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Hotel Information


Mercure Maidstone Great Danes

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Hollingbourne
Maidstone , UK
ME17 1RE
+44 1622 528565


Nijmegen- Mercure Hotel Nijmegen Centre

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Stationsplein 29
Nijmegen, Netherlands
6512 AB
+31 24 323 8888


Mons- Hotel Lido

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Rue des Arbalestriers 112
Mons, Belgium
7000
+32 65 32 78 00


Ypres- Novotel Ieper Centrum

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Sint-Jacobsstraat 15
Ieper, Belgium
8900
+32 57 42 96 00


Caen- Ibis Styles Caen Centre Gare

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
52 Quai Amiral Hamelin, 14000
Caen, France

+33 2 31 34 20 00


Holiday Inn Calais

Hotel website



Hotel Address
6 Boulevard Des Alliés
Calais, France
62100
33-3-21346969



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Portugal and Spain

Portugal’s Algarve province, with its magnetic Moorish appeal has become a Mecca for snowbirds trying to escape the harsh reality of winter. It’s also one of Europe’s most picturesque and friendly holiday destinations. The Algarve is what most of us envision the Mediterranean to be. The whitewashed villages cascade into the sea. Cobblestoned streets are lined with outdoor cafes, bistros, wine bars, and markets full of fresh fruits and vegetables. The weather is wonderfully spring like and invigorating.

The Costa del Sol region of southern Spain is remarkable for its diverse landscapes, fabulous beaches and coastal sites as well as a wealth of small villages that dot the shore line. This Mediterranean coastline is one of Europe’s most popular holiday destinations, hosting millions of tourists on an annual basis. Villages have grown into robust towns with great restaurants, shopping and nightlife. The area’s history dates back thousands of years and it has developed a unique and warm culture that defines the region.

Whether this is your first visit to the Costa del Sol or you have enjoyed its pleasures in the past there is always something new to discover.

Early booking is your best guarantee of enjoying this great holiday!

Dates and pricing for 2023:

 

January 29-February 24, 2023: Brisa Sol in Portugal (12 nights) and Sunset Beach in Spain (13 nights)

Based on a Studio Pool view in Portugal and a One Bedroom Mountain view in Spain:

Double occupancy: $3299.00 CAD per person ($2499.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Single occupancy: $4479.00 CAD ($3679.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Portugal room upgrade: One Bedroom Pool View: Add $160 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $320

Spain room upgrades:

One Bedroom Sea/Pool View: Add $95 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $190

One Bedroom Prime Sea View: Add $173 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $346

Deluxe Junior Suite Sea View: Add $310 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $620

February 19-March 17, 2023: Luna da Oura in Portugal (11 nights) and Sunset Beach in Spain (14 nights)

Based on a Studio in Portugal and a One Bedroom Mountain view in Spain:

Double occupancy: $3449.00 CAD per person ($2649.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Single occupancy: $4664.00 CAD ($3864.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Portugal room upgrade: One Bedroom: Add $80 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $160

Spain room upgrades:

One Bedroom Sea/Pool View: Add $102 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $204

One Bedroom Prime Sea View: Add $186 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $372

Deluxe Junior Suite Sea View: Add $335 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $670

March 5-24, 2023: Luna da Oura in Portugal (8 nights) and Sunset Beach in Spain (10 nights)

Based on a Studio in Portugal and a One Bedroom Mountain view in Spain:

Double occupancy: $3279.00 CAD per person ($2479.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Single occupancy: $4164.00 CAD ($3364.00 plus taxes of $800.00).

Portugal room upgrade: One Bedroom: Add $57 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $114

Spain room upgrades:

One Bedroom Sea/Pool View: Add $73 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $146

One Bedroom Prime Sea View: Add $133 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $266

Deluxe Junior Suite Sea View: Add $239 per person based on double occupancy | Single add $478

Hotel Information


Luna da Oura

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Rua Dunfermline, Areias de São João
8200-278 Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal

(+351) 289 590 170


Sunset Beach Club

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Av. del Sol, s/n, 29630 Benalmádena
Malaga, Spain

+34 952 57 94 00


Brisasol

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
R. do Município 27
Albufeira, Algarve, Portugal
8200-161
+351 289 580 420



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Southern Caribbean Cruise– No Flying

Norwegian is a Contemporary Cruise Line known for its fun, laid-back ambiance and inventive “freestyle cruising” concept, which features no enforced dress codes, no fixed dining times and a plethora of onboard entertainment and family-friendly activities. Your ship, Norwegian Getaway, combines the most magnificent amenities Norwegian has to offer with unforgettable destinations. Stroll The Waterfront, an innovative, industry-first open-air promenade designed to connect guests with the ocean like no other cruise line. Indulge in 20 dining options, experience the thrill of five water slides, and three levels of action-packed activities in the sports complex. The excitement and entertainment continue with Broadway style musical presentations. Your cruise package on Norwegian Getaway will include your choice of the following amenities (2 for Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins receive all four): Premium Beverage package (gratuities not included); Specialty Dining package (gratuities not included); Internet package with 250 minutes; or $50 USD Shore Excursion credit.

Coming soon- stay tuned for dates and pricing!

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

This morning you will depart Ottawa for your trip to New York. You will be overnighting in Manhattan before starting your cruise. You must pack an overnight bag for tonight as your large, checked bag will stay on the coach.

Day 2

This morning the magic begins with a guided tour of New York City. Your local tour guide, a knowledgeable New Yorker, will take you through the city giving you a chance to see some of the fabulous sites that have made this city a cosmopolitan gem. After the tour you’ll be taken to the port for embarkation. Your ship, the Norwegian Getaway, sails today at 3:00pm. (D)

Day 3

Leisurely spent at sea

There are plenty of activities aboard the Norwegian Getaway to entertain everyone or simply relax and enjoy your surroundings. (B, L, D)

Day 4

Leisurely spent at sea

(B, L, D)

Day 5

San Juan, Puerto Rico (4 pm – 10:30 pm)

Founded in 1521, San Juan’s picturesque cobblestone streets, plazas and chapels reflect its Spanish heritage. But the second oldest city in the Americas also boasts fine beaches, lush rainforests, verdant mountainsides, imposing forts, and a lovely tropical climate. (B, L, D)

Day 6

Basseterre, St. Kitts-Nevis (12 pm – 7 pm)

Tender Port

Although founded by the French in 1627, St. Kitts is a very British paradise where cricket and tea are the norm. The dramatic mixed island landscape is rimmed in gold-sand beaches and dotted with well-preserved plantations left over from when the island was covered with sugar cane. (B, L, D)

Day 7

Castries, St. Lucia (8 am – 5 pm)

Tender Port

A mecca for outdoor enthusiasts with thriving coral reefs and rain forest preserves. Explore the world’s only drive-in volcanic crater at Sulfur Springs. Visit the Diamond Botanical Gardens and Falls and the Morne Coubaril Estate. (B, L, D)

Day 8

Bridgetown, Barbados (7am – 4pm)

The most British of all the Caribbean islands, games of cricket are as common here as the typical island water sports. Visit the third-oldest Parliament in the entire Commonwealth. Stroll the inviting beaches of Carlisle Bay, tour a rum factory, or visit the historical Garrison area. Bridgetown is the only city outside continental North America that George Washington visited. The George Washington House, the actual house where he stayed, is now part of the Garrison Historic Area.

(B, L, D)

Day 9

St. John’s, Antigua (9 am – 6pm)

Bask in the grand sight of the city’s skyline, dominated by the white baroque towers of St. John’s Cathedral. Sample local cuisines, visit the Botanical Garden, witness the magnificent Antigua Lighthouse, the historical Fort James and much more as you discover this grand city. (B, L, D)

Day 10

St. Thomas, US Virgin Island (7 am – 3 pm)

The town of Charlotte Amalie has one of the most breathtaking harbours in the world. Once home to pirates of long ago, today visitors find treasures of a different kind, for now beautiful beaches and bountiful duty-free shopping are truly its claim to fame. (B, L, D)

Day 11

Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic (9 am – 4 pm)

Puerto Plata (or officially known as San Felipe de Puerto Plata) is the ninth largest city in the Dominican Republic and the capital of the province of Puerto Plata. For spectacular city views, take a ride up the Pico Isabel de Torres mountain which stands over 2,600 feet high. History buff? Visit Fortaleza San Felipe, which was built in the 16th century and served as a prison under the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo. Or head to the Amber Museum, a museum filled with a unique collection of valuable Dominican amber which is semiprecious tree sap that has hardened for millions of years capturing many fossils of plant and insect life. (B, L, D)

Day 12

Leisurely spent at sea.

(B, L, D)

Day 13

Leisurely spent at sea.

(B, L, D)

Day 14

New York to Ottawa – This morning the Getaway will arrive back in New York. After breakfast we will meet as a group and disembark the ship, where we will be met by our motor coach and begin our journey back to Ottawa, with a stop enroute for lunch. You can expect to arrive in Ottawa about 8:00 in the evening. (B)

Cruise itinerary is subject to change by cruise line.

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Croatia

Pictured above:  City of Dubrovnik

May 9-24, 2023

Succulent seafood, miles and miles of brilliant coastline, awe inspiring scenery everywhere you go, it’s all a taste of this unique land called Croatia. With roots that go back to the Greek and Roman eras you will find telltale examples of its magnificent past everywhere. The magnetism of modern Croatia, though, is found on the Adriatic coast with its beautiful beaches, secluded bays, lakes, incredible mountain peaks, fantastic cuisine and prized wines and spirits.

Travac Tours has crafted the perfect holiday for you in Croatia. Your experience will take you through the capital Zagreb and the plains district where you can visit its castles or simply enjoy freshly picked fruit from a local farm. While in Zagreb you’ll stay at the legendary Hotel Esplanade, an Orient Express hotel, visited by actors, dignitaries, kings and monarchs including Queen Elizabeth.

We’ll then take you to the Croatian Riviera where towns look like movie sets and the mountains cascade into the sea. This, the Monte Carlo of Croatia, is compared to the Amalfi coast in Italy yet you may find it more exhilarating.

A highlight of your vacation will come with a visit to the Plitvice Lakes National Park. A UNESCO world heritage site the park’s undeniable natural wonder is created by the beauty found in a string of lakes and waterfalls. Indeed, the lakes are one of the most outstanding natural wonders in all of Europe

You will then travel to the small village of Biograd na Moru to enjoy the matchless charm of this seaside resort.

Continuing south, you’ll stay in Split, an eternally young city where many inhabitants have built their homes inside the 1700-year-old walls of the Diocletian’s Palace, another UNESCO world heritage site. Here you will be able to shop and enjoy the towns famous marketplace. This seaside town truly brings you back to the Mediterranean as it once was.

Your last stop is Dubrovnik. A fortified sea town which holds thousands of years of both history and legend. This former city state was a republic of nobles. Its castles and villas are often used as backdrops for the TV series “Game of Thrones.” Dubrovnik is indeed amazing!

While on vacation you will be housed in some of the finest hotels in Croatia, each with a distinctive character. Breakfast is included daily. We have also included 8 dinners at the resort hotels. There is a full slate of sightseeing. Optional sightseeing opportunities are available for the adventurous and energetic.

Undeniably, Croatia is the up and coming destination for the perfect holiday. Join us!

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Ottawa to Zagreb

Depart Ottawa by motorcoach to Montreal for your overnight flights to Zagreb.

Day 2

Zagreb

Zagreb is the capital of Croatia. Archeological discoveries dating back to around 35,000 BC, during the Stone Age, have been discovered in the area. While Celts moved in from the North and the Romans from the West. Zagreb, as we know it today, dates back to the middle ages and there are plenty of sights that reflect its great past. After checking into your hotel, the balance of your day will be free. Your hotel, the Esplanade Zagreb, has a fascinating history dating back to 1925 when it was owned by “The Orient Express” Rail Company. Over the years this 5-star hotel has hosted most of the royal families in Europe as well as actors and diplomats. To this day it is considered to be one of the finest hotels in central Europe. Numerous museums and the botanical gardens are a short walk from your hotel.

Day 3

Zagreb

You will begin your day with a tour of Zagreb. A good part of the tour will be on foot as we meander through the old town. Zagreb itself is a very green city and there is plenty of opportunity to enjoy its parks and green spaces. Your afternoon is free to explore. (B)

Day 4

Zagreb

Your day is free to explore Zagreb. (B)

Day 5

Zagreb to Opatija

This morning we head to the Croatian Riviera and the delightful town of Opatija. Variously known as the “Old Dame”, the “Pearl of the Adriatic” or the “Queen of Tourism” Opatija is a remarkable seaside resort dating back to 1844. The feel of the Victorian era is everywhere amongst the spectacular hotels with their grand facades. The cascading hills remind you of Italy’s Amalfi Coast. It is truly a destination of elegance and style. Upon your arrival your Travac Tours Director will take you on a short stroll down the city’s main street and point out some of the town’s highlights. (B, D)

If you are into walking you will certainly enjoy the “Lungomare Promenade” which follows the coastline for 12 kilometers.

Day 6

Opatija

After breakfast we begin our tour with a visit to the Roman Amphitheatre in Pula. While this Amphitheatre is one of many left around Europe by Roman engineers it is certainly one of the best preserved anywhere. We’ll also spend some time in the old town before heading to Rovinj. Rovinj rises dramatically from the Adriatic. Its streets are delightfully twisty and there is indeed something particularly romantic about this old town. (B, D)

Day 7

Opatija

On our last day in this region you are free to relax and enjoy Opatija. (B, D)

Day 8

Opatija to Biograd na Moru

Our journey today will take us to Plitvicka Jezera National Park. This UNESCO world heritage site will be one of the highlights of your holiday. The national park is world famous for its lakes arranged in cascades. The sixteen lakes are separated into twelve upper and four lower clusters formed by runoff from the mountains. The lakes are renowned for their distinctive colours ranging from azure to green and grey to blue. The colours change constantly depending on the quantity of minerals or organisms in the water and the angle of sunlight. For the next two nights you will be staying in the delightful town Biograd na Moru. Situated on the northern Dalmatian coast, this small town has an enchanting appeal. You will be free this evening to enjoy a stroll along the waterfront and choose your dining experience. (B, D)

Day 9

Biograd na Moru

Biograd was once the home of Croatian kings. Today it is populated by leisure craft and tourists from all over the world. Your free day can be enjoyed by simply relaxing at your hotel or taking a stroll through this interesting village. (B, D)

Day 10

Biograd na Moru – Split

After breakfast, our journey continues to the heart of the Dalmatian coast – Split.

Split is the second largest city in Croatia with a population of over 200,000. Modern Split effectively came into being with the founding of the Diocletian’s Palace, around 295 AD. Today the Palace is part of the old city and is surrounded by an open-air market which is always bustling with activity.

After our arrival in Split, we will make our way to the old city for a chance to see the Diocletian’s Palace which simply oozes atmosphere. There are numerous options for dinner in the old city that will offer everything from Dalmatian delicacies to your standard bill of fare. (B)

Day 11

Split

Today you will have a leisurely opportunity to explore and discover the spirit of Split. (B)

Day 12

Split to Dubrovnik

After breakfast we will continue south to the wonderful walled city of Dubrovnik. This city is squeezed between the sea and the mountains and is encircled by stone walls. It is, in a sense, a perfect work of beauty with an enthralling history. Nothing will disappoint you in this magnificent city. (B, D)

Day 13

Dubrovnik

Your morning tour of Dubrovnik will start with a panoramic drive through the Dubrovnik surroundings. Dubrovnik rose to have one of the strongest merchant navies in the 16th century. The town itself became a powerful city state known as the Dubrovnik republic which maintained its independence for 450 years. Your tour will continue with a guided walking tour of the old city. (B, D)

Day 14

Dubrovnik

Your last full day in Dubrovnik is free. Optional tour to Korcula. The town of Korcula is a magical place, girdled by the remains of massive medieval walls, which surround a perfect herringbone pattern of narrow stone streets descending from the main axis. It sits on a small peninsula toward the eastern end of the island. It is one of the most beautiful towns on the Adriatic and far less crowded than Dubrovnik or Hvar town. Our tour will include a Ferry ride then a walking tour of the Old Town including stops at the Cathedral of Saint Mark, the Bishop’s Treasury and, of course, the house of Marco Polo. On our journey back to Dubrovnik, we will stop for a tour of a local oyster farm. Our day will be fully guided by our Dubrovnik guide, Marko. (B, D)

Day 15

Dubrovnik to Zagreb

After breakfast we will make our return journey from Dubrovnik to Zagreb for our overnight stay. Your evening is free. (B)

Day 16

Zagreb to Ottawa

Your Travac Tours Director will advise you of your departure time for your return flights to Ottawa. (B)

Itinerary subject to change.

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Hotel Information


Zagreb – Esplanade Zagreb Hotel (5 star) or simila

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Mihanoviceva 1
Zagreb, Croatia
10000
+385 1 4566 666


Opatija- Remisens Premium Heritage Hotel Imperial (5 star) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Ulica Maršala Tita 124/3
Opatija, Croatia
51410
+385 51 710 444


Biograd na Moru- Kornati OR Ilirija (4 star) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Ul. Tina Ujevića 7
Biograd na Moru, Croatia
23210
+385 23 383 556


Split- Amphora Hotel (4 star) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Ulica Domovinskog rata 49, 21000
Split, Croatia

+385 21 308 500


Dubrovnik- Valamar Lacroma/ Valamar Argosy Dubrovnik (4+ star) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Ul. Iva Dulčića 34
Dubrovnik, Croatia
20000
+385 52 465 100


Canopy by Hilton or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Ulica kneza Branimira 29
Zagreb, Croatia
10000
+385 1 4559 505



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Berlin, Prague, Vienna and Budapest

May 8-21, 2023

Travac’s passage to Berlin, Prague, Vienna and Budapest is a journey into the very cultural centre of Europe. It is an adventure into a land carved by the music of Kings and Courtesans inspired by the music of Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert and Strauss. It is an odyssey along the romantic Danube River from Vienna with its Opera Houses and fine arts museums to the bridges and bastions of Budapest.

Your pilgrimage will be filled with the charm and vibrancy of the Danube valley. It is here that you will experience impressive orchards tumbling from hills along its banks to postcard villages that dot the way throughout your journey. Each city you visit will offer you a different cultural insight and experience that will be both awe inspiring and revealing. Join us as we travel into the heart of Europe and follow a trail through the Imperial Cities.

For booking information contact Travac Tours in the Westgate Mall, 1309 Carling Avenue at (613) 728-1934.

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Depart Ottawa by motorcoach for your overnight flights to Berlin from Montreal.

Day 2 (Berlin- 3 nights)

Upon your arrival in Berlin you will be transferred to the hotel with a few stops along the way. After checking into our hotel, the balance of your day will be free. (B, D)

Day 3

This morning, you will be met by our local guide and taken on a city tour. The tour will take you into both the east and west sections of the city. Included are the Brandenburg Gate, Unter den Linden Boulevard, the German State Opera House, the Tiergarten as well as the shopping and entertainment district.

Your afternoon will be free to explore some of the great sights that the city has to offer. Berlin is famous for its “Island Museums.” Your guide will explain how to easily get to and from the museum complex. You may also want to visit the bustling “KU damm”. This shopping district was once the “shop window of the west”. Today it remains a vibrant shopping and dining experience. (B)

Day 4

Today you will have another leisurely chance to explore and discover the spirit of Berlin. Join your host on an early morning walk. This captivating city has plenty of opportunity for a new adventure. (B)

Day 5 (Prague- 3 nights)

From Berlin we will travel through Germany and into the Czech Republic Our destination is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe- Prague. After checking into our hotel, the balance of your day will be free. (B)

Day 6

This morning you will join a local guide for a complete city tour. The tour will start with a visit to the 1000 year old Prague Castle. The castle offers an amazing view of the old city. Your tour will also take you to the old town square, a hub of activity in the city since medieval times. Your afternoon is at leisure. Prague is somewhat famous for its music. An evening concert is a great way to end your day. (B)

Day 7

Today is a free day. As an option ($) you may wish to visit the Jewish museum. More than 200,000 items depicting Jewish life and religion are housed throughout several monuments, including the Jewish Town Hall and the Old Jewish Cemetery. It is also easy to lose yourself sightseeing in the cobblestone streets that are everywhere in the old town. Another option is to visit Prague’s version of the Eiffel tower. No matter what you choose to do with your free time the majesty of the city is always there. Your tour director will be happy to help you with suggestions for the balance of your day. (B)

Day 8 (Vienna- 3 nights)

Leaving Prague, we will make a stop in the charming town of Cesky Krumlov, a UNESCO world heritage site, before we reach Vienna. This medieval town is nestled on the Vltava River. While in Cesky Krumlov you will have a chance to wander through its traffic free cobblestone streets, shop and enjoy a light lunch before heading on to Vienna. Your afternoon and evening will be at your leisure in Vienna. (B)

Day 9

Your sightseeing of Vienna will begin with a guided tour of this great metropolitan centre led by a professional local guide. You will have a chance to see Hofburg Palace, the official residence of the President of Austria and a former home of the Hapsburg Dynasty. You will also see the famous Opera House, St Stephen’s Cathedral and Schonbrunn Palace. Your afternoon will again be at your leisure. (B)

Day 10

Your last day in Vienna will be on your own. Your Travac Tours Director will be happy to offer some suggestions for sightseeing, dining or shopping. (B)

Day 11 (Budapest- 3 nights)

Leaving Vienna we will travel along the Danube Bend, a narrow twisting valley in the pretty Carpathian Basin. Along the way we will make a stop in Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia, before arriving in Budapest. This evening you will be free to enjoy magical Budapest. (B)

Day 12

Your city tour of Budapest will consist of both a walking tour of old Buda taking in a good part of the cities rich heritage and a drive to Pest to visit Heroes’ Square featuring the Millennium Memorial. On your free time you may wish to visit one of the city’s Thermal Pools. (B)

Day 13

A free day in Budapest is invigorating. You will have time to shop, explore and enjoy the boundless heritage that has made the city so awe inspiring. This evening, enjoy your farewell dinner. (B, D).

Day 14

Your guide will advise you of your departure time for your return flights to Ottawa. (B)

To avoid disappointment please book early. Our last similar trip sold out in a matter of weeks.

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Hotel Information


Berlin- H10 Berlin Ku’Damm Hotel

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Joachimsthalerstraße 31-32
Berlin, Germany
D-10719-Kurfürstendamm
+49 (0) 30 322 922 300


Prague- Botanique Hotel

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Sokolovská 11, 186 00 Karlín
Prague, Czech Republic

+420 226 222 600


Vienna- Austria Classic Wien Hotel

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Praterstraße 72
Vienna, Austria
1020 Wien
+43 1 211 30-0


Budapest- Danubius Hotel Astoria

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
19-21. Kossuth Lajos u.
Budapest, Hungary
1053
+36-1-889-6000



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Ireland: Shamrock Adventure- The North and South of Ireland

May 13-25, 2023

It is often said that each day in Ireland is like a festival. Ireland is, after all, a country bustling with activity. Activity that ranges from cultural to traditional and from music to theatre and dance. Ireland is also a country of ancient landscapes that are ever changing. In fact, it is a country that boasts “40 shades of green”.

Join us on a delightful journey to the Emerald Isle. Your visit will take you to some of Ireland’s most treasured landmarks: You will visit Dublin; Blarney Castle, famous for its Blarney Stone; the spectacular Cliffs of Moher and Bunratty Castle. You will even visit Galway Bay!

You will also journey into Northern Ireland with visits to Belfast, famous for its Titanic museum, enjoy a drive along Northern Ireland’s famous coastal route and Giant Causeway. Your holiday will also take you to Derry, Londonderry and Donegal.

During your vacation, you will be accommodated in 3 or 4 star hotels. Irish breakfast daily and 3 dinners are included. Previous tours to Ireland sold out very quickly. Booking early therefore is your only guarantee of space on this adventure!

 

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Ottawa to Ireland

This afternoon you will depart on your overnight flights from Ottawa to Dublin.

Day 2

Dublin Airport to Belfast

Ceád Mile Fáilte – “One Hundred Thousand Welcomes” to Ireland!

Upon your arrival in Dublin you will be met by your local driver/guide and begin your journey to Belfast, Northern Ireland’s capital. Your first stop will be Titanic Belfast. This museum is the world’s largest RMS Titanic visitor attraction, comprising nine interpretive and interactive galleries focused on the short history of the famous ship. Its exhibits fill six floors and includes interactive discovery zones, full-scale reconstructions with special effects and real-life accounts from survivors of the tragic wreck. Highlights include the Ocean Exploration Centre with live links to modern underwater explorations and the luxurious Titanic Banqueting Hall. (D)

Overnight in Belfast

Day 3

Costal Route & Giant’s Causeway

This morning we will follow Northern Ireland’s famous coastal route and Giant’s Causeway. Considered to be one of the top scenic drives in Great Britain, this 212-kilometer route winds along the craggy coast of Northern Ireland. Stretching from Belfast all the way to Derry, the Causeway Coastal Route leads to castles, cliff walks, beaches, waterfalls, Game of Thrones filming locations and other scenic locales. (B)

Overnight in Belfast

Day 4

Londonderry & Donegal

After breakfast we will begin our journey to Sligo. Our first stop en route will be in Londonderry. This town is the only completely walled city left in Ireland. It has also played a big role in Northern Ireland’s troubled past.

Our next stop will be in Donegal. Donegal was voted the coolest place on the planet by National Geographic Traveler in 2017. This is because of its rugged interior, remote mountain passes and shimmering lakes. (B)

Overnight in Sligo

Day 5

Sligo to Galway

Today we will make our way to Galway. While steeped in history, Galway has a unique energy that makes it one of Ireland’s most visited cities. Galway has a thriving and cosmopolitan city centre. It is always a joy to explore with its wonderful cobbled streets, colourful shop facades and its unusual array of coffee shops. Your tour of Galway will encompass all of its major historical sites. (B, D)

Overnight in Galway

Day 6

Connemara Tour

Today you can explore some of the beautiful countryside of Connemara, with its rolling hills, flowing rivers and coastal landscapes. Connemara is a wild and beautiful region of mountains, lakes, tumbling streams, undulating bog, unspoiled beaches and panoramic views. It is a Gaelic- speaking region and has attracted many artisans, who can be visited at work in their studios. The centre of Connemara is composed of mountain peaks, the Twelve Bens or Pins, which culminate in Benbaun. The sharp grey peaks of quartzite rock which is resistant to weathering are too steep and hard to be clothed in blanket bog. The region is now largely uninhabited, although in the past the more fertile lowlands were cultivated and the uplands were used as pasture for cattle and sheep.

Stop and visit Kylemore Abbey & Gardens. Kylemore Abbey is the only home of the Benedictine nuns in Ireland. The Abbey was acquired by the nuns in 1920. Set in the heart of Connemara, this unique Abbey offers the warmth and hospitality of its peaceful environs. Its enchanting history is interpreted in detail in rooms at the Abbey. It was originally built by Mitchell Henry, M.P. for County Galway (a native of Manchester city) as a gift for his wife. The Gothic Church, set in the grounds of the Abbey, is the jewel in the crown of Kylemore. It has been lovingly restored and any visit would not be complete without seeing it. Explore the magical 6 acre Victorian walled garden, where Victorian varieties of flowers and vegetables are grown. Vegetables and herbs from the garden are used in the café where they offer traditional home cooked food made to the recipes of the Benedictine nuns. (B)

Overnight in Galway

Day 7

The Burren, Cliffs of Moher, Bunratty

Travel through the Burren – The Burren takes its name from the Irish word ‘bhoireann’ meaning, ‘a stony place’ or ‘a rocky place’, which is a good description for this 350 sq. kilometres limestone plateau in North Clare. The rough, intriguing and attractive landscape was formed 320 million years ago under a tropical sea. Later it was shaped by ice, hard weather and, of course, man and his beasts. The many wedge tombs and megalithic tombs prove that people have been living in the Burren for more than 5000 years.

Then travel to the Cliffs of Moher, one of Ireland’s most spectacular sights. Standing 600ft above the ground at their highest point and 5 miles long, the Cliffs boast one of the most amazing views in Ireland. On a clear day, the Aran Islands are visible in Galway Bay as well as the valleys and hills of Connemara.

In the afternoon, visit Bunratty Castle and Folk Park. Bunratty Castle is one of Europe’s finest. Pride of more than 100 castles built by the McNamara chieftains in 15th century Clare, it is faithfully restored and refurnished. Built in 1425, it is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland and contains furnishings, tapestries and works of art from the period. In the shadow of the castle is Bunratty Folk Park set on 26 acres, illustrating 19th century Irish life from grand manor houses to peasant dwelling and from farm activities to cobble-stone village streets. (B, D)

Overnight in Tralee

Day 8

Scenic Tour Around the Dingle Peninsula

Our first stop will be in Dingle. Dingle is a small port town on southwest Ireland’s Dingle Peninsula, known for its rugged scenery, trails and sandy beaches. It is considered to be one of the most picturesque parts of Ireland.

In the afternoon, we’ll return to Tralee and the rest of the day will be at your leisure. (B)

Overnight in Tralee

Day 9

Blarney & Cork City

This morning we depart for Blarney and the Blarney Stone, which has the traditional power on conferring eloquence on all who kiss it! The word ‘Blarney’ means pleasant talk, intended to deceive without offending. The battlements crowning the castle keep are typically Irish in form. Having climbed more than 100 steps, the famous Stone is set in the wall below the parapet, and to kiss it, one has to lean backwards from the parapet walk of the battlements. You can also visit the Blarney Woolen mills for some fine quality Irish produce.

After lunch, you will enjoy a panoramic tour of Cork and learn the history of Ireland’s third city known as the Rebel City. The city’s origins lie early in the seventh century when St. Finbarr, founder and patron saint, founded a small monastic community close to where Gilabbey Street now stands, and it grew into an extensive and wealthy establishment. It attracted the attention of the Viking sea-pirates who raided and burned the infant city, but returned in later years to settle and trade. The Anglo-Norman invasion in 1172 resulted in both the Danish lords and local MacCarthy chiefs having to submit to Henry II, but Cork has always had a reputation for independence and stubborn resistance – it came to be known as “Rebel Cork”. (B)

Overnight in Cork

Day 10

Midleton & Waterford

This morning, visit the Jameson Experience at the Old Midleton Distillery, Co Cork. The original buildings at the Middleton Distillery date back as far as the 1800s, and were used to mature Cork Distillery Whiskey (now known as Paddy Whiskey). Visitors come face to face with original kilns and pot stills from that time and explore warehouses that have matured whiskey for more than 2 centuries. Enjoy a signature drink of Jameson at the end of the tour.

Afterwards, you will travel to Waterford with an included city tour. Waterford is one of Ireland’s oldest and most historic cities. The walled city withstood siege on several occasions in the past but fell to the Normans in 1170 AD. It prospered under the Normans and emerged as the second city of Ireland after Dublin. The city was the chief port of Ireland throughout the middle ages.

Your final destination today is Kilkenny City. Located in the heart if Ireland’s Ancient East, the medieval city of Kilkenny is named after a 6th century monk called Saint Canice. His memory lives on in the beautifully preserved St. Canice’s Cathedral built overlooking the city in the 13th century. (B)

Overnight in Kilkenny

Day 11

Dublin

Visit Kilkenny Castle – The Normans arrived in the 12th century and their legacy remains in the superb and fully restored Kilkenny Castle and in the thriving and cosmopolitan merchant city. The 17th century was a time of great social and political turmoil for Kilkenny. It was the seat of national parliament for a six year period. The famous Oliver Cromwell invaded the city in 1650 and Kilkenny College was attended by such luminaries as Jonathan Swift and Bishop Berkeley.

This afternoon, make our way to Dublin. We will have a city tour of Dublin before being taken to our hotel. (B)

Overnight in Dublin

Day 12

Free day in Dublin- Your Travac Tours Director can assist you with ideas on what to do

Dublin is a lively capital city that’s as intimate as a village and as friendly as your local Irish pub. With its seamless blend of classic visitor sights, excellent social scene and the natural playgrounds of Dublin Bay and the Dublin Mountains framing it on all sides, this laidback city is an adventure in itself. (B)

Overnight in Dublin

Day 13

Ireland to Ottawa

Alas it is time to depart. The driver will transfer the group to Dublin Airport and depart for return flights to Ottawa. (B)

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Hotel Information


The Ardilaun Hotel (Galway) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Taylor's Hill Rd
Galway, Ireland
H91 H29F
+353 91 521 433


The Kilford Arms (Kilkenny) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
John Street Upper
Kilkenny, Ireland
R95 YND8
+353 56 776 1018


Buswells Hotel or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
27 Molesworth St
Dublin, Ireland

+353 1 614 6500


Hampton by Hilton Belfast City Centre (Belfast) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
15 Hope St
Belfast, Ireland
BT12 5EE
+44 28 9031 3335


The Glasshouse Hotel (Sligo) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Swan Point, Abbeyquarter North
Sligo, Ireland
F91 NCA4
+353 71 919 4300


The Rose Hotel (Tralee) or similar

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Dan Spring Rd, Cloon Beg
Tralee, Ireland
V92 HKA4
+353 66 719 9100


Maldron Hotel Shandon Cork City (or similar)

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
11 John Redmond St
Cork, Ireland
T23 A9TF
+353 21 452 9200



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Iceland: Land of Fire and Ice

A Spectacular Escape to the Land of Fire and Ice!

April 24 – 30, 2023

Check off one of your ultimate bucket list destinations this year with our fabulous tour to mother nature’s land of fire and ice!  Iceland is an awe-inspiring country with pristine nature, breathtaking landscapes, and a vibrant culture with deep roots in ancient heritage. You will be pleasantly surprised by its sparsely populated yet epic landscapes, known for their incredible glaciers, geysers, waterfalls, and active volcanic systems.

You will stay at the 4-star Fosshótel in the capital city of Reykjavik, where you can learn about and experience Iceland’s storied history of the Norseman.  Our tour will illuminate many of the ancient sagas from the country’s history that make up not only part of the cultural fabric of Iceland, but that of North America as well.  We will visit Iceland’s top attractions on this tour including the famous thermal waters of the Blue Lagoon, where you can enjoy the views of its otherworldly vistas!

In your free time you could choose to ride an Icelandic pony, snorkel the waters between the tectonic plates, ride a helicopter and land on a volcano, or simply enjoy the local cuisine and spirited culture of Reykjavik.  The options are endless- join us this April as we explore all this fabled island nation has to offer!

This tour is limited to 26 persons. Bookings must be made before January 20, 2023.

Prices increase by $200.00 per person based on double occupancy and $400.00 for single occupancy as of January 21, 2023.

Tour Itinerary


Day 1

Departure from Ottawa

This evening you will depart Ottawa for your flights to Iceland (via Toronto).

Day 2

Arrival in Iceland and Tour of the Reykjanes Peninsula 

Upon your arrival in Iceland you be met by our local guide and taken for breakfast. After breakfast you will go on a sightseeing tour around the Reykjanes Peninsula where you will discover several dormant volcanoes and extensive lava fields. You will also visit the Krýsuvík geothermal area and “the bridge between continents”. Later in the day you will check into your hotel in Reykjavik for your stay – Fosshótel Reykjavik.

Fosshotel, Reykjavík

Day 3

City Tour via private motor coach and local guide

Reykjavík is the world’s most northerly capital, and home to 60% of Iceland’s population. Today Reykjavík is a modern city with a variety of restaurants, museums, galleries, and theatres. On our tour we cover all the cities highlights, with a bit of walking in the downtown core. We will see the old town centre, Parliament, the Cathedral, the Harbour, the National Museum, the Pearl and Höfði house (site of the Iceland summit of 1986). We will drive past the city’s salmon river and the Árbæjarsafn outdoor folk museum, which offers an interesting contrast to the modern buildings. Our drive continues past Reykjavik’s largest outdoor swimming pool in Laugardalur which is heated with water from natural hot springs under the city, the Ásmundur Sveinsson Sculpture Museum and Hallgrímskirkja Church (whose steeple is a Reykjavík landmark). The tour ends at the hotel or the National Museum (your choice). The balance of your day will be at your leisure.

Reykjavík

Day 4

Golden Circle & Fontana Steam Bath 

Today you will enjoy a perfect combination of the hugely popular “Golden Circle Tour” and finish off with a visit to the newly opened Fontana Steam Bath in the quaint little town of Laugarvatn with a local guide. You will also visit the high temperature geyser geothermal area, the Gullfoss (Golden Falls) waterfall and the historical and geological wonder that is Thingvellir National Park. The icing on the cake today is a relaxing visit to Fontana Steam Bath, a natural sauna.

Note: Please bring a swimsuit (towels are provided).

Gullfoss Waterfall

Day 5

Free Day

Today you are completely free to enjoy Reykjavík. It will be your chance to visit some of the museums that make up the fabric of this wonderful city. (B)

Optional tours are also available. ($)

Day 6

Today is another free day. There will also be various optional excursions available to you at an additional cost. (B)

Arial view of Hallgrimskirkja Church in Reykjavik

Day 7

Return to Ottawa

This afternoon you will bid a fond farewell to Iceland. You will be making one final stop at the famous Blue Lagoon before heading to the airport for your return flights back to Ottawa (via Toronto). (B)

Itinerary subject to change.

*Please note that a visit to Iceland entails a fair amount of walking to fully enjoy your holiday experience. You should feel comfortable being able to walk for extended periods of time. Many of the avenues and walkways are uneven. Comfortable walking shoes are essential.

Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa

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Hotel Information


Fosshótel Reykjavík

Hotel website


Hotel Rating

Hotel Address
Þórunnartún 1
105 Reykjavík, Iceland

+354 531 9000



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