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Senior Travel Newsletter: nature, cruise, barging, volunteer vacations.
Senior travel newsletter: nature travel, educational, cultural, volunteer, cruise and barging vacations worldwide.
New stories, December 1, 2014 
TravelWatch: Senior Travel Newsletter.

What's on the Travel News Menu for YOU Today
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1. The official launch in 2014 of Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way is a fresh reason for travelers to plan a trip to the country and enjoy regions that most international visitors have yet to explore.
2. A new comprehensive, interactive African Safari website allows potential travelers to search the offers and options of more than 1,200 tour operators in 14 countries. Articles, reviews and compare-and-contrast tools make decision-making more personal and more fun.
3. Our readers are always keen to include UNESCO World Heritage Sites on their trips, so they will be interested to hear about a small-ship cruise operator partnering with UNESCO to provide in-depth lectures aboard ship about sites they will be visiting.
4. The New7Wonders organization has just announced the seven top cities in the world, selected by democratic vote through several stages over the past couple of years. Do you agree with the voter choices?
5. One of the world's most respected river cruise companies is heading back to Egypt in 2015, offering luxurious Nile River cruise and land exploration, starting in October. Book early for significant savings.

Before planning your next adventure, you may compare accommodation alternatives with sites such as www.trivago.com or use their data base for further information about your destination and read traveler hotel reviews.

Introducing Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way
Downpatrick Head, Ireland, the Wild Atlantic Way.
Tourism Ireland recently unveiled a new Wild Atlantic Way micro-website, www.ireland.com/wild-atlantic-way, to encourage visitor planning for travel along the newly-designated 2,500-kilometer/1,530-mile route. Officially launched in March 2014, the Wild Atlantic Way is an exciting and challenging step off the traditional tourist trail, a touring route that promises to share the secrets of Ireland's seascapes, traditions and culture.
Dingle Harbour fishing boats, Ireland.
Valentia Lighthouse, Ireland, the Wild Atlantic Way.
There are five detailed route sections, each with inspiring imagery , descriptions and audio visuals. A great deal of thought has gone into creating eight itineraries, consisting of five linear routes and three epicentre routes of the Wild Atlantic Way. Your choice whether to do the west coast of Ireland in a single extended trip or take in one or two regions in a more leisurely holiday fashion.
Top Left: Dingle Harbour, County Kerry. Failte Ireland
Top Right: Downpatrick Head, County Mayo. Failte Ireland
Valentia Lighthouse, County Kerry.
 Failte Ireland
Fresh Wild Atlantic Way seafood.
Expect delicious fresh seafood as a cuisine highlight of coastal exploration. Failte Ireland
The micro-site also contains practical information about traveling the route. Whether you choose to travel by car, bike, walk or take a tour bus, options for experiencing the Wild Atlantic Way are varied and suit the needs and budgets of any traveler. Www.ireland.com/wild-atlantic-way also contains information about local access, tour operators and tourist offices plus additional useful information on places to stay and things to see and do. Tourism Ireland proudly proclaims this to be the longest fully-signposted driving route in the world! It is easily accessed from Shannon Airport or is just a 2.5 hour drive from Dublin.
Lonely Planet has named Ireland one of the world's best countries to visit in 2015. The prestigious accolade was bestowed by the influential travel guide's Best in Travel 2015 publication, which looks at the hottest global trends, destinations and experiences to anticipate in the year ahead. Lonely Planet spokesperson Nóirín Hegarty said: "With the Wild Atlantic Way now fully open and a new sense of optimism surging through the country, 2015 really is the time to go to Ireland.
Comprehensive New African Travel Website
Includes 1,200+ Safari Tour Operators in 14 Countries
Most senior travelers have an African safari on their bucket list, but researching in the right places, never mind planning and carrying out such a trip-of-a-lifetime can be daunting in its immensity. A new travel site, Your African Safari (YAS) www.yourafricansafari.com, is especially geared to travelers who do not know which tour operator to use, which countries or parks to visit. They need to educate themselves more by studying safari photos and checking out reviews. YAS offers a wide range of features with safari reviews, tour packages, photos, articles, social networking and much more.
African elephant splashing in river.
Elephant splashing.
Cape Travel Online
African leopard resting in a tree.
Leopard resting at Moremi Game Reserve, Botswana. Safari & Guide Services
YAS's multi-purpose design includes the ability to do complex searches on safari itineraries, short-list tour companies, submit one-click safari quote requests, find out information on safari countries and share the safari experience with previous tour clients via social media. It presently features 100+ articles, 1,200+ tour operators, 1,500+ safari itineraries and 4,400+ photos from over 75 top African safari destinations. These numbers are steadily growing as the site gains traction.
According to the UN World Tourism Organization, Africa has seen tremendous growth in 2014, and in 2013, it reached a new record with over 56 million visitors. Sixty-five percent of visitors traveled to sub-Saharan Africa, where the safari countries are located. South Africa, the top sub-Saharan destination, enjoyed a 10% increase in international travelers in 2012 while Tanzania, home of the Serengeti, saw a whopping 24% increase. The number of international travelers to East Africa is predicted to triple by 2030 to 37 million.
Victoria Falls, Zambia.
Victoria Falls National Park, Zambia.  Pembury Tours
Visitors to YAS will find a wealth of information at their fingertips, from detailed information on 14 African countries including electrical plug type used, languages spoken and local currencies, to required malaria regimens for 76 game parks.
Once users choose their safari destination, they can view which safari companies operate in the selected country. Or, they can search tour operators via their tour packages using specific criteria such as number of days, price and activity level. YAS then gives users the ability to shortlist and compare up to five tour operators at the same time. Users can also solicit input on selected itineraries by sharing their lists with others on various social media sites.
Camel safari in the desert area of Namibia.
Camel Safari. Travelclick
Small-Ship Cruise Line Parters with UNESCO
As part of its newly-formed partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Seabourn, www.seabourn.com, has announced it will host prominent world heritage experts as a new element of its acclaimed Seabourn Conversations enrichment and special guest entertainment program. UNESCO-focused Conversation topics will include culture, heritage, history and the importance of sustainable tourism in preserving World Heritage Sites.
Seabourn Quest small-ship cruising.
Sharing their insights onboard Seabourn vessels over the next year-and-a-half will be a host of UNESCO advisors and consultants. UNESCO seeks to encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. There are more than a dozen UNESCO speakers scheduled to take part in Seabourn Conversations on voyages around the world in the year ahead.
Seabourn Quest off Elba, Italy. © 2011 Seabourn
"UNESCO's vital role in encouraging cultural understanding and preservation will make for fascinating conversation on Seabourn vessels around the world," Seabourn Senior Vice President, Marketing and Sales John Delaney said.

"The significance of cultural experiences only continues to grow, and we're excited to welcome those who lend their expertise to UNESCO to engage our guests about such important topics as sustainable tourism, culture and heritage."
Seabourn Sojourn small-ship cruising.
Seabourn Sojourn at Sea. © 2011 Seabourn
Seabourn's ships circle the globe throughout the year and include more than 150 designated World Heritage Sites in its itineraries. Through its partnership with UNESCO, Seabourn will offer deeper insight and behind-the-scenes information about current and future World Heritage sites and projects. The line has created special World Heritage Discovery Tours with exclusive enhanced content developed in cooperation with UNESCO World Heritage site managers and tour experts. Fares for Seabourn optional excursions that offer UNESCO World Heritage Sites will include a small donation to UNESCO's World Heritage Fund.
To learn more about the vital importance of UNESCO in preserving the world's cultural and natural heritage for travelers to experience, see a feature article in our web magazine's permanent Travel Article Library, "UNESCO World Heritage Sites are Vacation Magnets".
Introducing the New7Wonders Seven Best Cities of the World
On July 10, 2007 an estimated 1.6 billion viewers in more than 170 countries tuned in to watch a much-anticipated ceremony that announced the manmade/cultural New7Wonders of the World. A few years later there was another democratic phenomenon with more than 100 million individuals around the world selecting the New7Wonders of the Natural World. Now, announced on December 7, 2014, another global voting campaign has resulted in the designation of the world's top Seven Cities. I cannot help wondering what the next theme will be!

In alphabetical order, the seven winners are: Beirut (Lebanon), Doha (Qatar), Durban (South Africa), Havana (Cuba), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), La Paz (Bolivia) and Vigan (Philippines). Some are surprising; others are virtually unknown destinations to most travelers, so this will be an opportunity to expand our knowledge, and maybe even decide to travel to some of them in future.

Uniworld's River Tosca Resumes Cruising Egypt's Legendary River in 2015
Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection, www.uniworld.com, announces they will set sail once again on Egypt's great Nile River onboard the elegant, all-suite River Tosca commencing October 2015. Uniworld is one of several companies in The Travel Corporation family of brands, including Trafalgar, Insight Vacations and Contiki, each one committed to bringing travel back to Egypt.
River Tosca, Uniworld Egyptian Nile river cruise ship.
Uniworld will resume its first sailing on October 3, 2015 with "Splendors of Egypt & the Nile," a 12-day program starting and ending in Cairo. Guests will spend four nights at the luxurious Four Seasons Cairo at Nile Plaza and they will spend seven nights onboard the elegant 82-passenger all-suite River Tosca – recognized by Egypt's Ministry of Tourism in 2012 as "Best Cruise Ship" out of nearly 300 cruise ships sailing the Nile River.
River Tosca will cruise Egypt's Nile River with Uniworld's "Splendors of Egypt & the Nile" itinerary.
River Tosca, Uniworld Egyptian Nile river cruise sundeck.
River Tosca, Uniworld Egyptian Nile river cruise twin bed suite.
Left: River Tosca sundeck offers great shoreline views while cruising through history.
Right: A twin bed room aboard the elegant all-suite, 82-passenger River Tosca.
"Egypt is one of the most awe-inspiring destinations that I have ever visited, and one that no culturally-curious traveler will want to miss. I am delighted we are able to resume sailing the Nile and taking our guests to Egypt's most historic sites," states Guy Young, president of Uniworld.
From the moment guests arrive in Egypt, Uniworld's team of professionals will be on hand to take care of all guests' details. Egyptologists lead small group excursions to such culturally significant sites as the Temples of Karnak and Luxor; various monuments around Ancient Memphis, including the great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx; the Valley of the Kings; and the Temples of Horus, Hathor, and Hatshepsut.

Uniworld encourages travelers to book early for the greatest savings, including couples who pay in full at time of reservation before March 30, 2015. For more details, please visit the company's Egypt travel web pages.
Uniworld river cruise and land tour includes a visit to the Giza pyramids, Egypt.
Egypt's iconic Giza pyramids are the only remaining site from the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
Based in Los Angeles, Calif., Uniworld offers all-inclusive itineraries in Europe, as well as voyages in Russia, China, Vietnam and Cambodia, India, and Egypt – a total of 22 rivers in 29 countries worldwide. With an average capacity of 130 guests, its luxurious ships feature exclusive excursions, gourmet cuisine, and the highest staff-to-guest ratio in the river cruise industry.
Images courtesy of Uniworld.

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Page updated: 8 December 2014
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