Sunday, January 29, 2012

CURACAO

THE CURACAO DIFFERENCE

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BREEZES CURACAO
What's Super-Inclusive? Everything!
Discover the playful side of Paradise

Book your Breezes Resort & Spa 2012 Spring, Summer or Fall getaway now and save up to 55%. We’re offering deep savings on select Super-Inclusive® Breezes Resorts & Spas in Jamaica, the Bahamas, Curacao and Brazil for stays between May 1 and October 31, 2012. Book fast, because rooms will sell out quickly.

*Details: Offer valid on NEW BOOKINGS ONLY. A minimum three (3) night stay is required. Book by February 15. Travel May 1 to October 31, 2012. Valid only at Breezes Resorts & Spas in Jamaica, The Bahamas, Curacao & Brazil. Savings range from 25% – 55% and vary by resort and travel period. Not all resorts have savings up to 55%. Not combinable with any other offer or promotion. Subject to existing closeouts. Not applicable for group bookings. This offer is subject to change, extension or cancellation at any time without notice. Information accurate at time of publishing. Not responsible for errors or omissions. Call for complete details. Cannot be combined with other offers or promotions. Amenities, activities and inclusions vary by resort.

http://www.travelvideo.com/curacao/breezes&ckey=BC001&d=05&c=02&auto


http://www.applevacations.com/hotels/breezes-resort-spa-casino-curacao.html
  • Breezes Curacao photo slideshow - pictures of Breezes Curacao
  • Breezes Curacao photo slideshow - pictures of Breezes Curacao
  • previous pause

Super-Inclusive®
At the Super-Inclusive® Breezes Resorts & Spas virtually everything you can eat, drink & do is included in one simple, upfront price with no tipping allowed. So leave your wallet behind and bring a healthy appetite for great food and endless fun. All on some of the best beaches in the Caribbean and Latin America. At Breezes, you'll find an abundance of land and water sports. Everything from sailing, windsurfing and snorkeling to tennis and rock-climbing - even Golf at our very own PGA-quality Golf Course and some of the best Scuba diving in both Jamaica and Curacao - all with professional instruction.
  • Tropically elegant accommodations
  • Unlimited dining in up to 7 different restaurants
  • Unlimited premium brand drinks & cocktails
  • Golf* + Green Fees & Transportation Included
  • Scuba Diving*
  • Endless list of other Land & Water Sports with Professional Instruction
  • Daily activities
  • Nightly entertainment
  • Fully equipped fitness center & classes
  • Round trip airport-hotel transportation
  • NO TIPPING ALLOWED
  • So much more..
*Amenities, activities and inclusions vary by resort and some may be available at an additional charge.


HYATT REGENCY CURACOA GOLF RESORT,
SPA AND MARINA





http://www.applevacations.com/hotels/hyatt-regency-curacao.html


Experience uncompromising service, superlative views and premier amenities at our luxurious Curacao hotel. Opened in April of 2010, Hyatt Regency Curacao is a full-service Dutch Caribbean resort, perfectly situated on 27 acres of pristine property between the Caribbean Sea and Spanish Water Bay. An integral member of the Caribbean trio universally referred to as the ABC Islands, Curacao is located only 35 miles from both Aruba and Venezuela.


Thursday, January 26, 2012

REGENT AND OCEANIA CRUISE SPECIALS

REGENT SEVEN SEAS

Seven Seas Mariner Ship Listing Thumbnail

These outstanding voyages offer six-star luxury, generous savings and valuable amenities.
With FREE Unlimited Shore Excursions in EVERY port, guests can make every cruise their
own tailored escape. Walk amidst ancient ruins rimming the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas.
Explore Italy’s historic winemaking tradition. Tour the cobblestoned alleys of the Baltic capitals
or indulge in an evening of Russian ballet. Our FREE Unlimited Shore Excursions make every
voyage feel like a customized one.

♦ 2for1
Fares plus additional
bonus savings of up to
$8,000 per suite
♦ FREE Roundtrip Air
♦ FREE Business Air Upgrades
to Europe in Penthouse Suites
and higher
♦ FREE Unlimited Shore Excursions
♦ FREE Luxury Hotel Package
♦ FREE Beverages Including
Fine Wines and Premium Spirits
♦ FREE Pre-Paid Gratuities

Apr 23 7 MONTE CARLO TO BARCELONA Seven Seas Mariner
May 3 10 VENICE TO ROME Seven Seas Voyager
May 30 10 ROME TO BARCELONA Seven Seas Mariner
Jun 3 10 LONDON TO REYKJAVIK Seven Seas Voyager
Jun 16 10 PRESIDENT'S CRUISE
ROME TO ISTANBUL Seven Seas Mariner
Jun 26 7 ISTANBUL TO ATHENS Seven Seas Mariner
Jul 2 10 STOCKHOLM TO COPENHAGEN Seven Seas Voyager
Jul 12 10 COPENHAGEN TO STOCKHOLM Seven Seas Voyager
Jul 13 7 ISTANBUL TO ATHENS Seven Seas Mariner
Jul 20 7 ATHENS TO VENICE Seven Seas Mariner
Jul 22 7 STOCKHOLM TO COPENHAGEN Seven Seas Voyager
Jul 27 10 VENICE TO MONTE CARLO Seven Seas Mariner
Jul 29 10 COPENHAGEN TO STOCKHOLM Seven Seas Voyager
Aug 6 7 MONTE CARLO TO BARCELONA Seven Seas Mariner
Aug 8 7 STOCKHOLM TO COPENHAGEN Seven Seas Voyager
Aug 13 10 BARCELONA TO LIBSON Seven Seas Mariner
Aug 15 10 COPENHAGEN TO STOCKHOLM Seven Seas Voyager
Aug 22 12 VANCOUVER TO SAN FRANCISCO Seven Seas Navigator
Aug 23 14 PRESIDENT'S CRUISE
LIBSON TO VENICE Seven Seas Mariner
Aug 25 12 STOCKHOLM TO LONDON Seven Seas Voyager

Make a new booking on any of the 20 voyages featured above between January 23 and March 31, 2012. Fares are in U.S. dollars, per person, based on double occupancy and include all savings. All fares and offers are for new bookings only, subject to availability, may not be combinable with other offers, are capacity controlled and may be withdrawn at any time without prior notice. Cruise Ship Fuel Surcharge may apply and, if applicable, is additional revenue to Regent Seven Seas Cruises. Air Inclusive Program applies to economy, roundtrip flights only from select U.S. & Canadian gateways: ATL, BOS, CLT, DEN, DFW, EWR, FLL, HNL, IAD, IAH, JFK, LAX, LGA, MCO, MIA, MSP, ORD, PBI, PHL,
PHX, SAN, SAV, SEA, SFO, TPA, YUL, YVR, YYC and YYZ. Airfare is available from all other U.S. & Canadian gateways at an additional charge. Air scheduling and air carrier are at the discretion of Regent Seven Seas
Cruises. Air Inclusive program and air upgrade offers are not combinable with 3rd and/or 4th guests in a suite. Business Class Air from Honolulu requires surcharge. Government fees and taxes of up to $19.50 per
person, per day are additional. Advertised fares include all air-related government taxes surcharges and fees. Regent Seven Seas Cruises reserves the right to correct errors or omissions and to change any and all
fares, fees, and surcharges at any time. Additional terms and conditions may apply and can be found in the Guest Ticket Contract. Ships’ Registry: Bahamas. ©2012 Regent Seven Seas Cruises




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WARM-UP SALE

Are you tired of the cold this winter? It’s time to warm-up with our Annual Winter Warm-Up Sale! Want to know the coolest part? You will start your vacation with up to $200 per stateroom in your pocket…well, on your Sail & Sign® Card but you get the idea!

Book between now and January 28, 2012 and Carnival will load up your Sail & Sign® card with up to $50 per stateroom for 3 and 4 day cruises, up to $100 per stateroom for 5 and 6 day cruises, up to $150 per stateroom for 7 day cruises or up to $200 per stateroom for 8 day or longer cruises. That’s up to $200 cash back to book shore excursions or use anywhere you'd like on board.

CARNIVAL IMAGINATION 3 Day Miami 02/03/12
CARNIVAL GLORY 4 Day Boston 06/14/12
CARNIVAL ECSTASY 5 Day Pt Canaveral 03/17/12
CARNIVAL FANTASY 5 Day Charleston 09/27/12
CARNIVAL DREAM 7 Day Pt Canaveral 02/18/12
CARNIVAL LEGEND 7 Day Tampa 03/18/12
CARNIVAL PRIDE 7 Day Baltimore 04/22/12
CARNIVAL SPLENDOR 7 Day Long Beach(LAX) 06/10/12
CARNIVAL MIRACLE 8 Day New York 05/14/12

The company reserves the right to re-instate the fuel supplement for all guests at up to $9 per person per day if the NYMEX oil price exceeds $70 per barrel.
ADDITIONAL SHIPS & SAIL DATES AVAILABLE

Terms and conditions:
Cruise rates are in U.S. dollars, per person and based on double occupancy. No name changes allowed. Onboard credit offer is non-transferable. Onboard credit is provided as a refundable credit to your Sail & Sign account of $25 per person up to a maximum of $50 per stateroom for 3 and 4 day sailings, $50 per person up to a maximum of $100 per stateroom for 5 & 6 day sailings, $75 per person up to a maximum of $150 per stateroom for 7 day sailings and $100 per person up to a maximum of $200 per stateroom for 8 days or longer sailings. If your Sail & Sign account has a cash balance at the end of the cruise after all authorized purchases have been applied to the account, any remaining unused portion of the onboard credit will be delivered in check form to your stateroom on the morning of debarkation with your final Sail & Sign statement. Onboard credit may not be applied to cruise fare or government taxes and fees.
Offer is capacity controlled and is not combinable with any other discount or promotional offer. Combinable with Fun Select rates only. Government taxes and fees are additional for all guests. Rates are subject to change at any time without prior notice. Category restrictions and exclusions apply. Minimum purchase of category 4A is required. Valid on new bookings only. Offer is applicable on select sailings between 2/2/12-12/31/12. Must book between 1/26/12-1/28/12.

Valentine's Day

Royal Caribbean International(R)
Celebrate your Valentine this year with a romantic cruise.

Liberty of the Seas®
5-Night Western Caribbean
Departing from Fort Lauderdale, FL
February 27, 2012
Starting from: $369†*

Mariner of the Seas®
7-Night Western Caribbean
Departing Galveston, TX
April 8, 2012
Starting from: $639†*

Majesty of the Seas®
3-Night Bahamas
Departing from Miami, FL
March 16, 2012
Starting from: $284†*

Navigator of the Seas®
6-Night Western Caribbean
Departing from Fort Lauderdale, FL
April 8, 2012
Starting from: $579†*

Jewel of the Seas®
4-Night Western Caribbean
Departing from Tampa, FL
March 8, 22; April 5, 23, 2012
Starting from: $399†*

Enchantment of the Seas®
7-Night Bahamas
Departing from Baltimore, MD
April 7, 2012
Starting from: $799†*

†ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL® RESERVES THE RIGHT TO IMPOSE A FUEL SUPPLEMENT ON ALL GUESTS IF THE PRICE OF WEST TEXAS INTERMEDIATE FUEL EXCEEDS $65.00 PER BARREL. THE FUEL SUPPLEMENT FOR 1ST AND 2ND GUESTS WOULD BE NO MORE THAN $10 PER GUEST PER DAY, TO A MAXIMUM OF $140 PER CRUISE; AND FOR ADDITIONAL GUESTS WOULD BE NO MORE THAN $5 PER PERSON PER DAY, TO A MAXIMUM OF $70 PER CRUISE.*
* Prices are per person, cruise only, double occupancy, and in U.S. Dollars. All itineraries and prices are subject to change without notice. Certain restrictions apply. Government taxes and fees are additional. ©2012 Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Ships registry: The Bahamas. Brilliance of the Seas is operated by RCL (UK) Ltd. Subsidiary of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. 12027397 • 1/25/2012

COUNTRY WALKERS

33 Years

It all began with a simple idea: explore the world actively, with passion and commitment on the "road less traveled." With this guiding principle, Country Walkers ended up changing the face of active travel. In 1979, we launched the company from an old barn in Vermont. Although we were small (and our office space rustic), our passion for the beautiful landscape of the surrounding Green Mountains became contagious. Soon we expanded our brand of travel from local to international destinations, discovering new and exotic lands around the world.

In 2012 our paths lead to adventure, with 90 worldwide itineraries for Guided Adventures, Self-Guided Walking & Biking Adventures, Small Ship Cruising, and Private vacations. Every trip is designed to offer the best of a locale; we walk and bike the trails only the locals know, eat the foods they eat, and encounter the sea and sky that embrace their homelands. As we continue to grow, our commitment to responsible tourism remains constant. Walking and biking, of course, are low-impact travel and environmentally sound. We continue our “best sustainability practices,” supporting local initiatives and programs







COUNTRY WALKERS ELECTRONIC BROCHURE:

http://catalog.countrywalkers.com/2012main.html


Use the Internet to look, but use a travel agent to book!


Peru: Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley
Calling All Solo Travelers!
Save Big on
Select Destinations & Departures


Traveling solo does have its benefits—including
NO single supplement on 12 peak-season departures! Whether you're joining us on your first adventure or your 11th, 2012 is the perfect time to venture out as a solo traveler or to invite a friend to share the experience while enjoying independent accommodations.

We'll handle all the details, leaving you free to immerse yourself in one of these amazing destinations!


Italy: Cinque Terre
12 Free Single Supplements for 2012

Alaska: Kenai Peninsula Save $650
Croatia: The Dalmatian Coast Save $725
Wales: Snowdonia & the Northern Coast Save $475
Greece: The Southern Coast Save $495
Ireland: Dingle Bay & Killarney Save $345
Italy: The Lakes Save $950
Italy: Tuscany & Umbria Save $350
Italy: Cinque Terre Save $425
Morocco: Fès to Marrakesh Save $1,025
Peru: Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley Save $950
Peru: Amazon Small Ship Save $1,749
Ecuador: Galápagos Islands Small Ship Save $1,200
Link

Thursday, January 19, 2012

THE IMPORTANCE OF A GREAT TRAVEL AGENT

WHY SHOULD YOU USE A TRAVEL AGENT?

SEE WHAT THE TODAY SHOW HAD TO SAY ABOUT TRAVEL AGENTS TODAY.

http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/26184891/vp/46054707#46054707

Travel For You has the cure for the Winter Blues! Let us create a STRESS-FREE Getaway for you.

We have over 80 years of travel experience to help you plan that perfect vacation or cruise.

Your vacation time is precious. Make sure you get the best value for your valuable time off. Leave the work to us so you can enjoy your vacation!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

CRUISE NEWS

PRINCESS ALASKA CRUISE TOURS - BALCONY BONUS


2012 ALASKA BALCONY BONUS
UP TO $1000 OFF PER STATEROOM AND FREE BALCONY UPGRADES ON MANY SAILINGS.


ALSO:
SAVE UP TO $2000 PER STATEROOM
PLUS, UP TO $100 ONBOARD CREDIT PER STATEROOM
ON SELECT CARIBBEAN, CALIFORNIA COASTAL AND HAWAIIAN ISLANDS SAILINGS.
BOOK BY JAN 23, 2012




Europe River Cruise - Main River
“A continuous series of marvels left us astounded at the beauty of central Europe. Each day saw new destinations and well-planned excursions. We wouldn’t hesitate to recommend your company.”

Curtis & Danielle Anderson
UP TO 2 FOR 1 AIRFARE ON MANY 2012 EUROPEAN RIVER CRUISES (Category C or higher). Offer expires Feb 29, 2012.


acl logo2

FOUNDING FATHERS CRUISE

Declaration of Independence

Itinerary Highlights:

Visit Mount Vernon, home of George Washington

Explore three homes that were once owned by signers of the Declaration of Independence

Walk in the footsteps of George Washington as you discover the rich history of Alexandria

Discover the lives of Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin with our special onboard historian

Click here to see full itinerary details

Map
This new theme cruise, with a special emphasis on Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, is designed to bring you closer to American history than ever before. You will visit three cities, which have served as national capitals, and quaint historic towns, which played pivitol roles in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. Along the way, your cruise through American history is set to a backdrop of scenic beauty and the diverse array of wildlife which inhabits the Chesapeake Bay and nearby waterways. Click here to learn more.
Ports of Call: Philadelphia, Havre de Grace, Chestertown, St. Michaels, Annapolis, St. Mary's City,
Alexandria/Washington D.C.








Independence




MSC CRUISES

ENJOY A FREE UPGRADE FROM
INTERIOR TO BALCONY STATEROOM


Perhaps the only thing more spectacular than the scenery from a magnificent ship is the value of our special upgrade to Balcony Stateroom for the price of an Interior Stateroom. After all, you can enjoy ever-changing vistas with each destination, from pastel villages to sparkling waterfalls and lush exotic islands rising up from the sea. No matter which itinerary you chose, you'll set sail in true Italian elegance and style on a journey you will not soon forget at a value you’ll appreciate forever.

4-Night Caribbean Cruises from $299*pp
7-Night Caribbean Cruises from $649*pp
10-Night Caribbean Cruises from $799*pp
With Complimentary Upgrade To A Balcony Stateroom
*OFFER VALID ON SPECIFIC CARIBBEAN, MEDITERRANEAN AND EUROPE SAILINGS

DISNEY GIVES SNEAK PEEK OF NEW CRUISE SHIP

By Robert Jenkins
Disney Fantasy pool deckPAPENBURG, Germany — New features on the Disney Fantasy were on display during a preview walkthrough of the partially-finished ship this week at the Meyer Werft shipyard. The ship makes its first revenue sailing on March 31. (View a slideshow of some of the new spaces here or by clicking on the photo.)

Planners were motivated by traffic-flow and usage studies done on the Disney Dream, a sister ship that entered service a year ago. Among the major changes:

• A pool deck bar has been replaced by the AquaLab, an interactive splash park that squirts or drenches kids. There are two, 10-foot-long “leaky walls”; as a kid covers the water squirting from one hole, another gushes.

• The bars in the adults-only lounge area, Europa, will be set up in a hub-and-spoke fashion. At the center will be a circular entry bar whose lighting will evoke a carousel’s motion. The four themed bars will be slightly larger than the bars in the District, the adults’ entertainment area on the Dream.

• In the Animator’s Palate dining room, diners will be given placemats bearing the outline of a human figure. Each diner creates a sketch within this outline. The placemats are collected and scanned, and a computer places three of the figures in a clever animation that matches them to Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Pinocchio and others. In unison, they march and dance on the dining room monitors. Each of the nine dining room areas sees only the amateur sketches created by its diners.
























Wednesday, January 11, 2012

CRUISE NEWS

BELOW ARE A FEW CRUISE UPDATES THAT WE HAVE RECEIVED THIS WEEK. CRUISE LINES ARE OFFERING GREAT SPECIALS FOR EARLY BOOKINGS FOR 2012 SAILINGS.

CONTACT TRAVEL FOR YOU FOR DETAILS.

BLOUNT SMALL SHIP ADVENTURES

Explore beautiful Belize and Guatemala in a way only a small ship can.

  • Pull up to private islands where you can relax on pristine white beaches.
  • Swim or snorkel among rainbow colored reefs and vibrant sealife.
  • Cruise up the Rio Dulce in Guatemala, going where no other overnight vessels can.
  • Explore a 400-year-old fort on the dramatic Rio Dulce.

You will love the way our small ships allow you to step directly from ship to shore during two signature bow landings.


The Best of Belize, the Barrier Reef and Guatemala with Blount Small Ship Adventures
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7UrV3I6gYo&feature=youtu.be

Itinerary:
http://blountsmallshipadventures.com/where-we-go/2012-the-best-of-belize-and-the-barrier-reef?view=itinerary

CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES

FEB 19, 2012 7-NIGHT WESTERN CARIBBEAN SAILING FROM NEW ORLEANS ON BOARD THE CARNIVAL CONQUEST
Inside staterooms from $519 per person. Ocean View staterooms from $619 per person. Balcony staterooms from $749 per person
Ports of call: Montego Bay, Jamaica; Grand Cayman; and Cozumel
New Orleans is a great cruise port to visit before or after you sailing!

CARNIVAL BREEZE to include elaborate 'five dimension' movie theater

Carnival Cruise Lines is promising to take passengers to new dimensions on its soon-to-debut ship, Breeze.

The vessel will feature what the line calls a "Thrill 5D Theatre," which is similar to motion-simulator productions found at major theme parks, aquariums and zoos.

The theater is built on a 3-D projection system, which requires the audience to wear special glasses. The "fourth dimension" comes through special effects like squirting water and bubbles, and other enhancements that will tickle guests' legs, blow air on their necks and poke them in their seats – all timed to the action on the movie screen. And the "fifth dimension"? Carnival says it's provided by the seats themselves, which will vibrate and shift in time to the movie.

Carnival Breeze is scheduled to debut June 3 with a 12-day cruise from Venice. It will sail this summer in the Mediterranean out of Barcelona, and then begin a Caribbean itinerary out of Miami on Nov. 24. A virtual tour of the ship is available at carnivalbreeze.com.

AMERICANS FLOCKING TO EUROPEAN CRUISES

Americans are confidently booking cruise vacations to Europe thanks in part to the declining value of the Euro against the dollar. In fact, 71.2 percent of Travel Leaders agents polled indicate they are booking European cruises for 2012, Travel Leaders says in its annual Travel Trends Survey. The vast majority of those cruises are Mediterranean cruises

CRUISE LINES HAVE GREAT PRICING ON EUROPE SAILINGS FOR 2012.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

NEW ORLEANS

New Orleans has jazz, culture, history, culinary delights and so much more....

Cruise lines also have great sailings departing from this active city so add a pre or post visit to New Orleans on to your cruise getaway!




Following disastrous Hurricane Katrina, which struck New Orleans in August 2005, and the Gulf oil spill of 2010, New Orleans has, each time, reemerged with a bang. Indeed, on a recent visit to the city's downtown district, it was almost hard to tell that any tragedy had ever struck at all. The French Quarter teemed with shoppers, Bourbon Street revelries were at full blast, and the Friday lunchers packed in at Galatoire's.

While certain parts of the city are looking better than ever, there are still wide swaths of New Orleans that haven't yet recovered from Katrina's wrath. Gray Line, the tour company that's better known for its nostalgic looks at New Orleans (from "Oak Alley Plantations" to "Ghosts and Spirits"), has created a tour that's a must-do for every visitor to the city who really wants to see, first-hand, the effects of Hurricane Katrina -- and a host of other local tour companies have followed suit. Tours focus on the areas outside of downtown, driving through the worst-hit neighborhoods such as Lakeview, St. Bernard's Parish, the lower Ninth Ward, Gentilly and others. The tours are a sobering and illuminating experience that can be summed up in this comment we overheard about the still-obvious damage: "It's like a whale. You've never understood how big it is until you see it."

Despite changes good and bad, New Orleans retains the savory character that makes it one of America's most intriguing cities. The mystique surrounding this Mississippi River city goes way beyond music and revelry and can be credited to its early mix of settlers -- Creole and Cajun (along with a bit of influence from the Caribbean) -- that even today infect the city's urban scene, from art to culture to cuisine, with an irrepressible joie d'vivre.

ATTRACTIONS:

new orleans cemetery The French Quarter, New Orleans' oldest neighborhood, feels like an old movie. This 7-by-15-block area has loads of character with narrow streets, and two- and three-story French- and Spanish-inspired architecture. It's known for its plethora of bars and jazz clubs, which come to life at night, but the neighborhood is equally fascinating by day.

Highlights include shopping along Royal Street, visiting the historic St. Louis Cathedral, and people-watching on Jackson Square, a hangout for artists displaying their work on the sidewalk. There's also a lovely riverfront park with a walking path.

Jazz lovers will feel right at home in New Orleans. The city boasts a musical legacy that includes pioneers like Sidney Bechet, Louis Armstrong, Buddy Bolden, King Oliver and Jelly Roll Morton -- but you can opt for traditional venues or more contemporary ones. The city's best jazz spots are located in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood (at the west end of the French Quarter). Don't miss Snug Harbor and Spotted Cat. In the French Quarter, Preservation Hall, though not a bar, is a premier venue. Another fascinating stop is the Louisiana Music Factory for its huge collection of jazz recordings.

Organized tours are the best way to gain an insider's view of local history and lore, and to visit the city's unique cemeteries, with their rows of elaborate above-ground tombs (many local cemeteries are unsafe for independent visitors, so always go with a group). Among the best walking tours are the French Quarter, Garden District, Cemetery/Voodoo Tour and other tours offered by the well-qualified guides of Historic New Orleans Tours, Inc. Gray Line offers a variety of motor-related excursions, including the aforementioned Hurricane Katrina tour.

The growing museum district around Lee Circle will interest art lovers. The handsome new Ogden Museum of Southern Art features artists from throughout the region. The Contemporary Arts Center across the road, a combination theater and gallery, is as interesting for its architecture as for its offerings. Or check out the National World War II Museum, where the highlight is an elaborate reconstruction of the Allied Forces' landing on Normandy in June 1944. Art lovers may also want to head over to Julia Street, in the city's up-and-coming Warehouse District, where there are numerous edgy and avant garde galleries.

New Orleans has a serious tradition of voodoo -- and you can sample it. Check out the New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum, where blue candles burn continually in honor of Marie Laveau, who was the Queen of Voodoo in the 1830's. Her grave in St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is cluttered with mementos left by her legion of latter-day followers. You can still visit a voodoo temple, and you'll see voodoo dolls for sale all over town. You can learn all about the practices of voodoo on a Cemetery/Voodoo walking tour with Historic New Orleans Tours, Inc. The tour takes visitors to see the fabled cemeteries of New Orleans -- virtual cities with avenues of stately tombs built above ground because the water table is too high for underground burial.

Take a canoe ride down the bayou via Bayou Barn. The company is based at the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve -- 20 minutes from downtown -- where you can sail your own canoe down Bayou des Families and spot alligators, egrets, turtles, blue herons, bald eagles and more. Guides are available with advance reservations and an additional fee. The park also has walking trails.


--written by Eleanor Berman and Carolyn Spencer Brown; updated by Sarah Schlichter and Caroline Costello