Stratford-upon-Avon

Took the Train from Marylebone Station in London which takes about 2 1/2 hours

It was not a pleasant trip since that day on May 6 had many delays on this route.Every time a Train was cancelled I got off at a new stop and then a new Train was cancelled.At that point I made many new friends who faced the same issues so it was not a totally negative experience.

When I finally arrived in Stratford-upon-Avon after making some good bets on where I should get off and which Train I hoped would actually arrive I was greeted by old style English hospitality.

The Taxi driver would not take a tip and even carried my bags into the Hotel to the Reception area which was not easy to find.

I chose the Arden Hotel since they recently joined Hyatt and as a result I could use Hyatt rewards to get 2 free nights.

The Hotel was old and very charming that charm of course comes at a cost no Elevator.

I was taken to a room with a short group of steps with the wonderful lady at reception taking my bags to my room.

It had a great view of the Avon river and the Royal Shakespeare Company right across the street.

In the Bathroom was a old tub that is larger then many rooms in London or New York City.

It was late afternoon so I quickly went to take a walk to get a feel for the area.I also had booked 2 shows at the RSC so I had very little time to take a quick view of the area.

All in all the 2 Days were great I got out of London got some fresh air visited a lovely and charming city with people who are lovely and charming.

This is not only a great day trip from London but a nice place to stop for a few days.

The RSC from my room.
Stratford-upon-Avon
You can feel the History.
Arden Hotel

Santorini

Have been staying at the Atlantis Hotel in Santorini……… and Wow what a view.The view from my balcony is so beautiful it is difficult to have a desire to leave the room.

But this Island is a pleasure to explore and you can do it for very low cost.The central bus station on Fira has a group of buses that go all over the Island and they are new and have Air Conditioning.The rides are around 2USD to almost any part of the Island.

You also can take many long walks that can give you great views as well.

The Atlantis Hotel does not have an elevator so you have to reserve long in advance if you want a room on the first floor.

This property is a good value and since it is in Fira facing the Aegean it has fantastic views.

The rooms are basic but have a Fridge and Air Conditioning that actually works.

It costs about 20USD to take a Taxi from the Airport to the Hotel.


What a view !!!!!

The Lake District of Chile

After leaving Ushuaia our ship headed up the Coast of Chile to an area that is wild and unspoiled and often beautiful although it is often hidden by clouds and rain and high wind.

It is an area that gives you the feeling you have been transported to another Planet it carries a feeling of mystery of something alien.

The trip took 2-3 days before we reached Puerto Arenas we did not stay long since high winds did not allow for safe passage to the port so we continued to

Puerto Montt a very beautiful and unique area that is also very young geologically.It has had the most powerful earthquakes in recorded history some as high as 9.6 which occured in 1960 known as the Great Chilean earthquake.

Like New Zealand which also has a very active land area these areas have enormous beauty while they can be potentially dangerous.So that Ying and Yang adds to their appeal.These Pics will give you a feel for the place.

Use it or lose it.

The best way to accumulate Rewards quickly are with sign up bonuses for various credit cards with the main Banks and American Express.

The problem is the Reward programs are being devalued more often and with a greater impact to members of the programs.

My opinion outlined in a previous post is you need to model your Rewards portfolio in the same manner as an Investment portfolio.In that sense no matter where you travel and whatever Airline you use you will have a strategy to Travel at low cost just by using your Rewards.

The issue is the Big Guys either Marriott or IHG or Hyatt or Delta or United or British Airways or American keep raising the bar on the use of their currency then why bother at all in this Rewards Jamboree.

At this point the only logical answer is plan a trip and either use the Rewards you have now or plan a trip sign up for the bonus from the program or programs you think will work best and use them in a short time because they are losing value as I am writing this post.

All the major Hotel programs are watching each other lower the value of their programs where it stops no one knows.

So the mantra is Use it or lose it.

IWM Duxford

After leaving Alesund I flew with Norwegian Air to Oslo and then flew to Gatwick.

From London you take the Train from Kings Cross to Cambridge and from there to Duxford for the Museum.I decided to go on Sunday since a Shuttle picks you up near the Train station and takes you to the main entrance of the Museum.

The Bus is about 3 USD and runs about 3 times a day it is No. 132

It is a lot of fun to be close to the Aircraft that fought all through World War 2 and even watching them in action if any are being flown that day.

Make some time when you are in London and you can experience the Museum and Cambridge.

The Bus from Cambridge is about 30-40 minutes.

Here are some Pics.


A quick trip to Alesund

It is strange but often I find that the colder the climate the warmer are the people.This is certainly true in Norway.

After flying on Norwegian air from Geneva to Oslo I then took a short flight to Alesund.The Weather was typical really awful with

rain and high wind with cold temperture as well.

Alesund is made up of many islands so if you go any type of distance on Public transportation you will enter a major adventure.It will involve Buses,Ferries then Buses that drive on Ferries and more Buses.That was my trip from Alesund to the Geirangerfjord.This is a trip that is in my view even more interesting then the destination.

You can arrange your trip to stay in the city of Geiranger for a few hours which has nice places to eat and friendly local people.

Here are a few Pics


On my Bus on the Ferry.

On the Ferry to
Geirangerfjord

The front of the Bus on the front of the Ferry.

Ferry to Geirangerfjord
Getting close to another Ferry or another Bus.

Did you know there is a Canyon in New York ?


You heard it right the largest Canyon on the East coast it is called

Ausable Chasm and it is a fun visit.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

I came from Burlington Vermont with a local Ferry which takes about 1 hour.

You call the great people at the Park and they send a free Shuttle to pick you up about 10-15 minutes later.

After you arrive you decide what route you want to take and if you want to include the raft tour.Yup a raft tour which in my view is the best part of the adventure.

The various trips through the park take an average of 2-3 hours so you can arrange to take the Shuttle back if you are coming from Burlington.

As usual the Pics are the best way to get a feel for the experience.

So if you are in the area check it out.


Near the entrance to the Park.