We are extremely interested in history and enjoy visiting different cultures. In August ’04 we visited Bulgaria. After spending 10 days in this largely unknown jewel of the Balkans, we wanted to tell our friends that Bulgaria has everything anyone would expect for a perfect vacation.

Customized tour

Our trip was planned by Balkan Travel & Tours in New York City (phone 888/763-4288 or 212/594-9000 or visit www.balkan-travel.com). It cost $1,115 per person, with additional...


by Henry Linden, Torrance, CA

I love to travel. Since I have visited about 75 countries, I am constantly on the lookout for new and unusual experiences.

About a year ago I was thinking about going to the island of Spitsbergen in the Svalbard archipelago, located between Greenland and Norway, to get an idea of what it is like to live in an Arctic region. I contacted travel agencies in the town of Longyearbyen in Spitsbergen, and they sent me brochures on what they had to offer...


by Yvonne Michie Horn, Santa Rosa, CA

“Je voudrais pasta avec fromage, s’il vous plait.” Eight-year-old Taylor, who at home is highly suspicious of anything stranger on her plate than noodles with cheese, had practiced her dining-out phrase to perfection. Her brother, 12-year-old Max, on the other hand, was ready to try anything, with one exception: “No innards.”

While “February in Paris” doesn’t have the same hummability as “April in Paris,” our family group — parents, kids...


A couple mailed to ITN a copy of their letter to Grand Circle Travel, as follows.

My wife and I were on your “Great Rivers of Europe” riverboat cruise from Vienna to Amsterdam, embarking July 2, 2004. We are “Inner Circle” members.

While we were extremely pleased with the river cruise, the accommodations, the program and the personnel, we feel it necessary to complain about the return flight arrangements from Frankfurt, Germany, to Washington, D.C., on July 17.

This was...


by Nili Olay, New York, NY

My husband, Jerry, and I live in New York City. As much as we love the city, we do like to get to a warm climate for a while each winter. Southern Africa seemed a logical choice until I started to read the guidebooks. They all warned that during the wet season the animals are hard to see. Also, the words “wet season” were discouraging. Did I really want a lot of rain on my trip?

I decided to go ahead and at least research a possible trip —- if...


by Gloria Grant, Chevy Chase, MD

As a docent at Washington, D.C.’s, Hillwood Museum, featuring fabulous Russian treasures, I have been fascinated with a trip Catherine the Great made down the Dnieper River in 1787. Accompanied by the Austrian emperor and other diplomatic guests, she led a tour of her expanding empire from Kiev to the Crimea, sailing in a fleet of 80 red-and-gold Roman-style galleys, each with its own orchestra.

So when I learned of a tour in Catherine’s wake,...


by Jack Ogg, Houstin, TX

My wife, Connie, and I, in planning our Southeast Asia trip with our son Jon and his wife, Kendra, in late 2003, originally intended to include only Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand and Cambodia (the countries included in our special Cathay Pacific promotion) on our itinerary. However, the more we read, the more we wanted to extend the trip to Nepal. The very names Kathmandu, Mt. Everest and Tiger Tops conjured up our spirit of adventure. We were not...

Jerash’s Colonnaded Street, the Cardo, is the architectural spirit of ancient Ge
Visiting the spectacular sites of Petra and Jerash