Author: Richard Telling

Cruise Free As A Speaker

The best part is that you do not need to have any type of professional speaking experience. In fact, you are encouraged to speak in your own conversational style. Also, you may not have to do any additional study or research. How well you already know the subject matter of your hobby, passion, or interest will determine if any additional study is necessary.

If you want to cruise free without selling cruises, or building a website, then the following information is for you.

Most cruise lines, as part of the package they offer their passengers, make available people (called Enrichment Lecturers) who can speak on a subject matter in the areas of:

  • General interest,
  • Arts and craft,
  • Or a destination.

In exchange, the cruise line provides the speaker and a companion free passage aboard ship. However, you may have to pay taxes, port fees, and other incidental charges.

In a nutshell, determine in which of the above categories you would place your hobby, passion, or interest. Then, learn the process by which you can get the cruise lines to let you share your knowledge in exchange for a free cruise.

Take the necessary steps to get a lifetime of free cruises. Simply share your hobby, passion, or interest as an On-board Lecturer. One complimentary cruise for you and your companion is well worth the cost, and the effort to go through these eight easy steps.

Call any major cruise line and ask how you can qualify to become an enrichment lecturer. Simply network and follow the suggestions your are given.

Info of Alaskan Cruise

In the last few years, Alaskan cruises have become a popular way for people to visit Alaska and enjoy its natural beauty. The cruises provide a combined ability for travelers to enjoy the beauty of Alaskan lands and take part of many entertainment activities that are available on cruise ships.

The two most popular routes for Alaska cruises are the Vancouver roundtrip and Seattle roundtrip. Cruises with those two routes generally take 7 days and have various stop points in Alaska depending on cruise lines, ships, and itineraries. However, there are many other routes for Alaska cruises. Some of the other popular routes are San Francisco roundtrip, Whittier to Vancouver, Vancouver to Whittier, Seward to Vancouver, and Vancouver to Seward.

There are many cruise lines that offer Alaska cruises ranging from some of the biggest cruise lines in the world to small cruise companies with 1 or 2 ships that offer custom Alaska cruises. Princess Cruises and Holland America Cruise Line have the most comprehensive Alaskan cruise offerings. Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises are also fairly well represented in the Alaska cruise market.

Generally, Alaskan cruise season runs from May to September of each year. In other months, the weather in Alaska and surrounding region is too cold for a fun cruise vacation. Most of the rooms on cruise ships are usually booked by the end of March. Thus, the earlier one decides and buys a cruise, the more opportunities there would be for room choice. Also, travel agencies sometimes offer promotions or discounts for early birds.

Rough Night

Out of the cockpit a solid wall of wind and spray, the standing rigging screaming. The boat is veering round quickly, the wind on her port beam laying her over. Going to starboard! It has gone! Struggling forward, coachroof, foredeck, the bollard. Still chain round it, over the gypsy. Realisation, the chain has jumped off the stemhead roller and is now over the toerail against a pulpit stanchion. “OK, take it easy” he thought, “panic’s over, she’s still moored.” Now the boat is coming back through the wind, turning to port. Pitching as the seas come under the bow, diving with the stemhead nearly under.

“And this on a sheltered mooring in a sheltered loch, thirty miles from the open sea, the mountains all around. God help anyone outside tonight”. His head torch showed the surface of the sea being torn to shreds, spray filling the air. The wind had veered and was now coming round the headland which should provide shelter. He waited, feeling the boat pitching and tugging at the chain, waiting for a chance to lift it back onto the roller. “Hell, I could loose my fingers here” he thought, “some rope needed.” He didn’t want to go aft then forward again but — yes, it’s still there, a small coil of six millimetre behind the liferaft.

Sitting on the liferaft he uncoiled it and kneeled on the foredeck to feed a bight under the chain. “Now, wait your chance boy, when she dives her head down.”

Another gust slammed the boat on her starboard side and she started to swing, pushed hard over to port, then bows up, now down. Heaving up and back on the line as the head went down, the chain went back on the roller.

“OK, Job done back indoors”. He secured the line trying to seize the chain over the stemhead fitting, and worked his way aft.
Another giant gust, spray and perhaps rain, he couldn’t tell, a banshee wail, a strange noise like gravel being poured. What—? The wind generator, backed, confused by the violent rotating gusts was grinding to a halt, sea spray crashing through the blades. Stepping back into the cockpit the horror struck him. “If something solid, a twig, sea weed, a bird,- God forbid, a rope’s end – went into those blades, at the speed they’re going there’ll be hundred mile an hour plastic all over the cockpit”.

There was nothing to be done then, wind gusting to eighty or ninety knots it would be madness to go anywhere near the windmill but he resolved to find a way of tying it to make it safe in a gale in future.

Now, in the grim, grey, begrudging daylight, thinking back on the night, tired but not sleepy, I realise it was me who lived through that night, and wonder, philosophically, if I am better for it. Huh!

National Parks in Nepal

Chitwan NP

It is the oldest national park of Nepal. It is located to the south west part of Kathmandu. It has covered 932 sq km of total land area. It lies in Chitwan district. This park provides habitat for more than 700 species of wild animals.. It is famous for endangered species of mammals like Bengal tiger and one horned rhino. It has been enlisted in the world heritage sites by UNESCO. In this park there are 68 species of mammals. The park is also famous for Ghariyal (alligator).

Sagarmatha NP

It lies in Solukhumbu district. This park was established in 1976. It is located to the north east part from Kathmandu valley. This park covers 1,148 sq km of total land area. World’s highest peak Mt. Everest lies within the boundary of this park. The major attraction of this park is Mt. Everest. Musk dear, Himlayan black bear, snow leopard, red panda are the mammals found in this park. Along with Mt. Everest this park includes other mountains like Mt. Choyu, Lhotse, Nuptse, Amadablam etc.

Langtang NP

It is situated in Rasuwa district. It was established in 1976. It lies to the north of Kathmandu valley. It covers 1710 sq km of total land area. The major attractions of this park are wild dog, red panda, Himalayan black bear, ghoral musk dear, etc. Various species of Rhododendron flower make the scenery of the park more beautiful.

Rara NP

It lies in Mugu and Jumla district. This park was established in 1967. It is located in the north western part of Kathmandu valley. It is the smallest national park of Nepal. Rara Lake is the main attraction of this park. Rara Lake is quoted as the nymph of heaven by various travelers. Rara Lake is the biggest lake of Nepal. It provides habitat for various species of wild animals. Some of the wild animals found in this area are musk dear, ghoral, jharal, Indian leopard, Himalayan black bear, snow leopard, etc.

Khaptad NP

It is located to the west of Kathmandu. This park was established in 1984. It covers the land area of four different districts namely Doti, Achham, Bajhang, Bajura. Its area stretches to 225 sq km. The main attraction is the ashram of Khaptad baba. It is one of the Hindu pilgrim sites. This national park is the habitat for 23 mammals, 287 birds, 23 amphibians and reptiles. The mammals found in this national park are Himalayan black bear, Asiatic wild dog, and musk deer.

Shey Phoksundo NP

It is the largest national park of Nepal. It was established in 1984. It covers an area of 3555 sq km. The main attractions are Shey Phoksundo Lake and Kanjirowa Himal. This national parks lies in the north-west part of Nepal. This national park covers the area of two districts Mugu and Dolpa. It is the habitat of various wild animals like Himalayan thar, ghoral, snow leopard, blue ship, grey wolf, Himalayan black bear, musk deer, jackal, martens, etc. Similarly, various flowers like rhododendron, juniper, etc are available in this national park.

Honeymoon in Greece

Arriving at Eleftherios Venizelos airport, it is a good idea to spend the first couple of days in Athens, the capital city of old civilization. Take a day sightseeing tour of the city, visit the Acropolis or the Museum, and you may wish to go a bit further to Sounio and visit the ancient ruins of the Temple of Poseidon and gaze at the most spectacular sunset. Later at night take a walk in Plaka, along the colorful shops where you can buy your souvenirs or top quality jewelry.

Of course, Athens is not the place to stay during the hot summer months. Arrange to spend most of your honeymoon on the Cyclades Islands. The most popular destinations for newlyweds are Mykonos, Santorini and Crete.

Crete has a lot to offer, as it is the biggest island in the Aegean. There are ancient sites to visit like the labyrinth in Knossos, natural beauties such as the Samaria Gorge, and beaches with crystal clear waters. If you are a mountain lover, you can hire a car and drive up the mountains in central Crete, where you will find many picturesque, traditional villages. If you want your Crete honeymoon to be romantic or luxurious, there are plenty of five-star hotels and resorts that provide all the facilities required to fulfill your wishes. You can choose to relax by the pool of your hotel or walk in the streets of Chania or Rethymno, and visit the old towns. You can sample traditional Greek dishes and drink local wine or ‘raki’. The diversity of the island allows you to have the holiday you want.

From Crete you can head north to Santorini. Although you can get there by plane, it is much better to travel by boat so as not to miss the unique scenery of the port, like the windy road leading from the port to the top of the island. You can take a donkey ride from the old port up to Fira, taking in the incredible view of the caldera. Visit Oia late in the afternoon, walk along the narrow cobbled streets and make sure you find a spot at a rooftop to enjoy the world’s most magnificent sunset. Going down the other side of the island, the scenery is completely different. You will drive through many of the islands’ vineyards and finally reach the coastline. Practically every beach is of a different colour: red, black, or white. The contrast is amazing. You may want to take some coloured sand back home from your Santorini honeymoon.

Your final destination should be none other than the cosmopolitan Mykonos. Spend some days of your honeymoon in Mykonos like a celebrity. Spend your day at the beach, sipping your cocktail by the sea. At night enjoy the party till the morning hours in Chora, where bars and night clubs are vibrating with music and dance.

Italian Town of Vico Equense

Although little known, Vico Equense has all the qualities to charm even seasoned travelers. The town possesses a long history, and most likely one of the first ones built on the Sorrento Peninsula. Vico Equense is gifted with a beautiful pebbled beach, perfect for those who cannot get enough of the ocean. It is also home to a lovely pink hued church perched dramatically on a cliff. If you are interested in history and romance, the village’s crenellated Giusso castle, sitting on the coast, will indulge your curiosity.

Staying at Vico Equense means being reacquainted with peace and relaxation. Even a simple walk through this village revitalizes your soul and body. Aside from the main town, you can easily see other small villages nestled on lush highlands in the distance. The landscape, which is adorned with vineyards, citrus groves and olive groves, will easily invoke admiration and inspiration from anyone who sees it. Because of its ideal location, you can easily access the mountains and the sea in just a few minutes. The highest peak in the area is Mount Faito, standing at about 1400 meters.

Vico Equense is also blessed with sulphurous springs, known for their therapeutic properties. That is why the town has established a range of marvelous thermal baths and spa facilities. While here, grab the opportunity to try one of their bath treatments that have delighted many guests over the years. A centuries old town like Vico must have a number of incredible old buildings, and this is quite true here. The town had been inhabited by the Greeks, Etruscans and the Romans. Today, surviving structures like the Church of Our Lady of Graces, and the Angevin Castle are testaments to the town’s incredible past.

What is also surprising about Vico Equense is its plethora of excellent restaurants and superb hotels. Some of its most notable restaurants include the Salvatore De Gennaro and Annamaria Cuomo. If you would like to combine good food and the charm of the medieval ages, then book a meal at Torre del Saracino. As the name suggests, the venue for this unforgettable dining experience is on top of a 17th century tower. If you venture to the La Tradizione market, you can enjoy the region’s specialties, which are cured meat and dairy products.

Traveling Long Journeys

Some people have height sickness and these people should be aware of their problem because they might just throw up during flights. So they should be taking the right kind of medication beforehand that suits them well if they must fly.

Once a colleague of mine was on leave from work and he was flying to United States for higher studies and he described his journey being long, dull and boring. I was surprised at his attitude! I was also on leave from work flying for a similar purpose only a few days earlier but though the journey was long, there were lots of interesting things to do to keep you engaged. For instance, you could listen to music or watch movies. You could view the map of where the position of the airplane was at the current moment. You could enjoy drinking the variety of juices and other cold drinks that were offered every few hours and not to speak of the good meals that were served once or twice in a while. If you are seated beside a window, you could watch the white clouds and that may remind you that every cloud has a silver lining. LOL! Or you could just fall into a long and relaxed slumber and dream sweet dreams about what the outcome of your journey held for you. So no way you could call a journey like this dull and boring.

During my journey to U.S, I had initially a flight to London and from there a connecting flight to Chicago. Then I flew to Dallas. It was a very, very long journey I admit and I did not make this kind of journey for quite a while, and also I am used to routine-like life and I am not very adventuresome. But on a journey like this, would you like to jump to your destination? I bet not.

When I was on this travel, I was wide awake, aware of my surroundings and above all, enjoying the fun and pleasure of the experience. After all, while traveling from a source to the destination, it is usually the journey that really matters and which you should be able to take a grasp of lovingly, happily and enjoying to your heart’s content.

Temples Will Find In Kalugumalai

Jaina Abode

The temple has a unique architecture. Some of the most notable features are the many figures on the wall. The figures represent the most notable followers of the jain faith from the nearby villages. The main figure is that of the main deity known as Araimalai Alwar.

According to experts, the temple has over 150 sculptures that were contributed by different people. Some of the people who contributed the sculptures are: carpenters, smiths, cultivators and potters. The sculptures were also contributed by high-ranking officials bearing the titles of Kavidi, Enadi and Etti.

Kalugasalamoorthy Temple

The temple is said to have been constructed in the 18th century. The temple’s main deity is Lord Murugan and his wife Deivanai. The main deity and entrance halls have many exciting structural additions. Other than the many exciting features, the temple also has many shrines including those of Akilandeswari, shiva, Vinayakar and many lesser deities.

Vettuvan Koil

This temple dates back to the 8th century. It’s an unfinished cave temple that is breathtaking to look at. It has a rectangular shape where the middle part is sculpted from a one piece of rock. The temple has great looking carvings that are synonymous to those found during the Pandya era.

There are many sculptures on the temple. Experts say that the sculptures are about 122. The most notable ones are those of Vishnu, Dakshinamoorthy, and Brahma.

How To Get To Kalugumalai

It’s good to note that there are no regular flights from neighboring towns to Kalugumalai. There is also no trains to the town; therefore, the best way of getting to the town is using bus or car.

If you are travelling from another country, you should get to the Tuticorin airport. You should then take a bus or taxi that will take you to Kalugumalai.

If you want to use train, you should take a train that will take you to Kovilpatti and then from there take a taxi or bus.

Island Jewel of Croatia

Hvar also treats nature lovers with stunning beaches and remote coves, including Dubovica Beach. This pebbled beach features very clear water and a prominent waterfront restaurant. Part of Hvar Island’s popularity is its consistent sunny weather. In fact, it is considered to be the sunniest island in Croatia. It is also the longest island in the Adriatic boasting a length of 68 kilometers.

The bayside town of Hvar is the capital of the island, and biggest crowd drawer. This has something to do with its visual appeal. Hvar is a town filled with Gothic palaces and marble streets free of vehicle traffic. It is charmingly surrounded by 13th-century walls, which in turn, house a wide range of restaurants, shops and hotels. Travelers who stay in the town also gets to enjoy its vibrant nightlife scene.

While in Havr town, don’t forget to explore some of its most famous cultural, historical and architectural attractions, which include the Renaissance theatre, Cathedral of St. Stjepan and Trg Sveti Stjepana, which is one of the biggest squares in the Dalmatia region. While here, make sure to drop by the wide promenade that goes out to the shimmering blue sea and is just beside a lovely fishing harbor. This is one areas that is great to stroll around and experience. If you do have the time, don’t just spend it all in Hvar Town – try to visit some of the small villages that dot the coast and ones located in the lush inland portion of the island, and you will not regret the decision.

The oldest village on the island is the Stari Grad, which captivates visitors with its own charming medieval streets. This village’s history goes all the way back to 385 BC when it was known as a Greek colony. Stari Grad is also enclosed with grey stone fortifications and has notable attractions worth visiting as such as the Dominican monastery, the Church of St. Nicolas and the large fortified castle of Tvrdalj.

Jelsa and Vrboska are the other two prominent villages on the island. If you want to see where the grapes, figs, olives, lemons and grapes are grown, then make your way to the fertile plain of Velo Polje. Fields of lavender usually occupy the slopes of the hills. If you desire a great scuba diving experience, you can easily book a day trip to the offshore Pakleni Islands.

Hawaii Whale Watching

Plan Your Trip During Peak Months

Humpback Whales begin arriving in Hawaii in November and head back to Alaska in late May. If you have planned a Hawaii vacation during this time, you should have no problem spotting whales. However, peak Hawaii whale watching season occurs during February and March. So if you have not made your travel arrangements yet, shoot for these months.

Visit Islands Known For Whale Watching

Maui, Kauai and the Big Island are the most popular islands for Hawaii whale watching, so plan to visit one of these islands on your vacation. If you are visiting Oahu, you can see whales there too, they just won’t be as abundant.

Plan A Boat Tour

Hawaii whale watching tours are ideal for seeing these spectacular animals in their natural habitat. Not only will you be in the whale’s environment, but because humpback whales are curious about their surrounding, they will sometimes approach your boat. Plan a Hawaii boat tour to truly get the most out of your whale watching adventure.

Boat tours are available departing from Lahaina Harbor many times throughout the day during whale season. On the Big Island and the island of Kauai, whale-watching opportunities abound with a full schedule of tours provided by seasoned, knowledgeable guides.

Humpback whales may also be observed from land if you prefer solid ground to the deck of a boat. On Kauai the Kilauea Lighthouse, Kealia Lookout and various high-points of land in coastal areas are good places to start. Once you’re in the right place, spotting the whales is easy: just look for the majestic plumes of water (“blows”) rising in the air and the playful splashes made by these gigantic creatures.

Respect their space

In Hawaii, whale watching is an avid activity, and like with most outdoors activities, there are rules. Observers may not approach by vessel or by swimming within 100 yards of a whale (known as the 100-yard minimum rule). However, there is no rule that keeps whales from approaching people. Experienced leaders of Hawaii whale watching tours know how to gently approach these animals and encourage them to come closer.

Preserve the Humpback Whale

The humpback whale almost came to extinction in 1966 after mass commercial whaling during the early 20th century. Today there are approximately 30,000 to 40,000 humpbacks worldwide. Federal laws protect them, but there are things we can all do to help preserve this amazing animal for future whale watching generation.

  • Keep beaches and waters clean and debris-free
  • Participate only in responsible whale watching activities
  • Support efforts to stop illegal whaling
  • Support legislation, research and preservation programs
  • Patronize eco-friendly companies and organizations

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