Enjoy Dance Films 2011 in Paris

Paris is to screen a series of documentaries and recorded shows of some of the great personalities from the world of 20th century dance.

The Dance Films 2011 programme sees a feature being shown on the first Thursday of every month at 20:00 local time at the Centre Pompidou.

One of the anticipated highlights of the cycle will be an evening devoted to William Forsythe on May 5th.

Two productions involving the American dancer and choreographer will be screened.

Forsythe is credited with changing the ballet landscape with his ideas over the past 30 years.

A separate evening will see the life and works of Dominique Bagouet explored with a 1994 documentary.

It is not only western figures that are covered by the Dance Films 2011 cycle, as a study of Indian dancing is planned for two nights of the series.

Tickets range from €4 to €6 (£3.40 to £5.15). The next sessions will take place on March 3rd, April 7th, May 5th, June 2nd and July 7th.

If dance enthusiasts wish to book accommodation for their visit to the French capital, they can browse through a wide selection of boutique hotels in Pariswith Hotels-Paris.co.uk, including options in nearbySt Germain.

Visit www.centrepompidou.fr or call the venue on +33 1 4478 1233 for more information.

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The popular online car rental specialist provides the best value deals for MPV hire

One of the most expensive parts of a trip abroad is the transportation, and as people tighten their budgets some changes have to be made. However, Carrentals.co.uk, the leading car hire price comparator has the solution in the form of large vehicles.

Those who are planning a trip to one of the many exciting destinations in Europe will be able to pile into 7 seater car hire with friends or family and simply drive away to their destination of choice. Vehicles such as the VW Transporter or Chrysler Voyager are large enough to fit small groups of people as well as their luggage, and VW Transporter, Chrysler Voyager Carrentals.co.uk offers extremely reasonable rates.

Bigger groups can embark on the trip of a lifetime in one of Carrentals.co.uk’s luxurious 12 seater car hire vehicles. Booking a trip to Euro Disney and travelling their as part of a group is the perfect way to unite a family and make some memories, and there are always car hire bargains to be found on this vibrant website.

Gareth Robinson, who is the Managing Director of Carrentals.co.uk, was proud to announce recently that, “The latest trend among those who want to take a long holiday is to hire a large vehicle and travel as part of a group. This allows travellers to make huge savings on people carrier hire, which can be found at the touch of a button on out comprehensive website.”

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Royal Wedding Breaks from Newmarket

With the country mired in gloom and doom, the announcement of the Royal Wedding of the heir to the Throne Prince William and his long-time girlfriend Kate – now officially Catherine – Middleton, could not have been made at a better time, especially for legions of Royal enthusiasts the length and breadth of the UK.

The ‘feel-good factor’ and excitement surrounding the April 29th nuptials will no doubt build to a crescendo, with everyone (with the possible exception of the Bishop of Willesden) dusting off their Union flags and preparing for a day of celebration – helped by the fact that the occasion has been declared an additional ‘Royal Wedding’ Bank Holiday!

However good the street party and however comprehensive the television coverage of the event though, nothing will beat ‘being there’ in the capital on that spring Friday, with a place in The Mall or elsewhere on the ‘Royal Route’ from St Paul’s Cathedral to Buckingham Palace the most coveted spot of all.

Specialist tour operator Newmarket Holidays will be providing opportunities for Royal fans from across the UK to travel to London for the Event of the Year, with coach- and hotel-inclusive packages that also offer transfers into the city on Royal Wedding Eve and early on the morning of the Big Day!

If the clamour that surrounded the 1981 marriage of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer is repeated, London will see over 600,000 flag-waving Royal Wedding enthusiasts take to the streets, all hoping to catch a glimpse of the happy couple as they make their way back to the Palace and – who knows – a repeat of that famous ‘balcony kiss’.

Newmarket’s Royal Wedding Breaks, priced at £139.95, include coach travel from local pick-up points across the UK, two nights’ accommodation in a Greater London hotel and the all-important transfers into the centre of the capital for the chance to join in the celebrations.

With central London hotels booked out as soon as the announcement was made, these great value coach trips will be just the ticket for out-of-town Royal Wedding-goers, with an early start on the day of the ceremony giving a chance to seek out a good position to see the event, or simply to enjoy the carnival atmosphere of the capital – there’s nothing like a Royal Wedding Day to guarantee London is at its brilliant best. With big screens strategically placed to ensure that well-wishers miss none of the day’s highlights, and with street vendors and entertainers sure to add to the colourful scene, the celebrations will go on long after the Prince and his bride have retired from the public view.

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Paris Hosts Jacques Kerchace Voodoo Tribute

A Paris exhibition entitled Voodoo has been organised to pay tribute Jacques Kerchache, ten years after his death.

Kerchache was hugely interested in primitive arts and the collection going on display will feature a fascinating variety of objects of this kind.

The Fondation Cartier Pour L’Art Contemporain is hosting the installation from April 5th to September 25th 2011.

According to the venue, the secret world of voodoo was Kerchache’s “lifelong passion” and the show will bring together about 100 items that he collected over the course of his career.

“Through the Voodoo exhibition, the Fondation Cartier will thus pay homage to this great expert and explorer, known for his exacting eye, a connoisseur of both primitive and contemporary art,” explained the organisers.

To reach the complex by Metro, take Line 4 or 6 to Raspail or Denfert-Rochereau.

Admission costs €8.50 (£7.25) and the exhibition opens from Wednesday to Sunday between 11:00 and 20:00 local time. On Tuesday the display can be seen until 22:00. It is closed on Monday.

Art enthusiasts keen to find cheap hotels in Paris can use Hotels-Paris.co.uk to locate nearby accommodation in Montparnasse.

More information about the exhibition can be found at fondation.cartier.com or by calling the arts space on +33 1 4218 5650.

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As Airlines Begin To Cut Out The Middlemen, Internet Start Up TravelSpec Launches New Features That Give Choice Back To Consumers

Consumer groups have complained that travelers are receiving less choice as the airline sector experiences a major shakeup.

This criticism is a response to the recent news that American Airlines is removing its flights from the search results of some of the largest Online Travel Agencies (including Expedia and Orbitz) in the aim to reduce costs and sell tickets directly on their website. The trend is set to continue. After having been adopted by a number of the low cost airlines in recent years, the legacy carriers are looking to follow their lead.

As a result of this growing shift in the industry, Internet travel search and information site, TravelSpec, has launched tools that allow consumers to view all airline options, even if they do not appear in the Travel Agency price results.

Founded in 2009 by Rafi Neumann, TravelSpec is a meta-search site with a difference. It searches through hundreds of airline and travel sites to find the cheapest flights, and then informs the user if there are any other airline options that they can take. This ensures that consumers have access to all of the information that they requested. “We were sick of trying to find flights that we knew were out there but couldn’t find, TravelSpec is our answer to that problem” Explains Rafi.

TravelSpec’s new features take this even further. It suggests “alternative routes” to the user such as cheap flights to Miami. Among these suggestions is the ability to notify users (with almost 100% accuracy!) if there is a direct flight from a nearby departure or destination airport, or if a route is available on a different date. They can then compare the price of this flight, or go to the airline’s website.

If the user would like to search for routes alone, they can use the Interactive Route Finder Map. This enables the user to search which airlines fly to or from any airport, city, state, or country anywhere in the world.

These new features are all about serving the consumer every available result, and then giving them the tools to choose the best flight as an individual, “It is called the complete travel choice because it puts the consumer back in the driving seat of their search, they can make informed choices knowing that they have all the options available, whether it be flights to Miamiflights to New York or even Manila”.

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TravelFoodandDrink.com – Eating in 6 Countries in 24 Hours

Less than a day after attending the first European Culinary Tourism Conference in Vienna, Austria Steve Taylor the C.E.O. (Chief Eating Officer) of Boston based TravelFoodandDrink.com will be going on his own culinary tour.

His focus will be on eating a national dish, or local specialty in each of the six countries he travels through on the train, all within a time frame of less than 24 hours. This may not be so easy considering he has less than an hour in most of the countries where the train stops. Plus, the temperatures will be near freezing, there will be a language barrier, and he will be carrying his luggage at all times. His culinary tour will start in the pre-dawn hours in the darkness surrounding the train station in Brno, Czech Republic and end around midnight in Ljubljana, Slovenia where the most popular item on the menu at that time of night is a horseburger. Other stops include Bratislava, Slovakia; Vienna, Austria; Szombothely, Hungary; and Zagreb, Croatia.

Steve doesn’t recommend rushing through countries while on a culinary tour, and all of the countries he is visiting are worth spending time in, and discovering their regional foods and the people that produce them. He could have just stayed on the train and not even breathed the air in some of the countries, but decided instead to “taste” every country that he travels through. He also wants to create more of an awareness for an emerging trend in travel called culinary tourism. His website promotes culinary tourism, and encourages those who travel to seek out local specialties, and eat the national dish of the countries they visit. As Steve says “It’s a great way to preserve their heritage and learn more about the people and their traditions, plus you get to eat some great food with an amazing history”. Learn more about the national dishes and local specialties that Steve ate during his culinary tour once his tour is finished on March 5th.

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Edinburgh Hotel Wins Best Western Medium Hotel Of The Year Award

The Best Western Bruntsfield Hotel in Edinburgh is flying the flag for Scottish hotels having triumphed over fellow independent hotels from across the UK at the Best Western Hotel of the Year Awards 2011. The successful Edinburgh hotel claimed the title of Best Medium Hotel at the annual awards ceremony.

The continued pursuit of excellence by this 4 star hotel in Edinburgh was recognised and celebrated at a gala dinner held at the Don Carlos Resort in Marbella, Spain. The momentous occasion was the finale of the Best Western Annual Member’s Conference – the largest annual gathering of independent hoteliers in the UK. The Best Western Eglinton Arms in Glasgow also picked up an award for the Best Small Hotel at the event.

Over 350 Best Western hotel operators, executives, managers and their guests cheered Best Western Eglinton Arms’ General Manager, Carolyn Stark, and Best Western Bruntsfield Hotel’s General Manager, Garry Field as they went onstage to proudly collect their awards.

Garry Field said “A lot of people play an important role in running a successful hotel, from the room attendants to the general manager, and they have all contributed to securing the Best Medium Hotel award. I am grateful to them all for their continued hard work and commitment to quality and to being the best.”

Commenting on the awards, Keith Pope, Director of Best Western GB, said:“Congratulations to Best Western Eglinton Arms and Best Western Bruntsfield Hotel! Both teams embody the true qualities and vision of the Best Western brand. The hotels have their own individual personality and character, but their truly outstanding standards of quality and service are universally appreciated by customers and fellow hoteliers alike.”

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Explore the Work of Franz Xaver Messerschmidt in Paris

The artwork of Franz Xaver Messerschmidt is the focus of a new exhibition at Paris’s Louvre museum this spring.

Messerschmidt was an 18th century court sculptor who found fame thanks to his expressive “character heads”, according to the venue.

“Sculpted in metal and in alabaster, these heads convey the expressiveness of a master sculptor keen to depict the torments of the soul in all their extreme emotional variety,” added the installation’s organisers.

The Bavarian-born Austrian artist is said to have used his own facial expressions as inspiration for many pieces.

His work will be on show at the Louvre’s Richelieu Wing until April 25th.

Art enthusiasts do not need to pay any extra on top of the normal Louvre admission price of €10 (£8.40) to see the sculptures.

The exhibition can be viewed from 09:00 to 18:00 local time on Monday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. Opening hours on Wednesday and Friday are from 09:00 to 22:00, with the complex closed on Tuesday.

If visitors require a Paris hotel, they can use Hotels-Paris.co.uk to find a wide variety of accommodation in the capital, including the Hotel Wallace Paris and the Hotel Alyss Saphir Cambronne Eiffel Paris.

More information is available at www.louvre.fr or by calling the Louvre on +33 1 4020 5760.

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Paris Bercy to Stage Jamiroquai Show

Jamiroquai are due to play in Paris soon, with tracks from their latest record Rock Light Star Dust sure to entertain the audience.

They will perform at the Palais Omnisports Paris Bercy on March 23rd 2011.

The release of the group’s new album late last year is sure to have reignited many fans’ interest in their work.

Jay Kay has led the jazz-funk band since its inception in 1992 and scored several major hits in the 1990s with tracks such as Space Cowboy, Virtual Insanity and Cosmic Girl.

The audience is likely to hear plenty of Jamiraquai’s new material, including latest single White Knuckle Ride.

Lead singer Jay Kay is known to don peculiar headgear when on stage, with a buffalo hat worn during the early years of the group providing the inspiration for their distinctive logo.

Tickets start from €52 (£43.75) plus booking fees and the concert is due to kick off at 20:00 local time.

For a comprehensive list of hotels in Paris, fans can visit Hotels-Paris.co.uk, which recommends a variety of accommodation, including the Hotel Antin Trinite Paris and the Hotel De France Lyon Bastille.

Find out more at www.bercy.fr.

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3dbusinesstmexpo.com is Visited by Thousands of M.I.C.E. and Travel Planners Every Week!

3D Business Travel & Meetings Online M.I.C.E and travel tradeshow is visited by thousands of travel planners every month!

Launched in October 2010, 3D Business Travel & Meetings Expo introduces a new e-platform for today’s modern, green and time-conscious business travel & hotel professionals at www.3dbusinesstmexpo.com

3dbusinesstmexpo.com is Visited by Thousands of M.I.C.E. and Travel Planners Every Week!

3D Business Travel & Meetings Expo is an online tradeshow where global business travel, M.I.C.E and hotel services are geared towards an international, regional or local audience. 3D Business Travel & Meetings Expo also introduces fast, effective and affordable Hotel and Travel e-PR services for its online exhibitors with weekly e-newsletter distribution to its 64.346 opt-in database compiled from specific groups of travel buyers and interested global communities of meeting planners, incentive planners, in house M.I.C.E. buyers of corporations, independent travelers and online travel media in 65 countries.

In a hyper-competetive global M.I.C.E. and business travel community, no one wants to miss an opportunity to build that strong network with corporations, institutions, associations, local and international companies organizing educational seminars, meetings, conferences, business travel packages, incentive trips, and corporate events.

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National Triathlon Series & Oceania Cup in Wellington on 12 March 2011

Throughout the year, runners across New Zealand will test themselves and each other in the Contact Tri Series. DirectRooms.com is pleased to announce that on 12th March 2011 the seven race series will come to Wellington.

In Waitangi Park, the finale of the seven race National Triathlon Series & Oceania Cup will take place. As the last stop in the event, Wellington is of particular importance. The race doubles as the National Standard Distance Championships. On top of all that, it is also the Oceania Championships.

The race will include swimming, biking and running, all at challenging distances. However, there are a number of divisions and rankings in which to register, from teams to individuals to trophy and contact cup.

The triathlon is geared toward those who are looking to challenge their own boundaries. Not only will the challenge of the races be working to punish racers, but the elements may be a factor as well.

Event fees change depending on what each racer is looking for specifically. For 1:2:1, entry is $15. The 3:9:3 is currently $40 for individuals and $50 for teams. These rates will rise to $50 and $60, respectively, for regular entry and $60 and $70, respectively, for late entry.

Individual trophy runners will pay $90 early while teams will pay $100. The U19 is currently $70 and the Cup (for elite runners and U23) is $90. These rates will increase closer to the event, so it is advisable to register early.

Wellington hotels are already preparing for the abundance of runners they are likely to see, so booking a room as soon as possible is advised.

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The 16th Annual Twilight at Taronga Summer Concert Series 2011

DirectRooms.com invites music lovers to check out the 16th Annual Twilight at Taronga 2011 Summer Concert Series, which will be taking place all summer long between 22 January and 2 April 2011. The concerts will take place at the Taronga Zoo, and hotels in Sydney can place music lovers close to the fun.

Among the acts slated for this year are a Fleetwood Mac tribute band playing on the 25th and 26th March at 7:00 pm, James Morrison on 1st and 2nd April at 7:00 pm, and Caroline O’Connor on 11th and 12th February at 7:00 pm.

In addition to these concerts, the festival will also include several themed musical nights. One such night is 80s night. On 18th and 19th February Paul Gray and Erik Wideman will bring back hits from artists such as Culture Club, the B52s, Duran Duran, The Bangles and more.

On 29th January the series will feature Beatlemania night. Later, the concert series will pay tribute to The Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac on 5th March and 25th and 26th March, respectively.

Guests to the concert must enter through the main gate of the zoo. For $15 and a standard zoo entry ticket, attendees can see both the zoo itself and the concerts going on after dark.

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An 8% rise in Carrentals.co.uk bookings for long haul holidays is seen in February’s half term

Even with Air Passenger Duty and cutbacks from the Government, British travellers are still keen to get away during February’s half term. The report from leading car hire comparator Carrentals.co.uk found an % rise in long haul destination bookings.

The findings were a comparison from February 2010 half term to February 2011 half term, and showed an increase of British holidaymakers going further afield for a vacation. The most popular destinations include, Cape Town, Los Angeles, Auckland, Sydney and Jamaica.

Managing Director and spokesperson for Carrentals.co.uk, Gareth Robinson said: “The travel industry and has an interesting year and as a result the companies have been slashing prices and bringing in deals to entice more bookings and customers have been able to capitalise on them.

“People have been looking to get away this February for some winter sun, possibly due to the extreme temperatures and wintry conditions we have been experiencing in the past few months. With excellent deals available, people have been extending their stay and that has been the reason for the increase in bookings. There are still many holidaymakers jetting off to Portugal, southern Spain and the Canary Islands, but there has also been a steady increase in bookings in Mexico, South Africa, the USA and many more destinations further afield.”

Ski car hire is another popular booking during the February half term and Carrentals.co.uk has seen a 30% rise compared to 2010’s figures, in Munich, Salzburg and Geneva.

“For a wider choice of vehicle and the best deals around, it’s best to book a hire car early”, adds Mr Robinson. “If all of the cars are rented out in an airport, for example, then choose the downtown location as in most cases, there is less demand and more choice there.”

Prices for car hire for a week abroad over half term starts as little as £9* per day at Malaga Airport, from £12* per day at Cape Town Airport, from £19* per day at Salzburg Airport, £11* per day at Abu Dhabi Airport, and car hire at Orlando Airport starts from as just £13* per day.

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Attend International Conference on Computer Supported Education & E-Learning Technology in Kathmandu

On the 1st and 2nd of April 2011, the International Conference on Computer Supported Education and E- Learning Technology will bring together a wide range of academia to explore the many challenges and issues around technology and education, and how this topic can be improved by evolving and adapting to modern needs.

This year’s conference will not only look at improving and enhancing technology, it will also consider the implications of activating e-learning technology in a nation such as Nepal where access to technology is limited in remote areas. PremBahadur Nepali from the Open Learning Society is the General Chair of the conference. Prof. Dr.Prabhat K. Mahanti of the University of New Brunswick, Canada, is the head of the programme committee.

Registration is $600 per delegate and $480 per delegate for students. The registration fee includes admittance to the conference, snacks, lunch, and coffee as well as access to the welcome reception. An overview of the conference agenda will be included in the conference bags of all delegates. Delegates will also receive a participation certificate.

After the conference, delegates are invited to take part in a guided visit to see some of the top tourist sights in the area. On the itinerary will be the Biblical Garden of Eden and Pokhara. The Pokhara is a valley situated 832 metres above sea level and is a major holiday destination for international and domestic travellers. Kathmandu hotels will provide affordable accommodation for all delegates.

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British Airways Is Adding An Extra Day In The Sun In Mauritius

From November 1, flights back from the Indian Ocean isle will take off 12 hours later than at present, creating more time for relaxation before the journey home.

The better timing coincides with the route being switched from Heathrow to Gatwick, further strengthening the airline’s premium leisure programme at the airport.

Currently, flights to Mauritius leave London at 4:25pm, arriving in the destination at 07:25am the following day. Flights from Mauritius to London depart at 8.55am and arrive at 5.15pm. The changes will create evening departures for both the outbound and inbound flights to allow customers to maximise their time on holiday. Once the route moves to Gatwick, the flight will operate three times a week: departing Gatwick on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays, and departing Mauritius on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Flights to Mauritius (BA2063) will depart Gatwick at 8.30pm local time, arriving 12.25pm local time in Mauritius. Flights from Mauritius (BA2062) will depart Mauritius at 9.05pm arriving 5.20am the following day at Gatwick.

Silla Maizey, director of Gatwick, said: “We have a strong premium leisure strategy for Gatwick – we want it to be a hub for great high-end holiday destinations. Moving the Mauritius flight here helps us to strengthen this position as it will now sit alongside destinations such as the Maldives and the Caribbean.

“We’ve listened to feedback from our customers about the timings on the Mauritius flight so it’s great we’ve been able to design the new schedule around their needs. This new timing has an evening departure from Mauritius and an early morning arrival into Gatwick, giving back customers a full day at their destination when they would otherwise have been flying.

“Gatwick’s owners, GIP, are ploughing significant investment into the airport so customers can expect a new level of service there soon. The future for British Airways customers using Gatwick is very bright.”

The route will be served by a Boeing 777 aircraft with 275 seats on board.

British Airways offer holidays in Mauritius to suit families looking for a break in the sun to couples seeking to get away from it all on luxury holidays. Some of the hotels in Mauritius () on offer feature comfort and design whereas others specialize in full-service spas. Customers on a budget can choose to stay at the value for money two-star Coin de Mire. The family friendly four-star Preskil Beach Resort offers classical Creole architecture nestled in peaceful gardens. Tropical luxury taken to a higher level can be enjoyed at the five-star Prestige Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita which provides a secluded, beautiful sanctuary for the discerning traveller.

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Cruise Amour Unveils Network Of Local Cruise Advisors

Keen not to limit their exposure to only on-line channels, Cruise Amour made the decision in November 2010 to develop a network of local cruise advisors, each equipped to reach out to customers who are perhaps less comfortable booking on-line.

Despite tough economic times and the Christmas disruption, Cruise Amour has already recruited and trained four franchisees, with another three due to launch by the end of the month.

When asked if it had been difficult to recruit franchisees in an increasingly competitive market place, managing director Tim Hurrell said: “We’ve worked hard to ensure our franchise offering is truly unique and offers our franchisees a wealth of tools and resources that give them a strong competitive advantage. The rapid growth of our network is testament to this.”

Cruise Amour’s franchise packages start from £5,999 for the Home Worker option rising to £8,999 for the Local Business package which includes a local marketing exclusivity to the franchisee’s chosen geographic area. Franchisees can expect to make £25k – £85k net profit each year operating either on a part-time or full-time basis.

Hurrell continued: “The decision to start a national network of local cruise advisors was two fold. First and foremost we wanted to expand into off-line markets but we also recognised that we could reduce the load on our head office call centre by passing off-line enquiries to the network. This in turn ensures a regular supply of business to our franchisees helping them grow their business quickly whilst at the same time reducing their investment risk”.

Portsmouth South franchisee, Rosalind Jones added: “After evaluating the different franchises out there, I selected Cruise Amour as I was impressed with their professionalism and felt confident that the support they offer would help me get my business off to the best start possible. I found the initial training very helpful and am reassured to know that help is just a phone call away”.

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Experience Declaration Celebrations in Melaka

DirectRooms.com can announce that festivities will be taking place around Melaka as citizens and tourists alike join the colourful celebrations of the 7th anniversary of it being named a historical city.

Cultural celebrations fill the day as the city celebrates this important moment in its history. The Malaysian city was recently awarded World Heritage City status by UNESCO.

Events around the city commemorate the city’s historic and unique heritage. Colourful displays of costumes and dancing take place across many venues throughout Melaka. Traditional music fills the stages as spectators enjoy the vibrant showcase of Malaysian talent.

Traditional cuisine will be served around the city. Many of the dishes in Malaysia are exotic to palettes of tourists, and provide a tasteful insight into the culture of this beautiful and vibrant country.

The city of Melaka is rich in culture and heritage, all of which will be on display throughout the area on this historic holiday celebration.

Declaration Day in Melaka will take place on 14th April 2011.

Venues across the city will host events, some requiring visitors to pay a fee, while others will be free of charge.

Hotels Melaka make the perfect accommodation for everyone wishing to experience this historic day of commemoration, celebration, and heritage. There is accommodation available for all budgets and for all tastes.

All those interested in learning more about this special holiday are asked to contact the Department of National Heritage or the Tourism Melaka Office.

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Travelzest Launches Top 11 For 2011 Competition

Travelzest, the travel specialist, has announced the launch of its Top 11 for 2011 competition which will see one lucky winner receiving £1000 towards their next Travelzest holiday.

The Top 11 for 2011 list features what Travelzest thinks are the 11 perfect holiday experiences of 2011. The list encompasses a range of breaks that takes in the full range of luxury holiday experiences that Travelzest currently has to offer and was put together by Travelzest’s team of travel experts.

The full selection of holidays available on the Top 11 for 2011 list include exploring Turkey by hot air balloon and by municipal ferry, experiencing a delicious food and wine holiday in the Cote de Beaune in France, relaxing with a family holiday in a French country cottage, a four day gastronomic feast cruise along the River Saone in France, staying in a Miami-style beach house in Shoreham, exploring the island of Cuba, a trip through Marrakech via the desert, cruising along Turkey’s unspoilt coast, a ‘Nearly Naturist’ holiday in the Canaries, experiencing the Galungan Festival in Bali and seeing the wonders of nature in the Maliau Basin.

To enter the competition customers have to choose what they think is the perfect holiday experience from the aforementioned list. Customers can then enter the competition either through the Travelzest website or through Travelzest’s Facebook page.

The competition will run from the 8 February until the 31 March when one winner will be selected from all the entries in a prize draw. Full competition rules can be found on the Travelzest website.

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Cruise Amour Launches Expanded Online Information Section

Cruise Amour has announced the launch of its expanded online information and advice section, designed to provide additional information on a range of areas including cabin types, dress codes and more, in order to make booking a holiday easier and less confusing for the customer.

Historically customers who choose to book on-line do so without the benefit of a travel agent’s experience and advice. In many cases knowledge is assumed and customers are expected to know which cruise lines and ships are comparable, how formal they are and how onboard facilities stack up. Cruise Amour takes a different approach. Rather than leaving customers to their own devices (and potentially competitor’s websites), Cruise Amour has devised a unique approach to resolving this problem.

“Cruise holidays have become a real alternative to package holidays, opening up a huge market of potential customers,” explained Cruise Amour’s managing director, Tim Hurrell. “However, those customers face an extremely steep learning curve, one which can seem so daunting it can turn anyone other the most determined holiday makers away. Even seasoned cruisers can find switching cruise lines difficult as they may only be used to one particular brand. Our solution is simple. After first choosing a destination customers next naturally want to choose the type of holiday they want, then follows how formal the holiday is and finally the specific dates. Rather than expecting customers to figure out how each cruise line stacks up we simply let customers search using the criteria that makes sense to them.”

In addition to its innovative search system, Cruise Amour has also employed a completely new and revolutionary phraseology on its website.

Hurrell continued: “Feedback so far has been extremely positive and our New to Cruise bookings are up 50 percent”.

Cruise Amour has become known for its innovative and user focussed approach to selling cruise holidays on-line. Despite its youth, the company has established itself as an industry leader and, as such, receives significant support from the major cruise lines that serve the UK market.

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The National Trust Launches Drive To Get Britain Outdoors

The National Trust has announced a major shift in its focus as it aims to help more people enjoy to outdoors and get closer to nature by focusing on walking, cycling and camping.

The charity – often narrowly and wrongly associated only with country houses – will promote a range of activities that take place on the land it looks after, including walking, mountain biking, kayaking, surfing and camping, with over a thousand summer events aimed at helping children get closer to nature.

Fiona Reynolds, director-general of the National Trust, said: “For too long it’s felt that outdoor spaces have been the Trust’s best kept secret. We want to play our part in helping to reconnect the nation with outdoor spaces, whether in the Lake District or a local park.

“Over 100 years ago one of the Trust’s founders, Octavia Hill, argued that quiet, air and exercise, together with the sight of sky and growing things, were human needs common to all people.

“A growing body of research backs her intuition*, but over a century later we still don’t seem to value enough the physical and spiritual refreshment we get from our surroundings.”

The main outdoors activity for the National Trust in 2011 will be focused on walking. Working with local communities across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the charity will create 100 miles of new community walking routes as part of a major outdoor celebration planned for 22-30 October 2011.

It’s hoped that thousands of members of the public will be involved in helping design local routes, clear undergrowth and tread the walking routes for the first time. The outdoors celebration will also include mass participation events giving people the chance to explore autumn colours and will launch the Trust’s commitment to create a target 1,000 miles of new trails by 2020.

During 2011 there will also be a series of seven cycling challenge rides at Trust places from Pembrokeshire to Cambridgeshire. In July the Trust’s first ever cycling festival will take place at more than twenty places throughout the country including an evening community bike ride at Fountains Abbey in Yorkshire and a kids On Your Bike weekend at Scotney Castle in Kent.

Jo Burgon, Outdoors Programme Director at the National Trust said: “It’s clear that people simply love being outdoors surrounded by nature and walking is the easiest way to do that. We want to work with our local communities to help shape and create new walking routes on our land for people to explore and get closer to nature.”

The Trust currently has more than fifty campsites on its land – many run by tenant farmers – and plans for this year include creating a network of new, simple campsites in stunning locations. In Snowdonia the Trust has just launched green yurt holidays and will promote its thirty bunkhouses as great places to base walking weekends.

Via EPR Network
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