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Wilson Travel & Cruise

Where in the World Have We Been Lately?


Janet Foster

India & Nepal

After a few Pandemic related delays, I made it to India and Nepal.  My primary interests were visiting the Taj Mahal and seeing tigers in the wild.  I traveled on a Tauck escorted tour itinerary of Northern India that gave me the bonus of several days in Nepal.  Wildlife safaris, a favorite of mine, were included in both countries.  Of course, there were also many interesting historical and cultural experiences, as well.  We even had a Mt Everest flightseeing trip and a lecture by a Sherpa guide. 

Traveling in that part of the world has its challenges and Tauck lived up to their reputation by making everything the best it could be.  If you have been hesitating, don’t!

Singapore and Indonesia

To finish up my list of “need to visit” countries in Southeast Asia, I spent two weeks on a tour of Singapore and Indonesia.  Staying in Singapore at the historic Raffles Hotel and ordering a (virgin) Singapore Sling was on my bucket list – so “Check!”  In Yogyakarta, Indonesia, we visited the famous temples of Borobudur and Prambanan Temples before moving on to Bali.  For me one highlight was staying on Flores Island and taking a day trip by boat to Rinca Island and Komodo National Park for a walking safari where we were within 20 feet of the rare, prehistoric looking, giant Komodo Dragons.  What an experience! 

Indonesia is a country of many islands, areas, and varying cultures.  There is something for everyone.  Consider putting it on your list of places to visit.


London and Paris Journey

I have been to these cities many times, but this time the trip was for my 2 grandchildren’s high school graduation gift. One wanted London and one wanted Paris. We flew into London first and stayed 4 days and 3 nights.  Sightseeing included Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace and Thames River cruise.  A ride on the London Eye soaring above the Thames on the highest observation wheel in Europe was awesome. We visited the Crown Jewels under armed guard in the Tower of London. These gems are a unique working collection of royal regalia and are still regularly used by the monarch for important national ceremonies. If, like my grandson, shopping is on your mind, go to Harrods. We shopped then ended our time in London with an awesome British tea. 

The second part of the trip began with taking the Eurostar train through the Eurotunnel to Paris, one of my favorite cities. It travels at a speed of 100 miles per hour in the tunnel and outside up to 186 miles per hour!  We stayed there for 4 days and 3 nights, again using the hop on/hop off buses.  Sightseeing included a panoramic drive featuring the famous Champs-Elysees, Arc de Triomphe and a Seine River cruise with views of the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral and an excursion to the magnificent Palace of Versailles.  The highlight for my granddaughter was visiting the Louvre with its world-famous artworks such as the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo.  Free time was spent relaxing in sidewalk cafes, browsing the world-class boutiques in various shopping areas and people watching.  To end the trip, we stopped at the Angelina teahouse for the “world-renowned” incredible thick hot chocolate with a piece of cake made of chestnut cream.  Now I see why the line was so long!  Many memories were made.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade in New York City

“And just like, that” my bucket list got shorter!  I have wanted to do this for a long time and If you don’t need to be home for the holidays, this trip is awesome.  Flew into New York the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and began the adventure. We stayed at a boutique hotel near Macy’s which was perfect.  We did a hop on/hop off bus tour around Manhattan which was the way to go.  We went to see where the balloons were inflated. The viewing area path winds around the American Museum of Natural History.  Awesome but be prepared for lots of walking.  We got up early Thanksgiving Day for the parade. It was packed but again so fun.  To get in the Christmas spirit that afternoon, we went to The Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes, an annual musical holiday stage show presented at Radio City Music Hall. The 90-minute spectacle features more than 140 performers. Of course, on Black Friday, we hit the stores for deals. That evening we went to Times Square for entertainment and on to see a theater show.  On the last day of our weekend, we ended at the magnificent Plaza Hotel in the Palm Court for holiday tea.  It is located right next to NBC studios and the famous ice rink in Rockefeller center.  A weekend to remember for sure!



I hosted a group to Greece this past year and if this is not on your bucket list it should be!  We had an 8-day Globus Vacations escorted tour starting in Athens and visiting areas such as Corinth, Mycenae, Epidaurus, Nauplia, Olympia, Patras, Delphi, Meteora and Thermopylae.  Then cruised the Greek Islands for four nights visiting Mykonos, Ephesus, Patmos, Rhodes, and Santorini.  We really saw almost all of Greece!

One of my favorite places was Meteora with the clifftop Monasteries, a marvelous sight to gaze at, truly stunning national treasures.  I could sit at the little café at the bottom and look up at them for hours.  I even found food that I liked and if you know me, I’m very picky when it comes to food!  Of course, the Acropolis of Athens was impressive, bigger than I thought it would be.  If you get a chance, make sure you spend the night in Athens at a hotel that has rooftop dinning overlooking the Acropolis - what a stunning view at night when all lit up!



Another island I can check off my list is Antigua.  I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get there but it was worth the wait!!!  In December, I spent 7 glorious nights at Sandal’s, an All-Inclusive Resort.  (I would suggest a bit longer as the flights are long with no non-stops from Chicago.)  It’s a Caribbean Paradise that was everything I had hoped for with powder white sand beaches, crystal clear sapphire water, and good music.  It is stress-free with friendly people who WANT you there and is one of the most CLEAN islands around.  I will be going back for sure!

Janet Thomas

April in Germany

I was invited to go on an educational trip to the Franconia/Bavaria region in Germany.  I had been to Germany before, but I had not had the chance to visit most of these cities.

We started the tour in Würzburg and toured the Würzburg Residence, a beautiful palace in the Baroque style.  Then we spent a day in Rotheburg ob der Tauber, a town on the Romantic Road.  With its cobblestone streets and half-timbered houses, I felt like I was stepping back in time in this medieval town.  You can even walk the city walls dating back to the 1100’s.  

We also visited Nuremburg and went to Documentation Center as well as the Memorium Nuremberg Trial Museum.  The next city on our itinerary was Regensburg where we stopped for lunch at the Historic Sausage Kitchen.  After this, we had a guided tour of Thurn & Taxis Palace.  Last, but not least, we visited Munich and after our city tour, we had a guided tour of Nymphenburg Palace.  We had free time to spend in this amazing city.

I truly enjoyed this country, its culture and the food.  I would go back in a heartbeat.


Ireland – The Emerald Isle

This September, I had the opportunity to go on a Globus Escorted Tour to Ireland – The Emerald Isles Tour.  This was a 10-day tour, Dublin to Dublin, visiting areas such as Galway, Limerick, Cliffs of Moher, Dingle Peninsula, Killarney, Ring of Kerry, Blarney and Waterford.

One of my favorite places was the Aran Islands. It is about a 40-minute ferry ride over to Inishmore, the largest of the 3 Aran Islands. We hiked up to Dun Aengus, a ring fort built more than 3,000 years ago.  There are spectacular views of the Atlantic once you get there.

If you have never been to Ireland, this is a trip that you should not miss.  I would also recommend Globus.  We had a wonderful and very knowledgeable tour guide, great accommodations, and wonderful food.  There was also plenty of free time to explore on your own.


European River Cruising

I sailed the Rhone river on the AMA Waterways Kristina from Avignon to Lyon cruising the Provence region in France. This is a great way to see an area of Europe, you only have to unpack once in your “floating hotel.”

You visit interesting small towns with options for daily touring in each port.  You can choose from hiking, biking, and walking tours. The hike to Mount Pipet in Vienne and the Van Gogh walking tour in Avignon were some of my favorites.

The food was excellent, showcasing what was available locally. There was also local entertainment in the evenings.  Warm summer evenings were very relaxing on deck.

I highly recommend you try a river cruise if you haven’t!  They sell out quickly so be sure to plan ahead.


Disney Cruising

In July I wandered to Florida to preview the newest Disney Ship, the Disney Wish. This ship has a Cinderella theme with a balcony where Cinderella and Prince Charming welcome you aboard. The decoration shows different elements from the movie Cinderella all over the ship.

The ship has a restaurant called the 1923. This has a roaring 20’s theme and is named for the year Walt Disney Studios was started. The Wish has something for everyone with the Marvel characters and the movies Frozen and the Little Mermaid highlighted.

This would make a great multi-generation vacation.  Give me a call!


All Inclusive Resort Review

In November I went to the Iberostar Grand Pariso all-inclusive resort in Riviera Maya, Mexico.

The resort was beautiful with a nice beach and sand with no seaweed. The weather was beautiful with very little humidity. The food was very good in all the restaurants and the service was excellent. There were plenty of chairs both on the beach and by the pool area. The entertainment was the best I’ve seen in a resort. The Magic show was professional and entertaining. The rooms are spacious with a sitting area and a nice balcony. Everything was top-notch with no disappointments!

The resort allows adults only and I would recommend it for a honeymoon or any special occasion.