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Monthly Archives: November 2012

Bhutan-vacation-globotoursFirst on our list is Bhutan, a small Eastern Himalayan country ranked in the top 10 of countries for the highest diversity of native species and wildlife. Buddhism plays a central role in Bhutanese culture. Men wear a Gho – knee length robe – and women wear a Kira – sheet like robe dress both can be very colorful and purchased as unique souvenirs. When traveling in Bhutan one of the most scenic destinations is the Paro Valley. It’s said that this valley resembles the Swizz alps, with high mountain snow peaks, low valleys of wheat and barley and a land gleaming silver with irrigation channels. Paro Valley is also where the famous Tiger’s Nest monastery is located. The prominent Himalayan Buddhist sacred site and temple complex is located high in the cliff-sides overlooking the valley below.  The transition from snow topped mountains to warm valleys is repeated all across Bhutan. Also not worth missing is the local unique cuisine. Bhutanese food can be very spicy and considered only for chilli aficionados but absolutely worth a mouthwatering meal or two.

Halong-Bay-globotoursSecond on our list is Vietnam the easternmost country on the Indochina Peninsula. Don’t be turned away by past happenings as this country is rich in culture, full of friendly people and offers a diverse and delicious cuisine. You will most likely arrive in Ho Chi Minh a city rich in French colonial architecture and wide boulevards filled with motorbikes and shops. You can also explore the more recent history of the country including the War Remnants Museum. Travel on to the Mekong Delta, where life revolves mostly around the Mekong river and many of the villages are only accessible by the rivers and canals. When in the delta enjoy a Cai Luong show, a form of Vietnamese folk opera. Another somewhat still hidden gem of Vietnam is Halong Bay. Touring Halong Bay showcases limestone landforms displaying spectacular pillars with a variety of coastal erosion features such as arches and caves which form a majestic awe inspiring scene. Although you may be familiar with Pho, Vietnam has many unique cuisine options including banh xeo a crispy crepe filled with pork, shrimp, and bean sprouts or the easy to-go Bánh mì or Vietnamese baguette sandwich that combines ingredients from its French roots with native Vietnamese ingredients such as cilantro, hot peppers, and sweet pickled carrots.

Old-Town-Manila-intramuros-globotoursNext on our list is Manila located on the eastern shore of Manila Bay, one of the best and natural harbors in the world. Manila is a vibrant metropolis with deep Spanish roots. Travel to Manila can offer a wonderful history and cultural experience especially Old Town Manila also known as the Old Walled city of Manila. The Spanish charm is unparallelled within the walls where you can tour stone palaces, colonial churches, eroded monasteries, Spanish fort ruins and fine courtyard houses. Once you’ve taken in the Spanish architecture its time to try the local cuisine. We recommend skipping the fine restaurants and trying some of the smaller eateries around town. Of course no stop in Manila is complete with out a shopping spree. Head over to the SM Mall of Asia or MOA. MOA is the 3rd largest shopping mall in Asia and the 4th largest shopping mall in the world.

Sigiriya-Sri-Lanka-globotoursIf you’re looking for an exotic vacation travel to Sri Lanka is perfect. Known simply in antiquity as “Serendipity,” this tropical island has attracted visitors for centuries with its natural beauty, rich culture and diverse wildlife. The island consists mostly of flat to rolling coastal plains with mountains towards the southern part. Stop at the Elephant Orphanage in Pinnawela which provides care and protection for many orphaned wild elephants that are found wandering in and near the forests nationwide. It’s also recognized as one of the best wild Elephant conservatories worldwide. Another wonderful site to visit is the impressive archeological fort site of Sigiriya. Rising like a red giant this site presents a unique look into the past of Sri Lanka with additional surrounding site of interest including gardens , pool complexes, moats and the iconic Ruins of the Lion located just at the mid-entrance to the site. Once you’ve explored Sri Lanka it’s time to eat! A must food is know as a Hopper. It’s an egg cocked over and inside a cup of coconut-batter pancake with a helping of onion red-sauce. Delicious. Don’t be afraid to try Sri Lankan food, a mouthwatering blend of curry concoctions and deep fried dishes.

Sarawak-vacation-globotoursLast but not least is Sarawak one of two Malaysian states on the island of Borneo. Once know for its formidable head-hunters traveling to Sarawak still offers the chance for a real-life Indiana Jones type vacation including longboat rides down murky rivers, hikes through lush green jungles filled with tropical sounds and birds, rustic smoky longhouses and fascinating folk dances of strange creatures. The beauty of Sarawak is in its unparalleled blend of tribal traditions and a beautiful natural jungle settings. After exploring the natural wonders of Sarawak and colorful culture its time to taste the local dishes. One tasteful snack is the Popiah, a type of fresh spring roll filled with vegetables, meats and local spices the Popiah is a popular street food in Malaysia. Try the Char kuay teow, a wonderful mix of stir-fried noodles with a choice of meat or seafood and flavored with dark soy sauce topped with an egg. Yum!

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Travelers may think that to enjoy a vacation they need to stay at a so-so hotel and save as much money as possible. But what if you could stay at a five-star hotel and still save. Below are our top five amazing getaway deals all with five-star hotels that are a traveler’s dream.

Banyan-Tree-in-Phuket-Thailand-GlobotoursThe Banyan Tree in Phuket Thailand
Situated near the beach in Thalang, this luxury hotel is close to the Laguna Phuket Golf Club, Bang Tao beach and Layan beach. In addition to five on-site mouthwatering restaurants, the Banyan Tree  features outdoor tennis courts and a full-service spa plus a poolside bar. Guestrooms include complimentary high-speed (wired) internet access and luxurious bathrooms with rainfall showerheads and double sinks, ideal for him and her. Beyond the hotel traveling in Phuket offers a sparkling night-life and a wide range of cultural experiences including the Phuket Fantasea Cultural Theme Park and Old Phuket Town. The Sino-Portuguese architecture and curiosity shops in the center of Phuket’s sleepy provincial capital also has several excellent restaurants set in a unique blend of colonial and Chinese architecture that makes for a fascinating and unforgettable afternoon.

Ritz-Carlton-Moscow-globotoursLux Vacation at the Ritz Carlton Moscow
The Ritz Carlton in Moscow is an impressive grand hotel with an ornate facade situated just moments from the Red Square. It has panoramic views from its rooftop that look across the square and to the Kremlin. Guests can enjoy a local favorite drink and lounge on the roof-top bar or spend a rejuvenating afternoon at the hotel’s full service spa with its treatments rooms, pool, steam rooms and saunas plus a beauty studio and fitness center. Guestrooms are traditionally decorated with polished cherry wood and feature marble bathrooms with designer toiletries, robes and minibars. Once you’re cozy in your comfortable room its time to explore. Beyond the marvels of Moscow including the Red Square, visiting the Cathedral of St. Basil and The Kremlin you can appreciate European fine art at the Pushkin Fine Arts Museum or take in a show at the Obraztsov Puppet Theater renowned for its uniqueness and deep Russian heritage. Escape to a winter wonderland, or a comfortable summer getaway plus stay at a Ritz Carlton for a well-rounded vacation.

Kowloon-Shangri-la-globotoursFar-East Getaway and Kowloon Shangri-la
This is probably our favorite vacation due to the unbelievable value and savings, but like most amazing opportunities this one wont last. The hotel overlooks the picturesque Victoria Harbour and is located within walking distance of many attractions including street markets, factory outlets, museums, entertainment centers, trains and ferries that enable travel around China. The hotel offers a wide variety of exercise equipment. The on-site health club includes an indoor pool, spa tub, solarium, sauna and massage services. Guestrooms are outfitted in European-influenced decor with Asian accents and feature floor-to-ceiling bay windows with city, harbor or garden views and all rooms have free high-speed Internet access. Once your ready to explore Hong Kong, you can enjoy exceptional shopping bargains just about anywhere you look. Alongside shopping one can enjoy an almost endless menu of local cuisine as well as fusion foods from trendy corner eateries to black-tie award winning restaurants. Hong Kong offers the chance for an extraordinary getaway including a glamorous nightlife,  modern museums, animated architecture and natural wonders, all capable of making this one of the best budget getaways that includes a stay at a five-star hotel.

ritz-carlton-singapore-globotoursSoutheast Asia Vacation and Ritz Carlton Singapore
Located in a garden setting within the Marina Bay business district the Ritz Carlton Millennia Hotel is steps from the Singapore Flyer and Marina Square and just opposite the Esplanade-Theatres, the city center for performing arts. The hotel has a Greco-Roman inspired pool surrounded by a lush tropical style garden. Guestrooms feature panoramic Marina Bay views or city skyline views and are equipped with walk-in closets and wireless Internet access. Discover Singapore just beyond your hotel with a stop at the Garden by the Bay with its three waterfront gardens that’s reachable by a short car ride or walk. You can also spend a day shopping the hi-tech bargains around town, take in the Night Safari park, stroll through the Art galleries at Tanjong Pagar Distripark, order a delicious Singapore Sling at the Long Bar in Raffles or enjoy any number of unique award-winning restaurants a vacation in Singapore has to offer.

Taj-Mahal-Palace-Resort-globotoursIndia Culture and Taj Mahal Palace Resort
Overlooking the Gateway of India monument with panoramic views of the bay, this five-star hotel was built in the grand Victorian style in 1903 and is the center for social life in Mumbai. The Taj Club offers exclusive access to the Club Lounge with tea service, cocktails and other special privileges. The fitness center has numerous equipment to keep guests refreshed and the Taj salon offers luxury salon services. The hotel also provides concierge services and can arrange activities around Mumbai. After taking in the history of the Taj Mahal Palace, you can set out to visit Mumbai’s numerous cultural sites including the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Museum the preeminent institution of ancient artifacts from India. You can book a Bollywood studio tour to get a close-up experience of the Bollywood film culture or shop for oddities at the Mahatma Crawford Market situated in a British style building completed in 1869. From unforgettable cuisine to an incredibly colorful culture, a luxury India vacation can offer the accomplished and novice traveler an unforgettable experience.