Wednesday, September 22, 2010


If Rome is the Eternal City, it is also a city with no end of ruins. It's impossible to see all of the temples and monuments from previous empires, try as you might, so begin with the Pantheon, the Colosseum and St. Peter's Basilica and see how far you get. But for the true flavor of Rome, make time to linger over a glass of Chianti wine. Visit its fountains in the moonlight. These experiences are as much a part of the city as the Roman Forum.

Rome boasts one grand tourist attraction after another, but the Roman Forum and its neighbor, the Colosseum, stay with you forever. True, most of these ancient archways, temples and aqueducts are little more than ruins, but the grandeur that was ancient Rome never fails to humble modern visitors. A very different but no less popular era of history resides within the Vatican City. Walk through the cool, imposing sanctuary of St. Peter's Basilica before admiring the masterpieces of the Vatican Museum.

At the base of the Spanish Steps, Via Condotti is Rome's most fashionable address, and while it's possible to buy Gucci and Armani around the world, there's nothing like buying those exquisite handbags and suits in the city that originated them. For younger shoppers, Via Del Corso sells hip jeans and Italian soccer shirts near the Piazza del Popolo.

Ruins to see while visiting:

• Roman Forum (Rome): Two thousand years ago, most of the known world was directly affected by decisions made in the Roman Forum. What you'll see today is a pale, rubble-strewn version of the once-majestic site, and it's now surrounded by modern boulevards packed with cars.

• Palatine Hill (Rome): According to legend, the Palatine Hill was the site where Romulus and Remus (the orphaned infant twins who survived by being suckled by a she-wolf) eventually founded the city. One of the seven hills of ancient Rome, Il Palatino is enhanced by the Farnese Gardens (Orti Farnesiani), laid out in the 1500s on the site of Tiberius's palace.

• The Colosseum (Rome): Rome boasts only a handful of other ancient monuments that survive in such well-preserved condition. A massive amphitheater set incongruously amid a maze of modern traffic, the Colosseum was once the setting for gladiator combat, lion-feeding frenzies, and public entertainment whose cruelty was a noted characteristic of the Empire.

• Hadrian's Villa (Villa Adriana; near Tivoli): Hadrian's Villa slumbered in rural obscurity until the 1500s, when Renaissance popes ordered its excavation. Only then was the scale of this enormous and beautiful villa from A.D. 134 appreciated. Its builder, Hadrian, who had visited almost every part of his empire, wanted to incorporate the wonders of the world into one building site. He succeeded.

• Ostia Antica (near Rome): During the height of the Roman Empire, Ostia ("mouth" in Latin) was the harbor town set at the point where the Tiber flowed into the sea. As Rome declined, so did Ostia; by the early Middle Ages, the town had almost disappeared, its population decimated by malaria. In the early 1900s, archaeologists excavated the ruins of hundreds of buildings, many of which you can view.

• Fori Imperiali (Rome): Lining both sides of the Via dei Fori Imperiali are the Imperial Forums, launched by Julius Caesar in 54 B.C. that includes the Temple of Venus Genetrix, dedicated to the goddess of love from whom Caesar immodestly claimed descent. On the east side are the ruins of the forums constructed by the emperors Nerva, Augustus, and Trajan. On the west side, closer to the Colosseum, you can see marble maps, ordered made by Mussolini, charting the vast outreaches of the Roman Empire in its heyday.

• Termi di Caracalla (Rome): These baths lasted for three centuries until invading Goths destroyed the plumbing. They were ordered built by the Emperor Caracalla in A.D. 217. Back then, a noble Roman could spend the entire day at the baths, enjoying various pleasures including rubdowns with scented cloths. In its heyday, the baths also had art galleries, beautiful gardens, a big library, and even today's equivalent of a gym.

Whether you plan to visit Rome by land or sea, we can help you create your dream vacation. Give us a call today! 321-735-0202 or toll free 888-882-5793.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Baltic Cruising - The Land of Enchantment

Enjoy the multitude of enchanting fascinations that encompass the Baltic region of Europe. Whether you are looking for majestic landscapes,, the contrasts of ancient and modern culture, world-class gastronomy, outdoor activities, or simply want to experience life in another part of the world, you will find it all on a Northern European cruise.

The beautiful Baltic Sea extends from the British Isles to St. Petersburg, Russia and offers a number of distinct ports in England, Scotland, Denmark, Norway, Ireland, Lithuania, Russia, Estonia, Finland, Amsterdam, Holland, Germany and Sweden.

Discover an unseen variety of destinations, sights and adventures. The region’s exciting history, rich traditions and spectacular nature invites an extraordinary experience.

Explore the medieval as well as modern cities with vibrant nightlife. Encounter the amazing culture of the Vikings in an area rich in folklore and fairy tales. Let yourself be transported back in time to the land of the original oceangoing explorers.

Shore excursions typically visit fascinating museums, palaces, castles and cathedrals. The close proximity of the Baltic landmarks makes it easy to see a lot in a small amount of time. Be one of the few to transit the Kiel Canal or discover the majestic beauty of the Norwegian Fjords. Sail to the polar ice cap, get back to nature with a hike in the mountains, delve into Celtic history or discover a grand winter palace filled with Masterpieces. The options are endless on a Baltic cruise.

Several cruise lines will sail the Baltic this summer. The season typically runs from May through August and you will find a variety of cruise ships in the area. Norwegian Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean, MSC, Princess Cruises, and Holland America all sail the Baltic.

If you are looking for a deluxe or luxury ship sailing in the Baltic look no further than Azamara, Regent and Silversea.

Like brilliant pearls on a string lie the countries surrounding the Baltic Sea. In every port and in every city, there are countless precious gems just waiting for you to enjoy. Set sail on a Baltic cruise and begin a journey to the land of enchantment.

CruiseOne offers a variety of river cruises at exceptional prices along with excellent personal service. Contact Kathy and Eric Freer, your Local Independent Cruise Specialists at 321-735-0202 or toll free at 888-882-5793 or via the web at for more information.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Cruising to Europe

The beauty of a cruise to Europe is that you can experience the best of Europe in one fun-filled vacation. Enjoy the countless treasures of an ancient city and then return to the comfort of your stateroom. From your private balcony, begin your day with pastries and fresh fruit as another incredible city comes into view. Embark on a new journey in a different city each day of your vacation, without ever having to pack and unpack. You don’t have to worry about driving from city to city, getting lost and not being able to ask for directions. Your cruise ship takes you there, while you enjoy gourmet meals, world-class entertainment and luxurious accommodations. A cruise is the absolute best way to see Europe and now it is one of the best values on the market today!

By booking a European cruise you pay upfront in U.S. Dollars. This means skipping the exchange rates that come with a land vacation. Plus the Dollar is getting stronger against the Euro so you can really enjoy everything Europe has to offer ashore. You will also avoid the hassle of coordinating hotels, train travel and rental cars. Finally, you can dodge the stress that comes with navigating new destinations. We have all seen European Vacation. The never-ending roundabout is fun in the movies, but not in real life!

In addition to affordability, booking a European cruise is now more exciting with new products on the market. Many cruise lines are increasing their European sailings and adding incredible new ships, ports and amenities. There is no shortage of European cruises on the market today and cruising comes with an affordable, laid-back, stress-free guarantee. Just as us for details and you could be cruising in Europe before you know it!

Mediterranean Cruises

From the wonders of ancient Egypt, Italy, Greece and Turkey to the beautiful beaches of the Black Sea and the French Riviera, a Mediterranean cruise vacation has something for everyone.

Set your eyes upon the incredible pyramids of Egypt, maneuver the elaborate canals of Venice and be inspired by the Gothic cathedrals of Spain. The Mediterranean is more than a place you visit; it’s an experience that resides within you – one that you will revisit again and again.

To stand at the base of the Temple of Poseidon, the threshold of modern civilization is an awe-inspiring experience. And yet, much more awaits you beyond the hilltops of Athens. Walk in the footsteps of ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans and marvel at the accomplishments of Renaissance philosophers and artists. After you have taken in the history, be sure to indulge in the magnificent cuisine that has made this region famous.

Scandinavia and Russia Cruises

It’s truly exhilarating, cruising waters where Viking ships once sailed. A cruise on the Baltic Sea offers an ocean of adventures. Whether you are looking for spectacular nature, the contrasts of ancient and modern culture, world-class gastronomy, outdoor activities, or simply want to experience life in another part of the world, you will find it all on a Northern European cruise.

For centuries, it was the domain of rugged Vikings and regal Czars. Today, Scandinavia and Russia have some of the most spectacular sights Europe has to offer. A visit to this area of the world has a certain mystique that you will only understand by experiencing it firsthand.

Explore the modern cities of Stockholm and Helsinki, offering the perfect blend of historic sites and modern delights. Experience long hours of daylight while you discover the “midnight sun” in the land of kings and Czars. The region’s exciting history, rich traditions and spectacular nature invites an extraordinary experience.

CruiseOne is the only thing you’ll need to plan your next family cruise vacation; offering most major cruise lines, the very best direct prices along with excellent personal service, all at no additional cost to the traveler. Contact Kathy & Eric Freer, your Local Independent Cruise Specialists at (321) 735-0202 or toll free at (888)882-5793, or via the web at for more information.