So you’ve just watched Mama Mia for the 42nd time and no it’s not because you’re a closet Abba fan, or a closet Pierce Brosnan fan for that matter. It’s simply because you love fantasizing about whiling away the hours on that enchanting Greek island paradise….with Pierce Brosnan. Well what’s stopping you from turning that fantasy into a reality especially when Greece is so hot right now? Go on, hop online, treat yourself to some new luggage from luggage direct and book your flights. We can’t promise Pierce will come to the party but there are heaps of other good reasons to get to Greece stat.

They need us

It’s no secret that the Greek economy is in trouble and when you consider that tourism makes up about 16% of Greece’s GDP, it’s more important than ever for us to keep visiting their exquisite country. So whatever you’re doing right now at home, stop. It can’t be half as important as letting Greece know that the world still loves and respects them.

You can get some serious value for money

Unfortunately for Greece, their current economic and political climate has resulted in less tourists. Due to the slump, the cost of travel has drastically reduced.  It now means that with a bit of research, you can really live it up on your holiday and with less people to share the awesome locations with, your trip will be an even more intimate experience. If you feel bad about taking advantage of their unfortunate predicament, don’t. What’s important is that you are supporting them right when they need it most so it really is a win-win.  Just be conscious about where your money is going. Use Greek companies wherever possible, eat at local restaurants and book trips directly with the provider and not international web sites.

History never repeats

Greece was one of the first countries to do numerous historically significant things, like hold an Olympic Games, introduce democracy, and most importantly encourage Hoola Hooping for weight loss. It makes sense to go and see where all this history took place, but you don’t want to leave it too late.

Some of Greece’s most important historical buildings may not be around forever. The ancient Acropolis of Athens for example has been impacted by acid rain over the years, which has devastated the building’s stability. There is now a real chance that as more pieces crack and fall off, the whole structure could collapse and we all know they won’t build another.

It’s a great time of year for Gyros

Well let’s face it, any time is good but right now sounds especially delightful.  Despite being home to the healthy Mediterranean diet, promoted by many health professionals as the ideal way to stack your plate, Greece is also home to the naughty-but-oh-so-nice Gyros. Pronounced yeerohs, its pita bread base is stuff with all sorts of delectable including melt-in-your-mouth slices of spiced meat which have been lovingly carved off a slow rotating spit and drizzled with garlic tzatziki. If you’re really lucky, it will be stuffed with crunchy golden fries! Follow that up with a traditional baklava for dessert and you’ve got yourself an authentic Greek flavour sensation that needs to be enjoyed pronto.

So it’s pretty obvious that now is the time to visit Greece. Have you been before? What are some of the best places to see on a Grecian adventure? Leave your suggestions in the comments below.

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Land vs Cruise: Which Would you Choose?

by Kelly on August 18, 2014

If you’ve never tried a cruise holiday, preferring to keep your feet on solid land, then maybe it’s time to try something new.

Cruises are becoming increasingly popular, and when once upon a time you couldn’t get a cruise for under a fortune, these days there are plentiful bargains to be had, and you even have the option of combining your sea break with a few days on land too, to make up a cruise and stay holiday.

There are many options for cruise holidays, be it the Norwegian fjords, the Far East, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, the Canaries … the list goes on, however, for some, the idea of seeing a lot in a short space of time isn’t desirable, with the preference to truly explore one particular destination to the full.

I guess it all comes down to personal preference.

Whichever type of holiday you decide on, there are extras to add onto your plans regardless. For example, how do you get to the airport generally? Do you book a coach or train? Or do you book a taxi? Whichever option you go with, you’ll probably find the cost high and the stress levels even higher. To combat this, why not look into driving yourself to the airport and parking up? I do this regularly now, with Cardiff Airport parking on my booking list as soon as I get my flight confirmed.

ParkBCP is a great place to head for the best of the budget busting deals available, with a service generally at most large and regional UK airports. As soon as you book your flight, I’d recommend sorting this part of your break out, and then you know how much money you have left to play with, and you can start to look forward to your holiday, regardless of whether you’re cruising, staying, or both.

I think one of the main perks of a cruise break is that you have your food and most of your drinks included in the cost of your holiday, which if you’re trying to budget and save money, means less stress whilst you’re away. All inclusive land breaks have the same perks, however I often find that the danger of an all inclusive break is that you find yourself staying put in your hotel, and never really getting out to explore. You don’t have this problem with cruising, because you’re seeing something new almost every day.

Cruising seems to be very much in vogue at the moment, however it’s still not everyone’s cup of tea. Maybe this is more of a need to try first, to combat those stereotypes.

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Enjoying the Outdoors in Austria

by Kelly on August 18, 2014

Austria offers plenty of rich history, culture, and fabulous food choices in it’s major cities, but people also need to get outdoors, because the country is too beautiful to just be see from outside of a window. Grab your water, your hiking boots or skies, and get yourself in the stunning outdoors of Austria.

Hiking

The scenery in Austria is breathtaking and the best way to see it is by getting those feet on the floor and hiking around. There are panoramic vistas of towering mountains, sparkling lakes in valleys, and flora and fauna all around you. The Schmittenhöhe and Maiskogel are two popular spots to hike up or you can take the cable car should you feel lazy that day. If you find yourself at “Gipfelwelt 3000″ on the Kitzsteinhorn glacier you can take on the challenge to get yourself to the summit which reaches over 3,000 meters altitude. Here you will have views of the famous Grossglockner and Austria’s highest mountain.

Biking

Biking is another great choice to see the beautiful surrounding of Austria and the Zell am See-Kaprun is a great path offering tons of different cycling paths. Some are short, some are cross-country, some are challenging, and some are up hill. There are many spots to take a break at with a hot cup of coffee waiting for you. If you are up for a greater challenge and really want your adrenaline going try mountain biking downhill. Take the cable car up to Maiskogel and make your way down. There are a few trails ranging in difficulty. If you aren’t the biking enthusiast that you wish to be, there are e-bikes to rent which are battery powered, which mean you can bike for kilometers on end with barely breaking a sweat.

Snow sports

Skiing and snowboarding are of course two exciting sports you can try while visiting Austria due to the amount of snowfall in the mountains. The Zell am See-Kaprun is the skiing and snowboarding area for the beginners and the pros alike. The Schmitten & Maiskogel are both said to be the best spots for families. Your ski holidays with Neilson will be a fantastic getaway from the bustling city life. There are plenty of opportunities to shred the snow if you know what you’re doing, but if you don’t, no need to fret, there are plenty of spots offering classes and the powder here can accommodate any experience level.

Water sports

Just because Austria is an inland country, doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities to get in the water! Zeller Lake is a crystal-clear spot that’s fantastic for swimming, paddling, boating, stand up paddle boarding, fishing, diving, kayaking and more! It won’t even feel like you’re up in the Alps when you take a nice dip in the heated pools that are around the area to warm up. Gorges, reservoir, and glaciers are all on display during different times of the year in the Zell am See-Kaprun region.

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Exploring Tenerife: Canary Islands

August 17, 2014

If you’ve never been to the Canary Islands, you’re missing out. Gorgeous beaches (black and white sand), friendly locals & lots of holiday fun await you, especially if you’re heading to Tenerife. It felt a bit like being back home in Hawaii, with jagged cliffs, green hills and gorgeous beaches. I figured that Tenerife would [...]

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Airline Know-How

August 14, 2014

A plane’s a plane, right? Well, in essence yes, but the level of service and slight differences occur between many different airlines, and it’s worthwhile knowing about some of them, to make your journey more comfortable. There are things that are out of everyone’s control when it comes to air travel, and delays do unfortunately [...]

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