Saturday snippets: 12th July 2014

By | Category: Travel news
the new Acropolis museum

the not-so new Acropolis museum

As part of its fifth anniversary celebrations, the Acropolis Museum has begun an ambitious programme to use digital technologies to recreate ancient sculptures and marbles with original detail and colour. Now you can see horse riders of the ‘west frieze’ with 3-D digital images of copper weapons, bridles, and flowing blue capes scanned onto the ancient marble. The ‘new’ Acropolis Museum situated by the south-eastern slope of the Acropolis hill that Judith visited recently for us is just 280 meters from the Parthenon and is an archeaological museum displaying findings from the Acropolis site that date from the Greek Bronze Age, Roman and Byzantine eras. British visitors make up the largest proportion of foreign visitors – and over 170,000 Brits have gone through the turn-styles in the past five years.

From 26th- 27th July, the parish of Torteval in Guernsey will be taken over by scarecrows for the annual Torteval Scarecrow Festival. Hundreds of scarecrows will line the roads, fields and gardens of the stunning rural area and families are invited to follow the Scarecrow Trail through the country lanes, seeing the scarecrows. In the past these have ranged from Jesus and his disciples to a vicar, Michael Jackson, astronauts, groups of fishermen and whole choirs! The trail takes about an hour and a half to walk. Walkers are provided with guides so they can tick off the scarecrows as they go and see who has created each one

Visitors to Jakarta can the city’s major tourist sites, free -aboard one of five new double-decker tour buses introduced by the Jakarta City Government. Operating from 7am to 7pm daily, the air-conditioned buses loop around the city centre and take tourists within walking distance of major attractions, shopping malls and entertainment hot-spots. The hop-on buses can be boarded by domestic and international tourists from designated bus stops throughout the city. The government plans to roll out another 15 buses onto an expanded tour of the capital, enabling visitors to discover the Dutch colonial town of Kota Tua in the north as well as the highlights of the Blok M shopping quarter in south Jakarta. By the way, for those of you travelling to Bali, be aware that the passenger service tax rises to $20 from August 1st for international flights. All other Indonesian airports introduced the tax on April 1st.

Just in time for the festival season, a new Edinburgh movie map highlighting key locations seen in films such as Trainspotting, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and The Da Vinci Code has been launched to celebrate the city’s glittering history on the silver screen. A collaboration between Visit Scotland and Film Edinburgh, the map features 32 locations around the city which were used in 21 cinema releases.

Back to Croatia for a moment where another big festival takes place at the end of the month. The main event of Klaipėda city is the Sea Festival which is celebrated annually on the last week-end of July. Now in its eighty-first year, during the festival there are more than 100 various events which are organised including concerts, fairs, exhibitions, artistic actions and ceremonies of seamen. It is also famous for the traditional sailing regattas “Baltic Sail” and  the “Srint Cup” which will be taking place during the festival.  If you go, expect to be joined by about half-a-million others. It is that popular!

Guess who is in Madame Tussaud's?

Guess who is in Madame Tussaud’s?

Madame Tussauds London is operating with extended opening hours over Summer. It is also offering a late in the day online ticket deal offering 50% off walk-up ticket prices. Visit the world famous attraction after 6pm between July 4 and August 31 and get 50% off tickets. Adult tickets usually costing £30 on the day can be purchased for just £15 and children’s tickets now at only £12.90 but MUST be booked online before visiting. But there is a catch. It closes at 7pm so if you only think you’ll need an hour to look around, that’s fine. If not…

Ryanair will base one aircraft at Glasgow Airport and operate seven routes from Scotland’s from it starting in August. Ryanair will serve its two largest bases – London Stansted and Dublin – along with Derry/Londonderry, Riga, Warsaw, Modlin and Bydgoszcz.

Alitalia has launched 3 weekly direct flights to Catania and Palermo from London Gatwick in Sicily with the summer 2014 schedule.  In winter, there will be more frequencies from London to Turin: from 26 October there will be 2 more flights a week and from December further two flights will be added bringing the total to 12 flights a week.

Bahrain has followed a number of other countries in allowing you to obtain a visa when you arrive in the country. Starting in early 2015, visitors can now get a one month visa at Bahrain Airport, with the ability to renew for a further 3 months.

The Glasgow Science Centre tower is to reopen next Wednesday. Beset by building-connected the 127m tower , the tallest free=standing fully rotating tower in the world undergone more repairs since being closed yet again four years ago. A trip up to the 105-metre high viewing cabin will cost £4.95. The tower will remain open for the rest of Science Centre’s summer season before closing on 2 November for the winter.

Jet2.com has appealed the decision of the Court of Appeal in the Huzar v Jet2.com case. Previously judges ruled that a technical problem is not an extraordinary circumstance and passengers are entitled to compensation for long delays and cancellations caused by such issues. How long it will take the Supreme Court to hear this is anyone’s guess at the moment.

During WWI, Brighton’s Royal Pavilion was used as a military hospital for Indian soldiers. The theory being that the soldiers would feel comforted by the Indian inspired architecture. To mark the centenary, from today until January, there will a refreshed interpretation of the Indian Military Hospital display based on archive photographs and correspondence

As the beginning of the 100 year anniversary of the outbreak of WWI draws close, research from Visit Flanders and Westtoer, the tourism organisation for the province of West Flanders, shows huge growth in visitor numbers to the Flanders Fields area. The first five months of 2014 has seen an increase of 70% compared with the same period in 2013, with visitors from the United Kingdom making up 37.2% of the number. – 63.5% of visitors from Britain were school groups and individual visits made up 23.1% of the total, and 13.4% were group visits. British visitors were second only to Belgian visitors in terms of the most frequent visitors to the area.

Taipei in Taiwan

Taipei in Taiwan

The Taiwan Tourism Bureau has announced a nearly 50 per cent increase in UK visitors in the first five months of 2014, when compared to the same period in 2013. From January-May 2013 Taiwan received 16,560 tourists from the UK market, whilst January-May 2014 saw 24,485 visits from UK tourists, signifying an increase of nearly 48 per cent. Of these bout a third are thought to be holidaymakers.

A few transport notes to complete the column this week. If you catch a bus in London you won’t be able to use cash any more. Oyster cards are the answer. Both Eva Air and Aer Lingus now fly from Heathrow terminal 2.  Avianca, the Colombian national carrier has restarted direct flights to the capital, Bogatá from Heathrow as from the 3rd of July. In South Korea, the rail operator, Korail has begun an express service that directly links to Incheon International Airport, reducing the trouble of having to transfer in Seoul, to places like Busan, Daejeon and Gwangju.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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