Saturday snippets: 7th of July 2018

By | Category: Travel news

a cruise ship off Ocho Rios in Jamaica.

Yet again there was an increase in Britons going on cruise holidays last year.  According to CLIA UK and Ireland. (Cruise Lines International Association) 1,971,000 cruise passengers setting sail on an ocean cruise, an increase of 4.3%, against 2016. It still represents just under 11% of overseas package holidays so there seems still to be growth possibilities. CLIA thinks that the total for 2018 will surpass two million for the first time.  It says that the overall value of a cruise holiday became a more important factor to consumers in 2017, with price, value for money, and special offers cited as a key driver of choice.  Specifically, it says, the inclusive drinks package has become a significantly more important factor driving choice over the past two years.

Yesterday marked the beginning of Whitby’s three-day festival to mark the 250th anniversary of Captain Cook’s first voyage to the South Seas. Cook, a native of the town, is being celebrated with the opening of the Endeavour Experience, an attraction that uses a full-scale replica of Captain James Cook’s famous ship. Two tall ships are in the harbour; the Cook’s Kitchen will whip up a gourmet tribute to Captain Cook with 18th-century seafaring staples such as salt pork and rum and a treasure hunt will see treasure seekers dashing through the town’s streets.

one of the seven museums that make up the National Museums -Liverpool

National Museums Liverpool has achieved its highest annual visitor figure ever in 2017/18 across its eight venues. It saw 3,305,671 visitors in a year which also saw the opening of its China’s First Emperor and the Terracotta Warriors exhibition at World Museum.  With five months left to run, and tickets still available, the Terracotta Warriors exhibition is proving to be the most popular exhibition National Museums Liverpool has ever held with around half a million people expected to visit throughout the exhibition’s run. It was also a strong year at the Walker Art Gallery, where visits increased by 53%.

Turkey received nearly 11.5 million foreigners in the first five months of 2018, the Culture and Tourism Ministry has announced. This is up by 30.8% on a yearly basis and suggests that our love affair with Turkey has recommenced after a rocky couple of years. Most visited destination is Istanbul with  nearly 4.9 million in the five-month period.  The Mediterranean resort city Antalya came in second, with 2.64 million foreign visitors.

Sometimes you do wonder about how we are portrayed abroad by television and films. My wife was watching one of those dreadful US real life crime shows. It highlighted a crook who had fled to London from the US only to think he had been spotted by police. So he decamped and went for another hideout. In the words of the narrator, he went to “Yorkshire a small town north of London.” How on earth does Visit Britain manage to counter such geographical tosh?

image of Angkor Wat in Cambodia

Angkor Wat

Cambodia’s biggest tourist attraction, the Angkor Archaeological Park, received 858,580 visitors during the first three months of the year (up 12% over the same period last year) according to the tourism ministry. The Cambodian government has also cracked down on unauthorised service charges. Organisations will be fined if they add charges to bills which have not been first approved by the government. How can you tell if a service charge is genuine?  If there is no tourism certificate on display or if the charge exceeds 10%, chances are it isn’t authorised.

There is something about Salvador Dali that attracts Britons so a major new exhibition in Barcelona which opened might see many Brits diverting to a museum.  The exhibition, entitled ‘Gala Salvador Dalí. A Room of One’s Own in Púbol’ will show at the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya until October 14. It is aboit Dali’s wife, Gala a considerable artist in her own right. Before marrying Salvador Dalí she was the wife of poet Paul Eluard,  a model to Man Ray and enjoyed close friendships with figures including Max Ernst, René Char and René Crevel.   So important was she to Dali that he began to sign his pieces with both their names – ‘Gala-Salvador Dalí.

One of the most popular places to visit in Mallorca is the Formentor lighthouse.For this month and the next if you plan to visit it then be aware that the road that connects Formentor Beach and the lighthouse will be closed to cars between 9.30 and 19.00. Why?  It is a plan to reduce car use in line with the Balearic Islands sustainability objectives. A regular shuttle bus will be running from Port de Pollença to the lighthouse and the road will still be accessible to cyclists.

Following on from Natasha’s recent stories about Zimbabwe, the local newspaper, Chronicle, that  prices are too high and should come down to encourage more international and domestic tourism. In particular, the minister said that hotel prices and those for major attractions such as national parks and the Victoria Falls were expensive, particularly for locals. Interestingly she said that she encouraged the growth of lodges operating Airbnb type policies which see thought would drive down hotel prices. A government minister that supports Airbnb. Whatever next?

divers in the clear water off Malta

Malta presents some of the best diving opportunities in the world given that it has clear waters and has any number of caves, shipwrecks and reefs as you can from the image nest to this story.. The tourist authority has launched a new Diving Trail, the second in a series of themed ‘Trails.’ Visitors can use the map as an underwater guide during their time on the islands.

Australian indigenous art can command some high prices around the world as, since the 1950’s it has grown in stature but few of us can visit the artists themselves in the outback. If you are taking a winter (the Aussie winter that is) in the Queensland city of Cairns, then from the 13th-15th of this month there is the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair to sell and showcase works by Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists. Sixty-eight different exhibiting groups will be at the Cairns Cruise Liner terminal and events will also include storytelling and dancing

Finally, The Scotsman ran a headline on Wednesday saying “Tourist tax to be unveiled in Edinburgh ‘within 12 months.’” Before you begin budgeting for an extra tenner or whatever to stay in the city, reading the rest of the story suggests that the Scottish government might agree in a year. By the afternoon, its siter paper, Edinbugh Evening News, was reporting that he had been “slapped down” by Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish minister responsible for tourism as she had resorted to Twitter to say, ” So let’s be clear – you have no shared plans,no tourist business consultation and no agreement with the Scottish Gov.” Sounds like the tax is way off!

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,