Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What You Need to Know About Travel and Ebola

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  10:25 AM   warning No comments



Traveling can be scary—especially when there is a major health scare on everyone’s minds. The good news is that Ebola is difficult to catch, as The New York Times explains:

“Ebola spreads through direct contact with body fluids. If an infected person’s blood or vomit gets in another person’s eyes, nose or mouth, the virus may be transmitted. Although Ebola does not cause respiratory problems, a cough from a sick person could infect someone who has been sprayed with saliva. Because of that, being within three feet of a patient for a prolonged time without protective clothing is considered to be direct contact.

The virus can survive for several hours on surfaces, so any object contaminated with bodily fluids may spread the disease. According to the C.D.C., the virus can survive for a few hours on dry surfaces like doorknobs and countertops and can survive for several days in puddles or other collections of body fluid. Bleach solutions can kill it.

In the current outbreak, most new cases are occurring among people who have been taking care of sick relatives or who have prepared an infected body for burial. Health care workers are at high risk. Symptoms usually begin about eight to 10 days after exposure to the virus, but can appear as late as 21 days after exposure.”

Now that you know it’s not that easy to catch and you shouldn’t be paranoid when you travel, the five tips below should help you and everyone be prepared and minimize the risk and check the C.D.C.'s travel advisory and the Ebola Fact Sheet

Impact on International TravelConfirmed and suspected cases of EVD continue to be reported in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. There have also been a number of cases in Nigeria and a single case in both Senegal and the United States of America.  Cases of Ebola have also been identified in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), unrelated to the outbreak in West Africa.  In October, the first recorded case of EVD transmission outside Africa occurred in Spain.  This involved a nurse who had been treating an Ebola patient who had returned from West Africa. Travel restrictions have been imposed in a number of affected and neighbouring countries in West Africa and this will significantly impact departure options and freedom of movement.
Guinea has closed its borders with Sierra Leone, Liberia and Senegal. Health screening has been introduced at border crossings. Sierra Leone has closed land borders with Guinea and Liberia. Health screening has been introduced at border crossings. Liberia has closed the majority of its borders. Health screening has been introduced at the border crossings that remain open. Nigeria has introduced health screening measures for passengers arriving and departing at all airports in Nigeria. Senegal has closed the land border with Guinea. Sea and air borders are also closed to vessels and aircraft from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
5 ways to minimize your risk of catching Ebola while on the road:

  1. Use antibacterial wipes: When I travel, I’m almost borderline Howard-Hughes-insane about germs. I constantly wash my hands, use hand sanitizer, make a conscious effort not to stick my fingers in my mouth/eyes/nose, and wipe down plane seats and hotel rooms with antibacterial wipes. When I’ve been lazy, I’ve paid the price for it. Don’t make the same mistake.
  2. Don’t spread your germs: If you’re sick, don’t go out. No one wants to be around a sick person – especially during this Ebola outbreak. Did you see that yesterday an American Airlines flight made an emergency landing to offload a vomiting female passenger in Texas amid fears she has Ebola … despite not having been in Africa? So, do everyone a favor, including yourself, and STAY HOME! If you have to go to work or catch a flight, then wash your hands more than usual, use hand sanitizer and cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
  3. Wear a surgical mask: In Japan everyone wears a surgical mask when they’re sick. Why can’t we bring that tradition to America or, better yet, the rest of the world? Who cares if people think you look like a freak? As you can see from the photo above, I put on my mask recently not because I was sick but because the passenger next to me was and was coughing without covering his mouth. After I put on my mask and gave him my “crazy eyes” look, he got the hint. If you don’t want to look like a freak, get a Scough, which has a mask built in a scarf or just put a scarf around your mask or a get a designer mask.
  4. Travel insurance: Before you leave, check to see if your health insurance covers you during your travels (especially international). If not, buy travel insurance. It’s not expensive and provides great piece of mind. 
  5. Change your plane ticket: Unless you buy a refundable ticket (most people don’t, including me), it’s difficult to make changes to it without getting slapped with a fee (except with Southwest Airlines). I think airlines should make an exception for people who are sick because the metal tube just makes them sicker and spreads their germs to others. But for now they don’t, so we have to deal with it or figure out ways around it—and there are ways around it. Calling the airline won’t help (usually). The best way to change your ticket without a fee is to go to the airport and speak to an agent or their supervisor. I know it’s a pain but it often works. Just tell the agent you aren’t feeling well and would like to see if you can fly another time. More often than not they will help you do it.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Resort Wear and What Not To Wear

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  11:32 AM   what to wear to a resort No comments



All you need to know about what to wear and what not to wear.

What is "Casual Resort Wear"?

Is it casual? Is it formal? What kind of shoes can I wear? How long should my skirt be? While the exact rules may vary by specific resort or cruise, simply imagine that you are going to a country club with your grandmother.
Country clubs naturally conjure up visions of polo shirts, khaki pants and loafers, and these items are 100 percent appropriate for resort casual wear. Collared shirts are a must, whether polo shirts or button-downs. Although there is little limitation in terms of color or pattern, use your judgment and avoid oversized logos or text. Although khakis or linen pants are a nature resort casual choice for day wear, slacks are a smart choice for dinners and other evening events. Avoid sandals and other shoes that shoe more bare foot than a loafer or boat shoe would.
Determining what is and what is not appropriate resort casual wear for woman can actually be a more difficult endeavor. The basic tenets are fuzzier, consisting of more guidelines than rules. Women can, of course, wear khakis, linen pants, slacks and collared shirts like their male counterparts, but they are typically expected to wear dresses or skirts in situations that call for resort casual apparel. Classy, knee-length summer dresses and skirts are always a good way to go. Aim for crew neck or boat neck necklines and wide straps.
The "casual" in resort casual may seem formal or relaxed, depending on who you are speaking with. For a student, resort casual is essentially a type of formal dress, required nice, pressed garments not typically worn every day. Jeans are not typically appropriate, although expensive, on-trend pairs may be acceptable in certain fashion-forward settings. Women should exercise discretion in their hem and necklines, erring on the reserved side. If you are looking to spice up this seemingly bland type of attire, look to the runway resort or cruise lines. Many prominent designers from America and Europe show new looks each year.
These are some new upscale resort wear looks we love.  Some pieces for your next luxury cruise or just weekend trip to Mexico. 

Looking for a bikini? We got you covered:
bikini.com








Roberto Cavalli

Sleeveless Alize Print Gown









Explore resort wear on Pinterest while you are at it. 


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Tips for Thanksgiving Travel

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  5:16 PM   vacation No comments
Charlie Brown and Snoopy celebrate Thanksgiving, but remember that if you travel internationally then they won't be serving turkey dinner.

Pumpkins and Halloween decorations are suddenly everywhere, and that means that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, so it is time to start booking your travel plans if you haven’t already.

Trying to make sense of airfare fluctuations and fare rules is a tough game to play, especially around the holidays, and Thanksgiving is usually the most expensive time.  

Once again, September into mid-October looks to be the deadline for getting a good deal locked in, so start looking now yourself, or email us for help! 

As expected, fares increase drastically in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, which is on Thursday, November 27th this year. The cheapest times to book airfare for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve travel were found to be from September to mid-October, and airfares for Thanksgiving increased up to 17% after that time (and 51% for Christmas and 25% for New Year’s Eve).

So while it is not too late to get a great price, the clock is ticking and you need to act fast and be flexible. Traditionally, the busiest – and therefore most expensive – days are the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day and the Sunday after, so avoid flying then if possible.

Of course, when you travel – not just when you book – greatly affects flight prices. The best day to depart if you are flying domestically is the Monday before Thanksgiving when prices are 15-23% below average. Then try to either have a shorter trip or a longer one, returning on Friday or the following Monday, after the rush. By being flexible, you can save up to 20% on your airfare!

With Thanksgiving being such an American holiday, global travel is not as common, but many people do want to take advantage of the four-day weekend and go abroad. The fare patterns differ to domestic in that when booking in July through September they remained low, then rose steadily from mid-September all the way up to the week before the Thanksgiving holiday.

If you are flying internationally, try leaving close to or on Thanksgiving Day and stay through the weekend to save on airfare.

Remember that while Americans can’t imagine life without it, Thanksgiving isn’t celebrated around the world, so don’t land in London or Paris and expect to be able to get a turkey dinner and pumpkin pie there – it is just a regular Thursday for them!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Trip Itinerary Idea : Prague to London in 7 Days

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  7:19 PM   vacation No comments

7 Days, Prague to London

 

 

Visit 4 countries: Czech Republic, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium

Begin in medieval Prague in Czech Republic, tour Dresden and Berlin in Germany, party in Amsterdam in Netherlands and sip Belgian hot chocolate in Brugge.

Itinerary


  • Day 1: Prague

    Begin in Prague, the beautiful capital of Czech Republic. A walking tour can take you to the memorable Charles Bridge, Hradcany Castle, the Tyn Church and Wenceslas Square. Then, perhaps we can check out why Prague’s nightlife is so famous! 

  • Day 2: Prague

    Explore this Gothic city full of dramatic spires, cobbled alleys, rumbling trams, hand-made puppets and artists around Charles Bridge. Stroll through the Jewish Quarter, visit Old Town Square and the medieval Town Hall, and perhaps find an old traditional inn to try the excellent (and cheap) local beer. 
  • Day 3: Berlin

    Stop in 800 year old Dresden in Germany, a city which has heroically rebuilt itself following near-destruction during World War II. After seeing the symbolic Frauenkirche and other beautiful buildings, continue on to Berlin, Germany’s vibrant capital. A driving tour can take you to the remains of the Berlin Wall, the Brandenburg Gate, Reichstag building, Holocaust Memorial, Checkpoint Charlie and more impressive landmarks. 
  • Day 4: Berlin

    Berlin is yours to discover today. You can hear about the rise and fall of the Nazis on an optional ‘Third Reich’ walking tour in the morning, which takes in sites of historical significance including the spot where Hitler had his bunker. Other attractions include world class museums such as the German History Museum and the Pergamon Museum, the massive Berlin Zoo, and a myriad of cool shops, cafés and bars. At night you can take an optional Nightlife tour and check out some of Berlin’s coolest nightspots! 
  • Day 5: Amsterdam

    It's a fairly long drive to the Netherlands, which gives you a chance to conserve your energy for Amsterdam! The 'Dam is a city of contrasts where bicycles, clogs, tulips and the infamous Red Light District live side by side in harmony. Just outside the city, stop at a traditional farm to see how Dutch cheese and clogs (wooden shoes) are made. After checking in to your hotel, head into the heart of Amsterdam to see Dam Square or even investigate the Red Light District itself! 
  • Day 6: Amsterdam

    Take a full day to enjoy Amsterdam. A bike ride is the perfect way to tour the city, just like the locals. Wander the canals or visit attractions such as Anne Frank House, the Van Gogh Museum and the Heineken Experience. In the evening, look forward to dinner in a local restaurant, followed by a canal cruise on a private boat along Amsterdam’s waterways. 
  • Day 7: London

    Make your way to the Belgian city of Brugge in the morning, where a walking tour will take in the city’s excellent Gothic architecture. We’ll have free time here to seek out some Belgian specialities – chocolate, waffles and beer! Afterwards, drive to Calais in France to catch a ferry across the English Channel. 
    Go HERE for train times and tickets in and around the cities. 

    While in Berlin:

    Grunewald is Berlin’s largest forested area, to the south-west of Charlottenburg and easily accessible via S-bahn. Pack a picnic and head down here for a day of tranquil respite from the bustle of the city. Venture through the woods by foot, bicycle or on horseback and, if weather permits, take a dip in the clean waters of Schlachtensee or Wannsee, the nearest of the forest’s several freshwater lakes. Look out for Teufelsberg, a man-made hill rising above the woodland, constructed by the Allies after World War II from the city’s rubble. Although there’s no general access to the hill, you can get to the top of the hill by going on a guided tour: English tours start at 1.30pm on Sundays.



    Posing for four shots in Berlin’s Photoautomaten is an almost obligatory activity. These black and white photo booths are open all hours and scattered across the city. The photos only take a few minutes to print and provide a brilliant souvenir of your time in the city. Draw back the curtain and pose for posterity or cram in your friends for a fun set of snaps.




    A shopping tour of Berlin covers a lot of ground. North Mitte has recently risen as a key shopping district, counting scores of boutiques and independent retailers around Torstraße and Mulackstraße (view our shopping guide: Berlin's 20 best stores). Those in search of vintage clothing should venture further north to Prenzlauer Berg, to the areas many small and well-selected shops. Alternatively you can pay for the contents of your basket according to weight in a number of outlets: head westwards to Garage at Nollendorf Platz, or to the vast and musty Colours Kleidermarkt on Bergmannstraße. For oodles of vintage at bargain prices, the Humana chain of second hand stores is one to note, of which a big outlet is in Alexanderplatz. Friedrichstraße is the street for big name designer stores as well as KaDeWe, Europe's largest department store, which offers a fantastic range for those with a larger budget.



    The Olympiastadion exemplifies fascist taste in architecture. This arcaded classical oval of pale Franconian stone is simple but grandiose and on an epic scale. Its greatest claim to fame however came during the 1936 Olympics, which had been intended by the National Socialist government to be a showcase for Aryan triumph. Instead the stadium was the spot where black American athlete Jesse Owens won four gold medals, emphatically disproving Hitler’s ideas about racial superiority in front of the world’s media. The original design survived World War II bombs and demolition threats, before undergoing a major refit for the 2006 World Cup: now a hovering disc leaves the central structure open to the sky.


     While in Amsterdam:



    When you think of Amsterdam, images like clogs, tulips, cheese and windmills spring to mind. But beyond the clichés lie unique sights. Just outside the city, there's the Zaanse Schans museum, detailing the history and symbolism of the clog, and other tradtional crafts. The most famous place to buy tulips is the Bloemenmarkt, along the Singel, and you can find flavourful cheeses at the smart Reypenaer tasting room. Meanwhile, eight windmills remain in Amsterdam, the most famous of which is De Gooyer. It's a great place to sip a beer, as it's right next to the award-winning artisan brewery Brouwerij 't IJ.


    Criss-crossed by bridges, 165 canals encircle the city of Amsterdam and keep the sea at bay. The waterways provide an attractive border to the arty locales of the Museum Quarter, the Jordaan and the Pijp. Within the pockets of land that their eclectic network creates, you can find shops, galleries and authentic cafés. The most picturesque of canals is Prinsengracht, lined by shady trees and funky houseboats. As you wander up to this area, you'll find the tall spire of the Westerkerk and the modest Anne Frank Huis. Smaller canal areas that are worth visiting include the historic Brouwersgracht, one of the city's most desirable residential addresses.
    Herring stall, Herengracht, Amsterdam

    You simply must try raw herring. We don't want to hear any excuses. The best time to try one is between May and July when the new catch hits the stands, because this doesn't require any extra garnish such as onions and pickles, since the fish's flesh is at its sweetest. There's a quality fish stall or store around most corners. There are stalls all over town, but the best places to buy a herring include the family-run Stubbe's Haring on the Singel Haarlingersluis near Centraal Station. This fish is a bargain snack and makes for an authentic Dutch eating experience.


    Amsterdam's Red Light District has cultivated a notorious reputation on the international stage. But when you visit, you'll discover that the reality is a bit different. It's like a small, cutesy version of Las Vegas, with cheesy sex shops selling blow-ups, massive dildos and other outrageous toys. Situated in a rough triangle formed by the Central Station, it's the oldest part of the city. But its historical significance has been largely obscured by the popularity of window-shopping in the area. Along its streets, the multi-cultural community of prostitutes, junkies, clerics, carpenters and cops freely intermingle, exhibiting a strange kind of social cosiness. As a tourist, of course, you'll be a mere voyeur.



    At the Begijnhof, a secluded garden and courtyard offers a hidden sanctuary where traffic sounds dim and the bustle of the city fades into the distance. Established as a 14th-century convent, it formerly housed the religious and liberated sisterhood of the Beguines. In the centre of the courtyard stands the Engelse Kerk, the principal place of worship for the local English community. It's worth stepping inside to take a good look at the pulpit panels, designed by Mondrian. Although it's popular with tourists, noise levels never rise above a whisper.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

UPDATED: Excellence Group Press Release #2 - Finest Resorts

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  5:21 PM   vacation No comments
On September 26th, 2014 they released on Twitter that the new opening date will be February 12, 2015!



See below today's press release from Excellence Group about the opening of Finest Resorts, March 1st, 2015.




Thursday, September 4, 2014

Drinking Customs Around The World

By LetThere BeTravel   Posted at  9:53 AM   wine No comments


Before you clink glasses with your new friends while traveling, you might want to take a minute and learn about their drinking customs. Just as every country's cuisine is different, so, too, is how they drink their booze.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Best Fall Trips in the US : 2014

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  1:08 PM   winter No comments
These are some travel ideas in the U.S. that might be just perfect for a fall getaway.


Enchanted Circle Scenic Drive, Taos, New Mexico

From late September through early October, north-central New Mexico’s Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway is a best-of-fall highlight reel. For those beginning and ending the drive in Taos (basically circling the state’s highest point, 13,162-foot Wheeler Peak), the 83-mile loop offers spectacular natural features: golden-hued aspens, thick evergreen forests, and abundant wildlife, including Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep. “An early snow can make the spectacle even more amazing,” says Fritz Davis, a local musician and editor of the Red River Miner. “The fall palette of red, orange, and gold beneath distant snowy peaks and around the high mountain lake is breathtaking.” It’s possible to make the drive in a couple of hours, but Davis recommends taking time to explore side roads. One of his favorites is the Route 578 fork off Main Street (Highway 38) in Red River, where the vibrant aspen leaves take on a butterfly shape each fall. “You’ll see either a single butterfly with wings spread wide or, if you’re romantically inclined, two butterflies kissing,” says Davis.
How to Get Around: Begin in Taos and drive clockwise around the loop. From downtown Taos, head north on NM 64/68 to NM 522. Continue north on NM 522 for about 24 miles to Questa and turn right (east) on NM 38. Continue east and then south on NM 38 about 30 miles to Eagle’s Nest. Here, you’ll rejoin NM 64 to complete the circle back to Taos.
Where to Stay: The recently renovated Palacio de Marquesa (formerly Casa de las Chimeneas) is a romantic, pueblo-style retreat. Surrounded by cottonwood trees in a quiet neighborhood, the 1912 adobe estate is within easy walking distance (about ten minutes) of shops, restaurants, and galleries at Taos Plaza. The inn’s eight guest rooms (two of which are suites) are individually appointed to reflect the spirit of a legendary Taos woman artist such as Georgia O’Keeffe and Millicent Rogers. Each room has a fireplace and courtyard access, some have beamed ceilings and skylights, and all include complimentary breakfast, which can be delivered directly to your door.
Where to Eat: At family-owned Hatcha’s Grill of Angel Fire, order an authentic New Mexican dish such as sopaipillas (fried pastries) stuffed with carne adovada (cubed pork in red chile sauce) or a steak and papitas (fried potato) burrito. Eat like a local by asking for it “smothered with Xmas.” Christmas, or Xmas, is a spicy, red-green New Mexico concoction made by blending mild (red) and hot (green) chile sauces.
What to Buy: Find genuine turquoise and sterling silver pendants, rings, cuff bracelets, earrings, and other pieces designed by Native American and other New Mexico artists at the Jewelry Lady Red River in Frye’s Old Town.
Helpful Tip: Take it slow and stay alert for changing weather conditions and wildlife on or near the road. Before making the drive, check the weather forecast for the entire route and plan accordingly. Curves on the two-lane route can become slick in wet or snowy conditions, and some sections of the road have little or no shoulders.
Fun Fact: One must-see Enchanted Circle detour is the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, located 12 miles northwest of Taos on U.S. 64 (8 miles west of the NM 522 and NM 150 junction). Completed in 1965 and restored in 2012, the steel bridge is the second highest suspension bridge in the U.S., towering 650 feet above the Rio Grande River. For the most dramatic gorge views, park in the lot at the west end of the bridge and walk (staying on the walkways) out to the center.

USA’s Largest Oktoberfest Celebration

Follow the lederhosen-clad locals to Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, the largest festival of its kind in the United States. First staged as a block party in 1976, the free, family-friendly event now attracts more than 500,000 people and celebrates the city’s deep German roots (German immigrants built Cincinnati’s Over-the‐Rhine, or OTR, neighborhood in the 1800s). “Oktoberfest here is like being in 20 beer gardens,” says veteran restaurateur Mick Noll, who’s cooked his German specialties (bratwurst, potato pancakes, Bavarian smoked skinless sausage) at every Oktoberfest Zinzinnati. “Grab a beer, share a table with someone you’ve never met, and get into the spirit. There’s nothing like it outside of Munich.” Beyond the beer (the equivalent of some 18,000 12-packs are consumed each year), there’s continuous live German music, the “World’s Largest” Chicken Dance, and boisterous competitions, including stein hoisting, beer barrel rolling, and the Running of the Wieners.
How to Get Around: Cincinnati is located in southwestern Ohio at the junction of I-75, I-74, and I-71, about a hundred miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky. The greater Cincinnati area extends south across the Ohio River to northern Kentucky, where the airport is located. Take the TANK (Transportation Authority of Northern Kentucky) public bus (operates 5 a.m. to midnight) from the airport to downtown, where the festival is staged on six blocks of Fifth Street, from Vine Street to Sentinel.
Where to Stay: Located in the 983-building OTR National Historic District, the city’s original German enclave, the Symphony Hotel is a restored 1871 mansion with nine rooms, each named for different composers. The third-floor Beethoven and Shubert rooms have the only shared bath. An on-site gourmet restaurant is open Friday and Saturday evenings (five-course prix-fixe menu) and Sundays for brunch. Reservations suggested. The hotel is next door to the 1878 Music Hall, home of the Cincinnati Symphony (and included on the National Trust for Historic Preservation's June 2014 list of 11 most endangered historic places).
Where to Eat: Meet Mick Noll at his Covington Haus Oktoberfest booth to try a Cincinnati German-American specialty: goetta (“get-uh”). The breakfast sausage is made from a slow-cooked blend of pork, beef, onions, spices, and steel-cut oats. Noll’s all-meat version is goetta balls, which he describes as “meatball in shape but like nothing you’ve ever tasted.” While not traditionally German, another Cincinnati culinary classic is a beanless, sauce-like ground beef chili (try Price Hill Chili in Cincinnati and Dixie Chili & Deli in northern Kentucky). Variations exist, but the traditional chili parlor menu has six options: bowl (plain), two-way (plain over spaghetti), three-way (two-way plus cheese), four-way (three-way plus onion), four-way beans (three-way plus beans), and five-way (four-way beans plus onion).
What to Buy: During festival weekend, visit historic Findlay Market in OTR (about a half-mile walk from the Symphony Hotel). Opened in 1855, Findlay is Ohio’s oldest surviving city market house and the longest continuously operating public market in Cincinnati. Visit more than 80 permanent and weekend vendors, plus the additional open market and farm shed booths, to shop for teas, herbs, and spices; fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, and meats; imported and domestic cheeses and wines; and local baked goods. Through mid-October, there’s also an on-site beer garden hosted by the local Christian Moerlein Brewing Companyand the OTR Brewery District.
Helpful Tip: Download the free Oktoberfest Zinzinnati app (available in September on iTunes or GooglePlay), the interactive festival guide for iPhone or Android.
Fun Fact: The beer may get top billing, but Oktoberfest Zinzinnati is an all-out German food fest. According to the Cincinnati Regional USA Chamber survey of food vendors, the hungry herren and frauen at a recent Oktoberfest Zinzinnati consumed 80,500 bratwurst, 64,000 sauerkraut balls, and 1,875 pounds of German potato salad alone.

Also see:


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Site Re-Design

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  3:54 PM   vacation No comments
We are currently re-designing the site! We are adding Destination Guides, and even more content.

What would you like to see on our site?

Let us know in the comments below!

Friday, May 9, 2014

World Cup 2014 : Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

By Let There Be Travel   Posted at  10:19 AM   world cup 2014 No comments

Welcome to the only guide you will need for your trip to see the World Cup 2014. Everything you will need to know about the city of Rio, where to stay, get tickets, the schedule, what to see and more is right here.


AROUND THE CITY



Botafogo: Come here for Rio’s designer boutiques, art galleries, and views of Sugarloaf Mountain.
Centro: Colonial-era structures and glass-and-steel office buildings fill the city’s commercial heart.
Copacabana: With its world-famous beach and raucous nightclubs, Copacabana is Rio’s touristy epicenter.
Ipanema: This trendy district draws crowds but is calmer than Copacabana. Outdoor cafés line the leafy avenues.
Jardim Botânico: The elegant Jardim Botânico edges the botanical gardens and hums with buzzy restaurants.
Santa Teresa: Artists flock to this hilly area for its bohemian bars and Guanabara Bay views.


STAY

Iberostar Bahia: It's a 5 star all-inclusive so you can eat and drink to your heart's desire. 

Casa Mosquito: Opened in 2011 on a hill above Ipanema, this 1940’s retreat is a mise-en-scène of tropical languor: palm-inspired print pillows; polished parquet; orchids everywhere. Sliding doors in the lobby open up to a sun-dappled patio that looks out over Copacabana’s rooftops; upstairs, the four rooms are decorated with paintings by local artists and have wide, private terraces. 
Copacabana Palace: Rio’s Neoclassical grande dame has lost none of her stateliness since the 1920’s glory days. Fresh off a $20 million makeover, the 145 contemporary rooms are done up in French fabrics and vibrant Brazilian artwork. Food is a highlight: the property’s six-seat chef’s table at Cipriani Restaurant is one of the hottest spots in town, while the Sunday brunch at Pérgula is perennially packed. 
Hotel Fasano Rio De Janeiro: The second branch of restaurateur Rogério Fasano’s understatedly chic brand appeals to both fashionable São Paulo senhoras and European hipsters. Philippe Starck–designed rooms have billowing silk curtains and 1960’s Sergio Rodrigues chairs; at the ground-floor Fasano al Mare restaurant, chef Paolo Lavezzini prepares scallop risotto and an outstanding rock lobster with broccoli soufflé. What we love most: the rooftop pool, with its knockout views of Ipanema’s crescent-shaped beach. 
Hotel Santa Teresa: If you’re looking for an intimate hideaway in sprawling Rio, this is it. There’s a lush garden with swooping, colorful birds; a mosaic-tiled eco-spa; and a quiet hilltop location in charming Santa Teresa. Rooms incorporate indigenous handicrafts from Minas Gerais and floors of glossy ipe hardwood. Ask about staff-led tours of the on-site art collection, which includes sculptures by such notable artists as Rock Lane. 
Mama Ruisa: Set in a colonial-style town house, the seven-bedroom Mama Ruisa is a study in quiet refinement: cedar shutters; French doors; illustrations by Jean Cocteau. The colonnaded veranda is the perfect place for a breakfast of fresh Brazilian fruit and gourmet cheeses, with the Guanabara Bay as your backdrop. 

SHOP


AusländerLocal designer Ricardo Bräutigam creates street clothes with serious attitude—semitransparent black-silk vests; T-shirts emblazoned with rebellious slogans—that are a hit among Rio’s young and stylish set.
Maz: With pop-up stores across the city and flash promotions around the world, designer and entrepreneur Juliana Hemerly Silva’s line has developed a cult following with its zany, colorful sneakers, made of foldable nylon and completely customizable.
Toca do Vinicius: Bossa nova aficionados will love this tiny Ipanema store—a temple to Brazil’s jazz-samba culture—packed with CD’s, vinyl, sheet music, and multilingual books that draw musicians of every skill level. The shop also hosts in-house concerts once a month, featuring leading bossa nova acts.
Gilson Martins: High-end-souvenir seekers won’t want to miss Gilson Martins’s namesake flagship in Ipanema. The Rio-born designer uses the city’s landmarks (Christ the Redeemer; the Lapa arches) as inspiration for the stylized patterns on his inimitable satchels, wallets, and handbags. His items are so iconic, they’ve been shown at the Louvre and Milan Design Week.
Casa DarosZurich-based art collector Ruth Schmidheiny just unveiled her 1,200-piece Latin American art collection in Botafogo following a six-year renovation of the 1866 building. Inside are works from more than 100 talents, including native sculptor Iole de Freitas and Argentine kinetic artist Julio Le Parc.
Maracanã StadiumFew activities in Rio can rival the thrill of watching a match at Brazil’s national soccer stadium—a symbol of the country’s futebol-centric culture—which reopened in June after a $500 million refurbishment. Originally built for the 1950 World Cup, the Maracanã will host the tournament’s championship game for the second time this year. Guided tours are available on non–game days.
Museu De Arte Do RioRio’s newest art museum is the anchor of the Port district revitalization project. Eight exhibition halls in the 20th-century palace feature rotating shows—watercolors of Sugarloaf Mountain; a colorful brick model of Rio’s favelas—that celebrate the city’s scenery and diversity, while art workshops are held in the glass-walled annex.
São Bento MonasteryBehind the 17th-century monastery’s austere façade, you’ll find such treasures as colonial-era panels, massive silver chandeliers, and an intricately carved, gold-plated altar. Don’t miss Sunday morning Mass, when resident monks sing Gregorian chant.
Teleférico Do Complexo Do AlemãoTake a cable car ride at dusk to see Rio’s curiously picturesque shantytowns, with their flickering lanterns and gas lamps.

EAT

Bar Do Mineiro: Santa Teresa residents fill this rustic lunchtime favorite to feast on home-style comfort food such as pork-and-black-bean feijoadaand chicken-and-okra stew—hearty recipes from the nearby mining state of Minas Gerais. If the dining room is packed, order a caipirinha, set yourself up at a sidewalk table, and take in the area’s artsy scene.
OlympeFollowing in the culinary footsteps of his father (who led the nouvelle cuisine movement in 1970’s France), Burgundy-born chef Claude Troisgros decamped for Rio, where he built a four-restaurant empire famous for combining French cooking traditions with local ingredients. At his first outpost, Troisgros whips up innovative dishes that pack a flavorful punch: duck magret with passion fruit; stuffed quail with onion-and-raisin manioc farofa. 
Oui OuiAfter Roberta Ciasca’s restaurant Miam Miam put up-and-coming Botafogo on the foodie map, the Cordon Bleu–trained chef pointed her talents toward Oui Oui, a tapas place that mixes the old-world (Art Deco chairs; ornate ironwork) with the kitsch (disco balls; fiberglass tables). The small, shareable portions are equally creative—tilapia with quinoa and olives; prawns with heart of pupunha (peach palm)—and pair well with any of the international wines. 
Roberta SudbrackSelf-taught chef Roberta Sudbrack cooked at Brazil’s presidential palace for seven years before striking out on her own, opening her namesake restaurant in charming Jardim Botânico. The ever-changing menu focuses on seasonal ingredients sourced from local purveyors; options may include slow-cooked lamb with chervil and potatoes or panqueca de doce de leite.
SatyriconYou’ll be hard-pressed to find better (or fresher) seafood than at Ipanema’s Italian-influenced Satyricon. Choose from the tank’s stock of live lobster and crayfish, or opt for delicacies such as the just-caught sea bream, baked in a rock-salt crust and served by waiters displaying the ideal degree of gravitas. 
Rio ScenariumAmid a scenic clutter of esoteric objects and art, the former antiques gallery turned landmark rocks out every night to five-act musical extravaganzas.
Carioca da GemaThe pioneering hot spot regularly scoops awards for note-perfect samba and jazz shows performed in a two-story town house.
Circo Voador: Bands from all over the world come to play at this cultural center; the energy on the dance floor is uniquely Brazilian.

TICKETS

World Cup tickets are available through the FIFA website or through travel agencies. The cost will vary according to where you're sitting and how far along the match is in the championship. World Cup tickets will not be released all at once, and some countries will have more tickets allotted to them than others. Check with your national soccer federation for more information (i.e., the United States Soccer Federation or theEnglish Football Association).

TIPS


  • Get there early—one or two hours before the match—to mingle with other fans, have a drink, and let expectations build.
  • No outside food or drink will be allowed into stadiums.
  • Bring cash, preferably small bills, and do not carry backpacks or valuables.
  • Never underestimate traffic and the long lines generated at World Cup games. In South Africa, many fans missed the first half of matches because they couldn't get into the stadium on time.
  • Wear comfortable clothing, as it will be a long day.
  • The matches will happen during Brazil's winter, so a light jacket is a good idea, particularly in the South.
  • Do not expect to find a taxi to or from the stadium; plan to walk to the nearest public transportation option.
  • Think of it as a pilgrimage, and enjoy the experience, hassles and all.

SCHEDULE

Group A
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
106/125pmBrazil vs. CroatiaSão Paulo
206/131pmMexico vs. CameroonNatal
1706/174pmBrazil vs. MexicoFortaleza
1806/183pmCameroon vs. CroatiaManaus
3306/235pmCameroon vs. BrazilBrasília
3406/235pmCroatia vs. MexicoRecife
Group B
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
306/134pmSpain vs. NetherlandsSalvador
406/136pmChile vs. AustraliaCuiabá
1906/187pmSpain vs. ChileRio De Janeiro
2006/181pmAustralia vs. NetherlandsPorto Alegre
3506/231pmAustralia vs. SpainCuritiba
3606/231pmNetherlands vs. ChileSão Paulo
Group C
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
506/141pmColombia vs. GreeceBelo Horizonte
606/147pmCôte d'Ivoire vs. JapanRecife
2106/191pmColombia vs. Côte d'IvoireBrasília
2206/197pmJapan vs. GreeceNatal
3706/244pmJapan vs. ColombiaCuiabá
3806/245pmGreece vs. Côte d'IvoireFortaleza
Group D
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
706/144pmUruguay vs. Costa RicaFortaleza
806/149pmEngland vs. ItalyManaus
2306/194pmUruguay vs. EnglandSão Paulo
2406/201pmItaly vs. Costa RicaRecife
3906/241pmItaly vs. UruguayNatal
4006/241pmCosta Rica vs. EnglandBelo Horizonte
Group E
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
906/151pmSwitzerland vs. EcuadorBrasília
1006/154pmFrance vs. HondurasPorto Alegre
2506/204pmSwitzerland vs. FranceSalvador
2606/207pmHonduras vs. EcuadorCuritiba
4106/254pmHonduras vs. SwitzerlandManaus
4206/255pmEcuador vs. FranceRio De Janeiro
Group F
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
1106/157pmArgentina vs. Bosnia- HerzegovinaRio De Janeiro
1206/164pmIran vs. NigeriaCuritiba
2706/211pmArgentina vs. IranBelo Horizonte
2806/216pmNigeria vs. Bosnia- HerzegovinaCuiabá
4306/251pmNigeria vs. ArgentinaPorto Alegre
4406/251pmBosnia- Herzegovina vs. IranSalvador
Group G
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
1306/161pmGermany vs. PortugalSalvador
1406/167pmGhana vs. USANatal
2906/214pmGermany vs. GhanaFortaleza
3006/223pmUSA vs. PortugalManaus
4506/261pmUSA vs. GermanyRecife
4606/261pmPortugal vs. GhanaBrasília
Group H
MatchDate-TimeMatch-UpVenue
1506/171pmBelgium vs. AlgeriaBelo Horizonte
1606/176pmRussia vs. Korea RepublicCuiabá
3106/227pmBelgium vs. RussiaRio De Janeiro
3206/221pmKorea Republic vs. AlgeriaPorto Alegre
4706/265pmKorea Republic vs. BelgiumSão Paulo
4806/265pmAlgeria vs. RussiaCuritiba

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