Celebrations International Travel Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Celebrations International Travel

Happy New Year, everyone!  In 2012 and beyond, our blog entries will appear directly on the Celebrations International Travel Web site, at www.celebrationsinternationaltravel.com/blog

Thank you for reading, and please do visit us on our new page!  Happy New Year, and here’s to your travels in 2012!

My family, like many others, writes a holiday letter updating friends and family on the year’s events.  You would think that in a whole year’s time, I’d at least have something to write about.  This time last year, I found myself literally staring blankly at the Christmas-themed stationery I had created on my computer. 

I didn’t know what to say because I couldn’t think of anything noteworthy enough to be included in our holiday letter.  So I wrote a traditional, hum-drum holiday letter: 

– Everyone’s doing well.

– The kids are getting older and doing well in school.

– We look forward to next year.

Suffice it to say that that letter could have been written by anyone, and that the update was nothing short of generic.  Well, I’m happy to say that experience won’t repeat itself this year!

Our agency’s tagline is “Celebrating Life Through Travel”.  In the new year, don’t just go through the motions.  Celebrate life!  You don’t have to travel far to celebrate the good things in life.  We believe it’s more about the experiences you have and the memories you create with your loved ones. 

Wherever life’s travels take you, experience every day and every destination in ways that you enjoy and that are meaningful to you.  Then you’ll be sure to have something interesting and memorable to write about in your holiday letter!

We wish you safe and happy travels this holiday season and throughout the year.

Celebrations International Travel

As a follow-up to my post on the use of professional travel agents, I’d like to talk about an innovation that my agency, Celebrations International Travel,  introduced last year.  I should stress that I think this, or any other online travel site, is best used when travelers have a good idea of what they want and are familiar with the destination and type of travel involved.  For all other trips, I highly recommend contacting a full-service, professional travel agency directly.

The Internet has become an indispensable tool for the majority of us, and I think it’s fair to say there’s no turning back now!  But a pet peeve I’ve always had about booking travel on the Internet is the lack of human interaction and contact.

Buying travel isn’t like buying a book or CD.  You can always return or have an item replaced, but if something happens to cause your hard-earned vacation plans to go sour, what then?  If it was booked through an online mega-agency, chances are you’ll have to call the customer service number on the Web site and speak to a rep who doesn’t know you or your travel plans, and could very well be reciting to you from a manual.

In an effort to improve the travel booking experience, Celebrations International Travel introduced Celebrations Travel Online, an automated booking site that allows travelers the flexibility and convenience of booking travel via the Internet, but with the added convenience and peace-of-mind that comes with the personalized service of a professional travel agent.

Agents are on hand to answer any questions prior to booking, and all bookings made via Celebrations Travel Online are serviced by an agent of Celebrations International Travel, our full-service agency.  We always contact the traveler to answer any questions, and to make sure they’ve received and understand their travel documents, procedures, and who to call if they need anything.  We think this combined automated booking and personal service gives travelers the best of both worlds:  modern technology and dedicated, personal service.

Celebrations International Travel...Celebrating Life Through Travel

With the advent of the Internet, travelers have greater access and more options than ever when it comes to booking trips.  I’ll be the first to admit that using the Internet is indeed a convenient way to book travel.  But I don’t think it’s always the best option, especially if you’re considering an extensive or detailed trip, or if the trip involves a destination or type of travel that you’re not familiar with.

In these cases, why not consider using a professional travel agent?  A good, knowledgeable travel agent is trained to ask the right questions, make suitable recommendations based on your needs, wants, and travel budget, and make your arrangements in a way that best ensures a smooth and hassle-free trip.

At many agencies, including Celebrations International Travel, it does not cost you extra to use our services.  Then how do we get paid, you ask?  The travel suppliers we work with pay us.  So there is no extra cost to you, our clients; and it is in our best interest to find you the best deal possible on travel experiences you’ll thoroughly enjoy.

The next time you have the urge to get away, to enjoy some much-needed time off, why not leave the planning to the pro’s?  Celebrations International Travel’s agents would be more than happy to help you plan the perfect vacation.  Contact us to learn more about how we can help you.

Celebrations International Travel...Celebrating Life Through Travel

I hear Alaska referred to in many ways as a destination:  Alaska is a great place for families.  Alaska is great for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.   People travel to Alaska to see the “Last Frontier,” the unspoiled natural beauty that isn’t found in most places anymore.

These might all sound like cliches, but the fact of the matter is that while no destination can be all things to all people, Alaska truly does offer something for just about everyone.

Here are a few of my personal favorites, listed by the type(s) of travelers to whom they are mostly geared:

For Those Who Prefer Sightseeing and/or Less Physically Demanding Activities:

Ketchikan by Horse-Drawn Trolley  Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau, Alaska

Motorcoach Tour of Ketchikan + Visit to Totem Bight State Park

Mendenhall Glacier Tour + Salmon Bake (Juneau)

Mount Roberts Tramway (Juneau)

Klondike Summit & Suspension Bridge (Skagway)

Klondike Highway Drive & Caribou Crossing Lunch (Skagway)

Skagway’s Original Streetcar

White Pass Summit Train Ride (Skagway)

Double-Decker Bus Tour in Victoria, B.C.

For Culinary Enthusiasts:

View of Skagway

Creek Street in Ketchikan

Victoria Pub Tour

City Lights, Wine & Chocolate (Victoria)

Grand Victoria & High Tea at the Empress Hotel

Alaskan Chef’s Table (Ketchikan)

Wilderness Exploration & Crab Feast (Ketchikan)

Salmon Bake (most commonly experienced in Juneau, although available in other ports)

Alaska Cooking School + Beer Tastings (Juneau)

Alaska Garden Gourmet Culinary Tour (Skagway)

Delectable Jewell Gardens (Skagway)

Taste of Skagway

Nature Lovers & Photographers:

See and photograph bears and other wildlife in Alaska

See and photograph bears and other wildlife in Alaska

Rainforest Wildlife Sanctuary (Ketchikan)

Coastal Wildlife Cruise (Ketchikan)

Bear Watch (Ketchikan)

Dog Sled Summer Camp (Juneau)

Whale Watching & Wildlife Quest or Evening Whale Quest (Juneau)

Photo Safari by Land & Sea (Juneau)

Alaska Nature & Wildlife Expedition – Scenic Cruise + Wildlife Search (Skagway)

Long-Horned Sheep

Long-Horned Sheep

Eagle Preserve Wildlife River Adventure – Scenic Cruise to Haines + Jet Boat Cruise & Meal at the Preserve (Skagway)

For Families with Children:

Totems & Lumberjack Combo (Ketchikan)

Bering Sea Crab Fisherman’s Tour (Ketchikan)

Menhall Glacier & Salmon Hatchery Tour (Juneau)

Gold Panning (commonly in Juneau or Skagway)

Jewell Gardens – Take a walk through the gardens.  The kids will especially enjoy seeing the model railroad on display. (Skagway)

Enchanting Buchart Gardens (Victoria)

For Active Travelers:

Rainforest Canopy Ropes & Zipline Park (Ketchikan); similar excursions also available in Skagway

Back Country Jeep & Canoe Safari (Ketchikan)

Sled Dogs in  Yukon

Sled Dogs in Yukon

Alpine Zip & Glacier Adventure (Juneau)

Bike & Tram Elevation Sensation (Juneau)

Horseback Riding in Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park (Skagway)

Klondike Rock Climbing & Rappelling (Skagway)

There are also numerous opportunities to enjoy dog sledding, kayaking, canoeing, hiking, snorkeling, biking, fishing and other active pursuits in Alaska.  The sky’s the limit, literally!

For Culture Enthusiasts:

Saxman Native Village (Ketchikan)

Totem Poles

Authentic Totem Poles

Potlatch Park & Heritage Tour (Ketchikan)

Liarsville Experience (Skagway)

Glassblowing Experience at Jewell Gardens (Skagway)

Skagway’s Custom Classic Cars

Waterfront Walking Tour (Victoria)



These are just a few ideas for the many ways you might enjoy spending your time in port on your Alaskan cruise.  While many cruise lines offer similar shore excursions, some experiences may be unique to the individual cruise lines.  Contact us for more information or to book your own Alaskan cruise vacation!


Many thanks to Joy at Gourmeted.com for her blog post yesterday profiling Celebrations International Travel as a sponsor and highlighting our Culinary Tours.

Gourmeted.com

I had the pleasure of speaking with Joy recently after a couple of months of e-mailing.  Not surprisingly, we share a common love of great food and world travel.  Joy enlightened me with the notion that there are many other “people like us” out there who take their love of food and cooking seriously, and want to travel the world to delight in this passion.

It is my hope that in collaboration with Joy, I can impart my knowledge and love of both travel and culinary excellence, helping food and wine enthusiasts enjoy custom culinary experiences around the world.

Celebrations International Travel - Custom Culinary Tours

Gourmeted.com‘s featured Lasagne of Emilia-Romagna looks like it’s ready for the best Italian grandma’s Sunday dinner table!

Lasagna of Emilia-Romagna from Gourmeted.com

Lasagna of Emilia-Romagna from Gourmeted.com

Not only does this look delicious, but Joy from Gourmeted.com includes the recipe with instructions, including many pictures of her first attempt at lasagna-making.  What a wonderful first lasagna!

I know there are many wonderful cooks and culinary enthusiasts out there who share this passion for great food and excellence in our kitchens.  Follow your passions and indulge in a custom culinary tour to Italy, where you can take hands-on cooking classes, visit local markets with chefs, tour vineyards, taste wines, and do just about anything else you want to satisfy your culinary pleasures and curiosity.  Contact us to start planning your custom tour today!

Celebrations International Travel...Celebrating Life Through Travel


About Us


This is blog based on the experiences and interests of travel agency owners Adrienne and Agni Mitra. Through our blog entries, we will share our travel experience and expertise. We will also have other entries of interest to inspire your travels.

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