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Hotel Mazarin, French Quarter, New Orleans

Hotel Mazarin

We can’t say “no” to NOLA — and we don’t want you to, either. That’s why we’re giving you the chance to win a trip there for two, airfare included.

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sunrise on boggy creek airboats in kissimmee, florida

Experience Kissimmee

We’ve all been there: feeling like you need a vacation from your vacation. This can be especially true when you’re faced with days the crowds, the frenetic pace, and the barrage of merchandising in Orlando’s theme parks. Luckily, a natural escape awaits just outside of the popular sunny city, packed with both real-life thrills as well as peaceful solitude to recharge and relax.

Kissimmee showcases everything there is to love about Florida’s natural wonders and temperate climate. And, just a half hour from the magical worlds of Disney and Universal, its convenient location make it an easy, quick escape. Whether for a mid-afternoon break, or a day or two of rejuvenation before heading home, these adventures show off a different side of central Florida.

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Daytona Beach vacation rental under $100

vacationhomerentals.com

Much of the time, the only way you’re going to save money renting a house versus booking a hotel room is if you are traveling within a group. But even as a couple or a solo traveler, you can make the case for perks like a full kitchen, multiple bathrooms, a pool, spacious common areas, and a balcony or a yard — so long as you can snag a cheap per-night rate. From sunny Sedona to the metropolis of Miami Beach, we found some budget-savvy options less than $100 per night among VacationHomeRentals.com’s 100,000-plus listings. Ready to stay in the heart of things and meet some locals?

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Know Before You Go Disney Cruise Line Lingo

Flickr/Josh Hallett

MagicBand, FastPass+, and Magical Express. Disney is notorious for coming up with imaginative names for almost every single one of its concepts. So it didn’t come as a shock in 1998 when Disney Cruise Line took to the sea with some unique monikers for its onboard offerings.

Here, eight Disney Cruise Line names and phrases you should know before you go.

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money saving travel apps for iphone and android

pixabay.com

We’re all about saving money while traveling, but the need for convenience and unexpected complications can bust a budget in a hurry. These apps can come through in a pinch, helping with everything from finding a ride to a fast, affordable meal.

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Deal Alert Save 20 on Train Travel between London and Paris or Brussels

Flickr/Joshua Veitch-Michaelis

Want to ditch the crowds of people at the airport this year? Just hop on a train, especially if you’re looking to travel throughout Europe.

Making that notion even more appealing is a deal from Rail Europe that discounts EuroStar standard premier (comfort class) tickets by 20 percent for travel between London and Paris or Brussels, with one-way rates starting at $121.

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Vitality Spa on the Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas

We love cruising for the lavish dining options, awesome entertainment, and incredible off-shore excursions. But lately, there’s a new reason for going onboard — top-notch spas. These days, cruise ships offer immersion into stress-free living with luxuriously heated ceramic beds, relaxation pools, and one-of-a-kind massages. Here, five of the best cruise ship spas.

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Travel Bottle Spill

iStock

Whether we travel for fun or for work, we want to look our best. Unfortunately, many of the basic conditions of traveling, especially by air, work against that. Here’s what you need to do.

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lake geneva

flickr/degust

Looking to book your next European adventure right now? SWISS airlines’ current sale includes nonstop flights to Zurich and Geneva for as low as $837, round-trip. We love these fares, especially because they cost about $660 less than what we’re seeing for summer flights.

Here are some of the fares we found. Read more

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Rendering of the Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

Thought the Oasis of the Seas — the world’s biggest cruise ship since 2009 — is humongous at a 5,400-passenger capacity? In spring 2016, Royal Caribbean International is launching an even bigger Harmony of the Seas, slated to accommodate 5,479 guests. Harmony’s design closely follow the Oasis with the concept of themed “neighborhoods,” such as Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, and Youth Zone. But new additions include three multi-story water rides, along with some high-tech features that debuted on the line’s Quantum of the Seas in late 2014 — including the robot-powered Bionic Bar, wristbands that double as stateroom keys, and onboard credit cards.  Read more

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Bixby Bridge - Flickr torroid1

Flickr torroid

Hop into your car and head to one of the country’s five most scenic bridges, each a crown jewel of American architecture. These bridges demonstrate imaginative uses of engineering — overcoming nature’s road-blocks with arches and suspensions that go beyond getting you from point A to point B.  Read more

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Singapore skyline

themreport

Is Asia the new Caribbean? For thousands of experienced cruisers ready to visit exotic places — such as China, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Indonesia — the answer is a resounding “yes.”

While some first-time cruisers set off for Asia, most are intrepid travelers who have already island-hopped in the Caribbean and sailed the familiar cruising grounds of Europe and Alaska. Now, they’re venturing off the beaten path — and cruise lines are delivering with more routes and better ports. Here’s a peek at what’s hot.

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j.n. ding darling national wildlife refuge, sanibel, florida

Flickr/cletch

As winter maintains an icy grip on the East Coast for a few more weeks, we like the idea of following the birds south to sunny Sanibel. Just off the coast of Fort Myers in Florida, Sanibel has seen a resurgence in national and international tourism in recent years, thanks to its year-round sun and white, sandy Gulf beaches. It’s a quieter, more relaxing, and very affordable scene here compared to the hubbub along the state’s eastern coast — ideal for those seeking to stay active but low-key, all the while enjoying fine dining and great shopping. Here’s how to make the most of the area’s expansive nature and golden warmth.

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YVE Hotel Miami downtown deals

YVE Hotel Miami

Bunking in a brand-new hotel near the beach for $169 per night this spring? Yes, please!

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belgrade communism

Flickr[St Stev]

On a recent trip to Southeast Europe, we discovered something fascinating: The former Yugoslavia, to Serbians, was the perfect example of communism. But chat with some locals and chances are they’ll mention that it was really “Titoism,” named after President Josip Broz Tito, that propelled the country to be the socialist, independent nation that it had become. Even today, after Yugoslavia’s collapse, many are proud of their former leader and his lax communist approach. For your own glimpse of Yugo-nostalgia, here’s a communist tour of Belgrade that covers the rise and fall of Tito.

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