Archive for the ‘unesco world heritage site’ Category

BOGO Lodging to Celebrate National Parks Week

Thursday, April 8th, 2010

Let’s go BOGO. Who doesn’t love a buy one get one free lodging bargain? When it’s combined with free entrance to a U.S. National Park during the week of April 17- 25, your spring vacation is a budgetary winner. Sure, you could camp at Shenandoah or Yellowstone, but look at these bargains:


Far View Lodge

At Mesa Verde National Park in southwestern Colorado, explore the ancient cliff dwellings of a UNESCO World Heritage site. Visits to Cliff Palace, Balcony House and Long House require a ticket on a ranger-led tour. Be sure to save some time for hiking one of the many trails or visiting the Chapin Mesa Archaeological Museum. From your room at Far View Lodge, high on the mesa’s shoulder, the view encompasses three states and all the stars you can count in the dark, night sky. Rooms are priced at $99 with a consecutive night free. This offer is valid from April 22 – 30, 2010. And, entrance to Mesa Verde National Park is free through the end of April.

Experience Virginia’s beautiful spring with a stay at Skyland Resort in Shenandoah National Park. The historic resort, built in 1886, offers inspiring views of the Shenandoah Valley. But don’t spend all of your time looking out the window from the highest point on Skyline Drive — take a hike, go biking or visit one of the local wineries. Book one night for $125 and receive the second consecutive night free. Offer valid from April 18 – 29, 2010.


Kalaloch Lodge

Olympic National Park in Washington encompasses rain forests, rugged beaches and mountain splendor. Confused about what to see first? Why not split your visit into two Olympic experiences? First take in the rugged Pacific coastline from your accommodations at Kalaloch Lodge. The bird-watching paradise includes hiking, biking and beach-combing opportunities. Next, head 12 miles into the heart of Olympic National Forest for a stay at Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort. Soak away tired muscles after an invigorating hike through an old growth rainforest. Both Kalaloch Lodge and Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort are offering accommodations priced at $157 with a second consecutive night free. This offer is valid from April 17 – 25, 2010.

Shenandoah, Mesa Verde, Olympic — I’m having a hard time deciding which National Park BOGO lodging adventure to choose. How about you?

Photos courtesy ARAMARK Parks and Destinations.

Review by Donna L. Hull, My Itchy Travel Feet.

T’yn Rhos Country House, Snowdonia, Wales

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

From Anne-Sophie Redisch of Sophie’s World

T’yn Rhos Country House

Located in Snowdonia National Park in Northern Wales, T’yn Rhos Country House is a beautifully restored old farmhouse, run by an award-winning chef and reknown for superb 5-course evening dinners. Most of the rooms are large, with comfortable beds and beautiful bespoke beddings and curtains with rates from GBP 75 – 150 per room per night. The common rooms include a pleasant library/lounge and a large bright conservatory.

I misjudged the drive from London (as I always seem to do), so we arrived at 11 pm, much too late for dinner. However, the kitchen quickly prepared delicious soup and sandwiches for us, which was perfect for sleepy kids. I had booked only one night’s stay, but when seeing our lovely room, my daughters insisted we stay longer. To fit our spur-of-the-moment extra nights in, we had to switch rooms the last night and were given a superior room for the same price. Nice touch. But while this room was larger, more luxurious and had gorgeous views, I actually preferred our “old” Honeysuckle Room on the ground floor. Garden doors opened on to the lovely grounds, and I enjoyed having tea by the little pond in the morning mist, kids still asleep.

T’yn Rhos is suitable for quiet getaways and romantic retreats; a grown-up kind of place really, not specifically intended for children. (At least, mine were the only ones about). That’s not to say children weren’t welcome. Mine were quite spoilt by the friendly staff. They were immediately brought cocoa each morning when we came down for breakfast; didn’t even have to ask.

The country house is about a 5-hour-drive from London (longer with kids) or 3 hours by train. It’s a very convenient base for exploring all the fantastic sites of Northern Wales, including the UNESCO World Heritage listed 13th century castles Carnarfon, Conwy, Harlech and Beaumaris, the pretty Isle of Anglesey, the Welsh highlands and the stunning mountains of Snowdonia.

We were always still out and about come dinnertime, so we never tried T’yn Rhos’ famous dinners. But then again, children don’t really appreciate gourmet dining, do they…

T’yn Rhos Country House
Seion, Llanddeiniolen
North Wales LL55 3AE
Tel: + 44 1248 670489
Fax: + 44 1248 671772

Photo courtesy of Anne-Sophie Redisch

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Black Boy Inn, Caernarfon, Wales

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

From Anne-Sophie Redisch of Sophie’s World

Inside the medieval town walls of Caernarfonand just across the street from the imposing UNESCO World Heritage-listed Caernarfon Castle, the heavy stone walls and oak beams of Black Boy Inn have bid a warm welcome to travellers for 500 years. In these surroundings, the past seems enticingly near.

The recently restored bedrooms have slanted ceilings, wooden beams and period furniture. Single rooms are small but sufficient, while the executive double rooms are quite roomy with huge, comfortable beds. There’s even a 4-poster room, making you feel you’ve travelled a few centuries back in time; that is, if you ignore the modern conveniences – large flatscreen TVs and Wi-Fi which is complimentary in the rooms and all around the Inn. Rooms start at 45 pounds for a single room or 54 for a double (68/83 USD) and include a delicious full Welsh breakfast.

The informal tavern downstairs offers good food based on organic, local produce; we enjoyed really excellent fish. The children’s menu is also one of the more creative I’ve seen, even including a couple of vegetarian options for the kiddies. For grown-ups, there’s a real ale bar with a large, award-winning selection of beers. At night, the tavern seems to fill up with locals. Tacked on a board, next to a notice emphatically stating “Behave or Be Banned”, is a list of locals – most of whom sport creative nick names – banned from the premises for misbehaving; some for a year, some indefinitely. I found myself oddly amused with this little bit of local flavour, idly wondering what mischief Flatfish had been up to deserve his indefinite ban.

Black Boy Inn and Caernarfon is easily accessible by car (5 hours from London or a couple of hours from Liverpool), train (3 hours from London) or by car ferry (3 ¼ hours from Dublin to Holyhead on nearby Anglesey). The area is a good base for exploring the beauty of Northern Wales, including Snowdonia National Park and the pretty Isle of Anglesey.

Black Boy Inn
Northgate street
North Wales LL55 1RW
tel + 44 1286 673604
fax + 44 1286 674955

Photo courtesy of Anne-Sophie Redisch

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