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Pozzuoli - an Italian Gem Still Waiting
to Be Discovered

Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples

Pozzuoli is a well-kept secret in the Bay of Naples. With ancient Roman ruins scattered throughout, Pozzuoli is a delightful destination for couples seeking out ancient Italian charm, with a good dose of spa time.

Thanks to the unique volcanic area it rests on, the Phlegrean Fields, Pozzuoli is a marvel of thermal springs, mineral-rich waters and natural saunas.

Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples

This natural spa resort is complemented by a rich history. Inhabited since the 2nd century BC, Pozzuoli has seen a long, multi-chaptered life that is handsomely assembled in its historical centre, Rione Terra.

A recent renovation programme has given the centre an impeccable facelift, so that visitors can really experience its ancient open-air beauty.

Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples

Its multifaceted journey cannot be better emblematized than by its Cathedral. This 17th-century monument was built over the 1st century Roman Temple of Augustus, itself built on an older temple; the Temple of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva dating back to the 2nd century BC.

The cathedral is today home to remarkable 17th century paintings by artists like Giovanni Lanfranco and Jusepe De Ribera, among others.

The town is also home to a Flavian Amphitheatre, the third largest in Italy after Rome's Colosseum and Capua's Amphitheatre.

The Roman Mecellun is another archaeological treasure, documenting what used to be a thriving ancient market.

Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples

Day trips to Naples are a simple affair; with the Cumana railway taking you directly between city centres, Neapolitan pastries and pizzas are just a 20-min dream' away!

For more information about holidays in Pozzuoli  visit www.expertoitaly.com
 

Tee Up at Austria's Highest Altitude Golf Course

The Gotthard hotel in Austria

Lech's winter's maybe legendary but at The Gotthard hotel, summer Golfing holidays are becoming a firm favourite with Golf Lovers. The stunning Alpine 9-hole Golf course positioned 1,500m above sea-level has some challenging holes to keep Golfers entertained.

Golfing at the highest level in the most exclusive holiday region in Austria brings together a complete package. As well as the relaxed and peaceful setting of the Lech course, Golfers looking for variety are within easy reach of 10 of the most beautiful golf courses in Austria.

Enjoy a round of golf at The Gotthard hotel in Austria

Lech's partner Golf club Braz is accessible in 20 minutes and Golf clubs at Brand, Montafon and Rankweil are only 40 minutes away. The Gotthard Hotel is able to provide players with convenience and countless opportunities for recreation and relaxation.

New and exclusive to hotel guests is the fabulous 3-hole Golf Academy, positioned behind the hotel with a driving range, putting green and practice bunker which, guests can use for free. It is beautifully maintained and the perfect place for beginners and advanced golfers alike to practice their swing. Gotthard hotel guests may also request a private booking with the hotel's Golf Pro – Micheal Coventon.

Gotthard Hotel Golf Packages

Enjoy a round of golf at The Gotthard hotel in Austria

Inclusive Gotthard Golf Service: caddy room in the hotel, tee time reservation, golf shuttle to Lech Golf Club (Zug), mountain railways and hiking bus for free, 20% green fee reduction in Vorarlberg

Golfing Holidays

23rd June - 3rd October 2017

3 nights from £437 (€512) per person

5 nights from £691 (€810) per person

· Gourmet breakfast and dinner
· Golf massage
· 2 green fee at Lech (3 green fee for 5 night stay)
· Welcome present
· Guided walks with a hiking guide
· 1 green fee Brand, Braz or Rankweil (5 night stay only)

Golf Proficiency courses

23rd June - 3rd October 2017
(Minimum of 2 people)


7 nights from £1,075 (€1,260) per person

· Imperial breakfast buffet and dinner
· Golf proficiency courses at the Golf Academy with Golf Pro trainer Michael Coventon
· Driving Range Lech and free Golf balls
· Underground garage parking lot
· Free use of the wellness area

Walch and Friends Golf Tournament

30th August - 3rd September 2017

· Golf tournament
· Guided hikes
· Rich breakfast buffet for golfers
· Diverse and delicious dinners
· Bikes and e-bikes for free
· Free use of the wellness area
· 25% green fee reduction at the Golf Club Lech
· 20% on all golf courses in Vorarlberg

The Gotthard hotel in Austria

Well located with top facilities amongst the alpine air and mountain vistas, the Gotthard promises a peaceful and refreshing golf holiday. Golf host at the Gotthard, hotel owner Clemens Walch, looks forward to welcoming and playing the first round with his guests.

For more information about the Gotthard hotel click on www.gotthard.at
 

Crown Princess Entertainment Programme

Crown Princess

Princess Cruises has announced its full entertainment programme on Crown Princess, one of its Southampton-based ships. Crown Princess is sailing to the Mediterranean and northern Europe from now until September on seven and 14-night cruises.

Onboard activities will be launched such as a last night of the proms celebration, a first for Princess Cruises, and various themed activities including marking Shark Week throughout July in partnership with the Discovery Channel.

There will be performances from guest entertainers including Ria Jones, who has performed in leading roles in numerous West End musicals; 'The Hollies' singer Peter Howarth; and former winner of The Voice TV show, Leanne Mitchell.

A number of the main spring and summer sporting events will be available to view both in guests' staterooms and on the top deck 'Movies Under the Stars' cinema screen. These include Premier League and Champions League football, the Ryder Cup and Wimbledon tennis.

Pop concerts will also be on both the big and small screen and feature the likes of Annie Lennox, Peter Gabriel, Sting and Lady Gaga.

And several UK TV channels will be to hand for the first time on a Princess ship - including BBC and ITV HD, Sky News and Sky Sports News - as well as a host of recent films.

In addition, themed food and drink will be served to mark special occasions and complement screenings. For instance champagne, Pimm's and strawberries will be on offer during Wimbledon fortnight.

Meanwhile the previously-announced speaker programme is the first on a Princess UK ship and forms part of the line's Encounters with Discovery series.

The Entertainment Schedule

· Graham Gooch OBE (former England cricket captain), on a 7-night Scandinavia cruise, departs May 27th.

· James Cosmo (actor in films including Braveheart and Trainspotting), on a 14-night Baltic cruise, departs June 3rd.

· Pete Best (original drummer for The Beatles), on a 14-night North Cape and Norwegian Fjords cruise, departs June 17th.

· John Virgo (former snooker player, current snooker commentator), on a 7-night Norwegian Fjords cruise, departs July 1st.

· Terry Butcher (former England captain and football manager), on a 14-night Baltic cruise, departs July 8th.

· Paul Burrell RVM (butler to Diana, Princess of Wales), on a 7-night Norwegian Fjords cruise, departs July 22nd.

· Mike Gatting OBE (former England cricket captain), on a 14-night Mediterranean cruise, departs July 29th.

· Sherrie Hewson (actor, presenter, broadcaster and novelist), on a 14-night North Cape and Norwegian Fjords cruise, departs August 12th.

· Edwina Currie (former MP. Novelist and broadcaster), on a 7-night Scandinavia cruise, departs August 26th.

Each speaker will host a 45-minute talk with questions and answers, as well as a meet and greet session including photographs and book signings. Some speakers will also be judges on 'The Voice of the Ocean', an onboard singing competition for guests, which is based on ITV's 'The Voice'.

Pete Best says, “I'm really looking forward to being with everyone on the Crown Princess. The guests are a remarkable fun loving crowd - I've enjoyed their company immensely and I hope they will enjoy mine.”

For more information or to book visit www.princess.com/holiday

Or call 0843 374 2402.
 

Travel & Holidays


Silver Travel Prize Draw

 

Win a holiday to the GK Beach hotel in Western Crete

At Silver Travel Advisor you can find a wealth of information, impartial reviews written by people like you, as well as suggestions, ideas and destination reports about travel for the over 50’s.
 

If you have any questions, a team of experienced Advisors who are retired travel professionals are ready to assist at no charge. And you can share your own experiences too by writing reviews.

It’s easy to enter the Prize draw with Silver Travel Advisor.

      May 2017 Prize Draw

Win a holiday to the GK Beach hotel in Western Crete


  Win a Week's Holiday to the
    GK Beach Hotel in Crete!


This month Silver Travel Advisor’s free prize draw winner and partner will be flying off to Western Crete to stay at the GK Beach hotel, courtesy of Simpson Travel.

The GK Beach hotel comprises 23 comfortable suites, all with a patio or balcony, looking down to sea

This is a super hotel, comprising 23 most comfortable suites, all with a patio or balcony, looking down to the sea.

The swimming pool, restaurant, serving Cretan specialities, and bar are all close to the beach, allowing guests to thoroughly enjoy themselves without leaving the hotel

The swimming pool, restaurant, serving Cretan specialities, and bar are all close to the beach, allowing guests to thoroughly enjoy themselves without leaving the hotel!

That said, the village of Kalives is just a short stroll away and offers local shops, cafes and restaurants.

The swimming pool, restaurant, serving Cretan specialities, and bar are all close to the beach, allowing guests to thoroughly enjoy themselves without leaving the hotel

As car hire is included, you might like to explore the stunning scenery of the White Mountains, with tiny churches hidden or built into caves, the lively, historic town of Chania with its market and harbour, or maybe take a look at the dramatic gorges, which are wonderful to walk down: take a taxi back up!

This is a really welcoming island, with a great history and so much to explore: the GK Beach is just the place to do this from!
 

  Enter the Prize Draw

Win a holiday to the GK Beach hotel in Western Crete

     Terms & Conditions


See
www.silvertraveladvisor.com for more details as well as terms & conditions and the growing list of holiday prize winners

 To Enter the Competition
      Click on
Enter Now

 

Free Dog-Friendly Holiday Guide
for South Devon


Coast & Country Cottages is delighted to have launched South Devon Loves Dogs, a new dog-friendly holiday guide FREE to download at coastandcountry.co.uk


Three times British Travel Award-winning holiday lettings agency Coast & Country Cottages is delighted to have launched South Devon Loves Dogs, a new dog-friendly holiday guide FREE to download at www.coastandcountry.co.uk

South Devon holidays aren't just for people… this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is a popular holiday destination for dogs (and their owners) too! With miles of unspoilt coastal paths to explore, countless dog-friendly beaches, and hundreds of pubs, restaurants and cafés that welcome four-legged friends, this is a wonderful region to discover with your pooch.

South Devon holidays aren't just for people… this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is a popular holiday destination for dogs (and their owners) too

This insightful one-stop guide is filled with informative and useful articles, with advice from local vets and the National Farmers' Union, not to mention a 'dog-friendly directory' of South Devon eateries that welcome pets, and contact details of local businesses those holidaying with dogs in the area might find useful.

South Devon Loves Dogs has been produced by the team at South Devon based holiday lettings agency Coast & Country Cottages, who offer over 400 self catering holiday properties exclusively in this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Whether you are visiting the area or live locally, use this handy guide to plan your next walk, to find out about pet-friendly accommodation, or for top tips on finding 'doggie beer' in the area!

Karen Jones, Director at Coast & Country Cottages, says, "We created South Devon Loves Dogs for visitors and local people alike, to help showcase the wonderful array of dog-friendly businesses and holiday properties we have here in South Devon, as well as offering advice and suggestions for those looking for inspiration on walks or tips on looking after their dog on holiday."

Tina Doyle, Assistant Marketing Manager adds, "It was a joy to help create South Devon Loves Dogs. The photography alone has been wonderful to work on - the images throughout the guide are so breathtaking, with so many photogenic dogs to choose from! We are truly so lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world with our pets."

South Devon Loves Dogs - pet friendly holiday guide

To download the free guide, simply click on www.coastandcountry.co.uk/downloads

For more information about South Devon Loves Dogs, or to discuss holiday availability call the locally based Coast & Country Cottages team on Telephone: 01548 843773.

 

Discover Anne of Green Gables Heritage in Canada


Discover Anne of Green Gables heritage in Canada

From May 12th, 2017 Anne of Green Gables will be returning to TV screens around the world. The new Netflix series hits the screens for an 8 part series. The story is set on Prince Edward Island, in Canada.

Brush up on your Facts

1. Anne of Green Gables was first published in 1908 and sold 19,000 copies in the first 5 months

2. It went into 10 printings in its first year and was translated into Swedish in 1909. It has since been translated into more than a dozen languages.

3. It is believed that more than 50 million copies have been sold worldwide

4. The term 'Anne of Green Gables' is currently a registered trademark, owned jointly by the province of Prince Edward Island and the heirs of the author, Lucy Maud Montgomery. Producers of Anne related products outside of PEI pay a royalty to the family while Island producers make Anne items royalty free.

5. Lucy Maud Montgomery was born on the north shore of Prince Edward Island in 1874 and raised in Cavendish by her grand parents.

6. Montgomery saw the coming of the telephone, wireless radios, cars, airplanes, motorized tractors, silent films and talking movies, she lived through WW1 and the beginning of her views about culture and about women changed with those of her times.

7. The story of Anne spanned a series of 8 novels and other books included Emily of New Moon, Jane of Lantern Hill, Pat of Silver Bush, The Story Girl. Many of her works went on to be adapted for film.

8. Each year hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world visit the sites which inspired the settings for L.M. Montgomery to create the tale of a red haired orphan , Anne of Green Gables.

9. In Poland, Montgomery was something of a wartime hero. Polish soldiers were issued with copies of a Montgomery novel to take to the front with them in The Blue Castle was made into a musical in Kracow in the 1980's and its performances were sold out. Today, there is a L.M. Montgomery School in Warsaw.

10. In addition to the Green Gables House, several museums and sites invite visitors to learn more about Anne, and a Musical Version of the story runs in the summer at the Charlottetown Festival.

Where to find your Inner Anne

1. Start your day in Cavendish at the setting of Anne's story: Green Gables Heritage Place, located in Prince Edward Island National Park. Explore the preserved gable house that inspired the Author, Lucy Maud Montgomery and walk the grounds including the Haunted Wood and Lovers Lane.

2. Visit the site of Lucy Maud Montgomery's Cavendish home where the author's relatives still reside.

3. Spend the afternoon at Avonlea Village - a recreated rural community based on the village where Anne lived.

4. Visit New London with a visit to Lucy Maud Montgomery's birthplace. Here you can see a replica of the writers wedding dress and scrapbooks containing some of her stories and poems.

5. Visit the Anne Gables Museum at Silver Bush. Peruse antiques from the authors time and don't miss Matthews Carriage Ride around the Silver Bush Property, past the Lake of Shining Waters.

6. Head to Gateway Village in Borden – Carleton, where you can dress up as Anne herself, for a replica photo at Cavendish Figurines.

7. In Bideford you can view the Bideford Parsonage Museum, where a 19 year old Montgomery lived. Today it's a museum with multiple themes; PEI's ship building past, the contributions of parsons and ministers to PEI and of course, Lucy Maud herself.

8. Visit the Lower Bedeque Schoolhouse, where L.M. Montgomery taught.

9. Search for the perfect Anne souvenir in Charlottetowns many gift and craft shops.

10. Treat yourself to a performance of Anne of Green Gables – The Musical ™ at the Confederation Centre of the Arts. This is Canada's longest running family musical and runs from June to September.

How to Book an Anne Inspired Trip

Charlottetown is accessible through a short flight from Halifax, Nova Scotia, served by direct flights from the UK. Tour operators who have Prince Edward Island packages include:

www.expedia.co.uk

www.canadianaffair.com

www.canadiansky.co.uk


For information on Canada as a holiday destination visit www.explore-canada.co.uk
 

Sixtyplusurfers Holiday Review

 
The Swan, Lavenham

The Swan, Lavenham


             By Simon Fine


The beautiful village of Lavenham sits in the heart of Suffolk, between Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury. It is one of the finest examples of a medieval village with more than 300 ancient buildings, many of which are listed as being of architectural and historic interest. Arriving in the village on a sunny spring afternoon we were quite blown away by the stunning architecture lining the high street. In the heart of Lavenham we soon found The Swan Hotel & Spa, with its 15th century half timbered exterior.

We parked at The Swan’s convenient secure car park opposite the hotel and entered through huge wooden doors. The oak beamed interior was full of character with several comfortable lounge areas which we passed through before being warmly greeted at reception. The Swan has 45 individual bedrooms which are reached via characterful staircases and corridors which required me to lower my head at various doorways.

The bedroom had a king-sized bed, luxury bathroom and a cosy lounge area with table and chairs

A friendly porter carried our cases to our room. He explained that the hotel was originally several properties which have been knocked through over the years. Our room was stunning, with a king-sized bed, luxury bathroom and a cosy lounge area with table and chairs.


There was lots of space to store our belongings plus a lovely TV and tea & coffee making facilities. We had a perfect panoramic view of the High Street.

We explored the beautiful town of Lavenham

Taking advantage of the late afternoon sun, we decided to explore Lavenham. The most striking feature is the period architecture, with rows of timber framed cottages, many colourfully painted and at quirky angles. Lavenham is a truly spectacular place.

The high street boasts numerous antique shops, galleries and boutiques where it was tempting to spend a great deal of time and a few pounds too. There are also a number of welcoming pubs and highly rated restaurants and tea shops.


The AA two rosette Gallery restaurant at The Swan, Lavenham

The Swan offers a fine dining experience in their AA two rosette Gallery restaurant which features a magnificent high timbered ceiling, a minstrel’s gallery, exposed brickwork and an impressive fireplace. It felt like the height of self indulgence. The imaginative menu offers a potential five courses, for those with appetites to match.

We settled on three courses, starting with brown crab, sweetcorn, coriander and popcorn for me and globe and jerusalem artichoke, hazelnuts and hen’s egg for my partner. Both were beautifully presented and subtly flavoured. Our main courses were similarly delicious and a little adventurous. My partner chose venison haunch, honey blackberries and celeriac whilst I selected halibut, tandoori spice, pineapple and coconut.
 

For desert we selected a delicious banana cake with custard

For desert we selected a delicious banana cake with custard and an indulgent chocolate creation. Definitely a restaurant to dress up for, it was quite simply one of the most memorable meals we have ever enjoyed in the most luxurious setting imaginable. Plus the service was warm, friendly and highly professional.

For indulgence of a different nature, The Swan features the Weavers' House Spa which offers over 30 different treatments including facials, manicures and massages. Overnight guests have a complimentary two-hour session with use of the facilities including the sauna, steam room, outdoor vitality pool and relaxation lounge.
Weavers' House Spa is a wonderful, modern facility providing total comfort and relaxation.

Relax and unwind at The Swan Hotel, Lavenham

Following a lovely night’s sleep in our super comfortable bed, we wandered down for breakfast, which was also served in the Gallery Restaurant. Unlike many hotels, breakfast at The Swan is served to your table throughout, with no need for guests to leave their seat to serve themselves.

The breakfast menu was extensive and catered for all tastes. As well as the traditional full English, which I can confirm was absolutely delicious, The Swan offers a Garden Breakfast of sautéed sweet potato, char-grilled artichoke, mushroom, tomato and a choice of fried, poached or scrambled egg.

The AA two rosette Gallery restaurant at The Swan, Lavenham

Also on offer were pancakes, eggs benedict, smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, kippers, cereals, yogurts, fruit, freshly squeezed juices and a selection of their sensational homemade toasted breads and more! While I tucked into Suffolk pork sausage and cured Suffolk bacon, my partner thoroughly enjoyed the meat-free option.

Lavenham is ideally placed to explore the beautiful county of Suffolk, currently bursting with spring colour with vast yellow fields of rapeseed flowers and trees heaving with blossom and fresh new green leaves.

Lavenham is ideally placed to explore the beautiful county of Suffolk


There are many walks in the area, whilst the picturesque villages of Clare and Cavendish are a short drive away and the bustling towns of Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury offer an attractive mix of modern shops and historic places of interest.

We spent an afternoon exploring Lavenham’s finest building, The Guildhall, a spectacular timber-framed building, set in the historic Market Place, built around 1530. Over the centuries The Guildhall has served the community in many ways, and is now a National Trust property.


Kentwell Hall in Long Melford

During our stay, we visited Kentwell Hall in the pretty town of Long Melford. Kentwell Hall is one of England’s finest Tudor Houses. It also features a walled garden, a magnificent moat house and several lovely woodland walks.

The newly born lambs at Kentwell Hall in Long Melford

We loved strolling around the gardens and particularly visiting the farm and stables which are home to several Suffolk Punch horses, goats, pigs and donkeys. But the highlight of our visit was the newly born lambs which had cuteness in abundance.

Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury

We also loved our visit to Gainsborough’s House, which is a museum and art gallery at the birthplace of Thomas Gainsborough in Sudbury. Gainsborough was one of the greatest painters in the history of British art and the House features a collection of his work, both portraits and landscapes.

The beautiful portrait paintings at Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury

When we visited, there were also fascinating exhibitions of the works of Constable and contemporary artist, Julian Perry. The House is managed by The Gainsborough House Society and offers many exhibitions, courses and events.


At the rear of the House is a beautiful historic garden which we thoroughly enjoyed, with its gorgeous swathes of tulips and centuries old mulberry tree.

The beautiful gardens at Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury

We had a memorable stay at The Swan. It is a special hotel with a fabulous team who know how to look after their guests.

Lavenham is a beautiful village surrounded by many places of interest.

Book a stay at The Swan at Lavenham Hotel & Spa

To book a stay at the Swan at Lavenham Hotel & Spa and treatments in Weavers’ House Spa call Tel: 01787 247 477.

Or visit www.theswanatlavenham.co.uk

Book a stay at The Swan at Lavenham Hotel & Spa

Rooms start from £185 per night for two sharing including a full Suffolk breakfast; dinner from the a la carte menu is from £39 per person for three courses.

For details about visiting Kentwell Hall please visit www.kentwell.co.uk 

For information about Gainsborough's House click on www.gainsborough.org