Portland: A Cultural Retreat in the Pacific Northwest

July 17, 2014 Posted by admin

Known for its wine, its incredible cuisine and its free-spirited people, Portland beckons foodies, artists, nature-lovers, and those who like to live a little bit out of the mainstream.

This city has a both a laid-back vibe and a bit of a wild side, which makes it an intriguing and memorable place to visit. There is something curious to see everywhere you go in Portland, and something new to experience. While remnants of the city’s Wild West past remain, including horse rings in many places, this is a forward-thinking place that values progress and ideas. It’s a city known for celebrating individualism, self-expression and creativity.

Portland tends to draw in those who march to the beat of their own drum, and part of its charm is experiencing the city’s offbeat culture. The people are quirky, idealistic, friendly and passionate, and everyone you meet has a story to tell.

Like other cities in the Pacific Northwest, Portland is highly invested in preserving nature, utilizing local natural resources, promoting local farms and small businesses and supporting the farm-to-table movement. Healthful, organic food options abound, and fresh meats, seafood and produce are easy to come by. In the skilled hands of Portland’s many exceptional chefs and artisans, these ingredients become something truly incredible.

Portland is a food-lover’s paradise. The city was named 2010’s second best foodie town in America, and for good reason. There are more intriguing, off-the-wall and delightfully unique restaurants than you can imagine in this city, and almost all of them have a keen eye on quality, innovation and sustainability. There are also food trucks everywhere, traveling wherever the crowds are and offering delicious and distinctive food on the go. There is something for every palate and philosophy here. The city even holds the distinction of having the most options for vegans and vegetarians.

Things to Do

Parks and Gardens

Those who live in and visit Portland typically have a deep appreciation for nature, and many of the city’s best attractions are outdoors. Portland has pleasant springs, beautiful, mild summers and brilliantly colored autumns, and the scenery is truly breathtaking in every season.

One of Portland’s most popular natural attractions is the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. With its thundering waterfall, 80 miles of canyons and stunning vistas, this is a perfect place to immerse yourself in Portland’s natural beauty.

Forest Park, another gorgeous Portland spot, sits is situated just outside of downtown, yet makes you feel as though you’re deep in the woods of the Pacific Northwest. This is the largest urban park in the country, and features extensive hiking and biking trails, a formal Japanese garden and a zoo.

Often called the City of Roses, Portland comes alive with colorful flowers in the spring and summer. The International Rose Test Garden is a perfect place to see some of the city’s finest specimens. Wander around the garden, stretch out for a nap in the lush green grass, and enjoy the serene view of Mount Hood in the distance. There is no admission fee: come as often as you like and stay as long as you like.

Another of Portland’s most beautiful planned gardens is the Lan Su Chinese Garden. This exquisite garden is the result of collaboration between Portland and its sister city Suzhou, which is famed for its Ming Gardens. Located in Chinatown, Lan Su offers the opportunity to experience a classic Chinese garden. It features graceful and opulent Chinese architecture, indigenous Chinese plants and a tea house that makes the perfect spot for refreshment and relaxation.

Museums

Portland features a number of excellent museums that are well worth visiting. The Oregon Museum of Science and History features a planetarium, an empirical theater and four separate halls filled with fun and educational hands-on exhibits. This is a perfect place to bring the whole family.

The Portland Art Museum is a true treasure for art lovers. It features one section showcasing contemporary art, and another with Native American, European and Chinese art. The works featured are truly exceptional, and it’s easy to spend a whole day getting lost among the exhibits.

Indicative of Portland’s charm and unique quirks, the Faux Museum is the museum that isn’t. Tongue firmly in cheek, it calls itself a “conceptual art museum,” and features weirdly wonderful collections of items that include everything from the world’s last wooly ant to jars of fingernails. The whole museum put together with a touch of humor, which is perfectly balanced with a true sense of wonder.

Landmarks

One of Portland’s most popular landmarks is the quaint and beautiful St. John’s Bridge. Drive over the bridge, or walk across it to take things in more slowly. Once you’ve crossed, take some time to hike either side of the bridge, or visit the charming garden that sits underneath.

If you’re looking to experience a bit of Portland’s energy and see some of its true colors, head to Pioneer Place. Located in the heart of downtown Portland, this four-block square features shopping, dining and entertainment, and is always bustling with activity. This is the perfect place to enjoy some of Portland’s famous coffee, or indulge in people watching.

The Pittock Mansion is one of Portland’s oldest and most beautiful landmarks. This historic house and museum offers a rich look at Portland’s storied past, and features a 46-acre park with spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and forests.

Explore Portland with Travelation: Find amazing accommodations at the best rates today.

Exploring the Best of Bangkok With Travelation

April 10, 2014 Posted by admin

The bustling, still-burgeoning metropolis of Bangkok is a scintillating mixture of the ancient and the new, as well as a great place to experience Thailand at its best. It’s no wonder that this travel spot is a favorite among Travelation users who are traveling to Asia. While Bangkok’s nightlife is famed the world over, there is much more to this city than what it offers after dark. This is a perfect place to visit for those who love exploring new cities, dining on some of the world’s most fantastic food and embracing a new cultural adventure.

What to Do

Dinner Cruise: Bangkok offers several dinner cruises, where you can enjoy the city scenery from the comfort of a luxury boat as you dine on delicious Thai food. Bangkok comes alive at night, as the temples and skyscrapers light up and the locals come out to enjoy the evening air.

Klong Tour: A klong tour is a great way to explore Bangkok as it once was. You can take a tranquil ride along Bangkok’s canals in a beautiful long-tail boat. You’ll get a glimpse into traditional Thai life, from trading boats packed with fresh fruit to beautiful teak houses.

Old City Tour: While there are many ways to sample the modern, cosmopolitan side of Bangkok, nothing is more fascinating or enlightening than touring the Old City. Here’s where you’ll find the most beautiful and treasured relics of Bangkok’s past, including the Grand Palace, Wat Phra Kaew, the historic Sanam Luang Park and the National Gallery.

Street Food: Thailand is famous for its street food, which is cheap, delicious and enjoyed by locals everywhere. Sampling noodles, roasted duck, dumplings and an assortment of fried spicy, sweet and savory treats is a must. Even if you don’t plan to partake, the smells, sights and sounds of the food are irresistible.

Tuk Tuk Rides: While Bangkok’s famed tuk-tuks are losing out in popularity to colorful taxis, they are still a fun and iconic way to get around the city, and an adventure worth taking.

What to See

Wat Arun: Set on the bank of the Chao Phraya River, Wat Arun is one of Bangkok’s most beautiful and most recognizable temples, featuring colorful spires, a sense of grandeur and an ancient atmosphere.

Siam Square: Siam Square is a sprawling, upscale shopping and entertainment center that features everything from brand-name mall stores to out-of-the-way boutiques. There are also great cafés and restaurants that offer a range of different foods, from traditional Thai to international cuisines.

Floating Market: While some have become a bit inauthentic in their attempt to win over tourists, Bangkok’s famed Floating Markets still offer a fascinating glimpse into a traditional Thai way of life, with boats offering fresh tropical fruit, coconut water and freshly prepared foods.

Getting to Bangkok is easy with Travelation. Simply book your flight on Travelation’s website, and enjoy the lowest fares around.

Mumbai Captivates Travelers With a Dizzying Array of Attractions

April 3, 2014 Posted by admin

Visiting Mumbai is a travel experience unlike any other. From the moment you step outside the airport, you are greeted with a barrage of colors, sounds, smells, and fast-moving people and cars. It takes a bit for the uninitiated to get used to the sights, sounds and lightning-quick pace of Mumbai, but eventually those who visit fall captive to its vibrant charm and intriguing culture.

Formerly known as Bombay, Mumbai is India’s most populated and wealthiest city, as well as its entertainment capital. The city’s complex heritage, British and Portuguese influences, and mixture of cultures and religions make it a diverse place, with many different cuisines, cultural attractions and historic sites to explore. It’s no wonder that this city is becoming one of Travelation’s most popular destinations.

Museums and Galleries

The Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, or Prince of Wales Museum, is Mumbai’s largest and most comprehensive. The museum features exhibits from all over India, including Indus Valley sculptures and a contemporary art gallery.

The Nehru Centre features a number of options for those looking for a cultural experience. It’s also a great place to bring children. It features a planetarium, a theater, a gallery and a fascinating Indian history exhibit.

The National Gallery of Modern Art offers art lovers a wonderful collection of works by Indian and international artists, as well as works by Pablo Picasso.

Temples

Mumbai’s namesake temple, Mumbadevi, is dedicated to the patron goddess of the city, and is one of Mumbai’s most prominent, important and popular temples.

Built more than 100 years ago to honor the Hindu god Shiva, the Walkeshwar temple is among Mumbai’s most ancient temples, and is most often visited during full moons. Once a year, the temple hosts a Hindustani classical music festival.

Another of Mumbai’s oldest temples, the Mahalaxmi temple is nestled at the foot of the picturesque Malabar hills. The temple’s unique architecture is well worth seeing, as are the millions of devotees who visit the temple each month.

Attractions

If you’re willing to trek a bit out to sea, the Elephanta Caves are well worth the trip. Located on an island near Mumbai in the Oman Sea, these caves showcase an incredible array of sculptural masterpieces dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva.

One of Mumbai’s most famous landmarks and a stunning example of Indo-Saracenic architecture, the Gateway to India sits in South Mumbai, facing the Mumbai harbor, as an example of the city’s colonial past.

A journey down Marine Drive will give you a beautiful glimpse of Mumbai’s coastline. Watch the sun set over the ocean, or take in coastline’s famed art deco architecture.

 

Set in the Malabar Hills, across from the Kamala Nehru National Park, Mumbai’s Hanging Gardens feature manicured hedges in the shapes of animals, as well as a spectacular view of the Arabian Sea at sunset.

Beyond its numerous attractions, the city of Mumbai also hosts many colorful festivals throughout the year. It also offers numerous places to sample local cuisines. For those who enjoy shopping, Mumbai provides many options from ancient bazaars to modern malls.

If you’re planning a trip to Mumbai, trust Travelation to help get you there. The site offers the best rates and the most comprehensive options for your trip.

Travelation Is Unmatched in Pricing

August 8, 2013 Posted by admin

There are hundreds of “low cost” travel websites on the Internet. Choosing the right one for your travel plans can be confusing. How do you know that you are really getting great prices without searching dozens of websites? Travelation takes that worry away with its unmatched low prices and exceptional customer service. When customers book their travel with Travelation, they can be confident that they are receiving the best fares on airline tickets, rental cars, hotel rooms and even cruises. Travelation is so sure that it has the best prices that it even offers a low-price guarantee.

 

Travelation Guarantees the Lowest Price

 

Any company can claim it has the lowest prices for travel, but that doesn’t mean it really does. Many travelers learn this the hard way. They book “best deal” airline tickets, hotel rooms and rental cars only to find out too late that they could have received a much better deal on another site. Travelation takes this worry away with its “Lowest Price Guarantee.” Customers receive this guarantee automatically when they book travel with Travelation. If a customer finds a lower price on the same travel within 24 hours of booking, the company will automatically refund the difference in price. This is the easiest way to ensure that customers have the lowest travel prices every time they book.

 

Travelation Believes in Customer Service

 

The online travel site Travelation takes pride in providing friendly, reliable customer service. In addition to providing the lowest prices on airfare, accommodations and rental cars, the company’s customer service representatives are always on hand to help customers with any travel issues. These professionals are trained to help people plan and book their travel plans quickly and easily and without the hassles of some of the other “budget” websites. The user-friendly format and great customer support ensure that everyone who uses this travel booking service will receive the lowest prices and best service.

 

Travelation Partners to Get Travel Discounts

 

How does Travelation manage to consistently have the lowest prices on travel components such as airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, vacation packages and even cruises? The answer is simple: Travelation partners with hundreds of companies to ensure that customers have access to the largest base of discounts possible. Some other “cheap” travel websites work with only a few partners and are limited in the prices and destinations they can offer. Travelation, on the other hand, gives travel discounts consistently on a large variety of destinations and services through its extensive network of travel partners.