Greek cruise

This spring, take that Greek cruise you’ve always wanted during a trip April 4 to 11 organized by Meyer Travel.

Cruise stops include the Cycladic island of Mykonos, the Turkish port of Kusadsi (optional tour to Ephesus), Patmos (home of the grotto where St. John wrote Revelations), the historical Greek island of Rhodes, and Iraklion, the capital of Crete (with optional tour to the Minoan palace Knossos, the most famous palace from the Minoan culture established approximately 1700 B.C.).

The trip also includes a pre-half-day tour of Athens and free time for shopping.

The cost is $1,799, double occupancy, for an inside cabin (outside cabins are also available), which includes round-trip airfare from Frankfurt, Germany, three nights’ accommodation in Athens, four nights on the cruise ship with all meals, guided excursions per itinerary, group transfers and services of guides.

For more details, call Katie Meyer in the States at 916-786-3708 or e-mail her at The European contact is Michael Curley at (+49) (0) 6384-514838 or e-mail

Paris sales — ooh la la!

On Wednesday, stores in Paris began their biannual sales, which last six weeks.

More than 1,000 shops take part in Soldes By Paris, a tourist office initiative promoting January as the month of tourist shopping. Retailers from big department stores to tiny boutiques are offering reductions of as much as 70 per cent.

French authorities standardize the January sales, meaning that shops across the country are only allowed to open to bargain-hunters at authorized times. Miss these sales and you’ll have to wait for the summer soldes. See more at and select "Soldes By Paris."

Homecoming Scotland

Scotland’s Homecoming year, created to mark the 250th anniversary of the country’s national poet, Robert Burns, opens with a weekend of celebration throughout the nation on Jan. 23-25.

The village of Alloway, Burns’ birthplace in east central Scotland, becomes a focal point for the celebrations beginning Jan. 24 with Iconic Burns, a visual tribute in which locations including Burns Cottage, The Brig O’ Doon and The Auld Kirk will be brought to life. Free tickets are available by registering at before Jan. 11.

Alloway also will host the Jan. 25 Homecoming Burns Supper, overlooking the Brig O’ Doon. It will be a centerpiece for The World Famous Burns Supper Celebration, in which Burns suppers around the world will link up online at www.burnssupper to establish a world record for the greatest number of Burns suppers ever held.

Another highlight of the weekend is Burns Light on Jan. 25, a torchlit procession winding through the historic heart of Dumfries, where Burns spent the latter part of his life. The finale takes place at the River Nith with entertainment and a 49-foot-high Burns-themed fire sculpture.

Find more details on the year’s events at

Best betsENGLAND: Boat lovers will want to head to London for the annual London Boat Show at the ExCel Centre, which runs Friday through Jan. 18. Check out the 500 exhibitors showing everything from power boats to deck equipment and offering vacations and sailing courses. In addition you can play marine games in the interactive Deck Zone, explore the British Navy’s HMS Westminster, be entertained with a fashion show and musical events, discuss classic boat restoration with those on the Cutty Sark Restoration Project or try your skills with brushboarding, a multi-board cross-training activity.

The show is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. with a late-night opening on Jan. 15 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost 15 pounds (about $22) for adults and are free for children age 15 and younger when accompanied by an adult. After 4 p.m. tickets cost 5 pounds. Find more details at

FRANCE: More than 3,526 dogs will descend on Paris’ Parc Floral de Paris in the Bois de Vincennes this weekend for the Paris Dog Show. Three hundred races, featuring Airedale terriers to whippets, will be run at the show, whose aim this year is to show the richness and diversity of dog breeds. Talk to breeders and owners, visit the exhibitor stands and watch the dog judging as the canines go through their paces.

The show opens at 8:45 a.m. both days. Daily tickets cost 8 euros for adults and are free for children age 12 and under. Dogs not participating in the show will not be admitted. Details at (in French).

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