Chinese New Year Deals - The Year of Rat has arrived!





Chinese New Year Deals - The Year of Rat has arrived!

Special deals manually selected for our readers and followers :

Big Savings Big Escape: Enjoy Up to 15% Discount on Stay + 20% Off on Dining + 2,888 Bonus Points- Millennium Hotels

Celebrate Chinese New Year with big savings at Millennium Hotels. Book at any participating hotels around the world and you'll get up to 15% off your stay as a My Millennium member. And with an additional 20% off dining* for members during your stay, you'll send your taste buds on an adventure too. That's not all - receive 2,888 Bonus Points to kick start an auspicious and prosperous New Year!

Chinese New Year: Save Up to 20% on Stays- Millennium Hotels & Resorts, China

Millennium Hotels and Resorts in Greater China will offer the guests a personalized experience during the Chinese New Year designed to provide with the traditional celebrations and authentic dining delights. Book now and save up to 20% on your stays. It also includes: -10% extra discount for all My Millennium members -High-speed multi-device Wi-Fi -My Millennium Points

Italian Riviera, Monte Carlo & the South of France 

Italian Riviera, Monte Carlo & the South of France - 10 Days with Return Coach Travel and Ferry Crossings - 7 Nights stay at a Hotel in Diano Marina - Free bar (7pm-10pm) - Multiple excursions including Monaco and Monte Carlo - Prices from just £699pp!

Winter Sales, Up to 55% off - Be Live Hotels, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Caribbean
Whether you want some last minute winter holidays or to plan your next summer trip, you'll find what you're looking for at Be Live Hotels. Check all available offers and save up to 55% off your hotel in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Dominican Republic, Cuba and Colombia.

Japan Tour Savings- Save up to £400pp
Discover Japan in 2020 Visit the gorgeous landscapes and bustling streets of Japan and experience a country rich in history, nature and culture. Save up to £400 per person on selected Japan tours, including our bestselling Japan Uncovered tour and visit during the beautiful Cherry Blossom season.

Lunar New Year Promotion: Lucky Draw!
In total 4 rounds of lucky draw, users can submit email address to participate, winners will be selected randomly by the system within this pool when each round ends. Winners could win a hotel free stay voucher, and the prize will be sent to their email account

Spin the wheel and win up to 100% off your booking - Be Live Hotels, Spain and Portugal
Take your chance to stay for free at Be Live hotels thanks to the Prize Wheel! Complete your booking with one of the selected offers, spin the wheel and discover your special discount percentage from 0 to 100%. You will be given the discounted amount after completing check-in at the hotel.




Chinese New Year Deals - The Year of Rat has arrived!

Special deals manually selected for our readers and followers :

Big Savings Big Escape: Enjoy Up to 15% Discount on Stay + 20% Off on Dining + 2,888 Bonus Points- Millennium Hotels

Celebrate Chinese New Year with big savings at Millennium Hotels. Book at any participating hotels around the world and you'll get up to 15% off your stay as a My Millennium member. And with an additional 20% off dining* for members during your stay, you'll send your taste buds on an adventure too. That's not all - receive 2,888 Bonus Points to kick start an auspicious and prosperous New Year!

Chinese New Year: Save Up to 20% on Stays- Millennium Hotels & Resorts, China

Millennium Hotels and Resorts in Greater China will offer the guests a personalized experience during the Chinese New Year designed to provide with the traditional celebrations and authentic dining delights. Book now and save up to 20% on your stays. It also includes: -10% extra discount for all My Millennium members -High-speed multi-device Wi-Fi -My Millennium Points

Italian Riviera, Monte Carlo & the South of France 

Italian Riviera, Monte Carlo & the South of France - 10 Days with Return Coach Travel and Ferry Crossings - 7 Nights stay at a Hotel in Diano Marina - Free bar (7pm-10pm) - Multiple excursions including Monaco and Monte Carlo - Prices from just £699pp!

Winter Sales, Up to 55% off - Be Live Hotels, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Caribbean
Whether you want some last minute winter holidays or to plan your next summer trip, you'll find what you're looking for at Be Live Hotels. Check all available offers and save up to 55% off your hotel in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Dominican Republic, Cuba and Colombia.

Japan Tour Savings- Save up to £400pp
Discover Japan in 2020 Visit the gorgeous landscapes and bustling streets of Japan and experience a country rich in history, nature and culture. Save up to £400 per person on selected Japan tours, including our bestselling Japan Uncovered tour and visit during the beautiful Cherry Blossom season.

Lunar New Year Promotion: Lucky Draw!
In total 4 rounds of lucky draw, users can submit email address to participate, winners will be selected randomly by the system within this pool when each round ends. Winners could win a hotel free stay voucher, and the prize will be sent to their email account

Spin the wheel and win up to 100% off your booking - Be Live Hotels, Spain and Portugal
Take your chance to stay for free at Be Live hotels thanks to the Prize Wheel! Complete your booking with one of the selected offers, spin the wheel and discover your special discount percentage from 0 to 100%. You will be given the discounted amount after completing check-in at the hotel.

City of Karditsa the heart of Greece

City of Karditsa the heart of Greece

City of Karditsa the heart of Greece


The regional section of Karditsa covers the largest part of the Thessaliotida of the historical period, and it was continuously populated from the Paleolithic age, as proven by archaeological findings. From the pre Hellenic tribes the Pelasgs, Minyes, Aeolians, from Viotia and Thesaaly, Dolopes and and Athamanes are mentioned to have lived in the region.

The spread of Christianity in the are of Karditsa was made by Herodeon, a relative of the Disciple Paul. A Paleo-Christian basilica of the 5th BC century has been located in the settlement of Filia, next to the pre-Christian sanctuary of Itonia Athena.

In the late Byzantine period, Fanari with its famous castle is the most important settlement in the region as it is strategically located, controlling the communications passage between Epirus and Thessaly. In the long Turkish Occupation period Fanari continued to be the military, administrative and religious center of the region.

The unbearable slavery and the constant desire for freedom led the Greeks of the region to successive uprisings. In 1600-1601 the first organized uprising lead by the Metropolite of Larissa Dionysio the Philosopher took place. However this movement failed and as a result many people from Agrafa were killed including the Archbishop of Fanari. After other several uprisings in 1770, 1821, 1854, 1866, 1878 and finally 1881 Thesally joined Greece. After the liberation, Karidtsa became a province of the prefecture of Trikala and was divided in 13 municipalities.

With a population close to 40000. Karditsa is the fourth city of Thessaly, its foundation is placed in the late Byzantine period as its name is not Turkish and therefore it existed before the Turkish Occupation in West Thessaly in 1393. As settlement it was initially small and did not have anything extraordinary.  From the 17th century on Karditsa is mentioned in monastery protheses offered by its inhabitants and indirectly in 1677 in the letters of Evgenios Giannulis Etolos. In 1668 the well known ottoman traveller Elviya Tselebi describes Karditsa as the most important commercial center of the southwest Thessaly.

With the integration of Thessaly to Greece in 1881 and the departure of turks who made up half of the population, Jews and people from Sterea Ellada rush to settle in Karditsa. Through out its history plenty of references and descriptions of the city by Greek and foreign travellers  and writes can be found.

In the early 20th century the modernization of the city is fast, it has already four Primary Schools, a Greek School, a High School and all the necessary agencies while it does not feel so isolated once the railway of Thessaly started its operation.  The efforts to improve the living conditions as well the modernization of the city continued in years that followed despite the negative effects of the Occupation and Civil War period.

Today visitor will get to see a modern bustling city, with gentle inhabitants, good city planning, beautiful buildings, many shops, sports facilities and squares where both young and older people go on daily basis. Karditsa has a network of 4km urban and 10km peri-urban bicycle track.

The Eleftherias Square is the main square of the city with plenty of shops of every kind. Its trademark is the fountain, the work of sculptress Nella Gollanda and the statues showing the Muses Erato, Thalia and Cleo as well the Grace Aglaia.

Close by to the north is the Ethnikis Antistasis Square better known as the Dikastrion Square taking its name from the imposing Court House located here.  On the southern end of the square, on Iekeziel Street, is the renovated two stories Metropoilitan Bishop's Mansion.  In 1924 was bought by the Monastery of Korona and used the seat of the Metropolis of Thessaly and Fanariofersala.

At the crossroads of Iekeziel Street and A Papandreu Street is the Town Hall. The Popular Library Athena is housed on its second floor.  The Academy of Athens has awarded the Library an honorary diploma in recognition at its social contribution. Great personalities of arts and letters such as Gianni Ritsos, Zisis Skaros, Nikiforos Vrettakos, Dimitris Gioldasis  and many others were throughout time part of various events organized by the Library.

The impressive neoclassical building on the corner of Karaiskaki and Blatsouka Street is the hotel Arni, created by Konstantinis Tertipis in 1921, who's brother was Dimitrios Tertipis one of the leaders of the revolution of 1878. The building had an elaborate dome, which collapsed in the strong earthquake of 1954.

Opposite the city shopping center the bust of the hero of the revolution of 1821 Georgios Karaiskakis can be observed, work of the Athenian sculptor Nik Georganti. Right across it, the two storey stone building of the National Bank is located, a 1910 construction.

The building of the Dimotiki Agora (Municipal Market) at the end of Valvi Street is a real jewel for the city of Karditsa. It was build with cement, metal and glass between 1925 and 1930 when Asterios Allamanis was mayor, based on a design he brought from Paris. In 1922 was included in the European Architectural Heritage Monuments list by a european committee. The latest renovation of the building took place in 1998 and its use has given the city a space for cultural activities.  The Museum of the Photography and Cinematography Club of Karditsa is housed on ground floor.

Opposite the Municipal Market is the factory of the Old Electrical, built in 1910 and starting its operation in the same year supplying electricity to the city of Karidtsa. The complex consists of a ground floor building that was the engine room and a two stories building. It remained in operation until 1957.

The Metropolitan church of Saints Konstantinos and Eleni is at the beginning of Iezekiel Street in Pafsylip, with construction starting in 1887 and finished 23 years later. It is exclusively built with stones carried on carriages from the riverside areas of Mitropoli. The church courtyard is adorned with busts of the heroes of the history of Thessaly.

The famous Pafsylypon park is an extraordinary green spot and an oasis of coolness during the hot summer months. The Plastira square on its southern part is dominated by the statue of Nikolaos Plastiras, the illustrious child of Karditsa, made by the sculptor Stelios Triantis.

Opposite the park, the Folklore Museum established in 1982, can be visited by tourists. The objective of the museum is not only to present the existing material but also to preserve and save any kind of historical testimony and to inform the history loving public through a wide range of events.

The Municipal Gallery of Karditsa, on the corner of the streets Vasiardani and V. Tzella, was established in 1993. The four storey building includes three exhibition areas for permanent collections, one hall for periodic exhibitions, a multiple hall and a library.

The Archaeological Museum was built in the place of the old hospital of the city of Karditsa. Located opposite the Municipal Gallery, includes a large number of archaeological items most of them coming from the warehouses of the Museum of Volos.

At the exit of the city towards Trikala there are many school facilities among which the most known are the Technological Educational Institutions and the Veterinary School of the University of Thessaly.

Karditsa has a lot to show in the field of culture. Further more there are many music and dance schools, theatrical and visual art workshops. Theatrical performances are also given during the summer months in the theatre of Mitropoli by groups from all over Greece.


City of Karditsa the heart of Greece

City of Karditsa the heart of Greece


The regional section of Karditsa covers the largest part of the Thessaliotida of the historical period, and it was continuously populated from the Paleolithic age, as proven by archaeological findings. From the pre Hellenic tribes the Pelasgs, Minyes, Aeolians, from Viotia and Thesaaly, Dolopes and and Athamanes are mentioned to have lived in the region.

The spread of Christianity in the are of Karditsa was made by Herodeon, a relative of the Disciple Paul. A Paleo-Christian basilica of the 5th BC century has been located in the settlement of Filia, next to the pre-Christian sanctuary of Itonia Athena.

In the late Byzantine period, Fanari with its famous castle is the most important settlement in the region as it is strategically located, controlling the communications passage between Epirus and Thessaly. In the long Turkish Occupation period Fanari continued to be the military, administrative and religious center of the region.

The unbearable slavery and the constant desire for freedom led the Greeks of the region to successive uprisings. In 1600-1601 the first organized uprising lead by the Metropolite of Larissa Dionysio the Philosopher took place. However this movement failed and as a result many people from Agrafa were killed including the Archbishop of Fanari. After other several uprisings in 1770, 1821, 1854, 1866, 1878 and finally 1881 Thesally joined Greece. After the liberation, Karidtsa became a province of the prefecture of Trikala and was divided in 13 municipalities.

With a population close to 40000. Karditsa is the fourth city of Thessaly, its foundation is placed in the late Byzantine period as its name is not Turkish and therefore it existed before the Turkish Occupation in West Thessaly in 1393. As settlement it was initially small and did not have anything extraordinary.  From the 17th century on Karditsa is mentioned in monastery protheses offered by its inhabitants and indirectly in 1677 in the letters of Evgenios Giannulis Etolos. In 1668 the well known ottoman traveller Elviya Tselebi describes Karditsa as the most important commercial center of the southwest Thessaly.

With the integration of Thessaly to Greece in 1881 and the departure of turks who made up half of the population, Jews and people from Sterea Ellada rush to settle in Karditsa. Through out its history plenty of references and descriptions of the city by Greek and foreign travellers  and writes can be found.

In the early 20th century the modernization of the city is fast, it has already four Primary Schools, a Greek School, a High School and all the necessary agencies while it does not feel so isolated once the railway of Thessaly started its operation.  The efforts to improve the living conditions as well the modernization of the city continued in years that followed despite the negative effects of the Occupation and Civil War period.

Today visitor will get to see a modern bustling city, with gentle inhabitants, good city planning, beautiful buildings, many shops, sports facilities and squares where both young and older people go on daily basis. Karditsa has a network of 4km urban and 10km peri-urban bicycle track.

The Eleftherias Square is the main square of the city with plenty of shops of every kind. Its trademark is the fountain, the work of sculptress Nella Gollanda and the statues showing the Muses Erato, Thalia and Cleo as well the Grace Aglaia.

Close by to the north is the Ethnikis Antistasis Square better known as the Dikastrion Square taking its name from the imposing Court House located here.  On the southern end of the square, on Iekeziel Street, is the renovated two stories Metropoilitan Bishop's Mansion.  In 1924 was bought by the Monastery of Korona and used the seat of the Metropolis of Thessaly and Fanariofersala.

At the crossroads of Iekeziel Street and A Papandreu Street is the Town Hall. The Popular Library Athena is housed on its second floor.  The Academy of Athens has awarded the Library an honorary diploma in recognition at its social contribution. Great personalities of arts and letters such as Gianni Ritsos, Zisis Skaros, Nikiforos Vrettakos, Dimitris Gioldasis  and many others were throughout time part of various events organized by the Library.

The impressive neoclassical building on the corner of Karaiskaki and Blatsouka Street is the hotel Arni, created by Konstantinis Tertipis in 1921, who's brother was Dimitrios Tertipis one of the leaders of the revolution of 1878. The building had an elaborate dome, which collapsed in the strong earthquake of 1954.

Opposite the city shopping center the bust of the hero of the revolution of 1821 Georgios Karaiskakis can be observed, work of the Athenian sculptor Nik Georganti. Right across it, the two storey stone building of the National Bank is located, a 1910 construction.

The building of the Dimotiki Agora (Municipal Market) at the end of Valvi Street is a real jewel for the city of Karditsa. It was build with cement, metal and glass between 1925 and 1930 when Asterios Allamanis was mayor, based on a design he brought from Paris. In 1922 was included in the European Architectural Heritage Monuments list by a european committee. The latest renovation of the building took place in 1998 and its use has given the city a space for cultural activities.  The Museum of the Photography and Cinematography Club of Karditsa is housed on ground floor.

Opposite the Municipal Market is the factory of the Old Electrical, built in 1910 and starting its operation in the same year supplying electricity to the city of Karidtsa. The complex consists of a ground floor building that was the engine room and a two stories building. It remained in operation until 1957.

The Metropolitan church of Saints Konstantinos and Eleni is at the beginning of Iezekiel Street in Pafsylip, with construction starting in 1887 and finished 23 years later. It is exclusively built with stones carried on carriages from the riverside areas of Mitropoli. The church courtyard is adorned with busts of the heroes of the history of Thessaly.

The famous Pafsylypon park is an extraordinary green spot and an oasis of coolness during the hot summer months. The Plastira square on its southern part is dominated by the statue of Nikolaos Plastiras, the illustrious child of Karditsa, made by the sculptor Stelios Triantis.

Opposite the park, the Folklore Museum established in 1982, can be visited by tourists. The objective of the museum is not only to present the existing material but also to preserve and save any kind of historical testimony and to inform the history loving public through a wide range of events.

The Municipal Gallery of Karditsa, on the corner of the streets Vasiardani and V. Tzella, was established in 1993. The four storey building includes three exhibition areas for permanent collections, one hall for periodic exhibitions, a multiple hall and a library.

The Archaeological Museum was built in the place of the old hospital of the city of Karditsa. Located opposite the Municipal Gallery, includes a large number of archaeological items most of them coming from the warehouses of the Museum of Volos.

At the exit of the city towards Trikala there are many school facilities among which the most known are the Technological Educational Institutions and the Veterinary School of the University of Thessaly.

Karditsa has a lot to show in the field of culture. Further more there are many music and dance schools, theatrical and visual art workshops. Theatrical performances are also given during the summer months in the theatre of Mitropoli by groups from all over Greece.


This week cruise offers January edition

This week cruise offers

Inspired by arranging a gathering voyage for family or companions?

Booking a gathering journey with our partner DirectFerries most likely has its points of interest. Whether its complimentary chocolate and champagne, a private locally available mixed drink gathering or a free billet, Alotoftrips.com in association with DirectFerries and CruiseDirect can offer you uncommon enhancements altered for your gathering. All it takes to qualify is a gathering voyaging together in 8 or more staterooms.


Save up to 40% with Fred. Olsen's Warmer Cruising offers

Enjoy a special saving of up to 40% when you book your next cruise now from a selection of autumn and winter escapes departing between October 2019 and March 2020, with Fred. Olsen’s Warmer Cruising offers.

• MSC Cruises: Med Sailing from Barcelona On-Board New Ship w/Flights & Tips From £735

P&O: 14 Nt Summer Mediterranean Cruise from Southampton From £1,199

Mexican Riviera Cruise w/Flights, 4 Star LA & Vegas Stay From £1,249
This week cruise offers

Inspired by arranging a gathering voyage for family or companions?

Booking a gathering journey with our partner DirectFerries most likely has its points of interest. Whether its complimentary chocolate and champagne, a private locally available mixed drink gathering or a free billet, Alotoftrips.com in association with DirectFerries and CruiseDirect can offer you uncommon enhancements altered for your gathering. All it takes to qualify is a gathering voyaging together in 8 or more staterooms.


Save up to 40% with Fred. Olsen's Warmer Cruising offers

Enjoy a special saving of up to 40% when you book your next cruise now from a selection of autumn and winter escapes departing between October 2019 and March 2020, with Fred. Olsen’s Warmer Cruising offers.

• MSC Cruises: Med Sailing from Barcelona On-Board New Ship w/Flights & Tips From £735

P&O: 14 Nt Summer Mediterranean Cruise from Southampton From £1,199

Mexican Riviera Cruise w/Flights, 4 Star LA & Vegas Stay From £1,249

Finding inner peace in South Korea


South Korea is a country rich in unforgettable experiences, from eating kimchi pancakes washed down with wine rice to finding hidden temples in the mountains, and from exploring palaces and temples to kicking back on the beach and skiing on the slopes that hosted the Winter Olympics.

You should start your trip from the capital city Seoul,  it combines teahouses and cat cafes, street food and haute cuisine, temples and K pop concerts.

Gyeongbokgung is Seoul's most important palace originally built in 1395, an impressive structure with ornately painted pagodas, pavilions and palaces spread across across the huge site.

Close by Bukhon Hanok Village was once the residential quarter for government official, but today is a mix of private homes, guesthouses, cafes and restaurants.

Check out Seoul's contemporary art scene surrounding Samcheon-ro (Gallery Street) for its numerous galleries. National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art an art deco building, was extended recently and inside its huge halls hosts exhibitions of Korean and international art.
Booking.com

SMTOWN COEX ARTIUM is a modern temple to all things K-pop, with memorable displays and walls of lifesize pop band photos. Korean pop performers are some of the county's biggest icons.

KUKKIWON, known as the World Taek wondo Headquarters - the practice of martial art goes back to centuries, but the first official school opened in Seoul only in 1940.

The streets around Hongik University are always busy at night with buskers staying out late to perform for the crowds.

The long metro journey  to the southern edge of Seoul is worth it to wander along the riverbank to admire the sculptures from Anyang Art Park. One of the highlights are the spiral of mirrors and the spaceship Anyang Peak installation.

Surrounded by spectacular palaces and gardens, the Executive Tower at Lotte Hotel Seoul is one of the newest addition to the city, with the largest club lounge in South Korea. Equipped with a private TechnoGym fitness area, it also features Beautyrest Black, the largest bed in  Sotuh Korea, as well as one of the finest instruments a rare C. Bechstein grand piano.

Just 30 miles north of Seoul, the Demilitarized Zone lest you have a sneak peep into North Korea and explore the history of the dvided korean peninsula. The DMZ is a 2,5 mile-wide-no-man's land that runs 155 miles across the peninsula. It is in place since the Armistice Agreement was signed during the Korean War in 1953, and remains heavily guarded by soldiers from both sides.

Through binoculars you can see residents of Kijeong-dong (the Propaganda Village) working in the fields while kids march of to school. You will so get to have a look at the "Third Tunnel" an unfinished invasion tunnel dug by the North Korean military in 1978. The Joint Security Area, in Panmunjom, is where North and South came face to face on the lines that divides them.

Eating out in Korea is as much about the experiences as the flavour, whether you are grilling your own dinner in a barbecue restaurant or slurping noodles at bustling street food market. Most famous dish is kimchi that comes in more than 180 varieties and is served with every meal.

Another well known culinary delight is bibimbap - rice topped with sauteed veg, followed by bulgogi (the fire meat), - marinated beef or pork cooked DIY style, on a table top grill.

Soraksan National Park a Unesco Biosphere Reserve - home to musk deer, black bears, kestrels and sparrowhawks.  One of Korea's 22 national parks, it covers a swathe of the country's northeastern Gangwon province and is home to several temples, as well as a 48ft-tall Buddha statue. Korean people come to this shrine to pray or make a wish.  The cave where the statue is found was sued by monks since the seventh century.

Bulguksa Temple, one of the South Korea Unesco World Heritage sites was originally completed in 528, but has been destroyed and rebuild several times since then. It is open to guests, who can check in and experience living like a monk for a night.

Busan sits wedged between mountains and the coast, so the sea ie ever present in its surroundings.  South Korea's second city is blessed with beaches, but thats not an excuse to simply lying back on the sand.

You could hit the waves at Songjeong Beach, where surf schools have been springing up in recent times. Or you could try kayaking, activity thats available for free in summer at Gwangalli Beach, as well on the Suyeonggang River, where you get to admire the mountain-backed skyscrapers while you paddle. At Gwangalli and Haeundae there's windsurfing stand-up paddleboarding and water-skiing.

A day at the beach is not the only way to check the city's coastline. Head slightly out of town to find Haedong Yonggungsa Buddhist Temple. one of the city's key landmarks. Originally built in 1376, and restored in 1970,  overlooking the East Sea, safeguarding "The Water Temple".

Jeju island, South Korea's largest island was formed two million years ago, when volcanic Mount Hallasan rose up from the sea, bringing with it a fertile isle marked with  unique geographical features. It's main attraction is Manjaanggul Cave a five-mile long Unesco World Heritage Site, deep under underneath Jeju City,with it's unique lava tube and beautiful ceilings heavy with stalactites and lava blisters. Jeju is home to 5000 haenyeo divers women, who pluck sea food from the ocean floor without air cylinders.

Jeju's natural wind patterns means there's consistently good weather for paragliding. Run off one of the island's hundreds of hills for views of farmlands, pine forests and Mount Halassan rising up from the centre. Just be careful not be taken by the wind to North Korea :)))

For hikers, there's the Olle walking trail network criss-crossing the isle, or for Mount Hallasan fro climbers. For serious hiker there is a reward at the top, the silvery-blue crater alke Baengnokdam, at 6388 ft above sea-level. Bikers can enjoy the 145mile-long bike routealong the coastline is totally flat, whilst offering spectacular views of crashing waves of Jungmun Beach.











South Korea is a country rich in unforgettable experiences, from eating kimchi pancakes washed down with wine rice to finding hidden temples in the mountains, and from exploring palaces and temples to kicking back on the beach and skiing on the slopes that hosted the Winter Olympics.

You should start your trip from the capital city Seoul,  it combines teahouses and cat cafes, street food and haute cuisine, temples and K pop concerts.

Gyeongbokgung is Seoul's most important palace originally built in 1395, an impressive structure with ornately painted pagodas, pavilions and palaces spread across across the huge site.

Close by Bukhon Hanok Village was once the residential quarter for government official, but today is a mix of private homes, guesthouses, cafes and restaurants.

Check out Seoul's contemporary art scene surrounding Samcheon-ro (Gallery Street) for its numerous galleries. National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art an art deco building, was extended recently and inside its huge halls hosts exhibitions of Korean and international art.
Booking.com

SMTOWN COEX ARTIUM is a modern temple to all things K-pop, with memorable displays and walls of lifesize pop band photos. Korean pop performers are some of the county's biggest icons.

KUKKIWON, known as the World Taek wondo Headquarters - the practice of martial art goes back to centuries, but the first official school opened in Seoul only in 1940.

The streets around Hongik University are always busy at night with buskers staying out late to perform for the crowds.

The long metro journey  to the southern edge of Seoul is worth it to wander along the riverbank to admire the sculptures from Anyang Art Park. One of the highlights are the spiral of mirrors and the spaceship Anyang Peak installation.

Surrounded by spectacular palaces and gardens, the Executive Tower at Lotte Hotel Seoul is one of the newest addition to the city, with the largest club lounge in South Korea. Equipped with a private TechnoGym fitness area, it also features Beautyrest Black, the largest bed in  Sotuh Korea, as well as one of the finest instruments a rare C. Bechstein grand piano.

Just 30 miles north of Seoul, the Demilitarized Zone lest you have a sneak peep into North Korea and explore the history of the dvided korean peninsula. The DMZ is a 2,5 mile-wide-no-man's land that runs 155 miles across the peninsula. It is in place since the Armistice Agreement was signed during the Korean War in 1953, and remains heavily guarded by soldiers from both sides.

Through binoculars you can see residents of Kijeong-dong (the Propaganda Village) working in the fields while kids march of to school. You will so get to have a look at the "Third Tunnel" an unfinished invasion tunnel dug by the North Korean military in 1978. The Joint Security Area, in Panmunjom, is where North and South came face to face on the lines that divides them.

Eating out in Korea is as much about the experiences as the flavour, whether you are grilling your own dinner in a barbecue restaurant or slurping noodles at bustling street food market. Most famous dish is kimchi that comes in more than 180 varieties and is served with every meal.

Another well known culinary delight is bibimbap - rice topped with sauteed veg, followed by bulgogi (the fire meat), - marinated beef or pork cooked DIY style, on a table top grill.

Soraksan National Park a Unesco Biosphere Reserve - home to musk deer, black bears, kestrels and sparrowhawks.  One of Korea's 22 national parks, it covers a swathe of the country's northeastern Gangwon province and is home to several temples, as well as a 48ft-tall Buddha statue. Korean people come to this shrine to pray or make a wish.  The cave where the statue is found was sued by monks since the seventh century.

Bulguksa Temple, one of the South Korea Unesco World Heritage sites was originally completed in 528, but has been destroyed and rebuild several times since then. It is open to guests, who can check in and experience living like a monk for a night.

Busan sits wedged between mountains and the coast, so the sea ie ever present in its surroundings.  South Korea's second city is blessed with beaches, but thats not an excuse to simply lying back on the sand.

You could hit the waves at Songjeong Beach, where surf schools have been springing up in recent times. Or you could try kayaking, activity thats available for free in summer at Gwangalli Beach, as well on the Suyeonggang River, where you get to admire the mountain-backed skyscrapers while you paddle. At Gwangalli and Haeundae there's windsurfing stand-up paddleboarding and water-skiing.

A day at the beach is not the only way to check the city's coastline. Head slightly out of town to find Haedong Yonggungsa Buddhist Temple. one of the city's key landmarks. Originally built in 1376, and restored in 1970,  overlooking the East Sea, safeguarding "The Water Temple".

Jeju island, South Korea's largest island was formed two million years ago, when volcanic Mount Hallasan rose up from the sea, bringing with it a fertile isle marked with  unique geographical features. It's main attraction is Manjaanggul Cave a five-mile long Unesco World Heritage Site, deep under underneath Jeju City,with it's unique lava tube and beautiful ceilings heavy with stalactites and lava blisters. Jeju is home to 5000 haenyeo divers women, who pluck sea food from the ocean floor without air cylinders.

Jeju's natural wind patterns means there's consistently good weather for paragliding. Run off one of the island's hundreds of hills for views of farmlands, pine forests and Mount Halassan rising up from the centre. Just be careful not be taken by the wind to North Korea :)))

For hikers, there's the Olle walking trail network criss-crossing the isle, or for Mount Hallasan fro climbers. For serious hiker there is a reward at the top, the silvery-blue crater alke Baengnokdam, at 6388 ft above sea-level. Bikers can enjoy the 145mile-long bike routealong the coastline is totally flat, whilst offering spectacular views of crashing waves of Jungmun Beach.










International Hotel Deals - January Edition



International Hotel Deals of the week


Check out this week selection of top international hotel and getaway deals! Enjoy huge discounts on these amazing new worldwide hotel deals secured exclusively for Alotoftrips members! This week we gathered offers from : France,  Spain, Maleyesia and many more.

January Sales, Up to 57% off - Bluebay Hotels, Spain & Caribbean
On these cold days, the January sales of Bluebay Hotel will warm up your heart: book your next holidays in the sun with Bluebay hotels and get up to 57% off.
- Book until 31st January 2020
- Stay window, room type and applicable board vary according to hotel


  Early Booking 2020, 10% off + Kids stay free - Sirenis Cala Llonga Resort, Ibiza
Book now your summer holidays for 2020 in the hotel Sirenis Cala Llonga in Ibiza, and get 10% off the non-refundable rate. Besides, kids stay for free!
- Offer valid for bookings until 29th February 2020
- Offer valid for stays from 1st May to 31st October 2020
- Up to 2 free kids, from 2 to 11 yo, from 1-24 May and 1-31 October 


Early Booking Summer 2020, Up to 40% Off - La Manga Club, Spain
Plan your summer holidays now at La Manga Club and save up to 40% on the final price. And also, get many other exclusive advantages by booking through the website:
- Best price guarantee
- Extended check-in and check-out (subject to availability)
- 10% discount in restaurants and in treatments and massages in the Wellness Centre.
- Valid for bookings made until 31/01/2020
- Cannot be combined with other promotions
- Subject to availability
- Not applicable for reservations already made
- La Manga Club reserves the right to modify or terminate these promotions at any time.


Complimentary Lounge Access in Malaysia for Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) card holders - Plaza Premium Lounge
Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) cardholders are entitled to 3 complimentary access passes to Plaza Premium Lounge outlets across Malaysia*. Simply present your Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) card to the Plaza Premium Lounge staff upon entry to enjoy the lounge for 3 hours at a time!

Participating Locations: KLIA, KLIA2, Langkawi, Kuching, Kota Kinabalu and Penang
- Offer valid until 31 December 2020
- Subject to availability


  100% discount for Kids - Vila Galé Hotels, Portugal & Brazil
Book your stay in Portugal or Brazil at your favourite Vila Galé hotel, and don't pay for your children!
Children aged up to 12 staying in their parents’ rooms are not charged for accommodation and meals.
- Subject to availability
- The number of children depends on the capacity of the selected room type
- The offer of meals is only provided on a half board or all-inclusive basis, provided that parents are boarding on the same basis


Early Booking, Up to 19% off - Pestana Hotel Group
Book early your next holidays at a Pestana hotel and get up to 19% discount.
The offer includes:
- Breakfast included (only in selected hotels)
- Free Wi-Fi
- SPA access (in hotels with this service)
- Access to the fitness centre (in hotels with this service)
- Special conditions for children
- Valid for reservations until January 31, 2020
- Valid for stays until December 31, 2020
- See participating hotels on Pestana's website


  Four Day Island Tour: Mykonos & Santorini Experience from Athens, 20% off - Keytours, Greece
Explore two of the most popular Greek islands on this 4-day tour and save up to 20% off.
The offer includes:
- Round trip transportation
- Economy boat tickets (numbered seats)
- Accomodation with breakfast on the islands
- Choice of A class or T class hotels
- Offer valid until 29 February 2020
- Subject to availability - Cancel up to 9 day(s) prior the scheduled departure of the experience for a full refund. - For cancellations between 3 and 8 day(s) prior the scheduled departure, there is a 50% cancellation fee. - For cancellations within 2 day(s) of the scheduled departure, there is a 100% cancellation fee.


  Vulcanic Emotion, from €97 - Palace Catania UNA Esperienze, Sicily
Make the best of your holidays in Sicily with this incredible experience Vulcanic Emotion.

Includes:
- 2-night stay at Palace Catania UNA Esperienze
- A la carte breakfast at the panoramic Etnea Roof terrace
- Half day guided excursion on the Etna for two people, including: pick-up at the hotel, the tour of a volcanic cave and a tasting of local specialities in a local farm. A minimum of two participants is required for the tour.
- Free entrance to the hotel fitness room and Turkish bath.
- 15% discount on food and beverage consumption at the bar, restaurant and room service.
- €97 rate is per person and per night
- Offer subject to availability, not retroactive, not combinable with other offers or promotions and subject to change.
- A minimum stay of 2 guests for 2 nights is required


Weekend Offer, Up to 25% off + Exclusive Benefits - Millennium Hotels, UK, France & Italy
Stay at Millennium Hotel in the UK, France or Italy for a minimum of 2 nights between Thursday and Monday, and benefit from Millennium's exclusive Weekend Offer:
- 15% off The Flexible Rate (Additional 10% for My Millennium members)
- 15% discount in all Restaurants (excluding Room Service)
- Late Check-out
- Complimentary High Speed Wifi
- Gym & Spa access Subject to availability in the hotel
- Offer valid until 31st January 2020, for stays starting on Thursday or Friday with a 2 night minimum length of stay.
- This offer cannot be combined with any other offer. No booking fees. Subject to availability. Full credit card prepayment required.
- Offer non-refundable and non-changeable.
- Early check-in from 1pm / Late Check-out at 2 pm, subject to availability



          
300x250_Holidays_ Campaign


International Hotel Deals of the week


Check out this week selection of top international hotel and getaway deals! Enjoy huge discounts on these amazing new worldwide hotel deals secured exclusively for Alotoftrips members! This week we gathered offers from : France,  Spain, Maleyesia and many more.

January Sales, Up to 57% off - Bluebay Hotels, Spain & Caribbean
On these cold days, the January sales of Bluebay Hotel will warm up your heart: book your next holidays in the sun with Bluebay hotels and get up to 57% off.
- Book until 31st January 2020
- Stay window, room type and applicable board vary according to hotel


  Early Booking 2020, 10% off + Kids stay free - Sirenis Cala Llonga Resort, Ibiza
Book now your summer holidays for 2020 in the hotel Sirenis Cala Llonga in Ibiza, and get 10% off the non-refundable rate. Besides, kids stay for free!
- Offer valid for bookings until 29th February 2020
- Offer valid for stays from 1st May to 31st October 2020
- Up to 2 free kids, from 2 to 11 yo, from 1-24 May and 1-31 October 


Early Booking Summer 2020, Up to 40% Off - La Manga Club, Spain
Plan your summer holidays now at La Manga Club and save up to 40% on the final price. And also, get many other exclusive advantages by booking through the website:
- Best price guarantee
- Extended check-in and check-out (subject to availability)
- 10% discount in restaurants and in treatments and massages in the Wellness Centre.
- Valid for bookings made until 31/01/2020
- Cannot be combined with other promotions
- Subject to availability
- Not applicable for reservations already made
- La Manga Club reserves the right to modify or terminate these promotions at any time.


Complimentary Lounge Access in Malaysia for Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) card holders - Plaza Premium Lounge
Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) cardholders are entitled to 3 complimentary access passes to Plaza Premium Lounge outlets across Malaysia*. Simply present your Hap Seng Star (Mercedes-Benz) card to the Plaza Premium Lounge staff upon entry to enjoy the lounge for 3 hours at a time!

Participating Locations: KLIA, KLIA2, Langkawi, Kuching, Kota Kinabalu and Penang
- Offer valid until 31 December 2020
- Subject to availability


  100% discount for Kids - Vila Galé Hotels, Portugal & Brazil
Book your stay in Portugal or Brazil at your favourite Vila Galé hotel, and don't pay for your children!
Children aged up to 12 staying in their parents’ rooms are not charged for accommodation and meals.
- Subject to availability
- The number of children depends on the capacity of the selected room type
- The offer of meals is only provided on a half board or all-inclusive basis, provided that parents are boarding on the same basis


Early Booking, Up to 19% off - Pestana Hotel Group
Book early your next holidays at a Pestana hotel and get up to 19% discount.
The offer includes:
- Breakfast included (only in selected hotels)
- Free Wi-Fi
- SPA access (in hotels with this service)
- Access to the fitness centre (in hotels with this service)
- Special conditions for children
- Valid for reservations until January 31, 2020
- Valid for stays until December 31, 2020
- See participating hotels on Pestana's website


  Four Day Island Tour: Mykonos & Santorini Experience from Athens, 20% off - Keytours, Greece
Explore two of the most popular Greek islands on this 4-day tour and save up to 20% off.
The offer includes:
- Round trip transportation
- Economy boat tickets (numbered seats)
- Accomodation with breakfast on the islands
- Choice of A class or T class hotels
- Offer valid until 29 February 2020
- Subject to availability - Cancel up to 9 day(s) prior the scheduled departure of the experience for a full refund. - For cancellations between 3 and 8 day(s) prior the scheduled departure, there is a 50% cancellation fee. - For cancellations within 2 day(s) of the scheduled departure, there is a 100% cancellation fee.


  Vulcanic Emotion, from €97 - Palace Catania UNA Esperienze, Sicily
Make the best of your holidays in Sicily with this incredible experience Vulcanic Emotion.

Includes:
- 2-night stay at Palace Catania UNA Esperienze
- A la carte breakfast at the panoramic Etnea Roof terrace
- Half day guided excursion on the Etna for two people, including: pick-up at the hotel, the tour of a volcanic cave and a tasting of local specialities in a local farm. A minimum of two participants is required for the tour.
- Free entrance to the hotel fitness room and Turkish bath.
- 15% discount on food and beverage consumption at the bar, restaurant and room service.
- €97 rate is per person and per night
- Offer subject to availability, not retroactive, not combinable with other offers or promotions and subject to change.
- A minimum stay of 2 guests for 2 nights is required


Weekend Offer, Up to 25% off + Exclusive Benefits - Millennium Hotels, UK, France & Italy
Stay at Millennium Hotel in the UK, France or Italy for a minimum of 2 nights between Thursday and Monday, and benefit from Millennium's exclusive Weekend Offer:
- 15% off The Flexible Rate (Additional 10% for My Millennium members)
- 15% discount in all Restaurants (excluding Room Service)
- Late Check-out
- Complimentary High Speed Wifi
- Gym & Spa access Subject to availability in the hotel
- Offer valid until 31st January 2020, for stays starting on Thursday or Friday with a 2 night minimum length of stay.
- This offer cannot be combined with any other offer. No booking fees. Subject to availability. Full credit card prepayment required.
- Offer non-refundable and non-changeable.
- Early check-in from 1pm / Late Check-out at 2 pm, subject to availability



          
300x250_Holidays_ Campaign

From the Adriatic Sea to the Aegean Sea



Start your journey by travelling to picturesque town of Kruja, situated on the side of the mount Qafe Shtame. Walk through the the old restored bazaar to Skanderbeg Castle. The castle was the citadel, from where the Ottomans were successfully resisted for 35 years from 1443 to 1478.

You will also get to see the Skanderbeg square with its beautiful Ethem Bay Mosque and The Clock Tower dated 1821. The Ethem Bay Mosque is stone build with its unique interior and exterior all decorated with frescos. Then walk along the ministerial buildings towards the infamous "Pyramid". This has been built as a tomb for the communist dictator Hoxha.

Albanian national hero, Skanderbeg, in 1444 summoned the leaders of the Albanian clans and led them to unite their forces in the fight against the Turks. After 24 years of fighting against their waste armies, he died of malaria.

Shkodra lake located on the border between Albania and Montenegro is the largest lake on Balkan Peninsula. It has unique ecosystem and is one of Europe's largest bird reserves. The lake is named after Shkodra, one of Albania's oldest and most historic towns. The main pedestrian promenade, created in the 20th century in neoclassical style allows you to explore the city's modern face.

Also make sure you visit the city's castle, Rozafa, dating back to Illyrian times and offering spectacular views. The entrance to this huge castle is located on top of the hill, so there is a 200- metre uphill walk along the steep cobbled path. The fortress majestically towers over the city on a rocky hillside, offers a picturesque view of the surrounding areas and the surrounding three rivers : Drin, Bruna and Kiri.

Kotor is situated in in the most secluded part of Boka Kotorska, dating from from Illyrian period, has developed into an important commercial and artistic centre in the Middle Ages. Many empires battled to take control of the city throughout its long and troubled history. Today with its Square of Arms, Flour Square with Pima and Buca palaces, and the beautiful St. Tryphon Cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Budva is the reigning "tourist capital of Montenegro" for all the right reasons. As one of the Adriatic's Sea oldest citites, Budva's 2500-year history reaches back from the past to offer us a small walled city, where the walls were built straight out of the Adriatic Sea by the Venetians. What we see today is only a fraction of the city's splendour at its height, preserved with loving care by the local residents of Budva who are proud of their long history.

Historic city of Ulcinj, one of the oldest settlements in the Adriatic coast was founded in 5th century BC, and was captured by the Romans from the Illyrians in 163 BC. With the division of the Roman Empire, it became part of the Byzantine Empire. During the Middle Ages, it was under South Slavic rule for a few centuries. In 1405 became part of Republic of Venice and in 1571 part of Ottoman Empire. Ulcinj was ceded to the Principality of Montenegro in 1880. Is a famous destination for tourists, because of its Long Beach, Lake Sas, Ada Bojana Island and for its old Uclinj Castle.

Durres town was found as a Greek colony named Epidamnus in 627 BC. It later became Dyrrachium, an important staging post for the Roman Empire, a major trading center and the main port on the eastern coast of the Adriatic. The ancient city has got many archaeological sites to offer. The biggest amphitheater in Balkans being one of them.

One of the newest museums, is Old Bunker. It is built on three halls and provides an overview of the police force looking as far back as the 1913, a few months after the proclamation of Independence up to the year of 1991, it s history marked by violence, torture, imprisonments and martyrs.

In Elbasan you visit the castle area of ancient Scampis. The town was located on the Roman Road Via Egnatia and still some parts of it are visible today. This was once one of the most important industrial towns of the communistic era.

Ohrid Town - Visit the National Museum, located mainly in the Robev family house, a masterpiece of Ohrid town architecture. Also see the complex of St. Clement's Church, were you can admire the Gallery of Icons from the 11th to 19th centuries, most of which came via donations from Constantinople and Salonica. The Classical Theatre is situated below the Ohrid Fortress and provides an open-air venue for summer concerts, operas and plays. It was built approximately 2000 years ago. Make sure you don't miss the picturesque 9th- century Sveta Sofia church, situated at the foot of the hilly part of Orhid. The cathedral has undergone great change as it was the cathedral church of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, then a mosque and then a storehouse before being transformed back to a church in 1912.

At Ohrid Lake you can also get to enjoy a visit to the Matka Canyon, keep on a eye out for the fascinating caves that can be found within the canyon. Lake Ohrid itself is Europe's oldest lake having formed over three millions years ago.

Debar City - Here you can enjoy a visit to the old church of St. Jovan Bigorski, which is renowned for its very famous iconostas inside. The church is 900 metres uphill from the main road.

Get a motor boat from Ohrid port for a scenic ride around the lake. From the boat you will see the church of St. Jovan Kaneo, and you can take photographs of the recently rebuilt church of St. Clement.  Your boat will take you past the former villa of President Tito, the hotel complexes situated on the shore of the lake and passing to other famous hotels.

Continue to exquisite 10th- century monastery of Sveti Naum on the south side of Lake Ohrid. The monastery traditionally marks the place where the 9th- century missionaries Cyril and Methodius devised the Cyrillic alphabet. The interior of the monastery is decorated with intricate carvings and frescoes.

Also visit the St. Petko's Church, where you can take the "holy water" and see the springs of Black Drin River, where the waters emerge from underground channels.

Thessaloniki was founded in 315 BC by Kassander, the brother-in-law of Alexander the Great. An important trading center in Roman times, and emerging as a leading Byzantine city from the 6th century AD. The city was largely rebuild after a disastrous fire in 1917, but many ancient buildings managed to survive to it. The Archaeological Museum houses a stunning collection of gold and silver objects from the "Royal Tombs" at Vergina, in addition to mosaic and ceramics. Also visit Agios Dimitrios Chuch, a 7th century basilica erected on the site of the martyrdom of St. Denetrios, patron saint of Thessaloniki.

Two huge tombs near the modern village of Vergina have been under excavation since their discovery by Professor Andronikos in 1977, one of the greatest archaeological finds of recent years. The vast wealth of gold and silver treasures uncovered from one of the chambers have led historians to believe it was the tomb of Philip II of Macedonia. The remains of small palace with mosaic floors can be seen, together with Romeu's Tomb, which dates from the 3rd century BC.







Start your journey by travelling to picturesque town of Kruja, situated on the side of the mount Qafe Shtame. Walk through the the old restored bazaar to Skanderbeg Castle. The castle was the citadel, from where the Ottomans were successfully resisted for 35 years from 1443 to 1478.

You will also get to see the Skanderbeg square with its beautiful Ethem Bay Mosque and The Clock Tower dated 1821. The Ethem Bay Mosque is stone build with its unique interior and exterior all decorated with frescos. Then walk along the ministerial buildings towards the infamous "Pyramid". This has been built as a tomb for the communist dictator Hoxha.

Albanian national hero, Skanderbeg, in 1444 summoned the leaders of the Albanian clans and led them to unite their forces in the fight against the Turks. After 24 years of fighting against their waste armies, he died of malaria.

Shkodra lake located on the border between Albania and Montenegro is the largest lake on Balkan Peninsula. It has unique ecosystem and is one of Europe's largest bird reserves. The lake is named after Shkodra, one of Albania's oldest and most historic towns. The main pedestrian promenade, created in the 20th century in neoclassical style allows you to explore the city's modern face.

Also make sure you visit the city's castle, Rozafa, dating back to Illyrian times and offering spectacular views. The entrance to this huge castle is located on top of the hill, so there is a 200- metre uphill walk along the steep cobbled path. The fortress majestically towers over the city on a rocky hillside, offers a picturesque view of the surrounding areas and the surrounding three rivers : Drin, Bruna and Kiri.

Kotor is situated in in the most secluded part of Boka Kotorska, dating from from Illyrian period, has developed into an important commercial and artistic centre in the Middle Ages. Many empires battled to take control of the city throughout its long and troubled history. Today with its Square of Arms, Flour Square with Pima and Buca palaces, and the beautiful St. Tryphon Cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Budva is the reigning "tourist capital of Montenegro" for all the right reasons. As one of the Adriatic's Sea oldest citites, Budva's 2500-year history reaches back from the past to offer us a small walled city, where the walls were built straight out of the Adriatic Sea by the Venetians. What we see today is only a fraction of the city's splendour at its height, preserved with loving care by the local residents of Budva who are proud of their long history.

Historic city of Ulcinj, one of the oldest settlements in the Adriatic coast was founded in 5th century BC, and was captured by the Romans from the Illyrians in 163 BC. With the division of the Roman Empire, it became part of the Byzantine Empire. During the Middle Ages, it was under South Slavic rule for a few centuries. In 1405 became part of Republic of Venice and in 1571 part of Ottoman Empire. Ulcinj was ceded to the Principality of Montenegro in 1880. Is a famous destination for tourists, because of its Long Beach, Lake Sas, Ada Bojana Island and for its old Uclinj Castle.

Durres town was found as a Greek colony named Epidamnus in 627 BC. It later became Dyrrachium, an important staging post for the Roman Empire, a major trading center and the main port on the eastern coast of the Adriatic. The ancient city has got many archaeological sites to offer. The biggest amphitheater in Balkans being one of them.

One of the newest museums, is Old Bunker. It is built on three halls and provides an overview of the police force looking as far back as the 1913, a few months after the proclamation of Independence up to the year of 1991, it s history marked by violence, torture, imprisonments and martyrs.

In Elbasan you visit the castle area of ancient Scampis. The town was located on the Roman Road Via Egnatia and still some parts of it are visible today. This was once one of the most important industrial towns of the communistic era.

Ohrid Town - Visit the National Museum, located mainly in the Robev family house, a masterpiece of Ohrid town architecture. Also see the complex of St. Clement's Church, were you can admire the Gallery of Icons from the 11th to 19th centuries, most of which came via donations from Constantinople and Salonica. The Classical Theatre is situated below the Ohrid Fortress and provides an open-air venue for summer concerts, operas and plays. It was built approximately 2000 years ago. Make sure you don't miss the picturesque 9th- century Sveta Sofia church, situated at the foot of the hilly part of Orhid. The cathedral has undergone great change as it was the cathedral church of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, then a mosque and then a storehouse before being transformed back to a church in 1912.

At Ohrid Lake you can also get to enjoy a visit to the Matka Canyon, keep on a eye out for the fascinating caves that can be found within the canyon. Lake Ohrid itself is Europe's oldest lake having formed over three millions years ago.

Debar City - Here you can enjoy a visit to the old church of St. Jovan Bigorski, which is renowned for its very famous iconostas inside. The church is 900 metres uphill from the main road.

Get a motor boat from Ohrid port for a scenic ride around the lake. From the boat you will see the church of St. Jovan Kaneo, and you can take photographs of the recently rebuilt church of St. Clement.  Your boat will take you past the former villa of President Tito, the hotel complexes situated on the shore of the lake and passing to other famous hotels.

Continue to exquisite 10th- century monastery of Sveti Naum on the south side of Lake Ohrid. The monastery traditionally marks the place where the 9th- century missionaries Cyril and Methodius devised the Cyrillic alphabet. The interior of the monastery is decorated with intricate carvings and frescoes.

Also visit the St. Petko's Church, where you can take the "holy water" and see the springs of Black Drin River, where the waters emerge from underground channels.

Thessaloniki was founded in 315 BC by Kassander, the brother-in-law of Alexander the Great. An important trading center in Roman times, and emerging as a leading Byzantine city from the 6th century AD. The city was largely rebuild after a disastrous fire in 1917, but many ancient buildings managed to survive to it. The Archaeological Museum houses a stunning collection of gold and silver objects from the "Royal Tombs" at Vergina, in addition to mosaic and ceramics. Also visit Agios Dimitrios Chuch, a 7th century basilica erected on the site of the martyrdom of St. Denetrios, patron saint of Thessaloniki.

Two huge tombs near the modern village of Vergina have been under excavation since their discovery by Professor Andronikos in 1977, one of the greatest archaeological finds of recent years. The vast wealth of gold and silver treasures uncovered from one of the chambers have led historians to believe it was the tomb of Philip II of Macedonia. The remains of small palace with mosaic floors can be seen, together with Romeu's Tomb, which dates from the 3rd century BC.





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