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River Cruise Newsletter

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River Cruise Newsletter Dated July 25, 2016

Dear Vacations To Go Customer,

I'm writing today at the end of a European vacation that took me to London, Tenerife, Madrid and Monte Carlo.

Despite the strong dollar, travel to Europe from America is off somewhat this year, due primarily to the fear of terrorism. It's understandable that some people are afraid to travel after a terrorist attack, but I'm not one of them.

Travel is a right and a privilege that none of us should be denied. There's an immense and incredible world out there, calling out to be explored, and only so much time in which to see it.

Anyone who has vacationed internationally knows that travel, above all other things, builds bridges between countries, cultures, religions, races and individuals. Everyone at Vacations To Go feels blessed to be part of such an amazing industry, and it is an honor to be trusted to annually help more than 700,000 customers see the best that the world has to offer.

If the number of Americans in Europe this summer is a little lower than usual, I certainly couldn't tell it from the packed streets, cafes and tourist attractions everywhere I went.

I stood in line for an hour to enter Westminster Abbey in London, one of my favorite places, and I shudder to think how long the queue might have been if it hadn't been raining.

I took the enjoyable, self-guided audio tour there, as I did at the Tower of London, another of my favorites, and stopped afterward for a pint at the colorful Hung, Drawn and Quartered pub.

Madrid was equally busy, with bustling squares and streets and vibrant nightlife on rooftop bars. Outdoor cafes were packed starting at 10 p.m., not coincidentally about the time the 100-degree heat of the summer day begins to wane. Bring on the tapas and ice-cold sangria!

On Tenerife, largest of the Canary Islands, I floated just offshore with a dozen pilot whales (there year-round) and a stray humpback whale, usually seen in February in those waters. I hiked through and around the spectacular, sheer cliffs of Los Gigantes, which rise from the sea to a height of 2,600 feet, took a helicopter tour of the island and rode a cable car to the top of El Teide, a 12,000-foot active volcano.

Tenerife's breathtaking natural beauty is on display just far enough off the beaten path to allow tourists to escape the crowds, even in summer.

I then flew to Nice and was shuttled to nearby Monte Carlo. A couple of days later, I heard the horrific news that someone had driven a truck into a crowd of children, women and men along the oceanfront in Nice.

Initial suspicions were quickly confirmed when it became clear that the crime was the act of another jihadist lunatic. The target was not just the good people on the Promenade des Anglais, or the people of Nice, or the people of France, but people who live free from tyranny, anywhere on Earth.

At least 84 killed, more than 100 injured, a mile-long trail of carnage and cruelty.

I resolved then to visit the Promenade to pay my respects, and here I am.

Today, along the Cote d'Azur, sunlight glistens off the water and a lone swimmer back strokes against the tide. Families spread their blankets on the rocky beach and children play at the water's edge.

But only a few steps away, on the pedestrian promenade, a memorial has sprouted and the city publicly grieves. People speak in hushed tones or not at all, hugging, crying, consoling.

Scattered amid thousands of flower bouquets and handwritten cards, there is a heart-wrenching display of ownerless toys and tiny stuffed animals. Candles flicker for those whose lights have been extinguished.

We will never know what all those children might have done with their lives, the songs they might have sung, the books they might have written, the light they might have brought to the darkness. All of that potential was swept away by the pointless act of a misguided coward.

The memorial has spread across the wide boulevard to the park, where it continues to grow at a rapid rate. The outpouring of love and goodwill from people of all nationalities is touching and inspiring.

This is a tribute to those who lost their lives and to those who lost loved ones, to be sure, but it also seems to me to be a tribute to what is good in the world.

A prayer for Nice is a prayer for the world.

Alan Fox
Chairman & CEO

To see photos of the Nice memorials, please click here.

Here are this week's Top 15 River Cruises. All prices are per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability.

1) Delightful Danube & Prague, 10 days with Uniworld. Travels between Budapest and Prague. Fly for free from select gateways. Starting at $3,349. Departures from April 19 through November 6, 2017.

2) Short Break in Venice, 5 days with CroisiEurope. Begins and ends in Venice. Save 10%. Starting at $1,263. Departs September 2, 2016.

3) Antebellum South, 8 days with American Queen Steamboat Company. Travels between New Orleans and Memphis. Save $600 to $1,000 per couple, plus enjoy free shore excursions and more. Starting at $1,899. Departures from March 27 through November 13, 2017.

4) Holiday - Christmas Markets, 8 days with American Queen Steamboat Company. Travels between Memphis and New Orleans. Save $1,000 per couple, plus enjoy free shore excursions and more. Starting at $2,149. Departs December 5, 12 & 19, 2016. 

5) Secrets of the Douro, 8 days with Emerald Waterways. Begins and ends in Porto. Fly from $995 per person, plus receive a 200 euro onboard credit. Starting at $2,195. Departures from April 8 through October 28, 2017. 

6) Tulips of Northern Holland, 8 days with Avalon Waterways. Begins and ends in Amsterdam. Save 20%. Starting at $2,549. Departures from April 2 through May 14, 2017. 

7) Castles Along the Rhine, 8 days with Uniworld. Travels between Amsterdam and Basel. Fly for free from select gateways. Starting at $2,649. Departures from March 15 through November 15, 2017.

8) Danube Dreams, 10 days with Avalon Waterways. Begins in Prague and ends in Budapest. Save 20%. Starting at $2,739. Departures from April 9 through October 29, 2017. 

9) The Enchanting Rhine, 8 days with AmaWaterways. Travels between Amsterdam and Basel. Save $500 to $1,500 per couple. Starting at $2,799. Departures from August 1 through November 21, 2016.

10) Gems of Northern Italy, 10 days with Uniworld. Begins in Milan and ends in Venice. Fly for free from select gateways. Starting at $3,749. Departures from March 31 through November 3, 2017.

11) Rhine Getaway, 8 days with Viking River Cruises. Travels between Basel and Amsterdam. Fly for free from select gateways, plus companion cruises for free. Starting at $3,948. Departures from March 18 through December 29, 2017. 

12) Golden Treasures of Myanmar, 11 days with AmaWaterways. Travels between Mandalay and Pyay. Save $1,000 per couple. Starting at $4,499. Departures from September 12 through December 1, 2016. 

13) Timeless Wonders of Vietnam, Cambodia & the Mekong, 15 days with Uniworld. Travels between Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Save $1,000 per couple. Starting at $5,359. Departures from January 3 through December 29, 2017. 

14) Danube's Capitals & Wachau Valley, 11 days with Crystal River Cruises. Begins and ends in Vienna. Companion cruises for free. Starting at $7,290. Departures from August 13 through November 12, 2016. 

15) Grand European Tour, 15 days with Viking River Cruises. Travels between Amsterdam and Budapest. Fly for free from select gateways, plus companion cruises for free. Starting at $7,748. Departures from April 3 through November 4, 2017.

Customers in the US and Canada can call us toll-free at 800-510-4002. For a list of our other toll-free numbers worldwide, click here.

For savings of up to 82% on ocean cruises, click here.
To save up to 40% with escorted and independent tours, click here.
For discounts of up to 50% at hotels and all-inclusive resorts, click here.
For the lowest rates on Africa safaris from budget to luxury in quality, click here.

Please e-mail me your comments, suggestions and questions at and I will respond the same day.

If you enjoy our newsletter, please forward this email to family and friends.


Alan Fox
Chairman & CEO

  800-510-4002 OR

Open Mon-Fri 7am to 10pm, Sat 8am to 8pm, Sun 9am to 8pm, CDT

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