Category: Uncategorized

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today we bring you a Q band A we conducted recently with Ginger and Summer of the Outlander Podcast to find out what makes Outlander so special to them and its legions of fans and why you should join us on the best adventure of your life #PodAbroad2019

Q. Why Outlander, what was it that drew you to this amazing series set in our wonderful country?

A. Summer first found the Outlander book series in 1997 when there were only four books. She tried to get me to read them but I didn’t start until 1999. So we have been fans for well over 20 years now.

As for the draw of Outlander, it’s a lot of things: Scotland, history, intrigue, danger, a sexy male protagonist (There’s a reason he’s called the “King of Men.”)

As Diana says, Outlander is the story of a marriage. Though Claire is out of her time, she’s a modern woman. Granted, not contemporary with us, but much closer to us than an 18th-century person. So we feel part of the story and we experience it along with Claire, as she is dropped into the unknown. The fact that Outlander is told from entirely Claire’s perspective is intriguing. By spending so much time in one character’s mind, seeing things through her eyes, we couldn’t help but rejoice when she rejoiced; suffer when she suffered; and love when she loved.

Q. What was the reason behind starting the podcast?

A. Like many fans, we thought it would be (maybe) great to see our favorite series adapted for screen, and it’s true that the series had been optioned for film several times. But nothing had ever come of it. In June 2013 when we read the article that Outlander was being adapted for television and names like Starz and Ron D. Moore were attached to it, we thought for the first time that this really could happen. And if so, we wanted to be a part of the fan experience, not just BE fans. There were many blogs out there, others doing video blogging, but I didn’t want to do something anyone else had done in this space. I’d been a podcast fan since about 2008 and had fantasized about doing my own show one day, but had no idea what that looked like. When this production came along, it seemed like the perfect time to jump in. I looked and looked and there was no podcast dedicated to Outlander at the time. So I asked Summer if she’d do one with me, and she said yes.  

Q. So a logical next step would be to visit where it is set, why choose Spirit Journeys?

A. We’d worked with Susan Brown, our guide, to find operators to send out bids to, and when we learned about Spirit Journeys, so much of our search came together. We knew Julia and her company had the experience in the industry, were familiar with Outlander-themed tours, and would handle the finances expertly. 

Two things that stuck out to us were that they were located in Inverness, and so had the ability to help us out when we were in country, and that they used a trust account to handle guests’ funds. This made us feel very comfortable that the trip and our guests were in the right hands.

Q. Tell me what someone can expect from the next pod abroad?

A. We’ve changed the itinerary slightly to make sure it’s not too duplicative, but it will still have many of the filming and historical locations guests enjoyed during Pod Abroad 2018. We’ve added a distillery tour, an exclusive vendor evening, and are planning a fabulous leaving dinner at Hopetoun House.

Q. What are you looking forward to doing or seeing the most?

A. I think we’re most excited for the leaving dinner! We were able to tour Hopetoun House in 2018 with our guests, and can’t wait to have it host our next group of guests in 2019.

Q. What would you say to someone who is still undecided about whether or not to go?

A. First of all we’d say, if you love Outlander, you will love this trip. Period! Then we’d want to know what questions we could answer. We are doing live Q&As on various social media platforms and plan to feature some of our alumni from 2018 so prospective guests can ask questions of people who have already gone.

For more information you can head over here

Pod Abroad 2019 Tour page https://www.spiritjourneysworldwide.com/tours/outlander-scotland-tour-podcast/   https://www.outlanderpod.com/podabroad/

Outlander Podcast link https://www.outlanderpod.com/

Outlander map https://www.visitscotland.com/see-do/attractions/tv-film/outlander/

We continue our adventures at the our Country Music Association Festival 2018 Tour.

Nashville is so alive, it has such a buzz about it that I haven’t felt elsewhere and its great destination for singles, couples or families alike.

#Darius Rucker was a real highlight for me and Archi, what a showman!! Heres a clip of him.

#cmafest #itstartswithME #MusicMadePossible

We’ve just started our adventure to the CMA live music festival in #Nashville. CMAFest as its know is 11 stages , 350+ artists and 1,100 musicians apparently over 4 days 

All outdoor stages are FREE during the day! This legendary festival is Nashville’s signature Country Music event with 90,000+ attendees from all 50 United States and two dozen countries.

We’ve checked into our rooms at the Embassy suits by Hilton and we unpacked and then went to explore the streets of Nashville to get a feel for the place. This place is absolutely buzzing! The bars and streets are alive with music. 

We then paid a visit to the really cool #Johnny Cash and #Patsy Cline museums and also the world famous #Ryman auditorium a must when you are there.

The rest of the group have went to see who’s on at the #Grand Ole Opry, but me and Archi are going to pace ourselves. Theres a lot to do and see in the next few days and I don’t want to burn out too early. I can’t wait to see their photos and ill keep you updated on how we get on.

Julia.

#cmafest #itstartswithME #MusicMadePossible

That’s me not long back from the International Luxury travel market Asia Pacific http://www.iltm.com/asia/ in Singapore and I thought I would share with you what an absolutely amazing experience I have had, met equally amazing businesses and hopefully met important new suppliers and contacts that I can use to create some truly epic adventures for you, my clients.

It started off with a really glamorous opening party at the Ritz Carlton Singapore and it was such a great night. The team there put on a really high quality event and congratulations all round to everyone involved. It set the tone for the quality of the rest of the event.

Day 2. My day was packed full seeing and speaking to loads of different and interesting suppliers to the luxury travel industry. I was really impressed with everyone there. In the evening I was thrilled to have been invited to a very exclusive event hosted by the amazing Shangri-La Hotel where they flew in a Michelin star chef to show us how our food was made. Brilliant to see an artist at work and it was a really amazing night with good company and fabulous cocktails.

Day 3. Again, loads of appointments with top class suppliers and then we went to the opening night of the new Kempinksi Hotel which was especially exciting as they only signed the contract for it a few days before, so we were one of the first people to set foot in it. The Kempinski girls were the ladies in red in the photos. Afterwards we went for a couple of drinks in the Swissotel, The Stamford which had some of the best views all over Singapore.

Day 4. The final day of the event and more appointments before the final evening event at the Marina Bay Sands hotel but I have to confess that I didn’t make the event as I was burned out. Note to self, need to train harder pre event next time.

Day 5. A lovely and informative walking tour in China town courtesy of Context Travel around the hawkers food centres. This was an insightful tour where we sampled all the delights of Asian and Indian cuisine including an ice cream sandwich which was a new one to me. It’s a real big deal and extremely popular, some of the stalls there have 2 hour-long queues and some even have Michelin star ratings. I had fish ball soup, chicken rice, lotus cakes, curry pies and sugar cane juice, in fact we had so much food I had to have a nap afterwards. I had Indonesian, Malaysian, Chinese and Indian food all in one day.

After my nap I went shopping in the Suntec city Suntec City and I am afraid I have to admit that I ended up getting lost and it took me almost an hour to find my way out, i had to put on Google maps in the end!

Alas, it was then homeward bound but Singapore is a fantastic city with a huge amount to offer and I can’t wait to go back. I loved it! 

Thanks to everyone involved in making it such a valuable and worthwhile event, I can’t wait for next year.

Im really looking forward to working more with Cappella Ubud in Bali and Amanpuri resort, thanks to the Shangri-La for an amazing event and also to the Kempinski Hotel Singapore for allowing us the privilege to be the first to be shown around it. It is a really beautiful place, congratulations.

Thanks to all. 

Julia. 

It’s Christmas time…and the Christmas fever season is officially opened! It’s time for the gift-wrapping madness, flashy streets, Christmas and New Year’s resolutions, loud music, ginger- cinnamon cakes, family and friends gatherings. But also, we all sum up the ups and downs, successes and failures, tears and smiles. It`s time for new promises, new ideas and the well-known optimistic approach ‘Everything will be much better’ dances in the air as one of rare snow flakes.

pexels-photo-186613pexels-photo-66990Most of us spend Christmas with family, at home. It’s sounds good since we spend less and less quality time with our family and friends because we are constantly on speed.

For this reason, I think the best possible idea is to travel somewhere – anywhere at all in order to spend quality time together with your loved ones. It feels good to do something different, changes are always welcomed and an ocean of amazing Christmas getaways awaits. Pick any of them, let yourself into the charms of Christmas fever and, as one of my favourite songs says – Everywhere you go, always take the weather with you…

There are loads of fantastic Christmas breaks. One of my favourites is surely the Christmas Market breaks. What do you get? Memories for a lifetime, traditional presents, maybe a few new friends. Overall, it’s a great opportunity to immerse into the holiday magic and spirit in other countries, explore Europe’s traditional holiday markets, or even buy a last minute gift!

If you ask my husband, skiing is the perfect recipe for an idyllic Christmas family holiday. I agree, there are fabulous ski resorts and centres settled in picturesque scenery. On the other hand, skiing is good for your health. But,…there’s always a but…I hate skiing, and all those ski freaks. I feel more comfortable in warm-weather destinations, in sunbathed hideaways, with an exotic tropical drink in one hand and a relaxing book in other. Aloha!

pexels-photo-247835And also, if your budget is low, there are tons of cheap and warm places to go for Christmas and New Year as well.

If you take a look at our Christmas travel prospects, you can spot one interesting offer – Instagenic travels. In brief, if you are both an Instagram and travel fan, there are loads of places around the world to travel and take awesome Christmas inspired selfies for your Instagram profile.

A famous quote says – ‘There’s no place like home for holidays…”. True, but, why don’t you try something different. We all need a break and Christmas time can be the very best time for a quick and relaxing vacation.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 

Is it just me or everything and everyone’s on speed constantly? I’m ‘running’ all the time and still got a few kilos over. Lol. For real, people are turning into basket cases. Lack of time, money, patience, love, understanding…there’s more on the list. But, on the other hand, lots of stress, negative energy…A few days ago, I literally cut my finger, found myself in ER, in a complete state of a shock. After that, I went to my regular chat/gossip coffee with friends. One of them was angry with her boss, that pompous, pressing…The other one said her kids were driving her crazy and the husband…let’s skip this one. In brief, we all agreed  – we need a break and to run away for a while. But,… where?

In my opinion, all of us should search for the reason or better say, the cause of problems in ourselves. The point is to slow down the pace, to think about priorities. It’s easy to just run away from everything. Some research show that people choose to travel as a solution to their problems and stressful life. And also, 1 in 5 British at least once a year go on a wellness journey. And the trip motivations are pretty much the same everywhere.water-1487304_960_720

What a great idea! When you think of it more closely, wellness journeys focus on mind/body/spirit balance. They offer lots of personal and spiritual growth activities and usually include fitness, detox, yoga, meditation, healthy eating habits, trekking. And the basic concept of a wellness journey is – relax, slow down your pace, get rid of stress, bad habits in a general sense of the meaning, increase the level of self respect in order to bring your body and mind into harmony and improve relationships with other people. One of the core messages, according to my personal opinion, is to get in touch with nature, because, we are natural beings and if we lose this bond with nature, we lose ourselves. That’s why all these fabulous journeys are settled in idyllic and picture book places with stunning scenery all around you, nice and polite people, all willing to help you have a memorable time… An Earth paradise. Or, as a great Latin quote says – Carpe Diem – seize the day. There’s a wide palette of perfect wellness runaways all around the world. In Thailand, India, Bali, Spain, Cyprus and many other out of this world spots. The final choice is up to your own taste.

Fonab Castle Hotel

There are some misconceptions that these journeys are created only for elite. Wrong. There are loads of affordable wellness breaks in UK. For instance, Fonab Castle Hotel in Scotland  is a magnificent place where you can dive into ‘beyond ordinary’ wellness experience.

Summa summarum, at the end of a wellness awakening experience, people come back home full of energy and positive perspective on life and everyday responsibilities. As if you have drunk an energetic booster, everything converts into quite different shapes, much easier to accept and deal with.

In a nutshell, it’s better to enjoy a wellness break at least once a year than become a nuts.

Trekking holidays, like those that are offered by Spirit Journeys, can not only offer the chance to see the world and discover new cultures but they can also provide the chance to drastically improve your health. It is now common knowledge that just 30 minutes of exercise per day can drastically improve your health and one form of exercise that is suitable for any age and fitness level is walking!

small-group-holidays

After a boom in solo-travelling in the past few decades, small group travelling is now on the rise again. While we don’t discourage solo travelling (as it is a brilliant way to see the world), travelling in small groups has multiple benefits for the intrepid traveller. On the other hand many people, when thinking about group travel, immediately think of large coach tours led around by tour guides with umbrellas orflags; very impersonal, very busy and very pre-planned. Group travel has now evolved to meet the demands of the modern traveller; small group holidaysare the happy medium between daunting solo travelling and large, impersonal group tours – but are they right for you?

AdobeStock_84939275-624x403

 

Meditation Retreat

Why a meditation retreat ?

How often do we wish to switch off from the every day stress of life.  Constant phone calls, things to do, children, bills to pay, work there is always something to keep our mind occupied.  Meditation allows us to switch off and disconnect from these worries and become at one with ourselves.  To listen to our inner wisdom relax our mind and find some peace in this chaotic world that we live in. And a break away to a meditation retreat is ideal solution to switch off.