A truly beautiful and unique Caribbean Island

by Ian Begley

WITH beautiful weather, friendly locals and a rich history, Cuba is the Caribbean destination that has it all. This unique island, which sometimes appears stuck in the past, offers a warm welcome to visitors and it is easy to see why many return time and again.
An 11-night trip to Cuba is just one of the many delightful holidays available through www.traveldepartment.ie.
In their Cuban trip, you will walk in the footsteps of Ernest Hemingway and discover the country that inspired much of his writing.
In Old Havana, you will travel by vintage car through the streets and see the city centre built in the baroque and neoclassical style. There will be a trip to Hemingway’s home and the fishing village of Cojimar, the setting for The Old Man and the Sea.
Another excursion will bring you on the “Tobacco Route” in the west of the island. Enjoy a tour of the village of Hershey, named after the American chocolate king, where you will learn about the sugar cane industry before enjoying live music and refreshments in the gardens of Hershey.
As well as the great excursions there will be plenty of free time to sightsee and relax at your own pace. Your holiday will conclude in the coastal area of Varadero where you can swim with dolphins or relax on the pristine beaches.
Superb local guides will be on hand to share their in-depth knowledge of Cuba throughout. Discover the “Pearl of the Antilles” for yourself – you won’t be disappointed.
Prices start from €2,599 for 11 nights including flights, transfers and accommodation, with flight departing Dublin, on October 3.
Alternatively, for anyone with a wanderer’s soul, you can travel through three neighbouring countries over seven days on trip in Venice, Lake Bled and Croatia.
Compare the changing cultures and landscapes as you travel between historic cities, magnificent mountain scenery and the beautiful coastline of the Adriatic.
In Italy, enjoy a full day excursion to the iconic city of Venice and prepare to be enchanted by the atmospheric canals, tiny alleyways and busy squares that make up the real Venice.
Enjoy some relaxing time by the beach in Lido di Jesolo and explore the many cafes, restaurants and shops as well as the stunning ten mile stretch of beach for which the area is known.
In Slovenia, discover the quaint capital of Ljubljana and be awed by the spectacular scenery of the Julian Alps and beautiful Lake Bled, with its central island and clifftop castle. Embark on a full day excursion around Triglav National Park, home to the highest mountain in Slovenia.
Finally, in Croatia you will explore the region of Istria and visit the coastal towns of Porec, Rovinj and Pula. You will visit a Roman amphitheatre, known as the Arena of Pula, Porec’s UNESCO-protected architectural complex of Euphrasius Basilica, which is one of the best examples of early Byzantine architectures in the Mediterranean, and have free time to explore the paved streets of the harbour town, Rovinj.
Prices start from €999pp for seven nights including flights, transfers and half-board accommodation, with flight departing Dublin, October 13.
For more information on this offer and to book, visit www.traveldepartment.ie.

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