What: The Society of American Travel Writers' annual on-line auction is open to all with bargains to be had in travel packages, photography and travel writing courses.
|Fairmont St. Andrews|
For instance, a six-day Windjammer Cruise or a four-night luxury Nile cruise, stays in Abu Dhabi or St. Andrews, family packages in the Smokies or Legoland, hip and historic hotels.
|Hotel Matilda, San Miguel Allende, Mexico|
When: Now through 11:45 p.m. (EST) Dec. 30, 2012.
Dine IN Gingerbread
|Great Wolf Lodge, Pocono Mountains.|
Where: Snowland in all 11 locations of Great Wolf Lodge, the largest family of indoor waterpark resorts. This includes resorts in North Carolina, Washington State, Virginia, Texas, Ohio and the Pocono Mountains, PA.
When: Now through Dec. 25, 2012
How: Book a stay and pay a $20 seating fee which goes to Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Bet you won't be able to pass up dessert.
Ultimate Outdoor Experience: Camping overnight in Antarctica
|Camp on the White Continent in 2013.|
• 10-day "Classic Expedition" focuses solely on Antarctica, sailing through the Drake Passage to landings that immerse guests in the remote landscape and exotic wildlife of The White Continent.
• 13-day "Polar Circle Expedition," similar to the 10-day experience, spends its extra days traveling as far south as the Antarctic Circle.
• 13-day "Weddell Sea Expedition" follows the path forged by British Captain James Weddell, who reached 74º latitude in 1823 - a first for explorations;
• 17-day "Christmas Expedition" celebrates the season with traditional carols, festive meals, Santa Claus visits and a New Year's gala and includes the Falklands and South Georgia;
• 19-day "In the Realm of the Great Explorers" explores the areas visited by Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton, and takes in the sub-Arctic eco-system of the Falkland Islands, and South Georgia.
Details: Each camping night is limited to 15 in two-person tents. Campers are accompanied by expedition guides and will be supplied with cold-weather gear, but all is weather permitting. Should more than 15 sign up, a lottery will be held determine who participates. A second camping experience can be scheduled if weather and land conditions permit.
Cost: The night of camping is $500 per person; cruises start from $5,327 to $10,321.
You've got to admit this is the gift for anyone who has everything. Talk about bragging rights.
Tickets to Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance
|Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance. Photo © by Judy Wells.|
What: One of the nation's top gathering of automotive collectibles from classic town cars to world-famous racers.
When: March 8-10, 2013; Concours display March 10.
How: Buy tickets now and save. Advance adult tickets are $55, at the gate $70. You the ages 12-18 $30 in advance, $35 at the gate.
Buy: www.amelia concours.org.
Reduced winter rates for Grand Canyon and Zion Lodge
|Grand Canyon in winter.|
What: Grand Canyon - $85 a night at Maswik Lodge South, $115 per night at Maswik Lodge North. Now through March 7, 2013, excluding Dec. 21-31, 2012.
El Tovar Romance package - $380 plus tax for one night, a bottle of California sparkling wine, and dinner for two with a bottle of Grand Canyon label wine. Available now through Feb. 14, 2013, excluding Dec. 22 through Jan. 1, 2013. Use promo code "romance".
|Zion with a smattering of snow.|
Special holiday rate at JIAWhat: Economy Lot 3 at Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) opens from Dec. 21 through Jan. 5 - or until the lot fills - for a flat fee of $20.
Details: It's first come, first served with the fee payable by cash or credit card upon entry. Travelers are advised to arrive at least two hours before their flight in case the lot is full and they have to find alternative parking. Options include Economy Lots 1 and 2, $5 a day; daily surface lot, $8 a day; Daily Garage, $14 a day, and Hourly Garage, $18 a day.
Picking someone up? Wait in the free courtesy lot next to the JAA administration building and have your traveler call after picking up their luggage.
Give or get an Oxford education
|The Quad, Christ Church, Oxford.|
What: Learn something new in one of the world's most prestigious centers of learning. Study a variety of topics from the operas of Verdi to quantum mechanics or mythical animals during a one-week residence and savor the Oxford experience.
Where: Christ Church, Oxford University, England.
Cost: Tuition, accommodations and all meals are included for approximately $1,885 (US). Private bathroom will add to cost.
When: One-week periods from June 30 to August 10. Registration deadline is May 1, but the most popular courses fill early.
Splurgiferous Family Christmas
|Shangri-La Hotel, Paris|
What: Head to Shangri-La Hotel, Paris for the Noel en Famile package, a two- night minimum stay in an Eiffel Premier Suite for parents and a connecting room for the children including a Christmas tree to decorate, breakfasts and tea, a two-hour tour of Paris in a horse-drawn carriage and VIP treatment at Studio Harcourt where movie stars go for portraits. Champagne for adults, fruit juice for children, professional makeup sessions and a two-hour photo session for four or six people. A framed portrait, a low-res digital copy plus a book and 50 greeting cards. You could also set the session in your suites around the Christmas tree.
Price: Approximately $11,674 (US) per night, but that includes value-added tax, visitor taxes and service.