Frank and Edna

Frank's Adventure

with Frank and Edna

Why don't you join us on some great worldwide tours?

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    Travel is one nice thing you can do for yourself, not only when you retire but also when you’re young and able. This web page has been developed to offer you some insights to some of the travel we’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy, but also as a means of inviting you to join us in some of our travel. We generally use Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT) as the company of choice. Their tours are limited to a maximum of 16 people, their costs are reasonable and provide the best return for your travel investment and they’re good…really good. Their middle name “Adventure” says it all.

    If you’re interested in any of the listed venues, please select “Tours” and pick the one you want to learn about.

    Remember, this site is still under construction so new information will be added over the next few months. Come back and visit periodically.

    For general tour information, or to book a tour, call Overseas Adventure Travel directly at 1-800-955-1925. Provide them my Customer Number 504182 and my name, and each person will receive $100 off of their first tour with OAT.

For all other information contact:

Frank & Edna Calenda
321-773-2046
fcalenda@aol.com

Africa

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Iceland

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Turkey

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China

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People of Peru

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Machu Picchu and the Surrounding Area

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Flowers of Peru

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Our Tours

Africa Adventure

  • Part 1

  • Part 2

Iceland Adventure

  • Day Tripping in Iceland

River Cruise Europe

  • Rhine and Danube River Cruise

Turkey Adventure

  • The Best of Turkey - Part 1

  • The Best of Turkey - Part 2

  • The Best of Turkey - Part 3

Coming Tours

China, Clipper Ship, Peru,

South America

Videos

Frank Calenda

306 Markley Court

Indian Harbour Beach

Florida 32937

Phone: 321-773-2046

Email Frank by clicking here.

Part 1

Day Tripping in Africa

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Picture yourself in the deepest, darkest Africa. You’re following your guide on an early morning walking safari. You round a bend in the trail. Staring you in the face is a lioness with a look that says, “One step closer to my cub and you’ll be our breakfast!”

You hear your armed guide whisper, “Don’t run, just be calm and she won’t bother you.” You check your urge to flee. You watch. Then slowly and carefully take a few photos and gratefully follow your guide away, but not without a few anxious glances over your shoulder. You can’t help but wonder, “What’s next???”

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On this safari, you’ll never really know what’s next. It could be two juvenile elephants, still young enough to enjoy wrestling in the nearest water hole.

It could be coming on to a herd of water buffalo, one of the most dangerous and formidable animals to roam the jungle. Your guide will fill you full of stories of these animals being hunted and wounded, but then circling around to make the hunter the object of the hunt and, many times coming out the winner.

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A Cheetah could be basking in the warm morning sun, having already filled its stomach on a misshapen antelope.

Or you could come upon the King himself. Being inherently shy, he stays away from the main pride, especially during the time that the young cubs are active. He quietly lies in the high grass where he can’t be spotted, except at the last minute when you turn and there he is.

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Proceed to Part 2

Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Africa, their travels have taken them to China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Iceland, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

Part 2
Zimbabwe and Botswana

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We flew into our first camp at Lake Kariba, deep in Zimbabwe. After getting settled in our tented camp, we were provided a boat ride to locate the hippos and later, to watch the sun set over the lake.

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These tents are what I like to refer to as 5-star tents. Not all the camps were tents, some were thatched roof cottages. They are all well appointed with a private bathroom in each facility. In one camp, we had to notify our guide the night before that we would be showering in the morning. That was because the wood-burning hot water heaters had to be lit several hours before sun-up in order to have hot water.

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Land Rovers were usually provided in the mornings and afternoons for extensive safari rides. One also had the option to lie in the hammock and survey the lake with all its activities from the elephants feeding to the hippos lazily basking in the water.

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Travel from camp to camp was not always possible by road. They might be available but certainly not what one would want to ride over for seven to eight hours. Instead we travelled using small aircraft. Mostly they were Piper aircraft and the flight was usually in to order of 30 to 45 minutes in duration. Most of the landing strips were runways carved into the jungle floor, a full half mile of dirt. During this particular post-monsoon season, some of these strips were flooded and alternate transportation was needed

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Next our safari took us to one of the most beautiful places in the world. The famed Victoria Falls. Originating in Angola to the North, the Zambezi River flows for 600 miles through the African plains until it comes to the rift created by volcanic action millions of years ago. This is more than just a sight to see, you will actually feel its massive vibrations long before you see it. The roar of falling water resonates to your very core.

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Time passes quickly because you never want to move your eyes from the ever-changing views. You’ll need a water-proof cover for your stroll along the face of the falls. If you’ve seen Niagara Falls, you’ve seen only but a brief image of what you’ll view at Victoria. Niagara Falls is impressive but Victoria is the grandfather of all falls.

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And so it goes from camp to camp for 3 weeks. When you wake each morning you ask yourselves, “Do I want to be jostled and bumped around again today? Haven’t I seen enough animals to last a life time?”  Then, as you recall the sounds of the night, the grunting of the hippo’s as they passed your window. The mighty roar of the lion that has made its catch. The answer flashes into your mind that you haven’t seen enough. This is wild Africa. This is the trip of a lifetime and you rush into the day with renewed vigour wondering what amazing sights await you today. There’ll be tears in your eyes when you have to leave and you’ll promise yourself that you’ll return some day. That’s exactly what we’re doing.

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Go Back to Part 1

Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Africa, their travels have taken them to China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Iceland, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

Iceland? Iceland?? Who could possibly want to go to Iceland?

Any traveler considering this will invariably be faced with this question. My wife and I had considered going there for many years but when we found it would become a reality, we were not only asked this question, but also many more. “Isn’t it cold there?” or “Don’t you have to travel by snow-mobile?” were additional questions, amongst many more, that we had to field. Most inquires seemed to be designed to discourage us from going although no one we spoke to had ever been there.

We went anyway and will happily state that we’re glad we did.

We’ve made many trips with our favorite travel company, Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT). We used them for this trip. Oh, there are other companies out there that provide travel to Iceland, but this company always delivers. The middle name says it all, “Adventure”. Read on to see what we mean.


Day Tripping in Iceland

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Yes, it is cold in Iceland. Not all the time but admittedly, a lot of the time. It can also be windy and rainy. Have you ever heard of people golfing in the rain or going to a football game on a blustery day? That’s the mind-set you need to travel this uniquely wonderful land. Once you get over your fear of getting wet or cold, you’re ready to see all the wonders it has to offer.

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Our initial introduction to this land was seeing miles and miles of black, porous, ugly lava rock. In fact, so ugly the landscape was beautiful. That sounds like an oxymoron but you really need to experience it. You’ll spend more than a few minutes, by the side of the road looking at a landscape that’s right out of the Lord of The Rings movie. Just when you’re sure that you don’t like it, you’ll find that you really do.

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Waterfalls?? We’ve all seen them. Niagara, Victoria, Yosemite, and many others. Well you won’t see any like the literally hundreds and hundreds that dot this land. There’s the thin and high, the narrow and forceful and the wide and spectacular. It’s difficult to travel more than a few miles without seeing one.

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Do you want to see whales in the waters of the Arctic Ocean? For this adventure, Overseas Adventure Travel took us to Akureyri, the second largest city in Iceland. There’s usually not a concern if you’ll spot them or not. These goliaths come right up to the boat and seemingly love to flip their massive tails at you. On our journey, we fully saw more than fifteen, some of them families with mom, dad and baby, or so it seemed. I guess it could have been grandma, mom and baby. It really didn’t matter, the excitement was high and everyone was thrilled at the adventure.

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How do they stay warm in Iceland? Well it may surprise some people that they are one of the most ecologically resource rich countries in the world. Most of their heating and electricity come from the turbulence of the underground lava heated water and steam. All over the country you can see the great steam vents hissing forth from the ground. They have learned to harness this great natural resource and use it wisely. They pipe the hot water to city distribution centers losing only several degrees every 15 miles. Houses in the city can expect hot water piped in to their home at about 180F degrees. They also capture the great steam vents, driving massive turbines to produce a good portion of electricity needed throughout the country. They use these natural resources and return them to the earth and lose very little or nothing in the process.

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Do flowers grow in Iceland? Well yeah, we noticed a couple eking out a living in the cold cliffs hugging the northern ocean. But wait, we saw beautiful flower arrangements in the stores and restaurants. Could they possibly be imported and look that beautiful? Well, with all the thermal activity here, they have hot houses where they grow the most amazing flowers and vegetables. All I could think of was how healthy the flowers looked. Stems that would droop under the weight of large flowers, were standing straight, tall and seemingly proud. The veggie’s were large and we were lucky enough to sample some in the cooking.

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Well, let’s see. Most cold countries with high mountains have glaciers. Does Iceland have them? You bet your ice cube they do, and some mighty ones at that. These goliaths are often visible from the road and a short trip by jeep will get you up close and personal with them. Even pictures of them can’t describe the grandeur of seeing one from the base. At one point on the ring road (Iceland Route 1), you can stop and view the large icebergs that break off from them and make their way to the ocean. Looking at this wonder will make you forget you’re cold until you realize you’ve seen enough.

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How about birds? Does Iceland have birds? Silly question. It most likely has more species of birds than an aviary in any zoo. What did we see? How about Snipes, the Common Raven or the Tern…and the common gulls that inhabit the great cliffs in the thousands? Which did I like the best? The puffin was the best. From a distance they look like a little clown hugging the shear walls. But in Iceland, you can get up close. They are a beautiful bird and, when they look at you, they seem to demand respect. They got ours. They are certainly survivors in this harsh environment

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Want more adventure? This tour took us to a wild ride on the rapids in a rubber raft. Some say the rapids reached Class 3 level. Whatever it was, it was thrilling and exciting. We were outfitted with the proper clothing and gear. Safety briefings were thorough and often, before we left. You can’t explain the thrill of this ride. It has to be experienced.

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Finally, remember the part about the thermal power? Well when all is said and done, much of the warm water is piped to an area called the Blue Lagoon. It’s a heavenly place for relaxing after an adventurous tour and a break from the chilling weather. You’re required, at the hot pools, to bathe before and after you enter these embryonically warm waters. It permeates your bones and sooths your flesh. It was a great culmination to our trip.

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This has been just a little insight into our travels in the unique country. Most of the venues described were included on our OAT trip. All transportation, most meals, lodging in minimum 4 star hotels and entry to parks were a part of the package with them. We spent a week on our own and saw a lot of wonderful things but our tour with OAT brought us to places that we would have never ventured on our own. Don’t hesitate to give it a try. Put it on your bucket list and don’t worry if you’ll enjoy it…you will.

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Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Iceland, their travels have taken them to Africa, China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

The Best of Turkey
Part 1


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When people talk of turkey, thoughts turn to Thanksgiving and yummy feasts with mashed potatoes, yams, stuffing and lots of gravy to pour over everything. Not too few glasses of wine may also be consumed.

This isn’t the kind of turkey we’re talking about here. This Turkey is a country that has existed as long as time itself, or so you’ll think when you look at the many wonders you’ll see in the Overseas Adventure Travel tour to this land.

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Our initial introduction to Turkey was in Istanbul. Our hotel, although small, was clean and located in the central part of town. Looking out of our window we, had a grand view of the famous Blue Mosque. I was actually happy to just stand there and let my mind wander, trying to imagine the building of this structure and what its history was. Our guide took care of those questions and more. We found that it was built in 1616, just under 400 years ago.

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After our arrival, we didn’t stay long in our hotel. The pace of this tour was quite good. We didn’t spend time milling around but, on the other hand, enough time was spent at each venue to see it’s wonder and find out a little bit about it. We spent 3 days in Istanbul seeing the touristy but very interesting places. Of course, our first stop was the Blue Mosque. Everybody wants to see that and I must say we were not disappointed. As we strolled down the traffic crowded streets on our way there, the call to prayer (Adhan) came wafting over the sounds of the traffic. It’s an eerie, melancholic sound. You’ve just got to stop walking and listen. We would hear this five times a day.

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The mosque was beautiful to say the least. You have to remove your shoes when you go in and the woman must cover their head. With the hundreds of shoes sitting outside the doors, one can only hope that theirs will be there when you come out. As impressive as it is on the outside, the awe at seeing the inside is even more intense. It almost seems like the room is just a big shell but it is so ornate, you forget about the openness. The Turkish rug that is spread over a large part of the room is immense, well over 2000 square feet.

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Also, while in Istanbul, we visited the Kapalicarsi Grand Bazaar. This market would rival any flea market you’d visit in the states. Usually, we find that the vendors in foreign countries pester you to tears trying to sell you something. In one country one time, we physically had to remove their hands from our arms. Not so in this bazar. The salespeople were actually friendly, most of the time asking where we were from and if we liked Turkey. It was all done with a smile and we even found that we would mention how nice it was to talk to them when we left. It didn’t seem to matter if we bought something or not. There was a LOT to buy and you might wish you’d brought an extra, empty suitcase with you.

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Of course, while in Istanbul, your visit would not be complete without a stop at the spice market. Any chef would meet this dreams just walking around these shops that sell everything from curry powder to Nigella seeds (look them up). The smells that attack your nasal passages sometimes are so powerful, they also affect your taste buds. It’s no wonder we had lunch immediately after leaving this market.

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Then there was the fantastic Basicila cistern, a great subterranean pool that supplied Istanbul with water. You will descend down some dark, dank stone steps into a wonderland of sights. One might ask themselves if Disney was here and built another park. Although there are many people down here, the atmosphere is hushed, mostly because people were admiring the beauty. One question that seemed to be frequently asked was, “How in the devil did they build this thing so many years ago.”

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I could go on and on about the sights seen in the very old, very unique city but our time there was only 3 days and we saw way too many things to discuss and display here. Let me list a few of those places. The Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Sleymaniye Mosque, Taksim Square, a sit down at the Gulluoglu Baklava store (and a generous sampling of their product), and a cruise down the famous Bosphorus River. Take a look at the photos on this web site to view some of these places.

Our further journeys take us to many places in Turkey including a 4 day cruise of the Mediterranean on a Gullet boat. Please read Part two and three for a further insight to the wonderful OAT tour.

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Proceed to Part 2

Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Turkey, their travels have taken them to Africa, China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

The Best of Turkey
Part 2


Just the three days we spent in Istanbul with the OAT tour was enough to make us happy. What made us even happier was the knowledge that there was a lot more to come.

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The next morning we flew to Izmir on an early morning flight. The flight was a good one and we hit the ground with our feet running. An early morning flight didn’t mean we were going to sit back for the rest of the day recovering. OAT doesn’t work that way.

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The bus took us directly from the airport to a glass bead factory where we were entranced by not only the product but also by the ancient way they made them. We were told that this process hadn’t changed in hundreds of years. The beads themselves were called the “Evil Eyes” and were purported to ward off evil if you hung them from the mirror of your car or wore them as jewelry. They were cheap enough so we bought some for all of our friends. We keep one in our lottery envelope although it hasn’t helped yet. Hey, who knows??

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By now it was lunch time and on our way to Kusadasi we stopped at the small village of Dogancilar. OAT usually provides a home-hosted meal on their tours. We enjoy these because it gives us a chance to interact with the locals and to taste some of the local home-made food. Here we were hosted by Semra and her family. The table had been set but not before we sat and tried to communicate with these people. It was fun and, at times, hilarious in our feeble attempts to pronounce their words. No matter, we always got out points across and, of course, had our guide to interpret when needed. The food? It was indescribable. They provided the names for all of it but not only couldn’t we pronounce it, we’d never remember it. Everyone had a taste of everything and, in the final, nothing was left. We left promising that someday we’d return.

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We continued to the Charisma hotel in Kusadasi. This was at least a 5 star hotel. Our view of the Mediterranean was spectacular to say the least. Our guide took us on a brief tour and we returned for supper at the hotel that night.

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In the morning, we were up early. Our guide told us that there were five cruise ships in port and that if we wanted to miss the crowds, we had to beat them there. Our destination was Ephesus, an ancient city about 30km from Kusadasi. The wonders found here are too numerous to list. I can show you a few photos but best go to a site and read about it by clicking here. We walked the House of the Virgin Mary, the Basilica of Saint John and so much more. Our guide was right, we did beat the crowds. By 11am, we almost had to walk sideways to keep from bumping into everyone. That’s the nice thing about the OAT guide, they are really street wise on everything within their country.

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Proceed to Part 3

Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Turkey, their travels have taken them to Africa, China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

The Best of Turkey Part 3


After we had lunch at the carpet factory, we drove to Marmaris to start out four-night Gulet experience. The Gullet is a 3 masted schooner type boat. It comfortably accommodated our entire group.

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Not only sail, but as much swimming as we cared to do. It was cold when you went in but then you’d find that you didn’t want to get out. Of course sailing and swimming were not the only activities on this part of the journey.

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We boated into Cleopatra’s baths, explored remote islands, stopped at herder’s homes and enjoyed gourmet meals served by the crew. There were never rough seas and, in fact, these were some of the best night sleeps we experienced in a long while. The gentle rocking of the boat was all it took to put us to sleep after an exciting day.

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And so it went on this fabulous Turkey trip. There we so many things to follow they are too many to list in this brief synopsis.

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The Ancient City of Myra and its cliff dwellings. Scrumptious food all along the way.

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Brief stops at the many mosques and to watch an Imam offer prayer.

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We spent a night on the way to Cappadocia “roughing” it in a private home in a small village where the local children not only followed us on our short hikes but entertained us with their playtime songs and dances. Truly wonderful.

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Then there was Cappadocia. A natural wonder unparalleled by other things we experienced on this venture. It would take several more pages of detailed text to describe a wonder that should be seen by all adventure travelers. We were quartered in a very unique Cave Hotel. The photos of the rock formations, balloon spectacular, the underground city and the region in itself, speak for themselves

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Frank and Edna Calenda have travelled six of the seven continents. In addition to Turkey, their travels have taken them to Africa, China, Vietnam, Tibet, Peru, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, throughout Europe and a 44 day Clipper Ship venture around the world. They have recently organized a trip to the Serengeti National Park in Africa.

You can be part of this group or get additional information by contacting Frank and Edna at 321-773-2046 or email fcalenda@aol.com

Canal Tripping Through the Netherlands, Germany and Austria


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Frank and Edna Calenda – Indian Harbour Beach, Florida

Do you remember when you were a kid, standing on the bank of your favorite stream? You had just made a little boat of sticks and string. You put a little flag on a stick pole and pushed your boat off the shore to sail adventures unknown. There it goes, taken by the current. You imagine yourself standing on the deck, sailing to exotic lands and colorful cities. But then, your trip is short lived as the stream pulls your boat away…along with your dreams. You watch it disappear and can only wonder where it will go and what it will see.

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My wife Edna and I relived those childhood dreams in June. We signed on with Grand Circle Travel to sail with one of their riverboats, the River Aria, from Amsterdam to Vienna. The trip was called The Great Rivers of Europe. For fourteen fantastic days we idled down two of the most famous rivers in the world, the Rhine and the Danube. On this trip we landed in Amsterdam and spending a couple days there was a fascinating introduction to the adventures that were to come. River3.jpeg Amsterdam, a canal city in itself, is alive with history, unparalleled architecture and friendly smiling people. An included tour on a canal boat took us to many of the famous buildings there, from Ann Frank’s hiding place to one of the diamond centers glittering with diamonds of all sizes and shapes. Nope, no samples available, thank you. We also had plenty of time to walk the streets at our own pace and see some of the sights away from the canals. It’s a photographers dream.

We boarded Grand Circles own river boat, the River Aria and in good time settled into our very comfortable cabin with a large window which, we were to find out, would be a great place to sit and watch the wonders of these countries as they silently slid by. We also spent much time viewing these sights from the large, open upper deck. There is nothing quite like sitting there watching the mountain-side castles come into view. Europeans are great walkers. They strolled the shores and waved to us as we sailed by. We all knew where we were going but we couldn’t fully realize the sights that awaited us. Although we visited too many ports to describe here, River4.jpeg let me list some of them. Cologne, where the grand sandstone cathedral sits. Koblenz and Mainz. Frankfurt, Wurtzburg, Nuremberg, Passu and Vienna were also some of the stops. There were at least eight more beautiful cities visited and, at most all of them, we were offered an included guided tour of the main attractions of those towns and villages. No two cruises, like no two days, are ever the same. You’ll most likely have rain days but hey, it was just as much fun in the rain. We took a number of the optional tours, but they are quite personal in nature and need to be considered on their own merits and as to what each individual enjoys. We will say don’t miss the optional “Musical Vienna” show. That definitely was one of the highlights.

How to describe this tour in a nutshell is not possible. It would suffice to say that the boat was well appointed and comfortable. River5.jpeg The food scores in the outstanding category. It was very well prepared, had many good selections and was served in an excellent manner. If you go away hungry from one of these meals, you’re on the wrong cruise. The staff alone was worth the trip. So many smiles and constantly asking how they can help and are we enjoying ourselves. By the time you leave, you can’t help but feel that you’ve made more friends, and that’s not only with the crew. Your fellow travelers will likely be people that you communicate with for years to come.

Finally, the sights and things we experienced. They were second to none. Castles from days of old, wineries and beer gardens where you can sample their wares, quaint villages that mark their histories in the hundreds of years. Vistas that compare with those National Geographic photos that we all ohh and ahh over. Will you remember all these things? Well, if you take your camera, you’ll have enough memories to last a lifetime. We took ours and we’ve got over a thousand pictures to prove it.

Frank and Edna have traveled extensively with Grand Circle Travel (GCT) and Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT). They are one company but both divisions offer top notch international travel. If interested in travel with them, Grand Circle Travel can be viewed at and Overseas Adventure Travel at www.oattravel.com. Mention my name and provide my Customer Number 000504182 and receive $100 per person off on your first purchased trip. You may also contact me at 321-773-2046 or email me at fcalenda@aol.com. For highlights on some or our other world-wide travels, return to the home page by clicking here.