Wednesday, October 18, 2017
   
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Enchanted by the Italian Lakes

By ROBIN NOWACKI

BEING a skiing enthusiast, mountains in summer were not my thing, but as the warm sun shone highlighting the contrasts of Lake Maggiore’s serene tranquil azure waters with the dark greens of the pine forested Alps above, the Borromean islands topped with palaces and small boats passing by, I became quite enchanted.

In just an hour I had travelled from Milan’s busy Malpensa Airport to find total peace in the setting of Italy’s magnificent Lake Maggiore, one of my most pleasant surprises in recent years.

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Fisherman who landed Florida....

Inveterate road-tripper MICHAEL BEATTIE - more at home driving hundreds of miles across the United States - experiences his first ever ‘settled’ American holiday…

IN 1881 Hamilton Disston went fishing with a friend – and landed more than he could ever have imagined. Because that trip from Philadelphia to the rivers and lakes of central Florida ultimately made him the biggest landowner in America.

Disston was an industrialist who ran a huge saw manufacturing business. And while casting his line it suddenly struck him that he could drain the enormous tracts of swampland around him and reclaim them for agriculture.

So he bought four million acres of wetland and quickly changed the fortunes of the entire state.

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Thames-eye view of the city sights

Northern Ireland Travel News’ Editor BRIAN OGLE sampled a luxurious Thames River Cruise with Bateaux London…

What better way to enjoy the sights of London than to escape the exhaust fumes, hustle, bustle and clamour of the city streets, and relax with a glass of wine, a three course meal, a superb 360-degree panorama of the city centre and an informative comprehensive running commentary on one of the world's most distinctive skylines.

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A FEW DAYS IN MAGNIFICENT BUDAPEST

ANTHONY LYDEKKER heads to Hungary and explores the beautiful capital - Budapest…

FIRST impression in Budapest: the Danube. We London folk (well many of us) are proud of the Thames – but the Danube is in another league for breadth and impact and the size of the boats and cruise ships put most of the moving craft in London almost in a Dinky toy scale.

So whether it’s a couple of hours round one of the islands mid-stream on the river or a longer trip including a spot of lunch or dinner it is highly recommended. A suggestion is to embark early evening or late teatime and come back after dark to get daylight and night time shots of the hillside of Buda and, of course, the Parliament buildings, on the Pest side, one of the most reproduced civic structures in the world. (Photographer’s tip: don’t use a tripod on moving vessels as the engine vibes can blur things slightly - try a higher ISO value for a slower shutter speed).

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EYES ACROSS THE BORDER...

ROBIN NOWACKI recently visited South Korea with a group of UK travel agents. It’s a land which is becoming increasingly popular with tourists…

SOUTH Korea is a fascinating unique and industrious place – it is perhaps the modern day version of the UK of the early 20th century when ‘Made in Britain’ was a trademark which dominated the world.

However as a nation it is just as famous for dominating international brands such as Samsung, as it is for its relationship with the communist dictatorship of North Korea and the Cold War-style tensions that exist between the two.

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