Travel News

Travel News

By Judy Newell

Dreaming of Travel

I’ve been thinking a lot about community and the ways we’re all getting creative to support each other, even when we can’t stand side by side.

It feels like such a strange thing to say to a group of travelers, but thanks for staying home for now. I look forward to continuing to dream and plan with you, and, again soon, to share our passion for travel in real life.

We will travel again, and I can’t wait to welcome you back. Until that day comes, stay well.

Judy Newell

Mexico News

Nizuc Resort the Most Instagrammable Hotel in the World

We have a winner! After six rounds of voting by Luxury Travel Advisor, Nizuc Resort and Spa, located on the southern end of Cancun’s Hotel Zone, has officially been crowned The Most Instagrammable Hotel in the World for 2020. The resort fuses Asian architectural forms with Mexican materials and Mayan iconography. 

International News

Orchid Paradise

Due to its location, between the Andes and the Amazon, this natural area of Machu Picchu allows the presence of microclimates, which are a source of great biological diversity.

Orchids can be observed along the routes and paths that cross the Historical Sanctuary of Machu Picchu. A nature reserve, protecting more than 370 species of orchids, is located near the Vilcanota River and is managed by the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel.

Here you will find the world’s largest collection of native orchids, according to the American Orchid Society. In addition to beautiful orchids, this natural paradise covering over 12 acres is home to several species of birds and butterflies. It is also a refuge for Andean bears, which are part of a conservation program.

Passion Play Postponed

The 42nd Oberammergau Passion Play will be postponed until 2022 due to the situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Cruise News

CDC Orders Cruise Ships to Suspend Operations for 100 More Days

On April 9, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced an extension of its “No Sail Order” for cruise ships in response to the Covid-19 outbreak. It was originally suspension was decreed on March 14 and set to last 30 days. The US cruise industry volunteered to suspend operations at that time.

The new order remains in place until one of three scenarios occurs: the Secretary of Health and Human Services no longer declares Covid-19 a public health emergency; the CDC director modifies or rescinds the order based on public health or other considerations; or 100 more days pass, the CDC said in a statement.

Even though the majority of cruise ships are not sailing right now, nearly 80,000 crew members remain on some 100 cruise ships off the East Coast, West Coast, and Gulf Coast of the US. At least 20 cruise ships at port or anchored reported in recent weeks that they have known or suspected cases among crew.

The CDC, the US Coast Guard, and the Department of Homeland Security are working with the industry to determine the most appropriate public health strategy to limit the impact of Covid-19 at cruise ship ports in the US. For the time being, cruise ship operators cannot disembark travelers in port or embark crew without Coast Guard approval.

The Cruise Lines International Association has openly partnered with state and federal agencies in managing the spread of the virus since its onset. The cruise industry contributes some US$53 billion to the US economy each year, and represents more than 421,000 American jobs, CLIA says.

Though President Donald Trump has applauded the industry’s efforts in working with officials to address the pandemic, the industry is not eligible for the economic stimulus package the federal government signed into law last month.

AmaWaterways Extends Suspension of River Cruises

AmaWaterways has extended its fleet suspension, canceling all European, Asian and African river cruises through June 30, 2020 as a result of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Cruisers on canceled voyages will receive a future cruise credit equal to 115 percent of the value of their AmaWaterways purchased services, redeemable on any AmaWaterways river cruise sailing through December 31, 2022. The credit can be used to cover all charges related to AmaWaterways services; it is also transferable with written confirmation provided by original owner.

P&O and Cunard Extend Their Suspension Period

P&O Cruises and Cunard have pushed back the resumption of sailings to May 16. The continued travel restrictions are also set to impact the launch of P&O’s new flagship Iona, the largest ship built to serve the UK travel market.

Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

“Beauty is whatever gives joy.”–Edna St. Vincent Millay


Deal of the Week

Crystal Cruises Offering Discount on New Open Deposits

If the anticipation of a journey is one of travel’s rewards, then the new Crystal Assured Savings may inspire the planning of your future adventures. With a focus on value, guaranteed savings, limitless choices, and the benefit of time to choose your perfect cruise, Crystal Assured Savings invites you to lock in an additional 2.5 percent savings.

That’s an additional savings of US$50 to over US$6,000 or more, depending on sailing and category on the all-inclusive Crystal Experience of your choice through the end of 2022 when you make a US$500 non-refundable “Open Booking” deposit before June 30, 2020.

You have through March 31, 2021 to choose your voyage.

The Crystal Assured Savings program is available for all bookings for any seven-night or longer itinerary for 2020, 2021, and 2022. That’s two and a half years’ worth of cruises to consider by Ocean, River, Yacht, and Expedition ships.

The discount on the deposit can be combined with any other Crystal offer, including Two-for-One fares, Book Now Savings, Crystal Society Savings, Early Final Payment Savings, Back-to-Back Savings, Combination Voyage Savings and available future cruise credits.

Perfect Journeys Office Is Closed

The office of Perfect Journeys, located in Rancho Los Labradores on the Car. a Dolores Hidalgo, temporarily closed on April 1. It is planned that the office will reopen in the same location. Meanwhile, Judy is working from her home and requests that clients contact her by telephone or email for help with any future travel planning.

Judy Newell, an international travel consultant since 1971, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She custom designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, physical abilities and budget. Please contact Judy for further information on Travel News topics and around-the-world travel. Cell phone 415-111-8765; Vonage 949-300-3682; email


Sources:Luxury Travel Advisor, Machu Picchu Inc., Condé Nast Traveler, Cruise Critic, Cunard, Travelmarket Report