Recommend July 2016 - (Page 6)

E d it o r 's N o t e s Last month, I traveled to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic to hang out with the likes of SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I actually took the short airplane ride from Miami to Punta Cana to check out the new Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Punta Cana, part of Karisma Hotels & Resorts, and meeting these huge celebrities was just the icing on the cake. That's me & SpongeBob SquarePants at the new Nickelodeon Go to to see all of the neat Hotels & Resorts Punta Cana. images and takeaways from my press trip-it was quite a unique experience. Speaking of singular travel experiences, this issue is spilling over with them-whether your clients are looking to go on a yoga and culinary retreat in Israel (page 22) or learn to surf in Morocco (page 8), the editors have handpicked an array of active and experiential vacation options that you'll want to let your clients know about. Did you know your clients could race on a bona fide America's Cup yacht in St. Maarten (page 16), or go on a camel safari in Mexico (page 29)? Undeniably, one of the world's most extraordinary vacation experiences is taking an expedition cruise to Antarctica. It's one of the most remote destinations on the planet, but, as the cruise line principals note in the feature on page 10, this type of adventure cruising is growing in popularity, and ideally suited for wellexperienced travelers who are curious about the world, and who are yearning for truly immersive experiences. This issue also features several onsites and onboards. We've got the 4-1-1 on Holland America's new Koningsdam ship (page 13); Barbados' culinary prowess (page 21); the diversity of South Africa's geography, from golden beaches to the heart of the bush (page 24); and Thuringia, a little-known gem in Germany (page 30). We've also put the focus on Rail Travel around the globe, because we think it's cool that you can let your clients know that they have the option to ride a Toy Train in India (page 34) or see bits of Switzerland that are only visible by rail (page 9). Or, as travel advisor Susan Farewell suggests in her column on page 20, taking the night train between Hanoi and Lao Cai. E-mail me to let me know what singular vacation experiences you've created for your clients. -Paloma Villaverde de Rico E-mail me at Official Florida Travel Industry Education Program Recommend has partnered with VISIT FLORIDA to create a course focused on Florida's Beaches. You'll get the 4-1-1 on the state's shorelines-whether bustling with activity or leaving visitors feeling as if they could be on a deserted island, Florida's beaches are for families, couples, watersports enthusiasts, and beach bums. When you graduate as a VISIT FLORIDA Beaches Specialist, you'll have access to prizes, including a Maui Jim gift card, three $50 Amazon gift cards, and a Loud Pill FM radio Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Speaker, valued at $75; and you'll receive 3 CEU credits from The Travel Institute or 12 CEU credits from ACTA. Graduates also receive sales support from VISIT FLORIDA and a personalized certificate. Go to to enroll and become a VISIT FLORIDA Beaches Specialist. let's get social Hang out with us @Recommendmag on both Twitter & Instagram, group publisher/editorial director associate publisher editor-in-chief associate editor art director latin america editor caribbean editor cruise editor web editor/copy editor contributing writers laurel a. herman terence k. murphy paloma villaverde de rico michelle marie arean janet del mastro carla hunt ed wetschler vivian holley melissa bryant susan farewell, lane nieset, grisel diaz-ors corporate director of marketing sharon lewen production manager estrella bibas ad traffic coordinator daimee feliz chairman/founding editor hal herman president/editorial director laurel a. herman executive vice president gary herman miami corporate headquarters: 5979 nw 151st. st., suite 120, miami lakes, florida 33014 tel: (305) 828-0123; fax: (305) 826-6950 caribbean, central & south america: terry murphy, tel: (305) 828-0123; ext. 120; fax: (305) 828-0799 northeast usa, eastern canada, europe, africa, middle east: monique agaliotis,, tel: (917) 244-7000 florida, midwest usa, caribbean: brenda goodwin,, tel: (305) 828-0123; ext.160; fax: (305) 826-6950 southeast usa, colorado, utah, idaho, montana, wyoming, texas, north & south dakota: karen smith,; (561) 419-8397 western canada, california, oregon, washington state, nevada, arizona, new mexico: lisa marie costa,, tel: (949) 244-4760 hawaii: alan rock,, tel: (310) 721-2825 cancun: margarita alvarez, tel: 011 52 998 287 1545; fax: 011 52-998 884-1716 RECOMMEND, Vol. 31, issue number 10, (ISSN 0034-1452) is published monthly by Worth International Media Group. OFFICE OF PUBLICATION: 5979 N.W. 151st St., Suite 120, Miami Lakes, FL 33014.Periodicals postage paid at Hialeah, FL and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to RECOMMEND Circulation Department, P.O. Box 171070 Hialeah, FL 33017-1070. RECOMMEND is distributed at no charge to qualified travel agents and tour operators. Paid annual subscriptions are available for $48 in the U.S., $96 in Canada, payable in U.S. dollars in advance. Published for North American distribution. Canada Post: Publications Mail Agreement #40612608. Canada Returns to be sent to Pitney Bowes International, P.O. Box 25542, London, ON N6C 6B2 Copyright© 2005 Worth International Media Group. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A. Recommend is not responsible for unsolicited photography, art or manuscripts. To manage your subscription online, visit or e-mail as well as on And if you want to see what our editors are up to away from the office, follow them @EdWetschler & @AreanWanderlust. 6 july 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend July 2016

Editor’s Notes
Hotel Desk: Escape the Ordinary
Tour Talk: Rail Travel in Europe
Expedition Cruising: Adventure of a Lifetime
Onboard Review: Holland America’s MS Koningsdam
Do Like the Locals in Latin America
Only on These Islands
Travel Advisor Corner: Dining Out on International
Onsite Review: Barbados
Explore Israel Off the Well-Trodden Road
Onsite Review: South Africa: From Beach to Bush
Explore the Great Outdoors via Rail Travel
Onsite Review: Club Med Sandpiper Bay
Singular Experiences
Onsite Review: At Home in Thuringia, Germany
Journeys Beyond the Ordinary
Come Aboard: India Rail Travel

Recommend July 2016