Friday, June 29, 2012

London Olympics



MSNBC.com published some travel tips for the Olympics. I thought they were worth sharing.

Leave your bags at home if you have tickets to an Olympic soccer match but take an empty plastic bottle with you wherever the venue. Do not even think about a picnic hamper.

With a month to go to the opening ceremony, on July 27, London 2012 organizers issued a list on Wednesday of "Five Top Tips" for ticket holders heading for the Games, some more directed at foreign visitors than the home crowd.




Number one, in a country famed for its inhabitants' willingness to form an orderly queue with an air of weather-beaten resignation, is "Be prepared for security checks when you arrive." This, the visitor is warned, will be like taking an international flight at an airport. There will be queues, so get there early and do not forget the tickets. They cannot be printed out online when you get there.

Organizers suggest checking the website www.london2012.com for recommended arrival times.



The second tip, for regulars of budget airlines, will also be a familiar one: "Bring as little as possible with you." This is because the more you bring, the more time security will spend rifling through your possessions.

One small soft-sided rucksack or handbag will be allowed per person, which must fit under the seat that, all being well, you will soon occupy. For those attending the soccer, organizers "strongly suggest" not bringing a bag unless you are happy to have your entry delayed and possibly miss the match.

This is because some of the soccer venues, such as Wembley Stadium, will see up to 90,000 people pass through the turnstiles for popular games. 




Top Tip number three is also one frequent flyers know by heart: "Read the lists of prohibited and restricted items before you leave". This also means water bottles. Bring an empty one and fill it up for free at water points inside venues.
Any food brought in must fit inside the bag. There will of course be plenty of outlets on site, including the world's biggest and busiest McDonalds for those wishing to super-size their experience.

Tip Four is to leave plenty of travel time.
"London and the UK will be extremely busy and very different to what you're used to," says LOCOG, an assumption that some regulars on the Tokyo subway might not agree with.
Transport, and crowded subway trains, is one of the organizers' biggest headaches alongside security.

Tip Five is a simple reminder that VISA are Olympic sponsors and therefore the only credit, debit or prepaid card accepted inside Olympic venues.
Cash, of course, is welcome anywhere and there will be plenty of willing takers in a town hoping to attract a flood of international visitors.

Organizers say that, excluding soccer, some 90 percent of Olympic tickets have been sold.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Murano


Sculptures all over the island of Murano are made of glass. Catching sunlight, this one resembled a huge ball of fire.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Varenna, Italy


Looking at beautiful Lake Como

Monday, June 18, 2012

Most Beautiful Churches


Recently I posted photos of the Duomo in Milan. This church was named one the ten most beautiful in the world by Budget Travel. I could see why.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Paella Party at The Terraces Winery


Paella cooked over the open flame...in 104 degree weather. It sure was tasty. Thanks to Timm, Sharon, Nate, Christina, and the rest of the people who put this feast on for us. It was awesome.


A great sunset to end a great evening.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Italian Trains


Italian trains...the way to travel across Italy. Be sure to book the fast one, though.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Duomo of Milan


The Duomo of Milan...impressive and imposing Gothic and Neo-Gothic structure. This dominates the square and the whole area for that matter.


Yes, we went to the top after visiting the massive structure inside.


Shapes everywhere you look.


Viewing the streets below...



Viewing through all the pinnacles...


Viewing across the roof tops...

What a day and what a wonderful piece of history.