"Travelers411" Radio Show - February 18, 2017
USA Passport office.

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Hour 1

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Brenda Sprague, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Passport Services, US Department of State, Washington, D.C., USA.
www.travel.state.gov

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For more information visit www.travel.state.gov


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Jon Haggins, Host and Producer, GlobeTrotter TV, New York City, New York, USA.
www.amazon.com/gp/product/0578138972
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www.youtube.com/globetrottertv3

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For more information visit www.amazon.com/gp/product/0578138972 and www.facebook.com/jonhaggins.9 and www.youtube.com/globetrottertv3


Guests Include:

Brenda Sprague, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Passport Services, US Department of State, Washington, D.C., USA.
www.travel.state.gov

Jon Haggins, Host and Producer, GlobeTrotter TV, New York City, New York, USA.
www.amazon.com/gp/product/0578138972
www.facebook.com/jonhaggins.9
www.youtube.com/globetrottertv3

Hour 2

Topics Include:

Link to this segment

Becky Cushing, Sanctuary Director, Mass Audubon's Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries, Lenox, Massachusetts, USA.
www.massaudubon.org
www.massaudubon.org/pleasantvalley

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Click here for the Mass Audubon's Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries Directory listing where you'll find links to all interviews with Mass Audubon's Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries in one place.

Click here for more info and links to all interviews featuring Becky Cushing.

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
https://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19729

For more information visit www.massaudubon.org and www.massaudubon.org/pleasantvalley


Guests Include:

Becky Cushing, Sanctuary Director, Mass Audubon's Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries, Lenox, Massachusetts, USA.
www.massaudubon.org
www.massaudubon.org/pleasantvalley

Hour 3

Topics Include:

Link to this segment

Click here to listen to Alison Metcalfe, Executive Vice President United States and Canada, Tourism Ireland interviewed by Stephanie Abrams without commercials.

Alison Metcalfe, Executive Vice President United States and Canada, Tourism Ireland, New York City, New York, USA.
www.ireland.com

Ireland Historic Sites, Attraction, Cultural Festivals, Year Round Temperate Climate

Travel Expert and Radio Show Host Stephanie Abrams is Joined by Alison Metcalfe, Executive Vice President United States and Canada for Tourism Ireland the official tourism department for the Island of Ireland to discuss the numerous reasons to visit. Alison says it has never been easier to get to Ireland from the United States because of new air services available from cities like Miami, Boston, Chicago, Hartford and more. She says flights from the east coast of the USA typically take five hours. Alison suggests considering travel during what the travel industry calls "shoulder months" and says that because Ireland is so quick to get to even short trips can make sense.

Alison Metcalfe is excited by four record years of American travel to Ireland including 1.4 million visits by Americans last year. In 2013 travel hit the 1 million mark for the first time. She attributes the increases to ease of air access, a 30 year high in value of the US Dollar to the Euro and Pound Sterling as well, of course, as the work that Tourism Ireland is doing to help educate travelers about all the wonderful things to do and see in Ireland and make traveling within the Island more accessible.

Once in Ireland visitors have a lot of options in spending their time and exploring. They can choose to explore Ireland's rugged coast, venture inland, search out historic or cultural attractions, divide time between Belfast and Dublin or do a mixture of all of the above. Some of the most popular routes are to drive Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way seeking out historic attractions. Ireland's Ancient East is another popular option for travelers to explore.

Alison says that many younger travelers are finding ways to enjoy the country with shorter stays and there are great vacation experiences to be had regardless of age.

The country is replete with great drives and interesting things to do along the way. Stephanie Abrams says that the signage throughout the country is wonderful and Tourism Ireland has had a large helping hand in making sure that noteworthy historic and cultural sites are promoted on unique, easy to see signage throughout the country. She says that even travelers with a firm itinerary will find themselves adding impromptu stops along the way.

Stephanie Abrams is a genuine Ireland Travel Expert and has made dozens of trips to the Island to explore, learn and enjoy the country. Part of what draws her back time and again is the warm Irish welcome, the attitude of Cead Mile Failte or translated "a hundred thousand welcomes".

Stephanie mentions the Inishowen peninsula as an interesting part of the country with land features that jut out and essentially wrap around Northern Ireland. Stephanie describes Inishowen as looking like the state of Maine in the USA.

If flying from the east coast of the USA there is a newer option for travelers to fly directly from Bradley International Airport in Hartford, Connecticut. Bradley (BDL) is much smaller than other international airports in the region such as New York City's JFK or Newark, New Jersey's Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR). Because of its smaller size it is easier to access and traverse without the need to make long inter-terminal treks or walks from security to boarding gates. Other advantages of Newark or JFK are the comparably low cost of parking and reduced traffic in the area. Travelers can fly with Aer Lingus into Dublin.

Alison mentions a historical attraction in Dublin for those with an interest in Irish History. There is a new visitor experience located on the original site of the 1916 rebellion also known as the Easter Rising or Easter Rebellion of 1916. Visitors can witness history in a commemoration of the uprising at the General Post office (GPO) on O'Connell Street where history took place.

Stephanie remarks that her good friend Mark Leslie, based in Dublin and of Castle Leslie Heritage, is the CEO and Founder of the Martello Media design firm which worked on the permanent exhibit/attraction for GPO Witness History.

Another noteworthy new addition to Ireland's patchwork of interactive visitor experience offerings is EPIC Ireland which Alison describes as a tribute to the story of the Irish Diaspora, of the famous and not so famous lives of those who emigrated from Ireland to end up in the new worlds of the United States, Canada, Australia to go on to work in industries such as the arts, culture, science and business. EPIC Ireland is located in Dublin's historic Customs Building in its downstairs. Stephanie says visitors could easily spend weeks pouring over the huge amount of information on display at EPIC Ireland, but the average person might typically spend about forty-five minutes to one hour.

Stephanie says that today's Ireland is a feast for the stomach as well as the soul and has undergone a food revolution in the last 20 years. She says that gourmets and gourmands, connoisseurs and foodies will delight in the foods of Ireland.

Some of Irelands regions that are the topic of discussion in this segment are Kinsale, which is south of County Cork. Travelers can drive westward along the coast and find Skellig Michael which was used as the backdrop for scenes shot in 2015 for the film "Star Wars the Last Jedi". Stephanie suggests visiting Mizen Head. She says when looking at a map of Ireland it's towards the center along the southern shore line. She says if you see Kinsale in County Cork on the map to look due west for Mizen Head. Stephanie says Mizen Head is a fascinating visit but it's not alone. On a recent trip Stephanie revisited Tinturn Abbey in County Wexford (not to be confused with the Tinturn Abbey located in England). She also suggests Newgrange, Boyne Valley, and Ceide Fields – the location of an archeological dig that exposed a 6000 year old agrarian community, as other day trips and areas worth exploring.

Alison Metcalfe tells us that for those looking to experience a bit of Irish medieval history the sites of Clonmacnoise, Kilkenny Castle, Powerscourt and the Viking quarter around Waterford and Wexford are all worth a visit.

Alison says that one of the missions of Tourism Ireland and Irish tourism has been focusing on bringing storytellers and members of the community onto sites in order to bring places to life so visitors can get a sense of what life was like in medieval times. She says there are many day-trips that can be arranged for those based out of Dublin for their trip. Alison says Powerscourt, for example, is an easy reach at about forty minutes from the Dublin area. Stephanie interjects a bit of trivia that one of her friends Sarah Slazenger of the Slazenger Estate owns Powerscourt House and Gardens. Sarah's great-grandfather Albert Slazenger credited with inventing the modern tennis ball.

Other perennial Irish favorites such as Giants Causeway are always worth a trip. Stephanie says that street information signs indicating various attractions and sites are scattered throughout the Island and are well marked for tourists who are driving.

Another interesting site is Craggaunowen a 16th century castle in Clare which is the ancestral home of the MaCnamaras. Today it features a reconstruction of the famous leather boat that Saint Brendan of Clonfert (c. AD 484 – c. 577) built and sailed the world with. Stephanie describes the Castle as "superbly restored with people in costume playing parts of cooks/maids, etc." who explain to visitors what life was life in the castle during that era. She says there are reconstructions of huts that people would have lived in on the grounds. Stephanie mentions that in Canada there are many towns and places named Brendan or St. Brendan and this is because he visited Canada, presumably in his leather boat. This was a venue that Stephanie found because of the amazing effort Tourism Ireland has taken to mark sites of interest.

Ireland is obviously famous for its Golf and a fairly easy Golf destination to get to especially from the United States' east coast. In many cases it might take less time in the air to get from the east coast of the USA to Ireland than from New York to California. Stephanie marvels that about one third of all Links courses are located in Ireland and about half of those are just in County Donegal. Alison shares that Ireland is divided into many golfing regions. Two famous golf courses are the Royal County Down and Royal Portrush. Royal County Down was recently ranked by Golf Digest as the world's top course. In other golf news, in 2019 the Open Champion, sometimes referred to by American's as the British Open, returns to Northern Ireland at Portrush. Also, in 2017 Portstewart will host the Irish Open sponsored by the Rory Foundation.

Thrifty, or smart, travelers might look to take advantage of what has come to be known as "smart" season travel to Ireland. This is the season from October to March where airfares, accommodations and everything else tend to be less expensive and less busy. There are plenty of things to do in Ireland year round, so regardless of season, start planning your trip now.

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Travelers411 Directory:
Click here for the Tourism Ireland Directory listing where you'll find links to all interviews with Tourism Ireland in one place.

Click here for more info and links to all interviews featuring Alison Metcalfe.

Related Travelers411 Mini Site:
http://www.travelers411.com/minisite/ireland

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
https://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19730

For more information visit www.ireland.com


Guests Include:

Alison Metcalfe, Executive Vice President United States and Canada, Tourism Ireland, New York City, New York, USA.
www.ireland.com

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Explore the magic and mystery of Ireland's many diverse counties and find out about its unique history and culture. Ireland has wonderful year-round tourism opportunities ranging the spectrum from bustling city life to secluded inland and coastal towns an ...
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