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easyBus provides the answer to London Bridge travel disruption

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With no direct London Bridge to Gatwick airport rail services between the 23rd – 31st August, why not use easyBus to provide an easy and convenient alternative?

Our non-stop service runs every 20 minutes, offering transfers from Waterloo to Gatwick in just 60 minutes and from as little as £2.

Book at easybus.com! The earlier you book the cheaper it is.

Dubai beaches just got even dreamier

Airport visitors flying out of southern airports such as Heathrow and Gatwick can't board Dubai-bound planes quickly enough to sample the celebrity playground.

They go in search of all-year-round sun, sand and shopping - and the sands now hold even greater attraction for them. That's because Dubai has just taken a huge stride towards seaside ecotourism by joining the international Blue Flag program that guarantees conformity to stringent environmental standards. On the coast that contains some of Dubai's most stunning resorts, the Jumeriah and Mamzar beaches have just been certified to meet Blue Flag's international standards of water quality, safety and overall environmental management. Other beaches are awaiting the same certification.

Tourism in Dubai is rising healthily. Last year, the emirate welcomed 9.9 million international tourists, a 9% jump compared to 2011. Pascal Maigniez, head of its Department of Tourism, said Dubai's aim is to double the number of tourists by the end of the decade. They flock to giant shopping malls, such as the Al Ghurair Centre in Deira and the exclusive BurJaman Centre. On an equally lavish scale is the imposing Dubai skyline, which is dominated by the towering Burj Khalifa, at 828 metres (2,716ft) the world's tallest building.

Copyright © Press Association 2013

Couples spending Valentine’s in UK

Valentine’s Day lovers appear to be tiring of the traditional romantic holiday hotspots, a new poll has revealed.

Venice, Rome and Paris all failed to feature in a table of the top 10 Valentine destinations, according to a survey by Gatwick airport. Some UK couples are choosing to forgo the rom-com staples of Europe’s more romantic cities and spend the day closer to home, with Edinburgh, Belfast and Dublin all making the cut. Geneva is still the number one Valentine destination for couples flying from Gatwick, but this year Edinburgh comes in third, Belfast seventh and Dublin eighth.

Other cities that featured in the top 10 include Barcelona, Grenoble in France and Dubai in the Middle East, famed for its shopping and its luxury resorts. This year’s Valentine’s week is set to the busiest yet at Gatwick, with almost half a million (476,000) passengers expected to pass through its terminals. With the volumes of traffic predicted, it may be wise to book seats on an airport transfer service in order to guarantee arriving at the airport on time.

“As usual, European mini break destinations are proving popular but it's interesting to see less traditional cities, like Belfast, hitting the spot for Valentine's breaks this year,” Gatwick terminals operations chief Nick Henderson said.

Copyright Press Association 2013

Seafood lovers head to Goa festival

Seafood lovers will be heading from far and wide to West India this weekend as the Goa tourism seafood festival takes centre stage.

The event near the Caranzalem beach (NIWS grounds) offers a range of delicacies at over 75 different food stalls and opens just a day before the Goa Carnival begins in Panaji. There are also three outstation food stalls providing food from Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat and Arunachal Pradesh for people to sample, and there will be no lack of entertainment during the course of the five days either. Former member of the girl-band Viva, Anushka Manchanda, will sing on the opening day of the festival. She will be followed by the likes of Remo Fernandes, Sonia Shirsat, Lorna, Farhan Akhtar and his band and the rock bands Parikrama and Agnee.

Wendell Rodricks will also host a fashion show and, after two preliminary cooking contests in North and South Goa, celebrity chef Kunal Vijaykar will hold a final ‘cookfest’ before crowning the Chef de Goa on Sunday. More than 50 floats were confirmed well in advance for the carnival and organisers are expecting in the region of 100 in total, with prizes of Rs 5,000 to Rs 50,000 to be handed out to the best ones by the tourism department. And neither the Goa tourism seafood festival nor the Goa Carnival are out of reach for food lovers in the UK as flights to the state are readily available from the likes of London Heathrow and Gatwick, usually via Mumbai or Delhi.

Copyright Press Association 2013

Bulgaria targets tourism boost

The Bulgarian tourism board will launch a new initiative in September in a bid to tempt twice as many visitors to the country in the next 10 to 15 years.

Deputy minister of economy, energy and tourism, Ivo Marinov, hopes 'a discovery to share' will encourage 25 per cent growth between now and 2018. Past surveys conducted by the tourism board showed nine in 10 people who visit Bulgaria enjoy their stay, which will hearten tourist chiefs as they aim to attract more holidaymakers.

Tourists flock to attractions like the Alexander Nevski Church in Sofia, the Roman Theatre in Plovdiv and the Sea Garden in Varna. The St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is among the largest Eastern Orthodox cathedrals in the world and acts as one of the capital's symbols and major tourist attractions. Philippopolis is a historical building in the city centre of Plovdiv that was constructed during the reign of Emperor Trajan between 98 and 117 AD.

Bulgaria also boasts beautiful sandy beaches along the Black Sea coast and affordable ski resorts, which encourage beginners to hit the slopes without spending over the odds. British holidaymakers keen to sample what Bulgaria has to offer can fly to the eastern European nation from major UK airports such as Heathrow and Gatwick.

Copyright Press Association 2013