Wikivoyage:Tourist office/Archives/2014/August

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traveling east to west on US highway 90[edit]

Where is the "Grotto of the Redemption located? It's off of Route 90 but cannot remember where it is located exactly? Iowa, maybe? Asked by: Patsy DPatsy DeMarco (talk) 01:33, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

The w:Grotto of the Redemption is a religious monument located in West Bend, Iowa, in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sioux City, according to its article on Wikipedia. I can't find a Route 90 in Iowa; US90 runs TX to FL and I-90 Boston to Seattle. K7L (talk) 02:12, 5 August 2014 (UTC)
It's close-ish to Interstate 90: get off at Exit 102 in Fairmont, Minnesota and follow Minnesota 15 south - it will turn into Iowa 15 at the state line. The grotto is about an hour off the Interstate (65 miles).
Happy travels!
-- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 02:19, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

Southeast Asia[edit]

A friend and I are about to embark on a 6 week voyage to Southeast Asia, however, we've never traveled on such a large scale/horizon/time frame before and we have no idea where to start. We are also thinking about making a side voyage to China (Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong), South Korea, and Japan.

We are uncertain about where to travel, what sights to see, what things to do, what kind of itinerary to make (do we plan everything ahead of time or do things ad-hoc as we feel we've completed the current location), what kind of accommodation plans do we make (same thing as before), should we perform currency conversions now or do them in the country as we need to, how do you get around, etc.

If anybody could please share their insights on any of these things, we would be extremely grateful. Asked by: 24.150.200.79 02:01, 8 August 2014 (UTC)

We have articles on Southeast Asia, China and many of the main cities & tourist towns. Also travel topics articles which may answer some of your questions. In particular, see Tips for travel in developing countries. See a doctor about travel immunisation well ahead of time.
Depending on your budget & the style of travel you want, Banana Pancake Trail might be a good starting point.
China has lots of worthwhile places beyond the ones you mention; two I really like are Xiamen and Suzhou, See also Hong Kong to Kunming overland and Yunnan tourist trail. Pashley (talk) 02:18, 8 August 2014 (UTC)
The first thing you do is pick your primary two or three countries. Six weeks may seem like a very long time, but South East Asia is huge and packed with great culture, nature and people. You have to make some clear choices if you don't want to spend most of your time in transit. Don't worry, there are no wrong choices in South East Asia and you can always expand your plans on the go :-) I've often enough decided where to start based on cheap flight deals when I was still a student. You also decide whether you want to really experience the countries you visit, or if you want to see some highlights of as many as possible through short visits. This is a matter of personal preference and also budget (long distance travels are one of the main costs of your trip). Keep in mind that two weeks in a country like India, Indonesia or China is already quite short and lots of destinations also means lots of planning. These countries are so large that you could fill months in any, when only staying one night at each interesting place. If you want to see a lot of different places, try to get a flight out of a different place from where you arrive, so you don't have to loop. International return flights from different locations are sometimes much more expensive. What I often do myself is decide the start and end point of my trip and arrange in advance for a cheap Asian flight back to my arrival airport. I never spend much time in my arrival city upon arrival, so that I can allow myself to return a day or two so early and see it then. That way, I don't have to worry about missing my flight while also not spending too much time in one city.
I myself always make a rough list of destinations beforehand, but rather to get a feel of the area and because it's fun than to have a set journey. I never stick to it, because it's so great to be able to stay around another day if you really like a place or to make a detour because you meet another traveller who has the best tip in the world. I tend to book accommodation for the first two days after arrival, but the rest I do as I go. Nowadays, I like to get a local SIM card with internet access; that makes booking ahead locally easy. As for money, I always change a small amount before I go, but that's mostly just in case and because the lines for airport ATM's can get long in some places as many travellers arrive there. Once you're away from the airport you just hit an ATM for more. Check individual destinations, but in most Asian countries access to your money is not a big problem. That said, always keep some spare cash in case of a power outage or something like that, as it does happen, especially but not only in more remote areas.
In the end, in my opinion, you don't have to worry too much. As long as you have your vaccinations, money and your passport, you'll generally find your way enough in this region of the world. Happy travels; it will be a great experience for sure. JuliasTravels (talk) 08:34, 8 August 2014 (UTC)

The origin of Waterloo[edit]

The origin of Waterloo Asked by: A. J. Wren31.49.45.93

Here is what I believe you are looking for. ϒpsilon (talk) 08:55, 12 August 2014 (UTC)

hotel rates[edit]

Asked by: 75.171.39.57 14:25, 13 August 2014 (UTC) how do I find the lowest hotel room rates in USA

Our destination articles have a "Sleep" section. Look for the "Budget" subsection under that.
If low rates are important to you, avoid hotels near major tourist attractions or in the center of major cities; things a few miles away are likely to be considerably cheaper. Pashley (talk) 22:21, 13 August 2014 (UTC)

German in Croatia[edit]

The fact that many signs include Italian and English is not a surprise. But many signs are also in German. Is Croatia really a popular country among Germans? Asked by: 2.245.105.0 02:28, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

Germans are by far the largest nationality group visiting Croatia followed by the Austrians. --Traveler100 (talk) 06:11, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
I spoke German mostly when I was in Croatia. There is a long connection with Germany, and even during the communist era it was possible to German to vacation in Croatia and for Croatians to work in Germany. Andrewssi2 (talk) 02:34, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

Abbreviation "Ag" in German place names[edit]

This question is for a friend of mine whose research into her family's genealogy has taken her to a town called Gägelow Ag. Sternberg, in what's now Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. Does anyone have any idea what "ag." stands for/signifies? I came up empty on Google and speak no German myself. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 01:37, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

I'll copy this question to the Wikipedia Language Reference Desk. --50.100.184.117 02:11, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
Actually I'm not familiar with this abbreviation, however it is common for German places with the same names to differentiate themselves in similar ways. In this case it appears Gägelow is a district of the town of Sternberg, which is different from another town called Gägelow. ( https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sternberg )
German Wikipedia has a list of definitions for AG, although I can't see one that applies to this scenario. Andrewssi2 (talk) 02:30, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, it is obvious now :) If your friend was searching for genealogy records then they may well go to the Amtsgericht (district court), which is abbreviated to 'Ag.' in correspondence.
Therefore the town's name does not contain 'Ag.', it is just part of the address of the local court there. Andrewssi2 (talk) 02:46, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
The Language Reference Desk produced the same answer. --50.100.184.117 18:47, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
My friend and myself both thank you, Andrewssi2. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 19:02, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

Original location for Sunshine Airport in Mario Kart 8[edit]

This is a question regarding an place that has delfino stuff that has never been there in real life as the creators made the ships, race tracks and planes including some geographic lands that come from Hawaii or other west coast state. The ships and some other stuff is only in the game and the rest of it including the buildings, mountains, sun, sand and the sky are real and can be seen when you visit the area. I'm trying to figure out which city and state this thing is originally at, but not visible in real life. Also, airports aren't usually with ships and the planes and other airport related stuff are in areas with grass and some road. I see there's a comment by Brandondorf asking where this was found in so he could find it in Google maps which is this google + post on a video where they race against each other somewhere in the United States. Asked by: HappyLogolover2011 (talk) 21:18, 13 August 2014 (UTC)

Hi HappyLogolover2011! Sorry to say, but because people are generally only familiar with places near where they live or where they've otherwise have spent longer periods, it's unlikely that anyone can answer your question correctly. Have you tried e-mailing the developers of the game, they might be able to answer? It is also possible that the place in the video game is not exactly modeled after a real place. As they have added an airport, they could very well have added or removed e.g an extra island too and in that case it would be impossible to find the place as it doesn't exist. You could play around with Google Earth, but the chance that you will find the place isn't very big. ϒpsilon (talk) 07:51, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
There are mountains that make that look like they are far away from the ground on a state, but I will ask them if I can find where to email them or use the forums to do so. Also, some islands here like the game are like that.--HappyLogolover2011 (talk) 00:36, 23 August 2014 (UTC)

Travelling by train from London to Birmingham[edit]

I'm considering going to Birmingham, UK, next summer. I'm planning on going by plane to London and then taking the train to Birmingham. How do I go about it? London has several train stations. Which one should I use? Where is the train station located in Birmingham? How much does the trip cost? How long does it take? Do I need to buy a ticket in advance or can I buy it from the station? Do British trains have restaurant or buffet cars? Asked by: JIP (talk) 13:08, 22 August 2014 (UTC)

There are two major stations to be aware of: Birmingham New Street which is in the centre of the city; and Birmingham International which is outside of the city at the airport. From the London airports you are first going to need to take a train into the city then you can get a direct train to Birmingham. You should also consider getting a flight direct to Birmingham airport if possible from your location as it is a much more civilised airport to get through. The intercity trains will have buffet facilities. If you have not done so already check out the articles for Birmingham (England) and Rail travel in the United Kingdom. --Traveler100 (talk) 14:21, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
The station in London will be Euston. If you fly into Heathrow, the easiest way to get there is the Heathrow Express train to Paddington and then a taxi. Instead of the taxi you can take the Underground ("tube"), which you can do without changing trains if you're willing to walk a little at each end. At Paddington, when you get off the train, ignore the tube station in front of you, turn left around the ends of the tracks and head for the physically separate station for the Circle and Hammersmith & City Lines, which share tracks there. Board any eastbound train and ride 4 stops to Euston Square station. It is then less than a 1/4 mile walk to Euston main line station. A cheaper option than the Heathrow Express is to take the tube all the way from the airport, but it's slower and tube trains can get very crowded if you will be doing this in rush hour. The simplest route is to board any eastbound train from one of the airport tube stations (at two of the stations, all trains are eastbound) and ride about 18 stops to Green Park station; then change to the northbound Victoria Line (walking a surprisingly long distance within the station to do that) and ride 3 stops to Euston. As for the question about needing to buy a ticket in advance, the answer is likely that you will save considerable money if you do this and commit to using a particular train, but then you risk missing that train because of your flight being late. I've only used long-distance trains in Britain when I've had a Britrailpass and didn't need to worry about that, so I'm not up on the details. --50.100.184.117 18:21, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, from London the trains to Birmingham depart from Euston station. As of early 2008 there were frequent trains taking you to Birmingham in 2h or so. You could buy tickets at the station, and I remember them as quite expensive. They are probably cheaper if buying them beforehand online. If you are going to a trade fair or concert, you may need to get off at Birmingham International station 10km before the centre, but most likely you want to go to Birmingham New Street downtown because that one is right in the city centre.
London's airports can be quite busy. Birmingham has a decent sized airport, so if you aren't interested in London itself (or rail travel in the UK), consider flying to Birmingham. Also check out the articles Traveler100 suggested - they are quite good.ϒpsilon (talk) 18:55, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
I would disagree that flying to Birmingham is always practical. If you have an option to fly direct to Birmingham then great, however truth is most flights into the UK (with often the best prices) are into London Heathrow or another London airport.
To get to Birmingham from London Heathrow is easy, albeit expensive. Take the Heathrow Express to London Paddington Station, and then take a fast intercity train to Birmingham (with a change at Reading , would take 2.0 to 2.5 hours.
To Get to Birmingham from another airport, such as Gatwick, is more problematic because you need to basically cross central London somehow to get to a the right station. Taking a bus would probably be better option in this case. Andrewssi2 (talk) 01:17, 23 August 2014 (UTC)
Okay, Paddington to Reading to Birmingham is also possible, but Paddington to Euston to Birmingham seems likely to be the faster route. --70.49.168.18 04:04, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I live in Birmingham, and you can get direct to Birmingham Moor Street (city centre) from London Marylebone in 1.75 hours and it will be a bit cheaper than going from Euston. Euston to Birimingam New Street takes 1.5 hours, and the trains (IMO) are nicer. If you want to find out times, costs, etc http://www.thetrainline.com is the place. --TrogWoolley (talk) 11:02, 26 August 2014 (UTC)