Aloha Hawaii

Hawaii is a fantastic place to have a family vacation. Kelly and her family had so much fun at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa on the island of Oahu. They enjoyed days filled with ocean breezes, sunshine and the amazing adventure that is the Waikolohe Pool area of the Aulani resort. This Pool area is actioned packed with 2 pools for families, a lazy river, raft slide and body slide. Don’t worry adults, there is also an Adults only pool in its secluded section of the resort.

Kelly’s family loved the welcome basket in their room upon arrival courtesy of Travel With Nikki. The menehune scavenger hunt was a big hit with the kids. The half day Pearl Harbor tour was the perfect amount of time and Kelly’s family was so happy they didn't try to do the tour on their own. Snorkeling at Aulani’s private Rainbow Reef was a great way to introduce kids to snorkeling in a controlled environment and comes highly recommend by Kelly and her family. A short walk down to the Paradise Cove Luau was a fantastic addition to the trip and allowed the family to view a variety of traditional Polynesian and Hawaiian dances, and of course amazing Luau food!

Aulani provides a perfect family getaway that is filled with Hawaiian adventure and culture.

Vacation doesn't mean leaving your home and pets un-loved.

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Winter weather season, is the perfect time to plan a warm weather getaway. Travel with Nikki puts so much time and attention into your important vacation plans and details making sure you are all set to have a fantastic time away.

What is often overlooked during the vacation planning process is who will take care of your home and furry family members while you are away. We wanted to share with you a fantastic resource with Southwest Michigan- A Single Ray of Hope’s Personal Assistance & Concierge Service. Mary Beth Lyons provides a trusted and insured business with her While you are Away & Pet Sitting Service.  

We all know that pets are more comfortable staying in their own home environment and Mary Beth can help them stay cozy and comfy with home visits. Having a reputable business checking on your home while you are away is crucial.  Winter weather, rain storms and other unexpected weather can cause havoc and destruction while you are away, so you want a trusted person checking on your home for you.  Mary Beth has caught serious water damage, power outages, inoperative refrigerators; teen friends making themselves at home in the outdoor hot tub, and more.  Hiring a trusted business provides that peace of mind knowing that you’ll be kept informed if problems surface. A Single Ray of Hope makes it look as if you are home; they can even do the grocery shopping prior to your return so you don’t have to run out just as soon as you’ve returned from your journey. And best of all, They will even leave the lights on for you!  

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Make sure to reach out to Mary Beth and A Single Ray of Hope NOW to secure your services during the upcoming busy travel season.

Mary Beth Lyons


Travel: The Perfect Gift

Still looking for the perfect gift for the person that has everything? It might be time to think about giving the gift of travel this holiday season.

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Why does travel make the perfect gift?

  • Travel provides memories that will last a lifetime rather than toys. clothing or items that might only be around for a few months. Think of it as the gift that keeps on giving. 

  • You don’t have to make extra room for a trip in your home. It doesn’t take over the toy room, sit in the corner for months, or collect dust on a shelf

  • Travel might actually be less expensive than all of the little gifts you would purchase individually (not to mention the wrapping paper and gift bags). 

  • Depending on when you purchase your trip, you could have extra time to save and pay for the vacation as many options don’t require payment in full at the time the reservation is made. 

  • Travel provides the perfect time for family bonding over shared experiences allowing you to connect with family. 

  • Traveling is educational for children. There is so much to be learned during the travel process (maps to navigate airports), as well as once you are in destination (the local language, culture, customs) that kids just would have exposure to otherwise. 

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Fall is here, and Spring is not far off!

Happy Fall Ya’ll!  

I hope you and your family are having a fantastic beginning to Fall. Pumpkin flavored foods are available, leaves are changing colors, and occasionally there is a crispness in the air. Kids are back into the swing of school and fall sports are in full swing.

I know it seems like a  long time away, but really Spring Break is just around the corner! If you are thinking of a warm vacation getaway with your family the time to plan is NOW! Cruise ships are filling up, plane seats are becoming scarce  and the dining reservation widow for Disney World restaurants will open up on September 29th! (I don’t even know what I”m doing for dinner tonight yet!).

Planning your vacation early will help make sure that we get you the trip of your dreams, at the best available rates. Prices for cruises, airfare and vacation packages will begin creeping up very quickly. 

Please reach out to me and let me know how I can help you have a fantastic Spring Break Vacation.  Do we already have your vacation secured? Lets make sure your flights, and all additional activities get locked in so you don’t miss out on a minute of the fun! 

Email me today to set up your complimentary Vacation Consultation. 

 Thank *´¨)

          ¸.·´¸.·*´¨) ¸.·*¨)

       (¸.·´ (¸.·´ * you *

Nikki Miller  

Travel Consultant-Owner, Travel With Nikki

p: 734-535-8865 m: 269-998-8579 


Specializing in Destination Weddings, Romance Travel, Family Travel

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South African Safari

My husband and I just got back from a 10 day stay at the Royal Malewane (RM) in South Africa. We had done a 7 day safari in 2017, but wanted to come back for a longer period of time and bring my in-laws!

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First off, Royal Malewane is the most luxurious place we've ever stayed! When you arrive you at the airport you are  greeted by your Ranger/Guide then they take you on a 30 minute drive to the resort.

When you arrive at the resort there is a staff of people there to greet you and to walk you into the Lodge. The view of the Lodge is unbelievable! Liz Biden (the owner) has AMAZING taste in her décor of the resort. It is all open with beautiful views of the Bush. There is a very large watering hole that is the main view of the entire Lodge. Everything is open so there is a TON of animal activity at the Lodge. You will not be disappointed. When we had arrived our view was a baby Elephant & mom drinking water out of the watering hole! Check in is easy, they just sit you down hand you a cocktail and just start telling you the safety rules meeting. Once that's done they take you to your room.


Each room is unique.. last time we had a room where the Elephants liked to drink water and the Nyala love to come by for a visit. This time we had a room that had monkeys visiting and lots of Bird activity (which was perfect because my husband loves birding!) and we even got to see some Warthogs hanging out. I got to see a fawn and white lion walk by and an elephant drank water out of our pool too! Everyday was something different! My in-laws had a great view of the main watering hole and had lots of elephant activity everyday at their room. The rooms are very spacious and super clean. Half the room is the bathroom where you have a huge soaking tub, open shower, his and hers sinks and a toilet room. The bathroom also connects to the outside shower & deck. Half of the room is also all window and sliding doors. The porch to the house is enormous, comes with double day beds, sun chairs, and your own pool! (The water they use is friendly for all animals to drink out of). 

Everything is included at the Royale Malewane except Spa treatments. A typical day would be wake up call around 5-6am, meet at the main Lodge for tea and a light snack, first game drive around 6:30 until about 10am or so depending on what you got to see out in the Bush. Then we would head back to the Lodge and have breakfast where they have a huge buffet style of appetizers, baked goods, yogurts, cereals, meats & cheese, fruits, etc.. Then they would also hand you a hot breakfast menu that you can order your actual meal from. Some days if it was just us they would bring out individual plates of assorted things for our appetizer. Once we were done with breakfast there would be a break where we could go hang out at the lodge or our room until about 3:30pm (lunch also is anytime between breakfast and before the game drive). They always have light snacks and drinks before the game drives. We would be out from 3:30pm until about 7pm or so. Come back and be greeted with hot drinks a warm fire, then followed by dinner. Every night dinner would be in a different location on each part of the lodge. Then once dinner was done we were escorted to our rooms and welcomed to a fire and the best turn down service. It's a very strict schedule but you don't want to miss any of the drives. Everyday is different and you never know what you might be able to see out there. 

This place is SUPER private. There are only 8 rooms on the property which makes for a very intimate experience. We never had more than two other tables in the same area where we were eating breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

The Food is EXCELLENT! they have the BEST chefs preparing meals all day! Brandon was our favorite. Everyone was good, but Brandon went above and beyond. We had the pleasure of having him last year as our Chef as well! I was sick for a couple of days and couldn't handle anything but chicken soup and he always had it ready and fresh for me! We never really ate lunch because they were always feeding us too much food. Lunch was also a huge affair too! 5 course meal with dessert and appetizers!  Dinner was the same as well.. always 5-7 course meals.  I have a severe Tree Nut allergy and everyone always went above and beyond to make sure that everything was prepared correctly so my food wasn't contaminated with anything relating to Tree Nuts. Each menu (for all meals) was customized to each person, and honestly if you didn't want what they had made for your menu they would make you whatever you wanted.

My husband had this whiskey that he loved from last year and Andrew made sure that there was a full bottle the whole time in our room for him. I also was partial to this Rosé and he had it chilled for me in my fridge every night. The mini bar is always stocked and there's also an armoire that's filled with liquor, cookies, treats, water and fruit. Room service is quick and they really take care of you.

As far as staff this place has the BEST team of people working for them from the waitstaff, to managers, to General Manager, to Rangers, Trackers, Spa Staff, even the Night Guard staff! Each one is special and amazing. We had a lot of favorites from last year that we were so excited to see again, and also made some new friends. They really go above and beyond at RM. When I was sick for those 2 days...EVERYONE had checked in on me and made sure I was okay. They even called in a doctor from the next town to check my vitals and to give me some medicine just to be safe. 

For the Safaris there would be two a day. You pretty much can make your own schedule if you wanted to skip a day or a night. It all depends on what you want to do. They usually last about 3-4 hours depending on what you get to see. We upgraded to a private safari tour because we wanted a more intimate experience with Juan, head safari game ranger. When you opt for the included group safari drive, you're going with other guests who each have their own agenda, and time is limited in Winter so you may not get to see what you want to see. We loved the private experience and the more time we spent with Juan and Patrick (our tracker) they got to know us and what we liked and always ended up surprising us with incredible views and experiences! Each safari ride is pre-planned. They bring snacks and drinks on each game drive and will ask if you want a "break" and will set up this wonderful snack area on the front of the safari truck. Ask for as many "sun downs" as you can because the views of South African Sunsets are unbelievable! If you're lucky enough to catch a red one enjoy it! As far as snacks,  daytime were mainly two types of cookies, tea, coffee, hot chocolate. At night they would pack dried fruit, jerky, chips, wine, beer, sodas and liquor.

I used the spa a few times last year and once this year. Mary was my massage therapist and this little lady gives the BEST deep tissue massages! She got out every singe knot I had in my body and it was wonderful! Even if you don't have a spa appointment I would just wander in there anyway. It is a BEAUTIFUL spa!

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For the departure day, you can choose to do a morning drive if you'd like. They will drop you off around 9:30am so you have time for breakfast and to go back to your room and pack. The staff takes care of all luggage and you just check out at the reception. It's quite simple and fast. And of course like the way you came, the way you go is with a large group of staff saying farewell.

I am so happy we were able to come back to Royal Malewane. Last year's trip was amazing because it was our first time and it opened my eyes to a whole new world, this time was different because we got to do and see so much more. I would definitely go back here every year if I could. The entire adventure was incredible. I honestly have no words for how it made me feel. All I know is we walked away with incredible stories and amazing friendships. These people will always have a special place in my heart and we can't wait to go back! 

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Secrets Maroma Beach - A Romantic Getaway

My husband and I just returned from a 5 night trip to Mexico.  We simply love visiting Mexico each year as it holds a special place in our hearts since that’s where we said I do 7 years ago.  

It didn’t however start off as we had planned. We chose to go to Secrets Playa Mujeres since we had gotten married at Secrets Capri. Well let’s just say it was NOT what we had expected.  The initial wow factor was not present upon arrival, the staff was less than attentive, the room was not well taken care of and the food was at best adequate.

But never fear Nikki turned everything around for us.  We spoke with her the evening we arrived at 10:00pm and by the next morning at 11:00am we were packed up and headed to Secrets Maroma.  Nikki made this transition seamless and beyond easy. We just do not have enough words to say how thankful we are for her and all the behind the scenes things she did to salvage the rest of our trip.  When you only get one vacation a year without your kids every minute is precious.

Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe our time at Secrets Maroma Beach. The staff were so attentive both in the preferred club area as well as throughout the rest of the resort.  The pool area was large and spread out so you had a variety of options to chose from each day.  Every single set of two chairs around the pool had a table as well as umbrella which was awesome.  NO need to get up at 6:00am to rush down to get the best spot.  

The food was incredible and options at the buffet’s were plentiful too.  It didn’t matter if you went to the Barefoot Grill poolside, Pizza oven bar poolside or the French restaurant everything was cooked perfectly, flavorful and made to order.  

Each staff member made it a point to always smile and give you a friendly and sincere “Hola”! If you needed anything even if it wasn’t in their department they went above and beyond to help you with whatever it was.  

If you’re looking for a fabulous all-inclusive resort in Mexico you must visit Secrets Maroma Beach.  It’s the right balance of romantic mixed with fun to feel refreshed and recharged when your trip is over.

~ Kristin 

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Aloha Maui

Our family just came home from a wonderful 10 days in Maui! My husband and daughters had never been, and it had been over 20 years since I had last visited.

AMAZING isn't enough to describe our time. We started our trip out at a beautiful condo on the Wailea side of the island. We were so happy with the beautiful beaches and our condo that we NEVER left but for a few short hours to head for lunch over in Lahina! We lunched at Kimo's. It was excellent! That was our one and only outing except when we left the condo after 7 days and headed over to The Grand Wailea.

Nikki was AMAZING to help us plan 4 wonderful and relaxing days at this resort to end our trip with a BANG! The resort was so family friendly. We never left the pool! HA!!! We experienced the Wailea luau the second night of our stay and it was such a great experience. 

I would highly recommend Maui when traveling with your family. After meeting so many families on the beaches, we definitely heard that was the BEST island to travel to with the family in tow. Aloha! 

~Chesney S.

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Spring Break-Hard Rock Hotel Punta Cana

Nikki helped plan an amazing Spring Break/40th Birthday Trip in March of 2018. 

My family had an amazing time at Hard Rock Hotel Punta Cana and perfect warm weather. 

Working with Nikki is so easy. She helped us figure out where to go and took care of all the details. Hotel, transportation, dinner reservations, and recommendations on things to do. 

We really enjoyed the resort. It had many restaurants, lots of pools, lazy river, swim up bars, beautiful beach, nightly entertainment, shopping, and an amazing spa, really anything you could want for a great family vacation. 

This is the 3rd vacation we have taken with Nikki’s services and we really can’t recommend her enough. She takes all the stress out of the planning. It’s truly a vacation where you can sit back and relax and know Nikki has taken care of it all. 

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Escaping to the Caribbean

Cruising on the Norwegian Escape~February 2018~Kim F.

Thanks to Nikki, we just returned home from a wonderful week in the Caribbean on the Norwegian Escape.  When we decided a little last minute to book a family vacation in February, Nikki came through with fantastic options and pricing.  With her guidance, we chose a ship and itinerary that were a perfect fit for our family of four (2 adults and two children, ages 8 and 6).  

Our ship left from the Port of Miami and traveled to the Caribbean and the Bahamas.  It was 7 days of pure bliss! The ship is quite large and almost brand new.  We enjoyed the wide variety of food venues, entertainment, and kid-friendly activities. 

The highlights of our adventures on the islands were bobsledding and navigating Dunn's River Falls in Jamaica as well as Stingray City and snorkeling in Grand Cayman. Great Stirrup Cay (Norwegian's private island) was a fantastic beach day enjoyed by all.  

Initially, we did not have high expectations for the kids club onboard.  However, after one visit to Splash Academy the first night of our trip, our kids literally begged us to attend each and every day thereafter.  The staff was friendly, cheerful, and engaged as they had themes for the kids each evening of the cruise.  It provided a perfect mix of quality family time and a few hours of alone time with the hubby (which was a nice surprise)! 

Nikki's thoughtful planning, quality recommendations, and helpful tips ensured that our vacation was truly a "homerun!"  Each and every trip that we book in the future will be through Travel with Nikki!  

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Enchanting Ireland

I just wanted to send Travel With Nikki a thousand thank yous for helping us with our trip to Ireland. We had gone to Ireland before and booked the entire trip ourselves online.  What a difference when you use the expertise of a travel agent!  Nikki, you made our entire trip stress free! I never double checked our tickets or confirmed our lodging reservations because I knew that you had it taken care of. One of the big mistakes that we had made on our first trip to Ireland is that we did not purchase travel insurance. We had no idea that we needed it and we never thought that our health insurance in the States would not cover us abroad. You don’t really think of those things when you travel.  You educated us on the importance of having specific coverage for your trip.

Another difference with traveling with you is the fabulous upgrades that we received! Our rooms in the castles were so much nicer than before. We were upgraded to a Jr Suite and it was such a fun surprise to see the chocolate covered strawberrys and bottle of sherry waiting for us when we arrived!


Adventurous Vietnam and Thailand

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Nikki put together a 2-week honeymoon for my husband and I to Thailand and Vietnam.  I would like to start off by saying she listened to exactly what we wanted out of the trip.  I simply told her we aren't the museum-going type of clients, that we prefer to be outdoors and love challenging physical activities.  She NAILED it with our activities!

In Vietnam, we went on a 3 day cruise on Halong Bay on the Heritage Cruise Lines boat The Violet. This was our favorite thing we did the entire trip.  This Vietnamese, luxurious, relaxing cruise was unbelievable- we cruised around a chain of 1900 islands for 3 days.  We hiked into a monkey cave, we kayaked through a fishing village, and we visited a beach.  This is an absolute MUST if you ever want to see Halong Bay

Next she sent us to Ho Chi Minh city- while the cruise was our favorite activity we did, this city was our favorite of them all.  We learned so much about the exporting system here and were able to visit many historical things that helped us to understand what Vietnam runs on- rice exporting being number one.  

While in Ho Chi Minh, we drove out to the Mekong Delta and did a guided, day cruise.  On this cruise, we rode bicycles through the rice fields, learned to make rice paper in a local's very own home, and enjoyed a 5 course meal on the water at the end of the day.  We would highly suggest this day trip if you ever find yourself near Ho Chi Minh.

Next we flew to Chiang Mai.  While there, we visited an elephant sanctuary.  This was a very neat experience.  We also visited the night market both nights we were there- this is where they shut a main street down and local vendors set up shop every night of the week for a few hours to sell their goods.  This was great for getting all of our souvenirs for the trip!

After Chiang Mai, our last stop was Koh Samui- an island off the coast of Thailand.  We stayed at a beach resort for 2 days of rest and relaxation.  

We appreciate Nikki for all of her hard work she did putting this trip of a lifetime together for us.  She listened to what we wanted to get out of this trip and truly delivered.  Thank you Nikki!  We will be back!! ~Kara & Chip

Cancun Couples Getaway

Thank you so much to Nikki for hleping us plan an amazing vacation. We apprectated your assistance in helping us find the right resort for this trip. It was so reassuring knowing that we could contact you through the travel app with any qeustions we had. We loved how you checked in with us a few times during our trip, it helped us know that we were not traveling alone and if needed backup was only a message away. 

My husband and I were looking to take a vacation and we simply love Mexico so again decided to go back. We got married 7 years ago in Riviera Maya so needless to say Mexico holds a special place in our hearts.  We traditionally stay at smaller boutique style all inclusive adults only resorts however this time we decided to do something a bit different! Let's just be clear we stuck with the ADULTS only part :-).  We decided to stay in Cancun this time around and thanks to Nikki we chose the Riu Palace Las Americanas.  I was a bit nervous to try a significantly larger resort but thought as long as their are drinks, pools and food we'd be good. 


We were picked up from the airport by a shared transfer and arrived at our resort at 1:00pm.  The lobby was truly amazing. It overlooked the infinity pool and just over that was the beautiful blue ocean! The woodwork and paintings in the lobby were spectacular as well.  We were greeted with champagne and a very friendly staff going above and beyond to help us and get us checked in.  Once checked in they brought our bags up to our room.  We stayed in an Jr. Suite partial ocean view. A fabulous room to us isn't that big of a deal. We have stayed in Villas, have had our own private pools and hot tubs etc.  A basic room is fine for us as well.  The room was clean, big and very welcoming!!!.  The bathroom was huge which was a nice plus!!!!!

This resort while bigger than where we've previously stayed kept things close together so it didn't feel so big.  There were 3 pools. 2 infinity one regular.  Two were quieter pools while the other had lots of music and action.  The service around the pool for drinks was awesome! It wasn't packed but busy for sure.  The swim up bar was covered so it was nice to get some shade as well!!!!.  There was also another bar in the big pool area to get drinks at as well, though you really never needed to get up because the service was incredible.  The activities team who did volleyball, games, dancing lessons, etc was friendly, funny and very professional as well.

Onto the best part the food!!!! Like I said before we have been to a lot of all inclusive places and this place by far has the best food ever! The selection was out of this world. I am a vegetarian so it's usually salad and past for me at places like this.  Not here. EVERY SINGLE DAY they had an entire vegetarian selection at the buffet hot and cold!  Fried chick pea balls, tofu done several ways! I was so impressed.  What I liked about this resort as well were the food options all day long.  There was a 24 hour food café, buffet style so if you were hungry in between meals you could run in there. They changed it breakfast and lunch.  The restaurants were NO reservations which was awesome as well.  They too were very accommodating to my vegetarian requests. ALL restaurants were also open every single night which you normally don't get with most places. That was another plus in our book! I hate to plan on vacation as one of the reasons we go on vacation is to break free from the normal planning and everyday life!

5 star rating from us for this resort! Great time, great escape, the beach had a pier on it so you could walk out as well!!!!  Oh Almost forgot. There were 2 other Riu resorts one you could walk to next door that you could also go to if you wanted. They had a sports bar next door if that's more your speed.  We didn't visit but heard people talking about it!


Hard Rock + Riviera Maya= An Amazing Vacation

My husband and I recently arrived back home from our amazing trip to Riviera Maya. When we originally talked about planning a trip and talking about where we wanted to go we weren't sure where to even start. While we were trying to figure out where to go I told Chris we should contact Nikki for help planning our vacation and oh my goodness are we so glad we did! She made our whole vacation planning process so much easier. After answering a few questions she was able to provide us with ideas for places we could go. After talking, we decided that Mexico would be the place to go. The fun part was choosing where and when. Of course, she gave us amazing and beautiful options all that would have been great for our first trip to Mexico. We ended up choosing The Hard Rock Rivieria Maya and never looked back. Nikki was able to book our room, flights, transportation and excursions...we didn't have to do any of the thinking and worrying which as we all know is the most stressful part of going on any vacation. 

When we got to The Hard Rock we were instantly welcomed and given a margarita...which I might add was one of THE BEST ones I have EVER had! The staff was amazing and definitely made sure we didn't lift a finger and had anything and everything we wanted. We eventually made it up to our room and the view alone was amazing! We stayed in the Sky Terrace suite that they offer and it was absolutely perfect! Anything you could ever want in a room while away from home was there. Our room faced the Ocean so it was wonderful to get to wake up to that view every day. Their beaches and pools were great. We never had to worry about not having a chair to lounge and relax on while soaking up the sun. The servers made sure you always had a my case one made sure I always had three Coronas not sure why, never ordered anything, but he brought them to me anyways and continued like clockwork the entire time we were lounging by the pool every day. Their food was great at the entire resort. We did not have a bad meal at all. They definitely pay attention to detail when it comes to plating and the servers take very good care of you. 

During our stay, we had decided to do a couple excursions. The first excursion we did was a Couple's Dream Swim with the dolphins. This was hands down the best part of the vacation (aside from soaking up the sun and just relaxing) and an experience that neither one of us will ever forget! They are such beautiful creatures and so smart! We highly recommend that if you are going to do the dolphin swim (which you should) paying to do the couple's swim. You get one on one time with the dolphin instead of having to share the time with a larger group. The other excursion we did was Chichen Itza. Being able to visit the ruins was a great experience and one we can cross off of our bucket list. It's amazing to get to see all that remains from such a long time ago and all that the Mayans were able to build. That alone is impeccable and unbelievable. The only downfall was that we were gone all day and we're pretty positive that our transfer drove 50 km below the speed limit for about an hour to make sure that our tour guide could say absolutely everything he wanted to. 

Overall, our experience was definitely one for the books and we can't wait to go back. Next time we'd chose a different resort just so that we can experience another all inclusive and see what they have to offer. But any trips that we do plan in the future we will definitely be going through Nikki and seeking her help because she helped make this trip as amazing as it was. We cannot thank her enough! So THANK YOU NIKKI!!!! 

~Anna and Chris

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REVIEW- Juneau Whale Watching

Combo Tour Whale Watching and Mendenhall Glacier

 I reserved this shore excursion for my husband and I through ShoreTrips. com, one of my preferred vendors for shore excursions. I did not want to pick a Cruise Ship provided tour for whale watching, as I wanted something smaller and more intimate. I was so happy with Dolphin Jet Boats! Everything was on time, professional, and safe. I would recommend this tour for anyone looking for a great opportunity to see Whales.

Our tour started with check in at the tram stations. The bus left promptly at our departure time and there was a short 15-minute ride to the marina. Our bus driver was Alicia and she was amazing! It was so wonderful to her about her life (as a race car driver, school bus driver, and driver for Dolphin Jet Boats). She also did a wonderful job of explaining different sites in Juneau to us, pointing out wildlife, and talking about the history of the town. 


At the docks in Auke Bay we met with our captain Derek and Naturalist Michelle. They took us to your boat. It fit 30 people, was enclosed with windows that opened and shut, as well as viewing decks in the front and rear of the boat. After receiving our safety instructions we headed out in the bay to look for whales. We were one of the first expeditions of the day at 3pm and our guides didn’t know exactly where the whales would be for the day. 

It was about a 10-minute ride until we started to see a few whale watching boats gathered together. Once Michelle and Derek saw there were whales in the area they slowed the boat way down and opened the front and back viewing sections. There was plenty of space for the 30 of us to spread out and everyone had room to move. I was so happy with my choice in whale watching provider, as some of the boats near us were very large with people crammed out on deck to try to get a good view. 

 On our trip we got to see some amazing Humpback Whales bubble net feeding. There were at least 8 whales feeding together. Normally humpback whales are solitary animals, but they have learned to get together to herd fish into a group. They then dive below the fish, and approach from below shooting straight up with their mouths open to get as many fish into their mouths as they can. We saw this happen about 5 different times. It was an amazing site to see. Michelle informed us that this bubble net feeding is very rare, and she herself has only seen it a few times in her 2 years of hosting whale tours. 

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Humpback Whales-bubble net feeding.

 While on the boat we were offered bagels with salmon cream cheese, soda, coffee, water and hot chocolate. We spent a wonderful 60-90 minutes out with the whales and then headed back to shore. On our way back in we stopped by a marker buoy that had a small group of seals lounging around on it. Once at the docks we boarded our bus again and headed off to the Mendenhall Glacier

 It was a 15-minute ride to Mendenhall Glacier. On the drive there Michelle did a great job at giving some details about living in Juneau, such as how everything comes in by barge or plane. In the winters there is 1 barge a week, but in the summers there can be 2-3 barges a week.  Included in the tour was a wrist band for the visitors center at the Mendenhall Glacier.  At the glacier it was very rainy for our time, but still beautiful to see. There was a great visitors center with park rangers to answer ay questions you might have. They also did several small presentations, and there was a 20-minute movie playing in a nice theater. 

On the way back it was about a 25 minute trip to the port area. Michelle again did a wonderful job at pointing out wildlife, talking about life in Juneau, and explaining the sites along the way. The bus did 3 different drop offs for each of the different docking areas for the cruise ship.

Dolphin Jet Boats did a wonderful job with this shore excursion. I would recommend them if you are looking for a small whale watching tour, that is on time, clean, and has friendly staff!

Surprise Disney World Trip

Nikki did an awesome job planning our trip to Walt Disney World! We stayed at Port Orleans Riverside in March fo 2017, and were able to surprise our kids with our trip the morning we left.  When I started researching Disney I was overwhelmed with all the information on the web, pinterest, social media, blog sites, etc. Nikki customized our trip and made it such a personal experience. I appreciated that she took the time to answer all my email questions and met with us personally before our trip to go over the itinerary. We had a great time on our Disney trip! The trip she planned was awesome! Thank you, Nikki for all your wonderful knowledge, experience and help with the trip!!!

~Neal and Brenda

Spring Break in Riviera Maya

It was such a great experience working with Nikki on our first trip to Riviera Maya Mexico for Spring Break in 2017.  Our direct flight on Miami Air out of Lansing, Michigan to Cancun, Mexico was extremely convenient and 3 1/2 hours later we were in 80-degree weather for a week!  Filling out the customs forms on the plane made it easy to get through the lines and to our luggage.  

Knowing how easily we could find our van driver to the hotel (thank you, Nikki) allowed us to arrive at our hotel in less than an hour from the time we landed, went through customs, gathered our checked luggage, and were sitting in an air conditioned van.  The ride to the Royalton Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa from The Cancun Airport was about 15-20 minutes.  

Traveling as a family of five, with two teenagers and a tween, safety is of utmost importance.  I never once felt concerned about their safety, or mine.  There were two gates to go through to get the resort, nearly 1 .5-2 miles in from the main road. Once there, there was so much for the teens to do from activities nightly at the teen club, swimming, beach volleyball, pool games, Zumba, Aqua Kickboxing, non-motorized water sports, nightly shows, etc.  My 12-year old daughter was able to join her teenage brothers in the Teen Room (ages 13-17) by me making a copy of her passport and signing a permission form.  The kids (ages 12, 14, 16) were able to roam around the entire resort with ease and again, with a parental feeling of safety and security.

The rooms, grounds, pools, and beach were well maintained.  The view of the Caribbean Sea and multiple pools each day along with the 80+ degree tropical breeze was breathtaking and so welcomed after a long, Michigan winter.

One day we took an excursion, an hour and twenty-minute was drive by van, to Xel-Ha.  There, we all swam and snorkeled with dolphins, went tubing, cliff jumping, hiking, and zip lining into the water.  There were beautiful walkways with bars and a restaurant and other places to sit and rest by the beautiful blue-green water. Our kids loved this day!  It was a full 12 hour day (7 am to 7 pm) from the time we left our hotel to the time we returned, but it was well worth the extra excursion cost to go, at least with our ages of children.

My daughter and I had a beach massage one day.  If you show up to the spa early, you can sit in the steam room, sauna, and hot tub, which we did.  The most incredible massage ever was listening to the sounds of the waves crashing while the tropical breeze engulfed our cabana.  I would definitely recommend this for anyone that really wants to relax.

We loved hanging out by the various pools for all ages and moved to a different one each day.  The wait staff was great and very accommodating and we would recommend tipping $1.00 minimum for each visit they make with drinks.  Bring lots of $1s.  We had to get $1s at the front desk daily.

Overall, vacation far exceeded our expectations for this family of five!  We will be returning to Mexico in future years for our spring break adventures.

Thank you Nikki!

~The Flynn Family

A WONDERful Disney Experience

Thank you, Travel With Nikki for helping to plan a truly 'magical' vacation for our family!  We sailed on the Disney Wonder for four fantastic nights and spent two days in Disney World at Pop Century and Hollywood Studios.  It was my first time cruising, so Nikki really helped put all the pieces together while planning our trip.  From the transfer from the Orlando airport to the hotel, to Port Canaveral hotel recommendations, and which stateroom to choose on the ship, Nikki helped us make the right choices for our family.  Our kids fell in love with the wide array of entertainment on the ship, and we were amazed at the quality of the nightly shows.  The food on the boat was high quality and the service provided was even better!  Also, per Nikki's recommendation, my husband and kids were able to experience a dolphin encounter in Nassau in the Bahamas.  It was a once in a lifetime moment.  We ended our trip in Disney World.  My son has a true love of anything Star Wars and Hollywood Studios was certainly a slice of heaven for him.  Nikki, again, helped plan an efficient and productive day for us in the park.  We are already looking forward to our next family trip!  Thank you for helping make such wonderful memories!  

Kim F. February 2017 

Costa Rica- Dreams Las Mareas

Costa Rica was on our bucket list and Nikki made the trip everything we wanted it to be. Travel was incredibly smooth. We were so happy we that Nikki scheduled a private transfer from the airport with Catours. Our driver offered to stop along the way to the resort to grab our first vacation cocktail and when we wanted to see some of the Costa Rican wildlife.

We were looking for mostly relaxation and sun to escape the Minnesota winter with just a bit of adventure mixed in. We got just that with our canopy tour. The guides were fun, friendly and experienced which helped calm the nerves of my husband who is afraid of heights. We both had a great time! This tour was the best part of our trip! The resort was beautiful and the restaurant options provided great variety.

We very much appreciated Nikki's suggestions. I came into planning with a few resorts in mind, and she did a great job of making other suggestions based on service levels and amenities. We're so glad she did! Dreams Las Mareas was a great resort! A tip for future guests at the resort, like most All Inclusive resorts, you need to save your chairs at the pool fairly early in the morning 

Thank you, Nikki, for your thorough research, suggestions, and execution. You truly made our bucket list trip a success!"



Royalton Riviera Cancun

Nikki, thank you so much for helping us arrange our family vacation to the Royalton Riviera Cancun in Mexico! I think this was one of our favorite family vacations ever! We couldn't have found the perfect resort, and vacation package without you.

We had an AMAZING vacation. The weather was perfect and we loved the Royalton! Our girls loved the vacation as well!  

Best Day Travel were kind and helpful during our transfer to the resort, even if it was a little difficult to find their booth and communicate that we had arranged our transfer in advance.

The Royalton Resort far exceeded our expectations. The resort was beautiful. Our room wasn't ready at 3pm so they gave us an upgrade to a room with a rooftop jacuzzi. We did have some timeshare people hound us a bit when we were waiting to check in, but we followed your advice and once we said we weren't interested they left us alone. We figured out who the time share sellers were and avoided them the rest of the trip.

Our room was beautiful, very clean and the bed was so comfortable! The girls were on a pull out sofa that was small with very thin mattress. It worked fine for them, but anyone larger or older would likely not be comfortable on the pull out. We were on the 4th floor of building 9 and we had a view of ocean. It was a bit of a walk to other parts of the resort, but we didn't mind at all.

The food was fabulous!! The restaurants were all really good and the service was top notch! We figured out after the first night that it was best for us to eat at 6:00 when restaurants opened for dinner, because otherwise there would be long waits. The website says no reservation, but there were obviously "diamond" customers who had reservations. We are at the buffet for breakfast and it was HUGE and had so much food. I gained several pounds over these few days. The girls loved the Gelato machine in the coffee shop and ice cream in the buffet. 

The pools were all fabulous! Very well maintained. The had daily entertainment and music. The swim up bars were nice and kid friendly. They had a foam party that my girls absolutely loved. The wait staff around the pool was great and constantly bringing by bottled water and taking drink orders. We learned after first day that it was helpful to mark your spot at pool/beach early in the morning. The spots went quick. 

The beach was beautiful as well. It had wait staff, nice chairs and covered beds and pergolas that were nice. They dragged the beach with a tractor every morning to get rid of the seaweed that came up overnight. There was access to non motorized water sport activities. They did require $3/person fee for some marine fee- but they gave you a bracelet and it covered you for your entire stay. 

Lastly, the nightly entertainment was fabulous! The had a family friendly kid show at 8:00 and then another show (that was more grown up, but still family friendly) at 9:00. We saw great shows that were similar to shows we've seen from Cirque. We saw fire shows, Michael Jackson impersonation shows, drum shows. All were great! 

There was a kids club that we did not use. During the day they brought around unique people/animals that they would take your picture with (Aztec Indians, Parrots, huge birds). The girls loved holding the parrot and having him sit on their head. They had photographers around the resort that would take your pictures and then you could go to their store and purchase them.  

Thank you again for helping with this family vacation, the memories will be with us forever. 

London C.