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From time to time, we all want a little bit of pampering in our lives; and sometimes we want a lot. Fortunately, for those with the time and money, vacation spots and tours exist for no purpose but to fulfill our every wish-giving us beautiful places to be and luxurious accommodations while we are there. There are island getaways, river cruises, palace hotels and more. If you know where to look and what you want, the vacation of your dreams is just waiting to ease the relaxation back into your body.

Many people consider St. Thomas, in the Virgin Islands, to be one of the most idyllic islands in the world and their opinions are mirrored by National Geographic magazine, which declared St. Thomas' Megan Bay to be one of the world's ten most beautiful beaches. And just a short walk away is Villa Papillon, a vacation home available for rent, which includes a pool, Jacuzzi, spacious gourmet kitchen and more-all enclosed within dramatic ocean views. On St. Thomas, a visitor can scuba dive, dance, kayak, hike, travel in submarines, and more. Without doubt, Villa Papillon is a vacation well worth taking.

If you're more the continental type, perhaps a river cruise through Europe would be to your liking. The luxurious river barge Etoile de Champagne offers gourmet meals (prepared with fresh foods from local markets), various itineraries, and the finest in floating accommodations. Voted "Best European Canal Barge" by Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report, the Etoile de Champagne runs during the spring, summer, and early fall. Thanks to a passenger limit of twelve, the master chef on the Etoile has time to prepare the finest foods for the ship's guests. With visits to local towns and a dance floor, in addition to the beautiful and spacious rooms on the barge, there can be as much peace or as much activity as a voyager could want. For group vacations, the entire ship can be rented.

For those who want to experience Europe's higher life, but don't feel like floating along a river, Paris's world famous Ritz hotel has every luxury that a hotel can offer. Overlooking the Place Vendome (between the Rue de la Paix and the Jardin de Tuleries), the Ritz is perfectly situated in the center of Paris with easy access to all of the city's most famous sites. The hotel, itself, is world famous for its state of the art renovations combined with old world tradition. With a discotheque, fitness center and more, the Ritz clearly pulls out all of the stops for anyone who wishes to stay in its sumptuous rooms, whether on business or pure pleasure.

But Europe and the islands aren't the only places to enjoy beautiful vacations. For an hotel stay that equals the Ritz in splendor, The Oriental, in Bangkok, Thailand, has a reputation that cannot be beaten. Along the Chao Phya river ('River of King'), it offers colonial pomp and style in an Eastern setting. From a business center to a ballroom, The Oriental has all of the bells and whistles and has played host to some of the most famous men and women of the past century, including the writers Joseph Conrad and Somerset Maugham.

But don't let this short list dissuade you from visiting other cities in other countries. There are beautiful hotels, resorts, islands, cruises and more for you to experience-all within the lap of luxury and at little personal effort.