Travel


How to keep working out on vacation

Working out is a great habit that, once broken, can be hard to pick up again. But you can still fit it into your overseas tour or beach visit. “The priority is still the vacation. The question becomes how and what can we incorporate to stay active? If we’re at the beach, maybe we do some paddleboarding, beach jogging, bike rides,” says Victor Maldonado, a personal trainer in Washington...
Six U.S. budget vacation destinations offer bounty for the frugal

Six U.S. budget vacation destinations offer bounty for the frugal

Almost every travel authority worth its salt has published a list of budget destinations and in case you haven’t noticed, there’s not a lot of overlap among those lists. The reasons: Just about any destination could qualify as budget, depending on one’s tolerance for sleeping outdoors and eating straight from a can of beans, and travel authorities take great pains to avoid parroting...
24 hours in Oklahoma

24 hours in Oklahoma

It’s turning out to be a very Ford-driven trip, this foray into Oklahoma. Literally. Our Lyft driver picks us up at Devon Energy Tower in a Ford F-150, driving us to 21c Museum Hotel, which resides within a former Ford assembly plant that opened in 1916 to make Model T’s. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Why am I in Oklahoma? Don’t make that face, UT fans. My daughter is marrying...
Swim with the manatees – legally – in Florida’s Crystal River

Swim with the manatees – legally – in Florida’s Crystal River

On a recent trip with my in-laws, my husband and I decided to do something different, something that would capture the interest of my animal-obsessed sister-in-law. After searching for what seemed like hours on Groupon, we came upon Manatee Tour and Dive in Crystal River — about 87 miles northwest of Orlando, Fla. — which offers the chance to swim with manatees. Decision made. Groupon...
Go roaming in Chile, save money on a European hiking trip and more

Go roaming in Chile, save money on a European hiking trip and more

Long and skinny Chile is a country that calls out to adventurers. Stretching from the extremes of the Atacama Desert to the ruggedness of Patagonia, it’s a land of natural wonders. ROAM Adventures has four trips that explore various regions of this South American nation while allowing participants to experience a true multi-sport adventure. Chile has many wild rivers, and these trips dive in...

Put down that lamp! What you can - and can't - take from your hotel room.

When Lynn Culver stays at a hotel, she helps herself to the soaps and shampoos in her room. If housekeeping replaces the items, she takes the new ones, too.  Culver, a retired attorney from Lumberton, New Jersey, believes her room rate covers the amenities.   "But some of my fellow travelers consider this stealing," she says. "Can you please settle a dispute among friends?"...

Where to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner in Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee comes by the nickname Music City honestly, with the Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, all the honky-tonks lining the neon-illuminated Broadway downtown and myriad smaller venues throughout the city featuring country, bluegrass and indie rock. When you aren't listening to music, you can shop at any number of new or vintage guitar stores, or spend as much as you want on a pair of...

French company opens its first 'glampground' in the US

Early one morning last summer at a new Huttopia "glamping" property in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, I jumped up from my cushy mattress and could barely wait to step outside. There's nothing quite like the sun's insistent pink glow through the walls of a tent to nudge you out of bed at sunrise. Unless you're my teenage nephews, in which case there's nothing quite like sleeping until...
Lexington’s Distillery District gets a new lease on life

Lexington’s Distillery District gets a new lease on life

Approaching the Distillery District from downtown Lexington, Ky., motorists are taken aback by the large black-and-red mural depicting what looks to be — depending on your perspective — a demented scuba diver, a man wearing a gas mask, or more menacingly, a prison inmate flashing what may or may not be a gang symbol. Underneath are scrawled the words, “Caution. Do not feed.&rdquo...

Decoding your Airbnb: Adventures in voyeurism

He met me at the door holding a glass of wine. “Welcome,” he said. “You’re shorter than I thought you’d be.”  I didn’t understand how my height was relevant, but in truth, his appearance was not what I’d been expecting either. He bore a striking resemblance to Marlon Brando in “Apocalypse Now” — large, shiny bald head, and wearing...

What John Prine can’t travel without

Singer-songwriter John Prine has been playing his distinctive country-folk music on the road for nearly 50 years.  He is currently touring in support of his newest album, “The Tree of Forgiveness.”  Prine and his wife, Fiona, are based in Nashville, Tennessee, but they spend much of the year in St. Petersburg, Florida, where they do very little.  “Fiona is a beach...

Trekking through fire and ice on Greenland's 102-mile Arctic Circle Trail

Late on my fourth day hiking the 102-mile Arctic Circle Trail in western Greenland, I encountered smoke rising from the ground. White tendrils, sometimes columns, rose in all directions from charred soil and wisped out from an 800-foot-tall hummocky, granitic hillside to my left. To my right was the 14-mile-long, string-bean-shaped Lake Amitsorsuaq, the biggest of the dozens of lakes we had hiked...

A bakery by the beach signals a new dawn for San Diego pastries

SAN DIEGO — Destination bread and pastries have been surprisingly elusive in San Diego, a city with access to superb ingredients and international influences that are not beholden to rigid baking traditions. Now there is a destination, thanks to Crystal White and her new bakery, where a mural depicts the sunrise over a wheat field, signaling a new dawn for San Diego baking.  That should...

New Southwest Airlines emotional support animal policy allows only dogs and cats on leashes or in carriers

Joining several other carriers that have adopted tough new rules on pets, Southwest Airlines is adopting a new policy for emotional support animals in the cabin, allowing only dogs and cats that are restrained by a leash or kept in a carrier.  The new policy, announced Tuesday by the Dallas-based carrier, also limits each passenger to one emotional support animal. As for service animals that...
6 safety tips for a solo road trip

6 safety tips for a solo road trip

Hitting the road on your own can be an incredibly liberating experience. With no fights over the radio dial, you can sing loudly and shamelessly to your “Britney’s Back” playlist. You call all the shots and all the stops. Yep, even if you want to stop at that Bigfoot-themed roadside coffee stand. And with these safety tips, you can ensure your trip doesn’t go from inspirational...
Choose Montreal if you’re looking for an arty, historical adventure

Choose Montreal if you’re looking for an arty, historical adventure

MONTREAL — In recent years, I have made it something of a habit to celebrate my birthday in some far-flung corner of the world. I’ve gotten a year older in Munich, Germany; Lausanne, Switzerland; New Zealand and Hong Kong among other places. This May 15 found me in Montreal. As birthdays go, it wasn’t one of my best, weather-wise. Steel-gray skies opened up to release fat droplets...

Talk Travel: Where to take an extended stopover enroute to Bali

The Washington Post's Travel section writers and editors recently discussed stories, questions, gripes and more. Here are edited excerpts:  Q: I am planning a trip to Bali in April. What city would be the best for an extended stopover?   A: I would recommend Hong Kong or Seoul. Some airlines offer free layovers (sometimes with hotel included), so check with the airline before you book...
Hunting for nature in an urban setting

Hunting for nature in an urban setting

Public parks aside, getting a dose of nature can be a tricky task during an urban escape. But nature should and can fit into that city getaway, according to Kally Ellis, the founder of the London florist company McQueens and the in-house florist for the Maybourne Hotel Group. “Connecting with the natural world wherever you are is a great antidote to jet lag and travel tiredness,” she said...

Devastating toxic algae bloom plagues Florida's Gulf Coast

LONGBOAT KEY, Fla. (AP) — Tons of dead fish. A smell so awful you gag with one inhale. Empty beaches, empty roads, empty restaurants.  A toxic algae bloom has overrun Florida's southern Gulf Coast this summer, devastating sea life and driving people from the water.   "I've never seen it this bad," said 31-year-old Heather Lamb of Venice. She's a hairdresser and makeup...

TSA tests scanners that allow travelers to keep electronics and liquids in their bags when going through airport security

For what feels like eons, Transportation Security Administration officers have been reminding travelers to remove all electronics and liquids from their carry-on bags and place them in a tray. At more than a dozen airports, however, passengers are hearing a new refrain: Keep your items in your luggage.  This summer, the agency is amping up its pilot test of new CT scanners (in longhand, computed...

A low-key Mediterranean escape

Hotel Les Roches Rouges, St.-Raphael, France  90 Boulevard de la 36e Division du Texas; hotellesrochesrouges.com/en  Rates  Rooms start at 395 euros (about $462) during high season (July, August and September) and 280 euros other months.  A dreamed-of experience of the French Riviera is to find one of those secret and stunningly beautiful coves and beaches that miraculously survive...

Ryanair strike pushes panicky customers into pricey bookings

Ryanair Holdings' worsening spat with pilots and cabin crew has created confusion among panicked customers as they race to salvage travel plans disrupted by strikes.  Travelers holding tickets from affected airports told of an online race to find alternative journeys with the Irish airline or switch to rival carriers, only to see prices spiraling higher as hundreds of others chased the same seats...

As children head back to school, getaway for grown-ups

Adults-only vacations for parents appear to be growing in popularity. Expedia recently reported that social media posts about child-free trips doubled in the past year. Travel Leaders Group, which represents 50,000 travel agents in North America, reports an upsurge in adults-only travel — in particular romantic trips, getaways with friends and parents traveling with adult children. Sales of...

Hurricane-damaged Hawks Cay Resort reopening Aug. 30 after $50 million renovation

Hawks Cay Resort in the Florida Keys is scheduled to reopen Aug. 30.  The resort, at Mile Marker 61 in the Middle Keys, was damaged in Hurricane Irma hit last September. The $50 million renovation includes the lobby on the main hotel, 177 guest rooms and public areas.   “We’re bringing back what guests loved about Hawks Cay with a fresh design in the main hotel and new experiences...

Universal opens Boutique with Marvel merchandise

Universal Orlando is offering another way to buy Marvel merchandise with a store called, simply enough, Boutique. It’s in the Marvel Super Hero Island at Islands of Adventure theme park.  Boutique carries Marvel-inspired goods, including comic-styled dresses, bedazzled handbags (plus one that looks very Iron Mannish), backpacks shaped like the Deadpool logo, jewelry, totes, tennis shoes...
Blithe tone belied desperate actions of Seattle plane thief

Blithe tone belied desperate actions of Seattle plane thief

SEATTLE (AP) — He cracked jokes, complimented the professional demeanor of an air traffic controller and apologized for making a fuss.  But the friendly tone of a 29-year-old airport worker who stole a commercial plane Friday night, performing acrobatic stunts before the fatal plunge into a thick island forest, belied his desperate actions.   "I think I'm going to try to...

Travel dilemmas: Calling customer service?

Loretta Gromo wanted to do something special to celebrate her wedding anniversary, so she decided to book a Royal Caribbean cruise to mark 25 years of marriage to her husband, Bob.  After 34 years as an elementary school teacher, she was experienced in handling a range of behaviors, including a lack of cooperation. In the classroom, that might be expected; after all, she taught second-graders...

Traveling alone helped me confront my fear of being by myself

After being laid off this past December, I booked a two-week trip to Paris. I already lived alone, went to dinner alone, sat in coffee shops alone and danced at weddings alone. But I had never traveled alone. It seemed like the final frontier of my life as a single woman.  When I booked the trip, I imagined all the things I would do by myself in Paris. I would walk along the Seine. I would spend...

Travel deals: Free hotel night in Cabo and $402 fare to Dublin

This week's best travel bargains around the globe.  Earn a free third night - plus a spa credit - at Hacienda Beach Club & Residences, a 22-acre beachfront resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The "Buy Two Nights, Get One Free" rate starts at $1,050 for three nights, plus 19 percent tax, and includes a $100 spa credit. Travel through Oct. 31. Info: 866-300-0084, haciendacaboresort.com...

Family travel five: Buffalo billed at these venues

At the turn of the century, America’s wild bison — which at one time numbered 60 million — had dwindled to about two dozen animals. Strong, sturdy and resilient, they’ve made a comeback, thanks to public and private conservation efforts.  On the range, in refuges and national parks, this symbol of our wildlife heritage is magnificent to observe.   Here are five...

Los Cabos is a model for sustainability

Long a favored Mexican visitor destination, Los Cabos is as popular for its plethora of visitor activities as it for its proximity to the United States.  Less than a three-hour plane ride from most of Texas and California, Los Cabos can also be reached in just about five hours for New Yorkers. Moreover, the destination welcomes 500 flights weekly from 40 cities in the United States and Canada...

Trying on a farmhouse in Northern Italy for size

Framed by a mountainous horizon, the farm fields are littered with hay bales, both round and rectangular, and I'm reminded of the Virginia Piedmont, where I grew up. Such a gentle, pastoral landscape seems imprinted in my spiritual DNA, and is the real reason I've journeyed here, to Northern Italy's Piemonte region: to discover whether the two places have more than similar names in common.  The...

San Jose airport shows off facial recognition for international flights

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Mineta San Jose International Airport demonstrated a facial recognition system that will make it the first West Coast airport to launch, for all international flights, a technology that officials said has already slashed the processing time for travelers.  Facial recognition uses a digital image or a video capture to verify or identify a person. The airport launched the...

Hiking near wildfire zones? What to know before dashing up that trail

Dana Hendricks had a front-row seat when 176 hikers got stranded by fast-moving wildfires last year in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge.  The veteran trail manager who lives just upriver from where it happened said the harrowing episode underscores why those heading into wilderness need to be prepared for a fire. Although all the hikers eventually were rescued, most had to spend a night on...

Want to stay healthy while flying? Follow this advice from an aviation doctor.

Quay Snyder flies more than 130 times a year on commercial flights. As an aerospace medicine specialist, pilot and flight instructor, he feels perfectly safe in the air. But after each flight, to put his wife's mind at ease, he'll call her to say he has arrived without incident. "I joke with my wife," he says. "I give her a call and I say: 'I'm starting the most dangerous part of my...

A sleek San Diego hotel with a focus on food

The Pendry San Diego occupies half a city block that was cleared to make way for a Marriott hotel that never materialized. The 317-room hotel, opened in February 2017, was the first in Montage International’s new hospitality brand.   With the Pendry, the group hopes to attract younger luxury guests than its Montage Hotels & Resorts. As much a destination for drinking and dining as...

Flight trying to leave D.C. delayed - by 1,400 pounds of paperwork

WASHINGTON - There are days when paperwork weighs you down -- and there are days when you are weighed down by so much paperwork your flight can't take off.  Monday, Aug. 6, was such a day, when American Airlines Flight 163 bound for Los Angeles found itself literally grounded by 1,400 pounds of what the pilot termed "government documents." The excess weight had to be unloaded before...

The joy of traveling alone: A New York Times travel writer describes why she loves exploring solo

As a travel writer for the New York Times, Stephanie Rosenbloom has scored many plum assignments. One of them - spending five days in Paris, on her own - stayed with her long after she returned. To find out why her senses pricked up there - and why she was able to delight in the smallest things there - she returned to Paris and also traveled solo to Istanbul and Florence. Back in New York City, she...

The guide to responsible camping in Colorado

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Camping in Colorado is a blast. It’s the best way to get up-close to the wild environment that makes the Centennial State so special. That being said, following best practices of camping responsibly is key to having an experience that’s both enjoyable and safe for often fragile environments. Here are a few guidelines to make sure that you’re camping...

Visiting Jack Daniel’s, and other kindred spirits

While restoring the 1887-vintage Old Taylor Distillery in Frankfort, Kentucky, Will Arvin and Wes Murry, partners in the business, discovered abandoned train tracks on the property and a passenger depot once used by visitors arriving to tour the bourbon works. When it reopens in the fall, after a 40-year hiatus, as Castle & Key Distillery, the gin and bourbon brand will use the restored Taylorton...
Flight trying to leave D.C. delayed - by 1,400 pounds of paperwork

Flight trying to leave D.C. delayed - by 1,400 pounds of paperwork

WASHINGTON - There are days when paperwork weighs you down -- and there are days when you are weighed down by so much paperwork your flight can't take off.  » RELATED: NASA flight to sun delayed 24 hours Monday, Aug. 6, was such a day, when American Airlines Flight 163 bound for Los Angeles found itself literally grounded by 1,400 pounds of what the pilot termed "government documents...
Nantucket’s small size belies boundless history, appeal

Nantucket’s small size belies boundless history, appeal

The Grey Lady is gorgeous. Just the profusion of giant rhododendron and wild roses cascading over the sand dunes is worth the cost of the hourlong ferry ride south from Cape Cod. But there is so much more to see and learn about on the island of Nantucket, a National Historic Landmark. Its diminutive size (47.8 square miles, in what Herman Melville described as a “small elbow of sand”)...
Play for the day in Portland

Play for the day in Portland

An Austinite doesn’t have to stay long to feel right at home in Portland. From the cities’ mutual love for live music, bicycles and craft beer to a shared affinity for keeping things “weird” and a foodie culture that embraces culinary innovation in everything from chef-driven restaurants to doughnut shops and food trucks and carts, similarities between these unofficial sister...
Exploring Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory

Exploring Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory

On the wild and rushing Clackamas River that winds through Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory, our screams are drowned out by the roar of the rapids. Our black inflatable raft surges forward atop raging whitewater as bone-chilling waves soak our bodies and steal our breath. During this half-day rafting trip with Blue Sky Rafting (blueskyrafting.com), our emotions are a mix of sheer thrill punctuated...

Warrantless device searches at the border are rising. Privacy advocates are suing.

If you're traveling abroad this month, be careful what devices you bring across the U.S. border.  Customs and Border Protection searches of cellphones, laptops and other electronic devices have spiked dramatically over the past two years, and they're expected to rise in the August vacation season.   Privacy advocates worry that these searches, if conducted without a warrant or suspicion...
Universal Orlando hints at name of 4th theme park

Universal Orlando hints at name of 4th theme park

ORLANDO, Fla. — Comcast executives in July gave a glimpse of how much they hope to amp up a war with Walt Disney World as they hinted at a possible name for a fourth theme park they believe would make Universal Orlando Resort destination for a week-long stay. In a question-and-answer session July 26, an analyst inquired about a patent application filed last month for the name “Fantastic...
Celebrity Cruises revamps fleet while moving forward on Celebrity Apex

Celebrity Cruises revamps fleet while moving forward on Celebrity Apex

Celebrity Cruises is set to debut its first new ship in more than a decade when Celebrity Edge makes its way to Florida this fall, but the cruise line isn’t slowing down after that. This summer, the second of four Edge-class ships, Celebrity Apex, moved forward with a steel-cutting ceremony at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in St. Nazaire, France. And Celebrity announced it was...
Dallas somehow named the sweatiest city in Texas; Houston baffled as Austin comes in second

Dallas somehow named the sweatiest city in Texas; Houston baffled as Austin comes in second

  We all know the stereotypes: Houston is hot and humid, Austin is hot yet hipster and Dallas is absolutely a city in Texas (with a famous football team and some terrific art museums). We know these truths to be self-evident, right? According to the fine people at Dallas News, a researcher working with Honeywell Fans ranked 50 U.S. cities “according to their sweatiness factor.” Ted...

Don't make these car-rental mistakes on your next vacation

Before you click the "book" button on your next car rental, consider what happened to Elizabeth Thorp on a recent trip from her home in Washington to Denver.  When Thorp's airline canceled her flight, delaying her arrival by a day, Avis charged her a $150 cancellation fee for her rental car.   "A representative said, 'Sorry, you had a prepaid rate,' " says Thorp...

At this supermarket pop-up, everything is made of felt. Really

LOS ANGELES — It’s tempting to turn “The Sparrow Mart,” British artist Lucy Sparrow’s latest exhibition, featuring more than 31,000 felted creations made to look like everyday supermarket items, into a commentary on American consumerism.  But for the 32-year-old Sparrow, the interactive installation, currently on view at the Standard Hotel in downtown L.A., is merely...

In Guatemala City, a temple to the tostada

Written in big white chalk letters on the door of Dora La Tostadora are the words “No hay caviar, pero hay maíz.” There’s not caviar, but there’s corn.  That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows the place. The restaurant — a few blocks from the heart of Cuatro Grados Norte, or Zona 4, Guatemala City’s bustling cultural and gastronomic...
Florida’s scallop season is an underwater Easter egg hunt

Florida’s scallop season is an underwater Easter egg hunt

ORLANDO, Fla. — It’s scallop season in Florida, which means hundreds of scallopers converge on Homosassa Bay in search of the edible mollusk. Early on a bright and sunny Saturday morning, my family set out for the Gulf of Mexico in search of the Florida Bay scallop. There were six in our hunting party; four were novice scallopers. We were armed with snorkel masks, swim fins, scalloping...
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