Category: travel

Tourists are flooding to Portugal for the food and wine

According to Portugal’s National Institute of Statistics, 68 percent of American visitors traveling to Portugal include gastronomy and wine tastings in their plans, and their numbers are growing dramatically. In 2016, 390,000 Americans visited Portugal; last year, 685,000 did. Tourism officials expect 822,000 this year. TAP, Portugal’s national airline, now offers daily flights to Lisbon from JFK, and from Newark to Porto twice a week and Newark to Lisbon five days a week.

Enjoy the rest here.

Looks like Portugal is on the raise as a tourist and retirement destination.

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Veneto Region of Northern Italy: Tourist Map with Cities

The Veneto is a gem of a region in the northeast corner of Italy. Bound on the west by Lake Garda, on the north by the Dolomite Mountains and on the east by the Adriatic Sea, the landscape of the Veneto is rich and varied. From the grandeur of crumbly old Venice to the medieval flavor of Bassano del Grappa, and on to Belluno, a striking town that’s a gateway for visiting the Dolomites, the Veneto makes a fascinating region to explore.

I love Italy.

The rest here.

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Off the beaten track: 14 best kept travel secrets in Spain

Spain has so much to see off the beaten track so why not take the road less travelled and discover a few hidden gems?
Spain can boast a great deal of Unesco World Heritage sites, and several of them have recently made it onto Lonely Planet’s top 500 things to see in the world. But why take the road everybody else is taking when Spain has so many unsung beauties to offer? You’ve already seen the Alhambra and the Sagrada Familia – now it’s time to take your sightseeing to the next level.

The Burgos Cathedral looks amazing.

Read the rest here.

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Eleven Best Countries That Actually Love Having American Tourists

Been to Canada. Ireland, Australia, and Belize are on our bucket list.

One of the strangest sensations when traveling abroad as an American is the heightened sense of your American-ness. That I’m-from-anywhere accent you picked up from ’90s sitcoms becomes an invitation for people to guess where you’re from. Texas? California? When all else fails, and you don’t want to explain where Oklahoma City is, just claim to be from Miami, then watch your new friends’ eyes get wide. You, my friend, may just be from the Most Interesting Country in the World.

Point of fact, you don’t even need to be all that charming to be intriguing. We’re #blessed with a solid currency, a language that our colonial forebears took global, and a luminous pop culture that put Michael Jordan jerseys on kids in Buenos Aires and etched Michael Jackson jams into karaoke playlists in Seoul. Your American-ness precedes you, often for the better. So look past what you think the world thinks about the United States writ large. When you’re an American abroad, you’ll find warm welcomes many places — these countries perhaps most of all.

Read it all here.

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Iowa’s Historic Hotels

Historic Iowa Hotels.

This weekend we crossed two more off the list – Hotel Winneshiek and Hotel Julien. We stayed at the Historic Park Inn Hotel in Mason City a few years ago. So that makes three (four if they had included the Continental in Centerville). Some pictures of the Hotel Winneshiek below.

Looking down at the Hotel Winneshiek lobby.

Hotel Winneshiek in Decorah, Iowa

The stained glass ceiling at the Hotel Winneshiek.

Hotel Winneshiek in Decorah, Iowa stained glass

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The particular beauty of Naples, an incomplete list

A good article. Lots of pictures. Read the whole thing here.

I crave Naples the way I occasionally crave a very specific type of food: Intensely, completely, and then – in exactly the same way as when I allow myself to indulge in inadvisably large quantities of something like sushi or Indian food – not at all for a relatively significant length of time, until one day I wake up again and think: You know what I need? I need a pizza, eaten in the city where it was invented, and I need a dose of that in-your-face, brazen chaos that only Naples can properly deliver.

Naples, on the other hand, makes you work for its best bits. It doesn’t care if you love it or not, and so it holds its beauty close, tucking it away behind someone’s private gate or around a particularly grungy-looking corner, surprising you when you least expect it.

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Avoid Bringing Bed Bugs Home from Vacation

News you can use:

When you finally take a well-deserved trip, the last thing you want to concern yourself is bed bugs. But even the finest hotels can have them. The hitchhiking pests travel to new places by way of both humans and their belongings. When they find a new home, they look for places to hide, such as mattresses, headboards, couches and chairs …

Read more here.

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Total Solar Eclipse 2017: When, Where and How to See It (Safely)

On Aug. 21, 2017, people across the United States will see the sun disappear behind the moon, turning daylight into twilight, causing the temperature drop rapidly and revealing massive streamers of light streaking through the sky around the silhouette of the moon. On that day, America will fall under the path of a total solar eclipse.

The path of totality for the Aug. 21, 2017, total solar eclipse is about 70 miles wide and stretches from Oregon to South Carolina. It passes through Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

The jarWife and I are planning to be in Missouri for the show.

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