WHOA Travel founders Allison Fleece and Danielle Thornton on Mount Kilimanjaro. All photos courtesy of WHOA
No one climbs Mount Kilimanjaro alone, and no one knows that better than the founders of WHOA Travel. Women High on Adventure creators Allison Fleece and Danielle Thornton are travel-loving friends who met while climbing Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest peak, in February 2013. Tackling one of the world’s toughest summits together was so life-altering, they knew they wanted to share the experience with others. So upon returning to New York, they quit their jobs and started an adventure travel company with a mission to motivate women to step out of their comfort zones … and onto the tallest freestanding mountain in the world.
In the spirit of empowering women, WHOA Travel led a group of 28 women from 9 countries to the roof of Africa on International Women’s Day earlier this year. Not only did all 28 women make it to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, but they even danced their way to the summit. Led by the mountain’s first local female guide, the group raised more than $10,000 to support women’s educational programs in Kenya and Tanzania. Now, Allison and Danielle are gearing up to lead another group of women to the summit on International Women’s Day in 2015.
We caught up with daring adventuresses between climbing mountains to find out what other WHOA-inspiring trips they’re leading, how their high-altitude dance-party tradition began, and the surprising item they never head back to Mount Kilimanjaro without (hint: it’s not a power bar).
The biggest travel day of the year just got a bit more stressful, thanks to the winter nor’easter in the forecast. It’s inevitable that the day before Thanksgiving will include record-long lines at the airport and headache-inducing traffic — and now, add likely hazardous roads and delayed flights.
Take a deep breath and keep these tips in mind to avoid a holiday travel meltdown.
Take advantage of an airline weather waiver.
With winter weather in the forecast for Wednesday, big airlines such as American Airlines, Delta and United are waiving change fees and relaxing their rebooking rules, even allowing fare differences to be waived. Look carefully at the rules; most include the note that rescheduled travel has to start by Friday.
Reese Witherspoon stars in film adaption of Cheryl Strayed’s ‘Wild’ memoir. Fox Searchlight
Don’t walk alone. It’s a familiar warning for all travelers heading into dangerous, crime-ravaged countries — and for female travelers when they go … well, anywhere after sundown. Cheryl Strayed makes a daring move by walking alone somewhere dark, terrifying and ultimately unknown: the wilderness.
From the Mojave Desert, through California and Oregon, all the way up to the Bridge of the Gods in Washington state — a full 1,100 miles — Strayed hikes solo in her best-selling, Oprah-approved memoir, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail. And now, only 2 years after the book was published and then translated into 30 different languages, her words come to life on the big screen in the highly anticipated film Wild. Academy Award winner Reese Witherspoon loved the story so much that she not only signed on to play Strayed, but she also is a co-producer after optioning the film even before the book’s release.
Hollywood stars aren’t the only ones attempting to re-create her journey; throngs of fans inspired by Strayed’s story are hitting the Pacific Crest Trail, one of the country’s longest and wildest thru-hikes, in record numbers. The Pacific Crest Trail Association is embracing the growing interest — about a 30% increase in the number of hikers this year alone — by sharing Strayed’s exact route and inspiring Wild stories.
Jay Fielden in his office at Town & Country Travel. Photo by Patrick McMullan.
He’s on a mission to bring back the intoxication and seduction of travel one story at a time. Jay Fielden, editor-in-chief of the newly resurrected Town & Country Travel, is more than ready for his big job of reinventing what a travel magazine can be — a portal that transports you to another world. While Town & Country might be known for catering to the well-heeled and glamorous — and its Travel extension doesn’t shy away from exclusive insider places, either — the innate curiosity of every traveler at heart will be intrigued by the stories behind those faraway, exotic destinations and people.
So if you can’t jet to Venice for a martini at Harry’s Bar, Fielden wants to make sure you’re still enraptured in the geopolitics of the martini arriving in Italy. (And who says you can’t drink a martini as you read the story on your couch?)
We caught up with the busy editor find out how his small-town San Antonio roots prepared him for New York’s glamorous magazine world, the one item he can’t imagine traveling without, and the café in Paris that may have just turned his 8-year-old daughter into a young Francophile. READ MORE
Whether you’re going the distance for the world’s largest marathon or cheering on a friend from the sidelines, here are hotels offering packages for the TCS New York City Marathon, which are filled with pre- and post-race pampering. Running a whopping 26.2 miles — you deserve it.
Courtesy of the Pierre Hotel
Mickela dances with women celebrating at the Asrlar Sadosi Festival in Navoi, Uzbekistan.
Whose dream isn’t to dance around the world? Mickela Mallozzi, host and creator of the travel TV series Bare Feet, ”experiences the world one dance at time,” and boy, are we jealous. From reconnecting with her family’s roots while folk dancing in Italy to sweating it out with locals dancing salsa in Puerto Rico, Mickela discovers how different cultures express themselves without words.
A classically trained dancer, Mickela has performed on various other TV shows, including Sesame Street, the Today show and The Dr. Oz show, and she is the co-director of the Women’s Travel Fest, an annual conference for inspiring and connecting women through travel.
We caught up with Mickela — between her Riverdancing in Ireland and getting intimate with Argentines over tango — to chat about the intersection of travel, dance and culture.
Find out how Mickela got hooked on dancing around the world, how dance enthusiasts (read: amateur dancers) can join her as she moves around the globe, and what country she thinks has the best dancers. (Hint: It’s not the US.)
To the shock and dismay of women around the world, the world’s most eligible bachelor is officially off the market. George Clooney tied the knot with Amal Alamuddin on Sept. 27 in Venice, Italy, at Hotel Aman, a historic hotel on Venice’s iconic Canal Grande.
This 16th-century palazzo, which was built on water, housed Venice’s elite for centuries, so it was a fitting spot for the Oscar-winning actor and the internationally acclaimed barrister to wed. Renovated into a luxury resort in 2013, Hotel Aman blends the old world with the new — frescoes hang in some of the 24 guest rooms, but there’s also a spa and fitness area. Don’t get too excited about following in Clooney’s footsteps: A night here will cost you — prices start at about $1,000 a night for a standard room. Most star-worthy wedding moment? The glamorous couple and their A-list guests arrived via boat or gondola.
After a dream wedding in Venice, where does a Hollywood power couple such as Clooney and Alamuddin honeymoon? Far-flung exotic locales like the beaches in Mauritius or the Maldives? Or perhaps, as was speculated, at royal honeymoon hot spot Seychelles?
Whether you’re in the mood for leaf peeping or you’re planning your next international getaway, you’ll want to check out Travel’s Best Road Trips 2014. Our coveted list includes the most picturesque and adventurous drives across the globe, from off-roading on the salt flats in Bolivia to an unexpected fall-foliage-inspired drive on the “Going to the Sun Road” in Glacier National Park.
Our panel of road-trip experts — including off-road explorer and host Don Wildman, Roadtrippers.com founder and CEO James Fisher, and cinematographer and road-tripper Allison Otto — not only shared their recommendations for the best drives in the world, but they also shared with us their favorite road-trip songs. If you thought Don listens to classic rock cruising on his Harley, you’re right! No matter where your travels take you, here’s our road trippin’ playlist to set the mood.
Fall is officially here, and we couldn’t be happier to start enjoying a few of our favorite things: sweater weather, heart-thumping adventures and pumpkin-flavored food galore.
There’s no shortage of things to do in fall, but we whittled down our list to 6 of our favorite seasonal musts. There are only 90 days in fall, so get crackin’.
Photo courtesy of Baron Baptiste
In honor of National Yoga Month, we caught up with one of leading men in the yoga world, a man who has transformed the face of modern yoga in America — Baron Baptiste. A global force on the scene for the past 2 decades, Baptiste is a yoga teacher, trainer, best-selling author and speaker. He was destined to be a yoga pioneer: His parents opened the first yoga studio in San Francisco in 1955, and he started practicing yoga at the ripe age of 12.
Founder of the Baptiste Power Yoga Institute and creator of Baptiste Yoga, he has built his own brand of power yoga — a vigorous style of yoga seeking to transform the mind as well as the body — that’s one of the most popular practices in America. From teaching war veterans to the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles, Baptiste strives to make yoga accessible and empowering to all, without new-agey mysticism.
Find out how the busy but serene yogi became a yoga icon, how he takes his practice on the road and what he’d be doing if he weren’t a yoga teacher. Hint: It’s still just as Zen.