Sara Gilliam

Sara is a Senior Producer for Travel Channel.com. She has eaten her way through Thailand, sailed around the coast of Greece -- and thought she died and went to heaven in Paris (not literally). In addition to travel, she loves smart design, clever headlines and all things pop culture.

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  • Menorca, Spain.
  • Paros, Greece
  • Las Lajas Sanctuary,

Posts by Sara Gilliam

Kinga Philipps films in a swimming hole on Oahu

Courtesy of Kinga Philipps

TravelChannel.com Originals host Kinga Philipps is no stranger to Oahu, but for The Trip 2015 she really pushed her limits, both by free diving and spear fishing in the ocean and strapping on a parachute to do 360-degree loops in a glider. Her Hawaiian adventures will be captured in a 5-part web series.

What brought you to Oahu?

I’ve been to Oahu dozens of times, but it’s never the same experience twice, so I keep coming back. It’s relaxing, wild, peaceful, exhilarating — all rolled into one. This time, we came for Travel Channel’s yearly special The Trip to show off some adventures one can have on the island. We teamed up with locals to show us their idea of a good time, from spear-fishing to private hikes to glider rides and, of course, local grindz.

What were your expectations while filming/visiting Oahu?

I’ve learned to leave expectations behind when I travel — even to places I’ve been before. I did expect to have a lot of fun and eat a lot of good food, and that definitely transpired. It’s also a fact that people who are very good at a sport make it look easy, so I knew the spear-fishing and free-diving segment would exceed my level of experience, and I would have to push myself. I’m comfortable in the water and I’ve dabbled in free diving, but when Shaun Harada, my guide, said, “Make sure you take the snorkel out of your mouth when you dive deep, because if you black out, it acts as a funnel for the water into your lungs,” I knew I was in a bit over my head (pun intended). I don’t want to spoil the ending, but clearly I made it, or I wouldn’t be writing this — although I still can’t hear out of my left ear. Totally worth it.

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This Week in Travel: Antarctica

Photography by Paul Souders | WorldFoto

Whether you’ve resolved to be more present in your everyday travels or take more risks in a far-flung adventure, this week’s travel blog roundup has both in spades.

The Red Bull Air Force is world-renowned for its amazing stunts. Head over to Adventure.com to see a pretty spectacular highlight reel, including a wingsuit jump over downtown New York and BASE jumping off Fisher Towers in Moab, UT.

We get it — it’s hard to motivate yourself to get out of bed in the morning during the winter months. But this Brooklyn Bridge sunrise series from C’est Christine might do the trick.

Lee Abbamonte has ventured where, we daresay, few of us ever will: the South Pole. Check out his real-life march of the (emperor) penguins in Antarctica.

Live vicariously through Candice Does the World, who stumbled upon an “ultra-secret” geothermal pool while on a road trip in Iceland.

If the Oscar buzz around Wild has you contemplating hiking for days on end, follow the Fearful Adventurer’s own unexpected and inspiring pilgrimage.

The Trip 2015: Hawaii
Travel Channel’s third annual $100,000 dream getaway will be to Hawaii, a destination unrivaled in natural wonders, foodie experiences and aloha spirit. Travel Channel stars Bert Kreischer, Don Wildman, Sam Brown and Anthony Melchiorri will uncover the ultimate insider experiences on the Hawaiian Islands, from a private helicopter tour of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park to VIP dining at Alan Wong’s.

Be among the first to enter for a chance to win The Trip 2015 now and tune in on Monday, Jan. 26, at 8|7c to see the full prize package unveiled in a 1-hour special.

Enter for a chance to win The Trip 2015!

More About The Trip 2015
Meet the Hosts
Hawaii Travel Guide
Which Hawaiian Island Are You?

Miami
All eyes on the year ahead. Where will 2015 take you? Let this week’s travel blog roundup inspire your next adventure.

No surprise here. Sunny Miami tops Flipkey’s list of the 10 most desirable vacation rental destinations.

Fathom rounded up 9 boutique hotels that will blow up your Instagram feed in 2015.

The one place to visit in 2015? Skift throws an unlikely destination in the mix.

For a much needed digital detox, Afar recommends 20 off-the-grid getaways.

JohnnyJet has unearthed 6 iconic winter treats in Minneapolis.

This Week in Travel
Whether you’re spending the holidays with loved ones or spending your vacation days traveling the world, we wish you and yours a happy new year.

It’s safe to say Fly Etihad’s 3-room residence suite on its new A380 puts your holiday commute to shame. Go inside with Skift.

Can’t get enough family time? Take it on the road. Head over to Fathom for 16 #HappyFamily travel pics to serve as inspiration.

British Airways delighted children of all ages by revealing Santa’s 317-million mile journey, check out the official flight plan on JohnnyJet.

Swap your Christmas list for your travel bucket list. On ours? Driving Iceland’s Golden Circle like ExpertVagabond.

Planes, trains and automobiles — Refinery29 has you covered with 4 cute and cozy winter travel outfits.

This Week in Travel
It’s the most wonderful time of the year … the time to holiday in ski villages or far-flung islands, to reflect on the year’s best travel moments and to plan your adventures in 2015.

Colorado native A Week at the Beach, shares everything you need to know to plan a dream getaway to her home state. In addition to what to see and do, she also shares 9 tried-and-true tips to make it a stress-free family vacation.

Not dreaming of a white Christmas? Head on over to Miss Vacation for her tips on spending the holidays half a world away and stay tuned for the beautiful photos of Hawaii and French Polynesia that are sure to follow.

It’s almost time for New Years resolutions, but we’re guessing you already know whether you plan to go to the gym more or try something new — same thing as last year, right? Intrepid Travel reveals the No. 1 destination to carry out all of your resolutions in 2015.

Travel and Leisure reveals 6 things we all love about Kimpton’s boutique hotels. Now that they’ve been purchased for $430 million (in cash), we hope new owner Intercontinental Hotels Group doesn’t mess with Kimpton’s karma.

We’ll leave you with some truly amazing travel inspiration in the form of all of the best viral videos of 2014 in under 7 minutes.

This Week in Travel

From deep Americana to new travel trends, this week’s travel blog roundup is full of surprises.

They say everything’s bigger in Texas, but that doesn’t include your carry on. The Tig has the ultimate Dallas packing guide for urban cowgirls.

Which states search for travel the most on Google? Skift breaks down the data and the answer may surprise you.

Scenic river cruises may be all the rage, but this BBC video via JohnnyJet reveals a bit more unique alternative: cargo cruises.

For anyone who’s romanticized their days at summer camp, revel in these photos of a beautiful fall retreat at Camp Wandawega by none other than the folks at Kinfolk.

Wait, your Instagram feed isn’t a glorious passport for armchair traveling like ours? Lucky for you, Afar has rounded up some of the most Instagram-worthy spots in the world.


The holiday season is in full swing, whether you’re looking for last-minute travel tips or destination inspiration our weekly travel blog roundup has you covered.

Explore London in a novel way by tasting your way around the city. A Luxury Travel Blog highlights 6 delicious tours that are perfect for the cold winter months.

The holiday season is the busiest time to travel, so take advantage of Triphackr’s helpful tips to save cash on last-minute plans.

Adventure Journal shares adventures and photos from Gunther Holtorf, who traveled 550,000 miles over 26 years in his 1988 Mercedes Benz G-Wagen named “Otto.”

Have you ever thought about getting a tattoo? How about one that’s engraved by hand using a long metal spike or sharpened bamboo? Read about Expert Vagabond’s experience getting a traditional Sak Yant tattoo from a famous Buddhist monk in Thailand.

Check out these small treasures from around the globe, courtesy of Fathom.

Iceland

While we all crave to be home for the holidays, sometimes the turkey, stuffing and personal questions from your relatives are all it takes to reignite your wanderlust. This week’s travel blog roundup is here to help.

Unsurprisingly, Iceland is becoming a hot spot for US visitors, but according to Skift, so are more offbeat European countries, such as Romania, Lithuania and Croatia.

Whether you endured bumper-to-bumper traffic or a delayed flight, bad weather can put a damper on holiday travel. The team at Fathom reminds us of the bright spot to bad weather with these beautiful photos.

JohnnyJet shares 31 reasons to stay at Turtle Bay Resort in Oahu, HI — as if you needed more than 1.

For more travel-writing escapism, enjoy Nowhere’s beautiful essay “3 Wishes in Armenia.”

A photographer caught the sunset in every time zone in a single day. Thanks to Doubletakes for digging this video up.

Grand Canyon

A Route 66 road trip wouldn’t be complete without a stop to see the Grand Canyon.

This week, our favorite travel blogs are serving up touristy attractions and experiences that are worth a second look.

If you think reading 1 piece about Route 66 is enough, you’re wrong. Rediscover the allure of the “road of flight” through the eyes of Boat Magazine’s editor.

Touristy places get a bad rap, but Landlopers explains why these 8 iconic attractions are far from “traps.”

Have you ever dreamed of snorkeling in crystal-clear … 35-degree glacier water? No? Well, the Expert Vagabond’s experience snorkeling Silfra fissure in Iceland might change your mind.

After a 3-month stay, Nomadic Matt shares his 6 life lessons learned in China.

If you’re thinking of indulging in high tea around the holidays but don’t know what to wear, the Luxe Travel has you covered.

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