ALL POSTS IN [Travel Tips]

Photo Courtesy of Heather Greenwood Davis

After having children, a parent’s priorities can shift dramatically, decreasing the desire and the time allowed to travel. However, there are several parents who manage to make travel more of a priority, encouraging their children to become active participants in planning each family trip. And Heather Greenwood Davis and her family are the quintessential example of making travel an inclusive and real-world educational experience.

Heather has received several accolades for her travel spirit. She was recognized in 2012 as National Geographic Traveler magazine’s Traveler of the Year. As a travel journalist and the founder of GlobetrottingMama.com, she has also been recognized as a leading family travel and mommy blogger by Babble.com, WorkingMother.com and BlogHer.com. Knowing Heather and her family already had miles of travel experience under their belts, we thought it would be great to talk to her to see how she and her husband make travel work as a family.

Make sure you check out Heather’s favorite family adventure picks on our list of Travel’s Best Family Adventures 2015.
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Photo Courtesy of Zim Ugochukwu, Travel Noire

For some people, travel is all about those unique, immersive experiences. But what happens when you are the ethnically different outsider visiting a homogeneous travel destination that is not exposed to much cultural diversity? Well, it’s these types of experiences that Travel Noire tries to capture with its network of nomads around the world, offering an Afro-centric perspective that has been missing from mainstream travel resources.

Zim Ugochukwu, founder of Travel Noire, is leading the charge to provide a website to showcase African and African-American travel perspectives and to encourage people of color to make travel an integral part of their lives. And as you will soon discover, this first-generation Nigerian — born in Rochester, MN — has the expertise to provide advice about everything from solo travel to expat life — definitive reasons why Zim is our type of traveler.

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Here at Travel Channel, we’ll go to the end of … the Internet in search of inspiring travel stories. Here are just a few of the travel blogs, online ‘zines and YouTube channels we frequent for your bookmarking pleasure.

If your first question is always, “Where are we going to eat?” …

The New Potato
You can learn a lot about a city from its restaurants and the tastemakers who call it home. Sisters Danielle and Laura Kosann dish up both on The New Potato.

Eat This Poem
English majors, rejoice! Nicole Gulotta of Eat This Poem curates literary city guides; consider them your field guide to the best bookstores, coffee shops, places to have a proper meal and other fun finds.

If you’re looking for new travel hacks …

Landlopers

Photo by LandLopers

Landlopers
Matt Long’s blog, Landlopers, is a mix of travel news, tips and guides that are informative, entertaining and accessible to the non-backpacker-but-still-want-an-adventure crowd.

TripHackr
If “maximizing every day and every dollar” is a travel mantra you can get behind, you’ll want to dial in to Clint Johnston’s daily outposts on TripHackr, which run the gamut from 72-hour guides, roundups and “hacks” he’s picked up from years on the road.

If you like to just press “play” …

Your Expedition South
Alex Chacón rode a motorcycle around the world for 3 years and documented it all on his blog, Your Expedition South. While we love reading about his modern motorcycle diaries, it’s his videos that caught our attention. Selfie + drone in Veracruz, Mexico? Boom.

Sonia’s Travels
Sonia Gil is a familiar face at Travel Channel thanks to her Almost Free web series, but it’s also worth tuning in to her personal channel for a steady stream of product reviews, packing tips and moments from her travels around the world.

If you’re looking for a kindred spirit …

One Mile at a Time
To the average traveler who’s used points for a cheaper fare or upgrade, this one might be a bit overwhelming. However, if you’ve ever considered flying to Stockholm for dinner to secure a certain rewards status, as our own mileage runner did, One Mile at a Time is a must-read.

Kelly Purkey

Photo by Kelly Purkey

Kelly Purkey
Paper-goods designer Kelly Purkey, by her own admission, travels more than she’s at home. On her blog, she shares details of her travels, from beautiful interiors to packing tips, always with a keen eye for design.

To immerse yourself in far-flung cities …

Local Milk
A recipe and food blog first and foremost, native Tennessean Beth Kirby’s Local Milk landed on our radar because of her “slow living” creative retreats. Her hauntingly beautiful photos and words remind you to be present in the moment and find beauty in the mundane while soaking up the beautiful backdrop.

Boat Magazine
The nomadic team behind Boat magazine spends several weeks in a city before featuring it in the magazine. What emerges are honest, “inside-out” portraits that evolve just like the cities they are covering. Check out the team’s journal to tide you over in between issues.

We’re always on the lookout for a fresh perspective on travel. Share your favorites in the comments!

Mardi Gras in New Orleans

Mardi Gras in New Orleans (Photo: Getty Images)

“Fat Tuesday” is observed around the world, but only in New Orleans can you celebrate with the true flair of a party-ragin’ Cajun. There’s plenty to do during one of the biggest annual celebrations in America. And in a multilingual city with a rich French colonial history, there are myriad options for Carnival fun. It’s no coincidence that The Big Easy is sometimes referred to as the “most unique in the United States,” and this annual bead-begging bash shows exactly why.

A direct flight from New York to New Orleans is about 3 hours. From Los Angeles it’s just 1 hour more. And from Washington, DC, it’s only a 2 1/2 -hour jaunt, all of which makes it easy to jump right into the Mardi Gras mix. Once you arrive in New Orleans you’ll want a comfy place to rest up and energize from the day’s travels. Here are a few suggestions for enjoying Mardi Gras in New Orleans that will fit almost any budget. READ MORE

Photo Courtesy of Reuters

The northeastern US is preparing for a major winter storm that is expected to drop up to 3 feet of snow and bring near-hurricane-force winds. According to the National Weather Service, blizzard conditions are expected to affect more than 40 million people, including those in big cities such as NYC and Boston, where all forms of travel have been banned.
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Photo Courtesy of Travel Channel

It’s new and improved! TravelChannel.com relaunched Thursday with a cleaner design and better user experience. The Travel Channel Digital Team has been working long hours over the past year to find ways to improve the website and enhance specific features. Here’s a quick list of some of the changes Travel Channel users will notice when clicking around the new site:

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Photography by Walter Bibkow / The Image Bank / Getty Images

Cuba has long been the holy grail of travel destinations for many American passport holders, tempting them with the difficulty — or, for many, the near impossibility — of ever traveling there. For decades, US citizens who wanted to visit the island had to apply for special licenses, justify their travel to government agencies, or avoid the law altogether by entering Cuba via other countries.

But starting Friday, things get a whole lot easier. Under the new standards, travelers can visit Cuba without applying for a license if they qualify under one of 12 categories of authorized travel, which include family visits, research, education, public performances and humanitarian projects.
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Emily Riddell/ Lonely Planet Images/ Getty Images

“Travel more.” It’s one resolution that tops our list every year. We think it has more lasting impact on our quality of life than going gluten-free or cleaning out our closet — and we imagine it’ll give us much better stories, too.

Here are 7 more resolutions to make the most out of your travels in 2015.

Live like the locals.
Take advantage of the growing trend of travel companies offering opportunities to connect to local tastemakers such as chefs, musicians and artists. Not only will you dig deeper into the culture and learn where the tourist-free bars are, but you might even bring home a new recipe or piece of art that’s attached to a great story. And with sites such as OneFineStay.com, you can even stay in locals’ homes when they’re out of town and live out your fantasy of being a New Yorker in a historical brownstone or a Londoner in a posh pied-a-terre.

Connect with limits.
If completely unplugging on vacation seems like an impossible feat, you’re not alone. As more technology is developed to make traveling easier, including keyless hotel rooms and smartwatches that let you book travel, it becomes harder to see the advantages of disconnecting on a trip. We find it more realistic to give ourselves limits, such as checking email only at a certain time of the day and not inundating our followers with humblebrag Instagram photos of every stunning sunset we encounter. Savor the fleeting moments of travel, revel in the experience, and keep your smartphone tucked in your bag instead of in your hand.

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Barbara Helgason/Hemera/Thinkstock

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.

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Photo Courtesy of Clint Johnston

We appreciate world travelers who fly for free and never pay full price. That’s why we decided to talk to Clint Johnston, author of The Art of Travel Hacking and blogger for his website, Triphackr.com. Clint enjoys sharing tips and money-saving advice after traveling to more than 60 countries. In addition to writing for TravelChannel.com, Clint has had work appear on the Huffington Post and in Wired.

It’s clear when talking to Clint that he is a savvy, immersive traveler who enjoys unusual experiences such as kite-surfing in Brazil, meeting a Haitian voodoo priest and witnessing everyday life in Palestine firsthand. Clint doesn’t travel to add another fresh stamp to his passport; he relishes the priceless culture experiences and off-the-beaten-path excursions that really define travel.

You’ll be surprised to find out what sparked Clint’s love for travel, what’s next on his bucket list, what travel gear he never leaves home without, and what advice he has for first-time travelers.
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