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Globetrooper News: Around The World

Svalbard – Arctic wild country

At 78 degrees N – a mere 12 degrees from the North Pole – Longyearbyen is as far north as I’ve ever been. Svalbard is more commonly referred to as Spitsbergen in English. Spitsbergen is in fact the name of the largest island in the group, but Svalbard is the name of the entire archipelago. Svalbard is rugged, absurdly beautiful and has more polar bears than humans. This is Arctic wild country.

Street art in Bratislava

Where can you find a man poking his head up through a hole in the street, a paparazzi photographer peeking around a corner, a Napoleonic soldier on a bench in the old town, and a beloved local 20th century personality? In Bratislava, that’s where.

Things to do in Kiev

What first springs to mind when you hear the name Kiev? Capital of the Ukraine? You’re right, of course. Some might think of Chernobyl 1986, one of the worst nuclear disasters in history. If you’re into pop culture, Kiev was venue of the Eurovision Song Contest in 2005. Politics? Perhaps the Orange Revolution of 2004 comes to mind?

Flirting with Fate in the Faroes

Oyggjarvegur, the old mountain road from Torshavn, the tiny capital of the Faroes, towards the northern islands, is spectacular. But then, nothing less is to be expected in the world’s best island-destination. In places, there are no barriers between us and a 1000-foot drop into the chilling waters of the North Atlantic fjord. We edge slowly towards the deliciously dizzying chasm.

Things to do in Skopje

Skopje isn’t what leaps to mind when you think of European cities, is it? It’s probably among the lesser known capitals, perhaps best known for being the birthplace of Mother Theresa. So what can you see and do in Macedonia’s little capital? Here are my notes, from a lazy April Saturday night and a long Sunday morning. Skopje’s Stone Bridge is a major landmark. On one side of the bridge is the modern Macedonia Square, on the other is the old bazaar and Ottoman Skopje.

Being in Vancouver on the Night of Game 7

I was in Vancouver for the last few games of the Stanley Cup (Hockey) finals this year and it was interesting, to say the least. Vancouver is one of my favorite towns in the world with some of the best people around, but a few crazy idiots really cast a lot of shame down on this great town that night.

Pamplona, Spain and the Famous Bulls

There is little doubt that one of the most iconic festivals anywhere in the world is the famous San Fermin festival. Never heard of it?  OK, let’s put it this way — it is where the running with the bulls happens in Pamplona, Spain. Now, I bet you are all ears. I went a few weeks ago and this is that story, plus some great photos.

Things to do in Grenada

The island of Grenada is one of my favorites in the Caribbean. It is at the bottom of the Windward Islands and doesn’t get nearly the love of its more famous neighbors. So, I did up a little “5 Reasons to Visit Grenada” and hope you like it and give it a chance.

Amsterdam: a Quick Stop in a Great City

Amsterdam is one of the great cities of Europe, but I hadn’t been there to visit until very briefly. I had a few days there last month on a layover coming back to the States and this is my quickie overview of it. Really enjoyed it a lot.

A Historical Guide to Real Mexican Tequila

Guest Post on everything you need to know about Tequila from its historical roots, the birth of the famed margarita and what to do if you find your self in Guadalajara looking for a taste of culture. It’s more than just a drink, it’s an adventure.

Google Your RTW Travel Plans

Tips and resources for preparing for your RTW or long term travel. Letting Google help you stay better organized and keep track of all your important travel itineraries and documents.

Reasons to Visit Dahab, Egypt Right Now

The Middle East has been getting a bit of an unfair, bad rap lately.  Sure, there are countries that you shouldn’t be visiting right now, like Syria and Libya, but the rest of the region is safe and wonderful… and you can get great deals. I have been spending the last month in Dahab, Egypt on the Red Sea and loving it.  Here’s why.

Tour of a Lebanon Winery

I was quite surprised that Lebanon does some really good wines, mostly in the Beqaa Valley area. I toured a number of wineries while I was there and here are my notes and photos from one of them, the Domaine des Tourelles. Hope you enjoy and think about your love of good wine everywhere.

Damascus Souk at Night (Video)

The Damascus souk is one of the world’s largest and most interesting. I thought that one way you could get a slightly better appreciation of it would be to take a few 30 second or so video clips. Bummer was that I forgot to do this in the height of the business of the day, but did get there to take a couple at night.

Great Beirut Surprise

I got really lucky before I went to Lebanon a couple months ago and got introduced to some locals that were going to give me some tips about Beirut and Lebanon in general. Turns out they were the PR people for the Phoenicia Hotel — a 5 star property, which is so unlike what I am used to.  Here is a bit of that story and the multi-day tour they took me on of that great hotel.

Falling Whistles – Will you become a whistleblower for peace?

Help Support a great cause and become a whistleblower for peace in the Democratic Republic of the Congo where children too small to carry guns are armed with whistles where, “with falling whistles, their only choice is to feign death or face it.”

Why is Friday the “Day of Rage” in the Middle East?

One of the many interesting things about traveling in foreign lands are the basic things that are different from back home. One of those in the Middle East is that Friday is more like Saturday in most parts of the world — it is the first day of the weekend. And midday Friday prayers are the only prayers during the Muslim week where are you supposed to go to the mosque… ergo that day being a day of organization in some of the recent uprisings over here. Go read more.

Interview with Rick Griffin of Mid-Life Road Trip: Lucky 13 Questions

Rick is one of the most multi-talented travel bloggers out there today, but to limit him to merely a blogger would do him a great disservice. TV personality. One of the minds behind the popular #NUTS Twitter chat. Adventure traveler. Just go read his interview and enjoy getting to know him better.

The Taxi Cab Guide: What You Need to Know

One of the things that you are going to have to deal with as your travel around the world is taxi cab drivers. Some are the greatest people you will ever meet in your lifetime. Unfortunately, a lot more are out to try to scam every dollar they can get out of your pocket. Hope you enjoy some of these basic tips for how to deal with cabbies around the world.

Guide to finding cheap cruises to Antarctica

There are many myths about traveling to Antarctica, the biggest being price.  Most people don’t go to Antarctica and are scared away by the large $10,000 price tags that a cruise to Antarctica can have.  I can easily tell you that you don’t have to pay that much cruise to Antarctica.  You can find deals for an average price of $3,000.

How Buenos Aires is Exactly Like Paris

The city that was once the epicenter of the world at the turn of the 21stcentury. People from around the world want to not only visit Buenos Aires, but actually live there.  The Paris of the South can easily be compared to the romantic city of Paris.  Things are changing however and you may not be able to see it much longer.

Sarah Outen Launches London-2-London Expedition

An inspirational young adventurer, Sarah Outen is 3 days into her ‘London-2-London via the World’ Expedition.  A Two Boats, One Bike, Two Oceans and Three Continents journey around the world, Sarah will be paddling and pedaling her way around the world for the next little while.

Best of New Zealand

A special “Best of” post for me during the week of #Blog4NZ was my Best of New Zealand post. It is one of my favorite countries and on the short list of places I’d like to eventually retire. Come check out the many reasons it is so great.

Thrill-seekers turn to horse boarding for latest ‘extreme’ sport

So-called British ‘thrill-seekers’ were competing today in the new extreme sport of horse boarding, in which participants are towed behind a horse on a skateboard at speeds of up to 35mph. It sounds more ‘extreme’ than the video actually shows; a couple of guys in full motorcross pads being tugged around a stable, and repeat, and repeat again. I wanna see some jumps!

First Impressions of Brazil

Carnival is an experience that I think everyone should have. There are many people that were telling me to be careful and I would have been but it seemed that the entire world was converging for Carnival in Salvador. When there are hoards of people outside at even 5 and 6 in the morning you are much less likely to get jacked.

Traveling and Dying: the Real Risks, not the Hype

As an avid scuba diver, I wanted to take a quick (and hopefully humorous) look at the real risks of getting attacked by sharks verses real risks that you face in your everyday life. Here is the analysis. Let’s just say that it might be riskier to sleep naked than to scuba dive in shark infested waters…

Speaking in Penguin Tongue

Neko Harbour is home to a large penguin colony and also one of the oldest British bases.  Once you depart the southern most city in the world, Ushuaia, your cheap Antarctica cruise will take you to this popular Antarctica attraction.  This is also the location where you can send your Antarctica postcards which will take over 2 mos to arrive.

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