During my three week journey, I went to Santo Domingo, where I stayed with a fantastic lady and her two daughters. I visited Villa Mella, Boca Chica and San Pedro de Macoris, home of most of the Dominican descended MLB players. I interviewed people on the beach, on the street, attended the final (9th) day of an Espiritu Santo funeral in a batey, was a guest on CDN-La Radio’s Haitian-Dominican radio talk show, ‘Dialoga en la Isla’ and was blown away by new insight and information.
I then went to Colombia, accompanied for a few days and was offered tremendous help from my dear friend Tee. We explored Cartagena and journeyed to San Basilio de Palenque, a maroon town established by a slave who ran away from the Port of Cartagena in the 16th century. I then continued on to Bogota then Cali, the salsa capital and where I met new friends and new insight into race relations and the war and displacement in Colombia. A 10-hour bus ride with tremendous views to Medellin before my last stop in Quibdo, in the Choco Region, where I was welcomed by a local woman who didn’t leave my side. I observed the Afro-Colombian campaigns throughout the country as well as the negative reasons why the campaigns are needed.
After a missed plane and bout of a stomach sickness, I have a lot of work ahead but this is a labor of love and I thank you all for your support as I embark on my journey. I am currently working on the rest of the series and conducting interviews in the U.S. The candor and insight will continue to blow you away as it has done me.
The city smells like urine
Which would be expected with the ample and free drinking going on but I would be lying if I didn’t cringe and die inside when walking most of the city wondering if the puddle I almost stepped in was rainwater or…
It’s more commercialized and less authentic
Let me be frank, it’s an epic frat party on spring break steroids. Some of the locals say the carnival in Salvador Bahia is better and more “real.” Not my words, but I can see why. Rio carnival was a blast but it was more a battle of the obnoxious and insane and who could be the superlative of both. I’d love to go back to Rio, but not during Carnival but I’d recommend it as a once in a lifetime travel destination. Read More
Bring two different sized locks
Hostels usually provide a space for you to lock your belongings. Some offer the lock and key, others just provide the compartment and it’s up to you to use your lock. The size of the metal loop may vary as I learned when my regular bulky lock was rejected for my itty bitty lock.
Download a currency converter app
This works no matter what country you’re in. It’s at your fingertips and it takes all the guesswork on conversion budgeting. Especially handy in countries where the bills are in the thousands such as in Colombia. Read More
George Hobica, founder of the travel website Airfarewatchdog.com, drafted a list of possible new charges airlines may adopt this year, some of which he said are already active in the U.S. and Europe. Want to get ahead of the curve and prepare yourself on how to avoid those imaginary pesky fees airlines may tack on? Follow this guide.
Leave your baby at home
That’ll save you 30 bucks each way to hold your baby on your lap.
Check in on-line or at a kiosk
To eschew the In-person check-in fee to check in with an airline employee.
Don’t transfer your ticket
Airlines may charge a fee to transfer a non-refundable ticket to someone else.
Continue reading on Examiner.com: How to Avoid the Possible New Airline Fees – New York International Travel | Examiner.com
The cost of flying is steadily rising, don’t get left behind, here are a few simple tricks to getting a cheaper ticket.
Buy a ticket on Tuesday afternoon
It’s cheaper. Just try it.
Buy a ticket at obscene hours of the nights
This works. I’ve seen the price for a particular flight jump up $100 from 2a.m. to 10a.m.
Continue reading on Examiner.com: Getting the cheapest airline ticket – New York International Travel | Examiner.com
AirBnb allows users to search for accommodations via postings from locals of their particular destination. You can find people renting out rooms in their apartments or renting out whole studios, apartments and condos as well as listings for dorm rooms and bed and breakfasts. You request the room and the owner of the property confirms or denies your request. User-friendly, convenient and offers another option to hostels and hotels with a local flair.
Read the rest at Examiner.com
Planning to travel this year? Before you do, check this list to see the most worthwhile times to visit a city.
Caye Caulker – Belizean Island in the dead of winter? Don’t mind if I do.
New York City has a wealth of Black History events in every borough. From film screenings, book readings, panel discussions and exhibits there is something educational for everyone to partake in.
Carnival Time around the world. Brazil, Trinidad, New Orleans all celebrate their carnaval in a huge way. Any of these destinations would be worth it. My choice is Brazil this year.
Read More at Examiner.com
Sometimes travelers end up seeing and exploring more of a foreign city than their very own. Next time you have time off take time to discover your city too.
Plan a full day of activities
Wake up early and plan a jam packed schedule of to-do’s. Museums, shows, lunch, dinner, the whole nine. Remember to take pictures!
Research your city like a tourist
You know all those sites and blogs (ahem, yours truly) you use to get tips on what to do in a city? Do that with your city. Do an internet search on current happenings and must-see limited time only events.
Read More at Examiner.com
As I praise solo travel, there are definite cons to choosing to do so. I’ve put together a list of pitfalls I’ve come across as well as the pros of such travel. It’s important to weigh which are more important to you when embarking on your destinations.
No one to take your picture
Any travel pictures I have with me in them were taken by complete strangers. 99% of people oblidge when you ask nicely no matter what language you speak. A simple smile, and point to your camera does the trick, but there was that time in Prague when I was denied my picture and it was a bit maddening. Read More at Examiner.com
It’s nice to be a tourist in a foreign city. It’s way better to get a native feel for the places you visit. Here are a few of my most notable experiences.
Johnnie Fox’s is in Glencullen on top of the Dublin mountains, as stated on their website “Johnnie Fox’s is one of Ireland’s oldest and most famous traditional Irish pubs.” Just getting there was an experience in itself as I felt we were driving completely vertical up the mountain. The sheep that dotted the steep mountains made me laugh. The warm locals and the hospitable Irish family we went with had us laughing even harder. Couldn’t understand most of what they were saying but the Irish were the warmest of the Europeans I have met thus far.
Figueres, is in the province of Girona, Catalonia, Spain. It is the birthplace of artist Salvador Dali, and houses the Teatre-Museu Gala Salvador Dalí, a large museum designed by Dalí himself. It is a small old town Spanish locale. Only a couple hours outside Barcelona and accessible by train from Barcelona, it is worth the trip.
Read More at Examiner.com