Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Hot Tips from Travel Gurus at L.A. Travel Show



I had the pleasure of listening to Pauline Frommer and Peter Greenberg. Here are some of thier best tips.
 I

Pauline Frommer at www.Frommers.com  has tons of good info including podcasts of recent Travel Show Talks.
Peter Greenberg of Travel Detective fame. PBS show with lots of nuts and bolts information that helps you “Get off the Brochure.”


Peter insists that you get good travel insurance before you go. www.Insuremytrip.com is a good site to compare companies that offer travel insurance. He loves Medjetassistance.com and buys an annual policy. I use Travel Guard. They are the only company I know of that will give you medical emergency travel insurance separate from a larger all-inclusive policy

He likes .Darksky weather app because it lets him know the weather conditions where he is going.
www.TourRadar.com  according to Pauline is a wonderful source for finding the right outfitter for the region you want to explore. Outfitters from around the globe are listed here. Just enter your destination and away you go.

www.stridetravel.com is another site that gives you a roundup of outfitters

www.hostelbookers.com  is Pauline’s favorite source for lodging search. She says hostels are much nicer than they used to be and are cheaper than hotels.

www.autoslash.com. They give you best price on car rentals and apply any coupons that are applicable. What is more they will drop the price if it changes while you are waiting to begin your trip. Be sure and get their insurance if you are traveling in a foreign country.  Especially, if you are not used to driving on the “wrong side” of the road.

www.toursbylocals.com   is a great site if you have a couple of days before connecting with a group, or are an independent traveler. Just contact them ahead of time and they will be happy to give a very personal tour of their region. Let them know what you are especially interested in and they will try to comply.

HAPPY TRAVELS
Find a host of adventure travel articles at www.LindaBallouAuthor.com.
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Saturday, March 10, 2018

March is Women's History Month.-I salute Ka'ahumanu on her 250th Birthday


Chiefess Ka’ahumanu

On March 17, 1768 (some say 1777) Ka’ahumanu was born in a cave at the fortress hill of Ka’uiki in Hana. The fierce Moi of Maui, once her mother’s lover, became so enraged when she chose Ke’eamuoku over him that he set his warriors upon her parents. They chased them through Haleakala Crater, but lost them in thick mountain forests. While Ka’ahumanu was still a baby her parents fled from Hana to Hawai’i where they lived in royal comfort. Wai-nani,A Voice from old Hawai’i my historical novel (1750-1819) is inspired by the life of the precocious Chiefess Ka’ahumanu. To some she is remembered as the” loving mother of the people” and to others she is the “flaw that brought down the chiefdom.”
 Ka’uiki in Hana


Brave, athletic, strong, passionate, caring and centered in herself, I saw her as a forerunner of the modern woman. It was a tremendous gift to be given the opportunity to visit the cave where she was born. It took the entire crew of six members of the Hana Canoe Club to paddle me to her birthplace.  We pointed the tip of the outrigger into the oncoming waves that sloshed over the bow and paddled through the foaming surf to the protected shallow waters lapping at the lava rocks beneath  the cave where she was born. I climbed the jagged black lava to a path that led to a large opening with two indentations big enough to accommodate a human.  Her mother enjoyed a lovely view of Hana Bay and the green mountains floating on the horizon. Offerings of flowers were placed in front of the openings. Before leaving I floated in the waters at the foot of her cave considered to be healing by those who come here for sacred ceremonies. 
 Big Mahalo to friend and fellow author, Lorraine Brodek, for fulfilling my desire to visit the sacred birthplace of the woman that inspired my novel Wai-nani, A Voice from Old Hawai’i





Written With Warm Aloha
In the Name of Ka’ahumanu

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Sneak Peek of Iguazu Falls



My South American sojourn with Overseas Adventure Travel began and ended in Buenos Aires, but fellow travlers went on to explore Iguazu Falls. Susan Pedrick, an avid photographer, captured highlights of the worlds largest falls and is sharing them here. I admit that after seeing her photo essay that I wish I had gone the extra distance. 
Catwalk to the falls

Igauzu Falls


Devil's throat
Local children

Buffet at Eco Lodge




Relaxing at days end

Thank you Susan Pedrick for sharing your images


My mission is to get to as many beautiful places I can before they are gone!!
www.LindaBallouAuthor.com








Sunday, March 4, 2018

South American Sojourn Trilogy

 My sojourn in South America began and ended in Buenos Aires where half the population of Argentina reside. Like most Americans, my knowledge of the geography of South America is a bit fuzzy. The journey took me to less-traveled parts of Argentinaand Chile providing an overview of the landscape and high points, which I have shared in a series of pieces. 

First Stop: Buenos Aires to Bariloche, Argentina

Church bells ring outside my window and remind me that Buenos Aires is a strongly Catholic town.

You may recall that Pope Francis is from Buenos Aires and and he often returns to speak at the Metropolitan Cathedral, considered the heart of the city—a city that is a frenetic beehive of activity.  Buenos Aires to Bariloche






Second Stop  
Puerto Varas, nestled sweetly on the south shore of Llanquihue (“yan key way”) the largest lake in Chile, is the adventure hub of the Chilean Lake District.  On the far shore, the snow-tipped Orsorno Volcano offers head-spinning vistas for hikers in the summer (November-March) and in winter, thrilling downhill ski runs.
In the glacier moraine valley below lies the gateway to Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park, where you can explore the Petrohué Waterfalls. Puerto Varas is also the headquarters for Pumalín Park, a pristine wilderness area with native forests laced with cascading waterfalls. Let Adventure Find you in Puerto Varas
Third Stop
I am sipping coffee at Hotel Lago Grey in Torres del Paine, Chile before everyone arrives for breakfast. An exquisite rainbow is arcing to the left of a panorama of turquoise glacier-fed waters framed in snow tipped-giants that soar to 10,000 feet. I feel as misty as the gauzy clouds drifting over the Paine Massif; privileged to behold the grandeur before me.  Wet and Wild Patagonia
The Iconic " Horns" are behind me

This was an incredible journey. I would love to go back and horseback ride, river raft and hike in all of these regions. Thank you to Overseas Adventure Travel for giving me this overview

My mission is to get to as many beautiful places I can before they are gone!! 
www.LindaBallouAuthor.com