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What’s Your Craziest Flying Experience?

October 29, 2014 by

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We’ve all heard the familiar adage it’s the journey that matters, not the destination — at least when it comes to crazy travel stories. With all of the globetrotting that the staff here at ShermansTravel does throughout the year, we certainly have more than our fair share of hilarious (and somewhat awful) tales. So we thought we’d share the best (and the worst) with our readers to keep in mind the next time you take off in an aluminum tube full of strangers.

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How to Budget a Trip to South America’s Atacama Desert

October 29, 2014 by

atacama - Flickr-Jim Trodel

When visiting South America’s Atacama Desert — considered to be the driest place on earth – you have little choice but to make the small village of San Pedro de Atacama your home base. Such isolation typically leads to high costs of living (and visiting), but San Pedro has an impressive range of lodging options, from hostels costing a few bucks a night to luxury resorts with thousand-dollar price tags. And with a surprising amount of competition among tour companies, there are affordable options for all budgets. With that in mind, here’s a look at how you might want to allocate your dollars.

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Checking In: 21c Museum Hotel Cincinnati

October 29, 2014 by

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If you were in search of one of the top-rated hotels in the United States, you probably wouldn’t think to look for it in Ohio. Nevertheless, 21c Museum Hotel Cincinnati was recently named the second best hotel in the country by readers of Conde Nast Traveler. (Last year it was ranked #1.) So, what makes this hotel so special that it beat out much-hyped properties in bigger destination cities like Los Angeles and New York?

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Why You Should Visit Temecula, CA for a Relaxing and Budget-Friendly Escape

October 28, 2014 by

Temecula Creek Inn Restaurant via TCI

Travelers love California for its amazing wine and golf offerings, but there are even more reasons to visit some of the state’s lesser known cities. About an hour outside of San Diego, Temecula appeals with a laid-back artisan culture and a focus on the natural landscape. A rental car is really all you need to explore — and here are five reasons why you should.

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Cruise Tracker: A Novel Way to Fund Your Cruise, Holiday Sailings and More

October 28, 2014 by

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Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? We’ve got the latest on luxury sales, a great idea for crowd-funding your next vacation, holiday itineraries, and more. 

Now here’s a great idea for newlywed travelers: Rather than asking for home appliances, why not have friends and family contribute to your post-nuptial trip? Princess CruisesHoneymoon Wishes Registry allows others to chip in for everything from cruise fare and shore excursions to specialty dining and drinks by the pool to relaxing spa treatments. All gifts are applied as an onboard credit to the couple’s stateroom account to use during their honeymoon cruise, and the bride and groom can create an accompanying website to share wedding details and personal photos.

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Early Bird Ski Deals: $79+ Rooms, Lift/Pass Packages, and More

October 27, 2014 by

Squaw Valley - flickr-Rennett Stowe

While skiers and riders embrace the feet upon feet of powder, there’s no arguing that snow sports is expensive. Besides passes, there’s also the gear and the lodging to take into account. Good thing early bird bookings means lodging and ski packages that allow you to save — so you’ll still have some money left over for airfare, meals, and entertainment. But hurry; some of these expire this week. Read more

An Affordable, Car-Free Getaway on Michigan’s Mackinac Island

October 27, 2014 by

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As Michigan’s supremely serene and car-free getaway, Mackinac Island is characterized by the ubiquitous clip-clop of horse-drawn carriages and a history rich enough to excite any U.S. travel nerd. The island, which is accessed via ferry during the warmer months and snowmobile during the coldest months, offers so much in its relatively small 3.8 square miles of space, including a former military fort and several well-known hotels (you may have heard of The Grand Hotel, which was the setting of the film Somewhere in Time, starring Christopher Reeve). It also features too many fudge shops to count and a biking/walking circumference (Lake Shore Boulevard) that offers idyllic views of lighthouses and the often moody Haldimand Bay.

If you have just a weekend to spend on Mackinac, there are plenty of ways to get maximum mileage of this car-free getaway, and to experience the island as the Islanders do. Here are a few suggestions.

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Inspired Travel: Stay in Vintage Trailers, Refurbbed Airplanes & Other “Upcycled” Digs

October 27, 2014 by

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Why sleep in a concrete-and-glass building when you can stay in a vintage trailer, a Boeing 747, or even in a wine barrel? These quirky hotel concepts are totally refreshing — and they give obsolete spaces a sustainable second life.

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Foodie Friday: Where to Celebrate National Chocolate Day

October 24, 2014 by

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For some, Chocolate Day is every day, but one chocoholic went the extra mile and declared October 28 as National Chocolate Day. Here are just four of the sweetest places to celebrate:

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Deal Alert: Kimpton Hotels from $99 This Winter

October 24, 2014 by

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Kimpton Hotels & Restaurant’s annual Karma Rewards Sale is back! This means the boutique hotel group is offering its lowest rates of the year — starting as low as $99 at some properties — along with double stay credit. To take advantage of the special rates, you’ll have to become a Karma Rewards member, but joining is free.

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How to: Choose Between Napa and Sonoma

October 24, 2014 by

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Napa and Sonoma both offer great wines, great food, and incredible experiences, but because there’s so much to do in each county that visitors usually focus on one or the other. Which is the best option for you? Here’s a guide for how to choose.

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Q&A: Jenny McCarthy’s Favorite Chicago and Boston Restaurants

October 23, 2014 by

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Jenny McCarthy is a Chicago girl at heart, but now, her heart belongs to Boston-born hubby Donnie Wahlberg. And it’s no secret she loves to eat, so we had to ask what her favorite spots are back home as well as in Donnie’s hometown. Check out Jenny’s restaurant recommendations, must-shop stops, and more in our exclusive interview.

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Four Unexpected Gems Just Outside Daytona Beach

October 23, 2014 by

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After shedding an unfortunate reputation for being a go-to destination for raucous spring breakers in the ‘90s and early 2000s, Daytona Beach has become a year-round destination for couples and families. And it’s more than just sand and strip malls — there’s visiting the Museum of Arts and Sciences, working on your swing at the many mini golf courses, tackling a zipline course, and getting suited up like a professional racecar driver during the Richard Petty Driving Experience at the Daytona International Speedway.

As guests of the Daytona Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau, we recently got the chance to taste the destination’s revival for ourselves. Here are the highlights of what we found:

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8 Things to Know About Booking a Disney Cruise Line “Land and Sea Vacation”

October 23, 2014 by

Flickr Joe Turco2

Want the ultimate Disney vacation? There’s a way you can enjoy Mickey and friends on both land and sea: by combining a stay at a Walt Disney World hotel with a trip aboard Disney Cruise Line that embarks from Port Canaveral.

The easiest way to do this is to first book the cruise, then make your stay at Disney World an add-on with a Land and Sea Vacation package. But there are some caveats with this method of booking — here’s the dish on what you should know.

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Deal Alert: New Miami Suites Opening December

October 23, 2014 by

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Opening on December 1, Gale Suites at Kaskades will be an all-suite newly restored wing of Miami’s retro-luxe Gale South Beach, which itself opened just two years ago. Read more

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