All posts by Katie Hammel

Katie Hammel has written about travel, food, and wine for publications including BBC Travel, TravelandLeisure.com, AOL Travel, the San Francisco Chronicle, New York Daily News, and others. In addition to her freelance work, she is the Senior Travel Editor at Viator, a company that sells tours and activities around the world, where she manages a team of 30 contributing writers. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and spends weekends exploring the city and the rest of northern California.
Sonoma, California, vineyards
Sonoma County/iStock

On Sunday, October 8, 2017, a series of deadly wildfires sparked in Northern California’s Sonoma, Napa, and Mendocino counties. For nearly two weeks, the fires raged on, filling the air across the Bay Area with smoke. The fires caused more than $3 billion in damage and burned nearly 200,000... Read More

Napa by Katie Hammel
Katie Hammel

For nearly two weeks in early October, a series of wildfires—the deadliest in California history— swept through the famed wine regions of Napa and Sonoma. As the smoke clears, the region is still reeling from the devastating loss of life and the destruction of thousands of homes. During the... Read More

Deep Mani, Greece, coast
Deep Mani/Katie Hammel

The Peloponnese Peninsula, a few hours’ drive west from Athens, is undiscovered Greece at its best. There are quiet mountaintop towns, historic cities, ancient ruins, soft sand beaches, and a growing wine scene. The two things it lacks: tourist crowds an exorbitant prices. The Peloponnese figures prominently in Greek... Read More

Santorini/iStock
Santorini/iStock

Santorini is known as the most romantic island in Greece, and with good reason. Whitewashed buildings rise up from the sparkling blue sea, candlelit taverns overlook the ocean, and the golden sunsets in Oia are events worthy of an audience. Of course, Santorini’s beauty and popularity mean it’s also... Read More

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Paris, France, Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome, Presidential Suite
Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome/Presidential Suite

Private elevators, butler service, secret passages, and more space than most single-family homes—the world’s most over-the-top luxury suites pull out all the stops, with amenities that’ll make your jaw drop. But, they don’t come cheap. From several hundred to several thousand dollars per night, these once-in-a-lifetime stays will cost... Read More

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ARRIVE Palm Springs by Arielle Vey
ARRIVE Palm Springs by Arielle Vey

Gone are the days when only a few major hotel chains dominated the landscape — and booking a hotel meant choosing between a high style, high priced hotel and a boring, bland, budget chain. More and more boutique brands have entered the market, and legacy brands like Marriott and... Read More

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Cromwell
Cromwell

With more than 100,000 guest rooms in more than 200 hotels on and around the Strip, there’s no shortage of accommodation options in Sin City. From lavish suites bigger than most houses to seedy motels of questionable cleanliness, there’s a wide range of price and quality. These Las Vegas... Read More

Aerial view of Las Vegas strip in Nevada as seen at night USA
iStock

Las Vegas has always been about extremes highs and lows. The excitement of those who win big and the desperation of those who lose it all. The energy of the action on the Strip and the emptiness of the surrounding desert. But when it comes to food, you don’t... Read More

Temple Bar in Dublin
Katie Hammel

Dublin, the capital and largest city in Ireland, is the starting point for most visitors to the Emerald Isle. The home of Guinness, the birthplace and muse of dozens of history’s greatest writers, and one of Europe’s great cities, it’s well worth staying a few days before or after... Read More

Guinness Factory in Ireland
Katie Hammel

With more than 15 million pints of Guinness consumed each day in more than 150 countries, the popularity of this Irish beer spreads far beyond its home country. Yet Guinness remains synonymous with Ireland and for many visitors, having a few pints tops their list of “must do” activities... Read More

Galway, Ireland
Galway/Katie Hammel

Set on Ireland’s west coast, 130 miles from the bustling capital of Dublin, Galway may be the Republic of Ireland’s fourth largest city, but it comes in first in hospitality. Add in cozy pubs, great food, traditional crafts, and beautiful scenery and it’s easy to see why Galway is... Read More

 Stykkisholmur/Katie Hammel
Stykkisholmur/Katie Hammel

The land of fire and ice is hot right now — so hot that tourists outnumber locals by more than four to one — and it’s becoming more and more difficult to find the solitude this wild and sparsely populated country once offered in abundance. But away from the capital city... Read More

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Bixby Creek Bridge in Big Sur, California
Bixby Creek Bridge/Flickr/torroid

From Washington to California, the west coast of the United States is chock full of road trip opportunities, including journeys that cross state and country borders, meander up and down the coastline, bypass mountains and lakes, and offer endless opportunities to stop the car and enjoy. Here are five... Read More

Hamburg, Germany
Hamburg/Flickr/Tony Webster

The Beatles may be Liverpool’s most famous band, but as any true fan knows, it was the city of Hamburg that shaped them the most. Hamburg is Germany’s second largest city. Twice as big as London and with more canals and bridges than Venice, it’s a maritime city built around... Read More

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Great Tide Pool at Monterey Bay Aquarium in California
Great Tide Pool/Monterey Bay Aquarium

Once the capital of Alta California (under Mexican rule), and the former home of writer John Steinbeck, California’s Monterey is a city full of history. While adults will appreciate Monterey’s charming small-town feel, excellent restaurants, and in-town tasting rooms, there’s plenty for kids to be excited about as well.... Read More