Shermanstravel Blog

Sports And Adventure

yosemite - colors 1The United States maintains more than 6,000 federally-protected sites, spanning over 1 million square miles and totaling roughly 27 percent of the U.S.’s entire land area. Attracting millions of visitors worldwide, the U.S. National Park System offers tourists incredible variety, from the lush Everglades, to windswept Death Valley, to the grandaddy of national parks, the Grand Canyon.

Traveling to each, individually and together, can cost a fortune, so if you’re planning a road-trip, you can save a ton with a national parks pass, or consider showing up on one of the many free-admission days. For those still wondering where, when, and how to visit, here is our guide on planning a trip to the country’s top six national parks in 2014. Read more

JohnMuirWayIn a year that is filled with milestones – from the Independence Referendum, to the Commonwealth Games, to the year-long festival called The Homecoming – it’s tough to pick just one reason to visit Scotland in 2014. For outdoor enthusiasts, however, April 21 is possibly the date to save. On that date, the 134-mile-long John Muir Way, named for the Scottish conservationist, will officially open. The walking trail (which takes seven-to-10 days to walk, or four-to-five days by bicycle) runs coast-to-coast from Muir’s hometown of Dunbar to Loch Lomond National Park, passing by castles, hills, and canals along the way. It ends at the waters of the River Clyde at Helensburgh. To celebrate, the John Muir Festival, from April 17-26, will host events and public performances along the trail. Read more

Chesapeake Bay

Depending on the size (or existence) of the check coming your way post taxes, you could be looking at extra vacation money. And if you’re anything like us, money like that burns a deep, deep hole in your pocket. We thought you’d appreciate a few tips on ways to blow your tax refund on a trip in late April/May. Consider it a reward for getting them done in the first place. Read more

Machu PicchuEven if you’ve never been to South America, or left your hometown, you’ve probably heard of Machu Picchu: it was voted one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and has been declared a Peruvian Historical Sanctuary. Even though visiting this historic Inca site site requires a certain degree of planning, it turns out that it’s entirely possible to visit Machu Picchu in a single day. Here’s how to do it… Read more

620x400_WikimediaCommons_AviemoreSkiLiftThink Scotland, and whisky, bagpipes, men in kilts, or perhaps fisherman’s waders come to mind. But now you can add skiing and snowboarding to the mix. Up in the Scottish Highlands, the Cairngorms are the U.K.’s highest and snowiest ski-friendly mountains – and thus they’re home to the country’s most popular ski spot.

Easter is a great time to visit the excellent Ski and Snowboard School, which is located on the mountain, and receives plenty of snow. Lessons start at $146, which includes four hours of lessons for adults, equipment rental, and a ski pass, plus a trip up and down the slope on Scotland’s only funicular railway. The resort area is ideal for beginners, while still offering enough of a challenge to keep more experienced downhillers busy. Here are some tips for putting together your own Scottish skiing getaway… Read more

indy-indianapolis-canal-walk-lavengood-photography-620For a lot of us, Indianapolis is that place where the big race happens every year. But in recent years, much like its neighbors, Indy has ramped up its efforts to bring the surrounding nature into the city, creating a lusher, more inviting urban stretch. From dedicated walking and biking trails, to cool new exhibits, there’s more to look forward to than sporting events in this Midwestern city. Here are our picks… Read more

CloistersImagine a New York City speckled with greenery, forests, and maybe even some 15th century medieval architecture. That New York City exists, sort of. For those of you planning an extended stay in the Big Apple, the urge might arise to escape the hustle and bustle for a day. Here are five NYC day-cations to tack on to your vacation… Read more

Iditarod Race DogsThe Iditarod is known as the “Last Great Race,” an incredible feat of endurance that covers 1,000 miles of rough terrain through blizzards and whiteouts – and features the most adorable athletes of any sport. Seeing this incredible race in person can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. If you’re thinking about heading north to the Alaskan wilderness for this once-in-a-lifetime event, here are some planning tips and tricks…  Read more

ExcursionCruise port excursions have come a long way since the olden days of basic motor coach tours to local sites. Today, they’re exciting and adventurous, and designed to immerse cruise guests into local culture.

The newest excursions focus on “wow factor,” and are aimed at luring first-time cruisers while also holding the interest of repeat travelers who’ve done it all. Moreover, all cruise lines are now courting younger travelers who seek more dynamic vacations than their parents and grandparents did. Also, the demand for cultural experiences has increased, and cruise lines are obliging.

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Powderhorn MountainSkiing can be glamorous and exciting, and unfortunately, expensive. But as the season wears on, discounts start to pop up for both lodging and lift tickets. Since it looks like most of the major ski destinations will have snow through the beginning of April, here are a few deals to consider for a March trip. This is only a selection, so if your favorite destination isn’t listed, be sure to dig deeper at your favorite area or mountain to see what’s on offer.

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South AfricaIn recent seasons, ABC’s long-running series The Bachelor and The Bachelorette have quietly turned their attention from catfights, crying, and ill-fated proposals to routinely showcasing some of the world’s most beautiful destinations. Of course, there’s still over-the-top drama, but more and more, it’s set against a backdrop of bucket-list adventures in far-flung locales. So far this season, Juan Pablo and company have bungee-jumped off a bridge in Los Angeles and eaten insects at a food cart in Seoul, South Korea.

But you don’t have to have a harem of romantic hopefuls in tow – or ABC’s travel budget, for that matter – to enjoy some of these experiences. Here are a few ways travelers can enjoy some of the show’s around-the-world adventures. Who knows? It just might be your Most. Dramatic. Trip. Ever.

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AmagerWe travelers jump at any chance to explore nature, whether it’s a sweaty hike through the Amazon, or maybe an afternoon spent flower-gazing on a mountain in South Africa. This is what travel is all about: seeing all the beauty the world has to offer. But what about sites that weren’t created by nature? Sometimes, they can be just as impressive. Below, we’ve rounded up eight man-made attractions around the world that you can visit for free… Read more

Quebec Winter CarnivalThere are cities where winter is something to be endured, where the cold months from November to March reduce citizens to shut-ins. Québec City is not one of those places. In Quèbec, the winter is celebrated. In fact, it may be one of the best times of the year to visit. Here’s how to enjoy it … Read more

620x400_UnCruiseSafariVoyagerDoes the thought of taking a cruise conjure up images of endless buffet lines, water slides and sequined dresses? I’ve been there, done that. Way back in 2001, my then-boyfriend and I embarked on one of those notoriously inexpensive cruises that sail around the Caribbean. After going broke on booze, busting a zipper at the buffet, and being forced to participate in a limbo, we vowed never to sail the seas again.

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BorneoBorneo, the world’s third largest island, has seen significant portions of its rainforest cut down by logging companies over the years. Still, it remains one of the premier jungles in Southeast Asia, offering adventure travelers the sort of inspiring jaunts that are more typical in South America or Africa. Borneo is home to the endangered Bornean orangutan, the world’s largest flower, and is shared between three countries: Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brunei.

We hunkered down on the Malaysia side for two weeks, using Kuching as a home base for exploration. While the upfront cost to get there hurts (approximately $1,400 round-trip from New York City), visitors will be pleased with how cheaply they can feed and entertain themselves once on the ground. Here’s a breakdown of where you’ll spend – and where you won’t – next time you plan a trip to this southeast Asian island. Read more

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