Home & Leisure



Nature, History and Sunshine Welcome Visitors to St. Lucia

By Victor Block

Words printed on T-shirts worn by locals offered a welcoming note shortly after my wife, Fyllis, and I arrived on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia: "Be happy." "Forget your troubles." "Don't worry, just party." On the other hand, the sticker attached to the bumper of an automobile offered a warning about the challenge ...Read more

St. Lucia Is Rich in Color, Culture, Crafts and Community

By Fyllis Hockman

So there I was, at the Sulphur Springs Mud Bath in St. Lucia, being smeared with green mud all over my body: two layers first to exfoliate, then sprinkled with black mud, a guide making designs in stripes and handprints as if my arms, face and chest were a canvas. Allegedly the mineral waters into which we were ...Read more

A Multigenerational Adventure in Costa Rica

By Candyce H. Stapen

He stared at me determinedly, curling his fingers around the railing as I sipped my early morning coffee on the balcony. As soon as I jumped into my room to grab my camera, he pounced on the outdoor table, stuffing my leftover waffle into his mouth and then ripping open sugar packets and sucking in the sweet powder. ...Read more

Yesterday's Prisons Are Today's Destinations

By Victor Block

People entering the red-turreted building with barred windows pass by members of a chain gang dressed in striped shirts and trousers who are swinging long-handled sledgehammers. Once inside, the visitors go through a processing procedure to register them as new inmates at St. John's Old County Jail in St. Augustine, ...Read more

An American in Milano

By Richard Carroll

Standing 6 feet tall in her bare feet, strikingly attractive and with a relaxing glow of self-confidence and the posture and demeanor of a former fashion model, Celia Abernethy is an expat from Long Island, New York, who is enjoying an ongoing love affair with Milano and the city of Lecco, her Lake Como home. The ideal...Read more

Mountains and Villages Welcome Visitors to Lake Como

By Richard Carroll

A cluster of five mountains like ancient trusting friends encompasses Lake Como with tales to tell. They tower to the horizon in a domineering maze of peaks, deep irregular valleys and crusted sheer-sided facings. Deeply sculptured from wind and rain and often cloud-covered, they stand like faithful world-worn ...Read more

A Reset in Cancun

By Athena Lucero

When I arrived in Cancun, Mexico's subtropical paradise on the Yucatan Peninsula, I thought my hotel looked familiar. Sure enough, near the glistening pool overlooking the Caribbean Sea was the very spot where I bought a cloisonne bracelet back in the 1990s while on a business trip with my husband. A lasting memory was ...Read more

Top Travel Destinations May Surprise You

By Victor Block

Google has released its list of the most-searched scenic spots in the United States during 2022, and there are some surprises. For starters, "scenic spots" in Google's definition does not include iconic places such as Vermont's Technicolor White Mountains in fall or the yawning Grand Canyon in Arizona. (More about that ...Read more

Idyllic Ithaca's History and Activities Enchant

By Victor Block

In the morning my wife, Fyllis, and I walked along a path right in town that skirts waterfalls that tumble to the bottom of a deep gorge. Then we strolled in a lovely botanical garden set in an expansive natural environment. Lunch consisted of fresh farm-to-table produce accompanied by cider, for which the destination is ...Read more

Find Gorges, Greenery, Gardens and Goats in Ithaca, New York

By Fyllis Hockman

"Ithaca Is Gorges," the city's motto says, and with 150 waterfalls within a 10-mile radius, it comes by its moniker honestly. A one-third-mile hike uphill -- the Cascadilla Gorge Trail -- was exhilarating not only because of the trek itself but also for the vastness and variety of six different freely flowing cascading ...Read more

Smooth Sailing on a Post-COVID-19 Eastern Canada Cruise

By Sharon Whitley Larsen

As several longtime friends with continuing COVID-19 concerns have been canceling recent cruises, my husband Carl and I (who have not yet had COVID-19 -- knock on wood! -- and are fully boosted) just completed our fourth cruise within a year.

Our friends had second thoughts after hearing horror stories from ...Read more

A Remote Jungle Experience in the Amazon

By Victor Block

Railson is like most 17-year-old boys. He likes to fish and enjoys hanging out with friends. But there are differences. His usual catch is piranha, the razor-toothed residents of South American rivers that can strip the flesh off animals in minutes. His house is a tiny hut built on stilts. And Railson lives in one of the ...Read more

Small Events Yield Big Memories of Morocco

By Glenda Winders

During our recent visit to Morocco my husband and I saw elegant palaces, huge mosques and eye-popping markets in the cities of Rabat, Fes, Marrakech and Casablanca -- each of which had its own distinctive character. But often it was the small events between the major ones -- the roadside stops, the bits of information ...Read more

The Grand Tour Versus Touring Grand in London

By Gay Courter

"Slow down. Slow way down," is the advice I give when asked to help design an itinerary. Typically, people have two weeks in Europe and want to cram in as many countries as possible. Indeed, the distance between England and Germany is about the same as from New York to Cleveland but with vastly different cultures, ...Read more

One Last Day in Casablanca

By Glenda Winders

When my husband and I tell our friends that we visited Casablanca during our recent trip to Morocco, the first question they ask is if we went to Rick's, the bar where much of the action took place in the iconic "Casablanca" movie. It was one of our first questions, too, but our guide, Seddik Aassim, answered a bit ...Read more

A Visit to Marvelous, Mysterious Marrakech

By Glenda Winders

During our recent visit to Morocco my husband and I learned that every city has a distinctive character. There was no chance we'd confuse any two when we got home and looked back on our memories. In Rabat we saw the palace of King Mohammed VI and learned how the constitutional monarchy in this country works. In Fez we ...Read more

Fes or Fez, the Colors Remain the Same

By Glenda Winders

Vast parts of Morocco are covered in the sand of the Sahara and the rocks and foliage of the Atlas Mountains, but its cities are riots of color. This is especially evident in Fes, home of the famous blue pottery and a whole lot more.

And the city's history is just as rich and vibrant. This area in the north inland part...Read more

A Day on Reykjavik's Old Harbor

By Lesley Frederikson

Icelandair has hatched a fantastic marketing scheme. Travelers passing through Iceland on their way to points afar can stop there for up to a week free of charge. On a recent trip to Sweden, my family opted to take advantage of the offer and see what there is to do in this northern nation. With time limited, we ...Read more

Stay Awake Day in Iceland

By Lesley Frederikson

It was meant to be a trip to Sweden to help my husband and his siblings trace their roots, but when my sister-in-law learned that we would connect through Iceland, she suggested we take a few days there to check it out. Why not? It turns out that Icelandair offers a layover in Reykjavik of up to a week without ...Read more

Kitzbuhel: A Tyrolean Alpine Gem

By Margot Black

On our journey to experience the best of the Alps and bucket-list hiking opportunities we visited Kitzbuhel for three glorious days. This stylish mountain resort is located 20 miles south of the German-Austrian border in the western Austrian province of Tyrol. As a member of the distinguished "Best of the Alps" collection...Read more



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