Top 4 Reasons to Visit Colombia During Christmas & New Year’s

With its colonial architecture, stunning landscapes, rare exotic fruits & fruit juices,  great art museums, colorful resort towns, numerous extreme sports options, and very friendly locals, Colombia makes for a  great well-rounded trip any time of year. But, during the winter holidays of Christmas & New Years, a visit to Colombia is even more extra… Continue Reading Top 4 Reasons to Visit Colombia During Christmas & New Year’s

The Caribbean Islands: A Vacation Full of Adventure and Local Culture

When some people think of traveling the Caribbean islands, they think of yachts, resorts, and beaches; however a winter Caribbean vacation doesn’t have to mean forfeiting adventure for the warmth of the tropics. In 2009, I was invited to take a cruise through the Southern Caribbean. At first, I was hesitant.  My only understanding of… Continue Reading The Caribbean Islands: A Vacation Full of Adventure and Local Culture

Off the Map Travels’ Founder, Sara Nakash, interviewed by Global Goose.

Did you just happen upon the Off the Map Travels website? Or are you a long time reader of our  blog?  Or maybe you’ve used one of  our services before? Either way,  If you want to learn more about  the Founder of Off the Map Travels,  such as just how Sara got started traveling, why… Continue Reading Off the Map Travels’ Founder, Sara Nakash, interviewed by Global Goose.

Mixed up in Mostar

You may remember that recently, I wrote about different types of places you can stay during your travels if you want to branch out from the usual hotel or hostel-types of accommodations. One of the types of accommodations that I mentioned is what’s referred to as a “sobe” or “zimmer,” throughout Europe (especially the Balkans).… Continue Reading Mixed up in Mostar

4 Budget Hotel and Hostel Alternatives That Promote Local Culture Immersion

Staying somewhere other than a hotel or a hostel can be an adventure of its own. It can certainly give you a cultural experience that a hotel or hostel may not provide. It may also give you a kind of personal touch that other hotel-staying travelers won’t get. Let’s look at a few alternatives to typical hotel/hostel travel lodging. Continue Reading 4 Budget Hotel and Hostel Alternatives That Promote Local Culture Immersion

Skip the Souvenir Shops! 5 gift ideas with real meaning and function

So your vacation is coming to an end, and it’s shopping day. It’s time to spend hours looking for the perfect gift for your friends and family, or a souvenir for yourself to keep the memory alive. Skip the souvenir shops filled with key chains, t-shirts, postcards, mugs and all the other tacky gifts that will end up forgotten, left in some closet somewhere. Instead, opt for souvenirs and gifts that have real meaning and function and will constantly conjure memories of your trip!

Here are some of my favorite items to bring back from my travels: Continue Reading Skip the Souvenir Shops! 5 gift ideas with real meaning and function

A Multi-Cultural Birthday Abroad

Different travelers have different preferences about how they experience the different cultures they encounter. Some travelers want to stay in luxury accommodations and experience the culture through exhibits, shopping, and delectable cuisine. Other travelers want to abide among the “common” people, eating their foods and experiencing their daily lives. While there are merits and drawbacks for each, one of my most treasured birthdays was spending the day among a Maori tribe of New Zealand. Continue Reading A Multi-Cultural Birthday Abroad

A Guide to Making the Best of Flight Cancellations

As I eagerly awaited the bus to take me to the airport, the rain started pouring. I didn’t think twice, though. A little rain wouldn’t cause a flight to be cancelled, right? Wrong! I spent 3 hours at the airport before I realized my flight had been cancelled for at least an hour. It took some patience and a few extra dollars, but I was still able to make it to Myrtle Beach with extra time before the next leg of the trip.

Here are some tips for handling flight cancellations and some lessons I’ve learned along the way: Continue Reading A Guide to Making the Best of Flight Cancellations

Free to Fly: Facing Your Phobias Through Travel

One of the exhilarating benefits of travel is that it can give you opportunities to stretch your limits and grow as a person, which you will never have by
staying home. One of those opportunities is the opportunity to face and overcome your fears. Continue Reading Free to Fly: Facing Your Phobias Through Travel

The Case of the Stolen Phone: The Importance of Being Alert While Traveling

One of the most important things to remember when you are traveling is that it is crucial to remain alert and aware of your surroundings. Admittedly, this is most difficult when you are traveling. Continue Reading The Case of the Stolen Phone: The Importance of Being Alert While Traveling