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Welcome Gutsy Travelers!

Join us, a National Geographic author and freelance writers for tips and inspiration to journey around the world. 

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A road trip through our national parks in Utah and Arizona

When the walls feel like they are closing in and I need a boost again, I return to the wide-open spaces of the southwest and the healing peacefulness of the canyons for a road trip in Utah and Arizona.                 Nothing can put life into perceptive better than...

Car rentals during the pandemic. What you need to know.

This is what you need to know about car rentals during the pandemic By Christopher Elliott  Alex Davis didn't know what to expect when she rented a car from Alamo in Chicago recently. Agents in hazmat suits? Antibacterial car washes, maybe? Perhaps an extra cleaning...

How do you know if your hotel room is really clean?

How do you know if your hotel room is really clean? By Christopher Elliotts It's almost impossible to find a hotel that hasn't introduced a new sanitation program, promising its rooms are squeaky clean and coronavirus-free. But how do you know if your hotel room is...

How do you practice social distancing on a plane?

How do you practice social distancing on a plane? Many airlines are not blocking the middle seat.  By Christopher Elliott When Robyn Wilkov boarded a recent flight from New York to Dallas, she was surprised to find a masked passenger in the middle seat next to hers....

Go beyond the vineyards for the Sonoma County you may not know

When you think of Sonoma County, images come to mind of vineyards and vine-covered hillsides, elegant tasting rooms and fabulous dinners at intimate restaurants. Beyond the famous food, wine and vineyards, Sonoma offers plenty more to discover. Go West Beyond the...

Paso Robles. Worth the detour between San Francisco and Los Angeles

Paso Robles, mid-way between San Francisco and Los Angles, is known for wine tasting and summer concerts. Recently  my husband and I drove 3 ½ hours south of San Francisco to visit the famous wineries. An added bonus was the temporary outdoor exhibition of British...

Wolves of Yellowstone National Park are a hot attraction

We fed the bears marshmallows from the back seat of the family car when I was kid. Cranking down the window a few inches we’d toss leftover peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and sweets to the fat bears who waddled from car to car along the road into Old Faithful....

Take Me To Telluride

Think Telluride is all about powder skiing and film festivals? Thing again! This is the place where Butch Cassidy began his bank-robbing career at the San Miguel Valley Bank on June 24, 1889.  After the heist, Cassidy and two buddies mounted their steeds, shot their...

San Francisco’s National Park at the Golden Gate Bridge

With the famous span of the Golden Gate Bridge as the backdrop, The Presidio is San Francisco’s great escape. This huge National Park is nestled along the Bay and Crissy Field extending through 262 acres of historic forests to the cliffs above the Pacific Ocean. The...

Travel safety for women

  Travel safety for woman is the number one concern for students, seniors and world adventurers. I've written chapters in my books and spoken at universities and at travel shows about "how to stay safe and travel the world". Here are ways to be prepared and avoid...

Bucket List Trip: Cruise Australia and New Zealand

  Australia and New Zealand kept calling our names, but let’s face it, they are a long way from home. I was a little overwhelmed by the complicated planning aspects of trying to fly around the huge continent of Australia and how to navigate both islands in New...

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France. Impressionist Painters in Normandy.

  Normandy attracts anyone who loves the impressionists and their paintings, as well as food lovers.  Last spring  I jumped at a chance to go to Normandy to follow in the footsteps of the Impressionist Painters. I criss-crossed the countryside from Giverny to the...

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Tips for Pet Travel to Monterey, Carmel and Big Sur

Tips for Pet Travel Road Trips to Carmel, Monterey and beyond. When I was young our pets stayed in the kitchen. Our poodles and terriers always knew their place–at the bottom of the family hierarchy. Over the years pet trends have changed significantly as Fido has...

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Millennials. Safety Tips.

Safety Tips for millennials going abroad.  Including college students and professionals traveling for business. Bar Tips - Buddy System Go with a buddy. It's better to have two sets of eyes to watch for bad situations. Don't leave without your buddy. Get smart about...

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Travel safety for women

  Travel safety for woman is the number one concern for students, seniors and world adventurers. I've written chapters in my books and spoken at universities and at travel shows about "how to stay safe and travel the world". Here are ways to be prepared and avoid...

read more

Packing for a Cruise

Packing the right clothes for a cruise has always been a big challenge. I’ve packed for more than a few cruises by now but it is getting even harder because cruise companies are offering more activities that need a greater mix of formal, informal and casual evenings...

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Travel Tips for Students

As students get ready to travel, there is more to consider than what bathing suit to pack.   Here are some useful tips to prepare you for a seamless vacation. Lock it up Many hotels, condos, or hostels don’t have “in-room safes”.  Put your passport, cell phone,...

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Lost luggage. What to do? The best and worst airlines.

Lost luggage is the fear of every traveler. An interesting study came across my screen this week with research about lost luggage who has the worst record and tips (scroll down) what to do if you loose your luggage. See details about the research at the end of the...

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Discover France’s Secret Villages

Walking in the Maritime Alps leads to the Mediterranean Coast Rocky, snowcapped Alps tumble down to the dazzling waters of the Mediterranean coast along the French and Italian border. My love of France and its sleepy villages fueled my choice to hike through this...

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Travel Rip-offs and How to Avoid Them

Let me share my travel tips of how to avoid theft, frauds and over-paying. 1.) Avoid baggage fees. Depending upon the airline you can pay $15 to $75 for the first checked bag, and more for overweight bags. When possible, pack lightly enough to carry-on one bag or...

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