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tripwolf Blogger of the Month: Bucket List Journey

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Bucket List Journey is a travel blog where the main focus is about traveling the world in search of bucket list worthy experiences. These ventures could be anything from eating strange traditional foods to visiting unique attractions to participating in daring adventures.

Elephants in Thailand

“After getting a handle on a serious case of anxiety, I wanted to live a life filled with excitement and adventure to make up for all that I had missed, so I began living out an advantageous bucket list. The blog was started almost five years ago as a way to record my bucket list journey. It has since evolved from a “hey, look what I did” account into traveling all over the world searching for bucket list worthy ideas that my readers can add to their own lists. My goal is to live a life I love while inspiring others to do the same.”  – Annette of Bucket List Journey

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A Travel Tip for Seekers: The Ashram

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An ashram is a spiritual sanctuary.  The word ashram is of sanskrit origin, modified to modern Hindi.  An ashram was originally a place where a holy man, teacher or guru lived, and students or followers who came from afar to study with them, would eventually end up needing a place to crash.  A community would spring up around each ashram, with its inhabitants associated with the spiritual teacher in some way.  Cleanliness, even a starkness or decor, is principle, as those who came were not interested in worldly things.

Some rights reserved by ruffin_ready. Flickr.

Some rights reserved by ruffin_ready. Flickr.

As religion and spirituality shift, change and spread around the world, the ashram is changing as well.  Many masters passed, leaving no one to take their place as the head of the ashram.  Scandal may have left communities lost for guidance.  Eastern philosophies headed west, and western seekers were more easily able to head east.  The ashram had to change as well, and now they are kept open by the remaining followers by offering cheap accommodation, yoga or meditation classes, and meals.

It’s a tough situation – those left to manage the ashrams, had never wanted to become proprietors of a business.  They would often rather be studying or practicing.   I have visited many different ashrams in the east and west, and I want to share some tips with budget travelers, who may find their way to an ashram for one reason or another.  It’s important to know that it’s not just a cheap place to stay.  Many arrive or live in an ashram because they are seeking a haven, a place to study, to practice, to contemplate life.  Here are a few tips to help you understand how you can be respectful, and get the most from your visit.  An ashram is NOT a youth hostel, so if you’re looking for a party, stay elsewhere.

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Fall Foliage Road Trip through New England: Maine, New Hamshire, and Vermont

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This article is dedicated to you by motoring.com.au. Choosing the right car for a road trip is essential.


Nothing says New England like Autumn.   Mid September to Mid October is the leaf-peeping season, when the fall foliage is perfect and bright.  Tens of thousands of people jump on bus tours from the Southern US to catch a glimpse of the hills burning bright red, orange and yellow. Though the best way to see this North American region in all it’s splendor is by road trip through Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.  Driving across all three can be in a weekend, or make a romantic week of it - wine-tasting, gourmet food-hunting and taking scenic hikes.

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3 Alternatives to Halloween

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There’s a lot to celebrate in Autumn. Some of the festivals are regional, like local harvest and wine festivals, others are historical, like Columbus Day and Thanksgiving, and others seem to span regions and culture as well as religion – like Halloween.  This holiday has its roots in a few different regional pagan celebrations, and the season also brings other celebrations and festivals honoring those no longer with us – whether a sweet celebration of ancestors, or a time to wander between worlds.

These three featured festivals are celebrated in other cultures with a similar reverence for that other world.

 
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“Trick or treat” is a slogan often in this country for Halloween . Photo: flickr

 

1 Dia de los Muertos, Mexico

The beautiful painted skulls from Mexico have been adopted more regularly as Halloween decorations here in the US and Europe, but they originally represented deceased ancestors. The “Day of the Dead” is celebrated in Latin America between October 31 and All Souls Day (2 November 2). It is a colorful festival in honor of the dead and is celebrated differently depending on your religion. According to the traditional belief the ancestors come to the land of the living at the end of the harvest season from the other world to visit, communicate, and be celebrated by the living. Even Spanish missionaries who wanted to abolish this practice have failed. Instead this just turned into the Christian holidays of All Saints and All Souls Days. Read More »

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Travel Blogger of the Month: The Travel Tart

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I was glad to catch Anthony who runs TheTravelTart.com – a travel writer who shares the funny, offbeat, and ‘downright weird’ (his words!) aspects of world travel today. It’s refreshing to find a successful travel blog that doesn’t take itself too seriously!

“I fell into travel blogging by accident. I met some other bloggers in a different niche and I noticed the great opportunities they were getting, so I decided to have a crack at it! No regrets, even though running a website drives me insane sometimes!”
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Road Trip Australia: Ocean, Wine and Wilderness

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This article is dedicated to you from carsales.com.au


One of the best ways to see and experience a country is by car.  A road trip is idyllic, and also very practical.  It’s a go-at-your-own-pace way to tour, and since there’s so much to see in Victoria, Australia, you’ll want to take your time!

Here’s a trip itinerary that can take you from Melbourne south though the Yarra Valley, to Philip Island and the Mornington Peninsula.  The trip is under 600 km, or less than 400 miles, and you could take a week or only a few days, depending on your agenda.

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Searching for the Best Ice Cream in the World

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It is hot, damn hot, in North America and Europe at this time of year. In some places finding a way to cool off is not only a matter of comfort, but it’s life and death!  And if staying cool is life or death….then eat ice cream or die…right?

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Life’s too short to eat bad ice cream!

And eat good ice cream.  We’ve been drooling over memories of the most creamiest, coolest, smoothest icy treats from our travels around the world, here in the tripwolf office this summer.  So here you go – we just had to share our picks for the best ice cream in the world.

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tripwolf Blogger of the Month: Bright Continent

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I found Anton and Bright Continent on a web site featuring underrated travel blogs.  If you’re looking for something pure and positive, if you’re perhaps sick of snarky travel writing, Anton’s blog is all heart.  Appropriately, the blogging started in 2010 when he went on a photographic assignment for Operation Smile in Madagascar.  “It was an incredibly positive atmosphere I wanted to share it with people so I formed Bright Continent and began writing and posting images. It grew from there. Ultimately I would like to communicate that Africa can change people, that we can learn more from this continent than we think.”

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“I try to give viewers an honest impression of Africa and a sense of the wonder of traveling here. Most of all it’s about the spirit of the people I meet. I travel in a variety of ways – motorcycling, driving, hitchhiking, public transport and so on, and I aim to get among people and feel the pulse of things.”

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tripwolf Travel Blogger of the Month: BesuDesu Abroad

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We feature many bloggers who’ve quit their 9 – 5 to travel the world.  Besudesu Abroad is for those of us who can’t or won’t shun our careers, but who won’t compromise our dreams of traveling either.  Originally from Chicago, Beth got her first true taste of travel when she studied abroad in Japan during her final year of university.  She fell in love with Asia, so she found herself moving right back upon graduating to teach English full-time in Hong Kong.  She’s out to prove that adventurous and practical are not at odds.

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Maine Island Vacation Made Easy

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If you have yet to plan your summer getaway, you’re probably looking for something quick and easy, and I’ve got a plan for you. It’s summer, so you’re heading to the beach, right? Traffic, crowds, yelling children, busy boardwalks, and shopping….sound like hell to you? Many of Maine‘s beach towns are overrun in July and August, but here are tips to truly find a relaxing spot on this rugged (yet relaxed) coast.  Go it island style.

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Portland and Casco Bay

Portland is Maine’s largest city, aptly named, as it’s still a large, working port.  Portland itself has great restaurants – some of the freshest seafood in the world is found literally moments off shore – and a quaint shopping disctrict called the “Old Port.”  There are also quite a few craft breweries.  Portland is worth a visit, but if you’re looking for relaxation, and a hideaway, head to the water.  Casco Bay surrounds Portland, containing what are known as the Calendar Islands – because there were once considered to be 365 of them. Read More »

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