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Product Review: ScotteVest Women’s Travel Trench

Filed under Gear and Gadgets, general, Travel Tips
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I have a bit of a bag problem. I love them a little too much. Clutches, purses, carryalls, duffels, backpacks–it makes no difference. I just adore them. That’s not the real problem, though. The real problem is that my back is pretty weak and I have to manage the needs of two small kids when we travel. That usually means a small backpack in and of itself. So, when my husband got me the ScotteVest Women’s Travel Trench for my birthday, I was beyond thrilled. This looked like the storage solution of my dreams.

 

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The travel trench has 18 pockets. They range from large enough to hold an iPad to tiny compartments for SD cards and a cylindrical one for lip balm. You can also use the discreet clips to run your earbud cords from the MP3 pocket up to your head. My personal favorite is the inner sunglasses pocket with an attached chamois cloth. The jacket is structured to not look lumpy even when fully packed, though I don’t recommend trying to stash disposable diapers and wipes in any of the pockets–there’s just no way to hide that bulk.

My first test of the coat was in Paris for a long weekend, and within 24 hours I nearly got a chance to test their $1,000 anti-pickpocket guarantee. (Being obviously American and juggling small kids on the Parisian subway at rush hour = easy target.) A kind gentleman scared off the pickpocket before a) I knew what was going on, and b) the pickpocket could work out the coat. Safe money, safe info! Winning! It also kept me warm enough on the second test of the coat: Dusseldorf’s Christmas markets. Read More »

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tripwolf Travel Destinations 2014

Filed under general, Travel Tips
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Our readers’ travel priorities for this year have to be quite diverse. The hardcore sports fans among you just made a detour to Sochi, others may have already purchased that ticket to Brazil for the Soccer World Cup. Beyond that, there are a few other cities and countries that should stand in the spotlight this year. Here are tripwolf’s destinations for 2014′s travels, for those in search for nature, culture, history or something original.

 
Havana. Photo: flickr, Rog01.

Havana. Photo: flickr, Rog01.

 

Cuba – an island opening up

Cuba is in flux. After decades of isolation, the socialistic insular state is slowly opening up and carefully allowing some reforms, in order to overcome the crisis. The typical nostalgic character of the island, the distinctive, smoky atmosphere that contributed to Cuba’s recognition value, might slowly change now. At the beginning of 2014 and for the first time since the revolution 60 years ago, Cuban government allowed the import and purchase of new cars. Those legendary oldtimers with their crumbling paint, chugging through Havana, might slowly disappear from Cuba’s appearance. Progress is necessary, but the image of Cuba will transform – enough reason to experience the island’s flair before it sets off to modern times. Read More »

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Travel Blogger of the Month: Josh from GoTravelYourWay

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Josh Cahill does not live an entirely conventional life. Instead of choosing the regular resume of school-degree-job, he decided to go for a whole different education – the university of life itself. For a couple of years he is on the road now, couchsurfing his ways through countries other people wouldn’t even begin to consider as a travel destination.

My main focus is to inspire people to expand their horizons. I want to introduce countries which aren’t as popular as Thailand or France. I travel to countries such as Iran and Afghanistan, and participated in the Arab Spring in Egypt just to give travelers a more detailed insight into those countries. These kinds of undiscovered places deserve more credit, and I try to show the real and beautiful faces behind these amazing places.

 
Josh Cahill from GoTravelYourWay

Josh Cahill from GoTravelYourWay

 

Sushi or pork roast? I’m a meat lover and I would actually go for the pork.
Coffee or Red Bull? I have a passion for either drink but yeah, Red Bull it is!
Wine or beer? Oh I can’t deny my German-Czech heritage so definitely beer!
Suitcase or backpack? Backpack!
Night train or night bus? I love night trains and I do not enjoy bus rides at all.
Sleeping bag or bedding? I don’t care, I love everything related to sleep.
Window or aisle? If it’s a new destination then of course the window seat!
Diarrhea or constipation? Diarrhea so I get heaps of time to reply to my emails while enjoying the toilet :D
Malarone or malaria? I once participated in a medical research study for Malaria treatment so I guess it made me immune to it hehe…
Hops or grass? Hops because grass just makes me sleepy. The one you can lay on of course, I mean…

Since when does you blogpost exist? Any post you recommend to our readers? My blog is only seven months old. I have been traveling for a few years but I’ve never really made my stories public before. My friends always told me to set up a website and share all those unique stories. I can highly recommend my story about getting lost in Iran. Read More »

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Paris for lovers and freaks – unusual romance tips for the City of Love

Filed under Deals, France, general, Travel Apps, Travel Tips, Valentine's Day
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Today we take you on a romantic trip to Paris. Because it’s Valentine’s Day, the Paris Travel Guide is available at 60% off for three days now. Have fun!

 

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Some things should never change. Since time immemorial, the mighty metropolis on the Seine has attracted lovers and romantics. The film industry has rented out its street corners, promenades, and bistros as the obligatory backdrop for just about any romantic feature film. But how did Paris, bursting with magnificent buildings but also very hectic, become the world’s capital of love?

 
Photo: flickr, Vassil Tzvetanov

Photo: flickr, Vassil Tzvetanov

 

It isn’t easy to come up with a historically grounded explanation. The pompous/romantic Parisian cityscape certainly played a role. Promenades, parks, and squares that once served the glorification and relaxation of the king have, since the end of the monarchy, induced “normal people” to stroll and whisper sweet nothings to one another. Cultural institutions such as the Opera or the cinema, which have always trafficked in love stories, are firmly rooted on the Seine. After all, it was the Lumière brothers in the Paris of 1895 who staged one of the world’s first film screenings for a public audience. Read More »

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Best European Romantic Holiday Destinations

Filed under Barcelona, Culture, France, general, Spain
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With Valentine’s Day on the 14th, February is the month of love when many couples are planning candle-lit dinners, shopping for unique heart-felt gifts and writing out poetry in pink and red cards.

 
Eiffel Tower at Night taken by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/agawdilim/">agaw.dilim</a>

Eiffel Tower at Night taken by agaw.dilim

 

If you’d like to do something extraordinary this year, consider treating your special someone to a romantic getaway. To inspire you, here’s our list of the best places in Europe for couples to get away from it all and spend some time together.

Read More »

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Dining in Dusseldorf

Filed under Food Culture, general, Germany
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Just before Christmas, we were able to duck out of England for a long weekend in Dusseldorf, Germany. As a tourist destination, Dusseldorf doesn’t get a lot of notice next to Germany’s bigger names like Berlin or Munich. We chose it because it was a discount airline destination from our closest airport, and we’re glad we did. It was a cheerful and pleasant city–especially decorated for the Christmas markets–and we managed to slip away from the kids for an evening of proper German dining at Hausbrauerei Zum Schlüssel.

Drinks in Dusseldorf. Photo by deannanmc.

Drinks in Dusseldorf. Photo by deannanmc.

According to my husband, who has a bit of German heritage, mustard is the key to German food. Specifically, it’s beneficial to eat the rich breads and carbs with mustard as it helps speed digestion. This helps with that food-baby bulge that normally leaves you gasping for your belt buckle after a big meal. In that spirit, I started with the mustard cream soup. It was spicy and smooth, perfect for the house brew and the great slabs of brown bread that came with our meal.
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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

Read More »

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Where to Ring in the New Year in Dubai

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Dubai, UAE is known for being one of the biggest and best party places in the world, where A-list celebrities and other famous faces come together for celeb gossip, indulgent cocktails and fantastic music as they dance the night away. With this in mind, it’s only natural that come the New Year’s Eve, Dubai is the place to see and be seen.

Atlantis the Palm, Dubai taken by <a href="http://www.hotelscombined.com/">HotelsCombined</a>

Atlantis the Palm, Dubai taken by HotelsCombined

Whether you’re planning on visiting Dubai over the festive season or you just want to know about the hottest clubs in the cosmopolitan city, take a look at our list of the best places to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Dubai.

Read More »

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Our holiday present to you: one free guide on December 25!

Filed under general, Mobile, Travel Tips
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Hello tripwolves,

what a year! In 2013 we collected countless travel tips and stories, we improved the tripwolf app continuously, we passed the threshold of 5 million app downloads, and we made incredible progress in our tripwolf iPad app.

 
Inspiration for 2014's travels

Inspiration for 2014′s travels

 

Now the year is approaching its end. It’s a contemplative time when even restless globetrotters return home for the holidays. In our minds we’re already forming travel plans for 2014 and letting the travel itch and wanderlust and images of foreign lands assert themselves.

It’s all reason enough for us to offer you a nice little present: On December 25, all tripwolf app users can download a free guide. From the more than 500 destinations, you can choose the guide you like the best — this offer is of course valid for all Android and iOS users among you!

We wish you a happy holidays and a Happy New Year — see you in 2014, as lively as ever!

Your tripwolf Team

 

StoreLogoHere you can download the tripwolf app for iPhone and iPad (in-app guides). Including offline maps, Augmented Reality viewer and free updates.
Also available for Android!

 
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Crossing the Atlas Mountains by Bus: A Survival Guide

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During our adventure in Morocco, we wanted to get out of Marrakech. Not wanting to fuss about with the responsibility of doing our own driving, we found a reputable-looking tour website and booked four seats in a commercial passenger van to travel from Marrakech to Ouarzazate. You’ve seen Ouarzazate; numerous movies and television shows that feature desert scenes are filmed there (including Lawrence of Arabia). On the way we were to stop at Ait Benhaddou, a fortified hillside city and UNESCO site. But before you arrive at either of these gorgeous locales, you must first cross over the Atlas Mountains.

The mountain road. Photo by DeannaNMC.

The mountain road. Photo by DeannaNMC.

The tour website we used to book said that the road from Marrakech to Ouarzazate would take roughly 2.5 hours, which was corroborated by a Google Maps cross-reference. This doesn’t include the following: an hour where you’re picked up from your hotel and brought to a central spot, where you and your fellow passengers are shuffled around a little while the drivers decide who will take which group; any sort of traffic delays (though your driver will careen around those like nothing); herds of livestock and small mountain villages with traffic congestion that seem to disappear as quickly as they arose; and finally, it does not include breaks for you or the other people in your bus to vomit. The final tally clocked us at just under five hours each way–and the way back was in the pitch-black of night. There are few lights on the mountain road. Read More »

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