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2014 » April

Globus, Where Natural Flavors Meet Romance in Idaho’s Sun Valley

April 30, 2014 by  

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When I arrived in Sun Valley Idaho for the DENT Conference, I knew I’d have extra time to take in some of Ketchum’s fabulous restaurants, so I started to ask around. While there were a host of favorites depending on who you talked to, Globus, which has been around since 1992, came up regularly as a favorite among locals. After having dinner there, I can certainly understand why. Unique in that it feels like Asian Fusion upon first glance mixed with all things natural, Executive Chef Ryan Stadelman goes a step beyond to make his dishes a little more adventurous. Stadelman, together with Sous Chef T.J. Sonner, prepares seasonal menus using regional products. Some choices on the menu include Lava Lake Lamb Dumplings, Wild Alaskan Salmon with Charred Artichoke Puree and Cider-Soy Marinated Pork Tenderloin. There are also the Globus mainstays such as Crispy Fish, Green Thai Curry and Pad Thai. Oh yeah, and let’s not forget calamari with dipping sauce and lime. Other scrumptious finds include the ranch pork dumplings with leek and parsnip topped with mandarin ponzu and ginger, the braised niman ranch beef and scallion…

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Japan Has Islands Dedicated to Cats & Rabbits – Yes Really!

April 30, 2014 by  

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Japan is world-famous for cuteness, from Hello Kitty, to Pokemon, to the fact that certain characters in its Katakana alphabet (which pre-dates Emoji by a dozen centuries) strongly resemble the emoticons that were to follow. So, it should come as no surprise that the Land of the Rising Sun is home to the cutest islands on the planet. Okunoshima, located off the southwestern coast of Honshu, is bursting at the seams with bouncy bunny rabbits, while the northeastern island of Tashirojima is crawling with cuddly kitty cats. Both of these places have interesting stories to go along with the adorable animals you’ll find on them, so whether you’re looking to travel to Cat Island and Rabbit Island, or simply need some cuteness in your day, I hope you’ll continue reading.

Rabbit Island, Japan (Okunoshima)

After being left emotionally vacant by war paraphernalia in Hiroshima, I was eager to be uplifted, so I hopped (get it?) on a train bound for an island filled with rabbits. Actually, there were a couple more steps in that process, but more on that later – let’s talk about bunnies! Okunoshima is literally crawling (hopping?) with rabbits, but the reason for this is…

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Street Food in Thailand’s Magical Bangkok

April 30, 2014 by  

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When people ask what the most memorable thing we did in Bangkok was, the first thing out of my mouth is, “Drink coffee from a food truck in an alley while wearing PJ’s*!”  Ok, yes, we saw lots of amazing temples, Buddahs drenched in gold, ate at the top of the world’s highest outdoor restaurant…but none of these quite stick out so much as the coffee.  (It’s the little things, no?)  Of course I had to Google this bevvy as soon as we got home to reproduce the lovely brew in our NYC apartment.  If you drink your joe like I do (light and sweet, to a fault), give it a try.    Bangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.com Besides the coffee, the sidewalks of Bangkok are quite the moveable feast.  Everywhere you looked there were vendors selling food (shocking how the entire country stays so small!)…I loaded up on the fresh fruits and ice creams, and let the hubby try the more adventurous meats-on-a-stick.  Bangkok by UsedYorkCity.com
Bangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.comBangkok by UsedYorkCity.com

What’s the most memorable food/drink you’ve experienced during your



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A Trek Up Mount Parsons in South Carolina’s Abbecville County

April 30, 2014 by  

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Lost means little when you’re halfway up a rock face, wedged furtively between towers of stone. Every surface looks the same from this angle; no map promises us stable footing. My partner and I are chasing cairns to the top of Mount Parsons which is located in Abbecville County South Carolina. Whether meaningful trail markers or merely lose rubble, these rock soldiers silently mark our ascent.  “Up there,” Hadyn points toward five pebbles stacked on the shelf above me. How can you be sure? I wonder for a third time. Who left them here before us, and how do I know we share a destination? Trusting these inanimate guides is either a trick for the faithless, or an assurance to the faithful. But then – as all travel writers do when the next blog post is absent and an angry wind threatens to topple a cairn on your forehead – I realize that this man-made monument is symbolic of a much greater universal truth. Mount Parsons, Freycinet National Park, Tasmania Every other peak in the Hazard Range of Freycinet National Park can be reached on a maintained trail, but this one has not been…

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Humane Tourism: A New Way to See the World

April 30, 2014 by  

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Tourism in the 21st century is about more than snapping a few pictures in front of some of the world’s most famous landmarks. Travelers today are a new breed; they are socially conscious with an eye toward making their holiday mean something to more than just themselves, but those around them too. Humane tourists are members of a larger responsible tourism movement which aims to ensure that people traveling around the world and boarding flights from anywhere to Auckland to Zimbabwe actively participate in empowering local communities through tourism. International Connections The humane travel movement is very much focused on developing countries, but developed nations can also offer meaningful experiences too. However, at the heart of the movement is a desire to connect travelers from Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand directly to the local communities that they visit. The idea is that travelers use local businesses in specific destinations directly, which provides an economic advantage to local economies rather than third party travel agents or multi-national hotel chains. This way, the money goes to, and stays with the local community, where it can be

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Santa Fe’s Bike & Brew Festival: Bikes, Beer & Beyond

April 30, 2014 by  

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  newmexico_santa-fe_bikes-beerThree Days of “Bikes, Beer & Beyond” are promised in Santa Fe, New Mexico, May 16 through 18, 2014. Let’s start with the beer. That is, there will be craft beer from New Mexico and Colorado. Then, there’ll be group rides for all ages including road, mountain and cruiser tours — including Tour de Brewer rides, led by a pro rider, that end up at Santa Fe Brewing’s pilsner release party. The beyond? It’s art, music, film, bike-in movies, bowling and grand openings for breweries. (Photo courtesy of Bikes, Beer & Beyond)


The Annual Atlanta Food and Wine Festival Includes a Coastal Pig Out

April 30, 2014 by  

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  georgia_atlanta_f&wThe Atlanta Food & Wine Festival is touted as the only culinary weekend in the country focused exclusively on the South. It takes place May 29 through June 1, 2014, in Midtown, and involves some 250 southern chefs, sommeliers, beverage innovators and pit masters. There are a whole range of classes and events. It starts with a connoisseur’s breakfast and ends with a full afternoon in the tasting tents. Dinners include a coastal pig out. If you have something particular in mind, it’s probably a good idea to go online and get your tickets in advance. (Photo courtesy of Atlanta Food & Wine Festival)


India’s Historical Kingdom Of Chamba Dates Back to A.D.540 to 50

April 29, 2014 by  

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During the course of my travel and research for Best Hill Escapes, I met and interfaced with a number of people across Himachal Pradesh, a state I claim natal association with. Thankfully this is one umbilical cord that has not needed severing as it continues to keep me close to its welcoming fold. Not least for old-timers, and new friends I have made along the way. That they were ever willing to step up, assist and guide me in my professional commitments notwithstanding: I even got them to write. Maalvika Pathania, State Convenor – INTACH. Great granddaughter of Raja Bhuri Singh of Chamba, daughter of Raja Gulab Singh, she happens to come from one of the oldest surviving royalties of Asia, and fondly reminisces here about the legends and history of Chamba. A beaming Nandi at the ancient Chaurasi Temple in Bharmour As a former princely state, Chamba is regarded as one of the most ancient principalities in India and dates back to A.D.540 to 50. It came into being with the fragmentation of India after the collapse of the Gupta Empire. The town of Chamba became the capital of the erstwhile princely…

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