How to Become a Matador

October 12, 2010 by  
Filed under Travel News

On a trip to Spain, I remember several cities with statues honoring bullfighters. Locals told stories of the heroic Spanish matadors. Watching the bullfighters in the toreo de salón is a popular tourist attraction though some object to it calling the spectacle barbaric. If you find the agility and skill of the torero to be alluring, it’s possible to take an intensive training course that will teach the fundamentals of becoming a matador. That includes fearlessness, graceful movements, and improved coordination.
matador-bullfighter-spain Matador in Spain © Paul Hartrick

Two options for training to become a bullfighter are the Dennis C. Borba Bullfighting School and the California Academy of Tauromaquia. The former offers workshops lasting three days. Be aware that the class doesn’t come without risk. The WSJ reported that one man’s cape got caught under the animal’s hoof knocking him to the floor. Though the trainer, Dennis Borba was quick to intercede. As Ernest Hemingway wrote in Death in the Afternoon, “bullfighting is the only art in which the artist is in danger of death.” The latter choice has intensive classes located in San Diego, California and Mexico. The courses are completely bloodless and focus only on the moves and traditions of the bullfighters.
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing an article or photograph for publication.

 

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Free Rooms to Honor Veterans

October 6, 2010 by  
Filed under Travel News

Veterans Day is federal holiday that is observed on November 11 in the United States. Along with Memorial Day, which pays respect to soldiers who died in military service, it honors veterans of the armed forces. The specific date was selected in accordance with the end of the First World War and President Woodrow Wilson’s declaration of remembrance.
veterans-memorial-washington-dc Veterans Memorial, Washington DC © Gennaro Salamone

To pay respect to those who fought, a group of over 400 independently owned bed and breakfast inns are providing free stays for veterans on the night of November 10. A valid military or Veterans Administration ID is required for each reservation. To find a participating inn, view the list on B&Bs For Vets. Inn keepers who want to be listed for the promotion can contact Kathleen Panek of the Gillum House Bed & Breakfast in West Virginia. To qualify, at least one room must be provided for the night of November 10, free of charge, to any active or retired military person with appropriate ID.
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing an article or photograph for publication.

 

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Cambodia Protects Tourist Sites

March 10, 2010 by  
Filed under Travel News

The Cambodian Cabinet voted to preserve 14 tourist sites that are connected to the Khmer Rouge regime. Khmer Rouge, led by Pol Pot, was a totalitarian organization that ruled Cambodia from 1975-1979. The 14 sites that are being protected from illegal encroachment by locals will provide travelers with an opportunity to learn about the 1.5 million Cambodians who were murdered and tortured during that period. The targets of the regime were often city-dwellers who were educated or considered to be part of the intellectual elite.
tuol-sleng.jpg Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, Cambodia © Gennaro Salamone

Although beautiful Angkor Wat (see photos) is rightfully the most popular tourist destination for travelers headed to Cambodia, sites connected to the Khmer Rouge genocide are also important to visit. While The Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum are already developed for tourism, newly developed stops in towns such as Anlong Veng (final resting place of Pol Pot) are welcomed additions.
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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Most Conversational Travel Posts of 2009

December 30, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

As 2010 approaches, Enduring Wanderlust has collected its most conversational travel posts for 2009. Feel free to re-visit these articles and offer your thoughts about their content in the comment section. Have a happy and healthy new year.

1. 8 Best Chocolate Shops in NYC

New York City has some of the best chocolate shops in the world. This post offers eight of the best shops.

2. Angkor Wat Through the Lens

Angkor Wat is one of the most beautiful sites in Southeast Asia. It’s one of the primary reasons travelers have Cambodia on their itinerary. Enjoy this look at the site through photographs.
jacques-torres-chocolate.jpgChocolate Shop: Jacques Torres, New York City

3. Best Pizza In NYC

New York City is the home of lots of great pizzerias. It’s a constant debate about which spot has the best pies in the city. See if you agree with the selection.

4. Cusco, Peru: A Photographic Journey

Many travelers journey to Cusco in order to visit Machu Picchu, but the city itself is one of the most enjoyable in South America. This post is a look at the city through photos.

5. Things to Do in NYC for Free

New York City is expensive for tourists and locals. This post offers some of the attractions that are available for no charge. Yep, free things to do in NYC.
mcsorleys-bar.jpg Irish Pub: McSorley’s, New York City

6. 9 Top Cities, 9 Top Irish Pubs

Irish pubs are plentiful throughout the world. These are some of the more authentic and enjoyable spots to enjoy a libation.

7. Historic Estates of U.S. Presidents

American presidents have some of the nicest homes to visit. Most offer an educational experience along with a step back into history. The estates in Virginia are particularly impressive.

8. More Women Traveling Solo

Women surpassed men in terms of total solo travelers. This post looks at the statistics and reasons for the recent development.
monticello-jeffersons-house.jpg Presidential Home: Monticello, Virginia

9. Recycled Masterpiece: Chandigarh’s Rock Garden

Chandigarh’s [India] Rock Garden is a fascinating garden created from recycled household materials.

10a. Lao Fishermen on the Mekong

This post takes readers into the life of a couple of fisherman from Laos. The photos capture their day on the Mekong River.

10b. 6 Steps to a Lucky Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year is a time for a rebirth. This post looks at the steps taken for those looking to have a lucky new year. Chinese New Year falls on February 14, 2010. 2010 is the Year of the Tiger.
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gennaroeditor.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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United Passes Fees to Agents

June 30, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

United Airlines has decided to pass on credit-card fees to travel agents when customers book their trips with said agents. The airline threated a $75 per ticket penalty to agents who charge the fee to United’s account. Increasing the cost of operations for agents has caused a ground swell of opposition. Agents claim that customers will eventually bear the burden of the shift if other airlines follow United’s lead. Earlier in the year, United Airlines made headlines by deciding to charge larger passengers for two seats instead of one.
united-airlines-fees.jpg United Airlines © Matt Hisnta

It’s not a surprise that airlines are beginning to shift fees to travel agents. The industry is struggling with the downturn in the economy. In this case, agents are most likely correct in predicting that fees would eventually be passed on to consumers. It has become a pattern in the airline industry to use fees to keep airline tickets low in search engines, but keep the same profits coming in.

Is the shift in fees from airlines to agents and travelers a smart policy?
___________________________________________________________________________________
gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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Bus Travel Takes Off

May 1, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

Bus travel in the United States has increased (8.1% in 2007 and 9.8% in 2008) over the past couple of years. A nation that prides itself on traveling by automobile is starting to see ultra cheap bus tickets that are too attractive to pass up. In many cases, travelers are finding that it’s even more convenient than air travel. That’s especially true in the Northeast corridor with the popular route from New York to Boston that is served by Chinatown buses.
chinatown-bus.jpg Chinatown Bus © Naomi A.

Americans love their cars, but concerns over gas prices and the environment are likely to keep them open to alternatives. If buses prices continue to drop, inter-city bus travel will persevere in the coming years. That scenario is likely with the success of budget companies such as MegaBus and BoltBus. Throw in President Obama’s recent proposal for a high-speed rail, and the nation may be moving in a new direction.

Have you traveled by bus in the U.S.? Which route? How was it?
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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National Parks Get $750 Million

April 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

National Parks in the United States received $750 million from the economic stimulus in order to address much needed repairs and construction. The package will help to pay for over 750 projects across the country. A few of the repairs include work at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Ellis Island in New York, Shenandoah National Park in Virginia, and multiple stop across the Appalachian Trail. A full list of the projects by state can be found at the Department of the Interior website.
castle-geyer-yellowstone.jpg Castle Geyser, Yellowstone National Park © Dominiqs

The National Park Service projects will address much needed maintenance across the nation. Though $750 million is a sizable amount with the current economic crisis, the preservation efforts will create 30,000 to 40,000 new jobs. If the United States wants to be serious about conservation, their parks must be kept in satisfactory condition. It’s no coincidence that the announcement of the funds landed on Earth Day. It’s meant to send a signal that the Obama Administration is committed to being green. Expect more projects that are funded by the federal government in the coming years.
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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United to Charge Large Fliers Double

April 15, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

United Airlines has decided to charge overweight passengers for two seats under certain conditions. The additonal fare would be required if the customers “are unable to fit into a single seat in the ticketed cabin; are unable to properly buckle the seatbelt using a single seatbelt extender; and/or are unable to put the seat’s armrests down when seated.” United isn’t the first airline to introduce this policy as Southwest Airlines, Alaska Air Group, and Continental have similar policies. Several of the airlines, including United, are willing to forgo the charge if there are empty seats on the flight.
united-airlines-charges-double.jpg United Airlines © Steven Damron

Airlines have been on the defensive recently including RyanAir who is thinking about charging for toilet use and Spirit Airlines which was in a battle with their employees over a new apron policy. With consumer frustrations with airline policies, United is likely to take a few hits for their new guidelines. In their defense, United claims that this will policy will “help ensure that everyone’s travel experiences [is] comfortable and pleasant.”

Is United justified in charging certain passengers double the fare based on their size?
___________________________________________________________________________________
gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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Travel Alerts Hurt Mexico

April 9, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

Mexico has been hit hard by the recent U.S. State Department travel alerts that were widely covered by the media. Fear of violence in connection with the war on drug traffickers is at the center of the problem. Spring-breakers who often travel to the country have avoided Mexico, in part, because of that issue. Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, and Rosarito Beach are among the popular spots that have seen a significant drop in travelers from last year. Fewer tourists means trouble for an economy that depends on travelers for much of its economic growth.
mexico-beaches.jpg Mexican Beach © Mdnys

With Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano recently saying that American tourists are not targets of the violence and should be safe in the tourist areas of Mexico, it’s a wonder why the media coverage was so extreme. There are certainly areas of Mexico that require caution for visitors, but few travelers venture into those places. It’s a matter of being informed before traveling. It’s a good idea to read the U.S. State Department’s document targeted at keeping spring-breakers safe. Consider reading a few blogs that cover travel in Mexico too, including “target=”blank”>Travelojos, for another view on the situation there.

Would a safety alert change your travel plans? if given the opportunity, would you visit Mexico this week.

Read about the U.S. Senate’s bill that would lift the travel ban to Cuba or the beautiful islands of Belize.
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gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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More Women Traveling Solo

April 1, 2009 by  
Filed under Travel News

Over the past two years, women have surpassed men in the statistics measuring the total number of travelers. A nearly even breakdown in 2007 has changed to a 60 to 40 percent advantage in favor of female tourists. A significant portion of that 60 percent has chosen to travel solo. Even married women are increasingly traveling alone or with girlfriends.
solo-women-travel.jpg Solo Woman Traveler © Morroia Fabrizio

The increase in women travelers is a fascinating trend. Even more so when coupled with the prospect of scores of female tourists wandering solo across the globe. In fact, an article in The Boston Globe was recently encouraging women to go at it alone claiming that locals would be eager to reach out to them. That being said, the main concern for women traveling solo continues to be safety. It’s important that solo travelers, especially women, take all necessary precautions to ensure a safe trip. The U.S. Department of State has a comprehensive list to help tourists.

Have you traveled solo? Would you consider it? Any tips?

Read about free rides home for women on Friday and Saturday nights.
___________________________________________________________________________________
gennaro-salamone-photo.jpgGennaro Salamone is the founder and editor of Enduring Wanderlust. Feel free to contact him with questions, comments, or inquiries with reference to contributing a travel article or photograph for publication.

 

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