Tag Archives: travel

November 12, 2010

And the Winner Is….

Congratulations to Stacey Brown– she is the winner of the eBags Holiday Travel Giveaway! She is the recipient of the Caribbean Joe 3 piece hardside luggage set from eBags.com.

Caribbean Joe Malibu Luggage Set

When asked what ebags.com bag, backpack, or piece of luggage was her favorite, Stacey responded:

“The Mother Lode mini-wheeled duffel is my favorite. With a toddler on my hip, I can’t balance a backpack, and this duffel holds everything I need to have within easy reach on a flight. LOVE IT!!”
http://www.ebags.com/product/ebags/mother-lode-tls-mini-21-wheeled-duffel/125538?productid=1325214

Thanks to everyone for sharing your favorite eBags products with us!

October 7, 2010

Petrut Calinescu

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Petrut Calinescu is a Romanian photographer who is based out of Bucharest. An accomplished photojournalist, Calinescu’s work has appeared in National Geographic, The New York Times, Business Week, and Esquire.

This body of work focuses on the Danube Delta in Romania, a lush area of marshes and lakes that originally stemmed from the Black Sea.

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Calinescu’s work manages to capture quiet moments of human interaction with the Danube, with their jobs, and day to day tasks.

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Viewing the perspective of the region from someone who is native to this country is a unique experience. For more of Petrut Calinescu’s work, on subjects such as Transylvania, The Ocean, or countries foreign to him, such as India, or Afghanistan, visit his website.

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September 7, 2010

We [heart] travel!

Something about being back at work after the long weekend turns my thoughts to wandering. How about a post with a few random travel thoughts?

From Laura B, our resident design guru and America’s favorite dancer: If you’re in Budapest, don’t miss Gellert Baths. Here she is on the Old World Hungary Inspiration Trip with Emily (Chief Creative Officer and Co-founder). Love that taxi!

Emily and Laura B in Budapest

From Tami, graphic designer extraordinaire and recent vacation returnee: Check out Krakow, Poland, especially the nearby Wieliczka salt mine, a Unesco World Heritage Site. And definitely bring your kids.

Look for a blog post from Tami later this week, all about her fabulous European travels (including Hungary).

Who doesn’t love the idea of active travel? I’ve been wanting to go on a Backroads trip forever. I think 2011 is the year. Perhaps a little yoga, cycling, hiking, golf? Read Athleta’s blog post for a little inspiration to unleash your adventurous traveler. I think their new adventure travel clothes with an easy, athletic spin are pretty fun.

And speaking of travel clothes…our new women’s (that’s right, I said women’s) Palace Tee and Cafe Merino Henley make great lightweight, fashionable and consummately wearable traveling pieces. Add one of our new scarves and you’ll be ready to go there, wherever there is. Take them with you on your next journey, even if it’s just across the street.

Share some of your favorite journeys with us here by commenting on this blog post. Cheers!

August 20, 2010

Happy St. Stephen’s Day!

fireworks

Today is a Hungarian national holiday, celebrating St. Stephen I, Hungary’s patron saint and First King (between 1000 and 1038 AD). Through his powerful role as King he helped to establish the Kingdom of Hungary, so August 20th, while commemorating his life, also celebrates the birth of Hungary. During the Soviet occupation of Hungary St. Stephen’s day was dismissed as being “too religious”, and was replaced with a celebration of the Stalinist constitution, as well as a “celebration of new bread”, referring to the beginning of the harvest.

Modern day Budapest celebrates St. Stephen’s Day with fireworks, air shows, and outside fairs, with stands selling bread and cakes.

This season we happen to be carrying a shirt that references King Stephen’s reign – our Knights Double Decker Tee was inspired by the Knights of King Stephen’s army:

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Have you ever been in Hungary during St. Stephen’s Day? Did you celebrate it as a child? Feel free to share your experiences in the comments.

August 17, 2010

Land of Falling Lakes

I’ve wanted to visit Croatia ever since I saw the PBS special Land of Falling Lakes about Plitvice Lakes National Park.  I could barely believe such a majestic landscape actually existed.   Sixteen bright turquoise lakes are nestled in woodland-covered mountains, and are connected by waterfalls, caverns and bubbling streams.  Plitvice Lakes was named a UNESCO world heritage site in 1979 for its “outstanding natural beauty.”
PlitviceLakeSpring
PlitviceLakes01PlitviceLakeAutumn
PlitviceLakeWinter
Spring photo (top) by Elliot Jenko
Summer photo (2nd from top) by Jack Brauer
Fall photo (3rd from top) found here
Winter photo (bottom) found here

The documentary takes you through the seasons of the park, teaches you about the land’s unique ecology and introduces you to many of its animal residents.  With fascinating explanations of animals and the landscape of the region, this documentary will appeal to all ages.

Stream the previewPurchase the DVDAdd it to your Netflix queue.  Or better yet, go visit.

August 11, 2010

Favorite Childhood Travel Stories from our Facebook Fans

Happy Wednesday!

Every week as part of Tote Tuesday, we ask a different question on Facebook. You can win our Little Citizens tote.

Just wanted to share some of our Fans’ Childhood travel stories and one of my own.

From Sarah (this week’s winner): Driving to Canada to see Niagra Falls and getting watermelon flavored French gum stuck in my hair when we were laying down in the back of our station wagon!

From Priscilla: My parents used to take my sister and I to Tijuana every summer. We stayed at the same hotel every year, ate at our favorite restaurants and visited neighborhing cities like Ensenada, Rosarito and Tecate. We looked forward to our summers.

From Winnie: My family didn’t go on vacations when we were young. Our first family vacation was when I was 18 years old, a trip back to China, Macau and Hong Kong to visit family. My grandmother passed away and the family was there to take care of service arrangements. Needless to say, we didn’t get to do too many things fun. But it was great to meet all the aunts, uncles and cousins I’ve never met before. It was fun getting to know them.

From Julie: When I was 11 and my brother was 8, my parents took us to Europe. In s stop in Germany a man introduced himself to us and bought us pastries in the Kondotetei. Turns out he was the Burgermeister. This thrilled us because we knew this term from the Christmas special with the Burgermeister Meisterbuger!

From Luciana: I used to live in Brazil… so on summer vacation, we would drive from Sao Paulo to Belo Horizonte and stop on little farms for snacks and rest along the way…. I remember playing in this little farm/restaurant’s playground and near the cows…. I remember the food was great and fresh milk… great memories.

From Kaarin: Almost 15 years ago, my Great Grandmother, Grandmother, and Mother took me on a tour of the world and we stopped by South Afrika for two months. While we were on safari one day a young Lioness jumped on our jeep and stared us down for what seemed like hours (probably no more than a minute!) , and my Great Grandmother finally stood up and told her to shoo away with her cane . . . I’ll never forget it ;) 4 generations of women traveling around the world!

From LisaC (that’s me): I remember going to Miami Beach for the first time from Connecticut to visit my aunt, cousins and Grandpa Abe. My brother kept saying its not Miami it’s your ami. We got to swim in more than one pool and the ocean, hang out with our older cousins and go for brunch at The Fountainebleau Hotel. Pretty cool all around.

Discover more memories on our Facebook page. What are some of your favorite childhood travel stories?

August 3, 2010

The Photographs of Tošo Dabac

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Tošo Dabac was a Croatian photographer, whose work largely focused on the streets of Zagreb between 1920 and his death in 1970. A contemporary of other famous European photographers of the time such as Robert Doisneau and Henri Cartier-Bresson, his photographs have been exhibited widely throughout the world.

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Dabac’s work portrays the moments of daily life on the streets of Zagreb – people having conversations, commuting to work, walking their dogs, or shoveling snow. Photographing the same locations for decades, his work covers an array of human experiences within one city.

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You can find more of his work  here. Or, if you’re visiting Zagreb, stop by the Zagreb Museum of Contemporary Art to visit his archives in person.

Iz ciklusa Brijuni

March 2, 2010

Toting a Toddler Cross Country

We live in San Francisco, while all of our family is in the Mid-West which means at least a yearly cross country trip is in store for our family, plus vacations.  I am on the constant watch for products to make traveling with our 2 year old easier while trying to downsize the amount of gear that we need to bring along. 

Jake sleepingThere are several blogs out there with great tips and ideas.  I love http://www.flyingwithkids.com/ – this site is full of tips and products to assist with traveling.   I am definately going to use the CARES Aviation Restraint System on our next flight, this way I can check the car seat which will make getting around the terminal so much easier and quicker!  Another great site is http://www.deliciousbaby.com/travel/family-travel-tips/ – lots of great tips for preparing for the trip, getting to and from your destination, and tips like baby proofing your hotel room while on vacation.

I would love to hear about any other sites that offers information for family travel as well as any great suggestions and experiences.

July 21, 2009

revisiting kiawah

Quite often, when one thinks of vacation, one’s mind is immediately drawn to places outside of the United States. This year, my family found our-selves not on vacation, but residing at our home away from home, Kiawah Island, South Carolina. My grandparents on my mother’s side have a home on Kiawah Island. Strange as it is, my husband’s grandmother on his mother’s side also owns a home there. We both feel a bond to that Island. As kids, my husband and I remember the Kiawah that used to be. We remember the quiet beaches, the local roadside vegetable markets, and the wonderful preservation of the surrounding ecosystem. It was a place where people could embrace nature in a pure form without giving up the comforts of home. It was a modern day lifestyle that embraced the efforts of the Kiawah Indians. We brought our daughter to Kiawah this year, and as I watched her play in the surf, I felt a strange melancholy come over me; my daughter would never know the pure Kiawah that I knew. The quiet beaches and no-fuss island life that I knew is slowly disappearing, and in its place stands a ritzier, more glamorous, and much more populated Kiawah. It begged the question: what kind of Kiawah would we leave her?

Even as the island has gained recognition, it remains one of the most carefully preserved barrier islands that exist today; hopefully this will not change. The Kiawah Island of old was owned by the Kiawah Indians, populated with wild horses racing through the waves. In the 1980’s nature tours had to be given in a safari-like automobile while tourists were given a layout of the land in the midst of bobcats, wild horses, herons and alligators. The natural habitat is authentic on Kiawah specifically because of the many laws that protect the wild life on the island. For example, there are no street lights on Kiawah; the community does not want to disrupt the natural cycle for the animals. Not only do the animals have the communities’ respect, but the actual land itself has immense respect from the people of Kiawah. The fact that no building is permitted on the dunes certainly prevents any additional erosion. I hope that my daughter gets to experience the ecosystem of Kiawah. I hope that things do not become too commercialized. Seeing my little one splash in the water made me realize just how simple it is to enjoy nature and how humans are naturally drawn toward natural wonders: waterfalls, beaches, mountains, caverns, lakes and valleys. We all travel to see and experience these things. There seems to be something within nature itself that is innately human. Hopefully we won’t lose that piece of ourselves within nature as these areas that we love so dearly become more and more populated. There is an Indian saying that I really connect with regarding these issues: ‘Mitakuye oyasin!’ Literally translated, it means: ‘we are all related.’ Hopefully we remember these words and treat the land as if we are all related, the ocean, the moon, the stars, the animals, the people; we are all related.

July 14, 2009

flying solo

Flying doesn’t scare me. For some, the mere mention of an airplane elicits panic. Not this girl. Often, when a plane passes overhead, I’ll glance up and wonder what exciting place it’s bound for. And I’ll sigh with a brief moment of envy before returning to the day’s activities. I’ve flown often and for the vast majority of my life. My first flight was at 4 weeks old and I haven’t slowed down since.
Recently, I flew alone for the first time in quite a while. To celebrate my birthday, I met my husband at the tail end of a business trip for a long weekend in California. It was our first trip alone together since Annie P joined our family. The traveler that I love to be, I picked a place that left a whole country between my daughter and I. Better to just close my eyes and jump rather than dip my toe in the water by way of a close location, I say. I’ve flown halfway around the world, for goodness sakes. I figured I could leave Annie P on the east coast for a couple of days. So off I went.
The first thing I noticed about traveling alone for the first time since becoming a mother was the absolute tranquility of the experience. I don’t think that’s something you often hear people say about a plane trip. But for a mother, it can be downright therapeutic. Let me elaborate with a few examples.
On the way to the airport, I filed my nails – don’t worry, I wasn’t driving. I sat in the car with no sippy cups to dole out, no nursery rhymes to sing and filed my poor neglected nails. I chatted with my friendly limo driver (part of the birthday present). I took part in the excitement of a trip to the airport where I would be leaving for somewhere other than home. This was going to be good.
Once I made it to my gate, I just sat and watched my fellow travelers. People watching is a too often overlooked perk about traveling. When people go somewhere, they are inclined to hurry from one overrun tourist attraction to the next, without truly looking around them. One of the easiest ways to experience a new culture is to grab a seat in the center of the action, be it a market or a town square, and just watch how people live. Throw away the agenda and just be. That isn’t easy to do with a child. All your focus is on them; are they safe, where did they get the mystery object they’re chewing on from, are they bothering the person next to you. You get the picture. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but it’s surely not as easy to come by. So I soaked it in. At one point they came over the intercom to announce that our flight would be slightly delayed. For the first time ever, I truly didn’t care. I didn’t have any real place to be. I’d get there, my dear husband would be waiting, and we’d carry on.
We did eventually make it on the plane. And here’s where my trip truly began.  I ordered a drink. I drank slowly, and without having to share. I read the vast majority of a book. I ordered a movie that I watched in the middle of the day with no interruptions. It was almost like a spa day. All I needed was the robe and slippers. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in first class.
I did see a few uneasy travelers around me, sweating out the flight all the while reassuring themselves that eventually their feet would be on solid ground again. But me? I kicked my feet up as far as the space between seats in economy class will allow and enjoyed the blissful sounds of someone else’s kid crying.