This is truly our traveling issue, which is always a good idea for a travel industry magazine, of course, but this “On Location” issue is really, really a travel industry travel magazine. Sarah Muñoz, for example, in our cover feature (page 14), went off to South Africa for a look at some of the old and even some new travel options for you to offer your clients. And in keeping with her own personal code of going above and beyond her duties as a travel chronicler, she lost her pants in a fast-moving South African river while reporting on a river rafting program. Way to go, Sarah, that’s really giving it your all or your pants, anyway, for a story. Next, she was off to Puerto Rico for a report on San Juan’s Condado neighborhood (page 24), its delightful cuisine and where to go to eat, drink and be merry. But she didn’t stop there. When she returned home, she put on another pair of traveling pants (traveling pants—hmmm, that sounds like a great book or movie title) and headed to downtown L.A. right into the “Thick of Things” (page 44) for still more travel adventures. Stacey Zable also checked in with another Puerto Rico report on her stay at the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino (page 26), while Sergio Ortiz kept his pants on when he journeyed to Koh Samui in Thailand (page 20), where he learned how to “…unwind after a day of jungle trekking, visiting a fisherman’s village or hiking to nearby waterfalls…” at the W Retreat Koh Samui. Obviously, he, too, went that extra mile, forcing him to “unwind” at the sumptuous “W” beach resort. Nobody can say our staff doesn’t go that extra mile…to the beach, to that waterfall, to the resort spa. (See Sergio’s Thailand pictorial on our new recommend.com, as well as his Japan travel blog—he followed up Thailand with a trip to Japan—on our newrecommend.travel site.) Ciara LaVelle, trooper that she is, toughed it out scaling the luxurious heights of Jade Mountain (page 22), that high-end resort within a high-end resort at Saint Lucia’s Anse Chastanet Resort, then came crashing back to earth at charming budget accommodations in Mexico’s Playa del Carmen (page 28). Adria Valdes put on the feed bag in “Scrumptious Savannah” (page 46), endangering her waist line with good old boy dining and fighting off sugar shock from the delectable desserts, while Vivian Holley took to the high seas aboard the oh-so-elegant Queen Elizabeth, Cunard’s pristine showcase of a not-so-bygone era (page 48). And then there’s yours truly who braved his way and contributed his share on page 42, by bellying up to the Belgian bars in a dedicated and certainly enthusiastic quest, “In Search of the Holy Ale,” with the Flanders Tourism team. To be honest, we’re not sure we actually found it, but we’re pretty sure we remembered to keep our pants on for pretty much most of the trip, a commendable, if not a memorable part of the adventure. You can find the Flanders travel blog, by the way, on recommend.travel as well.
Also, not to miss is our special feature on Central America, in which Carla Hunt took a few detours within this region to report on “Roads Less Traveled.”
next month We’re going to give you even more special destination information next month, with an 8-page Cruise Stockholm Travel Planner, and a 16-page Flanders Travel Planner, offering a host of information on where to go, what to see, where to dine and what to drink in these fascinating destinations. We’re also going to keep it in the family next time around with the annual September Family Travel issue, with features on family cruising, escorted family tours to China, new family product in Hawaii, family adventures in Africa and onsite Florida family fun with our managing editor Paloma Villaverde de Rico and her family in Jupiter Beach and the Florida Keys. In the meantime, have a great read.