Category Archives: Recommended Reads
The New York Times ran a great piece this week about Transgender travel. It also discussed gay/lesbian travel to non friendly places.
Gender expression is a risk factor. “In some countries, they expect men to have a certain appearance; if you are not dressed for your gender, they can arrest you,” Mr. Williams said. In other countries, homosexuality may be legal but not culturally accepted, “so if you end up in the wrong neighborhood, it can get you in trouble.” As Americans, he said, “we have a strong tradition to be yourself, but in some countries the safest approach is to be the person they want you to be.”
TRAVEL + LEISURE also did a great article you might find helpful.
And The National Center for Trans Equality gives this advice.
The right to travel freely is a fundamental human right, yet travelers across the country continue to express concerns about the intrusive security screening procedures used by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
No one really knows who was in their hotel room before them. Or what kind of mess they made. Maybe it was a bachelor party and the boys got drunk and threw up. Maybe it was used for prostitution and all the sexually transmitted diseases it brings. Yes it happens, especially in the best hotels. Or maybe someone got a really bad virus infection. Worse somebody died in the room. Hotel germs are a fact of life. With so many people using these rooms, hotel germs will tend to be higher than in your house.
The important question is did the cleaning staff really clean everything properly? The TV remote control, the bed light lamp switch, the toilet seat and handle. Cleaning staff are under enormous pressure to clean fast. On average, housekeepers clean 13 to 15 rooms a day, but it can be as high as 30 at some hotels. And there is no universal standard for cleaning hotel rooms.
Like our hospitals, hotels are becoming places where anti biotic resistant bacteria are beginning to thrive. Why? Because of the constant use of commercial cleaning agents combined with heavy use of antibiotics in our meat production systems have created these super bugs. Hotel rooms are places where a huge number of people from all over the country and World bring their own strains of bacteria. And if they bring that strain of disinfectant/antibiotic resistant bacteria you are screwed. As the video below shows, staff are also using sponges and toilet brushes to clean other surfaces which adds to the problem. Fecal contamination from toilet brushes can be deadly, especially if they are used to scrub surfaces other than the toilet.
Just because your room looks spic-n-span doesn’t necessarily make it so. Our friends at Oyster.com dish the dirt on hotel cleaning practices and offer tips on how to freshen up after checking in.
First of all, let’s just start out by saying that not every hotel room is secretly swarming with skin cells of past guests, E. coli, and/or unidentified bodily fluids. Every hotel has different protocol, schedules, and cleaning staff that determine just how clean your temporary home is going to be. We aren’t dumb (and neither are you); we know that not all maids are spending hours scrubbing, buffing, and spraying down every surface and crevice of our hotel rooms. But after digging, we uncovered some pretty dirty secrets of hotel “cleaning” practices, hiding in the sheets, on your pillows, across the bathroom counter, in the glasses you drink from — pretty much everywhere. Think you’re better off not knowing about how dirty the bedsheets are or what infectious bacteria is colonizing on that remote control? Trust us, it’s better to know — and know how to deal with it. And we’re here to help.
Glasses and Mugs. Tv remotes and telephones. Bedding and more!
READ ABOUT IT AT JETSETTER.
According to my Trip Advisor account, I have been to 51 cities in 9 countries. I was feeling kind of proud – until I read this article on LIFE HACK, 50 Incredible Travel Experiences to Have in Your Lifetime!
Seems I have done NONE OF THEM!
Most are in countries I have not seen yet – and some countries I really don’t care to visit. Just because any of our travel experiences are not on this list – does not lessen their value. So what I have not been to India. or Peru.
I HAVE been to Paris and sat at a sidewalk cafe and people watched;
I HAVE been to Budapest and seen the ornate bath houses;
I HAVE been to Prague and looked over the city of spires from the TV Tower;
I HAVE been to New York City and admired the Twin Towers before they fell;
I HAVE been to Hocking Hills Ohio and walked inside the majestic caves and forest;
I HAVE been to the Grand Canyon….
An incredible travel experience can be anywhere – and different for everyone…
What have been YOUR BEST travel experiences?
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WE LOVE AUSTRALIA!
corporate sponsorship. In the The Advocate, an editor said, “What’s a
guy to do when he’s got the gold, the fame, the man – but no big-time
endorsements?” In 2009, Mitcham secured financial support from the
Australian telecommunications provider Telstra. In 2010, he was
announced as the new face of Funky Trunks and has appeared on
advertising campaigns across Australia, Europe and the United States. He
is also a spokesman and “swimwear ambassador” for the brand.
“People kept remarking on how they were surprised that a gold
medal and fame hadn’t changed me. I always responded, ‘Why would I
change? Being me is the easiest person to be.’ I was lying. It wasn’t.”
Travel wisdom in your pocket
Get around New York, Paris, Berlin, and London in high style
TASCHEN 4 Cities is a 12 Vol. Boxed set of wonderful books covering New York, London, Paris, and Berlin. Each city separated into 3 guides for ”hotels”, “restaurants”, and “shops”.
We love that they’ve taken the design-oriented (and coffee-table sized) TASCHEN guide book concept and translated it into pocket-sized companions. Wonderful for gift giving and a great keepsake from these wonderful cities! Great photos and the text gives you interesting and useful information, as well as addresses, phone numbers and website address. $60 retail price, $39 at Amazon.
TASCHEN 4 Cities – 12 Vol. in Box (available Nov. 22)
Highlights include –
London: Number Sixteen, a chic South Kensington hotel in a beautiful Victorian townhouse with romatic gardens, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s restaurant and social project, Fifteen, where teenagers cook the meals, and Dover Street Market, the multi-floor concept store founded in 2004 by Comme des Garçons.
New York: the Maritime Hotel, a former sailors’ dorm, now Chelsea’s coolest hotel, the Waverly Inn, Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter’s exclusive salon for the glitterati, and where to buy New York’s best cheesecake
Paris: Ladurée, the best macaroons in the city, the ultra-luxurious Ritz hotel on elegant Place Vendôme, and Colette fashion concept store
Berlin: hip nightspot Green Door, where one rings the doorbell to gain entrance, oriental delight at Edd’s, the best Thai restaurant in Berlin (perhaps Germany), and experimental store Bless, “publicizing artistic values through products”
Order yours today!
TASCHEN 4 Cities – 12 Vol. in Box (available Nov. 22)
Canada’s XTRA reports, “The professional networking site LinkedIn has pulled an ad for a gay travel guide, claiming it contains “inappropriate content or language.”
“It’s baffling,” says Robert Christofle at Open Mic Press/Icon Empire Press.
Google Ad and Facebook haven’t objected to the ad, Christofle notes. “Out of the three different advertising sites, only LinkedIn has a target gay networking site, and they are the only ones to pull the ad.”
Christofle says he’s been promoting The Gay Travel Guide For Tops and Bottoms on a variety of sites, many of them straight, without incident. But LinkedIn, which has networks ostensibly catering to gay professionals, censored the ad.
Though the book cover contains no overt sexual imagery, the letter A in its title could subtly suggest two people having sex doggy style. “It’s very tongue in cheek,” says Christofle.
LinkedIn says it pulled the ad due to its sexual content.
Read the full article on XTRA
BUY THE BOOK! The Gay Travel Guide For Tops And Bottoms
Before there was
Scott Herman ,
there was Davey.
Unless you have been
under rock the last 5 years,
you should know
who DAVEY WAVEY is.
The gay fitness hottie is more delicious than Mom’s Apple Pie! And his blog Break The Illusion is uber popular.
The 27 year old says, “I assumed this physical form to embark on a journey of peace and love.
Though I’m a bit of a nomad, traveling the world from city to city and town to town, my current location is Rhode Island, USA. For a career, I’m a certified personal trainer and have a fitness blog, Davey Wavey Fitness .
My life’s mission is to 1.) share my love with the world 2.) teach others about the pervasive oneness of this perfect universe and 3.) learn, grow and develop from all my experiences and all my teachers.”
It is his Videos which are getting international attention now. And I predict, this attention could bring him much deserved fame. You have to love the whole Web 2.0 movement. When I grew up, and I am dating myself (gasp!) we didn’t have YouTube, Twitter or even the Internet! The world is an oyster now. Anyone can be their own PR agent and get seen by millions. Bloggers and Vloggers are becoming the stars of today.
YouTube invited Davey to Park City Utah for the week, for the Sundance Film Festival, because one of his video clips is being used in Kevin MacDonald and Ridley Scott’s documentary, Life in a Day .
Life in a Day is the result of director Kevin MacDonald’s plea to the YouTube community to record one day of their lives – July 24th, 2010 – with the ultimate aim of patching them all together. The call was heard, and 80,000 videos were submitted for selection, totalling 4,500 hours of raw footage.
Produced by Ridley Scott, the footage was eventually cut down to the 90 minute feature that is garnering raves from reviewers and audiences for it’s moving and poignant scenes harnessed from everyday life, by everyday people. Encompassing the most mundane daily activities to the most exhilarating and saddest experiences, the film operates with a kind of rhythm that can change mood on a dime, and can elicit a broad smile as quickly as it can have the viewer choking back the tears .
The movie premiered at Sundance this past week and streamed live on YouTube. And you can watch his MEET THE FILM MAKER interview . The actual film will be released sometime in 2011.
When traveling, Davey says, “Staying healthy and fit while traveling is always a challenge. But here are my top 6 tips for making it happen: Calorie counting never takes a vacation; skipping the gym is not an option; use your feet; bring your own snacks; and be flexable.” Read all the tips in detail on Daveys Fitness Blog . He also gives some pointers for hotel stays .
He says, “Being a frequent traveler doesn’t need to be a death sentence for your fitness program or a prescription for obesity. Keep your game face on—and I think you’ll be pleased with the results: more energy, better sleep and increased immune system performance, just to name a few.”
Davey on YouTube Davey on Facebook
Best Gay News and New Gay Travel Guide
For the past three decades the author has been doing just that on what he calls working vacations — short-term overseas assignments that do not require you to sell the house or quit your job. In this book he provides the reader with invaluable ”how to” information such as locating the best working vacation opportunities, negotiating terms, renting your home, securing housing in the host country, traveling safely with young children, and much, much more.
Many people can not afford to take an unpaid, leave of absence, from their current jobs, to travel. The author talks about overseas employment that will pay you enough to cover most or all of your living and transportation expenses!
‘Michael Schneider has done what many of us want to do, but few ever manage to. Live all over the world without giving up his house, job, or nest egg. And in On the Other Guy’s Dime he shows you the practical steps needed to do it yourself. This is perfect for academics, working professionals and retirees. This is about “free vacations” where things get comped for you. This is about a working vacation, where you will go and stay for a 4 week minimum, and possibly teach, consult, or maybe help with research.
He tells stories that will ignite your passion! And he provides useful details and links, so that you too, can begin learning about opportunities that exist. He did all of this in the last 30 years. Think of how the world has changed in the last ten years! He looks around now and says, “in the past few years have opened up my eyes to possibilities I had never previously considered.”
If you have a desire to see the world and experiece other cultures, and quite possibly get paid for it; read this book!
On The Other Guy’s Dime – A Professional’s Guide to Traveling Without Paying
Best Gay Travel Guide
People these days have a “bucket list”. Everyone says, “There are a lot of things I need to do and see before I die.” Walk into any bookstore and see a shelf’s worth of guides listing things to accomplish—from 100 Things To See In Your Lifetime to 101 Things To Do Before You’re Old And Boring. I appreciate the idea behind Patricia Schultz’s 1,000 Places to See Before You Die: A Traveler’s Life List , the inspiration for this genre of books.
So I decided to create an antidote—a list of places and experiences that you don’t need to worry about missing out on. I called upon travel-loving friends, family and, in some cases, complete strangers, to tell me about overhyped tourist sites, boring museums, stupid historical attractions and circumstances that can make even worthwhile destinations miserable.
Some entries on the list are unquestionably unappealing, like a field strewn with decomposing bodies, or fan hours at the Las Vegas porn convention. Some depend on context—Pamplona’s a very different city from the perspective of a bull. Some are just good stories, albeit ones that are more fun to read about than to experience firsthand.
As I gathered suggestions, I came across a characteristic common among frequent travelers: a reluctance to define anything as bad. “I have a soft spot for underdog places and a perverse need to find even the worse stuff a source of delight and titillation,” wrote one friend about her inability to hate on Uzbekistan or, for that matter, Detroit. She’s right, of course—the worse something is in the moment, the better the story when you get home. So for those people who look at a warehouse full of rotting human sewage and see an interesting way to spend an afternoon, I also included some places that would be impossible to visit even if you were intent on finding the bright side in everything, like the Yucatan Peninsula 65 million years ago, or the bottom of the Kola Superdeep Borehole. It might seem pointless to say that you shouldn’t go to a place like Io, Jupiter’s least hospitable moon—but look at it this way: when someone publishes 1,001 Places In Space To See Before You Die, the pressure will be off.
No matter what type of traveler you are, I invite you to take a break from your other to-do lists and spend a moment being grateful for some of the things you’re not doing. Then, when you’re ready to hit the road, leave behind your list of 1,001 Places You Must Pee,* and give yourself a chance to come up with some experiences of your own.
Travel should be an adventure, not an assignment—and if you spend your vacations armed with too many checklists, you’re missing the point of leaving home.
Asia’s most gay-friendly country
A sex survey conducted by Time Asia Magazine (published March, 2001) found that Thai people are the most gay-friendly in asia. Thai for Gay Tourists has been designed to enhance your visit to the country so that you can communicate in a more fun and efficient way. If you are gay and are visiting or planning to visit Thailand, this book is a must for you!
THAI FOR GAY TOURISTS… offers gays a new and fun way to communicate in the Thai language; provides information for gays seeking romance in Thailand; has commentary sections about many aspects of Thai gay romantic culture; provides gay slang and phrases as well as anecdotes and stories; requires no previous knowledge of the Thai language; is written in a brisk, interesting style and is well organized with clear, easy to read postscript fonts; and is fun to use!
Thai for Gay Tourists: A Language Guide to the Gay Culture of Thailand is the perfect gay language guide for your journey to the Land of Smiles—Thailand!
Even if you have have no prior knowledge of Thai, this book clearly presents the sound system and shows the Thai script. It provides ALL vocabulary relevant to gay life, and gives quite a bit of background from gay Thais about life in their country.
My only caveat would be that it generally presents homosexuality as accepted and even celebrated there. This is a common presentation of gay life in many countries. However, one should always be aware that we are not the majority and there is bigotry everywhere. This is not New York City or San Francisco! But with that in mind, I must say this an impressive little book–it does a lot in a short space, the author is to be commended!
The author also wrote Queer : Facts About Gays and Lesbians (Thai Edition) .
Read more about GAY ASIA
right here on New Gay Travel Guide!
Greater Fort Lauderdale
has long rolled out the rainbow carpet for GLBT guests, but now “America’s Favorite Gay Resort Town” is offering GLBT travelers the chance take their vacation from “Mild to Wild” with the destination’s latest mobile site.
The new “Mild to Wild” GLBT mobile site is easy to navigate, and lets users select what type of activities they would like to experience in Greater Fort Lauderdale ranging in levels from Mild, Medium to Wild day or night!
The Mild to Wild digital stylist randomly generates morning, afternoon, evening and late-night activities and events, as well as Foursquare deals from participating businesses. Visitors can Play Gay on Greater Fort Lauderdale’s new GLBT mobile site and input their travel dates to customize the Event Calendar, browse GLBT-owned and GLBT-friendly accommodation choices, as well as enter to win a free beach getaway.
“‘Mild to Wild’ is all about coming OUT and enjoying more in Greater Fort Lauderdale, from the waterways, to the great restaurants, shopping and nightlife throughout the area and especially in our ‘Gayborhood’ of Wilton Manors, home to the destination’s largest GLBT population,” said Nicki E. Grossman, president of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We invite all of our GLBT guests to check out the new mobile website, and customize how wild, or mild, they want their next Greater Fort Lauderdale visit to be. Remix as often as you like to get a fresh batch of fun!”
To view the new “Mild to Wild” mobile site and to get more information on GLBT offerings throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale, visit Sunny.org .