Assignments and upcoming articles slated for AAA Northern New England Journey, Black Card Mag, Boston Globe, Consumer Traveler, Global Traveler, Jetsetter, Private Clubs, SNOW, USA Today. Recent and upcoming travels, include: Maine (various locations), Ireland, Switzerland, Upper Rhine Valley (Germany, France, Switzerland), Austria, South Africa
A sampling of recent articles:
Six new reasons to visit Maine, Boston Globe, April 27, 2013
Looking for a new experience in Maine? Here are six, ranging from world-class art to world-inspired music, new visitor centers to new sporting events.
Bethel is a sleeper. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This quiet New England village charms romantics with an ivy-covered prep school, rambling 18th- and 19th-century houses, a grassy common complete with bandstand, white-steepled churches and a covered bridge coveted by artists.
Yankee Best of New England: Maine, Yankee,May/June, 2013
Once again, I made the Maine picks for Yankee’s annual Best of New England issue.
Vienna’s art history museum reopens its Habsburg prize, Boston Globe, April 13, 2013
VIENNA — Many families accumulate treasures over generations, later relegating the exotica and artworks to the attic or a tag sale. Not so the Habsburgs, the imperial family that ruled the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Their wealth, power, and 640-year duration provided them with unparalleled opportunities and access to acquire extraordinary works.
Perfect Places: Rails to Trails
Jasper’s Historic Lodge Links Train and Terrain for the Quintessential Winter Vacation, Snow. High Winter 2013
The last time I rode the train to Jasper, I was 11 years old, bouncing in my seat in anticipation of a summer family vacation. Decades later, with a lifetime of far-flung travel under my belt, I find that I’m once again that little girl… Rails to Trails PDF
From the window of the seven-passenger charter plane, I see only a ribbon of tarmac surrounded by wilderness. There is no terminal, not even a shelter.
Best-Kept Secrets, Private Clubs, Winter 2013
North America’s glitziest alpine resorts get most of the attention — and the crowds. We slipped off the radar to find resorts where terrain trumps bling, snow falls deep, lift lines run short, and it’s often possible to score fresh tracks even days after a storm.
Northern Exposure: Baby it’s cold out there, but the Arctic winter can warm your heart, Global Traveler, January 2013
Just before opening the plane’s cabin door, the flight attendant of my reassuringly named Calm Air flight suggests bundling up. Seconds later, a blast of wind-driven 44-below zero air gusts through the cabin.
The Ultimate Confection: A connoisseur’s guide to the world’s best chocolate, Black Card Mag, winter 2012/13
Fine, artisan-made chocolate is an object of passion and adoration, a sensuous, sublime treat that lifts the mind and resurrects the body. No wonder 18th-century Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus designate the cocoa tree Theobromoa cocoa, or “Food of the Gods.”
More steak than sizzle, more substance than flash, beautiful, remote Saddleback woos skiers with old-style New England trails, take-no-prisoners glades, stunning views, and an unpretentious Yankee disposition that embraces locals and visitors alike.
Close to Heaven: For winter enthusiasts, the Alps are simply divine, Global Traveler, Nov. 2012
Heidi is haunting me. Outside my train window, traditional wooden chalets with red shutters and slate roofs dot the snow-blanketed countryside, nimble-footed mountain goats and sheep graze on hillsides, and snow glistens on the mountain summits. I expect to see the beloved storybook character around each bend.
Destination: Portland, ME: Coasting: Sierra HD Denali visits Maine, GMC The Magazine, Fall 2012
Portland lures visitors to Maine’s craggy coastline with promises of lobster and lighthouses, surprises them with the range and quality of dining choices,a nd then delights them with many vibrant arts and recreational opportunities. Coasting PDF
Treasured Island: The U.S. Virgin Islands’ St. John reveals natural and cultural riches, AAA Westways Oct. 2012
Mountains, dense with tropical forests, tumble to a palm-fringed shoreline scalloped with white sand beaches; coastal mangroves, salt pons, and coral reefs teem with sea life; and Pre-Columbian relics and Danish plantation-era ruins pepper the island.
Autumn Journey: Relish Quebec’s Vibrant Fall Foliage from the Tracks, Private Clubs, Fall 2012
Nose pressed to glass, I gaze over the 21-mile-wide expanse of the St. Lawrence River, secretly hoping to spy a whale’s spray but settling instead for seabirds and ships. I shift my view, absorbing the ebb and flow of the scalloped shoreline, marveling at the cliffs and headlands that plunge to the sea-salted waters, and eyeing the railway tracks threading the narrow shelf between them
Paris by Facebook, Boston Globe Sunday Travel, Sept. 2, 2012
PARIS — I glanced once more at the message on my screen as the Eurostar, the high-speed train from London, docked at Gare du Nord. “I have managed to get all days off while you are here,” my doppelganger had written. “Did I mention how excited I am! Feel like a kid about to meet her pen pal for the first time. . . . Even have the butterflies!”
10 tips to add more value to bargain train travel in Europe, Consumer Traveler, Sept. 1, 2012
One of the fastest, easiest, and least stressful ways to get around Europe is by train. On three recent trips over the pond, I usedBritRail as well as SwissRail passes and individual tickets, both purchased through Rail Europe.
Have a five-star British experience on a pauper’s budget, Boston Globe Globetrotting,Aug. 24, 2012
While gadding about on a BritRail pass, I used afternoon tea as a way to immerse in the United Kingdom’s rich heritage and indulge in five-star experiences, without coughing up $500 or more for a hotel room.
Five British five-star hotels where you can sample the good life without spending a mint, Consumer Traveler, Aug.18, 2012
Not everyone can splurge on UK£300 or more for a night’s rest at a five-star historic hotel, but anyone willing to ante up 15 quid can immerse themselves in Great Britain’s rich heritage.
Two for the Road: Take a romantic ramble through the countryside of Québec, Global Traveler, August 2012
When I mention Canada’s Eastern Townships to friends, I receive either a cocked eyebrow, indicating they’ve never heard of the place, or a sublime smile radiating jealousy.
Before arriving in New Brunswick last summer, I knew even less about the Miramichi River than I knew about salmon, which wasn’t much. During my one previous fly-fishing attempt, I’d landed branches, hats, even a nearby canoe, everything but a fish. That’s not something one brags about over scrambled eggs and sausage while sharing a table with the sport’s disciples.
Maine Attractions: New England gem sparkles, especially with so many new reasons to escape there, Private Clubs, June 2012
Lobster and lighthouses, craggy shores and dense forests, pristine lakes and free-flowing rivers: Maine’s landscape is as renowned as its Yankee disposition, and yet Maine isn’t so much a place as a state of mind.
Boom Town, Private Clubs, June 2012
Development frenzy has gripped this Mormon stronghold, giving the reinvented downtown a stylish vibe. Here, six new additions you don’t want to miss.
Meandering Maine’s Mid-Coast: Iconic New England sights wait at every turn off U.S. Route 1, AAA Home & Away, May/June, 2012
From the summit of Ducktrap Mountain, island-salted Penobscot Bay shimmers invitingly. The mid-Maine coast, from the tip of the St. George Peninsula to the mouth of the Penobscot River, is blessed with everything that defines Maine.
Best of Maine 2012, Yankee Magazine, May/June 2012
Once again, I made the Maine picks for Yankee’s annual Best of New England issue (restaurants, lodging, attractions, bargains, local secrets, and outdoor activities).
Like many Maine chefs, Josh Heikkinen seeks to elevate classic Maine fare to world-class cuisine. Where Heikkinen, chef-partner at Fathom in Bar Harbor, differs is that he’s not content to simply prepare native ingredients in inspiring ways. No, Heikkinen wants to raise Maine comfort foods, such as the lowly red hot dog, to culinary fame. “The red hot dog is Maine’s attempt at charcuterie. You only find it here,” he says. “I want to get it out of the convenience store and help it find its place in the culinary world.”
GT Tested: Grand America, Salt Lake City, Utah, Global Traveler, February 2012
Arrival/Check-in: Upon our arrival, a doorman came out to welcome and usher us inside for a speedy registration. Salt Lake City’s only 5-star hotel earns the “grand” in its name. Built for Utah’s 2002 Olympic Games, it was designed and furnished with artwork and antiques personally selected by owners Earl and Carol Holding, who traveled the world not only to select specific pieces but also to oversee artisans’ crafting of custom furnishings and architectural details.
Refresh Body and Spirit with Nontraditional Arizona Spa Treatments, Consumer Traveler, Jan. 27, 2012
Looking for a spa service different than the usual massage, facial, or wrap? These three treatments, available in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area in Arizona, are just that. Each appeals to those willing to consider that the universe offers truths and powers that can be enlisted and drawn upon, if we’re open to it. With me so far? Okay, cue the New Age music, and I’ll tell you more.
More than anywhere I know, the soul of a New England winter exists amid the frozen waterways, snow-drifted woods, and frosted peaks of western Maine. Raw, remote, and wild, this slice of the state, cornered by New Hampshire and Quebec, draws skiers, snowboarders, snowshoers, and snowmobilers, who revel in the deep cover and rarely crowded trails, surrounded by miles of natural beauty. Looking out from the summit of Sugarloaf or Saddleback Mountain on a brittle blue-sky day, with the snow all around blindingly white, I feel that the frozen confection below will crack and crumble if I expel a warm breath.
Charmed by Bermuda: Walks along the Railway Trail reveal the island’s lesser-known gems, AAA Northern New England Journey, Jan.-Feb. 2012
The wooden boardwalk threading Bermuda’s Paget Marsh slices through tangles of red mangroves and edges a sawgrass savannah before it ends in a stand of centuries-old cedars. As I padded along, the buzz of scooters diminished and white-roofed buildings disappeared from view.
Alas, snowboarders don’t actually know what they’re missing: the joy of carving big honking S turns on Deer Valley Resort’s corduroy cruisers, or ping-ponging Alta’s mogul-laced powder bowls, or challenging one of Mad River Glen’s sinewy, muscle-bound trails.
Schnitzel and Sauerkraut, Down East, Dec. 2011
Amid the rolling hills, woodlands, and fields of rural North Waldoboro, David Swetnam and his wife, Jacqueline Sawyer, have turned a popular local fresh sauerkraut operation into a culinary destination for German food aficionados.
Ride the rails, see the lights, and go extreme: Seven reasons to get out and enjoy winter’s wonder, Boston Globe, Nov. 6, 2011
This winter, experience the chills, thrills, snow, and ice from a different perspective. Savor the possibilities of a culinary snowsports tour in Italy. Conquer any fear of steep and deep with a specialty ski or snowboard program. View the frozen winterscape from the warmth of an excursion train. Be dazzled by the brilliance of the Northern Lights. Splurge on handmade ski boots. Careen down a snow-packed track or a sled, bobsled, or skeleton or glide across Olympic ice.
Irish Fling, Global Traveler, Oct. 2011
Northern Ireland’s Antrim Coast can steal a gal’s heart. It wooed me with promises of giant-sized steps, soaring headlands, Neolithic sites and castle ruins, then seduced me with forested glens, craggy cliffs, walled gardens and birdsong. I came armed with a laundry list of must-sees and must-dos, which included soaking up the Irish craic and sipping pints of Smitty’s, but as soon as I departed Belfast, heading north on the A2, I tossed my plans aside and let serendipity rule.
Ireland. A Rock and a Hard Place: Ramble through Irish history in the unforgiving landscape of The Burren, Global Traveler, Sept. 2011
“Where are we?” asked Shane Connolly. I glanced around the small parking pull-out, with ledges descending to Galway Bay on one side and a hill rising on the other. There was no “You are here” marker in sight.
GT Tested: Sofitel London St. James, Global Traveler, May 2011
Arrival/Check-in: The doorman spotted me approaching on foot, luggage in tow, and immediately came over, took my bags and escorted me into the hotel. Even better…
Where Now: Saddleback Maine, SKI, March 2011
My friends would prefer I not dish about Saddleback. They don’t want to share the big-mountain skiing with little mountain attitude, the inviting glades, staggering views and down-home charm.
Neon Nights, Private Clubs, Jan. 2011
It’s midnight, and it’s 44 degrees below – yes, below – zero. Celsius, Fahrenheit, it doesn’t matter; the scales meet at 40 below.
A Toast to Belfast, Global Traveler, Nov. 2010
Belfast’s historic claims range from being the birthplace of C. S. Lewis and Van Morrison to being the site of the Titanic’s construction and The Troubles, the euphemistic name given the political terror that marred the late 20th century.
Catch a Rising Star , U.S. Airways Magazine, June 2010 (PDF)
Where the South Coast’s famed beaches yield to Maine’s rockbound peninsulas, that’s where you’ll find Portland. It’s a contemporary seaport dressed in Victorian brick and cobblestone, skirted by a petticoat of islands.
Welcome to Portland; now let’s eat, U.S. Airways Magazine, June 2010 (PDF)
Before Bon Appetit named Portland “America’s Foodiest Small Town” last year, culinary tourists had already discovered the city’s seemingly insatiable appetite for all things food-related.
• How to Live on Isle au Haut, Islands, May/June 2010
Interview with Kate Shaffer about living on a remote island and operating a successful artisan chocolate company.
• Destination: Midcoast Maine A guide to the best Down East: What to see, do, buy and eat, Endless Vacation, Summer 2010
When you stand on the summit of Ducktrap Mountain, you can scan midcoast Maine’s craggy coastline from Monhegan Island in Muscongus Bay to the south all the way to Mount Desert Island, rising out of Blue Hill Bay to the north.
• Where long memory tolerates modernity, Boston Globe, March 14, 2010
TUBA CITY — Few places move the spirit the way the Navajo lands do. I keep returning to this landscape of red sandstone, deep canyons, and grassy mesas, and each time I visit, I’m awed by its beauty and humbled by its simplicity.
• Olympic Playground, Via, Jan. 2009
What is it about the Olympics that turns perfectly rational folks into sportcrazed fools? For me, it’s the theme music. I hear those opening drums and I’m ready to take on anything. Even the Dave Murray Downhill.
Dogsledding across the shores of Maine’s pristine Lake Umbagog offers a glimpse of backcountry New England not easily seen
• Destination: Maine’s Big Apple Feast on history, art and seafood in Maine’s largest city, Endless Vacation, July/August 2009
Portland delivers on the Maine icons but good. Lobster boats bob in the harbor. An L.L. Bean outlet can be found downtown. You might even spot the occasional stray moose. But Maine’s largest city (pop. 65,000) is more than postcard fodder.
• Sidetracks: Ice Climbing in Alberta, SKI, Nov. 2008