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International Adventure Guide 2013: La Paz And Southwest Bolivia

International Adventure Guide 2013: La Paz And Southwest Bolivia Apr 17th, 2013 at 11:00AM: Bolivia is the least expensive destination in South America, yet it has an increasingly efficient tourism infrastructure. Going now, especially to the remote southwestern part of the country, means faster, easier, more comfortable travel than in the past (although you'll still have to be prepared for your share of bus rides on rutted out, unpaved roads, depending upon where you're headed). In...

International Adventure Guide 2013: Quito, Ecuador

International Adventure Guide 2013: Quito, Ecuador Apr 4th, 2013 at 11:00AM: Ecuador's capital city, Quito, has long been hailed as a great jumping off point for adventure travelers. The city is surrounded by eleven volcanoes and dozens of flowing rivers, making it an ideal locale for those looking to hike, bike, climb, kayak and more. As if that weren't enough, four regions are crammed into this tiny, megadiverse country – the Amazon jungle, the Andean...

Video Of The Day: Huayna Picchu Offers Bird's-Eye View Of Machu Picchu

Jun 11th, 2012 at 6:30PM: Standing on the mountain ridge of Machu Picchu, the most recognized site of the Incas that sits high above the Urubamba Valley in Peru, is an experience sought after by people from all over the world. Walking around the UNESCO World Heritage Site, one can't help but wonder what life was like for the Incas who lived there in the 15th century. As visitors take a moment – or in some...

Tour a Panama hat factory in Sigsig, Ecuador

Tour a Panama hat factory in Sigsig, Ecuador Mar 20th, 2012 at 1:00PM: First popularized by President Theadore Roosevelt and worn by countless travelers ever since, the Panama hat has become a symbol of coastal and tropical locales. Nothing screams I'm on vacation somewhere warm! quite like the straw hat, which is known for being breathable and able to return to its original shape after being folded in a suitcase. But what is not as well known is that Panama...

Trek the Colombian Andes in El Cocuy National Park with Mountain Madness

Trek the Colombian Andes in El Cocuy National Park with Mountain Madness Feb 3rd, 2012 at 1:00PM: Acclaimed Seattle-based adventure travel company and guide service Mountain Madness debuts its newest trip on February 4th: an excursion to Colombia's El Cocuy National Park. Although Colombia is often characterized as being mostly tropical jungle or coastline, the Andean Cordillera Oriental crosses a significant portion of the country. The El Cocuy trip will allow trekkers to explore glaciers,...

Five foods to try in Ecuador (besides guinea pig)

Five foods to try in Ecuador (besides guinea pig) Jan 29th, 2012 at 12:00PM: When discussing food in Ecuador, the most talked about meal is guinea pig, or cuy. But outside of butterflying cute cuddly rodents on a grill, Ecuadorians eat many other foods that are worth a try. From traditional to tropical, here are a few of the can't-miss eats in Ecuador. ...

Adventure vacation Guide 2012: Ecuador

Adventure vacation Guide 2012: Ecuador Jan 3rd, 2012 at 9:30AM: Most Norteamericanos are hard-pressed to locate Ecuador on the map. Those familiar with this South American country the size of Colorado usually associate it with the (admittedly) spectacular Galapagos Islands. Yet Ecuador has so much more offer besides the Galapagos, and 2012 is the year to get your hardcore on. Why? Because the country's adventure travel industry is blowing up--but it's...

Five fantastic (and mostly budget-friendly) Chilean wines available in the U.S.

Five fantastic (and mostly budget-friendly) Chilean wines available in the U.S. Sep 30th, 2011 at 12:00PM: Chilean wine--if given any thought at all--has historically been considered cheap plonk; the Gallo of the Southern Hemisphere. Those days are over, baby. In recent years, Chile has become a contender with the wines of the more well-known Mendoza Valley in Argentina, just a very high-altitude hop over the Andes. The central Chilean wine regions of Maipo, Colchagua, Casablanca, San Antonio,...

How to choose a reputable adventure travel company or guide

How to choose a reputable adventure travel company or guide Aug 5th, 2011 at 1:30PM: "Adventure travel" is a nebulous term these days. But whether your idea of a thrill is a Class-III rapid or climbing Everest, there's one thing that's ubiquitous when choosing an outfitter: safety. There are hundreds of adventure travel companies worldwide; not all are created equal. There are key things you should look for when choosing a company or independent guide, whether you're booking a...

Top five things to look for in a travel doctor, and why you should have one

Top five things to look for in a travel doctor, and why you should have one May 19th, 2011 at 10:30AM: Despite writing about food and adventure travel for a living, I used to be somewhat blasé about the concept of travel medicine. Multiple incidents of Giardia/dysentery/traveler's diarrhea/full-body outbreaks of mosquito and sand fly bites just taught me to carry a serious stash of antibiotics in my first-aid kit. At least I've always been conscientious about travel immunizations and...

Bolivia campaigns to legalize coca

Jan 20th, 2011 at 10:30AM: Four Loko, meet Coca Colla. CNN reports that Bolivia has launched a campaign to legalize coca, a native plant that has been used for medicinal purposes and as a mild stimulant by the indigenous peoples of the Andes for thousands of years. And yes, coca does contain trace amounts of cocaine. The leaves are used in purified forms of the narcotic, which is what led the United Nations to ban coca...

Top 10 souvenir hats from around the world

Top 10 souvenir hats from around the world Jul 23rd, 2010 at 9:30AM: Ever notice how every airport, tourist trap, and hotel gift shop is trying to sell you some kind of hat? That's because a hat is local. In a globalized world where McDonald's is universal and Duty Free in Dubai sells the exact same sunglasses and chocolate as Duty Free in Detroit, it's nice to know that there are certain things (like hats) that you can still only find in certain far-flung...

Return to the void with Simon Yates

Return to the void with Simon Yates Jan 21st, 2010 at 9:00AM: Touching the Void is one of the most well known, and loved, mountaineering books of all time. It is so popular in fact, that it spawned a film of the same name. For those who aren't familiar with the story, back in 1985 British climbers Simon Yates and Joe Simpson went to the Peruvian Andes to climb Siula Grande, a 20,814 foot peak. On the descent, Simpson fell, and broke his legs, which is...

Lonely llama wanders Pikes Peak

Lonely llama wanders Pikes Peak Oct 3rd, 2009 at 8:00AM: Recent visitors to Pikes Peak, near Colorado Springs, Colorado, have been surprised to find an unexpected creature wandering the slopes of the 14,000 foot mountain. According to this story from The Gazette, an escaped llama has been prowling the area for the past three weeks, avoiding capture, while posing for photos, and trying unsuccessfully to join the local herd of bighorn sheep. Llamas are...

Photo of the Day 8.29.09

Photo of the Day 8.29.09 Aug 29th, 2009 at 5:00PM: Since this is my last weekend in Peru, I felt it would only be appropriate to send along a postcard from this scenic land. And talk about waking up and having this as your morning vista! This gorgeous photo by rickmccharles has a whole slew of beautiful snapshots of Andean Peru. This particular shot was taken on the Ausangate Circuit, which -- well -- pretty much speaks for itself if you ask me....

High altitude adventure in Colombia

High altitude adventure in Colombia Aug 2nd, 2009 at 8:00AM: For years, Colombia was off limits for most travelers. It was a dangerous place filled with warring drug lords, violent guerrilla activity and rampant crime. But that has changed in the past couple of years, and visitors to Colombia are beginning to rediscover its natural wonders, as stability has returned to the country. As usual, adventure travelers are the first to return, looking for an...

Photo of the Day (5.31.09)

Photo of the Day (5.31.09) May 31st, 2009 at 6:00PM: Light and shadow are the photographer's secret weapons, something artfully demonstrated in this image from Flickr user nabil.s. Nabil took this shot of the Andean Mountains in Peru, darkened by eerie clouds and enveloped by the oncoming dusk. I love the tiny plot of brightly-lit mountain in the background. It looks like it's about to be swallowed by an approaching monster. Do you have any travel...

Alternative Treks to the Inca Trail

Alternative Treks to the Inca Trail Mar 3rd, 2009 at 8:00AM: Yesterday we wrote about The Inca Trail, one of the best known and most popular treks anywhere in the world, culminating with hikers arriving at Machu Picchu following a stunning four day journey through the Andes. Unfortunately the popularity of the trail is also one of its drawbacks, with literally hundreds flocking to it on a daily basis during the high season. Those crowds can deminish the...

Classic Treks: The Inca Trail, Peru

Classic Treks: The Inca Trail, Peru Mar 2nd, 2009 at 9:00AM: Peru is, beyond a doubt, one of the top adventure travel destinations in the entire world. It offers an amazing array of things to see and do, perfectly blending culture with both mountain and jungle settings, along with ancient artifacts and ruins that rival those found in Egypt. Of course, the most spectacular and famous of those ruins is the lost city of Machu Picchu, located at 8000 feet above...

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