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Friday, October 4, 2013

Super Useful Travel Posts

Sleeping and eating. There's no question that these are going to be some important aspects of your vacation. Bad sleep and food can really ruin your trip. I have gone places where the beds were so uncomfortable that I barely slept more than an hour or two in a row (and I can sleep anywhere) and have gone on trips where the food was so disappointing it was all I could remember about the whole experience. Successful travel really depends on a lot of things coming together. When some things go wrong, it's no big deal, but I really feel like sleeping and eating are not something to mess with. When you're tired and hungry, you may end up like me, being totally hangry (hungry + angry) and trust me, nobody wants to be around that. At the moment, I don't care that I'm super-grouchy and mean, but I feel bad for those near me...eventually. This week I want to address making these two parts of your trips better with these nice links I found on the internets.

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As I said, I can sleep pretty much everywhere. I'm one of those lucky people who can sleep curled up in an airplane seat with no problem. I once slept for five straight hours on a flight with a baby screaming at full volume two rows away. I pretty much just put on my sleep mask and zonked out. I know I'm in the minority, so when I saw this article from Lifehacker, I bookmarked it for my sleep-deprived travelmates, like my husband.

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And then there are the times that your flight is delayed and you have to sleep in the airport. Well, do you? I've never done this. When I've had a long layover, I've booked a hotel room nearby, but if your layover is unexpected and you can't get a room, then SmarterTravel has tips to safely sleep in the airport. If you have money to spare and you don't have to sleep using your carry-on as a pillow, you might be lucky enough to be in one of these fancy airports - highlighted by Stuck At The Airport - that have a variety of sleep options, including sleep pods. 

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You know that I love to save money, but I'm not willing to stay just anywhere. I've stayed in some crap places in my life, which has caused me to really research every time I go anywhere now. Just showing up hasn't worked out that well for me in the past. I also am a grown up and like my privacy, so I haven't ever stayed in a hostel, or really wanted to, but Matador thinks that these new boutique hostels might bring the hosteling trend to America. We have some, but we just aren't a country that is very friendly towards backpackers and student travelers. What do you think? Would you stay in one?

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Let's talk about food! Everywhere you go there is a specialty dish. Do you usually seek them out? I make it a point to try something new every time I travel. You just know that you're going to have the best experience of a certain dish when you're eating it in the country that perfected it. Check out these best things to eat in 35 countries.

I've often heard about people who can see colors when words are spoken or taste words. I know it's a rare "talent" to have, but I find it really amazing. If only I could have one of those skills for just one day, aside from being fascinated by it, I'm sure it would be totally overwhelming. A man in Blackpool London can taste words and he used his crazy sixth sense to map the taste of every Underground station. Now I'm really interested to visit different Tube stations to see if maybe they evoke the flavors James Wannerton tastes in the names. With some of them being such specific and weird flavors, I have to think it's taken him almost 50 years to create this map, just because he hadn't ever tasted that thing before to know what it was.

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Do you live for food? If you do, then maybe you plan your trips around the cuisine of specific countries and regions. I know I have not planned a trip to some places because I was unsure if I could enjoy some of the local foods. If you are a foodie, LonelyPlanet brings you the ten best countries to travel to.

I am a big fan of vintage furniture, buildings and clothing and I'm obsessed with underground rooms and houses. If there's a 50's diner somewhere near me, it's going on my itinerary. If I had an extra day in London, I would have spent it at the Kelvedon Nuclear Bunker. Now, the next time I am in Southern California I'm going to be visiting Carlsbad Caverns, because not only can I see hundreds of bats, but also have a meal 750 feet underground in the cave lunchroom built in the 1950s. Though it used to serve full meals, the full-service kitchen has since been shut down due to it breaking down the cave structure. Now your options are only cold foods, like sandwiches, fruit and yogurt, but still...lunch in a cave in a 50s diner!

Do you have tips on sleeping and eating when you travel or did you find a fun link (of any topic) you want to share with everyone?

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