Dolly Travels – Riomaggiore and Manarola

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Riomaggiore and ManarolaWe have to leave this heavenly place this morning. Where did our 3 days go, so fast? We had good weather, so we were very happy about that. On Tuesday morning, we took the train to Riomaggiore, the southern-most of the 5 villages comprising Cinque Terre. We stepped into the little church, meandered through the winding streets. We were happy to see that, by the public water fountain, hung a doggie dish, so the dogs could have fresh water, too.

After doing some window shopping, we walked from Riomaggiore to Manarola, though the Via Dell’ Amore. We stopped just before reaching Manarola for some refreshment. That really wasn’t necessary, as the distance between the 2 villages is only about a mile. But it was such a beautiful place to stop and look out at the sea, how could we resist?

Once we finished our tour of Manarola, we had to take the train back to Vernazza, as the trails are closed between Manarola and Corniglia and from there to Vernazza. Only the beginning stretch that we had just walked, and the trail between Vernazza and Monterosso are open.

Full Story from Dolly Travels

Click here for gay travel resources in Liguria.


Nice, France – A Hidden Gem

Author: , May 31st, 2012

France is one of the best gay travel destinations- and Nice is a hidden gem of a city that will leave you planning your next romantic vacation! This idyllic town epitomizes the French Riviera: deep blue seas, plunging coastlines, and Mediterranean lifestyle. This is one of the oldest human settlements in Europe, and has been attracting visitors for centuries. Nice has tons of hidden gems of its own though, so check out a few of our favorites during your next French Riviera visit!

Coco Beach: Coco Beach is Nice’s gay beach that is also clothing optional most of the year. There are usually a number of gay people clustered together on the rocks sunning themselves with still plenty of space to have some room for your self. This beach is a bit secluded but the breathtaking location and views are well worth the journey!

Castel Beach: Home of the Castel Plage beach restaurant, this gorgeous beach is nestled under the Chateau. There’s a wide stretch of beach and the water is often calmer than elsewhere on the Baie des Anges so this is an excellent place to catch some rays and waves!

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Click here for gay travel resources in Southeastern France.

Greece: Mykonos Gay Film Festival Starts June 11th

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Mykonos Gay Film FestivalBeen to gay Greece? Mykonos has been the almost lone hotspot for three decades, and this summer there will be three large gatherings and events attracting many international visitors.

In the lineup is the Gay International Film Festival. For film buffs, there are two dates to put in your calendar: June 11-17 and September 10-16. At two films per night for only 8 Euros, how could you be anywhere else at 9 and 11 pm every night of the festival week?

Flms include newish, award-winning “Milk,” to “Velvet Goldmine” which won an award for artistic contribution to Cannes Film Festival in 1998.

Full Story from Rainbow Tourism

Click here for gay travel resources in Greece.


Gay Travel’s Ten Favorite Gay Bars

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Top Gay BarsOK, there are thousands of amazing gay bars and clubs throughout the world, but here’s our list of a few that cannot be missed! Great drinks, hot patrons and incredible atmosphere … these 10 venues have it all.
OK, there are thousands of amazing gay bars and clubs throughout the world, but here’s our list of a few that cannot be missed! Great drinks, hot patrons and incredible atmosphere … these 10 venues have it all.

10. Bourbon Pub and Parade (New Orleans): “The Pub” is the heart of the LGBT community in NOLA. Located on Bourbon Street, the bar is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Gather around the downstairs video bars, dance upstairs or perch on the balcony. Whenever you visit you’re certain to find friendly locals and sexy out of towners that will make for a memorable experience.

9. Bronx Action Bar (Cape Town): Cape Town’s longest-running gay and lesbian bar remains solidly at the top of most gay nights out. It has a friendly, welcoming vibe, inviting people to bounce to pop music until dawn. The upstairs dance club, Navigaytion, is open Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, featuring the best electronic and house music.

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Davey Wavey Flies the Unfriendly Skies

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Unfriendly SkiesWhen my luggage weighed in at 62 pounds–some 12 pounds over the limit–on a recent trip to San Diego, I knew that I was in trouble.

Like many people who travel frequently, I’ve come to dread flying. The thing is, it doesn’t need to be that way. It almost seems like the airlines go out of their way to make the experience as unpleasant as possible.

When my luggage weighed in at 62 pounds–some 12 pounds over the limit–on a recent trip to San Diego, I knew that I was in trouble. I understood that there would be a fee–but I was shocked when the ticketing agent charged me $125 for the bag. I wouldn’t be surprised if, in the not-so-distant-future, airlines starts charging overweight passengers a fee for transporting their excess weight. After all, it takes additional jet fuel to transport all that mass.

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Featured Gay Friendly Accommodations: Christopher’s by the Bay, Provincetown

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay.

Christopher's by the Bay, ProvincetownPerched at the northern edge of Cape Cod, between the sea and the sand of Provincetown’s Harbor, you’ll find a vibrant, gay friendly New England village called Provincetown. Our Provincetown bed and breakfast, Christopher’s by the Bay, is nestled in the heart of this historic Atlantic harbor town, on a quiet street in a beautiful mid-nineteenth century home.

We’re an easy walk from the east end art galleries, and just a short bicycle ride away from Herring Cove beach. Or maybe you’d rather stay put and relax in our quiet, beautiful garden. Provincetown is a unique and lovely place, from the warm sands of Race Point to the glimmering reflection of an autumn sunset over the bay.

Our home has a long and storied history – as a home to school teachers, artists, fishermen and sea captains. Many of Provincetown’s city records were destroyed in a fire in the 1920’s, so a lot of the history of the building has been lost. But more recent records show that it has been an inn since the 1970’s – originally called the Swanberry Inn, then Carpe Diem. The Inn has carried the current name, Christopher’s by the Bay, since 1999.

See the Christopher’s by the Bay Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in provincetown

Rome Day Two, Part Three: The Quirinale, The Basilica Santa Maria, & The Lost Ticket

Author: , May 31st, 2012

Statue at the Quirinale

The Quirinale, RomeNext up, the Quirinale (the Italian White House, though it’s really kind of beige.

The Quirinale sits atop a hill in front of a broad plaza, with a fountain, two men with horses (the men are ivy leafed, alas) and a pylon covered in hieroglyphics, each added in a different era.

We actually saw the Prime Minister’s caravan go by a little later in the day.

The Quirinale, RomeThe Quirinale is really big – it stretches on for blocks. Partway down the street there was an entrance with a guard, who kindly let us take a photo.

Somewhere in here, I lost my metro pass (which cost 16 euro!). I know exactly how it happened but it didn’t stop me from feeling stupid.

Quirinale Fountain StatueWhen we bought the passes, we were in the metro station and I didn’t want to pull out my hidden wallet so I stuffed it into my right pocket with my iPhone. I planned to move it to my hidden wallet, but i forgot.

Somewhere along the way, I decided it would be better to move everything to one pocket, so I did, and it must have fallen out then.

Che dramma!

Fountain, RomeI don’t think of myself as a drama queen, but I was then. How stupid! I don’t deserve another ticket. You guys take the train and I’ll walk back.

In the end we scraped together the Euro and bought a new pass. I learned a lesson – don’t put things off while in Italy.

That lesson was brought home again when we were at a pharmacy in the afternoon in the Spagna and decided to wait to buy earplugs and antibacterial soap at the pharmacy near the B&B – so we didn’t have to carry it all day.

Of course, this being Italy, it was closed when we got there.

Piazza of the OperaWe took the Metro again, this time to the Piazza of the Opera, a grand open space framed by an elegant hotel on one side and the Basilica Santa Maria di Angeli on the other.

Basilica Santa Maria di AngeliOf all the grand churches we’ve seen, this one was my favorite ones – the colors were somehow lighter, not weighed down and oppressive with tons of gold.

The entry is a wonder in itself, apparently an old brick ruin fitted with huge bronze dors, with figures emerging from the doors in bas-relief.

The MeridianaThis church also hi-lights some of the scientific advances the Catholic Church once made, including the pendulum that allowed people to keep exact time, and the Meridiana here – a small hole in the church wall and a calendar laid out in marble along the floor that allowed its inventor, Francesco Bianchini, in 1702 to pinpoint the day of the year by observing where the sunlight fell at a certain time.

It was refreshing to see a church focused on scientific inquiry.

The church was also blessedly cool – Saturday was the warmest day since we arrived, probably in the mid eighties, and we walked for hours and hours – I hope to be a size or two thinner by the time we get home.

More to come in Rome Day 2, Part 4

Dolly Travels – Vernazza After the Flood

Author: , May 30th, 2012

Vernazza After the FloodI have been sitting here, in my lovely hotel room in Vernazza, both out on the deck that overlooks the main piazza as well as the harbor of this village, trying to decide where to start, to tell you about Vernazza. Seeing Vernazza today, the experience was pretty overwhelming at first, so where to begin telling you about it.

As most of my readers already know, on October 25, 2011, Vernazza and Monterosso, both villages on the Ligurian coast, in the area known as Cinque Terre, were hit hard by flash floods. Over 20 inches of rain fell in less than 4 hours, virtually washing the mountainsides down into the villages.

Vernazza is one of my most favorite places on earth. Every year I make at least one trip here, and if I am lucky, I can get up here more often. Today, Susan and I arrived by train from Florence, about 10:30 a.m. As we walked from the train station toward the main piazza, we saw reconstruction going on everywhere. We knew that the village is working very hard to recover, but still I could not take in the enormity of the devastation that had occurred here. The tunnel under the train tracks is all new…and clean. Further down toward the sea, workmen were still scraping mud off building fronts, while entire shops are gutted, with new floors being placed, new everything. The mud had come up to, and in some places, over the second story windows.

Full Story from Dolly Travels

Click here for gay travel resources in Liguria.


Travel Tips From the Locals

Author: , May 30th, 2012

Washington DC Gay TravelSix former Atlantans offer travel tips to their new cities

The GA Voice caught up with five six gay former Atlantans who now live in other cities to find out what they are up to now and to get their tips for visitors to their new cities.

Happy traveling.

Jon Arge, artist, Asheville, N.C.

When did you move to Asheville and what goals/dreams are you now pursuing while living there?

I relocated here in October of last year completely by accident. I came up for a few days to visit one of my oldest friends, and earliest collectors, who had bought a house here a few years ago. He was then leaving for the rest of the year on business so he asked if I might stay on and house sit.

Full Story from The Georgia Voice

Click here for gay travel resources.


Florida Road Trip

Author: , May 30th, 2012

Florida Road TripA road trip to Florida over the Memorial Day holiday weekend has become an annual tradition for LGBT people in the South. The coastal oil spill scare of 2010 seems to be long forgotten as visitors continue to make the trek and pack the beaches and bars.

The tradition of gays gathering in Pensacola for the holiday used to be male-oriented, but women’s parties have become so prevalent, they actually compete against each other over the jam-packed weekend.

Owners of the Atlanta-based lesbian bar My Sister’s Room are involved in one of the premiere Pensacola parties, Sexacola Beach 2012. Now in its third year, Sexacola hosts its events at Capt’n Fun Beach Club in Pensacola, which Jennifer Maguire, owner of My Sister’s Room, calls a terrific location.

Full Story from The Georgia Voice

Click here for gay travel resources in Florida.