Mausoleo di Galla Placidia in Ravenna – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , April 30th, 2018

Mausoleo di Galla Placidia in Ravenna - Keep Calm and Wander

I am an admirer of ancient art. And when I glance back at the time I spent in Mausoleo di Galla Placidia or the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, I feel that my thirst for the arts, especially the mosaic art, had been partly quenched.

To describe this small mesmerizing place, I’d go with what UNESCO has said about it: “It is the earliest and best preserved of all mosaic monuments, and at the same time one of the most artistically perfect.”

1. It is still unknown what the building was built for

Surprisingly enough, by the looks of it, one would think that it is a chapel. The Byzantine mosaics dotted on the ceiling, the walls, and the floor say much about it pertaining to its role as a chapel. However, till date, no one quite knows what it was built for. I asked one of the men there about its story and he said that this building was built by Honorius’ sister Galla Placidia. Honorius was the Roman ruler at that time. Just like me, ahem, Galla Placidia also loved arts and crafts and, reportedly, she poured all of her love in creating the captivating mosaics lining the walls of this place. But more than her love for the arts, it seems that she built it as a mausoleum for her and her family.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Ravenna Gay Travel Resources

Gay Phuket – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , April 30th, 2018

gay Phuket - The Nomadic Boys

We love Thailand. It’s got it all – best beaches, terrific food and the gay scene of Bangkok we think one of the most fun in the world.

Phuket is one of the most popular gay destinations to visit in Thailand, with a large gay scene in Patong. This large Thai island is also an excellent transport hub, with many international airlines flying here, making it very accessible.

These are our 5 favourite things to do in gay Phuket.

Gay bars and clubs in Phuket

The Paradise Complex in Patong is the focal point for the gay life of Phuket, with most of the gar bars and clubs. This is where you’ll want to come for a gay fun night out.

Most of the bars have a free show every evening, but guests are expected to buy at least one drink. They generally get busy from around 10pm when they start putting on street performances to attract customers. By midnight most of the gay bars in Phuket are crowded, especially on weekends. Some of the best hangouts of Patong include:

Boat Bar: this is one of our favourite gay bars in Patong, which we came to every night during our stay. It’s open everyday, with at least 2 cabaret shows taking place every evening, the first at midnight, then again at 1:30am.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

Thailand Gay Travel Resources

Arbor View House B&B – Long Island Gay Friendly Bed & Breakfast

Author: , April 28th, 2018

Arbor View House B&B - Long Island Gay Friendly Bed & Breakfast

Arbor View House B&B is a Long Island Wine Country Bed & Breakfast Inn offering elegant lodging accommodations in a romantic and historic setting.

This North Fork Winery region B&B and spa offers spa services, award winning gourmet breakfast, relaxing gardens, fine linens and accessories and gracious concierge services.

See the Arbor View House B&B Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Long Island Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Lesbian Singapore – Once Upon a Journey

Author: , April 28th, 2018

Lesbian Singapore

Singapore is a modern city that has much to offer. It’s Southeast Asia’s smallest state, a global financial centre, and shopping paradise. It is divers as a blend of Malay, Chinese, Arab, Indian and English cultures and religions: Singapore is interesting for everyone! We planned on staying for a weekend, but end up staying for an entire week. We wander around the city and see so much!

Initially we were scared to go to The Most Expensive City in the world. But as soon as we arrive in Singapore, we love it. It amazes us how this high-tech city offers so much free things to do! We enjoy every second!

By Roxanne & Maartje – Full Story and Video at Once Upon a Journey

George Washington Carver National Monument and Museum – Traveling in Our Fabulous Gay World

Author: , April 28th, 2018

George Washington Carver National Monument and Museum

George Washington Carver National Monument and MuseumJust 17 1/2 miles southwest of Joplin, Missouri in a very small town of Diamond, population of less than 1,000, is the George Washington Carver National Monument and Museum. Carver, a black American, was born in 1864 there and died in Tuskegee, Alabama on January in 1943.

Six months later the United States Congress designated the George Washington National Monument, the first park to honor an African American scientist, educator and humanitarian AND HE WAS “FAMILY”.

In her 2015 biography, Christina Vella reviews his relationships and “suggests that Carver was bisexual and constrained by mores of this historical period.” Carver is said to have enjoyed a very intimate relationship with his male assistant Austin W. Curtis Jr, a Cornell University graduate in chemistry who taught at a North Carolina College. This companionship, as it was seen at the time, helped Carver to continue working in his later years.

Carver was best known as the inventor of peanut butter but he was also a botanist, chemist, and inventor whose work revived the last 19th and early 20th century agricultural economy of the American South. He was born the son of slaves. He never knew his parents as his father died before he was born and his mother and his siblings were kidnapped during the Civil War and he never saw them again.

At a very early age, he knew that education was the only way to go. Later in life, he said, “A man can make a lot of money however another man can steal your money away, but another man can never steal your education.”

George Washington Carver National Monument and MuseumAfter going from school to school, he was finally accepted at a college in Kansas only to be told upon his arrival that because he was black, that he was not welcomed. That did not deter him and he did attend a college in Iowa and got both his Bachelors and Masters degree in Agriculture. Booker T. Washington, President of the Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University) hired him to head the Agriculture Department there. He stayed there for over 47 years until his death.

He invented over 300 uses for the peanut including peanut butter, peanut oil, peanut shampoo, salted peanuts, shredded peanuts, pecan flour, pomade, and peanut brittle, He taught methods of crop rotation, introduced several alternative cash crops for farmers that would improve the soil of areas heavily cultivated in cotton.

He was a highly sought after speaker all over the country and in England. He was given dozens of awards for his works. In 1921 he gave a captivating testimony before Congress on Agriculture. He inspired hundreds of both students as well as businessmen and farmers to understand what they could do.

George Washington Carver National Monument and MuseumCarver was also a gifted artist and some of his paintings and drawings are on display at the museum. He also enjoyed crocheting and a couple examples of those are also on display. Needless to say Carver had a very rough early life but he rose above it and became a truly great person.

TIME magazine called him the “Black Leonardo da Vinci” as he was such a Renaissance man. And this all started with him in the 1800’s! And people today complain about having problems! Carver MADE his life as he wanted to. Sure he had setbacks but that did not stop him. Guess the old adage, “Never, never, never, never give up” rings true.

Learn more about George Washington Carver by viewing this movie: https://www.nps.gov/gwca/learn/photosmultimedia/multimedia.htm

The website for his National Monument is https://www.nps.gov/gwca/index.htm

Don and RayAlways remember to have fun when traveling, meet new people and talk to everyone!

TRAVELING IN OUR FABULOUS GAY WORLD is written by Donald Pile and Ray Williams, Award-winning, Celebrity travel columnists who write for gay publications from coast to coast (And now legally married).

Proud members of the IGLTA. You can email them at gaytravelers@aol.com and visit their website at http://gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com/

Missouri Gay Travel Resources

Traveling While Lesbian – Once Upon a Journey

Author: , April 27th, 2018

Traveling While Lesbian - Once Upon a Journey

Travelling with ‘the one’ nowadays seems like the ultimate dream. We’re living it, and it is an absolute fairy tale. But, travelling the world as a lesbian couple isn’t as easy as packing your bags and go.

Compared to straight travel couples, and arguably to solo female travellers, there is much more to think about regarding safety. We have travelled to countries with anti-gay laws and we refuse to boycott countries for that reason, we believe travelling the world is for everyone! In light of #LesbianVisibilityDay, we want to share our tips & tricks for travelling as a lesbian couple and encourage you to do it too.

BE WILLING TO ADAPT

If you don’t want to adapt, stay home or travel to a destination with a similar culture to your own. Think about the reason why you travel. Is your travel a break from normal life, a vacation or a holiday? In other words: do you want to relax and don’t think about anything? Find an LGBT-friendly destination. Travelling in other cultures comes at the price: you have to adapt. And we LOVE that! That might sound weird: why do you love adapting – and not being your “true self”?

Well, we love to learn about other cultures, we love to learn about traditions, different beliefs and customs. Also of countries with anti-gay laws. Be respectful of other cultures, and you’ll find other cultures might change you for the better! But: be prepared to adapt, to pretend you’re “just friends”, to accept a room with twin beds and most of all: be willing to leave your PDA in the hotel room.

By Maartje Hensen – Full Story at Once Upon a Journey

Inside Sforza Castle – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , April 27th, 2018

Sforza Castle Milan - Keep Calm and Wander

Any fortress or castle in the world carries a piece of history that has passed by and eroded, yet evolved its fabric culturally, architecturally, and religiously. The Sforza Castle in Milan, Italy is no different and this is what I found out after visiting it. Milan, generally, is a welcoming city with its Italian vibes. However, it is this castle that brings about its true nature both historic and present.

Before going on stating what you can do in the castle, let us take a dive in the pool of history. I know I hate it, too, but for the sake of understanding this place better, let’s spare some moments.

A Short History

Sforza Castle or Sforcesca castle has seen many eras of complex invasions, sieges, and renovations. Built in the 1450s by Francesco Sforza, it is one of the few remnants of the 14th-century citadels. However, before it was a castle or a residential quarter of the notable rulers, it had been a Visconti fortress with impeccable defense systems – walls and towers that are so high and mighty. It was on the ruins of this fortress that Sforza built the Sforza Castle.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Milan Gay Travel Resources

Queer Inverness in the Scottish Highlands – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , April 25th, 2018

Queer Inverness - The Nomadic Boys

“Stefan your crotch is completely showing under your kilt – be careful!”

Oh crap! Well, you try squatting down trying to position the tripod camera correctly, clad in a Scottish kilt worn “authentically”…!

The Scottish highlands is the stereotypical image of Scotland you imagine, with rolling hills, mountains towering over large glittering lochs and lots of thick lush green woodland. This is the place where the Scottish kilt originated from, haggis is a local specialty and of course a mythical monster resides. These are our 9 best things to do in the Scottish highlands, which you need to add to your Scotland bucket list.

RENT A KILT: and parade around Inverness Castle

Scottish kilts actually originated right here in the highlands near Inverness back in the 1500s. Back then they were traditionally worn in battle by the Scottish Highlanders. Interestingly, they were last worn in active combat in the 1940s during WW2 when the Royal Highland Regiment fought against the German army.

Today kilts are the official national dress of Scotland, worn mainly at state functions, also at weddings, funerals, festivals, and of course by curious tourists… And for anyone wondering, yes, of course we wore them “traditionally” – it would simply be rude not to! You can rent kilts for the day from many shops in central Inverness like Chisholms, then parade around the beautiful Inverness Castle.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

LOCATION Gay Travel Resources

Malaysia: Wonderful Kuching and Bako National Park – Once Upon a Journey

Author: , April 25th, 2018

Bako National Park

We’re welcoming a new lesbian travel blogger this week – Once Upon a Journey.

By bus we travel from Brunei to Miri, but we only stay there overnight. The next morning we catch the early bus to Kuching. It is a long bus ride of 716 kilometres (445 miles) in total. We leave Miri at 7am and we arrive in Kuching at 10:30pm, how crazy? We have lots of rain during the day, so it took longer than expected. We’ll stay in Kuching for almost a week before travelling further to Singapore. We find Kuching is a lovely city and Bako National Park, close to Kuching, is one of the highlights of our world trip so far!

ANOTHER COUCHSURFING EXPERIENCE

Our new couchsurfing host Hamady arranges our pick-up at the bus station. He’s a Senegalese professor who lives in Malaysia. Upon arrival at his home we are welcomed open-armed and with pizza! After the long day we can definitely use some pizza. He lives relatively far away from the city centre, but he tells us we don’t need to worry about transportation: he will fix it for us whenever we need.

The next day we go with him to the University where he works. He researches mosquitos at the University of Kuching and we check out his laboratory. We wander around the University and see his work. Together with a friend of Hamady we go to the supermarket to do groceries, for the BBQ at night. Soon we notice we are used to the Dutch way of BBQ with lots of baquette, vegetables, fruit and different kinds of meat. Still we enjoy the BBQ very much – with lots of meat – and have a fun night together.

By Roxanne Weijer – Full Story at Once Upon a Journey

Malaysia Gay Travel Resources

Queer Austin: Texas’s Weirdest, Most Wonderful City – Gay Star News

Author: , April 23rd, 2018
Queer Austin

Photo: Courtesy Geoff Duncan of Visit Austin

Throngs of delicate, birdlike creatures swarm across a pink-blue sky. Audible gasps abound. Austin, Texas comes alive at night. The same, of course, can be said of its resident urban bat colony.

In spring and summer, on an almost daily basis, 1.5 million Mexican free-tailers soar from under Congress Avenue Bridge into the twilight sky. And you know what they say about nature putting on a show…

Across Lady Bird Lake, another nocturnal animal catches my eye. The Frost Bank Tower – which looks uncannily like a sitting owl – is catching fractions of dying light.

Between the sunset and Downtown Austin’s ultramodern cityscape, not to mention those bizarre winged creatures, I can’t help but think of the famous ‘keep Austin weird’ tagline; of how I never imagined ‘weird’ could mean, well, wonderful. But that’s Austin for you: full of wonderful surprises, from the sheer ubiquity of its live music to its world-class dining.

By Jamie Tabberer – Full Story at Gay Star News

Austin Gay Travel Resources