Travels of Adam: Berlin By Boat – Photos from the Spree

Author: , May 25th, 2015

Adam GroffmanRecently I was invited by Hannes from one of Berlin’s newest boat tour operators, Berlin Liquide, to experience an afternoon out on the River Spree.

After having lived here for a number of summers, I’ve spent a lot of time hanging out by the river (as you do in Berlin), but this was my first opportunity to actually get on a boat and see Berlin from a different perspective. We were lucky that this autumn was relatively warm in Berlin, plus the sun managed to stick around for a lot of the season.

Hannes is a friendly German guy that speaks perfect English and his boat, suitable for 12 people, provides the perfect setting for a half-day tour of Berlin.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: Berlin By Boat: Photos from the Spree.

LOCATION Gay Travel Resources in Germany

Travel for Food – The Importance of Food in Tourism

Author: , February 13th, 2015

Mexican Food in BerlinLet’s talk about food. It’s pretty much my favorite thing in the world (that’s like only a 20% exaggeration). Over the years, I’ve noticed my passions and my interest transition from other things like bands and music to food and restaurants. I’d rather save up 30[euro] to try a new restaurant than I would to go see a band. I’m not sure how or why the transition took place, but it has. And, though it was always a reason why I travel, food has become one of the most important. So much so, it seems, that I traveled to Poland last weekend just to eat some pierogies. The things we do.

Increasingly, I’ve found food to be one of the deciding factors when choosing a new place to visit. It’s probably why I find myself returning to Italy at least once per year. But food isn’t just the reason why I might travel somewhere, it’s also the only souvenir I bring back, and it’s the taste and the smell that always brings me back even when I’m long gone. That’s what happened the other weekend. A series of events which all triggered specific travel memories, thanks to the food I ate. And like any good story, this one starts with a burrito.

Berlin and the Burrito Craze

Naturally, when I decided to move to Berlin, my biggest concern was to do with the food. Well, the language too — but I figured I’d always find a way to get over that hurdle. German food was always mildly interesting to me — Sausage, yumm. Potatoes, yumm. — but that was about all I knew. I learned later that there’s much more to German food, but it doesn’t matter much here…I’m still stuck with the oh-so-American burrito addiction. I just can’t get enough of them.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: Travel for Food – The Importance of Food in Tourism.

My Year in Travel: The Best Places for Gay Holidays

Author: , February 7th, 2015

Scotland - Adam Groffman

Sorry for the radio silence here, but after having returned home to the USA for the holidays, I’ve had a lot of time to think and to reflect — mostly about the past year and a bit about the future. And in making some of my plans for 2015, I’ve thought a lot about the past year. Namely the fact that it’s probably been my gayest year ever. Is that even a thing? Who knows. I don’t care. But I feel like this was an important year for gay rights, and also for my own interest in gay travel.

Gay travel?!

Yeah, that topic again. Travel is travel, yes. But this year I’ve also realized just how many of my own trips and experiences are almost certainly chosen because of my own sexual preference. Where I’ve traveled to isn’t necessarily anything to do with the fact that I’m gay, I guess, but these are the places that I’ve found that are actually great for other gay travelers like myself–either solo or for gay couples. I never thought I’d be the guy who ended up going to (and actually enjoying!) stereotypically gay destinations, but hey, here I am. Over the past year, I’ve just realized that I like to travel to places where other gay travelers tend to migrate to. I’m all for venturing out to further places, but every now and then, I just need a gay holiday…

BEST PLACES FOR GAY HOLIDAYS

SCOTLAND

Scotland may be cold and often wet, but it’s also got one of Europe’s best scenic countrysides. Scotland recently legalized gay marriage so I was pretty excited to spend last New Year’s Eve celebrating in Edinburgh, just as the topic had started to make big news in the country. From what I could find, Edinburgh didn’t seem to have much of an established gay scene. I didn’t even go to a single gay bar while there, but the city’s impressive arts and cultural scene sated my interests. And gay-owned companies like Black Kilt Tours offer private tours and itinerary suggestions to make trips just a bit more special.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: My Year in Travel: The Best Places for Gay Holidays.

The Accidental Expat

Author: , January 22nd, 2015

Adam GroffmanOne of the most popular questions (here’s the full list, if you’re curious) I get from followers and friends is about my choice for staying in Berlin long-term. How did I choose Berlin? Why did I want to stay? Why haven’t I returned to the USA?

Considering the fact that Germany had never even been on my bucket list, when I landed in Berlin on a cold summer night in June 2011, I never really expected to stay long myself. And yet, as I’ve retold a hundred million times, that week turned into a month, that month into six more, and then, before I knew it, it was 2014. And now it’s almost 2015. And there’s no end in sight.

I found it hard to commit to Berlin at the time, that first summer. I had this deep, intense love for the city (and more than a few boys I’d met on that first one-week holiday), so it was only natural to stay. But to keep staying? That took some commitment.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: The Accidental Expat.

Germany Gay Travel Resources

Berlin by Boat

Author: , January 18th, 2015

Adam Groffman in Berlin

Recently I was invited by Hannes from one of Berlin’s newest boat tour operators, Berlin Liquide, to experience an afternoon out on the River Spree. After having lived here for a number of summers, I’ve spent a lot of time hanging out by the river (as you do in Berlin), but this was my first opportunity to actually get on a boat and see Berlin from a different perspective. We were lucky that this autumn was relatively warm in Berlin, plus the sun managed to stick around for a lot of the season.

Hannes is a friendly German guy that speaks perfect English and his boat, suitable for 12 people, provides the perfect setting for a half-day tour of Berlin. The private boat tours can be focused around one of four different themes and Hannes has done a great job of showcasing some of Berlin’s best alternative parts in his tours.

On this particular tour, we departed from the boat’s dock at Kaisersteg in Schoeneweide (easily reached from the S-Bahn) and spent the next three hours on a blissful boat ride through the eastern half of Berlin. Is there anything better than being on a boat?!

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: Berlin by Boat.

Germany Gay Travel Resources

Berlin’s Bauhaus-Inspired Hotel: Ku’ Damm 101

Author: , January 10th, 2015

Ku’ Damm 101 hotel

While working on my updated Berlin city guide, I spent a lot of time looking up Berlin’s hotels. And thanks to an introduction from the helpful folks at visitBerlin tourism, I was introduced to the Ku’ Damm 101 hotel. It’s located in the western part of Berlin, along the famous Ku’damm street (Kurfurstendamm).

The Ku’ Damm hotel is a budget-friendly hotel, but not a boring one. When you first walk in the lobby, you might feel like you’ve entered a spaceship. The design of the hotel has been inspired by the works of master architect Le Corbusier. He wasn’t actually a Bauhaus teacher in Weimar or Dessau, but his work was a huge inspiration to the design movement.

And in the Swiss-designed Ku’ Damm 101 hotel, the design is easily apparent. Simple, bold lines in the architecture of the hotel provide accent (with color!) to help define the space. Rooms are very spacious, as well and I especially loved the spot-colored chairs in the hotel room.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: erlin’s Bauhaus-Inspired Hotel: Ku’ Damm 101.

LOCATION Gay Travel Resources in Germany

On Traveling

Author: , November 4th, 2014

Berlin Sweepstakes

I started writing travelsofadam.com one autumn day in Boston five years ago. I remember that first month of travel blogging well, just after a trip to Iceland that changed my life. I was working full-time for one of the world’s largest book publishers and spending my evenings at various cafes writing, editing and learning all that I could about blogging and online marketing. Everything about it was exciting and exhilarating. As I was saving up my money for more future travels and planning dream holidays, I was also learning new skills, practicing old ones, and spending a lot of time daydreaming about destinations all over the world.

At that point in my life I was already fairly well-traveled. Especially considering I’d spent a year of my life studying abroad in Australia and the UK. But at age 25 it’d already been three years since I’d left on an international trip. I started the blog as a way to share my travel tips. I’d already been a long-time Twitter user but 140 characters just wasn’t enough space to share everything I had to say about traveling.

Five years later, travelsofadam.com has become more than I ever imagined. Every day I receive emails from other travelers looking for personal tips or advice, asking questions about Berlin, how to live abroad, what to do in foreign cities and how to save up for trips. I love hearing inspiring stories from other travelers and seeing how this little blog (that started in a JP Licks ice cream store) has inspired others to travel now, not later. Traveling has had an empowering effect on me, forcing me out of my comfort zone and changing my life in more ways than I can count.

And now, with a completely redesigned blog, I’m able to share the experience of a trip with one lucky reader. To celebrate five years of travelsofadam.com and the launch of my Hipster City Guides, I’ve partnered with airberlin and Visit Berlin to give one person (and his/her friend, mom, boss…) a trip to Berlin from the United States. With airfare for two people and four nights in a 3* hotel, you’ll get to experience the thrill of travel. Why Berlin, though? Well, besides the fact that it’s my absolute favorite city, Berlin is a wonderful place to be born again (and that is what traveling is all about).

Enter by 11/30/14 here.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: On Traveling.

Do I Belong Here?

Author: , November 1st, 2014

Photos by Alexander ArayaDo you ever have those days where you question everything? Where you wonder: is this me? Is this my life? What am I doing here? Do I belong here? I think it’s healthy to ask these kinds of questions – not everyday of course, but sometimes a little bit of self-doubt can be helpful.

As you may have noticed from the tone of recent blog posts, the past few months haven’t been the easiest. As Berlin weather changes from summer to autumn, (and with a plane ticket to London on Sunday…just for a holiday–don’t worry!), I find myself wondering yet again–what am I doing here? I came to Berlin just over three years ago during an Eurotrip where I was planning to move to London. In Berlin, though, I met a boy. Well, several boys. As you do. And then I discovered there were lots of other foreigners living in Berlin. And that the German language wasn’t as scary as I first thought. And that Berlin is just so damn cool.

I found it impossible to leave Berlin after having spent just a week here. But Berlin had never previously been in my sights. And having lived in a handful of foreign cities as a student, an intern or a young adult, today I find myself wondering if this is the city that was actually meant for me. Germany wasn’t my favorite country. German food isn’t my favorite international cuisine. And the language. Well, let’s just say it wasn’t the easiest to learn.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: Do I Belong Here?.

Germany Gay Travel Resources

Photos by Alexander Araya

Paris on Instagram

Author: , October 31st, 2014

Paris on Instagram - Adam GroffmanLast month I visited Paris for the first time in seven years. What I found was a city as picture-perfect as it always was. I don’t think there’s ever been a city so picturesque!

But besides the obviously iconic images of Paris (looking at you Eiffel Tower), the city has plenty of hidden gems which provide equally beautiful backdrops. Visiting my sister in Paris, some of my favorite places for Instagramming were the following:

Latin Quarter – Lively at night, near Notre Dame Cathedral and books for sale EVERYWHERE. Along the river, booksellers have small wooden boxes that sit along the railing which are full of used books. I’m not sure if there are any studies on this or not, but Paris must be one of the world’s most literary cities.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: Paris on Instagram.

Paris Gay Travel Resources

The Magic of London

Author: , October 22nd, 2014

London Street Art - Adam GroffmanLondon, one of my favorite cities in the world. I lived there briefly in 2006 and these days, living in Europe, I visit it frequently. And even with all the time I’ve spent in London, I’m still enchanted by its magic. It’s not only the historical and cultural relevance of the city, but maybe more charming? The daily life. No matter where you are, London comes to you. In the news about royal babies, economic crisis, in the dark avenues filled with Sherlock Holmes’ adventures and even in the post-apocalyptic scenarios of movies like 28 Days Later. (Yes, zombies love London too! Scary, but smart!)

My last trip was already several months ago, but I remember why I love London so much. It’s the rhythm of the automatized wandering in the Tube, the smells of the Indian restaurants on Brick Lane, the relaxing atmosphere of walking along the Thames. I’ve done lots of things in London, from visiting the Globe Theater and enjoying both comedies and tragedies of William Shakespeare.

I’ve seen one of the best musicals: Wicked! And I would see it again and again and again. And again! I love to get lost in London’s museums (most of them work with donations) and I’ve been lucky to spend hours admiring paintings from Rothko to ancient pieces recovered (or stolen) from faraway places.

This article was written by Adam Groffman, author of the internationally popular travel blog, Travels of Adam. Read more here: The Magic of London.

London Gay Travel Resources