Five Things to do in Tangier

Author: , April 23rd, 2018

Kasbah - Tangier - Keep Calm and Wander

One day in summer, my feet brought me to the streets of Tangier – the city which has influenced the people on their taste in arts, culture, and cuisine from around the world. Tangier is a mix of everything – partly because of the invasions of the Spanish, Muslims, Portuguese, and English.

A great many artists always look for inspiration for their work – and Tangier has served to be just that for many notable personalities, including Paul Bowles, Henri Matisse, William S. Burroughs, Paulo Coelho, Keith Richards, Mark Twain, Tennessee Williams, painter Eugene Delacroix, and many others.

By visiting the city in summer, I understood what brings all the literary and artistic juice of the world here and I’d like to quote it in the words of William S. Burroughs,

“Tangier is on one of the few places in the world where, so long as you don’t proceed to robbery, violence, or some form of crude, antisocial behavior, you can do exactly what you want.”

I literally did what I could. Of course, I cannot talk about the “other things”, ahem, but I can tell you my 5 most favorite experiences there.

1. The Kasbah

I have to say that I really did enjoy my time wandering here. Believe it or not, I spent close to 5 hours, one foot in front of the other. I stopped twice in some old cafes and ordered something strange. While passing through the gate of Kasbah and stepping into the large courtyard and then into the Dar el-Makhzen palace of the 17th century, I could notice how every atom of the place could speak volume of what they have been through. The intricacies of the Moroccan artwork pleased my eyes which changed into ecstasy as I stepped into the Café Detroit which has served to be the rallying point of most of the writers mentioned above.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Morocco Gay Travel Resources

Yucatan Mayan Ruins Off The Beaten Path – 2TravelDads

Author: , April 21st, 2018

Yucatan Mayan Ruins at Coba - 2TravelDads

We love all things history and nature. And Mexico. Although we spend the most time in Baja California Sur there’s something truly unique and wonderful about the Yucatan Peninsula and the state of Quintana Roo. In addition to the pristine waters, wildlife and cenotes, the magical attraction of the Yucatan is the concentration of Mayan ruins, and visiting the Coba Ruins is really a special experience, but you need to know how to visit.

The Coba Ruins are by no means the most famous or most popular ruins on the Yucatan, but they are the most awesome to explore, especially the site called Nohoch Mul, the great pyramid. A visit to the Coba Ruins is a lesson in history, an incredible demonstration in nature, and an intense workout. Of the several sites I’ve visited for Mayan Ruins on the Yucatan, the Coba Ruins was, hands down, the best.

Most people visiting the Yucatan Peninsula arrive either via a flight into Cancun (CUN) or via a cruise ship. That’s how I first visited Quintana Roo, was via the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas. Exploring on my own afforded me much more time to break away from the tourist areas and led me to the best off the beaten path Mayan Ruins on the Yucatan: the Coba Ruins.

By Rob & Chris Taylor – Full Story at 2TravelDadsOURCE

Yucatan Gay Travel Resources

Inside Westminster Abbey – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , April 21st, 2018

Westminster Abbey - Keep Calm and Wander

Take a look inside Westminster Abbey – a royal coronation venue, a religious site and a cemetery. This is the most viral religious structure in United Kingdom. Royals were crowned, wed and buried here, including poets, scientists, and rulers The Westminster Abbey was initially titled “Collegiate Church of Saint Peter”.

Westminster Abbey was a founded by Saint Benedict of Nursia. But in 1539, it was dissolved. It was then given the symbol of a cathedral between 1540 and 1556. Later, in 1560, the structure has now changed from cathedral, rather it holds the symbol of a Church of England called royal peculiar. Which now became a church responsible to the sovereign in a direct form.

The Westminster Abbey hold a lot of important information that makes it a center of attraction for most people around the world.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

London Gay Travel Resources

The Five Villages of the Cinque Terre – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , April 19th, 2018

Cinque Terre - Vernazza

The five fishing villages of the Cinque Terre are the jewels of the crown of Italian Riviera. For any person who has a knack for hiking atop iconic locations that offer an amalgam of views, visiting these jewels is a must. They still exhibit their unique and isolated authenticity just the way they did decades ago when these villages sheltered the Italian peasants and the fishermen.

It is this uniqueness, the unimaginable beauty along with a preserved historic vibe that brought me to these villages. But more than anything the breathtaking coastal or mountain trails had been calling out my name from the very moment I saw their pictures.

By the looks of these villages, one might think that they are essentially identical. However, it is only when you visit them that you get to know that each village has its own charm that would sweep you off your feet.

Starting from the easternmost village and ending on the westernmost, let me share how I found the places and which one owned my heart completely.

1. Riomaggiore

This one is the largest and the most scenic of all the villages. Its scenery begins to dance in full grandeur when the sun starts saying good-bye. The buildings are peculiar, that’s what I liked, and they descend down to the harbor almost as if they’d dive right into the water one by one. While this really gave me a completely new experience, what refreshed my weary nerves were the botanical garden and the bird sanctuary located atop the hill.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Liguria Gay Travel Resources

Gay Belize – The Globetrotter Guys

Author: , April 19th, 2018

Caye Caulker - The Globetrotter Guys

Gay Belize. Not two words we have ever heard put together. As for every destination, we do a quick Google search to see what is available for the LGBTQIA community in that country. Whether this be nightlife, beaches, accommodation or events. However, when we googled ‘gay Belize’, very little came up at all.

We knew there was a community, statistically there must be. We even found a Gay Belize Pride Page on Facebook which has 59k followers. Who knows better about the LGBTQIA community in Belize than an LGBTQIA local? We were lucky enough to find someone willing to answer the questions we had about gay Belize and they provided a very insightful picture.

Read our interview below with Rob*, a 23-year-old local gay male from the Cayo region of Belize.

TGG: What is the stereotypical view on the LGBTQIA community in Belize?

Rob: ”The normal stereotypical view is that many straight men assume that gay guys are feminine. I’ve heard people talk about guys who are not “masculine” enough. Those who embrace femininity are “labelled” gay (it’s just jokes nothing as in physical abuses and stuff like that, although it’s something to not joke about because you can never know if the person is gay and is having a rough time).

Even myself, sometimes I see a guy wearing a pink shirt and I go “ooo interesting”. But that doesn’t mean he’s gay. There are also many gay guys who aren’t feminine. You wouldn’t consider them gay because they are giving you some butch realness, but they are. The same concept and ideologies can be seen with lesbians I would say.”

Full Story at The Globetrotter Guys

Gay Belize Travel Resources

Bolzano and the Dolomites – Dolly Travels

Author: , April 18th, 2018

Bolzano and the Dolomites

Today I want to tell you about Bolzano, in northern Italy. If you are traveling by train up to Bolzano from Bologna or other points south, you will notice a distinct change in the terrain, the look of the villages along the way, as well as the language of the people who live in this area.

Bolzano and the DolomitesAs the train travels further north, the terrain changes, becoming more rugged. Tiny villages are tucked into crevasses between giant mountains. Fields of hay are grown on the more flat areas, then there are apple orchards and vineyards. Some of the best white wine in Italy comes from this area.

This northern part of Italy once belonged to Austria. Most of the citizens here speak German, not Italian. The churches look more like the ones in Austria; in school, the children are taught in the German language. When there is a festival and the citizens dress for that, their costumes are Austrian in design; dirndls for the women, lederhosen for the men. The food, also, is different. The restaurants serve schnitzels, sausages, more potato dishes. While this food is delicious, it is not Italian food, as we know it.

Bolzano and the DolomitesA typical meal in Bolzano and the Dolomites: a ham hock, sauerkraut and a potato dumpling, with stone ground mustard to go with it. Beer is the preferred beverage, and in Bolzano, we found two very good breweries, both with restaurants.

From Bolzano, there is a cable car that takes passengers up to Oberbozen, as you saw in the earlier photo. That area is another very unique place to hike or ride mountain bikes. On one of my trips, some young men took their bikes on the cable car up to Oberbozen, then rode the trails down to Bolzano. There are trails for hiking or biking.

Bolzano and the DolomitesThe earth pyramids. These are unusual rock formations, found in the Oberbozen area. The rocks are unique. I don’t know if there are any of these anywhere else but in this region. Notice the rocks sitting on top of some of the peaks.

Hiking down to see these was a challenge for me, but if I had taken hiking poles, the trek would have been much easier. Hiking up was even more of a challenge.

Bolzano is home of the South Tirol Museum of Archeology, where the main attraction is a preserved body of a man that was found in some glacier ice high up on a mountain near the Austrian-Italian border. After extensive research, it has been determined that the man is over 5,300 years old. The museum is well done, with exhibits on three levels.

Of course, Bolzano, to me, is the jumping-off point for a stay in the Dolomites. I usually stay two nights in Bolzano, for it is an interesting town to me. But from there, I take a bus for a one-hour, exciting trip through winding mountain roads to Castelrotto, in the Trentino-Alto Adige region. I will post just a few pictures here, for the Dolomites will be another blog post or two.

Bolzano and the DolomitesOf course, there were bicycles. The trails are great for biking. I don’t know where that tractor came from, or where he was going.

That is a rare sight. Usually, there are just other hikers or bikers.

So I will say “Goodbye” for now. I will write more about Italy next week.

You can be sure that sometime, before the first of June, I will write about the Dolomites, for there is my “Happy Place”.

Ciao for now,
Dolly

By Dolly Goolsby – Full Story at Dolly Travels

Bolzano Gay Travel Resources

 

Two Days in Cozumel – The Globetrotter Guys

Author: , April 18th, 2018

Cozumel - The Globetrotter Guys

Our friends recommended Cozumel to us, and we are glad they did! Cozumel is a popular stop for cruise ships, and its easy to see why. The island is home to beautiful beaches, dramatic coastlines, adventure activities (including some of the best scuba diving) and some amazing places to eat. Best of all, if time is tight, you can get around the entire island in less than a day! We spent 2 days in Cozumel and here is what we think you should do to make the most of your time! (You can see our short video of all the action here).

Scuba Diving

Home to the start of the second largest coral reef in the world, the great Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, Cozumel is a mecca for scuba diving.
It is well known that Cozumel has beautiful, bright coral, a diverse range of stunning marine life and crystal-clear waters. After our visit, we could not agree more.

Back in 2011 we completed our PADI Open Water qualification in Koa Tao. This meant we could do what is known as a fun dive (your equipment is set up and you just follow the dive master). We completed two dives during our stay and can definitely see why people make a special effort to come here instead of diving from Cancun or Playa del Carmen.

The water truly was crystal clear, you could see straight down to the bottom (about 22m) from the boat. We saw multiple loggerhead turtles, lionfish, beautifully coloured parrot fish, and most exciting of all, 3 eagle rays.

Full Story at The Globetrotter Guys

Yucatan Gay Travel Resources

Mesmerizing Meknes – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , April 16th, 2018

Meknes - Keep Calm and Wander

Meknes is an ancient place in Morocco that most tourists would pass by, in favour of the nearby Fez. Most tourists who go here are day trippers from Fez. They combine their day trip to Meknes with Moulay Idriss and Volubilis, an ancient Roman city. And that’s exactly what I did. I joined a 4-person tour organized by my hostel in Fez. Meknes was our last stop of the day – and we explored the city for 4 hours!

Why Meknes?

a. It is by far cheaper than the neighboring Fez

b. I loved the serenity and less-frenetic ambiance of the city

Related Post: The Roman Ruins of Volubilis

Related Post: Moulay Idriss is the Birthplace of Islam in Morocco

1. Bab al-Mansour

Bab in Arabic means “gate”. I must say, I hadn’t seen a gate so colossal and grand like this one. I have a feeling that it could be the largest gate in the whole of the continent. No, I’m not over-exaggerating, it is! In fact, experts deem this gate as one of the few gigantic structures that have survived in North Africa.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Morocco Gay Travel Resources

Queer Toronto: Five Must-See Events – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , April 16th, 2018

Queer Toronto - The Nomadic Boys

Toronto is one of the most exciting gay destinations in Canada. It has an awesome gay scene, and like the gay events in Montreal, it also has its fair share of gay events taking place each year.

These are our 5 best gay events in Toronto you should consider checking out and planning your trip around.

FEBRUARY IN QUEER TORONTO: Rhubarb Festival

The Rhubarb Festival is Canada’s longest-running new works festival, taking place at the awesome Buddies in Bad Times theatre in the gay village of Toronto. It is a 10 days festival every February, which started in 1979. It has since grown from strength to strength each year, and is today funded partly by the government, partly by private sponsors.Rhubarb is a festival where artists explore new possibilities in theatre, dance, music, and performance art. This is the place to come and see the most adventurous ideas in performance. During the festival there are around 3/4 shows taking place, and no two nights of Rhubarb are ever alike.  For more information, check out the Rhubarb archive on the Buddies in Bad Times website.

By Stefan Arestis – Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

Queer Toronto – Gay Travel Resources

Visiting the Tower of London

Author: , April 13th, 2018

Tower of London - Keep Calm and Wander

Approximately 952 years ago, the Tower of London was built by William the Conqueror to keep any hostile intruder at bay. Now, as we see it, it still stands tall and proud. As a matter of fact, there are hordes of reasons why you need to visit it as soon as you have spare time. It’s just a few steps from that very photogenic bridge you see in London postcards – the Tower Bridge!

I explored every inch of the building and without splitting my hair much (because I’m bald :D), I gathered the following 11 reasons to make you pay a visit, too.

1. Have a look at the dazzling trinkets

Have you ever heard about the Cullinan I also called the Great Star of Africa, Cullinan II, and the Koh-I-Noor? If you have, it could be your once-in-a-lifetime chance to lay eyes on these magnificent Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom. Not only these, in fact, you’d get to see all the 140 ceremonial objects that are on the display. Believe me, when I say this: I was literally drooling over when I saw them.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

London Gay Travel Resources