Tag: TCW Travel Connection

Let friends—and friends-of-friends—hook you up with other pals on your next overseas trip

¡Hola, salut et ciao, UrbanTravelGirls!!! Lo siento, je suis desolé, et mi dispiace–in short, my apologies for having gone off the grid for awhile. My freelance consulting and writing has kept me très busy the past several months, but I promise that I’m back, ready to inspire my chicas to experience the world and let it experience THEM!!

Since I last wrote, I’ve had incredible experiences in Panama City, Panama, and am counting on loads more of overseas trips in the near future. (More on that later!) But I’ve also been living vicariously through the adventures some of YOU ladies have been having this summer… which leads me to this post. None of us is an island—and neither should we be, even when we love hitting the road solo (as you know I do). It’s one thing to visit a city or country on your own, but quite refreshing to see it through the eyes of those who live there. And even if you don’t happen to know anyone in Amsterdam or Hong Kong or Cape Town, chances are someone that you know DOES. That’s why it’s a great idea to find out in advance if folks you know have any local connections in the place you’re heading….

Continue 6 Comments October 16, 2011

Gorgeous ‘Cairo Time’ makes me want to pack my bags for Egypt

After spending almost NO time at the cinema this summer, I’m on another film kick. Forget “Eat Pray Love” as the so-called thoughtful “chick flick” of the season. For me, the UrbanTravelGirl must-see movie is “Cairo Time,” an absolutely breathtaking film that places the ancient-yet-modern and chaotic Egyptian city of Cairo in a starring role.

I recently raved about “Cairo Time” in “TCW Travel Connection,” the blog I write for the monthly Today’s Chicago Woman magazine. (I hope you’ll check it out!) But beyond making me think long and hard about the movie’s central premise—that “sometimes you need to forget the rules and follow your heart”—and inspiring me to see it twice, this travelogue of a film has me SERIOUSLY thinking about booking a trip to Cairo….

Continue 17 Comments September 8, 2010

Want the REAL scoop on ‘Black Paris?’ A new guidebook from a Chicago sister shares its secrets

As you UrbanTravelGirl readers know, Paris is my favorite place on the planet. Someone this week asked me why I love it so, and I didn’t have to think long before responding, “The diversity.” Sure, Paris is THE quintessential French city, but a huge part of what makes it so special for me, an African-American woman, is the presence of black folks from throughout the Diaspora. You’ll meet black folks from African former French colonies including Togo, Senegal, Mali, and Côte d’Ivoire. From French Caribbean “overseas regions” such as Martinique and Guadeloupe. And black American expatriates from all over the States.

And whereas most “mainstream” travel guidebooks gloss over their presence (if they mention them at all), Chicago author Kiratiana Freelon jumps all over it in her new book, Kiratiana’s Travel Guide to Black Paris: Get Lost and Get Found (http://kiratianatravels.com/). An African-American Harvard grad who’s visited more than 25 countries in her young life and spent time living in Paris, she uncovers GREAT finds all over Paris (and beyond, as well)….

Continue 9 Comments June 12, 2010

Let travel take you outside your comfort zone

I promise I’m going to write about “Black Chicas and Hair, Part Deux,” but I thought a post I included on my other travel blog, “TCW Travel Connection” (http://bit.ly/6KTkZV) for Today’s Chicago Woman magazine (http://www.tcwmag.com) would make a good introduction to 2010. For the past couple days, I’ve been reflecting and ruminating on the year that was (and thankfully is now OVER) and the year I’m hoping to have. And one thing I’ve promised myself is that I’ll consciously take risks. That I’ll make decisions that are scary but that offer huge long-term potential. And that I’ll remember this one life is NOT a dress rehearsal, and that none of us get a “do-over.”

Maybe part of it has to do with arriving in my 40s (God willing, I’ll turn 41 in a few days) and the realization that life is short. And that I don’t want to look back as an old woman with a list of “woulda-coulda-shouldas.” Hopefully you don’t want to do that, either.

So take a look at this post on letting travel take you outside your “comfort zone,” whatever that is for you. Here’s wishing you a year full of great trips and adventures – I’m looking forward to sharing them with you. And Happy New Year!

Continue 3 Comments January 1, 2010

Want to travel the ‘world’ without leaving the United States? Visit Las Vegas

Times are tough, and even us diehard globetrotters are finding ourselves grounded these days. But there ARE ways to travel the world without leaving the borders of the United States. In a recent post for my “TCW Travel Connection” blog, which I write for a great local monthly magazine called Today’s Chicago Woman (http://www.tcwmag.com), I’ve written about “going global” by sampling fare at ethnic cafes and restaurants, checking out foreign films, soaking up the sounds from other lands, etc.

But surprisingly, you can ALSO take a trip around much of the world by visiting Vegas. YES, Las Vegas. Even this most American of cities offers something for the global traveler in you….

Continue 4 Comments November 12, 2009


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