Even in the frigid cold of winter, you'll find luxury and relaxation in a rather unexpected place—Wisconsin. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported today that adults-only getaway Sundara Inn & Spa has expanded to twice the original size to keep up with demand for this wellness-centered retreat. The additional 40,000 square feet of oohs and ahhs includes an indoor/outdoor pool, new hiking trails, a Zen garden, and more spa rooms to accommodate more massages, facials, and other beautification and relaxation services. So snag a flight to Milwaukee or Madison, make the short drive, and get ready to experience the Midwest in ways you've likely never dreamed possible. I know I haven't!
When it comes to traveling like an adult, there's one brand that seems obvious to avoid: Disney. But that would be as flat-out wrong as Donald Duck never wearing pants. Adventures by Disney offers multiple destinations via river cruise or land excursion with several dates to choose from for each. For 2019, 7 different exotic locales can be visited if you're an adult 18 or over. South Africa, Costa Rica, Amsterdam, Budapest, San Francisco, and Southern California can be booked starting at only $1549 per person for vacations from three to 10 days.
Maybe it's time we get larger sized embroidered mouse ears.
Is it wrong to be counting down the days to 2021? That's when Richard Branson's first adults-only cruise ship is set to debut. The vessel, recently named the Scarlet Lady, promises to completely redefine cruise travel from the completely non-cruise-like interiors and a cavalcade of grownup activities from stern to bow. Just look at one of the first released images of one of the suites (above). If you've been on other cruises, you'll immediately recognize that these aren't the cheesy, cramped interiors of The Love Boat days.
Event the normally cramped, super-ugly bathrooms of typical cruise ships get a super-sexy upgrade. For more recently released renderings of what you can find in the onboard suites, check out these other Virgin Voyages images.
Images courtesy of Virgin Voyages
Photo courtesy of Admire Entertainment
Who's up for the trashiest, raunchiest, possibly most entertaining vacation of the year? I know I am. Returning September 13-16, 2019, Camp John Waters takes over Camp Getaway for an adults-only weekend of campy camping. The all-inclusive experience features meals, activities and traditional tent camping, glamping, or cabin accommodations starting at $499 per person. Alcoholic beverage packages can be added on, as well as roundtrip transport via motor coach from New York City to the Kent, Connecticut campgrounds.
Photo courtesy of Camp Getaway
In addition to traditional camp activities, special events include a John Waters Costume Contest (judged by John Waters himself), a themed dance party, bedtime stories read by John Waters, a film marathon of his greatest hits, a John Waters one-man show, a Q&A with meet-and-greet, Hairspray karaoke, Bloody Mary bingo, campfire songs and s'mores, and so much more. Celebrity camp counselors for this trip will be Ricki Lake, Mink Stole and Pat Moran.
Photo courtesy of Camp Getaway
If you're the type to bring your own tent, go for it. As for me, glamping or a private cabin seem like the best bet. Cabins are co-ed unless you book a full cabin for you and your friends, which is easy to do with cabins set up to accommodate two, three, four or six people.
Sounds Divine to me.
Photo by Coeur d'Alene Resort
The idea of timeshares makes me cringe—except in this instance. When temperatures drop this January in Idaho, the popular lakeside Couer d'Alene Resort transforms its infinity pool into a giant hot tub for Hot Winter Nights, a unique experience for beyond-frigid evenings. Here's what's great about it: From 4:00 to 8:00 p.m., the experience is family-friendly. But promptly at 8:00 p.m., the children will be asked to leave as it becomes an adults-only oasis in the falling snow, complete with a DJ and cocktails.
Reading about this event brought up a point I've made to hoteliers on several occasions and even mention in this review of Travaasa Hana. If a property doesn't have a dedicated adults-only pool, hot tub or other experience, for Pete's sake, create one! Adults will appreciate the gesture of a designated time of their own, while those traveling with children won't feel like they're being denied access to a killer view or other unique selling point. Plus, any time a hotel or resort can guarantee a 21-and-over crowd, they could benefit tenfold in liquor sales. Heck, that could happen even if it's just me sitting in that pool all by my lonesome.
The global kid-free trend seems to only be getting underway and I, for one, am so excited. Again, it's not the children that drive me crazy as much as it is the parents who let their children drive people crazy. So I don't think it's too much to ask for the occasional adults-only restaurant or bar. (You'd be surprised how many toddlers I've seen circling me and my martini in taverns around the world.)
Now, there's a coffee bar in Ireland where the only anxiety you'll get is from too much caffeine. The Old Barracks Coffee Roastery and Coffeebar poured its first cup in July 2018 and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Check out the full story on this Tipperary gem over at The Nationalist. Then share with all your friends who own coffee houses or anyone at the corporate level over
Image courtesy of Viking Cruises
The tides, they are a-turning. Score a new victory for adults-only travel thanks to the latest news from Viking Cruises. As of August 1, 2018, nobody under 18 can cruise on a Viking River Cruise. Those young ones already booked before August 1, of course, won't be affected. But if you've been waiting for a good reason to give a Viking River Cruise a try, I can't imagine a more perfect time. Bon voyage—and leave the kids at home!
I always say that no matter what I forget to pack, it doesn't really matter as long as I have my passport and my phone when heading to another country. Anything else can be purchased when I get there. Yet on a trip to Mexico City this summer, I discovered an app that forever increased my ability to communicate with others and navigate all the many Spanish words not in my mostly food-related vocabulary.
Google Translate has been a valuable internet tool for years now, but I never knew there was an app—even though they've been around since 2010 for Android devices and 2011 for Apple iOS. But the updates keep getting better and better and the space-age technology is truly amazing. Currently, you can use the app to translate more than 100 languages, 37 of which can be doing via photo, 32 by your own voice (or someone who's speaking to you), as well as 27 languages in real-time augmented video. This is the mode that really blew my mind.
In augmented video mode, you simply point your camera at a sign, menu or almost anything, really, that has clean, block lettering. The app instantly translates and changes what you see on the screen. So cool!
As you should expect, it's not 100% accurate, but pretty darn close. And unlike expensive designated translation devices hitting the market, this one's 100% free.
Or as they say in Mexico, gratis.
Google Translate for Android: Download here.
Google Translate for Apple iOS: Download here.
I always just assume everyone who's a member of an airline rewards program obsesses over ways to maximize earning the way I do. But apparently, I'm an insatiable miles whore. I always want more, more, more.
Of course, the traditional way is to simply earn air miles for flying your favorite airline, but racking up enough miles to get a free trip can take forever if you're not a frequent traveler. If you want to really see your miles explode, a credit card dedicated to your rewards program will get you free trips lightning fast. But one of my favorite ways to earn rewards is through Rewards Network restaurant programs. Simply choose your preferred airline program (American, Southwest, Delta, Jet Blue, Spirit, Alaska or United) then register every credit or debit card you have. Yep, even the non-airline ones.
A huge list of participating restaurants offers you points simply for dining. Dine often enough and get VIP status, which gets you even more points per dollar spent. For example, I have the American Airlines program and I earn five miles per dollar at every restaurant (even my favorite yogurt shop). To date this year, I've accumulated an extra 3,000 AAdvantage miles for dining out—something I would've done anyway. What's even better, I often get an alert that I earned hundreds of miles at a restaurant I didn't even realize was part of the program, often in a city I was visiting on vacation. If you're strategic and only seek out restaurants that offer miles when head out to eat, you could easily earn enough for a free round-trip in less than a year.
It's easy, delicious, and—unlike the free flight you're trying to earn—you don't have to get stuck in a middle seat.
Just like our travel reviews, every product or service you'll find here has been personally tested and included only because of its excellence.