Christmas and More at The Biltmore Estate

By Warren Resen
Photos courtesy of  

Christmas in North Carolina at Asheville’s Biltmore House is a singular experience. Read more


Jamaican Soul

Renée S. Gordon

For a brief orientation on what is most wonderful about Jamaica and its people one need look no further than the Jamaica National Flag. It was designed by a committee of the Jamaica House of Representatives and first flew on August 6, 1962, Jamaican Independence Day. The three colors and four triangles used in the design are representative of the nations’ past and future. Two green triangles on the top and bottom stand for the hope of the people and the country’s agricultural bounty. The gold swaths that separate the triangles embodies the wealth of natural resources and the sunlight that bathes the island in a gilded aura and the two black triangles symbolize the people and their legacy of strength and creativity. Read more


Eastern Europe’s Capital Cities Estonia and Latvia     
Renée S. Gordon

 The Baltic Sea is located in Europe and touches the coasts of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and Russia but the countries most recognized as Baltic countries are Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The Baltic Sea is nearly 150,000-sq. miles in size and 1,000-miles long and for thousands of years people have entered the region to settle, invade, conquer and trade because of its location. Through it all each of the Baltic countries has managed to maintain a separate and unique culture and this, along with modern infrastructure, first class dining and accommodations, and huge swaths of pristine forests and beaches, has jettisoned the Baltics to the top of the list of must-see tourist destinations. Read more


Québec City, Canada    
Renée S. Gordon

In 1985 the Historic District of Old Québec (Vieux-Québec) received the first North American UNESCO World Heritage Site designation as an urban ensemble. The selection was based on its significance to the history of mankind and the importance of the city’s heritage to humanity. A visit to Québec City introduces you to, not only its history, heritage and architecture, but also to its unique European vibe with world class dining, accommodations, entertainment and shopping. Read more

Magical Manchester
by Renee S. Gordon

Manchester’s main shopping district was the scene of an IRA bombing on June 15, 1996.  There were no deaths but more than 200 were injured. Almost immediately Manchester spent more than $1-billion on rebuilding Exchange Square and it is now one of the trendiest shopping areas in the country. Visitors can make purchases in designer boutiques, specialty stores and the largest Marks and Spencer in the world as well as dine in two medieval pubs that were relocated brick by brick. The pubs, Old Wellington and Sinclair’s Oyster Bar, are the oldest structures in the city This district is a shopper’s paradise. Read more

The Biltmore Estate, Ashville, NC
Article  by Warren Resen 
Photos by Jeannie O'Conner

When George Washington Vanderbilt began planning and building his home, which today is still the largest private residence ever built in America, he was a 28 year old bachelor. It took 6 years to complete this 175,000 sq. ft. French Renaissance chateau with 250 rooms, 35 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, 66 servant’s bedrooms, 65 fireplaces and many more features under roof. When it officially opened 120 years ago on Christmas Eve 1895, Mr. Vanderbilt was 35 years old. Read more.

Wilderness Adventure
Article and photos by Kathleen Walls

There is a unique birthday celebration this year. It includes  a link to our natural past and a promise for our future. Instead of the usual cake and candles, it involves, Cracker cattle, cow hunters, lots of swamp filled with cypress knees and trees, saw palmetto and alligators.  It all began in February of 1914 with  a lumberman from  named Edward Vose Babcock.  He saw an opportunity to make money harvesting the cypress and yellow pine that were plentiful near Ponta Gorda, Florida and bought 156,000 acres and began logging the cypress and pine. You can step back in time for 90 minutes  for an in-your-face glimpse the natural world of southwest Florida on the Babcock Wilderness Tour.  Read More

Driving through India
by Warren Resen

 India as portrayed in slick travel magazines, does not exist. A trip to India is not a vacation. It is an experience and should not be viewed by the gentle traveler as a picture post card event. It is nothing like a trip to Europe. It’s too vast. Too ancient. Too complicated. India is sensory overload. The motivation for your visit is critical to what you get out of it.  Read more

Ecuador,  in “The Land of Eternal Spring.”
by Renée S. Gordon  

South America was conjoined with Africa as part of the supercontinent Pangaea until approximately 225 million years ago. When the continents drifted apart South America remained the continent with the largest latitudinal expanse, a land mass that goes from the Sub-Antarctic region to the Tropical Zone and the Andes Mountain Range that extends 4,350-miles. This astonishing continent has been divided into 12 countries but there is none more filled with history, culture, biodiversity and outdoor adventure than Ecuador. Read more

Alternate Route
By Kathleen Walls

Let's face it. No matter how much you enjoy driving, there comes a time when you wish you could relax and "Leave the Driving to us". No, I'm not suggesting you take a Greyhound. But sometimes it's fun to see a new city without having to worry about parking and traffic. That's why trolleys have caught on in a big way.  Read More

Tree Art
by Kathleen Walls

Had you ever stopped to consider a beautifully decorate Christmas Tree as a work of art? Orlando Museum of Art has and each year they offer some of the most beautiful trees in their annual Festival of Trees. This year's theme is  "All That Glitters" Read More

American Roads

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