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March 26, 2009

Video: Best Family Travel Sites on the Net’s Family Travel Guide has been selected as one of the “Best Family Travel Sites on the Net.” Check out the video below (look for us at 1:59!), which is also packed with some other great family-centric sites like and the world-roving blog. Did Trip on a Deal overlook any other can’t-miss family-travel resources? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Related Topics: News · Family Vacation · Travel Videos · Travel Websites

March 16, 2009

Hawaii Tourism Upset Over SNL Skit

By Ben Sumner

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The Associated Press reports that Hawaii's lieutenant governor and some in the state's tourism industry are upset over a Saturday Night Live skit that aired March 7, 2009, claiming that it portrays Hawaii in a negative light. The skit (video below), with professional wrestler Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who once lived in Hawaii, and SNL regular Fred Armisen, is about two poorly paid stereotypical entertainers in grass skirts making the rounds at a restaurant full of tourists. Hawaii's tourism liaison told the Honolulu Advertiser that the skit is "offensive," and with the economy and tourism industry in such bad shape, anything that portrays the state negatively could affect the industry even further. You be the judge. Would you think twice about taking a trip to Hawaii, one of the most beautiful and exotic places in the United States, because of a sketch that makes fun of the divide between Hawaiian natives and tourists?

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Related Topics: From Around the Web · Hawaii Vacation · Travel News · Travel Videos

February 24, 2009

Travel Video: New Orleans Revival

By Karen Chen

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It's Fat Tuesday!  And the American epicenter of Mardi Gras revelry is, of course, the melting pot (or gumbo pot, if you will) of the South: New Orleans. Not only does the city host epic celebrations during Jazzfest and Mardi Gras, but its melange of French, African, and Spanish influences; signature Cajun cuisine; and jazz and blues musical legacy make it one of the country's most culturally interesting, stand-out cities—not to mention just a great place to let loose and have fun (another round of hurricanes anyone?).

To remind us of the city's ongoing reconstruction after the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and to honor the people of N'awlins' vibrant spirit and hometown pride, this week's video features an inside look into the city's revival.  Be sure to watch until the end of the video, when local Chef Paul Prudhomme explains what it is that makes New Orleans so special: "We produce an enormous amount of joy for people. And I don't think there's any other city that has so much devotion to making people happy... It's just a part of who we are."

As the kind supplier of the travel videos posted on our blog, is holding its First Annual "Trippy" Awards, where you can vote for your favorite travel videos. The winner of Filmmaker of the Year will be awarded an all-expenses-paid Yangtze River cruise in China. Check out the nominees and vote before March 1!

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Related Topics: Holidays, Events, & Festivals · Travel Videos

February 12, 2009

Travel Video: Sunset Hike in Santorini

By Karen Chen

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Think of some of the most spectacular places in the world to see a sunset. Chances are a good bunch of you will picture the sun melting into the sea beside volcanic cliffs blanketed with brilliantly white-washed houses. As much hype as the Greek islands get, they no doubt claim one of the best sunset views anywhere—and the reputation ain't for nothing.  Watching the sky turn orange to red to pink over hilly villages made up of narrow cobblestone streets, little white cottages, churches topped with striking blue domes, and black- and red-sand beaches...I don't think there's anything not to like except the scores of other people who've also rushed to vacation here.  But as sunsets and dreamy Greek islands always conjure up notions of romance, in honor of St. Valentine, I give you this week's travel video about the hike to the village of Oia (pronounced "Ia") in Santorini, the island's premier spot to share a sunset drink, dance, or kiss.  Be sure to tell us in the comments section where you've seen some of the most dazzling sunsets of your life.

Watch more Santorini videos at

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Related Topics: European Travel · Travel Videos · Trip Ideas

January 28, 2009

Travel Video: New England Clam Chowdah!

By Karen Chen

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Anyone from Boston will tell you there's no place on earth that makes a good enough "chowdah" to compare to the stuff from back home. Since I'm from Beantown, and believe a steaming, hearty bowl of chowder (topped off with airy Westminster oyster crackers) is good for the soul on cold, blustery days like these, I'm going to be biased and post a video about searching for the best chowder in the Boston area. The host of the video goes right to the source to find the secrets to making the most delicious seafood soup around: the kitchens of Boston institutions and the shores where the seafood is caught. My favorite line of the video, from a clam digger from Ipswich, Massachusetts: "I can't stand these nitwits from New York who put tomato in their chowder." Well said, sir. Keep anything red far away from my chowder. But I'm always one to keep an open mind, so if you know of a place that serves up some mean competition for the title of best chowder, let me know. I'd hope to someday visit and taste for myself.

Watch more Boston videos at

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Related Topics: Food and Drink · Travel Videos

January 14, 2009

Sites We Like:

By Karen Chen

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Sure, guidebooks come in handy when planning a trip, and even more so when wandering the streets of an unfamiliar city. But I learned from my 7th grade English teacher that it's always best to show not tell, and nothing gets me excited to travel quite like videos and films. The people at know this, and have put together some of the best professional and user-submitted travel videos on the Web. Surf more than 3,000 videos hosted by travelers and residents who show you where to eat, where to stay, and what to do in places all over the world—and you know you can trust their advice because, after all, they are there. To encourage people to submit videos, Tripfilms offers rewards like iTunes and Amazon gift certificates after 1,000 views, and—here's the coolest part—a chance to be sent on assignment as one of Tripfilms' vloggers (i.e. video bloggers—I know, I can hardly keep up with the Internet lingo these days).

To start you off into the world of cool travel videos, here's an informational short about where to grab a bite to eat in Paris' Right Bank. My only warning: Too much exposure to these videos may cause you to want to book flights right away...

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Related Topics: European Travel · Travel Videos

May 08, 2008

Video Spotlight: Tibetan Village Project

Culture Warriors: Riders in traditional Tibetan dress (courtesy, Tibetan Village Project)

When he learned of his father's death back home in Tibet in 2001, Tamdin Wangdu was living 8,000 miles away in the United States. Then a student at Colorado University in Denver, the news left Tamdin both distraught and frustrated. Suffering from acute stomach pain for over four days, his father, 57, had died without access to basic health care or being able to reach the nearest hospital, which was a taxing five-day ride from his rural village by horseback. Tamdin's grief, however, gave rise to the hopeful Tibetan Village Project, which seeks to improve the lives of rural Tibetans through better access to health care, education, and basic transportation infrastructure like bridges. The video below, a shortened version of a 2005 documentary by Chris Wallace, highlights the valuable work of this nonprofit.

The Colorado-based Tibetan Village Project also coordinates several voluntourism trips each year to Tibet through its Conscious Journeys program. Dedicated to promoting sustainable development while preserving the rich cultural heritage of Tibet, the two- to three-week trips combine sightseeing and cultural exploration with hands-on, service-oriented interactions with local communities.

If you're interested in learning more about the growing trend in volunteer travel, visit's comprehensive Guide to Volunteer Vacations.

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April 01, 2008

Video Spotlight: Crested Butte Mountain Biking

It's time to retire that winter parka. Even though there's still snow on the mountains, spring has sprung and soon you'll be swapping the skis for the bike. So start plotting your way to Crested Butte, which boasts a lattice of trails sprawling over the valleys and peaks of Gunnison National Forest. Epic rides like pedaling up and over 12,705-foot Pearl Pass before bombing into Aspen make for a perfect warm-weather rite of passage. Below are some more resources to get you rolling on some of North America's sickest singletrack:
The Highs (and Lows) of Colorado Mountain Biking
The Great Divide: Ultimate Three-Day Hiking and Biking Adventures
Top 10 Colorado Adventures
Mountain-Biking Gear Reviews
Crested Butte Mountain Biking Desktop Wallpaper

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March 28, 2008

Video Spotlight: Tuckerman Ravine, New Hampshire

On the east side of New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, the steep slopes and challenging terrain of Tuckerman Ravine draw thousands of visitors each year, determined to carry their skis up 1,400 vertical feet of snow-covered mountain just for one ten-minute run. This year, April 18 to 20, Friends of Tuckerman Ravine is hosting the 2008 Inferno, with individual and team competitions near and on the ravine in five events—running, kayaking, biking, hiking, and skiing. Check out the video above to get in the groove for carving down one of the East Coast's best backcountry shots. Below are some more resources, if you've got the cajones to go for it like these guys in the video:
North American Backcountry Skiing Hot Spots
Avalanche Safety
The Basics of Telemark Skiing
Tuckerman Ravine Desktop Wallpaper

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