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Woman Writers Worldwide Share Travel Secrets

A free guide service in Buenos Aires...

Before visiting Buenos Aires I arranged via email for a free city guide from the Cicerones group to take me around the city. According to the Cicerones website (, these volunteer guides offer to act as 'your friend' while you are in their city. They'll teach you about the country's culture, show you the sites you are interested in, introduce you to restaurants that the locals eat in, help you to locate shops you're looking for, etc. I appreciated my guide; she was very helpful and well-informed about her city. I see this as an excellent service for JourneyWomen whether they are travelling solo or with a companion.

Nancy Wigston is a Canadian travel writer, photographer and reviewer.


Bone carving in Nelson, New Zealand...

When visiting artsy towns, my patience tends to run thin hopping from one gallery to another. I’ve found that a great way to learn about the local art scene is to immerse myself in a hands-on experience. In the town of Nelson on New Zealand’s South Island, a movement called “creative tourism” invites travelers to do just that. I hooked up with a half-day course in bone carving, an ancient Maori art form. The class is taught by Stephen Gilberg, a German ex-pat (and former guitar maker)—he was able to help even the most artistically challenged students (me!) to transform raw white beef bones into elegant, glossy white pendants. From handling wire saws to polishing the carved pieces into gleaming jewelry, the experience allowed me to learn about the culture through a centuries-old art form. Best of all, I had a souvenir to bring home that I created myself.

Sarika Chawla lives in Los Angeles. She is the Managing Editor of Peter Greenberg Worldwide


Wear damp socks...

This is a tip I learned from Journeywoman back in 1994. I tried it and it worked. Wear damp socks on long flights. I know it sounds strange and, if you're chilly on the plane at first, unwelcoming. But try it, the socks are cold and wet, of course, at first but then heat up with body heat and, before you know it, you're wishing they were cool and damp again! Helps prevent feet swelling and, some say, jet lag.

Ann Wallace lives in Toronto, Canada. She is the Editor of The Travel Society Magazine.


Internet booking versus travel agent...

'Bargain' rates offered by non-registered and internet travel companies are alluring but often fictitious – and nearly always non-refundable. For that cheap rate, you'll forgo refunds, changes and cancellation insurance and may be buying time-consuming flights with lengthy airport layovers from third-rate airlines that you'd rather not patronize. You'll forgo the travel agent's personal expertise regarding both your destination and nitty-gritty such as visas, health requirements and hotels. The cut-rate company's much touted customer service and guarantees are too often empty promises and it's next to impossible to speak to a real human being. Use the internet for research; book with a local travel agent.

Isobel Warren is a freelance travel writer from Newmarket, Canada, and author of forthcoming "Travel Safe and Savvy".


Taxi Cabs for women in London...

I'd like to let your readers know about Ladycabs. This company is a licensed London taxi firm that operates just for women and naturally, they only have women drivers to drive women passengers. Their address is: 12 Archway Close, London, N199 3TD Tel: +44 20 7272 3300. Alternatively, the Taxi One number gives you access to 7000 licensed, safe London black cabs - 0871 871 8710 (from inside the UK). These cabs will generally be driven by men.

Rachel Bull is currently beginning her career as a freelance features writer in the UK. Her work includes Time Out city guides in Buenos Aires and London, and she presently writes for the Itchy Travel Guide to London.


I stopped buying souvenirs...

Over the years I've done a lot of travelling. I stopped buying souvenirs long ago. Instead, I send my now grown children and granddaughter postcards. I also send one to myself. It’s like a little diary for me and it lets the kids know I was thinking about them while sitting in a rain forest half a world away!

PJ Thomas is the Editor of Pathfinders - Travel Magazine for People of Color. Website:


Bonus #1! I love my new shoes...

Journeywoman is always on the lookout for shoes that look great and feel great when I do a lot of walking. This season I've worn my Rockport tangerine lace-ups with white stitching everywhere -- for a television appearance, to a surprise birthday party for a girlfriend, a photo shoot, an opening night for a new Indian restaurant in Toronto and shopping in Montreal. They are so very comfortable; I can walk for miles. All the fashionistas I know remark on them and, best of all, they are completely washable. That's a very good thing because I plan to have them on my feet when I go on my upcoming journey to Amsterdam. Style number: APW3373C
These 'hotties' come in other colors (like mahogany and cobalt blue) if tangerine doesn't tempt you.


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