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Journeywoman's Best Tips of 2007

HER HEAVENLY HATS IN MONTREAL, CANADA -- writes Beth from Detroit, USA -- When I travelled to Montreal I spent a full afternoon browsing on St. Denis Street. So many of the boutiques had original items that I hadn't seen any place else. A wonderful store is Chapofolie that specializes in hats -- everything from hand knitted winter styles to straw hats for the summer. I think other JourneyWomen will really like this place.
P.S. Most shopkeepers in this part of the city speak French but they will switch to English if you don't understand. Address: 3944 St. Denis near Roy. This shop is not open on Sunday morning. They open at 1:00 PM that day.


SCARVES AND RUNNING SHOES IN PARIS? -- writes Nancy from Edmonton, Canada -- I've travelled to Paris several times and a scarf is definitely not a must. It can be a plus, though. It was fun observing how the French women tied their scarves. Then I bought an inexpensive one for myself and tried the same thing. Why not? I guess I did blend in until I had to use my grade three French. Ooops... scarf or not I was no longer a sexy Parisian woman. About not wearing sneakers, I agree that with so many fashionable walking shoes on the market, wearing your athletic running shoes is just not necessary (or sexy).

EDITOR'S NOTE: At Journeywoman, we believe that the way a woman dresses as she moves around the world is very important. It affects her safety. It affects her social interactions. It can make or break her travel adventure. (And, if she packs too much, carrying her bags can make her very tired, very cranky and very vulnerable!) For excellent clothing advice, click here.


CHOCOLATE, CHOCOLATE, CHOCOLATE IN PARIS -- writes Sally from Medford USA -- On the left bank, master chocolatier Christian Constant's boutique and adjacent salon de chocolat are must-visit destinations for exquisite chocolates and patisserie. Located just off the Luxembourg Gardens and close to the shopping delights of St. Germain, Constant is a luminous star in the glorious Paris-chocolate-galaxy. With its select menu of gourmet salads, sandwiches and a hot plat du jour, Constant's tiny salon is a great destination for lunch. And of course, throughout the afternoon the salon is a fine destination for a cup of decadent chocolat chaud, tea, coffee and patisserie or ice cream. Located at 37 rue d'Assas, a street once home to Gertrude Stein, the experience of visiting Christian Constant causes one to wax philosophical about life's serendipities.


B & B IN SIEM REAP, CAMBODIA -- Cindy in Wilton, USA -- I wanted to share with your readers a wonderful place called Journeys Within in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Journeys Within is owned by an American couple; they were travelling through Cambodia several years ago and fell in love with the people and country. They bought a house and land, which has now been expanded to include three bungalows and a pool, surrounded by nicely landscaped grounds. Journeys has a friendly, attentive Cambodian staff. Through them we arranged for a driver and guide to take us to explore the temples at Angkor Wat, a truly amazing experience. Rooms were lovely; breakfasts were delicious and abundant; and rates quite reasonable. In addition to the B&B, Journeys also runs a non-profit organization which is building wells to give Cambodian villages access to fresh water; and providing English classes for youth and adults. We had an opportunity to visit a school where US volunteers were teaching. It added meaning to our trip to learn about Cambodia beyond the typical tourist experience. This would be a great place for woman travelling solo to stay, as we felt like we were staying with a caring family. Find out more at:


SHE PACKS NOTE CARDS FOR A CRUISE -- writes Ellen in Oxford, England -- My girlfriends and I love to cruise and therefore most of our journeys are on the water. We always find the staff on cruise ships are so helpful and attentive to our needs -- be it providing an extra blanket when necessary or delivering a cheese platter if we entertain on our cabin balcony. At the end of the cruise I like to use note cards with scenes from home to write my thank you messages and to enclose any tips I leave for the staff. I'm sure they enjoy the extra effort and it gives me a chance to share with these helpful folks what my city looks like.


A MODERATELY PRICED FRENCH RESTAURANT IN SHANGHAI -- writes Helen from China -- Here's a great lunch tip. In Shanghai there are two Cafe Montmartre Restaurants -- the New Factories address and another on Hong Mei Lu, near Hong Qiao Pearl City. Both are very nicely decorated in traditional French Cafe Style and (very important) have nice clean toilets and washrooms. Each day Cafe Montmartre offers a blackboard menu with choices like venison, rabbit and sole which are no more than $12 per dish -- some even appear under the daily special for $7. If you choose from the blackboard menu -- a beer, glass of house wine or coffee is included as well. My husband takes business clients there regularly as he loves their goose liver pate appetizer.


SO SIMPLE SO SMART -- writes Milly from Don Mills, Canada -- Which lock? Which key? When travelling with several suitcases or bags that need to be locked, mark each lock and accompanying key with a dab of different coloured nail polish. This makes it easy to tell which key applies to which suitcase. Such an easy solution!


One of the nicest notes we received in 2007...

Lyn in Australia wrote:

I've just received my Journeywoman newsletter and thought I'd take the time to say thanks! Late last year, I travelled, with my 15 year old daughter, though Europe for three months. I was very excited about our trip, before we left, but also pretty nervous about travelling for such an extended period of time with my daughter, and feeling very responsible for her etc. Europe felt such a long way from Australia.

I can't tell you how wonderful the Journeywoman site was - how your stories from women were so affirming of my decision to travel alone and how helpful the information I gleaned was in planning our trip.We are now planning our next trip, to Laos and then to Malaysia!!

Thanks again for a wonderful site - some web sites feel commercial and inaccessible. Yours feels connected and authentic and enabling of women travelers.



Create your own first aid kit...

Mark Wise is a Family Doctor in Toronto, Canada who specializes in Tropical and Travel Medicine. He is the Medical Advisor to VSO Canada and the author of Malaria, Montezuma & Me. When not travelling himself, he loves to talk and write about it. We recently asked Dr. Wise to outline for us some of the key items and medical supplies to carry in one's suitcase on wheels or backpack. For his suggestions CLICK HERE

P.S. Remember that any liquids over 3 oz. should go into checked luggage. Prescription drugs and over the counter drugs may be taken on board but they must be properly labelled. For further information CLICK HERE





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