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Travel Babbo

TravelBabbo
Contributions 300
Followers 26,215
Following 157
Intro
Santa Barbara, CaliforniaJoined in Mar 2005
Family travel writer. 97 countries (62 with kids). The 4th most influential traveler in the world according to Forbes. Conde Nast Traveler photo of the year.
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Best hotel entrance ever! Almaha Marrakech is in the medina, down a side street with a barely-marked door. When you knock you’re let into this small room with a check-in desk and a wall of basket-lined shelves. They ask for your passports and then the shelves open to reveal the stunning riad. Thank you to Plan-It Morocco for finding Almaha for us - we loved it!
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Feb 2020
My suggestions of where to travel with kids in Europe - not including the obvious destinations of Paris, London and Amsterdam
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Havana, 6am. This was a quick shot during a pre-sunrise walk around Cuba's capital. It changed my life. When I returned from Cuba I saw that Conde Nast Traveler's $25k Dream Trip contest was open. I entered this photo and, out of 21k entries, won. The prize trip to Florence was amazing, but even better was that I was able to meet Conde Nast's writers, which inspired me to quit my job of 18 years and become a travel writer. Always explore early - you never know what kind of luck will follow!
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We've stayed at a lot of hotels in New York, and more often than not our views have been of brick walls 20 feet away. So I love when we have a room with an amazing city view! This is at Hotel Giraffe (Park/26th) looking towards Madison Square Park. And even better was that we had two connecting rooms for the five of us - not easy to find in the city.
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Jan 2020
I keep seeing posts on St. Augustine! Am thinking it's finally time to plan a trip...
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Jan 2020
For 10 years I've been asking each of my kids where he/she wants to go every year, and we go. They can choose literally any destination in the world for a one-on-one trip with me. We've had some disappointing trips, some ok trips, and some amazing adventures. These are our Top 10 trips. Hopefully there's something here for your own family travel bucket list!
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Just a reminder to head out at sunrise when you travel! I see so many complaints about how crowded cities like Florence get, and they do - in the middle of the day. So at least one morning walk around before the other tourists are awake. It's amazing to have one of the world's great cities largely to yourself!
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Dec 2019
We visit Tuscany virtually every year, so this year I branched out and spent a week in Emilia Romagna. I loved it! Here's what I did that you may want to add to your next Italian trip.
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The view from our room last week at Marsa Malaz Kempinski in Doha, Qatar. We were in town for the FIFA Club World Cup - so fun seeing some of the world's best football teams play. The tournament is in Doha again next year, and then the World Cup will be in Qatar in 2022.
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Balinese offerings on the beach in Seminyak. The offerings, or Canang sari, are placed out daily by Balinese Hindus and they’re everywhere - beautiful and spiritual, but you definitely have to watch your step.
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Our favorite hike in the Faroe Islands this summer? This one, above the village of Gjógv. It wasn't even in our plans, but my son and I looked out from our hotel room and saw people hiking along an upper ridge line. We grabbed water and snacks and started walking. The path went up to the left along the cliff and then ended at other cliffs. Coming down we cut through the sheep pasture that's pictured. And we liked it so much that we did it again the next day. Always fun to be spontaneous...
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I've spent the past few days in Emilia-Romagna Italy exploring Ravenna and Rimini and eating my weight in pasta and seafood. And then yesterday I headed to San Marino - Europe's third-smallest country and completely surrounded by Italy. It's tiny but amazing! This is the view at sunset, standing near San Marino's second tower (Cesta) looking back at the first tower (Guaita). One of my favorite sunsets ever!
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Sep 2019
I get asked all the time for destination recommendations for specific ages. Here are my suggestions, based on travel to 59 countries so far with my kids.
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One of the coolest places I've ever slept! Kolarbyn Eco-lodge in central Sweden is an old charcoal camp - men used to live in these huts year-round making charcoal for the iron industry. ⁣It's not much different now than it was then. Still no electricity. No plumbing. No wifi. We learned how to make fire from a bushcraft expert, then cooked meals over the campfire and lit fires to keep our huts warm. We also went canoeing on the lodge's lake out to a floating sauna. So fun!
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Our jungle bath tub at Bensley Collection - Shinta Mani in Cambodia was even cooler when it was filled with lotus flowers!
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If your resort offers sunset sailboat rides, go for it! In the past month we've gone out on the water at sunset at Soneva Kiri in Thailand and again this week at Loews Coronado Bay in Southern California (pictured). My son even got to steer the boat for a while, which he loved!
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The amazing walkways of the even more amazing Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg.
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We didn't make it to Churchill to see polar bears in the wild, but the Assiniboine Park Zoo in Winnipeg was a pretty cool backup. They take in orphaned polar bears who wouldn't survive on their own. This is in the polar bear tunnel, where you can watch bears swim (and play and wrestle) all around you. We could have spent hours there!
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The best kids club we've ever seen is at Soneva Fushi in the Maldives. There's a pool, water slide, LEGO room, music room, cave with movies and so much more. The coolest kids club architecturally, though, has to be this one - at Soneva Kiri in Thailand. The resort is amazing anyway, but for kids 3-9 or so, the kids club will likely be their highlight. So fun and quirky!
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