Lisa Bonner

Girl On The Fly

Hello World: Girl’s Guide To Solo Travel

There is something to be said for solo travel. While I love the sister-time of traveling with a girlfriend and the allure of #baecation,  solo travel definitely has that X factor, that certain something that you can’t replicate by traveling with another person. There are a million and one reasons why people put off traveling alone, but here are a few reasons to “Just Do It” and a few tips to help you get through your first solo adventure.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Confessions Of A Travel Danger Junkie

Growing up the youngest child, the only girl in my family, heck, the only girl in four generations of my paternal lineage, bestows upon you an incredible feeling of luck, like the gods are watching over you and you are supposed to be here. Living in New York off an on for the last 20 years gives you the sense that you’ve amassed some street smarts over these past two decades. Or I could just be crazy…all are probably true to some degree. Whatever the reason, I have stopped looking for the answer and just accepted, to the horror of friends and family that I am somewhat of a travel danger junkie. Not in the bungee jumping adrenaline junkie kind of way, but my travel choices over the past few years have raised more than a few eyebrows and questions peppered with the phrase “Are you crazy?” have been lobbied at me more times than I can remember.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
[Passport Goals] Bikes And Bordeaux

There is no doubt that for many people, Paris is the darling of France. Rich in culture, draped in gorgeous architecture, and haute couture, what’s not to love? But if you’ve been there done that, here’s a newsflash: there’s so much more to France than just Paris and the Eiffel Tower–like wine, lots and lots of wine.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Travel: South Africa on a Budget From the beach to the bush, and in between.

South Africa may seem like the impossible trip of a lifetime, that one you’re saving for your honeymoon, or saving those coins hoping that someday, maybe, kinda sorta you might find a way to get there. Indeed, halfway across the globe, South Africa seems like a world away, but thanks to the Rand (R) to Dollar exchange rate (at press time, the exchange rate is nearly R15 to $1.00) and summer airfare sales, that illusive trip just got that much closer.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Exploring Key West, Florida’s Hidden Black History

As the southernmost point in the United States, Key West has always been a top tourist destination. An easy three-and-a-half hour drive from Miami, it’s peppered with pastel hued Victorian style houses and has a distinctly Caribbean vibe. Park your car for the weekend; Key West is 4.5 miles long and one mile wide so it’s easily walkable–and that’s a good thing, because Open Bottle laws don’t apply here. If you load up on shopping from many of the cute boutiques on Duvall Street, rent a bike from your hotel or any of the street vendors to explore this little slice of island heaven.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Discover Guadeloupe: European Flair With African Roots

Maybe you’ve heard about this little island in the Caribbean, but in case you haven’t, get ready to add yet another destination to your must-see list. This island is currently having a major PR moment, and for good reason. Guadeloupe is affordable, easy to get to, and a little slice of European heaven set in the crystal waters of the Caribbean.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
[Passport Goals] Beirut is the “Paris of the Middle East”

Somewhere between the news about the danger of Syria, their neighbors to the north, and the threat of ISIS, Beirut has gotten a bad rap. Not many Americans dare visit, and while hesitant at first, I’m glad I did. Located on a peninsula of the Mediterranean Sea, Beirut is the capital of Lebanon, and also its largest city. Once referred to as the “Paris of the Middle East,” Beirut is recovering from a 16-year civil war (1975-1990) that destroyed much of its infrastructure and pitted Muslims against Christians. But this city is definitely on the come up.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Is The Travel Industry Overlooking Black Travelers?

I was sitting in the U.S. Passport Office in downtown New York having a déjà vu.

Under the florescent lights waiting for my number to be called, my mind was trying to think of a way that governments could eliminate these annoying passport booklets. “There has to be an app for this,” I thought.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
10 Reasons To Head to Antigua...NOW!

Give me any reason to take a tropical vacation, but the post-holiday hustle is the perfect time to take that “New Year, New Me” rejuvenation trip. The Caribbean, which is so close to us, is always a good start, but with choices from Aruba to Mexico, how do you narrow them down?

Read More
Tiffany Smith
A Tale of Two Beach Towns: Brazil's Hidden Getaways

A two-hour drive east of Rio, you will find a pair of magnificent beach towns — Cabo Frio and Buzios. Untapped by most Americans, this is where Brazilians go to “summer” or spend their weekends resting, relaxing, and rejuvenating. The warm climate, powdery white sand, crystal blue water, and abundance of vacation rentals and hotels make for an ideal vacation for non-Brazilians, too.

But the best part of these undiscovered jewels is the authentic, local vibe. If you’re looking for a respite from Rio, you definitely won’t regret spending a few days — or your entire vacation — here. I promise, you will thank me later.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Costa Rica Oozes Central American Charm

I landed in Costa Rica’s Liberia Airport ready for some sun and the “ecotourism” I’d heard so much about. After experiencing one of the worst winters in memory, I needed to thaw out. Costa Rica has been on my bucket list since my first trip was derailed last century, and then again in early 2000s, both times because of work. But this time, with New York winter’s wrath wreaking havoc on my sanity, I was more determined than ever to make it to the Central American country.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Find Zen in Southeast Asia

There are no churches here, but thousands of ancient temples are everywhere, which explains why I felt drawn from my pre-dawn prayer over to the window. I stood rapt by the sounds of Buddhist monks faintly chanting somewhere not too far in the distance.

Read More
Tiffany Smith
Colombia Reborn - Writer Lisa Bonner discovers a captivating new Cartegena amidst the slave history of its storied past

I used to be a huge fan of HBO’s Entourage. One of my favorite arcs in the series was when Adrian Garnier transformed his otherwise sexy character into the overweight, sloven Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar for a movie role. I’m a 1980s child, so I vividly remember Colombia’s recent, notorious cartel days. That was Colombia to me… then. But one press trip to Medellin last year changed my mind. Actually, that’s an understatement. I instantly fell in love with it.

 

Read More
Tiffany Smith
To Puglia, with Love

I'm what you call a 'retronaut.' I am actually one of those people who wishes that I could go back in time, back to when life was simpler, illuminated only by candlelight, ruled by kings, queens, surrounded by castles, churches and beautiful architecture. This is one of several reasons why I love Europe so much.

Read More
Tiffany Smith

Cape Town, or the Mother City, is South Africa’s oldest and arguably most stunning city. It lies in a basin at the southern tip of Africa, surrounded by dramatic mountains that rise regally from the waters of the Atlantic Ocean with the legendary Table Mountain standing at its center. This cosmopolitan city has earned the honor of South Africa’s number one tourist destination, and for good reason. The city’s unrivaled beauty, temperate climate, stunning sunsets and historical significance offer something for everyone and ensures that no one leaves disappointed.

Read More
Tiffany Smith