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Gay Travel Dispatch of the Day: Breakaway Backpacking in Patagonia

Breakaway1
(breakawaybackpacker - instagram)

This new series features dispatches from LGBTQ travel writers, bloggers, and photographers who are on the road in far-flung places. If you know somebody who should be featured here, send us an email at travel@towleroad.com.

"Breakaway Backpacker" Jaime Davila is currently trekking through Patagonia and taking some obscenely beautiful photos along the way. Davila, 29, publishes at Breakaway Backpacker and on his Instagram and is currently on his second trip around the world, with no return date, after quitting his job and cutting his ties with corporate America.

MoretravelIt's basically what many of us dream of doing but just don't for whatever reason. Says Davila: “Life is short…why not do what makes you happy and let others do what makes them happy too.” Sounds like a pretty good philosophy.

So Davila now finds himself in Patagonia. Patagonia sits at the southern tip of South America and is a region shared administratively by Chile and Argentina.

Writes Davila of the top photo:

"EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeee PENGUINS!!! This was one of the things I was most excited to do when I arrived in Ushuaia. You can take a tour that takes you to an island full of penguins. It's expensive ($107), but so worth it. This was my face when I arrived on the island. I couldn't stop "EEEeeee-ing" in my head jajajajaja. Can't wait to share photos of these cute little creatures. PS took this with my P&S but wanted to share my excitement before so shared it here lol."

Davila is backpacking in Tierra del Fuego National Park.

Davila on Instagram: "2 of the 4 King Penguins on the island. King Penguins don't normally visit Martillo Island, but for some reason 4 of them have showed up and have been there a few weeks. I never thought I'd see King Penguins in the wild unless I went to Antarctica but nope there they were. I got lucky. They're so fucking beautiful and stunning. Also a lot bigger than the Magellanic Penguins that are normally the only ones on the island"

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Check out some more of Davila's stunning photographs, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Caption: "I finally made it to my camp site 8 hours later. Yeah that's how long it took me to walk 25km (15.5miles) through lots of up and down terrain. The views were stunning as you can see from my previous photos. I was exhausted had dinner and before going to sleep wanted to see the lake & just sit down and enjoy the view. That didn't happen though cus a storm was coming in and the wind was crazy. So yeah just went to sleep cus I had been up since 3am and the next day I had another 25km (15.5miles) walk to my next camp. Oh day 3 was my worst day. It broke me & well will share more with photos tomorrow. PS the color of the water is just a stunning shade of blue. Can't get over it."

Continue reading "Gay Travel Dispatch of the Day: Breakaway Backpacking in Patagonia" »


Traveling with Fashion: Into the Woods in Tenerife with Fran Otero — VIDEO

Otero

Men's fashion brand Modus Vivendi takes us on a trip to Tenerife, the largest and most populous of the seven, volcanically-formed Canary Islands of Spain, in the new campaign for its Bear Line of underwear, starring model Fran Otero and photographed by Adrian C. Martin.

MoretravelThe campaign was shot in the stunning Esperanza forest, often foggy because it is up a mountain close to the cloud zone where the moisture creates the lush green moss so prominent in the photos and video. Tenerife also boasts the third tallest volcano in the world (measured from the base on the ocean floor), Mount Teide, which is protected as a National Park and World Heritage Site. It most recently erupted in 1909 and remains active.

The Canary Islands are also a popular destination for gay and lesbian European tourists, who head there for the beautiful beaches. With this kind of natural beauty to be found, who can blame them.

Check out the full campaign video featuring Fran Otero, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Continue reading "Traveling with Fashion: Into the Woods in Tenerife with Fran Otero — VIDEO" »


These are the Top 25 Beaches in the World and the Beautiful Men We Found at Them: PHOTOS

Manuelantonio
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica #17 (instagram)

Ready for some warm weather? While the U.S. is going through its most severe cold snap, polar vortex hell of the winter, we'd like to try to heat you up a bit.

TripAdvisor announced its 'Top 25 Beaches' chosen by its users all over the world this week. Since we're not going to be able to visit all of them (or any of them, for that matter) this weekend, we paid a visit to each one on Instagram, and found a few men who have been there to act as our visual tour guides.

Check out the Top 25 beaches in the world below, AFTER THE JUMP...

How many have you been to? And let us know your favorite specifically gay beaches as well.

 

25. Maunganui Beach, Mount Maunganui, New Zealand

Maunganiu
(instagram)

At the base of Mount Maunganui, an extinct volcanic cone which rises above the town, this beach is known for its surfing and crystal blue waters.

Continue reading "These are the Top 25 Beaches in the World and the Beautiful Men We Found at Them: PHOTOS" »


5 Things You Can't Miss in St. Petersburg, Florida

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This weekly travel column is brought to you by ManAboutWorld, an immersive digital premium gay travel magazine from Billy Kolber, Ed Salvato, Kenny Porpora, and nearly 75 Global Correspondents.

St. Petersburg doesn’t really feel like Florida. It's more like a city you’d find in the Pacific Northwest, with artists' lofts, mountain bikers and cute barista boys. Sometimes it feels like a Southern city, with street art murals and a new foodie wave and a downtown live music scene that’s bursting out of almost every bar. It took the best that Florida had — the Southern gothic architecture, the palm trees, the beaches, and the sunshine — and left behind the homogeneous strip mall boredom that’s come to define so much of the Sunshine State. It’s not as international as Miami or as gay as Fort Lauderdale, but definitely worth adding to our gay travel map.

MawHere are the five things you can't miss:

1. Dali Museum: A world-class museum in a city of 250,000 is really unheard of, which is why this city, as small as it is, deserves to be in the same conversation as places like Portland and Asheville. The Dali’s recent Dali/Picasso exhibit — the only one of its kind outside of Barcelona — was a stunner, and the upcoming surrealist exhibits are intriguing. The museum is right downtown, so if you’re traveling for some art, stay at the nearby Birchwood. Makes for a great Sunday afternoon escape from the sun after a morning of strolling the farmer’s market. 

2. Original Frenchy’s Cafe: Frenchy’s is the quintessential seafood shack. Located on a quiet street off the main drag in nearby Clearwater, this hole-in-the-wall is beloved by locals. Get the grouper cheeks or the grouper sandwich. There are a few iterations of Frenchy’s (the Rockaway Grill nearby) so be sure you find your way to the original.

3. The Canopy @ The BirchwoodThe only rooftop in town doesn’t disappoint. On the top floor of The Birchwood Hotel,
  this sexy, stylish lounge has a bar, cabanas, fire pits, and unmatched views of downtown. They serve a limited menu, so we’d suggest coming up for either a quick appetizer before dinner, or an after dinner aperitif. Weekends bring a younger crowd, loud and alive but not sloppy. 

4. Central Avenue Antiques District: The entire main street of Central is dotted with antique shops, odd boutiques, and galleries to make it downtown St. Pete’s most essential and unique shopping destination. Central Oddities is our favorite and a must-stop, but the entire block is worth a stroll.

5. Sunset Beach: The gay beach is about a five minute drive from the main drag of St. Pete Beach. It’s fairly standard, but booming with cute gay boys in the warmer months. The shabby shack of a bar across the street, however, should be avoided. Dirty and unfriendly and sure to kill whatever good vibes you’ve built up on the sand.

For more opinionated travel information and inspiration, get ManAboutWorld Magazine on iTunes (iOS) or Google Play (Android). 

Top photo credit: Matthew Paulson


Travel Notes from All Over: News for the Global Gay Jetsetter

Icehotel

SWEDEN: The world-famous Icehotel has undergone its renovations for 2015 and you can see a slideshow here. Selectism writes: "For the last 25 years, the hotel has been re-created each November, growing to include 16 'Art Suites' featuring elaborate sculpted creations, a bar (with a dance floor and lounge sofas) and a restaurant full of captivating features. At a constant temperature of negative five Celsius, most visitors opt for only one night in the hotel, with the rest spent in the nearby, cosy, ice-free 'Warm Hotel.'"

MadridMADRID: An employee of Madrid's Metro service has been suspended after urging workers there to inspect the tickets of "musicians, beggars, and gays" more often than other travelers, Newsweek reports: "The document directs workers to keep an eye on these particular passengers on Line 2 of the Metro between the stops of Las Rosas and Sol, which has stations close to the Chueca district, a well-known gay area in the city." LGBT advocates in Spain are outraged.

UK: If you're a thirsty beer drinker and you find yourself in Leeds, you've hit the jackpot. The Guardian has just posted a list of the Top 10 craft beer pubs in Leeds. We are loving some of the descriptions: "Weisse Weisse Baby – a wheat beer whose typical banana, lemon, pepper and coriander flavours had been given a hugely refreshing, thirst-quenching lick, thanks to an unusually generous dose of Saaz and Perle hops – was very good, as was Tapped’s caramel-bodied, briskly hoppy, US-style session pale, Rodeo."

DollyTENNESSEE: Dolly Parton fans may be excited to know that the Dixie Stampede, a dinner attraction in Pigeon Forge (where Dollywood is located) has just unveiled a $2.5 million renovation "which include new music and special effects, as well as interactive lighting that features 12.5 million LED bulbs" according to Mashable. The show has an equestrian theme and features Dolly's music, of course.

EDMONTON, ALBERTA: If winter's cold hasn't killed you yet and you're in the mood for a wildlife adventure, Elk Island National Park is an hour and a half drive from Edmonton and it's a federal game preserve where you can see bison and elk. Notcot took a winter trip there, and chronicled it beautifully.

PLANNING AHEAD

PROVINCETOWN: The Crown & Anchor Inn has announced its line-up for Independence Week 2015 from July 2 to July 9 and its DJs will include Chris Racine, Phil B, Alain Jackinsky, Eddie Martinez, Alex Acosta, Ivan Gomez, Roland Belmares, Gustavo Scorpio and Abel. Dreamgirl Jennifer Holliday wil also be performing that week.

NYC: London's well-known Horse Meat Disco is beginning a residency on Saturdays in the Big Apple at Brooklyn nightspot Output beginning on March 14 hosted by Emerson Barth, Casey Kenyon, Nick Colletti, David Dellamura, Levi Jackman Foster and Towleroad's resident music providers Occupy the Disco. Doors open at 10 pm.

Have a travel tip? Send it to travel@towleroad.com.


Gay Travel Dispatch of the Day: Diving in Thailand's Islands in the Andaman Sea

Nomadicboys

This new series features dispatches from LGBTQ travel writers, bloggers, and photographers who are on the road in far-flung places. If you know somebody who should be featured here, send us an email at travel@towleroad.com.

Stefan and Sebastien are currently "eating their way through Asia," scuba diving around Koh Lipe and Koh Hin Sorn Islands off the west coast of southern Thailand in the Malacca Strait.

Stefan and Sebastien write a travel blog called Nomadic Boys where they chronicle their adventures and offer travel advice. You can also follow them on Instagram.

Over the Christmas holiday they stayed for a month in Bangkok to plan for a trip to Myanmar in January, and offer some advice on their site for those planning to make that trip, and for those traveling on a budget to Bangkok:

We stayed at HQ Hostel for some of this time, which we found on Tripadvisor and recommend for its location to the gay life in Silom.

We had to first obtain a visa for Myanmar / Burma and then (as Lonely Planet and other online forums warned us) get brand spanking new, perfect condition dollar notes! The Burmese currency exchange shops are very particular about this and reject old notes with the slightest fold, rip or crease.

We found the best agency for the best rates for currency exchange in Bangkok is SuperRich International who can also provide you with new dollars for Myanmar / Burma (most Thai banks we checked couldn’t quite do this).

Enjoy a few more Instagram shots from their Thai islands adventure, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Travel Dispatch of the Day: Diving in Thailand's Islands in the Andaman Sea" »


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