Thrills aplenty on New Zealand’s Stewart Island

INVERCARGILL, New Zealand – Pilot Raymond Hector banks his nine-passenger Britten-Norman Islander wide over the Southern Ocean heading for a beach landing at Mason Bay on rugged Stewart Island, a...

DATE: Oct. 15, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

‘Ultimate toy box’

WINTER HAVEN, Fla.The first thing you’ll do upon entering Legoland Florida is walk up to the nearest oversized Lego model and touch it: Is it really made out of those little plastic bricks that are...

DATE: Oct. 15, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

Most haunted city

NEW ORLEANS New Orleans calls itself “America’s Most Haunted City,” and the Halloween season has become one of the most popular times of year to visit, with a music festival that attracts 80,000...

DATE: Oct. 1, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

Money generated in haunted houses is scary

NEW ORLEANS – Ross Karpelman smiled happily as he looked over his huge collection of bloody body parts, large rats, dangling cobwebs and tools for cutting, slashing and sawing. Karpelman, who with...

DATE: Oct. 1, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

Airline won’t refund ticket after passenger dies

Q: I recently bought a pair of tickets through Expedia for my husband and myself. We planned to visit Germany this fall as part of a retirement trip. Shortly after that, my husband passed away very...

DATE: Oct. 1, 2011 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Call of the Wild

ESTES PARK – There are certain signs of fall in the town of Estes Park: the chill of morning frost, the reds and yellows of autumn leaves and the thousands of elk that visit. The elk come looking...

DATE: Sept. 3, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

For Star Wars fans, Yoda statue is a mecca

SAN FRANCISCO – Within sight of the Golden Gate Bridge lies another landmark cherished by a small but fervent group of travelers: a full-size replica of Yoda, George Lucas’ master of the...

DATE: Sept. 3, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

Help! I’ve been bumped and ‘walked’ to a different motel

Q: I made a reservation at a Fairfield Inn in Philadelphia earlier this year. I prepaid for two nights and received a confirmation.The day before I left – six months after I made the reservation –...

DATE: Sept. 3, 2011 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Nashville hosts National Folk Festival Sept. 2-4

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Nashville has no theme park, no beach and no casinos.But it has music. Lots of it.The National Folk Festival, which is coming to Nashville on Labor Day weekend, caps off several...

DATE: Aug. 20, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

My fiancé walked out on me; can I get a refund for my cruise?

Q: I was supposed to be going on a cruise for my honeymoon. Then my fiancé – make that my former fiance – walked out on me. I came home to the house that we both owned together to find all of his...

DATE: Aug. 20, 2011 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Cast away

TWIN BRIDGES, Mont. Ahead of my fishing trip to Montana in early July, my old fly-casting instructor gave me some troubling advice. “Cancel your trip,” said Dusty Wissmath, who guides in the...

DATE: Aug. 20, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

Big Sur, Calif. a haven for writers, musicians

BIG SUR, Calif. – The road to Big Sur is a narrow, winding one, with the Pacific Ocean on one side, spread out like blue glass, and a mountainside of redwood trees on the other. The area spans 90...

DATE: Aug. 6, 2011 | CATEGORY: Travel

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