This November I was lucky enough to be chosen to accompany four competition winners on an trip across America as part of our epic #UncoverDiscoverUSA road trips. We started our adventure in Miami before travelling into the Deep South taking in Florida Key West, Dallas, Memphis and New Orleans.
After a few days getting aquatinted with Miami and the Keys, we hit Dallas where we joined the Grand Southern one of a number of group tours in the USA exclusively designed for anyone aged between 18 and 35.
Having never travelled as part group made up entirely of young people before I was excited about the fun that was undoubtedly coming our way, but also slightly nervous… I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, or how being in a group of up to 50 people would affect the experience for myself and our competition winners.
But I needn’t have worried, what followed was 5 days of some of the best fun I’ve ever had while travelling and here’s why…
Group fun on the Dallas Cowboys pitch.
Earlier this year, we launched one of our biggest competitions ever. Together with Tourism Australia, we gave away six of the best jobs in world in one of our favourite places in the world, Australia.
The applications came in droves from all over the globe, and one of the lucky winners was the UK’s very own Rich Keam. Rich left Brighton in August for the sunny shores of Perth, WA, where he’s working as a Taste Master, sampling Western Australia’s finest cuisine for a living. Here, he tells us why he’s loving life Down Under, and why he reckons everyone should head there to work while they can. Take it away, Rich!
After seeing the Best Jobs in the World competition advertised online I decided to enter, because basically, why wouldn’t you? I travelled around Australia on a year’s working holiday visa about 15 years ago, and although it seems kind of like a dream now, I still get a pang in my stomach and a sense of jealousy when I hear someone down the pub saying they’re going to Australia. I still get a real sense of excitement when I hear people talking about their travels here.
Rich explores the Bungle Bungle range in WA's Purnululu National Park
In September this year, 5 very lucky STA Travel agents we’re whisked off on a whirlwind week long trip to Colombia, for a short, but very sweet, trip to experience the very best of this fantastic country. One of those Experts, Martyn Bone, couldn’t wait to spill the beans about his first time in Colombia, and explain why he plans to come back again and again.
So, imagine how you feel when the manager phones on your day off… you ignore the ringing and wait for a more convenient time to call back right? Well in my case, that changed when the flashing message was to say there’s a trip to Colombia with my name on it! It’s safe to say I was back on that phone straight away and to be honest, already thinking about stepping off our plane into the Colombian sunshine!
I’ve spent over 3 months in Latin America on a previous Round the World adventure, but never reached the historic cities, tropical jungles and glorious beaches of Colombia. The continent has so much to offer any type of traveler and really is a place where you can get totally immersed in the culture, luckily for me, it’s still a land less travelled in relation to some other places in South America. Whatever your ‘thing’, be it history, food, music or just the great outdoors, Colombia’s got it all.
Starting out on the Lost City Trek.
Get ready to be inspired, we’ve just launched our brand spanking new YouTube channel!
Subscribe now for free, and be the first to know about all the super inspiring videos we’ve uploaded that will capture compelling snapshots about the joys of travelling the world.
To kick things off, check out the first few videos from our #UncoverDiscoverUSA road trips – which are happening right now, until 6th November 2013.
STA Travel Air Product Executive Tom Browne has recently returned from a 2 year long stint at the STA Travel store in New York (yes, yes, I know, I hate him too). So after spending plenty of time discovering the city that never sleeps he should have a nugget of wisdom or two to share when it comes to finding the cheapest and best quality grub in a city famous for it first class cuisine.
Here’s Toms Guide to where to head if you want decent food at budget prices in New York.
A few months ago, my girlfriend came to visit me while I was living in New York, the first morning of her visit we sat drinking cups of tea in the kitchen, discussing plans for the day. We decided to get a bagel and walk to the waterfront… At which point I asked her “What are you going to order when we get there?” to which, bemused, she responded “a smoked salmon bagel?”
NYC Food Lesson #1 there is no such thing as just a smoked salmon bagel. Lesson #2? Know your order before you get to the cashier. After much explanation – she got it down.
“Lemme gedda lightly toasted poppy seed, with regular cream cheese and nova lox, arugula, pepper and a squeeze a’lemon”
Ordering any food in New York has the potential to be pretty traumatic, however, get it right and you can dine like a king for less than the price of a Boots meal deal… Here are some of my suggestions for eating like a true New Yorker, on a budget, just don’t forget to tip!
Manhattan is home to some of the best food in the city.