30 Second Escape – Sacre Coeur, Paris

July 15, 2009

sacrecoer (768 x 576)

Sacre Coeur Basilica (Basilica of the Sacred Heart) sits atop Montmartre hill with a view of the Paris skyline that has inspired writers and artists since its completion in the late 1800s. Montmartre holds the heart and soul of the Paris experience.

At the highest point in the city, the site where the basilica sits is where tradition tells of the beheading of the city’s patron saint, Saint Denis, in the 3rd century.

Sacre Coeur retains its pure white color from the travertine stones which excrete a substance acting as a bleaching agent after the rains.

ESCAPE DRINK OF THE DAY: A glass of Château Margaux (Margaux, Bordeaux) sitting at the foot of Montmartre hill.


30 Second Escape – Great Wall of China

July 14, 2009

greatwall(684 x 912)

Spanning over 5,500 miles through the Chinese countryside, The Great Wall is also listed as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. An architectural masterpiece as well as a great hike, an afternoon on “The Wall” provides amazing views for miles. Standing atop so much incredible history is humbling. Climbing up those steep steps is tiring! Bring lots of water for the trek.

ESCAPE DRINK OF THE DAY: Enjoy a cold Tsingtao Beer after the climb!

30 Second Escape – Gili “T”, Indonesia

July 13, 2009

gilit (912 x 684)

Just about as close to paradise as you can imagine. A tiny island off the coast of Lombok, Indonesia; Gili Trawangan (or Gili “T” for short) is a place to soak up the incredible beauty of the sea. SCUBA diving, snorkeling and sun bathing are the order of the day.

The only means of transport are horse drawn carriages (cidomos) and bicycles. Each night of the week, one of the popular bars has a Party Night where it’s possible to dance on the beach until dawn.


30 Second Escape – Paxos, Greece

July 9, 2009

paxos (912 x 684)

This tiny Greek Island, with a population of just 2500, is truly a jewel set in the blue Ionian Sea. Greek mythology tells us Paxos was the secret hideaway for Poseidon, formed when the island of Corfu was struck with his trident. Fragrant lemon trees and olive groves line the hillsides and secluded coves provide privacy for an afternoon at the beach. Colorful fishing boats tie up at the harbor, a perfect place for sampling Greek specialties and watching the people go by.


30 Second Escape – Petra, Jordan

July 8, 2009
Treasury at Petra

Treasury at Petra

As one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, the ancient city of Petra in Jordan is an archeological marvel. Constructed around 100 BC, but not discovered until 1821, this phenomenal city provides a unique opportunity to explore. A narrow gorge of high, red sandstone, called the Siq (or shaft) leads to Petra’s most jaw-dropping find, Al Khazneh (or The Treasury).

Take a step back in time as you wander through ancient history in Jordan’s Petra.

ESCAPE DRINK OF THE DAY: Petra Beer, of course!

30 Second Escape – New Orleans

July 7, 2009
Jackson Square

Jackson Square

Where else in the world would a city’s “excess and eccentricity” be considered such a source of pride? Why in New Orleans, of course!

A visit to historic Jackson Square wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the famous Cafe Du Monde for a plateful of doughy, delightful, powdered sugar beignets. cafedumonde(576 x 768)

The city has a charm and grace carefully cultivated in it’s people, gardens, and magnificent balconies. And for those who enjoy savoring the culinary pleasures in life, New Orleans has honed eating and drinking to a fine art form.

One visit to this charismatic city and you’ll be hooked. New Orleans,”The City That Care Forgot”, is definitely a state of mind!

ESCAPE DRINK OF THE DAY: Absinthe at Tujague’s original stand-up bar

30 Second Escape – South Africa, Karongwe Reserve

July 6, 2009

When the workday pressure gets to be too much…

When it’s safer to click on a link than to head to the vending machine…

Take 30 seconds and ESCAPE!

Karonge Reserve, South Africa

Baby Cheetah

Baby Cheetah

Going on an African safari is a dream for many people. Getting up close, like we were able to do with this little furball, is a priceless gift.

A typical day begins at 4:30 am for volunteers on the Karongwe Game Reserve. Working with Global Vision International, we enjoyed a chance to see and interact with the animals in ways not always possible on a regular safari.

Africa is an amazing place. It becomes a part of you, even long after you’ve come back home.

Armarula on the rocks

Enjoy and safe travels!