Miami Beach to Host World Outgames

gay socks running

Attention gay sports fans (and allies!):  Miami Beach and Miami will host the World Outgames in 2017, marking the first time the sporting event is held in the United States.

Sponsored by the Gay and Lesbian International Sport Association (GLISA), the World Outgames–a gay-inclusive Olympics of sorts–takes place every four years in a different global city.

Included in the Miami Beach-Miami bid were proposals to host a human rights conference, a diverse cultural program, a World Outgames Village, opening and closing ceremonies, and 30 sporting events over 10 days, all under the South Florida sunshine.

Consider this your four-year warning:  It’s time to squeeze into the Speedo, dust off your running shoes, or bedazzle that figure skating costume.

(Photo via


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San Antonio Keeps the Mex in Tex

Charreada (Photo: Al Rendon/SACVB)

Charreada (Photo: Al Rendon/SACVB)

Spend a day exploring San Antonio’s Mexican heritage, dating back to 1821 when the area officially belonged to our southern neighbor.  Less than three hours from the border, the city continues to be a cultural gateway between the two countries.

Rent a car for the day to facilitate exploring outside the city center, then make a pit stop for a Tex-Mex breakfast of chorizo and egg tacos at Tito’s Restaurant. Next, let the music move you–regardless of your religious beliefs–when the traditional mass incorporates the music of a Mexican mariachi choir at the historic 18th century Mission San José (Sundays at 12:30 p.m.).  Afterward, make your way to Charro Ranch for a Charreada (usually once monthly at 3 p.m.), a Mexican rodeo featuring rope tricks, music, dance, and impressive synchronized horseback choreography by sidesaddle-riding women in traditional dress.

Head back downtown to peruse the shops of Market Square, the largest Mexican marketplace outside of Mexico, for authentic souvenirs ranging from artisanal pottery and brightly-painted dolls to kitschy “lucha libre” masks and bedazzled sombreros. Steps away, feast on heaping plates of chicken enchiladas in móle sauce at the 24-hour Mi Tierra Café and PanaderiaFamily-owned since 1941, Mi Tierra serves classic Mexican dishes with a wide selection of tequilas and margaritas.  Finish your meal with a cinnamon-laced Mexican hot chocolate and the signature pan dulce (sweetbread) while listening to the sweet serenade of trovadorers.  Stick around at the bar to tackle a jumbo margarita or two, then cab it over to Alamo Street Eat Bar, the city’s gourmet food truck park, serving beers and mobile eats till 2 am on Fridays and Saturday nights.

(A version of this article first appeared in New York Magazine)


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The Week in Travel (2/15/2013)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

Rio is World's Happiest!

Rio is the Happiest!

*San Francisco is the happiest city in America, but Rio de Janeiro makes the world smile (via Huffington Post).

*Poop, power outages and the perfume of sewage defeat the cruising vacation of 3,143 passengers aboard the Carnival Triumph (via Miami Herald).

*On Valentines’ Day, American Airlines and US Airways announced the marriage that will soon conceive the world’s largest air carrier (via Washington Post).

*Kids are great–and necessary to the continuation of the human race–but you don’t always want them on your flight.   Now, a Malaysian-based airline is introducing a kid-free, quiet zone (via Passport Magazine).

*France’s Roissy-Charles de Gaulle Airport offers duty-free shopping and an Auguste Rodin gallery (via NY Times).

*Want to know more about your upcoming vacation destination?  Tourism boards are sharing pictures, upcoming events, and restaurant recommendations on Twitter (via NBC News).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Fox Latino)

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Germany: Lock Your Love in Cologne

Open your heart to me, baby
I hold the lock and you hold the key
Open your heart to me, darlin’
I’ll give you love if you, you turn the key

This Valentine’s Day, let Cologne hold the lock and the Rhine hold the key.

Join the Köln tradition by engraving both your names on a padlock and locking your love along the pedestrian pathway of the Hohenzollernbrücke Bridge.  Then throw the key in the Rhine River.

In addition to connecting east and west Cologne, the Hohenzollernbrücke also symbolically links thousands of lovers.

(To learn more about Cologne, Germany… read my article on Travel Squire or listen to my radio segment on Proud FM)

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The Week in Travel (2/1/2013)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:
Nude dude San Francisco

*You can leave your heart in San Francisco, you can be sure to wear flowers in your hair, but don’t forget to cover your “genitals, perineum, and anal region,” now that the city’s ban on nudity has officially gone into effect (via RT).

*With Valentine’s Day approaching, woo your honey-bunny at one of the “ten romantic places to see before you die” (via Times of India).

*NYC, what is it about you?  See for yourself in this stunning 360 degree, interactive map (via The Telegraph).

*You might want to reconsider your trip to Russia, as the country’s anti-gay law–already in place in St. Petersburg and other cities–aims to criminalize “homosexual propaganda” nationally (via Edge).

*Enjoy a pink and magenta hued lunch with Ken, at the world’s first Barbie restaurant, now open in Taiwan (via CNN).

*Some like it hot… while some not.  The travel doctors at MAW take the “sexual temperature” of the 19 gay resorts in Ft. Lauderdale (via Man About World).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Reuters)


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The Week in Travel (1/18/13)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:

Sydney Sizzles

Sydney Sizzles

*Baby, it’s cold outside, but it ain’t nothing compared to the coldest city on earth–Yakutsk in Eastern Siberia–where temperatures plummet to minus 45C/49F (via The Independent).  In an alternate hemisphere, Sydney, Australia, records its hottest day ever at 45C/114F (via Sydney Morning Herald).

*The United States of America is inaugurating Barack Obama as its President on Monday.  And Washington D.C. will be celebrating from Mall (via Washington Post) to Ball (via NY Times).

*The Gray Lady names Rio de Janeiro #1 (via NY Times).  Find your top travel destination for 2013 (via Traveling IQ).

*While in Mexico, don’t drink the water; while in Beijing, don’t breathe the air (via NY Times).

*In air travel news: the Boeing Dreamliner is a nightmare (via USA Today), and American Airlines unveils a new look to mixed reviews (via NBC News).

*Looking for love in all the wrong places?  Book a trip to one of America’s Cruisiest Gay Cities (via

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via Toby Zerna/Sunday Telegraph)

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The W Mexico City Satisfies

W Mexico City View

When was the last time someone promised to satisfy your every wish?

The W Mexico City will be your swanky genie-in-a-bottle. Whether you want a mariachi band performing in your bathtub or VIP tickets to a private club, the W concierge will make it happen through their “Whatever/Whenever” service (legally permitting, of course). Located in the Polanco area, steps from luxury shopping, galleries and Bosque Chapultepec, the largest city park in Latin America, the W Mexico is the place to indulge.

With the AWAY Spa and Fitness Center, Whiskey Bar, Solea restaurant at your fingertips–and spacious rooms that feature a hammock in your shower (should you be exhausted from your hygiene regimen)–you may have to force yourself to venture beyond the hotel’s colorfully accented lobby.

W Mexico City exterior

Read my full Mexico City travel article on Edge.

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The Week in Travel (1/4/13)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   This week, Traveling IQ curates the highlights of the upcoming year:

Topping 2013

There is a Top for you, regardless of who you are.  This Top has been chosen by experts, to make you happy, to make you whole, to expand your horizons, and to guide you toward finding that elusively special spot.

Now, in 2013, will your Travel Top be…

*Amsterdam.  Holland’s forward-thinking capital is serving up major museum renovations, locavore restaurants, and cutting edge architecture, while celebrating the 400 year anniversary of its canals (via Conde Nast Traveler).

*Portugal.  Oozing “old European charm” with it’s Medieval towns and historic quarters, the pace in Portugal is soothingly slow and its locals increasingly thirsty (via Globespots).

*Sri Lanka.  After a 26-year civil war and a devastating tsunami, this South Asia country has bounced back and is one of the best-value destinations around (via USA Today/Lonely Planet).

*Myanmar.  After decades of seclusion, men in skirts invite you to explore traditional culture, colonial architecture, and villages largely unchanged by the past 50 years (via Art Info).

*India.  Few places in the world can offer the stark contrasts of beautiful and awful, breathtaking and grotesque, while being considered the pinnacle for independent travelers (via BootsnAll).

*New York City.  King of the Hill and Top of the Heap, the city that doesn’t sleep is still the top gay travel destination for 2013 (via Advocate).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via MSN)

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Happy Travels in 2013!

As 2012 comes to a close, thank you to all the Traveling IQ readers (from 138 different countries!) for another wonderful year.

Wishing you all happy travels of our huge, small world in 2013!

(Photo courtesy to’s “2012 Year in Blogging” report)

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The Week in Travel (12/21/12)

The world of travel moves fast!   Let’s keep up–together.   On Fridays,  Traveling IQ curates the highlights from the past week:


Has Santa been naughty or nice?

*Need a little help getting into the Holiday spirit?  Tour the most Christmassy places on the planet (via CNN) and follow Mr. Claus around the world (via CNN).

*Oh New Year’s Eve, how you force unattainable expectations!  This year, visit a spot worthy of welcoming 2013. (via CNN).

*Gay marriage has a new Caribbean destination.  The tiny island of Saba, located in the Dutch Caribbean, has legalized gay and lesbian marriage (via Passport Magazine).

*Tourists are not flocking to war-torn Gaza, but if they could, they would discover ancient archeological ruins and Mediterranean coastlines.  Michael Luongo offers a glimpse into what tourism in the region could be (via Huffington Post).

*Skiing is a seasonal sport for most.  Surprise, it’s always winter(y) somewhere.  Ski bums can spend all year on the slopes (via NY Times).

*Our vacation photos had a stressful week.  On Monday, Instascamgram announced it had the right to sell your photos (via CNET) before assuring us it didn’t (via CNET).  Confused and betrayed, photographers started dating new photo sharing apps, or at least embarking on open relationships (via Huffington Post).

What did I miss?  Share your favorite travel news in the comments below or by posting on the Traveling IQ Facebook page.

(Photo via CNN)

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