After living in Antigua for a year I decided it was time to learn to sail! Antigua really is the Mecca of sailing in the Caribbean, so this was the place to do it I thought. After making some enquiries, I decided to make a booking with Miramar Sailing – a company based in Jolly Harbour where I live.
Being a complete beginner, I was advised to book the RYA Competent Crew Course; there was also the opportunity to book this for a “Ladies only week”. Sounded like lots of fun I thought. As the date was getting nearer I had a couple of apprehensions: maybe I will get seasick, maybe I would miss technology (especially Facebook and email!) and how am I going to remember all the knots (making knots was never my strong point back in the girl guides!).
Packing was supposed to be very light – another difficult task for me but I managed, in fact it’s quite liberating not packing makeup, high heels and carrying a selection of dresses and handbags – all of which are really not required whilst sailing on a yacht for a week (unless you are featuring in a Duran Duran video!)
My course started on 8th April, I was ready to go! Read more
Risking Everything: coming out in Coffee Land by Elizabeth Worley.
Winner! 2011 Non-fiction Global eBooks Award!
You stand on a hillside , looking up into a coffee plantation. The red berries are gleaming with the promise of a good crop. The air is rich and warm, the bird song louder than you can remember. Below you is the little casita you are staying in. Surely this part of Panama is heaven on earth.
You are curious about the women who own the land and farm the coffee. They also make luscious Cloud Botanicals natural beauty products. What is their story? How did they come to be custodians of such prolific beauty? Read more
Guest Blog Post
Of course women are going to Costa Rica, have you seen pictures of this place!?
It is gorgeous! Soft sand clean beaches, warm ocean waters, and enough nature to fill a year worth of National Geographic’s. This country has quickly transitioned to a great tourist hot spot as well as an ideal spot for expats looking to relocate. Voted 2012 as “The Happiest Country” in the world, who wouldn’t want to go check it out and see what all the fuss is about. If you are thinking about taking a break, or perhaps an “extended vacation,” here are five great reasons why Costa Rica should be at the top of your list as a solo woman traveller! Read more
Guest blog by Nancy Hawker: I have met many women during my travels who have said they are too afraid to travel alone because they feel too vulnerable. There are special challenges, but there are also many rewards. Traveling alone empowers women by developing their independence and self-reliance and it presents the opportunity to develop intuition and ingenuity. I have learned many things about myself that I never would have learned, and met people I never would have met had I been traveling with a friend. I have put together a website with the purpose of encouraging all women to get out there and go it alone at least once. Nancy’s Blog: Women Travelling Alone Read more
Guest blog by Sophie McGovern
Venturing to Lima alone, I had no idea who I would meet, what the course would be like or if I would be up to the challenge. As it turned out, I met some of the loveliest people on my trip and overcame several personal obstacles whilst improving my yoga practise.
Yoga Inbound Cusco
The course was run by Yoga Inbound, headed up by the lovely Chaitanya who is ordinarily based in Cusco. Hot, hectic Lima seems like an unlikely place to find inner calm and learn more about the ancient practise of yoga, but I arrived at our host’s apartment to find a tranquil sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle.
A short walk from the coast and located in a quieter part of town, the spacious apartment served as our accommodation and practise room. I shared a large bedroom with four other women on the course, and was part of a group of fifteen which included Europeans, Americans and Peruvians. Classes were in English, but I had plenty of chance to practise my Spanish in the breaks.
I was taking the course to improve my understanding of yoga and my technique as well as become a teacher, and the course completely delivered. The three hour morning sessions were tailored to all levels of ability with different variations of the postures depending on experience and flexibility.
We were given one-to-one help with our asanas and learnt their original names as well as the Ashtanga yoga sequences. In the afternoon there were classes on the background and philosophy of the discipline including meditation, chakras, teaching techniques and the yoga diet.
It became apparent to me quite quickly that everyone on the course had physical and metal barriers that they wanted to overcome, however small, and this proved to be a significant bonding experience for all of us. There were tears of frustration and release, loads of laughs and the facing of fears as we tried new things. The two weeks were pretty intensive and inevitably led to plenty of heart-to-hearts.
After the course, I stayed with two of the good friends I had made and travelled on to the ancient Incan capital of Cusco where I taught morning classes in Chaitanya’s studio and had lots of adventures exploring the Sacred Valley.
For less than $200 the course was a complete bargain and the teaching style was really professional, inclusive and warm. If you want to find out more about the course you can check out the Yoga Inbound website here.
Sophie McGovern is a travel writer, yarn spinner and full time nomad currently living on the beautiful island of Koh Samui, Thailand. She is a regular contributor to HeadingThere and has written for a number of popular travel blogs. Her first novel, House of Mirrors, is almost finished.
Guest post by South African villa company, Cape Portfolios
Traveling alone is a wonderful way to get to see what you wanna see, when you wanna see it and on your own timetable. Below are five cities that a highly recommended for single ladies traveling alone because they offer a good environment for meeting new people in a relatively safe, friendly atmosphere.
Sed0na – Paris – Rio De Janeiro – Lahaina, Maui – Cape Town Read more
A Journey of Discovery at Machu Picchu by Gayle Lawrence founder of Journeys of Discovery: Mind, Body, Spirit Travel Adventures
An Outer Discovery… An Inner Journey
Read more about her company and tours on offer here Read more
Servas – My Favorite Organization Ever
Excerpt Reprinted with permission from “Female Nomad and Friends” by Rita Golden Gelman. Copyright © 2010. Published by Three Rivers Press/Crown Publishers, a division of Random House, Inc. BUY IT HERE
Being a part of Servas is like having family all over the world. It’s actually better than family. People join Servas because they want you to visit them when you are in their country. Not always the case with family. Read more
In the network of Women Owned Travel businesses around the world, Gayle Lawrence’s Journeys of Discovery have always been out there and visible with a great range of trips that touch the soul.
I have just updated the Tour Calendar at Women Travel the World with her latest tours and what a choice there is:
- Meditation and service in Bhutan
- encounters with Humpback Whales in the Dominican Republic (get in early for 2011 these sell out very fast!)
- Women’s Quest to Avalon in Britain
- A writing retreat in Mexico Read more
The Lure, and Secrets, of Cuba – this Memoir unveils the truth behind the façade of the island
Buy the Book here: The Cuban Chronicles: A True Tale of Rascals, Rogues, and Romance
Some girls have all the fun. Calgarian writer Wanda St.Hilaire has taken her passion for travel, especially to Spanish speaking countries, and has given readers an opportunity to experience Cuba from an original and spirited perspective Read more