His Own Private Island Vacation

November 7, 2010 - Accounts of urban-minded type-A people spending time in quiet natural spaces often trace a well-worn storyline of angst followed by revelation. How am I going to survive without Internet access? What, no Starbucks? Fears of boredom, bugs, rudimentary food supplies... But by day three they almost always get into the rhythm of just being. And they love it. They learn that life is not only possible but wonderful when it's stripped down to basics. Writer David Carr covers media issues for the NY Times.  He's a city boy who's all city all the time. He recently spent six days alone with his wife on a private island in the Bahamas ($2000 for the island with house, $300 for food + getting there) .

As he planned a vacation on a deserted island he recounts his first thought:

Alcatraz is an island too.

Within a day he has an epiphany:

These are the things I carried: an iPad jammed with various kinds of media, enough batteries to stock a Wal-Mart, a BlackBerry, a bunch of DVDs, 7,000 songs on my iPod, and a bottle of extra virgin olive oil.

These are the things I needed: My wife.

He tells his tale here.



Diving with Sharks in Fiji

January 16, 2009 - The allure of diving with big fish and sharks in particular is undeniable, writes Greg Winter. At Pacific Harbor in Fiji the sharks line up to be hand fed by divers wearing chain mail. Shark diving has supplanted fishing as a primary industry in certain villages in Fiji and the result is that reefs popular with shark divers are protected from overfishing. Here's the full story at NYTimes.

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Sail the Caribbean for $55 to $65 a day

November 17, 2009 - Is it possible to take a two week sailing trip in the Caribbean at the height of the season for less than $1000 including breakfast and dinner (not including air fare)? The answer is yes... but... you'll have to help with sails, cooking and cleaning up - not a meaningful distinction for anyone considering a bare boat charter. Experience is not necessary. Read Matt Gross's story about his experience on the 75' schooner SV Illusion here.

Go directly to the SV Illusion website.

First Family Vacation

Moshup (aka Gay Head). MoreBeach image.July 24, 2009 - In case you've been sleeping the big news is that Barack Obama and his family will be spending their summer vacation on Martha's Vineyard at the end of next month. The Vineyard Gazette reports that they will be renting the 28.5 acre Blue Heron Farm off South Road in Chilmark. The property overlooks Town Cove, the westernmost finger of the Tisbury Great Pond. Similar properties rent for between $35,000 to $50,000 per week. Here's the full story by Sam Bungey.

To truly enjoy a vacation on MVY one should spend at least a month or six. But if you've only got a day and half and your travel style is less than presidential, then what should you do? NYT's Danielle Pergament writes about what a mere citizen could enjoy in just 36 Hours.

Location of Blue Heron Farm:

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House Rental Horror Stories

horror house rentalJuly 9, 2009 - In Today's NYTimes Joyce Wadler presents some truly horrible stories about vacation rentals. Read the gory details here. If you've had a similarly bad experience please share it with us so that others may commiserate and learn how to avoid the same fate. Post as a comment here or send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Cool Bars on Jersey Shore

June 19, 2009 We've been inviting my cousin Jeff from New Jersey to visit us on Cape Cod for over a decade. He says, "yes, yes, that sounds great." And then he asks, "how's the night life?" Huh? Night life on Cape Cod? We're still waiting for him to come. Jeff, you see, grew up and lives in Long Branch on the Jersey Shore. According to the New York Times the Jersey Shore has cool bars and nightclubs from Asbury Park to Cape May. Here's a photo essay.