Please excuse the retro formatting.
This page was created back in early days when raw HTML was the norm, for those of us who actually made web pages back then.
I haven't bothered to modernize it, figuring it's the content that actually counts.
Aiken/Widom Travel Favorites
We've only incorporated a few favorites
here from our massive Year Off for
Travel. Separately we created a comprehensive list of the hotels
and outfitters we used during the year -- 99% of them were truly
We're developing a list of out-of-the-way accommodations or
outfits we've been particularly happy with during our travels.
They're not necessarily the most mainstream or well-known even among
adventure travelers, but we had great experiences and highly recommend
- Adventures Within Reach, knowledgeable and reliable agent for aventure-travel worldwide, without the high markup of some American agents
- Art's Riverview Lodge, comfortable tree-houses and great food next to Khao Sok National Park, Thailand
- Bilit Rainforest Lodge, extremely comfortable eco-lodge on the Kinabatangan River in Sabah, Borneo
- Copper Canyon Adventures, arranges independent, guided, or small-group trips to Mexico's Copper Canyon
- Daniella's Bungalows, a refreshing alternative to the larger tourist hotels in the Seychelles (Bel Ombre, Mahe Island)
- El Monte Lodge, a wonderful cloudforest eco-lodge in the Mindo area of Ecuador
- Intra Travel, reliable, responsive, fair-priced agent for booking adventure travel in Sabah, Borneo
- Kalypso Adventures, arranges nature and adventure travel in South India
- Khao Yai Garden Lodge, just outside Khao Yai National Park, Thailand
- Sakrisoy Rorbuer, restored fisherman's cabins in Reine, Lofoten Islands, Norway
Here are some more mainstream places that we still found
The lists are relatively short, at least for now, in part because we've only
included things we consider extra-special. Also, we often travel
entirely by rented camper or charter sailboat:
- For campers, in North America we've had good experiences with Cruise America, in
Australia & New Zealand with Maui Campervans,
and in Argentina & Chile with Andean Roads.
- For sailboat charters, we've been happy with the two standards --
The Moorings and Sunsail -- and generally less happy
with smaller companies or independent charters, although our very
enjoyable charter of Cyrene out
of Phuket, Thailand was a notable exception.
Patagonia: Most travelers either go with an organized "eco-travel" group or
are on the hostel circuit. It's feasible to do something in between:
similar accommodations and activities to the groups but independent
travel and a fraction of the cost. We made all the reservations for
our 2002 trip by email through two in-country travel agents, both of
whom were responsive, helpful, reliable, and fairly priced:
Peru: We arranged our first independent Peru adventure trip (2006) online with
two agents and a hotel, all of which we recommend:
- In Chile: Ventistur (Gonzalo Tejeda, email@example.com)
- In Argentina: Representour (firstname.lastname@example.org)
We arranged a second trip (2009) to Huaraz, Peru for trekking only. We
highly recommend the following trekking agency and affiliated
- Peru Treks & Adventure:
We did the Salkantay / Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, a private 7-day
- Pantiacolla: We
did a custom 6-day trip combining a stay at the Panticolla Lodge
with the Yine Program.
- Hostal Rumi Punku:
Don't be fooled by the two stars. It's very comfortable, on a quiet
but well-located street, and the Cusco airport pickup is a plus.
Other Aiken/Widom Travel Pages
Quite some time ago I (Jennifer) wrote an essay on Adventure Travel
with Children Under Four. It evolved into an article
about our family travels by Alice Cary that appeared in the Great
Outdoor Recreation Pages online magazine (www.gorp.com). Subsequently I wrote two
addenda to the original essay: Adventure Travel
with Children Ages 4-6, and Bareboat
Cruising with Young Children. Since then, I'm afraid my writings
have not kept pace with the ages and travel activities of my children.
Here's a log and a few
photos from our travels and a travel
quote I really like.