Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Speaking of Golf In Orlando is offering a 5-Night package called "The Recession Beater" that looks like a fantastic winter golf getaway.

At rates starting at $336 per golfer, you get five rounds of golf, one at each of these Orlando golf courses:
  • Sanctuary Ridge Golf Club
  • Stoneybrook Golf Club
  • Eastwood Golf Club
  • Diamondback Golf Club
  • The Golf Club at Bridge Water

All courses are located within a short driving distance from the hotel.

Also, five nights accomodations at the Quality Inn Plaza, Orlando, which has a very respectable AAA rating of 3.0. The hotel has over 1,000 guest rooms, three outdoor pools, video game rooms, business center, on-site restaurants and much more. According to, it is located near Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, Sea World, and Wet 'N Wild. Kids with an adult get free breakfast and dinner buffets at the hotel.

Wise Trip Planning with

Let's say you've decided to take the family to Orlando, Florida on your next vacation. You know there's lots to do in the area, but aside from Walt Disney World, you aren't sure about the specifics. What can the kids do? Mom and Dad? Golf?

Your new one-stop-shop for planning the trip can be Founder and CEO David Reichman has, from the company's beginning, designed a site built on trips already taken, places already visited, restaurants, hotels, golf courses already reviewed and rated by travelers just like you. If you want an entire itenerary, you can pick from hundreds of them that have already been experienced by other travelers, or pick and choose your own.

With a simple search on TripWiser for the term "Orlando", I found everything I wanted. The search returned a 7-day itenerary called "Take a Swing" that included golf at four top courses, Universal Studios, festivals, Ripley's Believe it or Not, recreational parks, art museums, everything for every member of the family.

That same "Orlando" search gave me a selection of restaurants with ratings and pricing, the same for hotels, and other Things to Do ideas.

Travel sites abound on the Internet, but none are as easy to use at TripWiser. None will provide you with such detail. Not only does TripWiser have the travel information you need, they have user blogs for just about every travel specialty you can imagine; a road trip blog, road trip planner, adventure travel blog, family travel blog, California road trip blog, motorcycle road trip, you name it.

I discovered the site a year or more ago and I'm now kicking myself for not having explored it in depth back then. Simply put, it's a great travel find. I can't wait to explore more of TripWiser.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

College Football Coaches Tee It Up at Reynolds Plantation

You won't see any good golf there, but you'll see a great destination golf course; Reynolds Plantation. Golf Vacation Insider describes tomorrow's event featuring college football coaches. Should be fun to watch,

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My year of getting published: Win a Copy of Organic Explorer New Zealand...#links#links#links#links

One of the most beautiful places on earth, even though it is home to Frank Nobilo (Golf Channel commentator and former PGA Tour golfer (and actually very good at both).
My year of getting published: Win a Copy of Organic Explorer New Zealand...

More than No. 2 at Pinehurst

Pinehurst No. 2. It's where Payne Stewart won the Open in 2000 in dramatic fashion, and site of so many other great moments. It's one of those courses, like Augusta National, St. Andrews, and Pebble Beach, that all golfers have on their list of "Top Places to Play Before I Die." Deservedly so, but there's so much more to Pinehurst, six more courses, to be exact.

Pinehurst No. 1 was built in 1898 and, despite it's just over 6,000 yard layout, is challenging. No place for anything but a straight drive, Donald Ross has made sure of it.

Pinehurst No. 2 and No. 4 hosted portions of the 2008 U.S. Amateur. There's also the Jack Nicklaus-designed Pinehurst National that deserves recognition.

If it's your first trip to Pinehurst, you certainly want to play No. 1. As one of golf's "pilgrimage destinations," my goal is to keep returning to Ol' Caroline until I've finished them all.

Click here to watch The Conversion Blogging Video

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sharing Travel Experiences

Potentially the best way to find out if you will like a place you've never been is to hear what others say, see their pictures, vicarously explore the places they went. None of that was possible a few years ago, at least it wasn't easy to find.

The Travelpod blog makes it easy to do all those things and more. If you're wondering what the new golf course near Hilton Head is like, chances are a Travelpod user has been there.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Avoid Spending the Holidays in an Airport

Here's a great article on how to avoid increasingly ubiquitous airport hassles. Tip: Take a deep breath and remember the reasons it takes so long to get through busy security checks. Airline problems, themselves, are another story.

"How to Avoid the New Holiday Airport Hassles
Traveling home for the holidays just wouldn't be the same without crowded airports, delayed flights and long waits in the terminal. This year, the annual purgatory that travelers experience will be even more profound..."

Read the full Smart Money article here

Friday, October 31, 2008's "Visualiser"

Popular hotel booking site has introduced the Visualizer. Where a few pictures and some text would have been the old way to research a hotel, golf course or vacation spot, Visualizer is a Travel 2.0 concept. Provide some information about preferences, travel companinions (kids, adults, number, etc), activities, etc., and visual collage is presented.

Pretty neat, but does it replace the often boring methods of online vacation research? You decide. Take a look.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Specialists in British Isles Golf Travel

As much as I write about golf, here and elsewhere, I always enjoy discovering something new about the game.

Recently, I came across a travel agency specializing in golf travel to the British Isles (Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland, England and Wales). In business as Pioneer Golf for over a decade, and with decades more experience beyond that, they are set apart from other golf travel agencies by their in-depth knowledge of their chosen destination specialization.

Pioneer Golf is located in Austin, Texas, but their roots begin in Scotland. Founder and President, Peter Hazelton, was born in Scotland, as was his son, Mark, who is the company's vice president. Few other travel agencies have as much first-hand experience with the destinations to which they send their customers.

Pioneer specializes in the British Isles, but they are also experienced in catering to groups of four to twenty people or more. Their website assists golfers by providing maps of the Isles and a comprehensive listing of courses. A simple mouseover will reveal each course's location and a click will display a course description. With the features offered on the website, you can have your itenerary planned before you even speak with them. That way, Pioneer can concentrate on the things that will make your trip special.

Right now, golfers can book guaranteed tee-times at the Old Course, Muirfield and other popular and historic courses. Also, a golf trip to Scotland in 2009 is about 15% less expensive than in 2008. A strengthening dollar is also making a golf pilgrimage more affordable than at any time in recent years.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Poor Economy Makes Great Airfare Deals Imperative

As yet, we haven't seen significant changes due to our economic slowdown, but it's only a matter of time. According to some analysts, a downturn of epic proportions could be on the horizon. If you're still planning to travel, for golf or otherwise, it's only prudent to seek out the best deals. That few-hundred dollars saved may come in handy down the road.

Airfare is going through the roof, but there are great deals to be had. Websites like, Orbitz, and Travelocity, as well as e-books and programs in which the authors have done meticulous research into little-known ways of finding great deals.

AAA is always a great resource, and if you find the right agent, one that understands how we all need the best deal possible, he or she will make your vacation planning a little easier.

Sometimes, when demand for air travel drops, so will airfare. But, with fuel costs, a poor business climate, and dropping share prices, the price of a ticket won't drop.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Walt Disney World Savings, Not Just for the Kids!

After being home for only three days after a trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, I can honestly say that it isn't simple for the kids. Aside from a magical week at the Magic Kingdom and multiple trips through the Pirates of the Carribean and Haunted Mansion, the golf at Disney World is fabulous.

One daunting problem with a Disney trip for most families is the cost. Disney obviously knows people are going to come and they charge a premium for everything.

That's why a new program I've discovered is fabulous and can be a real moneysaver for travelers. It is written by a former Walt Disney World Cast Member(employee), Beth Haworth, and it may make your dream trip to Disney World a reality.

The Ultimate Disney World Savings Guide 2008 is full of legitimate ways families can save on their trip. From Disney World resorts, to airfare, to golf to park tickets, it can save you a bundle. The book is priced at $29.95, which is a good trade for potentially thousands in savings.

It's worth a close look. If you want to read more about it and see some certified testimonials, click here. I wish I had discovered this before our trip.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Cell Phones on Out-of-Country Golf Trip

Just a quick reminder, if you're planning to take an out-of-country golf trip.

Before you go, make sure to check with your cellular phone service provider regarding overseas coverage and service. It will be a big shock, whether you're traveling to Jamaica or Jakarta, or anywhere in between, if you don't have cell service.

If it turns out that you don't, see if you can add the service, if only for a short while. The cost may be more than you'd like, but international tolls from foreign land lines are still expensive. It may even be worthwhile to check into purchasing a phone once you get to your destination. Look into it before you leave.

Take this precaution and the golf may be even sweeter than you imagined.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Tips on Family Travel to Hilton Head

We're in the midst of our annual (semi-annual this year) family trip to Hilton Head, South Carolina. Here are some tips and ideas for other families doing the same thing.

1. If space is limited in the van/car/suv, leave the clubs at home. There are golf shops on Hilton Head and the nearby mainland that have good rental clubs. It'll cost you $40 or so, but it's worth the money.

2. Schedule a golf lesson for the kids. The pros at the Robert Trent Jones course in Hilton Head's Palmetto Dunes area are great with the kids and adults.

3. Stay near the beach. No need to expand on that one. Who wants to lug the cooler, chairs, toys, towels, kids, etc. a long way?

4. Plan your trip ahead of time. If you're traveling a long distance, plan your route and where you'll be stopping for the night. This year's experience was great. We stopped in Columbia, South Carolina(coming from Kentucky it was about a 7 hour drive). We stayed at the two-year-old Hilton Garden Inn; $109 per night with AAA discount, free cookies at the front desk, extremely courteous staff, and a fabulous and affordable full breakfast. There were tons of restaurants nearby and some within walking distance.

5. Book your golf tee times early. Although the crowds seem to be down this year, gas prices being what they are, there are still lots of golfers. Book early.

6. If you have young children, eat dinner early. Again, although the crowds are down, a two-hour wait for dinner is likely. That can kill the evening with little ones in tow. Get to your restaurants no later than 5:00pm and the wait will be minimal. Get there at 5:30pm and your out of luck.

7. Try the crab cakes at the Wreck of the Salty Dog.

Hilton Head is, in my opinion, the best place in the world to combine a family vacation and golf.

Friday, March 21, 2008

OGIO's Mammoth, a Great Golf Travel Bag

Golf travelers, you've never seen a golf travel bag like this one from OGIO.

The Mammoth has lots of storage, extra padding around the clubheads, and even a protected hat compartment. The club area has enough room for your golf bag, cinch-down straps for the bag and the compartment zips completely open for supremely easy access. The bag will stand on it's own, has wheels for tilted rolling, as well as for rolling when in the standing position.

You simply need to see it to believe it. Fantastic for traveling. You can almost pack everything you need into the bag and go without a suitcase on a short trip. I can't say enough about it!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Ireland Golf at Druids Glen Golf Resort

Everyone interested in Ireland travel has that perfect picture of the Emerald Isle in their minds eye. Ireland golf at Druids Glen Golf Resort will meet most every person's expectations

Set amid Ireland's gorgeous parklands, the resort has two great courses: Druids Glen, widely known as the "Augusta of Europe"; and Druids Heath.

The Druids Glen course has been home to great tournaments and great champions, such as Colin Montgomery and Sergio Garcia. Garcia won his first professional tournament at Druids Glen.

Visitors to this spectacular Irish Golf Resort can stay at the Marriot Druids Glen Hotel & Country Club. Give Druids Glen a look when planning your Ireland golf vacation. It's truly something to see.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Kiawah Island, South Carolina

I've posted an article about the spectacular Kiawah Island Golf Resort at the Golf Blog. If you're family is searching for a spring or summer golf vacation, Kiawah Island has virtually everything for everyone in the family. It will most assuredly make our 2008 Top-10 Golf Vacations list.

Give the article a quick read and you'll see.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pinehurst's Carolina Hotel

Certainly, there's great golf to be played in Pinehurst, North Carolina. The Pinehurst Resort is just as fabulous. But a golf trip to one of the top places to play in the USA can, and possibly should, include The Carolina Hotel.

As this article by writer Stuart Hall proves, The Carolina Hotel is A Modern Step Back in Time. In a good way, of course.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Following the Tour: Kapalua for the Mercedes-Benz Championship

As I write this blog entry, I look in the upper left corner of the Kapalua Resort website and find that it's 81-degrees (F)today, January 6th. Not much else needs to be said to convince people that Maui is a heavenly place for a golf vacation. But, there's so much more to Maui and the Kapalua Resort.

The PGA Tour's Mercedes-Benz Championship has just been completed at the Plantation Course at Kapalua. Fortunately for golfers everywhere, this is a place everyone can play. The par-73, 7,400 plus-yard course is one of the places everyone needs to play before before they die.

Another great aspect to the Kapalua Resort is that you can bring the family and find something memorable for everyone to do, at the resort or on Maui. From breathtakingly spectacular beaches (one of which has been rated as "America's Best Beach), to kids snorkeling and Hawaiian culture crafts, to whale watching with Whale Quest Kapalua, to Kapalua Adventures.

Give their website a look, if you dare. Because you'll fall in love with the place.