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What Experts in the Travel World Can Teach Us
Edited by Evelyn Hannon

Experts are helpfulFor this collection of practical travel tips we went straight to the experts. The people who design tours, the folks who sell tours, the entrepreneurs who create travel products and travel ideas. They have seen the world, they've learned 'stuff' by experience (sometimes just very simple things that can make life on the road easier) and they are my 'go-to' specialists when I need expert answers.

Each of these people was sent an email that said, 'We want to incorporate your extensive travel wisdom into our travel tip section.Your tip should be about a city/region/country you do business in - a restaurant you love, interesting accommodation, shopping, spa, something special you learned from a local, etc. The choice is yours.' This is what came back to us. I'm so glad we asked because their answers are fun to read and very helpful. We believe that you will make good use of the information in them.

MY FAVORITE RESTAURANT IN MARRAKESH, MOROCCO -- There have been a lot of new and funky cafes open up in Marrakech lately, and yes, a lot of them are very good. But my favourite one has to be Zwin Zwin, owned by a French/French-Canadian husband and wife team. Natalie and Francis bring their own flair and inspiration into the beautiful modern Moroccan decor and delicious food. What I love about this cafe is the very fresh and very tasty food, a mix of mouthwatering traditional and tradition-inspired dishes that have been done to perfection, and also local dishes you don't normally find on any cafe menu. Not to mention the delicous fresh juices, friendly service, attention to detail (table / food presentation) AND - wait for it - the absolute BEST place to view the African sunset is on their roof terrace! Evening reservations recommended. Tel: 00212638959295, Riad Zitoun Lakdim, Marrakech, Morocco

Julie Paterson, Venus Adventures, Global trips for women who love to travel

ADVICE FROM A TUSCAN FOOD EXPERT -- Want to look like a local in Tuscany, Italy? Here are three things you should do: #1. Don't put parmesan cheese on your pasta-it's like putting ketchup on a steak; #2. Don't cut your pasta-the chef went thru great lengths to make pasta that long; #3. Don't order a soda with your meal-drink water-unless you are a teenager or small child. However, there is absolutely nothing wrong with ordering a glass of lovely Italian wine:)

George Myers, Cook in Tuscany, Cook. Eat. Play.

ARE YOU TRAVELING TO VANCOUVER CANADA? -- My Favorite Restaurant in Vancouver is Joe Fourtes. It has been in business thirty years and is well known for its raw oysters and fresh sea food. It also has great Happy Hour between 3-6. You can dress up or go casual, anything goes. It is in the best location in Vancouver, 777 Thurlow Street and has a great rooftop deck. Not too expensive however you are treated to very professional servers and linen tablecloths. Tel: 604-669-1940

Kim Allen, Kim Allen Silk, Sensible 100% knit silk underwear and loungewear for every body

THE BEST LUNCH ON THE AMALFI COAST, ITALY -- Perched on the cliffs with views of Positano and Capri is Fattoria La Tagliata. Like a true fattoria, La Tagliata grows its own organic produce. And yes, Momma is literally in the kitchen in her apron and head scarf, serving over 150 guests per day. Everything comes out family-style directly from the garden to the table. My favorite starters are the parma ham and home-made salamis rounded out with home-grown broccoli, eggplant, and chickpeas. Following are fresh pastas like gnocchi, ravioli, and Mommas favorite, fusilli with pumpkin. All of this, including wine, is only 25 euros. Add an extra 5 euros for t-bone steak, chicken, and sausage. Although the food is as good as it gets, the view is the real superstar at La Tagliata. Website: www.latagliata.com

Steve Solosky, The Traveling Professor, Small Group Tours for Active Adults

WOMEN'S BEADING COOPERATIVE IN YUCATAN -- If you ever travel in the Yucatan, Mexico, be sure to visit the Isla Mujeres Women's Beading Cooperative on Isla Mujeres, a short ferry ride from Cancun. This group of amazing artists (approximately 57 women) creates one of a kind handcrafted beaded jewelry ... necklaces, earrings, bracelets, purses and more. Each piece of jewelry is unique, woven together one bead at a time, handcrafted over many hours and made from glass seed beads, shells, Swarovski crystals, semi-precious stones and pearls. The play of texture, color and light reflects the centuries old Mayan heritage which they bring to their designs.The jewelry is of very high quality, the kind you would find in a juried craft fair. If you stop at the storefront, (Monday through Saturday, 9am - 4 pm) you will almost always meet a group of the women beading around a table. Each woman earns a percentage of the sale of one of their pieces, with a percentage going back into the cooperative to buy beads and other supplies. With this income, the women can pay for housing, food and school tuition for their children. In addition, as the cooperative has grown, the women have a larger social support group and the cooperative functions as an extended family. Visit their Facebook Page to see pictures of the women in the co-op, their beautiful handcrafted jewelry or to sign up for a beaded jewelry class when you visit.

Karen Rosenberg, Portals to the Self: A Women's Circle by the Sea, Creating Women's Retreats in warm climates for 17 years

MALTESE FOOD -- The Islands of Malta have been in crossroads of cultures since ancient times, making for a fascinating history and delicious cuisine! The best place to try the local food is in Valetta, the capital, at Legligin on Lucia Street. Christopher the owner serves a set menu of traditional dishes starting with tapas and what seems like endless courses for €29. The restaurant has a great wine selection of local and Mediterranean wines to complement the food. And homemade Limoncello after dessert! The space is small with a cozy atmosphere. Popular with locals as well as visitors, so be sure to make reservations. Attire is casual. Closed on Sundays. Dinner 7:30pm to 1am. Email: legligin@hotmail.com

Erja Lipponen, WanderWoman® Tours, Small group women-only travel

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