Gretchen Kelly has traveled to over 60 countries in the past five years both as a freelance writer and in the capacity as US News Editor for International Business Traveler magazine. Working for the New York Post, Executive Travel, Women’s Health and the Travel Channel, among others, she has written about global leisure travel trends and destinations from locales as far flung as Armenia, the Transylvanian mountains of Romania and the North Pole.
Looking for an adventure-packed guy getaway escape?
Check out these six active volcano locales for a hot time with molten lava.
Looking for an adventure-packed guy getaway escape? Check out these six active volcano locales for a hot time with molten lava.
By GRETCHEN KELLY
You’re winded from the climb and breathing hard, which isn’t easy because the air smells like hell itself—that trademark scent of sulfur. You reach the crest of the hill and crane your neck to see through the mist. At first you see just flashes of light through the clouds. Then you get closer. A deep rumble shakes the ground below your feet. Mother Nature’s stomach is growling. Then, POW! A jet stream of rocks and fire spew upward like the tongue of a medieval dragon. The crater of Volcán Arenal is “coughing” up rocks and sputtering lava—the famous “strombolian” eruption style named for the volcano off the coast of Italy. There’s something about a volcano vacation that gets the testosterone going. It seems to be custom built for “man-cations,” trips that guys can take together, with their families or solo. The great thing about volcanoes is their sheer diversity. You can find eruptions that are safe enough to bring the family (Hawaii) or extremely challenging for solo hikes (Stromboli) or great buddy-building options (Arenal in Costa Rica with a side trip to a hot spring spa). David Swanson is a dedicated volcano vacationer. The National Geographic Traveler contributing editor has traveled to 50 volcanoes in 20 different countries to seek out the grandeur, drama and white-knuckle excitement that you get in what he calls “Mother Nature’s kitchen.”
SET-JETTING FOR CORPORATE GROUPS, MEETING PLANNERS AND CVBS Set-Jetting (movie-inspired experiences) are increasingly being used by corporate meeting planners, incentive groups and convention and visitor’s boards to heighten the excitement factor of their product. Imagine a James Bond speed boat tour around London, followed by a private Aston Martin drive to Ian Fleming’s favorite bar for original Bond martinis followed by a game of high-stakes cards in one of the world’s most exclusive private casinos. Or an Indiana Jones bi-plane flight to a paradisiacal rainforest and a heart-poundingly thrilling rope bridge walk (with or without snakes). Gretchen Kelly is a Set-Jetting insider. She was one of the first reporters in the US to use the term and her stories for the New York Post were among the first to explore the magical connections between film and travel. Her contacts include film designers from the new Indiana Jones film, the Pirates of the Caribbean series and other recent blockbusters. Gretchen Kelly is available as an expert consultant on Set-Jetting for corporations, incentive and meeting planners as well as CVBs and tourism boards.